Prophecy Update Newsletter
October 12, 2016
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
The Seven Seals of Revelation - By Gene Lawley - http://raptureready.com/featured/lawley/lawley127.html
There are three sets of seven judgments in the Book of Revelation-seven seals, seven trumpets, seven bowls. There is, however, a rather strange difference between the seals and the other two sets of judgments. Each of the seals is opened by the Lamb of God, the Lord Jesus Christ. Each of the trumpet and bowl judgments is activated by angels.
The determination of who could open the seals begins in Revelation 5, where the question is asked, "Who is worthy to open the scroll and to loose its seals?" (Revelation 5:2). The answer came quickly: "And no one in heaven or on the earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll, or to look at it" (Revelation 5:3).
John wept with concern that no one was qualified to open the scroll and loose its seals, but then one of the twenty-four elders also looking on told him, "Do not weep. Behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has prevailed to open the scroll and to loose its seven seals." He was naming the Lord Jesus Christ, as the narrative continues to identify Him and His qualifications in that chapter.
In Chapter 6, then, we see that He opens six of the seals in due course, and then, the seventh one at the beginning of chapter 8 to introduce the seven trumpet judgments handed out by angels. Chapter 7, like chapter 12 and others, is a sidebar-like narrative of developments along the chronological pathway of judgments that were to come. The three sets of judgments appear to be the backbone of the seven-year period, and are fleshed out, so to speak, with these sidebar narratives.
However, the seal judgments are different, so highlighted by the fact that the Lamb of God is the one who opens each of the seals. The four horsemen and the subsequent descriptions of the wrath of God appear to be an overview of the remainder of the specific judgments. It is as if the Lord is giving His authority to the angels who hand out the trumpet and bowl judgments, the details of what has been captioned in the six seals with the seventy activating the specific judgments.
Let's look at those seals as they are opened.
The first one's opening is described by John like this:
"Now I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals; and I heard one of the four living creatures saying with a voice like thunder, 'Come and see.' And I looked, and behold, a white horse. He who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer" (Revelation 6:1-2).
This person on the white horse, a symbolic picture, no doubt, is the central character in the unfolding drama of the Book of Revelation. He is identified in Daniel 9:26-27 as the one with heritage links to ancient Rome, and who would "confirm a covenant with many" to begin a seven-year tailspin of events and judgments leading to the physical return of Christ to reign on the earth for a thousand years. Daniel foretold it like this:
"And after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself; and the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end of it shall be with a flood, and till the end of the war desolations are determined.
"Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week; but in the middle of the week he shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall be one who makes desolate, even until the consummation, which is determined, is poured out on the desolate."
This matter of abominations and desolations is wheat Jesus was referring to in Matthew 24:15+16:
"Therefore when you see the 'abomination of desolation,' spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (whoever reads, let him understand), then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains."
There is no indication whatsoever that Titus and his troops were interested in anything but getting at the gold between the stones of the temple, in which case they left not one stone upon another, just as Jesus predict4ed in Matthew 24:1-2. There are those who that Titus fulfilled that prophecy of Daniel and Jesus, but sit will not come about until the Antichrist enters the holy place and declares himself God at the mid-point of the seven years of tribulation.
Earlier Daniel had been told that seventy years of judgment had been allocated for Israel, and this passage tells us that sixty-nine of those years were finished at the time of Christ's crucifixion. (An initial period of seven weeks occurred prior to these sixty-two noted here.)
It was a strange way of counting weeks of years instead of days, but it calculates out that way. One more week of years, or seven years, was uncounted and it appears the seven-year, or one week, for which the covenant covered is this lagging seven years.
It is important to note that this "prince" who has kinship with the Romans who destroyed the city of Jerusalem and its temple in 70 A.D. is the one who will apparently instigate the covenant's confirmation, which is yet future. We will refer to this again.
When the Lord opens that first seal, a white horse is seen, and the person on it has a bow but no arrows. When that person confirms the covenant, essentially a peace agreement with Israel, he heads right out to sell his peace treaty as the champion of peace. The "many" who confirmed the covenant with him were members of the United Nations, no doubt. His goal, however, is to complete the mission of a New World Order that would usher in a one-world government.
It is interesting that the man is "given a crown," not one earned by him. However, when Christ appears on His white horse at the end of the seven years, He has on His head "many crown." (The original King James Version calls them diadems, and that caused me to miss the significance of it for many years) The question is, where did Jesus get all those crowns? Of course, it was when the raptured saints, represented by the twenty-four elders, were given those crowns at the rewards ceremony recorded in Revelation 1, and they laid them at the feet of the Lord Jesus! That is one more piece of evidence in favor of the pre-tribulation rapture position.
