Prophecy Update Newsletter
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
Life On Earth In The Millennium - A Bible Study by Jack Kelley -
Hal Lindsey once speculated that at his judgment Satan hurled two accusations at God. "You're not just and You have no love." In past studies, we have seen how God demonstrated His perfect justice through Israel and His perfect love through the Church. In this study, we'll talk about a time in the future when both perfect justice and perfect love will govern the lives of people on Earth.
Israel lived under an absolutely just system of law. It was clear and concise, made no exceptions, and showed no favoritism. There was blessing for obedience and punishment for disobedience in an obvious cause and effect relationship. What they did determined what they got. God said to them, "Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation." (Exodus 19:5-6)
The Church has showcased the incomparable riches of God's grace. We're the most blessed of any group of humanity and the only thing asked of us is that we accept by faith the free gift of salvation, purchased in advance for us with God's own life. Yes, God is pleased if we live our lives in a manner that expresses our gratitude to Him, and rewards us for doing so, but the only thing He requires is that we believe in the one He has sent. Then they asked Him, "What must we do to do the work God requires?" He answered, "The work of God is this, to believe in the one He has sent"(John 6:28-29).
In the Kingdom Age believers will be saved by faith, like the Church, but will be required to keep the Law as evidence of their belief, like Israel. I say this because it's pretty clear that salvation by grace through faith alone will end with the rapture of the Church. Otherwise there would be no need for a temple in Israel during the Millennium, with all nations being required to make an annual pilgrimage to Israel to observe the Feast of Tabernacles (Zech. 14:16-19). Also, Isaiah 2:2-3 says all nations will stream to the Lord's Temple. The Lord will teach them His ways and they will walk in His paths, and the Law (Torah) will go out from Zion and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.
Therefore, perfect justice and perfect love will be combined. This will be God's final answer to Satan and His final attempt to dwell among His people in peace. Will it work, or like Israel and the Church before it, will the Kingdom Age end in failure?
We've only talked about Law and Grace but there were actually four other attempts at peaceful coexistence between God and man leading up to them. For a complete understanding of man's history with his Creator, we'll need to review these others as well. They're called dispensations, or administrations, and all together there are seven of them.
The 7 Dispensations
Throughout history God has dealt with His people in different ways as part of the process of revealing His character. Each of these dispensations has begun with an agreement between God and man that man subsequently violated, ending the relationship in failure and requiring a judgment from God.
1) Innocence ... Between the Creation and the Fall of Man God interacted freely and personally with man. Man was created immortal and while he had agency (the power of choice) he didn't have a sin nature. God placed Adam and Eve in His garden and gave them only one restriction. They were not to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. But they violated this restriction and were expelled from the Garden. Adam, Eve, and the Serpent were all judged, the Creation was cursed, and sin entered the world.
2) Conscience ... Between the Fall of Man and the Great Flood God allowed man's conscience to rule without Divine interference. Because of man's newly acquired sin nature, the result of this was "the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually." (Genesis 6:5) After repeated warnings, God destroyed all but 8 members of the Human race in the Great Flood.
3) Human Government ... from Noah to the Tower of Babel. After the Flood, God allowed man to establish his first system of government. But the people disobeyed God's commandment to go forth and replenish the Earth, setting about instead to build a great city and a tower to protect themselves from another flood. They also used the tower to study astrology, a corruption of the Gospel that God had written in the stars using the names of 12 constellations. So God gave each of the 70 families of man a unique language that other families weren't able to understand. This caused confusion and distrust among the people and they drifted apart to be scattered through out the world, and God destroyed the tower.
4) Promise ... God set Abraham's descendants apart as His Chosen People and promised Abraham and Sarah a son through whom He said He would bless the world. But they grew tired of waiting for Him to keep His promise, and produced a son on their own, calling him Ishmael. Later, when God gave them Isaac, the son He had promised, Ishmael was sent away causing bad blood between Ishmael (Arabs) and Isaac (Jews) that continues to this day.
5) Law ... from Mt. Sinai to Pentecost. After God brought the Israelites out of Egypt, He gave Moses the 10 Commandments and offered the Israelites the land He had promised to Abraham along with a life of peace and plenty if they obeyed His Law. After 2000 years of vacillating between obedience and rebellion that resulted in them rejecting the Messiah, God finally had enough, expelled them from their land, and dispersed them throughout the world. (But not forever. The Dispensation of Law was interrupted seven years short of its allotted time. After the Rapture, during the final 7 years, also known as Daniel's 70th Week, Israel will have one final chance to live in obedience to God and accept their Messiah.)
6) Grace ... The Church Age. No longer requiring that righteousness be earned through obedience to the Law, God imputed His own righteousness to man by grace through faith in the completed work of the Lord Jesus, promising eternal blessing and a place in His own house to all who accept. It was the most outrageously lavish gift ever bestowed, free for the asking. But by the end of the Age of Grace most of humanity will have rejected His gift, choosing instead to live on their own terms, betting that either God doesn't exist, or if He does He'll allow them into His kingdom anyway. After removing the relative few who have accepted His gift so they'll be safe with Him, He'll punish the rest through the most severe time of judgment ever visited on Earth.
