Prophecy Update Newsletter
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
The Three Questions Of Matthew 24 - Jack Kelley - https://gracethrufaith.com/end-times-prophecy/the-three-questions-of-matt-24/
As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. "Tell us," they said, "when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?" (Matt. 24:3)
One of the mistakes Christians make in reading the Bible is caused by our tendency to look at everything through "Church colored glasses." By that I mean we read it as if it all applies directly to us without regard for the context or historical background. I know Paul said everything that was written in the past was written to teach us (Romans 15:4) but that doesn't mean it was all written to us or about us. It means we're supposed to learn from the experiences of those who came before us. A prime example of this kind of mistake can be found in our interpretation of the Olivet Discourse (Matt. 24-25). I'll show you what I mean.
Jesus left the temple and was walking away when his disciples came up to him to call his attention to its buildings. "Do you see all these things?" he asked. "I tell you the truth, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down." (Matt. 24:1-2)
These two verses set the tone for the entire discussion, yet in our rush to get to the meat of the passage they are often ignored. From Mark's account we know that after Jesus said this, four of the disciples came to Him for clarification. They were Peter, James, John and Andrew (Mark 13:3), and they asked Him 3 questions; When will this happen? (When will these buildings be torn down? ) What will be the sign of your coming? What will be the sign of the End of the Age?
So let's look at them individually to gain more of the background that prompted these questions. We'll find that the first two are pretty simple, but the third one is a different matter altogether.
When Will This Happen?
The view of Jerusalem at sunset from the Mount of Olives is breathtaking, even today. In the Lord's time it was even more so because the Temple was still standing. To them it was the most beautiful building imaginable. There's a saying based on the Talmud that goes, "One who has not seen the Temple from the time of Herod has never seen a magnificent building." It had been 46 years in the construction and was not finished yet. At sunset its white limestone exterior took on a bright golden hue, as if it was made of pure gold.
Repeating His Palm Sunday prophecy from Luke 19:41-44 Jesus said the temple and surrounding buildings would be so completely destroyed that not one stone would be left standing on another. Luke's account of the Olivet Discourse is found in Luke 21. He's the only one who recorded a detailed answer to their first question, "When will this happen?". Luke 21:12-24, a description of the Roman conquest of 68-70 AD, was the Lord's answer.
What Will Be The Sign Of Your Coming?
Obviously they meant His 2nd Coming and He actually gave them 2 clear signs. After describing several things that would not be specific signs, but merely "birth pangs", He gave them the first clear sign in Matt. 24:15. It's the Abomination of Desolation standing in the Holy Place and it will mark the beginning of the Great Tribulation (Matt. 24:21). The second unmistakeable sign of His coming is described as the Sign of the Son of Man. It will signal the Great Tribulation's end (Matt. 24:29-30). After that the Lord will return on the clouds with power and great glory.
What Will Be The Sign Of The End Of The Age?
This question is more complex than they ever imagined when they asked it, even though the answer is simple. Ultimately, the sign of the End of the Age will be the Lord's return to become King of the Whole Earth (Zech. 14:9). After that the Kingdom Age will begin. This question is the one where so many believers are way off the mark. It's those "church colored glasses" I mentioned. But when you understand the disciples' perspective you'll see that it was not possible for them to be thinking of the Church Age when they used the phrase "end of the age" like so many Christians assume. Here's why.
Over 500 years previously the Angel Gabriel had told Daniel how and when the end of the age would come (Daniel 9:24-27). He said that from the time they received permission to restore and rebuild Jerusalem after the Babylonian captivity there would be 70 periods of 7 years each (These 7 year periods are often called "weeks" because the Hebrew word Gabriel used means "a week of years".) This gives us a total of 490 years (70 weeks).
When the disciples posed their questions to Jesus, 483 of those years (69 weeks) had come and there were only 7 years (1 week) left. You can imagine their astonishment when He told them that having come so close, just when the end was in sight, the temple and surrounding buildings would all be destroyed. How could this be? The temple was essential to their worship. It had been under construction for 46 years and as I said above was not finished yet. How could it be torn down so completely and then rebuilt again in just 7 years?
