Prophecy Update Newsletter
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
The Coming Sever Year Tribulation - By Pastor Mike Taylor -
7 "But when you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be troubled; for such things must happen, but the end is not yet.
8 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be earthquakes in various places, and there will be famines and troubles. These are the beginnings of sorrows.
9 "But watch out for yourselves, for they will deliver you up to councils, and you will be beaten in the synagogues. You will be brought before rulers and kings for My sake, for a testimony to them." .. (Mark 13:7-9)
There have been many prophecy teachers that have tried to explain what the coming Tribulation will be like. Many believe that we are in the tribulation right now. Surely with all the Christian persecution, the Middle East murders of the followers of Jesus Christ, the beheadings, the crucifixions, and the systematic purging of anything that looks like an aberration from what is defined as radical Islam and victims of Communist countries, this must be the start of the tribulation. But they fail to understand what Jesus tried to convey when he spoke with the apostles 2000 years ago what this time period will be like.
I'm going to take a stab at trying to paint a picture for you of what the 7 years known as the Tribulation will be like, from scripture that describes a period so horrible, so demonically inspired that it will be the worst time in all of mankind's history that Jesus said in Matthew 24 in the Olivet Discourse:
21 "For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be.
22 And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect's sake those days will be shortened."(Matthew 24:21-22)
Men and women of our world fail to differentiate between tribulation that has always been brought against mankind for the belief in the Gospel of Jesus Christ down through the last 2000 years, and the Tribulation that Jesus speaks of. There has always been death and destruction by evil men that Satan has inspired to persecute the church of Jesus Christ. We have read of these crucifixions, beheadings, and people being burned alive at the stake by the "dark age" religious authorities, and pagan nations that condemned Christianity as an affront to their dictatorship.
Much of the confusion about the Rapture of Christ's Church, His Bride, and when it occurs could easily be solved if we clarify what actually happens during this seven-year period. It is not just tribulation as the church has experienced during the past 2,000 years. Saints have been martyred by the thousands, sawn asunder, fed to the lions, had their own children slaughtered before their eyes, and suffered untold deprivations. But what is coming upon the earth in possibly a few short years, or even sooner, will pale the time past of the evils of men killing other men. In short, it will be a thousands of times worse. The coming destruction of mankind will be the Middle East we are seeing right now on steroids. To think that the "Tribulation" is just more of the same type of martyrdom we have seen in the past, is to miss the point of what Jesus was talking about and what scripture testifies that this time will be about. I can't fully comprehend or grasp (and I don't want to, because you would have to live it) what will be evident during this terrible time of man's last gasp of trying to rule himself and failing miserably. Let us make a short list of reasons that could possibly be coming soon to a community near you, worldwide. When Satan is allowed to rule over this earth, even for this short period, the dwellers on this earth can expect the following:
1. The number one reason, is that Satan will be cast down to earth and will be physically and paranormally here for the duration of the 7 years we know as the Tribulation.
12 "Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time." (Revelation 12:12)
Satan has hated the Jewish people, as through them came Jesus Christ, and for the last 2000 years, he has raged against the Christian Bride of Christ. He has beaten up and ravaged the people of God, both Jew and Christian with a diabolically hatred that has only grown stronger as the end grows ever closer. But the last 7 years, when Satan is cast down, his rage will be unrestrained and frantic as he knows his time is very short. The Holy Spirit will be drawn back to allow him full sway over rebellious mankind and to attempt to destroy all human beings on earth.
2. Coupled with Satan being thrown down, he will have at his disposal the ability to lead billions of demons forces to torment men upon the earth.
3. As briefly mentioned in the first point, the Holy Spirit will step aside to allow Satan full sway in the destruction of mankind.
7 "For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way.
8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. \
9 The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders,
10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved." (2nd Thessalonians 2:7-10)
4. Demonic forces will be allowed to take on grotesque shapes and forms and present themselves to torment and destroy sinful men. I envision the return of the Nephilim, a hybrid of half man, half demon that in Noah's days were giants that enslaved and cannibalized other men.
5. Disease and plagues will be mutated into dark forms and there will be no cure for these diseases unleashed on the unsuspecting earth dwellers.
6. Churches will not exist and it will be suicide to meet with anyone to worship the True God of Heaven, as new converts to Christ will be hunted down for extinction.
7. Anyone taking the Mark of the Beast will take on Satan's nature and will be the enemy of all who accept Jesus Christ during this time, and will cause many to be killed, even their own family members.