7) Kingdom ... the 1000 Year Reign of the Lord, also known as the Millennium. At its outset Satan will be bound, all unbelievers will be expelled from the planet, the curse will be removed, and God will once again dwell in the midst of His people. You'd think that finally man could live in a manner pleasing to Him. Whether he will or not is the subject of our study.
Who Are You Calling A Failure?
Some in the Church might question the view that the Age of Grace has been a failure, but that's because we're among the few who have accepted the Lord's free gift of pardon and will therefore enjoy its benefits. Remember, God's desire is to reconcile us to Himself (Colossians 1:19-20). He doesn't want for any to perish, but for all to come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9). And yet over the last 2,000 years most people have turned down His gift and gone their own way. After doing everything He could, short of violating man's free will and forcing him to accept the pardon He offered, most of mankind will have rejected Him. Can you blame Him for being so angry as to unleash the full fury of His wrath against them?
Even in the Church, the response to God's gift of eternal Life has been more apathy than adoration. When less than 10% of people who claim to be born again have adopted a Biblical world view, it's clear that there's been a serious disconnect between His gift and our gratitude. When compared to God's desire the Age of Grace has been a failure.
This is no more of a surprise to God than the outcome of His previous attempts. He doesn't do things so He can see how we'll respond. He already knows that. He does things so we can see how we'll respond. Paul said every thing that was written in the past was written to teach us. (Romans 15:4) So far the lesson has been that no matter what God has done to draw us near, man is untrustworthy and rebellious, pushing God away and bringing judgment upon himself as a result.
Now For The Kingdom
Before we go on, let's remind ourselves that the Church will be in the New Jerusalem during the Millennium and not on Earth. The people on earth will be Israel and surviving Gentiles from the Great tribulation, all believers, who will populate the nations. Still being in their natural state, they'll soon be joined by the children they will bear.
OK, so what about the Kingdom Age, will it be a failure too? A study of the Kingdom Age shows that at the beginning, life will be as close to heaven on earth as one could imagine. There will be peace on Earth and goodwill toward men, just like the angel promised to the shepherds on the night of the Lord's birth (Luke 2:14). The creation, freed from the bondage of the curse, will be responding eagerly to mankind's husbandry, with harvests so plentiful that it will be time for planting a new crop before they can finish bringing the old crop in (Amos 9:13). Perfect weather and overflowing bounty will make work a joy instead of a burdensome toil. Long life spans will return as sickness and disease again become rare occurrences (Isaiah 65:20). "Once again men and women of ripe old age will sit in the streets of Jerusalem, each with cane in hand because of his age. The city streets will be filled with boys and girls playing there" (Zech. 8:4-5). This will be true throughout the world because the Lord will settle all disputes between the nations. They will not take up arms against each other, nor will they even train for war anymore (Isaiah 2:4). Every man will sit under his own vine and under his own fig tree and no one will make them afraid (Micah 4:4).
The Bible only mentions one Temple in the Millennium. It will be in Israel and daily sacrifices will again be the norm, administered by the Levitical priesthood. The Millennial Temple will be quite different from the historical Temples. There will be no incense altar, no menorah, no ark of the covenant, and no wash basin. The veil between the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies will be replaced by a wooden screen, and the entire interior will be covered in wood rather than gold, as in former temples. Of the Levitical feasts, they will celebrate only Passover (no lamb), Unleavened Bread, and Tabernacles, with worldwide representation only required for Tabernacles (Ezekiel 40-46). Although the Bible doesn't say this, I imagine the rest of the world will utilize some form of the synagogue system of worship, first developed by Ezekiel during the Babylonian captivity and still in use today.
We're only given glimpses of the beginning and end of the Kingdom Age, but because of the shocking difference in the two, we can surmise that after a period of time things start going downhill fast. The Lord's administration will be just but inflexible. He'll rule them with a rod of iron and His punishment for disobedience will be harsh and swift. For example, nations who refuse to participate in the annual Feast of Tabernacles will not receive any rainfall (Zech. 14:16-19).
But natural man has a sin nature and will eventually rebel against the Lord's rule. Psalm 2 tells the story.
Why do the nations conspire and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against the LORD and against his Anointed One.
"Let us break their chains," they say, "and throw off their fetters."
The One enthroned in heaven laughs; the Lord scoffs at them. Then he rebukes them in his anger and terrifies them in his wrath, saying, "I have installed my King on Zion, my holy hill." (Psalm 2:1-6)
Once again created beings will presume to free themselves from the rule of their Creator. But the King ruling the Earth was put there by God Himself, and that makes Him the King of their kings. Then He'll remind them of their position in the hierarchy.
I will proclaim the decree of the LORD : He said to me, "You are my Son; today I have become your Father. Ask of me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession. You will rule them with an iron scepter; you will dash them to pieces like pottery."