It was this astonishment that had led to their questions. They didn't know anything about a Church Age that would cause a 2000 year pause in Daniel's 70 weeks prophecy. Even today, most of us don't understand that the Church Age didn't end the Age of Law, it has just interrupted it seven years short of its scheduled completion. How could they have understood it? (The fact that the Age of Law hasn't ended explains why there will be a Temple erected in Israel soon. They will need one to complete the final 7 years.)
40 days after the Resurrection, even after receiving the Holy Spirit (John 20:22) the disciples were still thinking that the End of the Age was at hand. When Jesus led them up to the Mount of Olives where He would soon ascend to the Father, they asked Him, "Lord are you at this time going to restore the Kingdom to Israel?" Once again He didn't explain anything about the future, but said, "It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority" (Acts 1:7-8).
I've Got A Secret
James revealed the answer to the Apostles for the first time 20 years after the cross.
The whole assembly became silent as they listened to Barnabas and Paul telling about the miraculous signs and wonders God had done among the Gentiles through them. When they finished, James spoke up: "Brothers, listen to me. Simon (Peter) has described to us how God at first showed his concern by taking from the Gentiles a people for himself. The words of the prophets are in agreement with this, as it is written:
" 'After this I will return and rebuild David's fallen tent. Its ruins I will rebuild, and I will restore it, that the remnant of men may seek the Lord, and all the Gentiles who bear my name, says the Lord, who does these things that have been known for ages.' " (Acts 15:12-17)
In effect, James told them Israel was being set aside while the Lord took a people from among the Gentiles for Himself. He was referring to the Church. After He had taken us (literally carried us away) He would turn His attention once again to Israel. If the Lord had taught them these things, James would not have had to explain them. It wasn't that they had heard this and forgotten it. It was that the Lord had never told them.
There's a very simple reason why the Lord never explained the Church Age in any detail. It's because He came to offer the Kingdom to Israel. The theme of His ministry to Israel was, "Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near" (Matt. 4:17). And when He sent the original 12 disciples out on their first missionary trip He told them, "Do not go among the Gentiles or enter any town of the Samaritans. Go rather to the lost sheep of Israel. As you go, proclaim this message: 'The kingdom of heaven has come near' (Matt. 10:5-7). Then there's the strange incident where Jesus refused to even acknowledge the Canaanite woman who begged Him to heal her daughter. When the disciples urged Him to respond to her, He replied, "I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel" (Matt. 15:24).
When the officials asked Him for a definitive sign that He was their Messiah He gave them the sign of Jonah, which He knew would not be clear to them until after the resurrection (Matt. 12:38-40).
My point is that He couldn't very well go around describing what a wonderful blessing was coming to Jews and Gentiles who became a part of the Church when He had already offered Israel the Kingdom. A few days before the crucifixion He warned them that the kingdom would be taken away and given to others (Matt. 21:43) but I'm convinced His offer to Israel was on the table right up to the day He ascended to Heaven, and that's why He was still preaching about the Kingdom of God for 40 days after the resurrection (Acts 1:3). 40 is the number of testing. The sign of Jonah had been fulfilled and Israel was being given 40 days to finally accept Him.
Of course the Lord had always known they would fail the test. That's why Paul could claim he was revealing an age old secret when he told the Church in Ephesus that through the Gospel gentiles were being made heirs together with Israel (Ephes. 3:4-6). Israel's rejection didn't surprise Him.
Seen from this perspective it's clear that the Olivet Discourse is not about the Church. It's the account of the Jewish Messiah speaking on the Mt. of Olives to His Jewish followers about the future of Israel. To underscore this point, in Matt. 24:15-21 He made reference to a Jewish Temple and warned them to flee when they saw the Abomination of Desolation standing there, because it would signal the beginning of the Great Tribulation. He told them to pray their flight wouldn't take place on a Sabbath. That means there will be Old Covenant believers in Judea, the Biblical name for Israel, worshiping in a temple at the End of the Age. They are the only people for whom it would be unlawful to flee on a Sabbath.
These are the only specific references to a people group in the entire passage. They both point to Israel and they're both written in the 2nd person (v. 15, when you see ... v.20, pray that your flight ... ), indicating that the Lord considered the disciples to be representative of Israel. To place the Church in the Olivet Discourse is to make a fundamental error in interpretation. Only the pre-Trib Rapture position avoids this error.