8. Those who refuse to take the Mark of the Beast will be brutalized, raped, tortured and possibly cannibalized after their death.
9. It will possibly be illegal for men and women to marry, as homosexuality will be worldwide, and the family outlawed.
10. With all the disease and plagues being rampant, hospitals and clinics will be extinct, or overrun with cases, and unable to meet the demand.
11. Famine and starvation will be universal. No one will be exempt.
12. The earth will become a God forsaken hellish place to live and to die upon.
THE WRATH OF ALMIGHTY GOD
In past messages, I've tried to convey another aspect of this hellish time, when Satan will have unlimited access to destroy the dwellers of the earth, known as the nations. The Tribulation will be bad, so horrible beyond description, but will be even more horrifying to those who are actually alive on earth at this time. Oh, it will be so much more terrifying beyond your wildest nightmare, as a Righteous and Holy God has unleashed all the power of His might upon a rebellious mankind who have rejected Him and His payment for their sins, His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ and His atonement written in His own blood, that God's fury is unleashed full strength.
"Then the sky receded as a scroll when it is rolled up, and every mountain and island was moved out of its place.
15 And the kings of the earth, the great men, the rich men, the commanders, the mighty men, every slave and every free man, hid themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains,
16 and said to the mountains and rocks, "Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb!
17 For the great day of His wrath has come, and who is able to stand?" (Revelation 6:15-17)
But this is just the beginning. It gets exponentially worse as time drags on and millions will die under the wrath of God.
This period is the time of God's wrath. The only precedents in history to this time are the worldwide flood of Noah's generation and the destruction of the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. Of course, this event of God's wrath will be the ultimate judgment of wickedness and will certainly surpass those two prior events as named above. The first time, destruction was by water. This time the destruction will be by fire...Jesus made it clear in Matthew 24 that this is the finale of judgment against the vileness of human sin.
OUR GOD IS A CONSUMING FIRE
The Old Testament prophets wrote of this time period through Holy Spirit inspiration when Isaiah wrote:
27"Behold, the name of the LORD cometh from far, burning with his anger, and the burden thereof is heavy: his lips are full of indignation, and his tongue as a devouring fire:
28And his breath, as an overflowing stream, shall reach to the midst of the neck, to sift the nations with the sieve of vanity: and there shall be a bridle in the jaws of the people, causing them to err.
29Ye shall have a song, as in the night when a holy solemnity is kept; and gladness of heart, as when one goeth with a pipe to come into the mountain of the LORD, to the mighty One of Israel.
30the LORD shall cause his glorious voice to be heard, and shall shew the lighting down of his arm, with the indignation of his anger, and with the flame of a devouring fire, with scattering, and tempest, and hailstones."(Isaiah 30:27-30).
And again Isaiah prophesied:
"Who is this that cometh from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah? this that is glorious in his apparel, traveling in the greatness of his strength?
I that speak in righteousness, mighty to save. Wherefore art thou red in thine apparel, and thy garments like him that for I will tread them in mine anger, and trample them in my fury; and their blood shall be sprinkled upon my garments, and I will stain all my raiment.
For the day of vengeance is in mine heart, and the year of my redeemed is come. And I looked, and there was none to help; and I wondered that there was none to uphold: therefore mine own arm brought salvation unto me; and my fury, it upheld me.
And I will tread down the people in mine anger, and make them drunk in my fury, and I will bring down their strength to the earth" treadeth in the wine fat?
I have trodden the wine press alone; and of the people there was none with me:"(Isaiah 63:1-6).
This language has no connection with the tribulation that has been present from the beginning of the Church Age, even up until now. God Almighty will tread down evil mankind, as wine is pressed in a wine vat. God will march through His creation and destroy those who have rejected His mercy and His grace and have accepted the Mark of the Beast. His judgment will be for the rejection of his perfect judicial opportunity for man's redemption and His cup of wrath will be full to the brim of His righteous indignation for their lawlessness. God will purify this earth from either end of the earth and back in man's blood. God will wipe all rebellion and sinful men from this earth leaving no one, but a remnant that He supernaturally protects from the Anti-Christ.
Many will be saved during this time, but for their belief they will be killed in many terrible ways. The death and destruction will be world wide and the only ones that will live any length of time, are the ones who take a mark of the Beast, and their life will be short lived and will be doomed for all eternity and separated into a devil's hell.
God will judge the world because they rejected His Son and His ultimate love to man. Jesus describes this judgment Himself,
"And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said, The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,
And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come.
Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage.
But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise: And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them. But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city" (Matthew 22:1-7).
If you closely read scripture that describes the scene of God's righteous indignation, then you get a glimpse of the carnage that will be on this earth, when by calculation of the billions that live on this earth right now...(estimated at over 7.7 billion people). 80% will die in 7 short years, with the majority dying in the last 3.5 years, known as the Great Tribulation. Can you even imagine of over 6 billion people dying in that short a time by untold acts of violence and environmental disasters? I can't and I don't want to, as I don't plan to be a witness to it for those years of man's complete hell on earth.
When the picture of this event Jesus called "The Great Tribulation" is understood Biblically, then it bears no resemblance to the present tribulation that all believers endure to some degree. The gas chambers of Hitler were hell on earth and snuffed out millions of lives. At least six million Christians died, along with six million Jews. But this judgment to come is not the death of men to yet be raised in resurrection to face God in judgment. This Tribulation is the wrath of God Himself to which there are no claims of higher appeal.
I can't even imagine what the Jewish people went through as they were systematically slaughtered and I hurt for them. But to have evil rampant in this world that you will live in, and have even God Himself raining judgment down on the top of your head makes your life very short and full of misery and pain. The environment will become completely toxic with rivers and streams of blood, water becoming bitter, people dying by the millions and billions until it finally takes your own life, then I hope your imaginations can grasp the hell on earth I'm describing.
GOD'S WRATH IS AGAINST UNGODLY MEN
"For we are not appointed to wrath, but to receive salvation through Jesus Christ our Lord". (1st Thessalonians 5:9)
"Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth." (Revelation 3:10)
To those who are Pre-Tribulation rapture deniers, I ask you to show me in your Bible where God's wrath comes against His servants who are living for Him. Save yourself some trouble, as there are none. There is no place in Scriptures that this day can be identified to affect the Godly servant of the Lord. Whenever the First Testament prophets spoke of judgment, they always showed that God provided a haven for the righteous. Isaiah spoke of "a day of indignation." He clearly revealed the provision of the Lord for the saints,
"Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead. Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast. For, behold, the LORD cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain" (Isaiah 26:19-21).
Scripture after scripture in your Bible proves that God never, ever subjects His chosen servants to His righteous wrath...and I mean NEVER. Malachi made the same argument when he wrote how God provides for His own:
"Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name. And they shall be mine, saith the LORD of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him. Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not" (Malachi 3:16-18).
PRE -TRIB DENIERS
I have had individuals email me and chastise me for giving Christian's a false hope, that when the Tribulation comes, they will not be prepared. Let me explain something to those who scoff at the scriptural sound doctrine of God removing His children from this earth before the 1st seal of Revelation chapter 6 is broken and His wrath is unleashed. Let us think logically here for a moment as I give you a scenario and tell me what the answer is.
According to our Bibles, Jesus will come and the dead in Christ will rise first, at the last trump, and we who are alive and remain will join those who have been raised to join them in the clouds...right? (1st Thessalonians 4:15-17).
If this happens at the end of the Tribulation, and Jesus returns to do battle with those who are gathered in the valley of Megiddo and destroys all rebellion on this earth, and all who have taken the mark of the Beast, (as there will be no middle ground) will be destroyed, then my question that I have proposed many times is, who will go into the Millennium as mortal beings to repopulate the earth? See the problem? The answer is NO one will be left mortal...the only doctrine that makes sense of the return of Jesus Christ before the Tribulation even starts, as those who survive the Tribulation are saints that escaped the wrath of the Anti-Christ, or those God supernaturally protected in the wilderness according to Revelation chapter 12:14-17 and they may be all Jewish. Those are the ones who go into the Millennium alive and mortal to repopulate the earth. Now back to the subject at hand, the horror of the coming Tribulation.
SEVEN BOWLS OF THE WRATH OF GOD
If the scenario that I have painted for you isn't bad enough, and if you're a fence sitter and have not made a decision for Jesus Christ, as Lord and Savior, then read Revelation chapter 16 if you really want to get into a funk which describes:
18 "And there were voices, and thunders, and lightnings; and there was a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great.