Therefore, you kings, be wise; be warned, you rulers of the earth. Serve the LORD with fear and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest he be angry and you be destroyed in your way, for his wrath can flare up in a moment. Blessed are all who take refuge in him. (Psalm 2:7-12)
In an event that was later modeled in the Biblical adoption ceremony (Galatians 4:4-7), the Father formally named His Son heir of His estate and bequeathed His inheritance to Him. All the nations are His, and He has the authority to rule them as He pleases. Man's choice will be to obey or suffer the consequences. Obedience will be rewarded with blessing, but rebellion will bring destruction.
We're neither told how many will be saved during the Millennium, nor what their destiny will be. What we are told is at the end of the 1000 year Kingdom Age Satan will be freed and will have no trouble recruiting a large army from among the nations for one last attempt to regain his lost empire. He'll find a ready audience for his deception and his army will soon be as numerous as the grains of sand on the seashore. From all over the world they'll come to surround God's people and His Holy City. But in one sudden burst of flame from Heaven they'll be devoured and Satan will be cast into the Lake of Fire for eternity (Rev. 20:7-10). Once again, man rebels, God judges and another Age ends in failure.
Then the end will come, when he (Jesus) hands over the kingdom to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For he "has put everything under his feet" (Psalm 8:6).
Now when it says that "everything" has been put under him, it is clear that this does not include God himself, who put everything under Christ. When he has done this, then the Son himself will be made subject to him who put everything under him, so that God may be all in all. (1 Cor. 15:24-28)
At that point, God's response to Satan's accusations will be complete, and His judgment will be final. Heaven and Earth will be purified. Eternity will begin, and God will reign supreme. Hallelujah!
On Eve of Tisha B'Av, Discovery Proves Babylonian Burning of First Temple Chronicled in Book of Kings - By Abra Forman -
"He burned the House of Hashem, the king's palace, and all the houses of Yerushalayim; he burned down the house of every notable person." II Kings 25:9 (The Israel Bible™)
On the eve of Tisha B'av, the fast day commemorating the destruction of the First and Second Temples, archaeological evidence of that destruction has been uncovered, verifying the truth of the Book of Kings and reaffirming that the Temples stood in Jerusalem.
In a discovery the Israeli Antiquities Authority (IAA) called "mesmerizing proof" of the Babylonian destruction of the First Temple, structures over 2,600 years old were exposed under collapsed layers of stone in Jerusalem's City of David excavation park.
"We have a very very clear destruction level" showing signs of destruction by fire, said Dr. Joe Uziel, Excavation Director of the IAA.
The Second Book of Kings describes the Babylonian attack on Jerusalem in detail. King Nebuchadnezzar and his army besieged the city of Jerusalem for two years before the city walls were breached, and on the seventh day of the month of Av, the destruction began.
On the seventh day of the fifth month-that was the nineteenth year of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon-Nebuzaradan, the chief of the guards, an officer of the king of Babylon, came to Yerushalayim. He burned the House of Hashem, the king's palace, and all the houses of Yerushalayim; he burned down the house of every notable person. The entire Chaldean force that was with the chief of the guard tore down the walls of Yerushalayim on every side. II Kings 25:8-1
The First Temple was burned on the ninth of Av (Tisha B'Av), which has ever since been a day of mourning for the Jewish people. This year it will fall in less than a week, on August 1.
The City of David discovery was full of clues revealing the nature of First Temple-era life. Within the collapse, archaeologists found charred wood, grape seeds, pottery, fish scales and bones, and unique and rare artifacts.
"These findings depict the affluence and character of Jerusalem, capital of the Judean Kingdom," the IAA's statement said.
Dozens of clay storage jars, used for both grain and liquids like wine, were discovered, several of which had stamped seals depicting a rosette on the handle. The seals are typical of the end of the First Temple Judean period, said IAA excavation directors Ortal Chalaf and Dr. Uziel.
The seals "were used for the administrative system that developed towards the end of the Judean dynasty," they said in a joint statement.
They added that some of the ornamental finds indicated the wealth and prosperity of the Judean Kingdom's capital. Among the finds was a "distinct and rare" small ivory statue of a woman, with a particularly high quality of carving attesting to "the high caliber of the artifact's artistic level, and the skill par excellence of the artists during this era."
The excavation also shed light on the true borders of First Temple Jerusalem. The structures were discovered beyond the wall constituting the then-eastern border of the capital, proving that the bustling city had already outgrown its fortifications before the Babylonian destruction.
A Day of Mourning - By Randy Nettles -
The next historical anniversary date for Israel is the 9th day of Av, otherwise known as Tisha B'Av. Av is the 5th month on the Jewish calendar. The current Jewish calendar year is 5777. This year the 9th day of Av is on July 31, 2017.
Tisha B'Av is not one of the appointed Feast days of the Lord, but is a "fast" and a day of mourning. There have been 8 tragic events for the Jewish people that have occurred on this day throughout history.