When Daniel, looking ahead, foretold of a beast having four heads, he identified those heads as successive reigning kingdoms ruling the world. The beast that John saw, rising up out of the sea, had seven heads, but the seventh was not yet formed. It was for the future. Daniel's fourth head, or kingdom, was the one in which John lived. Two such kingdoms came before Daniel's time, Assyria and Egypt.
Revelation 17:8 further identifies that seventh head of the beast John saw: "The beast that you saw was, and is not, and will ascend out of the bottomless pit and go to perdition." The coming one-world government is the kingdom represented by that seventh head which was not yet formed in John's vision.
The man on the white horse, who links back to the sixth head of the beast, Rome, is going forth "conquering and to conquer" in his goal of establishing that world government. He is identified with the beast, but strictly speaking, he is not the beast, though many say that he is so, even at the first appearance in Revelation 13:1-2.
Because of that "same as" identification, Bible prophecy teachers make a telling mistake, in my opinion. They assume that the person, the Antichrist, suffers a mortal wound, dies, then rises again in three days to emulate Christ and thereby deceive the people. The truth is that those left behind at the Rapture will not have been prepared for such an event, and God says, "And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie..." (2 Thessalonians 2:11).
However, there is no Scripture that supports any part of that scenario. The Scripture says, "And I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded, and his deadly wound was healed. And all the world marveled and followed the beast" (Revelation 13:8). One of his heads is mortally wounded. How many heads does the Antichrist have? No, the only head that could be the one meant is that sixth head, Rome of old, the kingdom that ruled the world when John lived. The first five heads, or kingdoms, had long ago faded into history, and that seventh head was not yet formed. So, the kingdom of Rome died, but out of the shadows of history there comes one who is scripturally and historically linked to that regime and who will be the central figure for its resurrection as the seventh head of the beast.
Note this in Revelation 17:10-11:
"There are also seven kings. Five have fallen, one is, and the other has not yet come. And when he comes, he must continue a short time. The beast that was, and is not, is himself also the eighth, and is of the seven, and is going to perdition."
The Antichrist will work behind the open frontage of government entity, but will soon tire of that and will shut down that New World Order and its one-world government and take over completely-the eighth head of the beast, truly personified.
No doubt but what this is the time, halfway through the seven years of the tribulation period, when "...in the middle of the week he shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering" (Daniel 9:27) "...and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God" (2 Thessalonians 2:3-4).
There we have the continuity of the man on the white horse, "conquering and to conquer" as he completes his role in the end-time scenario. (The "perdition" he is headed for, along with his false prophet, also alluded to in Revelation 17:9, is to burn forever and ever in the lake of fire, according to Revelation 19:20.)
In order to have a one-world government there must not be any nation states having their own sovereignty. The prophetic purpose of God is for that to happen, as Scripture reveals. The Rapture event will effectively end America's sovereignty, if not so already, and in the working of a time-table that only God could accomplish, the Gog-Magog war will eliminate Russia, Iran (Persia) and the other Islamic nations joining with them.
Without much thinking on it over the years, like others, perhaps, I read about the seven seals and assumed each horseman came out, did his thing, then faded back into the shadows in favor of the next one to appear. That actually makes no sense, for once the seven years begins, it opens with the sudden destruction that accompanies the disappearance of millions of believers in the Rapture. Absolute terror will rule the world at that time. The riders on the symbolic red, black and pale horses, representing warfare, starvation and desolation, and death, will continue, wall-to-wall, for the remainder of the tribulation period.
In that first three and one-half years, the Antichrist will be busy eliminating the sovereignty of individual nations and organizing them into ten regions of the world, the ten toes of Daniel's statue in his dream. The Jews will be rebuilding their temple and reinstating its sacrifices. As revealed in Revelation 7, God will ordain 144,000 Jewish missionaries' wo will lead millions to believe in the Messiah, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, as Matthew 24:14 declares: "And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come." This means Israel will have recognized Jesus as their true Messiah, just as Zechariah 12:10 declares:
"And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on Me whom they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn."
The two witnesses, quite possibly Moses and Elijah, will be on hand for that half of the time as vivid reminders in Jerusalem of God's ultimate coming judgment.