19 And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath.
20 And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found.
21 And there fell upon men a great hail out of heaven, every stone about the weight of a talent: and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail; for the plague thereof was exceeding great." (Revelation 16:18-21)
Are you starting to get the picture? This earth will literally be hell on earth, where mortal men will die by the millions daily, every day for 7 years. It will be a most ghastly and horrific time that my words cannot even begin to address in any adjectives that conveys the extreme pain and suffering that men will do to one another in their evil ways, and a Holy God who will purge this earth of every sinful, rebellious man and woman left alive on this earth. It will be near total destruction that Jesus said, if it were allowed to continue to its climax, "no flesh would be saved, but for the elect (tribulation saints) the days would be shortened". (Matthew 24:22) God will rescue the last remaining humans alive to prevent man totally destroying the righteous remnant left.
Now some will say, "Hey, Pastor, are you trying to preach hell fire and brimstone?"...my answer is yes, to a point. The intent is to get a sane individual to weigh and think upon what I'm describing. No sane individual that values their own mortal life would want to live through what I'm describing briefly and live out its details in real time. I really do hope I scare the "living daylights out of you" or as some say tongue in cheek, "Scaring hell right out of you", as that is what mankind left on this earth is headed for, hell on earth.
If I was living this horror that's coming, I would have prayed someone would have scared me enough for me to think on my eternal future. Are you thinking about it? What is the answer to avoid such a horrible end of one's life? It's right in front of you, if you have your bible in your lap..His name is Jesus!!
"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him, should NOT perish, but have everlasting life.
17,God sent not His Son to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be save." (John 3:16-17)
"Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved. (his name is Jesus)(Acts 4:12,)
"Who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began," (2nd Timothy 1:9)
"Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned."(Mark 16:16,)
"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Lest any man should boast."(Ephesians 2:8-9 )
God our Father is long suffering not willing that any should perish, but also is a Holy and just God that will repay those who have rejected His free gift given in the death and resurrection of His Son, Jesus Christ. I will close with a scripture that identifies our God who is a God of love, but a God of judgment when His righteous wrath finally is poured out on this earth..and my friend, it is soon. Paul the apostle echoes Isaiah when he spoke of God as a consuming fire:
"See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven:
26: Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven.
27:And this word, Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain.
28:Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:
29: For our God is a consuming Fire"( Hebrews 12: 25-29)
I pray I have shaken you, made you feel uncomfortable, and unsettled in your mind and spirit while in your refusal of the free gift of grace given by God, because my friend, the coming Tribulation will be a horror that I pray you miss out finding out about. Repent and turn to Jesus while the time and chance is available this side of the Tribulation. Jesus could come any moment and without warning.
8 "But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;
9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.
13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." (Romans 10:8-13)
This is Pastor Mike Taylor, pleading for your acceptance of the free gift of our Lord Jesus Christ and your salvation. If I can be of any assistance, either in counseling, prayer, or just a friendly, listening ear, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org , God bless you all, TILL WE MEET AT JESUS FEET
Only Matter Of Time Before China's Invasion Rehearsal Of Taiwan Becomes Reality - Gordon Chang -
China, violating previous understandings, has been sending large numbers of fighter aircraft and bombers into Taiwan's airspace this month.
At the same time, China's ruling Communist Party is issuing threats. The flights of military aircraft are not warnings, the Communist Party's Global Times newspaper stated in an editorial on September 18. "They are rehearsals on taking over Taiwan. What is needed is a political reason that can turn them into real battle to smash Taiwan independence forces."
Fortunately, bad weather is coming. The November-through-January period is not conducive to conducting invasions across the Taiwan Strait. Nonetheless, China is clearly gearing itself for war.
Beijing calls the island "sacred" Chinese territory, but Taiwan has never been part of communist China, the "People's Republic." In fact, Taiwan has never been formally recognized as part of any Chinese state. People on the island, in survey after survey, overwhelming consider themselves "Taiwanese," not "Chinese."
Beijing nevertheless insists it has sovereignty over Taiwan, which formally calls itself the Republic of China. The People's Republic has been sending planes near Taiwan's territory to make a point.
Last month, the message was directed at Washington. While U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar visited Taiwan's capital, Taipei, China ordered aircraft to fly near the island.
This month, China's incursions have been larger. On the September 18, Beijing sent 18 aircraft across the median line, which divides the Taiwan Strait in two. The following day, 19 Chinese aircraft, including nuclear-capable H-6 bombers, flew into Taiwan airspace. The Chinese military in the past has flown H-6s on provocative "island encirclement patrols."
The large incursions on the 18th were especially significant. A Chinese fighter pilot got on the radio to deny that there was a median line, which for years both sides had respected to avoid accidental contact. The pilot, breaking practice, also made a political statement, calling Taiwan a "pawn" of "foreign forces."