1) Twelve Jewish spies survey the Promised Land - Moses sent out 12 tribal leaders to spy out the land and its inhabitants for 40 days prior to entering the Promised Land of Canaan. 10 of the 12 spies returned with negative reports about how impossible it would be to conquer the enemy, due to mighty giants living in the land.
Even after witnessing God's miracles and His promise of victory, the 10 spies showed no faith that the newly formed nation of Israel could prevail and take the land from the enemy. They advised the children of Jacob against going to war against the Canaanites.
The Bible records that the people believed the evil report and mourned all night in fear. They turned against Moses, Aaron, and the two faithful spies (Caleb and Joshua). Some rebels in the group led an attempt to stone Moses and to return to the bondage of Egypt .
"According to the ancient Jewish commentary, the Mishna (Ta'anit 29a), this event occurred on the 9th day of the month of Av" , in the year 2317 on the Jewish calendar. The date on our modern Gregorian calendar was July 8, 1444 BC, on a Friday.
God destroyed the rebel leaders and informed the people they would wander in the wilderness for forty year for their rebellion and disobedience...one year for every day the spies had searched out the land.
This tragic rebellion and unbelief in God's promises caused the temporary loss of the Promised Land for an entire generation. Everyone 20 years and older would not live to enter the Promised Land, save for Caleb and Joshua. "Moses told these sayings unto all the children of Israel ; and the people mourned greatly" (Numbers 14:39).
From this day on, the 9th of Av became a "fast" of mourning as the Jews wept over their lack of obedience to God and their subsequent punishment.
2) The destruction of Solomon's Temple by the Babylonians - The Babylonian army under Nebuchadnezzar besieged Jerusalem in 588 BC. After a 2 year siege they breached the walls on the 17th day of the 4th month of Tammuz. The Babylonians broke through the city walls, killed multitudes, burned the Temple , and took its precious vessels. This tragic event occurred on Av 9, 3175 (July 10, 586 BC), on a Monday.
"According to the Jewish commentary, Me'am Lo'ez, by Rabbi Yakov Culi and Rabbi Aguiti, and other historical sources, including Ta'anit 29a, from the Jerusalem Talmud; the Babylonian army fought their way into the Temple on the 7th day of Av. The soldiers ate, drank, and caroused there until the 9th of Av. And toward evening, they set the Temple on fire. It burned all night and through the next day, the 10th of Av. Jeremiah, the prophet, was an eyewitness to this tragic event.
This national tragedy has been commemorated by the Jews ever since the solemn fast, on the 9th of Av, known as Tisha B'Av. For more than 2000 years, the Jews have read the book of Lamentations in which Jeremiah laments the Babylonian destruction of Jerusalem and the great Temple of Solomon ." 
3) The destruction of the second temple by the Romans - The Romans had been at war with the Jews since AD 66. They finally were about to crush the revolt by destroying their capitol, Jerusalem , in AD 70. Over 1,250,000 people were surrounded inside the city by the Roman legions. The original attack had occurred on the Feast of Passover when a huge number of pilgrims came to the Temple to give sacrifices and were thereby trapped in the city.
The Roman general Titus offered terms of surrender that would have preserved the Jews city and Temple , but the Jews refused. Thus the city and the Temple were destroyed on Av 9, 3830 (August 1, AD 70), on a Friday.
This tragic event fulfilled Jesus prophecy 37 years earlier when he said, "for the days shall come upon you, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about you, and compass you round, and keep you in on every side, and shall lay you even with the ground, and your children within you: and they shall not leave in you one stone upon another, because you knew not the time of thy visitation" (Luke 19:43-44).
This prophecy was fulfilled to the smallest detail. As the Temple burned with tremendous heat, the sheets of gold that covered much of the Temple melted. The molten gold ran down into the cracks between the foundation stones. Afterwards, the Roman soldiers used wedges to overturn every stone to get to the gold, thus fulfilling Christ's words.
4) The Romans plowed Jerusalem and the Temple Mount - One year after the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple , the Romans plowed the Temple Mount and the city. This occurred on Av 9, 3831 (July 22, AD 71), on a Wednesday.
This was a complete fulfillment of the prophecy of Micah, "Therefore shall Zion for your sakes be plowed as a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountains of the house as the high places of the forest" (Micah 3:12).
"A rabbinical source (Ta'anit 26b), records this was done to turn the city into a Roman colony."
5) The destruction of Simon Bar Kochba's army - After the fall of Jerusalem , there was a period of enforced peace between Rome and Israel . In AD 133, a dynamic warrior named Simon Bar Kocbha, led a rebellion against Rome . He was successful for two years until Emperor Hadrian and his vast Roman army destroyed the Jewish rebels.
Many people believed that Bar Kochba was the Jewish Messiah, including the famous scholar Rabbi Akiba. The Jews still believed the Jewish Messiah would be a great warrior and would lead Israel in victory against the Romans and other enemies.