When the man of sin enters the temple, cancels the covenant and shuts down the sacrifices and offerings at midpoint of the seven years, death and destruction will reign with fury. The mark of the beast will be fully activated and worship of any other than that man of sin will not be tolerated. In Revelation 12 we are told in a sidebar narrative how Satan is cast out of heaven and is like a raging red dragon. As a spirit, he has no body of his own, so he will indwell the Antichrist, and in that mode he will enter the temple and declare himself God. It is just as he envisioned in Isaiah 14:13-14:
"For you have said in your heart: 'I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation, on the farthest sides of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High.'"
The fifth seal opened to reveal the many martyrs who will be losing their lives over the seven-year period. Notable are those described in Revelation 7:9-17.
The sixth seal, then, summarizes the massive upheavals and destruction in the physical heavens and earth, especially during that last half of the time.
The opening of the seventh seal merely gives authority for the sounding of those trumpet judgments, as recorded in Revelation 8.
As a tag to this analysis of these seals, we should consider what might be the "times and seasons" for the beginning of such things. To the Thessalonians, Paul wrote, "But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. For when they say, "Peace and safety!" then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape. But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief" (1 Thessalonians 5:1-4).
With no need of embellishment, the evidence of major uncertainties and difficult times approaching brings us to a vivid realization that we must make sure our sins are forgiven and our salvation is secure in the Lord.
Contact email: and firstname.lastname@example.org
Jerusalem on high alert for next terror strike - http://www.debka.com/article/25715/Jerusalem-on-high-alert-for-next-terror-strike
Israeli security and police authorities fear that the drive-by shooting attack in Jerusalem Sun. Oct. 9 was planned as the opening shot of a round of major Palestinian terror assaults, most likely in Jerusalem, over the Jewish High Holidays. debkafile's counterterrorism sources report information received of more than one group of terrorists heading for an attack, in the wake of the Silwan gunman, who murdered Yosef Kirma and Levana Malichi Sunday. They are fired up to avenge his death in a shootout with Israeli police, which cut short his shooting spree.
Police, Border Guards and elite police units are fanned out wide to forestall any attacks, over and above the regular reinforcement of manpower, including volunteers, for Yom Kippur, especially at the Western Wall which sees a mass intake of worshippers for the annual Day of Repentance.
Community leaders at the Palestinian Al-Ram village in north Jerusalem were warned to put a stop to the celebrations that hailed the gunman as a hero and martyr or face a curfew. The villagers would then be prevented from going out to their jobs in the city. While the investigation into the shooting is under a gag order, it is already evident that the perpetrator did not act alone. His accomplices are now targeted.
The detention a month ago of a Palestinian terrorist in the Shuafat district of Jerusalem thwarted a row of terror attacks planned by him on behalf of Hamas for the Jewish High Holidays in Jerusalem. He was charged with forming a Hamas cell and plotting attacks, including laying explosive devices in shops, an attack on crowds at the Malcha Mall, and preparing a suicide attack in a Pisgat Zeev bus.
Read earlier DEBKA reports.
Details of the inquiry into the deadly Palestinian shooting spree that claimed two Israeli lives and injured 6 others in Jerusalem Sunday, Oct. 9, are under a court gag order. However, this attack was clearly different from the run-of-the-mill terror plaguing Israel for the last two years, which its security services have usually prevented in good time or cut short before the damage spread.
The two victims were Police Elite Unit (Yasam) officer Yosef Kirma, 29, who was survived by his wife, parents and two brothers, and Levana Malichi, 60, who was mourned by a husband, three daughters and 6 grandchildren.
The gunman was not an anonymous knife-wielding lone youth, but well known to the police and security authorities as Musabah Abu Sabit, 39, from Silwan, who fitted the classical profile of a hardened terrorist.
Abu Sabit had been in and out of Israeli courts and prisons, charged with grievous bodily harm to police officers, taking illegal military training, torching vehicles and other violent acts.
He was due to start serving another four-month jail sentence on the day of his shooting rampage in Jerusalem. This terrorist was also prominent in extremist Palestinian circles as "the Lion of Jerusalem." He was photographed marching with the flag of the Hamas terrorist group and caught as a activist for the outlawed violent anti-Israel Islamist Murabatun movement.
Abu Sabit did not operate underground. His hate-filled inflammatory messages with self-images appeared in Facebook, the latest one two days ago.
Homeland Security Minister Gilead Erdan's stated to the media after the attack that no specific warning had preceded the attack and charged Facebook with responsibility for reopening its pages to Palestinian incitement.