What's That There For?
So why is the Olivet Discourse even in the New Testament if it's not for the Church? There are several good reasons. First, it gives the Church some early warning signals we can use to know how close we're getting to our departure. The birth pangs of Matt. 24:4-8 serve as "nearness indicators" in that the more frequently they occur the closer we are . Also, throughout the entire Church Age the signs the Lord gave to Israel have not been in evidence, primarily because until 1948 there was no Israel. This is what makes the re-birth of the nation the primary sign that the End Times are upon us.
Second, the absence of any reference to the Church shows us that we won't be here during the time He was talking about.
And third, it shows Tribulation believers both inside and outside of Israel what to look for to help maintain their faith that He's coming to end their ordeal.
Neither the Angel Gabriel nor the Lord misled Israel by not mentioning this indeterminate pause between the 69th and 70th weeks of Daniel's prophecy. At least up to the cross and maybe all the way to His Ascension the Lord's offer of a Kingdom to Israel was on the table. Had Israel accepted Jesus as their Messiah, the pause would never have occurred. This could also explain why the Gospel received limited exposure among the Gentiles during and immediately after the Lord's ministry and why it was 20 years after the cross before things like direct Gentile participation in the Church, the doctrines of salvation by grace and eternal security, the pre-tribulation rapture, and the Church's ultimate destiny were introduced.
Clearly the Olivet Discourse was given to and for Israel. No matter what view you hold of the sequence of End Times events, if you've based it on an assumption that the disciples represent the Church in the Olivet Discourse, it's time to re-think your assumption.
Netanyahu to warn Putin not to cross red lines - Herb Keinon - http://www.jpost.com/printarticle.aspx?id=503089
Former National Security Council Advisor Yaakov Amidror says Netanyahu's visit to Sochi is important so that the Russians have an understanding of how Israel will act if its hand is forced.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's primary objective during his upcoming talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin will not be to try to convince the Russians to prevent an Iranian permanent presence in Syria, but rather to let them know what Israel plans to do if Tehran tries to set up such a presence, former National Security Council Advisor Yaakov Amidror said on Tuesday.
Netanyahu is scheduled to fly to Sochi on the Black Sea for a meeting with Putin on Wednesday, returning home the same day. This will be his fourth trip to Moscow in the last 16 months.
The main goal of the meeting, Amidror said, needs to be for the Russians to have a better understanding of Israel's concerns and red lines, and how Israel is likely to react if those red lines are crossed.
"Israel is not coordinating with the Russians, but it's very important for Israel that the Russians understand where Israel stands," he said in a phone call with The Israel Project.
Israel should not try to convince Putin, but rather what is important is to make sure that if Israel is forced to act in the future, "the Russians will not be surprised. They will understand what motivated Israel and why Israel is acting as it will."
Netanyahu, said Amidror, who has sat in on numerous meetings such as these in the past, will bring to Putin all of Israel's "facts, assessments and concerns" so that the Russian leader will be able to take them into account. This way, he continued, if Israel feels compelled to act, the Russians -though they might not agree - will understand why it happened.
Israel has come out clearly against the ceasefire being brokered in Syria between Russia and the United States, fearing that it will enshrine a permanent Iranian military presence in the country. Neither Moscow nor Washington, however, have apparently been moved to alter their positions because of Israel's concerns.
Amidror did not hold out any high hopes that Netanyahu's visit to Sochi will change that situation.
"We can give them our perspective and I think it's important they will have it, but I'm not sure that they will agree with us about the details," he said.
Amidror defined two issues as of critical importance to Israel in the future arrangements in Syria. The first is that Iran will not have the ability to build bases there that will serve as a launching pad against it in the future, and the second is that Syria will not turn into a state through which "game changing" weapons -- including Russian weapons systems -- are moved into the region.
"It should be well understood all over, mainly in Moscow, that Israel will do whatever is needed not to let the Iranians build these bases, and not to let Hezbollah get these weapons systems," he said. "These are the two main concerns for Israel and they should be very clear in this meeting."