Analysts wondered whether the belligerent transmissions were authorized or just the act of a rogue pilot. They did not have to wait long to find out. On September 21, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin announced, "there is no so-called center line in the Taiwan Strait."
Since then, the situation has deteriorated. When U.S. Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment Keith Krach visited the island to attend the memorial service for former Taiwanese president Lee Teng-hui, known in China as the "godfather of Taiwan secessionism" and everywhere else as "Mr. Democracy," China's planes again flew to Taiwan's side of the median line.
Now, Beijing is sending aircraft near Taiwan "almost every day" and directing them to approach in all four directions.
At the same time, the Chinese are ramping up the rhetoric. "The U.S. and Taiwan must not misjudge the situation, or believe the exercise is a bluff," stated the same Global Times editorial. "Should they continue to make provocations, a war will inevitably break out."
"Deployment of the U.S. army to Taiwan means the start of a cross-Straits war," another editorial from the paper announced.
Ominously, Hu Xijin, the Global Times editor, wrote that China is "morally justified" to wage war on Taiwan.
"Hu Xijin is not just urging China to commence a war to murder millions of Taiwanese, he wants China to be able to kill millions of Americans as well," wrote China military analyst Richard Fisher in the Taipei Times on September 21.
Fisher, a senior fellow of the Virginia-based International Assessment and Strategy Center, told Gatestone on September 26 that Beijing "may not just yet have the overall ability to invade Taiwan," but it is "repeating dangerous military exercises" to "terrorize" Taiwan and "frighten" America.
In short, the Chinese leadership, by sending aircraft close to Taiwan, is risking an incident. In addition, as Beijing increases the chances of an encounter it is, with propaganda releases, justifying taking lives.
One explanation is that China's leader needs a victory fast. The People's Liberation Army grabbed Indian territory in early May in Ladakh in the Himalayas while India's troops were unprepared for the surprise attack.
Since late August, India has recovered lost ground and, in the process, humiliated the Chinese, who have proved incapable of counterattacking. The prospect of further advances against fierce Indian troops is not high.
Especially after India, Xi Jinping looks exposed politically. Since becoming the Communist Party's general secretary in late 2012, he has accumulated almost unprecedented power, so he now has complete accountability. There is, inconveniently for him, no one else to blame for debacles. Furthermore, he has changed China's political system by raising the costs of failure.
Xi, therefore, knows that should he fail, he could lose everything -- power, freedom, assets, life.
The legitimacy of the Communist Party once depended on the continual delivery of prosperity. Now, however, Xi knows his economy, facing a wave of defaulting banks and enterprises, is stumbling. His society is also beset by a host of other problems from disease and environmental degradation, and declining demography. China, at the same time, is losing support around the world.
This is the classic case of an aggressive power facing a closing window of opportunity. China's official Xinhua News Agency in January ran a piece titled "Xi Stresses Racing Against Time to Reach Chinese Dream."
In these perilous circumstances for the Communist Party, its only sure basis of legitimacy is nationalism. Nationalism, as a practical matter, means military misadventure abroad.
China's ruler, therefore, needs something to distract restive Chinese people as well as unhappy senior leaders. We may think that Xi Jinping should be cautious, but from where he stands, he now has incentives to start a crisis, especially if he thinks President Trump, seeking re-election, will not respond.
That crisis, at least at this moment, looks as if it is going to be over Taiwan.
Uncertain Times? - By Hal Lindsey -
The November 2020 issue of The Atlantic features an article titled, "The Election that Could Break America"... The President of the United States, the First Lady, many others in the Administration and on Capitol Hill have been diagnosed with Covid-19... The World Health Organization now estimates that 10% of the world's population has had the virus... A new wave of the disease is hitting New York, Paris, London, Madrid, and elsewhere... An unprecedented fire season continues in the western United States... A shaken Washington establishment is preparing for all-out war over Supreme Court nominee, Amy Coney Barrett... Yet another potential hurricane seems to be taking aim at the Gulf Coast... And on and on.
They call these "uncertain times." But are they really uncertain?
For those who understand Bible prophecy, the times became quite certain with the birth of modern Israel in 1948. These are the days of the budding fig tree, times of the end as a new beginning dawns. Societal upheavals, natural disasters, and the threat of new and more horrible kinds of war create fear and anguish across the world. But the Bible said these things would happen during the days not long before the return of Jesus.