Neither claim accounted for the security authorities having missed the vital clue to the coming attack.
That miscue will not doubt be uncovered by the inquiry. But the questions remain.
Abu Sabit moved between three sites of attack, shooting an MI6-type automatic rifle, a feat demanding the aptitude of a commando or special operations fighter. Where was he trained? Did he pause between attacks, or did he have an accomplice at the wheel? If he did, what happened to him? Is he the object of a manhunt? The weapon was worth roughly $10,000. How did he obtain it and the ammo he used?
A terrorist operation of this kind would be hard to conduct by a lone killer. It would be typically aided and abetted by a group, each member of which would have a special function. So was this the work of a network which the Shin Bet Security Service missed?
After he was banned from Jerusalem, the gunman was able to return. How come? Were there no tabs on his movements?
The bravery, speed and enterprise demonstrated by the special police and border police officers in reaching and tackling the gunman minutes into his attack were exceptional. They offer a classical model for any anti-terror force anywhere. But Yosef Kirma paid the price.
debkafile reported earlier Sunday.
Two of the eight injured victims of a Palestinian gunman's attack Sunday, Oct. 9 in Jerusalem have died of their injuries. He conducted a shooting rampage from a moving car through three sites in northern Jerusalem: the light rail station opposite French Hill, the Shimon Hatzadik Tomb and a main Jerusalem thoroughfare, ending in a shootout at the Arab neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrach. There, he was surrounded by police and an elite counter-terror force. In the ensuing shootout, he was killed, after injuring two police officers, one of whom has since died. The gunman was a 39-year old resident of Silwan, a district opposite the Old City of Jerusalem.
This was the most serious attack in the latest upsurge of Palestinian terror starting ahead of the Jewish High Festivals. He was able to drive between three sites near National Police Headquarters, shooting all the way, without being stopped. In the final shootout, residents at Sheikh Jerrach were heard shouting Allahu Akhbar! from their windows.
Israeli Police Commissioner Ronnie Alsheich described the attack as serious with multiple victims - but not a surprise. Palestinian terrorists are wont to strike when Jewish festivals are at hand. The attack Sunday came three days before Yom Kippur Eve. He called on the public to carry on with their normal lives while remaining vigilant and informing the police of anything out of the way.
Nothing has changed, he said, but security forces operate day and night to prevent the ever-present terror menace. There is no reason to cancel visits to Jerusalem. Commissioner Alsheich praised the way the police handled the terrorist shooting rampage at three sites, noting that from beginning to end, the incident took no longer than 3-4 minutes.
At the same time, debkafile's counterterrorism sources note that two weeks ago, the same gunman, suspected of plotting a terrorist attack, was issued with an order distancing him from Jerusalem.
Although the police commissioner said no advance warning of a terror attack had been received, debkafile's counterterrorism sources report that the same gunman, known to the police as Mussabah Abu Sabit, 39, from Silwan, a Hamas follower and activist in the anti-Israel Muslim Al Aqsa campaign, was given an order two weeks ago banning his presence in Jerusalem.
This raises three questions:
1. How was he able to reach Jerusalem for his murderous shooting spree?
2. Did the police fail to execute the ban?
3. After being expelled from Jerusalem, wouldn't he have presented the same terror threat from his next destination in another part the country?
4. Were any devices employed to keep track of the potential terrorist's whereabouts?
Obama Administration 'Manufacturing Crisis' With Israel - By Barney Breen-Portnoy - http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/article.cfm?recent_news_id=719
With its eyes on the potential launch of an Israeli-Palestinian peace initiative after next month's presidential election, the Obama administration is "manufacturing a crisis" over settlement construction, to exert diplomatic pressure on the Jewish state, The Weekly Standard reported on Sunday, citing sources in Congress and the American Jewish community.
Last week, the administration raised many eyebrows with its unusually strident criticism of Israel's settlement policies following the approval of dozens of new homes in the West Bank.
One congressional source told The Weekly Standard that the administration had been "waiting for an opening" to hit hard against Israel, and an official with an American-Jewish organization was quoted as saying the administration "wants to be able to say the Israelis forced them to act."
The vociferous anti-settlement rhetoric used by White House and State Department spokespersons was shortly followed by the publication of a New York Times editorial board op-ed calling on the administration to back a UN Security Council resolution that would outline the parameters of a two-state solution.