This event partially fulfilled the prophecy by Jesus when he said, "I am come in my Father's name, and you receive me not; if another comes in his own name, him you will receive" (John 5:43).
On that terrible day of the 9th of Av, in the Jewish year 3895 (August 3, AD 135), on a Wednesday; the last great army of an independent Israel (ancient) was slaughtered without mercy. The prophet Isaiah may have referred to this event when he prophesied, "Within sixty five years Ephraim ( Israel ) will be too shattered to be a people" (Isaiah 7:8).
6) England expelled the Jews - Following condemnation of the Jewish Talmud by Pope Gregory IX in the year AD 1236, criticism of Jews increased and Jewish communities began to be displaced throughout Western Europe.
King Edward I of England issued a declaration in 1275, cancelling all debts owed to Jews and forbidding them from making any loans to non-Jews. In addition, Edward arrested a number of Jewish leaders, demanding a ransom before releasing them. On Av 9, 5050 (July 24, AD 1290), on a Monday; King Edward expelled all Jews from England , confiscating all their assets for himself.
The history of England's rise and fall can be traced to this ancient prophecy in the book of Genesis. "And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curses you: and in you shall all the families of the earth be blessed" (Genesis 12:3).
England 's decline started approximately at this time and continued until 400 years later, when Oliver Cromwell, granted the Jews the legal right of settlement in 1657. England prospered at this time and later. At the end of World War I, a victorious England held power through its British Empire over one-quarter of the world.
In the 1920s and throughout the period until 1948, England repeatedly reversed its promises to the League of Nations and failed to provide a national homeland for the Jews (as promised by the Balfour declaration). During World War II, the Jews were slaughtered by the Nazis of Germany, because they had no homeland to flee to when the persecution of Adolf Hitler began. Even the U.S. turned down many Jewish immigrants that were trying to enter the country at this time.
In the years between 1917 through 1948, England lost her vast empire; and was no longer the world's preeminent superpower.
7) Spain expelled the Jews - On Av 9, 5252 (August 10, AD 1492), on a Wednesday; the Spanish government ordered the expulsion of Jews from Spain . Every Jew who would not immediately be baptized was required to leave the country. King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, desiring to create an entirely Catholic nation, sought to erase Judaism from Spain .
The Spanish Empire declined at this point...never to fully recover.
On this same day in history, Christopher Columbus left Spain and discovered the New World . This event was significant to the Jews because eventually America provided a place of refuge for the Jewish people. When the new nation of Israel was reborn in 1948, the U.S. of America became Israel 's strongest advocate and protector.
The United States was the first country to recognize Israel as a nation of the world. America 's rise to world power status began with her friendship with Israel ...for God said, "I will bless them that bless you, and curse them that curse you." (Genesis 12:3).
8) Russia Mobilized for WWI and launched persecutions against the Jews - On Av 9, 5674 (July 31, 1914), on a Friday, World War I was declared by Russia and Germany . The mobilization of Russia 's army triggered persecutions and attacks against the Jews in eastern Russia , killing tens of thousands, and forced many to immigrate to the Holy Land. This immigration helped set the stage for the historical events leading to the creation of the modern nation of Israel in 1948.
World War I might have been the start of the prophecy by Jesus when he told his disciples "nation shall rise against nation and kingdom against kingdom" (Matthew 24:7). More than 12 million people died during this "war to end all wars."
The 9th of Av will also occur on July 31 of this current year 2017. It will be 103 full calendar years, to the exact date (for both the Gregorian and Jewish calendars), that Russia and Germany declared war against one another and entered into World War I. It was also a tragic day for the Jewish people...another day to mourn and fast on Tisha B'Av.
However, the Bible speaks of a time when Israel 's fasts will turn into feasts.
"Thus says the Lord of hosts; The fast of the fourth month, and the fast of the fifth, and the fast of the seventh, and the fast of the tenth, shall be to the house of Judah joy and gladness, and cheerful feasts; therefore love the truth and peace" (Zechariah 9:19).
This will occur when Jesus, the Messiah, returns to the earth to set up his Millennium and eternal kingdoms. The remnant of Jewish believers will inherit all of the land God originally promised to their forefathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The Jews will finally become what God intended for them to be...a blessing unto the nations and will lead many to the Lord.
"For the seed shall be prosperous; the vine shall give her fruit, and the ground shall give her increase, and the heavens shall give their dew; and I will cause the remnant of this people to possess all these things. And it shall come to pass, that as you were a curse among the heathen, O house of Judah, and house of Israel; so will I save you, and you shall be a blessing: fear not, but let your hands be strong" (Zechariah 8: 12-13).
  ARMAGEDDON: Appointment with Destiny, Grant R. Jeffrey, pp. 72, 73.
Will the End-Times Temple Be Built in a Different Location Than We Think? - Kelly McDonald Jr. -
In the end times, there are several references to the temple of God. Jesus mentioned that the abomination that makes desolate would be made in the temple (Matt. 24:15). The desecration of the temple is the halfway point of Daniel's 70th week (Dan. 9:27). Paul said the man of lawlessness would proclaim himself as God in the temple (2 Thess. 2:4).