The Bible's accuracy should give us tremendous comfort. Through it, God demonstrates His authority and ultimate control. He did not create us, then leave us to fend for ourselves. He remains active and interested in our lives. He offers to make us a part of His family. And when you're one of His, He has a Bible full of promises to give you comfort and hope in times of trouble.
In Matthew 6:26, Jesus reminded His followers of His Father's care for the "the birds of the air." "They do not sow, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?"
Then, in verse 27, Jesus asked this profound question. "Who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life?"
Agonizing and worry produce more agonizing and worry. How much better to trust the God of your salvation, stand on the solid ground of His word, and allow His all-powerful arms to envelope you? Trust Him, love Him, and receive His love. You don't save yourself by having the right feelings. Only Jesus saves. But you get to choose whether or not you will walk in the peace that Jesus offers.
Will only good things happen in your life? No. The 23rd Psalm describes walking through the "valley of the shadow of death." What an amazing picture! That same verse 4 goes on to say, "I will fear no evil; For You are with me."
That is not naively ignoring the situation. That is acknowledging the true context of every situation. Evil exists. Bad things sometimes happen. But those things happen inside a greater and better framework. The big picture is this. The Almighty God loves you and promises to care for you, even when times seem uncertain.
It's not that you have no enemies, but that even in their presence, He prepares a feast for you. If you are His, then you can say with the Psalmist, "Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the Lord Forever."
What Would You Change? - Nathele Graham - email@example.com
What a mess. I never thought I would see the United States being destroyed and the people of America allowing it to happen. The destruction isn't just in the United States, but the entire world is engulfed in demonic hatred. I shouldn't be surprised. No Christian should be surprised. Prophecy is on fast-forward. Anyone who studies prophecy can easily see what's happening. Unfortunately, too many Christians don't take time to read Scripture, let alone study it. I have actually had Christians tell me that there are parts of Scripture that God doesn't want us to understand. Oh my. Why would God inspire men to write words that aren't to be understood? "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works." 2 Timothy 3:16-17. Those words where inspired by the Holy Spirit and penned by Paul. So, think about it for a minute. That verse says "all" (Greek word "pas" meaning each, every, any, all, the whole, everyone, all things, everything), so shouldn't we study all of Scripture? That's a no-brainer. Yes, we need to study every word of Scripture. That means the easy parts as well as the parts that take a bit of study. In order to grow in our walk with the Lord, we need to change our way of thinking and living to match God's expectations. One of those parts of Scripture that takes a bit of study is prophecy. God put prophecy into Scripture in order to let us know where we are in history. It's up to us to study the signs.
Another statement I've heard from Christians is "Every generation has believed they were the last". That's true. Actually, Paul's writings seem to indicate he felt the Rapture would happen during his lifetime. Since he was inspired by the Holy Spirit in what he wrote, shouldn't the Spirit have told him that the Rapture and the end days would happen many centuries after his lifetime? Ask yourself this question. If you knew the exact day of the Rapture, or even the exact day of your own death, would you live a wild and crazy life right up until the final hour? Then just before the end would you repent and get right with God? We need to repent now and live for Him because at any moment we may find we've run out of time. Although we cannot know the exact day, we can see the signs. That is, we can see the signs if we study all of Scripture, including prophecy. Jesus seems to think it's important to understand the times in which we live. He rebuked the Pharisees for not discerning the times in which they lived. "He answered and said unto them, When it is evening, ye say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red. And in the morning, It will be foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowring. O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times?" Matthew 16:2-3. The Pharisees had just asked Him for a sign that He was the Messiah. Jesus had fulfilled the Old Testament prophecies which gave signs of the Messiah, but the Pharisees chose to continue in their stubborn blindness and ignorance. Christians today also choose blindness and ignorance of the signs of the end times which are happening so quickly.