Magog Alliance Forming? - Russia, Turkey & Iran - By Meira Svirsky -
The chief of staff of the Iranian military, Mohammad Bagheri, made an "unprecedented" visit to Turkey this week, meeting with Turkey's military chief of staff and marking the first such visit of the highest Iranian military officer since the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran.
A Turkish pro-government newspaper called it a "milestone," noting that such a meeting between the two would never have been possible if the countries weren't making alliances with one another regarding Syria and Iraq.
Since Ankara was forced to make amends with Moscow after shooting down a Russian plane making maneuvers in the Syrian war, Turkey has been towing the Russian party line in the Syrian civil war - and thus, de facto, in an alliance with Russia's ally Iran.
Yet the meeting was about much more -- more than the Sunni/Shia divide and more than Turkey's surreptitious support of ISIS in Iraq (more on that later).
Whatever the difference between these two powers vying for hegemony in the Middle East, a common ground between them is their absolute commitment to making sure the Kurds don't gain autonomy and establish an independent state.
The Kurdish regions of Turkey and Iran span the border between the two countries (and also include parts of Syria and Iraq). Such a state would necessarily be taken out of those regions.
The fact that Kurds from both countries are involved supporting each other over the border has been enough to cause Turkey to build a "security wall" to prevent such cooperation.
The prospect of Kurdish independence for Turkey is so alarming that throughout the regional war, Turkey used the ruse of joining the American coalition against ISIS as an excuse to bomb the Kurds.
Now that America is arming Kurdish forces fighting ISIS - arguably the most effective forces to date combating the brutal terror group - it is worth it for Turkey and Iran to put their differences aside and join forces against what they perceive as ever-growing Kurdish power and world acceptance.
Turkey has much to gain by its alliance with Russia and Iran. It is in the closing stages of securing the powerful S-400 missile defense system from Russia, and it recently signed a $17-billion agreement with Russian companies to supply Turkey with much-needed oil they are no longer able to buy at contraband prices from ISIS.
They are engaged as well in business with Iran, having signed large contracts with an Iranian company to supply them with natural gas.
No one should be surprised at the increased and "unprecedented" cooperation between Turkey and Iran. When it comes to advancing its own agenda, Turkey will not hesitate to make alliances even with those who might be their natural enemies.
With Turkey's move away from the United States, Turkey has significantly less constraints in advancing its extremist Islamist agenda. Certainly Iran (or for that matter Russia) will not complain while Turkey crushes the Kurds, injects massive funding into Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, and pumps up Qatar in its current dispute with the Gulf and Arab states over Qatari terror funding.
Turkey's alliance with Iran only lends it additional stability and throws more weight behind these dangerous causes.
Hegemony for the region can wait.
Israel 'Gravely Concerned' U.S. Will Fail to Ensure Iran's Evacuation From Syria - by Deborah Danan -
Israel is "gravely concerned" at the alleged failure on the part of the U.S. to secure an agreement to end the civil war in Syria that would see all Iranian military presence eliminated from the country, an Israeli security expert said on Monday.
Ronen Bergman, investigative journalist and military analyst for Israel's Yedioth Aharonot newspaper, reported the news follows a visit by a senior delegation of Israeli defense officials to Washington to meet with U.S. intelligence chiefs, National Security Council officials and President Donald Trump's special negotiator to the Middle East Jason Greenblatt.
The delegation, which included Mossad Director Yossi Cohen, Military Intelligence Directorate (MID) Chief Maj. Gen. Herzi Halevi and Israel's Ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dermer, "presented sensitive, credible and highly disturbing intelligence information" pertaining to Iran's presence in Syria, intelligence officials said.
"We rushed here to warn of the deployment of Hezbollah, Iranian and Syrian forces; to explain exactly what's going on there. Without a significant change in your position, if you don't become more involved, tougher and more aggressive, you will leave the Middle East to the Iranians, under Russian auspices," Bergman cited the Israelis as telling their American counterparts.
According to intelligence sources, a final status agreement brokered between Syria, Russia and the U.S. is on the horizon. American-Russian cooperation in the last few months has brought a steady decline in fighting in the embattled country, and even the influence of terror groups like the Islamic State has waned considerably.