Of course, there is a small problem. Presently, there is no temple! This means that the third temple will have to be completely or partially rebuilt for these prophecies to come to pass. This is why so many articles relating to the temple are posted here on Charisma News. It is an essential event to end-times prophecy.
Most articles on this subject focus on the temple being rebuilt on the site we presently call the Temple Mount. There is even a wall there commonly called the Western Wall. It is believed to be a wall remaining from the second temple that the Romans destroyed.
One impediment that prevents the third temple from being rebuilt is the fact that the Al-Aqsa mosque, also called the Dome of the Rock, sits on the Temple Mount. This means that it would have to be removed for another temple to be rebuilt, which would cause a major war. What if the actual Temple Mount was in another location?
About the second temple, destroyed in A.D. 70, Jesus said, "Truly I say to you, not one stone shall be left here upon another that shall not be thrown down" (Matt. 24:2b). If every stone was supposed to be thrown down, then how does an entire wall survive?
New archeological evidence suggests that the first and second temples were actually located in a separate part of Jerusalem. If this is true, then the third temple can be rebuilt at any time and does not require the removal of the Al-Aqsa mosque. This has tremendous implications for end-time events.
Pastor: Microchipping Humans Is Straight Out of Revelation - Lauren Creekmore -
It's been making big headlines: The first American workers are getting injected with microchips.
The Wisconsin company that's doing it says it's the future, and it's all about convenience. But the idea is sparking opposition from both religious and secular circles, from biblical End Times concerns to privacy rights.
Pastor Dave Doyle from Hope Christian Fellowship Church in Iowa says the microchips make him think about the "mark of the Beast" from Revelation 13:16, according to KCRG in Cedar Rapids.
"I take microchipping as a form of the mark. There's many pieces of the mark, and then again, all these pieces of the mark is designed to control," he said.
Doyle is referring to the news story about a company called Three Square Market that is giving their employees the option to get a microchip implanted in their hand. Read more here.
Employees can use these chips to enter their work building, login to a computer, or buy things from the company vending machine.
But Pastor Doyle thinks this type of technology could eventually be used by governments to abuse people's rights. He believes the chips are something that will one day be forced on people.
"It will eventually become something that's mandatory, and for those who refuse it, you will have to deal with the authorities who don't appreciate your opinions," he says.
The company says that the chips won't have GPS tracking and that it is FDA approved.
But Doyle says he will tell his congregation to never get chipped.
"If I'm told I need to go against the Word of God, I would prefer to go to jail first. And Christians need to have that mindset because that's what we're going to go against," he said.
There are plenty of concerns on the secular side as well. Illinois Institute of Technology professor Jeremy Hajek says the legal system needs to catch up with this new technology.
"So you're opening up a much larger privacy issue of, well, who owns where you go? Who owns what you do? And who owns what you buy? Are you entitled to that privacy? Or does that privacy not really exist," he questions.
"Do you own that data? Or does the company own that data? And I think the legal system needs to catch up a little bit to this because these are new questions that the current laws on hand may not quite accurately cover," he added.
Three Square Market, also known as 32M, says more than 50 employees are voluntarily getting implants Aug. 1 and are calling implant day a "chip party" at its River Falls headquarters.
The chips are the size of a grain of rice and they are inserted underneath the skin between the thumb and forefinger using a syringe.
The technology is already available in Europe but this is the first time it's being used in the U.S.
Promoters hope the $300 microchips will eventually be used on everything from air travel to public transit as well as storing medical information.
The company is partnering with Sweden's BioHax International, where employees have been using the implants.
Three Square Market is paying for the employees' microchips.
"It's something about the nature of humanity here that you really need to consider internally. Who are you? And what are you? And I think that will determine each person's answer in reality to this question," Hajek said.
Reasons to Study Prophecy - Nathele Graham -
Many sermons today are wishy-washy. There, I've said it. It seems as if they're designed to tickle the ears of the congregation and not to offend anyone. Preachers skip around the Bible and pull out simple subjects that don't cause controversy. These subjects are important to teach about but often lack depth. When Scripture is taught verse by verse from Genesis through Revelation, no topic will be skipped and God's truth won't be compromised. When verses in Genesis are shown to directly relate to verses in Revelation it's easy to see that the Bible is one book instead of many small books. Both the Old and New Testaments are inspired by the Holy Spirit speaking through men to teach us God's truth. "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:" 2 Timothy 3:16. The word "all" is translated from the word "pas" and means "each, every, any, all, the whole, everyone, all things, everything". It doesn't mean that only the easy Scriptures are profitable, but the difficult ones too. Prophecy for instance. When was the last time your pastor taught about Bible prophecy? It probably wasn't last week or the week before. Most likely it won't be any time in the near future. Since so much of God's word has to do with prophecy most congregations aren't being fed on some important points of Scripture.