The Old Testament includes many prophecies concerning the end of days, including ones by Daniel, Ezekiel, Jeremiah, Isaiah, and others. The New Testament also contains end times prophecy, including Jesus' answer to His disciples when asked about the end of the age. He told of false prophets, wars, famine, pestilence, and earthquakes. Have you noticed any of these signs today? Actually, these are reasons why every generation thought theirs was the last. These signs have always happened. Jesus said "All these are the beginning of sorrows." Matthew 24:7. These events would happen throughout time, but grow stronger towards the end...like birth pains. He also talked of love waxing cold. "And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold." Matthew 24:12. The word for "iniquity" is "anomia" and means "a condition without law; contempt and violation of law, iniquity, wickedness". I see a lot of that on the news lately, and it's getting worse. The word for "love" is agape and the word translated "wax cold" is "psycho". When there's contempt for law, and people no longer have a Godly type of love then they will sink to the lowest levels of wickedness. The coldness can be seen in every generation, but the coldness of today is astounding. The Caesars of Rome were cold hearted and immoral, and they had little love for Christians. Hitler was cold hearted and the murders he sanctioned were absolutely evil. Today we see riots in the streets fueled by demonic hatred and the murder of babies is sanctioned by government law. Yes, things are getting worse and iniquity is abounding. Can any good come from such evil? After Hitler's fury, the nation of Israel was re-established, which is an amazing fulfillment of prophecy (Isaiah 11:11 and Amos 9:14-15). If you've studied prophecy you know that God said the nation of Israel will never be uprooted again.
Let's get back to love waxing cold. When I was a teenager growing up in the 1960's I was very afraid. Drug abuse was rampant, riots were violent, and student protests at colleges kept me from going to college because of fear. Those things all seem mild by today's standards. The riots of today are for the sole purpose of destroying America. "And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes in divers places." Matthew 24:6-7. These "wars and rumours of wars" have always happened, but are growing in numbers. Civil strife within a nation and war between nations are happening worldwide. I can tell you that I have very little sympathy and no respect for a high paid movie star or sports figure talking about how unfair their life is because of their skin color. I have no sympathy for hoodlums destroying businesses that hard-working people have built and then crying police brutality when they are treated like the criminals they are. Verily, verily love is waxing cold and satanic forces are driving the unreasonable hatred seen today. This strife is all leading up to world leader who will turn out to be pure evil. That's in prophecy.
Can we talk about pestilence? There's a virus today that has shut down the world. Is it a fake crisis or is it real? No matter what you believe on that point, the stage is being set for complete control of people. It also shows just how cold people are becoming. When this craziness began, a movie star and his wife came down with the virus. Headlines were filled with concern and when they survived, it brought hope that others could survive. Recently, President Trump and his wife have come down with this virus. The same liberal voices who were so concerned about the movie star are spewing hatred and venom towards President and Mrs. Trump. One liberal big mouth said he was praying for the virus and that it kills the President. What's wrong with people? Oh, I remember. Scripture says that love would wax cold as the end of days approaches. Because of this virus, many are forbidden to gather together to worship God, but angry lawless people are allowed to destroy cities and businesses. Schools have been closed, masks are required, and the governments of the world are successfully isolating people from each other. Not to worry. There's a miracle vaccine that's about to make everything OK. Actually, it's about to set the stage for the Anti-Christ to force the mark of the beast upon all people, as prophesied in Revelation. "And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: and that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast or the number of his name." Revelation 13:16-17. Is that shot the actual mark of the beast? No, but it's laying the groundwork for it. If you refuse to be injected with this shot, will you be able to work or go to a grocery store? What will be the proof that you've had the shot? Let's just see what the next few months bring. By the way, the mark described in Revelation 13 comes at least 3 ½ years after the Rapture. Do you think signs of the times show the Rapture will happen soon? I do. Maybe you should think about things you need to change in your life in order to honor God. Tomorrow may be too late.
Many, many prophecies have been fulfilled since Israel has been reestablished as a nation, and many are being fulfilled right now. What does that mean to you? If you knew the Rapture would happen tomorrow, what would you change today? Would you continue to condone sin and embrace it in your own life, or would you repent, ask Jesus to forgive you, and live your final hours sharing the Gospel? The reality is, the Rapture could easily happen tomorrow, or it could even happen before you finish reading this commentary. Yes, my friends, we are that close. When it happens, it will be quick. You won't have time to repent and get right with God. "Behold, I shew you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed." 1 Corinthians 15:51-52. What if you don't live to be taken in the Rapture? What if you die of a heart attack or car accident tomorrow? None of us know when we will find ourselves standing in the presence of Jesus. Now is the time to start living for Him. If you don't think there's sin in your life, then you need to start studying Scripture. Remember, it's God's opinion that matters and He never changes. If you think people have changed and Scripture needs to updated to accommodate the modern ideas of man, then think again. Pride, lust, anger, etc. were sins when Scripture was written and are still sins today. Scripture says that Christians are to be a living sacrifice. "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service." Romans 12:1. That means to put aside our fleshly desires and attitudes in order to serve Jesus. Serve Him on His terms, not human terms.