However, despite what ostensibly seemed like a friendly visit, the Israelis could not persuade the Americans to demand the evacuation of Iranian and Hezbollah forces from Syria. Israel fears Iran will expand its presence - including implementing missile systems - to the Syrian side of the Golan. Iranian presence in the country currently includes some 500 soldiers, 5,000 Hezbollah militants and several thousand more from other Shiite proxies, all under the stewardship of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps' (IRGC) elite Quds Force.
According to Bergman, the delegation said upon their return over the weekend that while they were in the U.S. they had observed "a kind of embarrassment and lack of a clear position in the American administration with regards to the nature of the future agreement and disagreements on what should and what should not be done in Syria to bring quiet to the entire region. As far as they're concerned, the matter is still wide open."
Israel's concern is compounded by President Donald Trump's domestic challenges as well as unfolding events with North Korea, leaving the Jewish state worried that Washington may choose not to go head to head with Russia and Syria on the Iranian question.
Israel intends to send another defense delegation to Moscow to present its case to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Nearing Midnight: Ezekiel 38-39 and Nukes - Terry James -
Today's sense of impending nuclear exchange hearkens somewhat back to when I was a teenager. I remember sitting in the high school library looking at a daily newspaper. The headline was about Nikita Khrushchev, the Soviet premiere, threatening the use of hydrogen bombs if his plans for eastern Europe were resisted by the West.
Rumor had it amongst us high schoolers that nuclear war would commence on this particular Friday I was in the library thinking on such possibility. The world would end this very day, so the tale was told.
I guess I was sort of into issues and events of the times, just as I am these many decades later. Although a kid, I was concerned, but certainly couldn't let on to my fellow students-especially not my macho pals, who all were saying "bring it on" to the Ruskies.
They seemed to have no fear or regard for what would happen if ol' Khrushchev decided to nuke America. I did think about it and was, frankly, quite worried.
Now we have a 30-year-old, north Korean despot even uglier than was Nikita, threatening to send his newly developed, nuclear-tipped missiles to Guam and even to somewhere within the U.S. homeland. I haven't paid much attention during the current "crisis" to the threat, even though issued by a true lunatic rather than the calculating, totally aware Khrushchev-i.e., the Soviet dictator realized what it would mean for him, personally, should he be so foolhardy as to initiate nuclear war. I'm not certain Kim Jong-un has the same degree of realization.
Being three-quarters of a century old currently might make the difference in my degree of concern-then, in 1958, versus now. Even though sense of my own mortality at 16 was almost nonexistent, I was fearful. The present threat has many people today thinking like I did back then. The current nuclear threat doesn't concern me at all, although my knowledge of my own mortality now is with me every waking hour.
What's the difference in the young Terry's concern and the old Terry's lack thereof, do you think? It must be more than merely naïveté about geopolitical, diplomatic interaction that might bring on or avert nuclear catastrophe that caused me at 16 to worry. It can't just be that I can now, through reasoning ability guided by experience, assuage fear because I'm much wiser at this advanced age about how nuclear-armed states always pull up short of using those weapons of mass destruction.
One thing sure...I have no such confidence in those human agents who have their fingers on the nuclear triggers. I have no doubt whatsoever that one day those triggers will be pulled.
Preparation is underway in every direction one looks. Nuclear war is looming like the mystical Sword of Damocles over this powder-keg world.
Pakistan and India threaten each other with their nuclear stockpiles. The big, nuclear-muscle boys-America, China, and Russia-look warily at each other through satellite-computer guardians 24/7.
Israel stands ready at all times to invoke the Samson Option. If it looks like the use of nuclear weapons is all that will stop an attack that would mean the end of the Jewish state, they will go to any such length necessary.
And this brings us to the title of our commentary today: Ezekiel 38-39 and Nukes.
Iran stands on the brink of developing nuclear capability even more threatening than that of the North Koreans. Previous U.S. presidential administrations-particularly those of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama-made "deals" they promised would make the whole world safer from nuclear proliferation-from nuclear war. The deals they made with both North Korea and with the Iranian regimes, however, have brought us to now having to act perhaps precipitously, or else face certain nuclear war in the not-too-distant future.
Iran, as Bible prophecy students know, is the nation that occupies that area that was ancient Persia. Persia is foretold by the prophet Ezekiel to mount an all-out assault against Israel as part of the Gog-Magog coalition.