Prophecy can be confusing, which is why many people don't study it. Why is it confusing? One reason is that some prophecy was given for a future time and the events couldn't be understood by the generations coming before the fulfillment. In other words, Daniel probably didn't fully understand the 70 week prophecy but knew it was from God. Another example is a prophecy concerning the birth of the Messiah which said that a virgin would give birth. "Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. " Isaiah 7:14. Instead of believing that all things are possible with God, some people say instead of "virgin" it really means "young woman". Think about it. From the time the prophecy was given to the birth of Jesus, how many young women do you think gave birth to a son? It has to mean that a virgin would give birth, otherwise it would be meaningless. Indeed Mary was a virgin until after Jesus was born and she subsequently became pregnant by her husband Joseph. Prophecy was fulfilled just as it was written. There are many more prophecies about where the Messiah would be born, how He would die, who would betray Him, the day He would ride into Jerusalem, and so on. Had the religious leaders of the day believed what they read in Scripture they would have recognized Jesus as the Messiah and the world would be very different now. But, they didn't believe what God said in prophecy.
Had the Jewish leaders recognized their Messiah they would have avoided tragedy. As Jesus rode the donkey colt into Jerusalem (as prophesied in Zechariah 9:9) on the exact day foretold in Daniel (Daniel 9:25), He prophesied what the result of their rejection would be...the destruction of Jerusalem. "And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it, saying, If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid from thine eyes. For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side, and shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon anoter; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation." Luke 19:41-44. It all happened just as Jesus said. Jerusalem was destroyed in 70 AD. God gives us prophecy to warn us of what's coming. We can either deny it or we can pay attention and know the hour is getting late. The signs of the times are all around and Jesus will soon call Christians home.
A good reason to study prophecy is that Jesus recognized its importance. Had the disciples understood prophecy they wouldn't have been so confused on Resurrection Day! They saw Jesus die and saw His body placed in the tomb. Their hopes that He had been the one who would drive out their oppressors were squashed and they grieved. Jesus didn't come to free them from Roman rule, but to conquer death for all people who accept His sacrifice. David wrote about the fact that when he died God would not leave his soul in hell, but beyond that he looked to the Resurrection of Jesus. "For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption." Psalm 16:10, and that He would ascend into Heaven "Thou has ascended on high, thou has led captivity captive: thou has received gifts for men; yea for the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them." Psalm 68:18. On that glorious first day of the week when the tomb was found to be empty, there was much confusion among the disciples. Two of these men left to go to Emmaus and as they walked along they discussed the events of the previous few days. We can only imagine their conversation. "We saw Him crucified and buried"..."His tomb was sealed and a Roman guard was stationed there"..."Who took His body", and so on. As they walked along a stranger joined them. He wasn't actually a stranger but they didn't recognize Him. "And he said unto them, What manner of communications are these that ye have one to another as ye walk, and are sad?" Luke 24:17. They told Him of the events of the previous days and that their hopes had been shattered. "But we trusted that it had been he which should have redeemed Israel: and beside all this, to day is the third day since these things were done. " Luke 24:21. Had they understood prophecy they would have known what had happened. "Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory? And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself." Luke 24:25-27. What a study that would have been! I'm sure He explained the symbolism behind Adam joining Eve in sin in order to be with his bride just as Jesus became sin to save His bride. Did He talk about when Abraham was told to sacrifice Isaac but God provided the sacrifice in place of Isaac and how that was a picture of Jesus, the Son of God, being the sacrificial Lamb? I'm sure He spoke about the meaning behind Passover and what the symbolism behind the brass serpent that healed the Israelites in the wilderness. Did He explain how the Book of Ruth is about the true Kinsman Redeemer? Every "picture" and every prophecy concerning Jesus was explained. Prophecy is included in Scripture to inform us about where we are on God's timeline. That should be enough to encourage everyone to study prophecy to learn about what is in our near future.
Jesus also talked of the end of the age and told His disciples of earthquakes, wars, persecution, and more that would be the signs of the end of the age. "And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh." Luke 21:28. The things Jesus said would come to pass are found in the previous verses. If you pay attention it's easy to see that earthquakes are happening more frequently and with greater magnitude, famine and disease are killing many people, and wars are gripping most countries. These events make news headlines but most people don't see the prophetic significance. So many fail to study prophecy and scoff at the idea that we are getting very near to the Rapture. That attitude is also a fulfillment of prophecy. "Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, and saying, Where is the promise of his coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation." 2 Peter 3:3-4. The scoffers are wrong. Study God's word and be aware of the rapid changes in the world and what that means in terms of end times prophecy.