I will ask again. If you knew that tomorrow would be your last day on earth, what would you change? My heartfelt suggestion is that you would live for Christ and that you make those changes now.
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: Compound Blessing - Bill Wilson - www.dailyjot.com
The way we grow up often impacts what we do in life. I want to share with you a story from my dear friend and ministry partner William Agbeti about his upbringing and how it informs our ministry outreach today. William writes, "When I was growing up, I lived in a compound house. We were ten families, including mine, with a combined population of some 30 people. There were five in my family numbered 5. Mom and Dad and I slept on the same bed. The others slept on a mat on the floor by the bed. The other compound house next to ours had close to 60 persons. It was much bigger and lots noisy. All the families that lived in the compound house slept in what can best be described as pigeon holes.
"We were crammed into small spaces and shared a common bath. Our compound house had no toilet facility. Everyone had to cross a major road to attend to nature's call five minutes away at a public toilet. On many occasions, judging from how people walked on the way to the public toilet, with squeezed bots, one could deduce the level of alert or alarm that the individual was dealing with! We had neither electricity nor running water in the compound house. My parents never used a refrigerator, radio or even a stove. Those were high level, out of reach luxuries. A particular compound friend of mine, let's call him Jay, had it tougher than I did. He could not be fed by the relatives he stayed with - a perpetually drunk uncle and a prostitute auntie. Oftentimes, I had to secretly share my food with him.
"In an attempt to help feed him most times, I introduced him to "crab catching" at the beach. We would go to the beach at dawn, hunt for crabs, cook and enjoy them at home. It was pure heaven, as we ate the crabs and drank the spicy hot soup we made with them. Much later, I extended our little hunting expedition to cover groundhogs hunting. This became so successful, that I started feeding not only one, but several friends with succulent fried, boiled or grilled meat, accompanied by super-taste-bud-crushing, hot red pepper and corn meal. I could easily have become rich in those days, making my own brand of "knockout" peppers! Back then, little did I know God was preparing me to feed hundreds of children today.
"My involvement in our Ministry's feeding program today has its origins and blessings from a compound house. Proverbs 22:6 says, "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old he will not depart from it." There is human training and divine training. Both work for the same good. My childhood "training and experience" was a compound blessing." This story is a "Jungle Chronicle" akin to my Friday feature The Farm Chronicles. I think it is important for you, as a reader of The Daily Jot, to gain an understanding of the "what" behind those of us who are leading this ministry and why we are so passionate about providing news analysis from a prophetic worldview and feeding, clothing, and giving water to those in greatest need.
Daily Devotion: Resurrection Man - by Greg Laurie -
For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. -Matthew 12:40
https://harvest.org/resources/devotion/resurrection-man/ - Listen
Some messages aren't urgent, but other messages are. For instance, if your child is running toward the street when a car is approaching, you will yell, "Stop!" And you'll yell it with urgency because your child's life depends on it.
When Jonah went to the city of Nineveh to preach the message God gave him, the Bible tells us that he cried out, "Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!" (Jonah 3:4 NKJV).
That wasn't the first time Jonah cried out. After three days and three nights in the belly of a fish, Jonah said, "I cried out to the Lord because of my affliction, and He answered me. Out of the belly of Sheol I cried, and You heard my voice" (Jonah 2:2 NKJV). And God gave him a second chance.
In fact, Jesus validated the story of Jonah when He used it to illustrate His own death. He said, "For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth" (Matthew 12:40 NKJV).
Jonah took the same desperation he felt in the belly of that fish and carried it with him as he spoke to the people of Nineveh. This was a man who had been transformed. Jonah was a resurrection man.
If you've encountered Jesus Christ, then you, too, are a resurrection person. Unbelievers are looking for someone who is real. Jonah was an authentic voice, and the people of Nineveh recognized that.
In the same way, if you can be real and authentic, if you can admit it when you make a mistake, and if you simply seek to be the best follower of Jesus that you possibly can be, then you will reach people for Him.
FROM THE HEART
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"Folks, it's all beginning to unravel. America is in more danger of falling than at any time in its history. But I believe Bible prophecy predicts this very decline. From this point on, we believers have to get serious. We are going to face discouragement, disillusionment and, most certainly, persecution in the time between now and the Rapture. But don't be discouraged or disillusioned. The coming turmoil will provide us unrivaled opportunities to share the good news of the Gospel. So be ready to share your faith and your hope with those who need Christ. We still have time to reap a great harvest of souls for God's kingdom!" - Hal Lindsey
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