It is strongly expected that North Korea has provided the Iranians with nuclear warheads or with the technology necessary to produce nuclear weapons. Iran is far advanced in missile technology and it is only a matter of time until they will be able to fit nuclear warheads to those missiles-presuming they haven't done so already.
The Trump administration has led the way in imposing sanctions on Iran to stop development of their missile program. If it can't be halted, Israel will almost certainly at some point take military action to try to destroy Iran's nuclear development capability.
America's most recent action has caused the Iranian regime to ramp up its call for the destruction of America and Israel. The following tells of that rogue nation's anger:
DUBAI - Iran's parliament gave initial approval on Sunday to a bill to boost spending on Tehran's missile program and the elite Revolutionary Guards in retaliation for new sanctions imposed by the United States.
Lawmakers overwhelmingly approved the outlines of the bill to "counter America's terrorist and adventurist actions" as some chanted "Death to America," the state broadcaster IRIB reported.
The measure came in retaliation to legislation passed by US Congress and signed by US President Donald Trump in early August to impose new sanctions on Iran over its missile program. ("Iran eyes more funds for missiles, troops after US sanctions-Middle East," Jerusalem Post, 8/13/17)
With one of the primary Gog-Magog force members about to go nuclear, there should be reason for greatly increased worry. Like the North Koreans, they are a regime blood-vowed to destroy its enemy. In the case of North Korea, it is South Korea-and America-that constitutes the enemies that inspire the blood vow. With Iran, of course, it's Israel and America that must be obliterated.
However, in the case of Iran, we know from prophecy that they are going to act on their blood-oath. In North Korea, if they are a factor in bringing the world to nuclear Armageddon, it will be much later, in consort with the "kings of the east" of Revelation chapters 9 and 16.
So, why am I the calm (old) Terry as opposed to the 16-year-old, fearful Terry in the high school library, reading magazines and newspapers instead of studying in study hall? The danger is imminently more grave now than then.
The answer, of course, is Bible prophecy. The old Terry knows and believes what God's Word has to say about what will be the outcome of all this nuclear saber-rattling.
Bible prophecy tells me that Iran is not destroyed by the time of the God-Magog attack, which is yet future. Israel is not destroyed at that time-or ever.
Bible prophecy tells me that Iran, Russia, Turkey, and all the others of that force come in a conventional -not nuclear attack. Something has obviously happened by that time to cause nuclear weaponry to not be used-at least not in a world-rending way.
The other nations, we are told by Ezekiel in chapters 38 and 39, are there, too. They send only a diplomatic note of protest when they see that great, satanic, Gog-led force descend toward Israel. Nuclear weaponry, again it is obvious, hasn't yet been used in a world-destroying way by that time.
Again, Jesus said it will be business as usual at the time of His "revealing." That is, people will be doing business as usual, according to the Lord's Days of Noah/Days of Lot prophecy (Matthew 24:36-42 and Luke 17:26-30). At the time of the Rapture, therefore, there will have been no world-shattering nuclear conflict-or major catastrophic event on a global scale, either.
If only that worried, 16-year-old Terry had studied Ezekiel 38-39 in that study hall in 1958...
The Media's Glaring Double Standards on Violence and Hate -Michael Brown -
So I don't have to repeat myself throughout the article, I'll say things loudly and clearly at the outset.
The KKK, white supremacists, and neo-Nazis are evil. I deplore what they stand for and denounce it - as a follower of Jesus, as a Jew, as an American, and as a human being. I pray that they would repent and find mercy from God, and to the extent that the media exposes their lies, I applaud the media.
But I cannot applaud the media when it comes to its reporting of acts of hatred and violence on the radical left. Their double-standard is glaring, ugly, and inexcusable.
You see, the question is not, "Is Antifa as bad as the KKK? Are radical leftists as evil as neo-Nazis?"
Rather, the question is, "Should the media highlight acts of hatred and violence when carried out by the left?" And, "Should the media call out political leaders who do not denounce these acts?"
I'm not talking about Charlottesville here or making a moral comparison between the groups involved. I'm talking about a consistent pattern of dangerous words and deeds from the radical left, most of which get scant attention from the media.