If you study prophecy and watch the news you'll become aware that the events described in Revelation (beginning in chapter 6) are being set up. That can be very frightening. As we draw ever closer to that final 7 year time period there will be more and more problems with disease, famine, persecution, wars, and other huge challenges in life. Today we see many men trying to bring peace to the Middle East and there's a good chance one of them will accomplish that task, but then turn around and show his true character as the Anti-Christ. The dry bones of Ezekiel 37 came back together in 1948 when Israel was reestablished as a nation and life is being breathed into them. The nations named as a part of the Gog/Magog war in Ezekiel 38 are lining up against Israel. Isaiah 17:1 tells us that Damascus will be a ruinous heap. Have you seen pictures of Damascus lately? The good news is that Christians can be assured that we will not be on earth to suffer the wrath of God in Daniel's 70th week. "For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ." 1 Thessalonians 5:9. That doesn't mean that Christians won't see troublesome times, but the Rapture will occur prior to the onset of Daniel's 70th week.
Yes, the end-time events are coming together quickly. Study Revelation and if you're a Christian you will find much hope in the first five chapters. If you aren't a Christian, then you will experience the following chapters and the wrath of God. John tells us that there's a blessing in reading Revelation. "Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand." Revelation 1:3. When you study the things that will happen on earth after the Rapture of the ekklēsia (Christians) you should feel an urgency to tell everyone you can about Jesus. Faith in Jesus Christ is the only protection we have. "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved." Acts 4:12. Whether a person dies a normal death or is taken in the Rapture, it's faith in Jesus Christ for salvation that matters. It's the difference between eternal life and eternal death.
God has given us prophecy in order that we will be aware of where we are in history. If it's important enough to Him that He included so much prophecy in Scripture, shouldn't that make it important to us?
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: Socialist Republicans kill healthcare repeal - Bill Wilson - www.dailyjot.com
Senator Rand Paul's (R-KY) simple repeal of the failed socialist healthcare law was shot down Wednesday 45-55, with six establishment Republicans siding with the socialists in the Senate (pretty much the entire Democratic Party). A few weeks ago people were asking The Daily Jot who were the Republicans that are socialists in the Senate. This vote proved that the Jot had it right. Here you go: Dean Heller (R-NV), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), John McCain (R-AZ), Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Rob Portman (R-OH), and Susan Collins (R-ME). Lindsey Graham (R-SC) was the other prediction. Interesting that they had all publicly promised a repeal.
Here is what these people vowed about repealing socialist healthcare during campaigns or when they knew the previous occupant of the Oval Office would veto it: Lamar Alexander, "The wisest course is to repeal Obamacare and replace it step by step with solutions that lower health care costs." Shelley Moore Capito, "I have consistently voted to repeal and replace this disastrous health care law, and I am glad that a repeal bill will finally reach the president's desk." Dean Heller, "This DC bureaucrat-driven healthcare system will only result in limited health care choices and higher costs for Nevadans." Lisa Murkowski, "This law is not affordable for anyone in Alaska. That is why I will support the bill that repeals the ACA and wipes out its harmful impacts."
John McCain, "It is clear that any serious attempt to improve our health care system must begin with a full repeal and replacement of Obamacare, and I will continue fighting on behalf of the people of Arizona to achieve it." Rob Portman, "I'm for repealing this broken law and replacing it with something better that gives patients more choice, decreases costs and increases access to quality, affordable care." Now they will all give a bunch of double talk about why they did this or that, but the bottom line is that unless they know their constituents will vote them out of office and their tidy little gravy train will come to and end, they will continue to vote their socialist hearts. They are liars and hypocrites, just playing the political game.
Communists and socialists will point to the Bible, which by definition they don't even believe in, to justify communism. Acts 4:32 says, "And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that any of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common." This is not a justification of communism. First, Communism denounces God and all religion, establishing government as god. Second, the Christians in Acts were not forced to provide all things in common. They freely did so from their hearts in the liberty by which Christ set them free. Socialist healthcare is compulsory, it attempts to replace God, it is neither affordable nor good care. It needs to go, and so do those Senators who lied to us about repealing it. I wrote mine already, and I'll remember come election time.
Daily Devotion: Make Every Day Count - By Greg Laurie -
Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?" -Job 1:8
Whenever I read the book of Job, my first thought is, "Lord, if you ever happen to feel particularly proud of me, would you keep it to yourself? Don't brag if Lucifer is around" (not that He would).
Job 1 shows us that the devil has access to the throne of God, even after the fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. We also see that in spite of his power and wicked agenda, he must ask permission when it comes to the child of God because of a hedge of protection the Lord has placed around us.
Having said that, when your number is up, your number is up. We all have to die one day. No one has a guarantee of living to the age of 90 or 100, or even 50, 60, or 80. We don't know when our time will come. Therefore, we want to always be ready to meet God and make every single day count. Don't say you will get right with God in your old age. You might not have the luxury of old age. Serve Him now, whatever your age may be.
In the New Testament we read of Jesus saying to Peter, "Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail" (Luke 22:31-32).
This is a reminder that when the devil comes knocking at your door, it's a good thing to say, "Lord, would You mind getting that?" We don't want to answer, because we are no match for the devil. Though he is a powerful foe, he certainly is not as powerful as God. We don't want to tangle with him. We want to stand behind God's protection.
FROM THE HEART
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