Shall we do some math?
Over the last 12 months, how many campuses have succumbed to pressure from white supremacists and canceled a talk by a well-known liberal? Can't think of any?
Well, let's keep going. How many campuses have even received threats of harassment or disruption from white supremacists should they try to host such a talk? Still somewhere around zero?
In contrast, over the last 12 months, how many campuses have succumbed to pressure from radical leftists and canceled a talk by a well-known conservative? If my memory serves me right, Berkeley did it twice (once with Milo and once with Ann Coulter), while other campuses, like De Paul, refused to allow Ben Shapiro to speak. And all this because of security concerns - meaning, because of threats of disruption from the left. Toronto University just canceled a "free speech" event featuring Prof. Jordan Peterson and others because of security concerns as well.
It looks like the left can get pretty nasty too. (For more examples, see here.)
Author Charles Murray, along with Prof. Allison Stangler, who invited him, was physically attacked by protesters at Middlebury College after his speech. "One threw a stop sign with a heavy concrete base in front of the car Murray was in, and several others rocked, pounded, and jumped on the vehicle. One protester pulled Stanger's hair and injured her neck. She was taken to a hospital, where she was treated and released."
Heather Mac Donald's speech at Claremont was shut down when protesters blocked entrance to the building, after which she said, "This is not just my loss of free speech. These students are exercising brute force against their fellow students to prevent them from hearing me live."
And what were the protesters chanting? "[Expletive] the police, KKK."
Where was the consistent outcry from the leftwing media? How many hours were devoted to covering this? How many liberal politicians were called on to denounce it?
More recently, when protesters pulled down a Confederate statue in Durham, North Carolina, NPR reported that they were chanting, "'No KKK, No Fascist USA."
Actually, they were chanting, "No cops, no KKK, no fascist USA!"
Why did NPR omit "No cops"? What were they hiding? Why not make clear that, in the eyes of these vandals, the cops are no different than the KKK? (Listen to NPR's audio here.)
As evil as the KKK and neo-Nazis are, they were not the ones carrying out these acts of hatred, violence, and vandalism. All this is coming from the radical left. Why, then, put so much focus on the so-called alt-right and so little (if any) on the radical left?
Here are some more specifics.
As reported by the Daily Caller, "Antifa's violence ranges from stabbing a police horse in the neck to beating people with bike locks. Antifa physically assaulted a reporter with The Daily Caller News Foundation in January and a search on YouTube reveals hours of footage displaying Antifa violence from protests across the nation. Antifa thugs are additionally known for assaulting police officers and chasing down fleeing people in order to beat them."
How much of this was covered by CNN?
The Caller continues, "CNN also fails to mention that Antifa was declared a domestic terrorist group by New Jersey's Office of Homeland Security and that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security stated certain actions from Antifa were acts of "domestic terrorism" in a memo from March."
How many of you knew that? Antifa branded a domestic terrorist group by an official government security agency?
As for Antifa's handiwork at Berkeley when Milo was scheduled to speak, "Antifa groups . . . rioted, destroyed property, beat people with flagpoles and pepper-sprayed a women [sic]."
I guess it's not all about peace and love and equality and tolerance?
And this is not just taking place in America. How about the attack last December on the Australia Christian Lobby building in Australia? As reported by the Australian, "The man accused of driving a burning van laden with gas bottles into the Australian Christian Lobby headquarters was a gay activist who disliked the group because of its 'position on sexuality' and had searched online how to make plastic explosives and a pressure-cooker bomb."
Shades of Floyd Lee Corkins trying to carry out an act of mass murder at the FRC headquarters in DC in 2012, inspired to do so by the radical-left SPLC.
But it gets worse.
Both the Washington Post and the Nation carried pieces this week calling for physical violence against the alt-right, with the Post headline calling for "direct action" and the Nation headline reading, "Not Rights but Justice: It's Time to Make Nazis Afraid Again."
With this logic, even if the "Unite the Right" marchers in Charlottesville had not engaged in any violence, their ideologies are so evil that they should be violently attacked. Is this the America you want to live in?
And let's not forget that, for years now, those of us who lovingly oppose LGBT activism have been branded Nazis, KKK, and worse. Perhaps we should be subject to violence too?
Perhaps the gay activists who held up signs in 2008 calling for Christians to be thrown to the lions will get their wish?
Without a doubt, the media should report on something like the "Unite the Right" march that drew 500 militants to Charlottesville. And with one voice, every American should denounce it. Let those 500 be shamed and isolated, and let their ideology be exposed.
But the media should give equal attention to radical leftists who engage in violent words and acts in other settings, be it Antifa activists vandalizing a campus, student protesters assaulting a professor, or Black Lives Matter marchers chanting (about cops), "Pigs in a blanket, fry 'em like bacon."
If the leftwing media wants to regain even a shred of credibility, it will have to step up its game. Lives are literally at stake.
Daily Jot: We are all still here post-eclipse - Bill Wilson -
After enduring the lead up to the eclipse of the sun in North America where many "Christians" once again used a natural occurring event to predict extra-Biblical, emotional and self-indulgent theories, and at the risk of offending some folks, I have to write today that we are still here. Your day is going on. No one was raptured. There were no "out of the norm" mega-disasters. The end of the world did not happen. Fact is, if people read their scriptures in context, they would have a good idea of what to expect regarding the prophetic future. Unfortunately, there are many, many false teachers who take verses out of context to support their theories. Also unfortunate is that many are well-respected for their falsehoods.
These same false teachers will come up with some excuse about why what they predicted didn't happen. People will believe them and all will go on until the next time. And the cycle will start all over again. After yesterday's Jot, I heard about this person or that who had said this or that, and that I should consider what they said. Now think about those kind of statements. I quoted scripture in its context about what would happen in the Day of the Lord regarding the sun, moon and sky--Scripture in its context, the myriad of verses in the Bible describing what the Lord gave about the same event. These were from real prophets documented in Holy Scriptures, not false teachers conjecturing about their theories.
Yes, celestial events are of God. Scriptures discuss the heavens, and ancient Jewish sages interpreted eclipses as omens providing insight to God's will. Overall, eclipses are a time to pray, and to do God's will, that you may have nothing to fear. Jeremiah 10:2 says, "Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them." This is far different than those ministries that conjure up fear and intrigue to hold influence over folks and to keep them contributing. What does the Bible say about itching ears? 2 Timothy 4:3 says, "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables."
Ephesians 4:14 exhorts, "That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive." We don't want to be that person who is just seeking the latest craze in Christianity. We want to be grounded in the Word of God and have understanding that we may edify others and provide truth in love. As Solomon said that there is nothing new under the sun, let's not fall for the extra-Biblical seducers. Let us seek the Lord with all of our heart having understanding of his Word and Holy Spirit discernment that we might not be led astray, and that we may provide proof of our testimony to others.
Daily Devotion: A Heavenly Perspective - By Greg Laurie -
"These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world. " -John 16:33
When Mary and Martha found out about how ill their brother, Lazarus, was, they sent word to Jesus and simply said, "Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick" (John 11:3). In other words, "Lord, remember us-Mary, Martha, and Lazarus here in Bethany? We're Your friends. You hang out at our home whenever You're in town. Remember Martha? She's the one who makes those killer meals. Mary is the one who sits at Your feet. And Lazarus? He's Your friend, Lord. Your friend is sick."
They probably thought Jesus would just speak the word, and Lazarus would be healed instantaneously. Or perhaps He would rush back and lay His hand on Lazarus' fevered brow.
Instead we read that Jesus delayed His arrival. In fact, when Jesus heard about Lazarus, He said, "This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it" (verse 4). Although Jesus loved Mary, Martha, and Lazarus, He stayed where He was for the next two days.
You know the rest of the story. Jesus allowed Lazarus to die, but then He raised him from the dead. The point was that God wanted to bring greater glory to His name.
It is true that God loves us and works all things together for good. But the problem arises with our definition of how God should show that love and what we feel "good" ought to be in our lives. We think that good means no pain, no suffering, no hardship-that it means a problem-free life.
Our definition of good is what benefits us in the here and now, not in the by and by. We are interested in what will benefit us temporarily, but God is interested in what will benefit us eternally.
FROM THE HEART
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