In response to that op-ed, Mark Dubowitz -- executive director of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) think thank -- tweeted on Friday, "Obama is laying the groundwork for UN & EU sanctions on Israel. I've seen this playbook before."
Later the same day, Dubowitz took aim at the administration again, tweeting, "Unlike with Iran, all options are on Obama's table to pound Israel."
As reported by The Algemeiner extensively, many observers are expecting a US-led peace drive during the lame-duck period between the presidential election on Nov. 8 and the inauguration of Obama's successor on Jan. 20.
Last week, Malcolm Hoenlein -- executive vice president of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations -- told The Algemeiner he had "some concerns about what Obama and others may do" regarding the Israeli-Palestinian peace process during the remainder of the president's time in the White House.
"This is based on things I heard from him a year ago about his priorities and the understandable importance of his legacy to him," Hoenlein said. "And I listen to his speeches and I have seen some of the harsh statements that are being issued, even this week, about Israeli settlement policies.
The language being used is much stronger than we've seen in the past and I'm afraid that this could be indicative of what a forthcoming UN Security Council resolution against settlements, or something that goes even further, might look like."
In an interview with The Algemeiner last month, FDD President Clifford D. May said there was significant bipartisan concern in Washington that Obama "won't have Israel's back" at the UN after the November election.
May spoke with The Algemeiner a day after 88 US senators sent a letter to Obama urging him to veto any one-sided UN resolutions regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which, he warned, "would be damaging not just to Israel, but to any possibility of peace in the near future."
Former State Department Middle East negotiator Aaron David Miller predicted for The Algemeiner last month that Obama "will likely do something" in the Israeli-Palestinian realm before his term in office is complete.
"I can't imagine that the president, let alone Secretary of State John Kerry, will be able to leave this one alone," Miller said.
The Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur) - Jack Kelley - https://gracethrufaith.com/topical-studies/holidays-and-holy-days/the-day-of-atonement-yom-kippur/
Then have the trumpet sounded everywhere on the tenth day of the seventh month; on the Day of Atonement sound the trumpet throughout your land.
Last night (9-22-15) at sundown the holiest day of the Jewish year began. Many who do not observe any other Jewish custom will refrain from work, fast, and attend synagogue services last night and today. The name "Yom Kippur" means "Day of Atonement," and that pretty much explains what the holiday is. It is a day set aside to "afflict the soul," to atone for the sins of the past year.
Many religious Jews believe that in Heaven books recording all the deeds of mankind are opened on Rosh Hashanah beginning an annual review of man's behavior. Those whose behavior has been exemplary in every respect are given another year of life, those who have demonstrated no redeeming qualities are scheduled for death, and those who fit neither category are given 10 days until Yom Kippur to right all the wrongs committed during the year just past.
Days Of Awe
These 10 days are called the Days of Awe because each man's destiny hangs in the balance as he goes about asking forgiveness for sins committed against Him (violations of His Law) and from friends and neighbors for wrongs done to them. On Yom Kippur, the judgment entered in these books is sealed and the books are closed for another year. So this day is, essentially, their last appeal, their last chance to change the judgment, to demonstrate their repentance and make amends.
Yom Kippur is a Holy Sabbath; no work can be performed. Jews refrain from eating and drinking even water. It is a complete, 25-hour fast beginning before sunset on the evening before Yom Kippur and ending after nightfall on the day of Yom Kippur.
In ancient times, Yom Kippur was the only day of the year when it was permissible to speak the Name of God. During a great and solemn ceremony at the Temple two goats were brought before the High Priest. One was a goat "for the Lord" to be presented as a sin offering as commanded in Lev. 16:7-10. The other was called "the scapegoat" because all the sins of the nation were symbolically placed upon its head, and it was led outside the city. The goat for the sin offering had done nothing to deserve this, but was killed to remind the people that only the shedding of innocent blood could atone for their sins. The death of the two goats symbolically set aside the sins of the nation, made their offering acceptable and gave them another year of peace with their Creator. Lying prostrate before Him the people spoke the Name of God in heartfelt thanks.
Here are a couple of interesting tidbits from Jewish tradition. When the goats were brought before the High Priest, their respective roles in the ceremony were determined by lot. Two golden lots were placed in a golden bowl and as he placed his hand upon the head of each goat, the High Priest reached into the bowl and pulled out one of the lots. Before the cross the goat that was to be presented to the Lord as a sin offering was always on the right hand of the High Priest. After the cross it never was.
While the scapegoat was symbolically receiving the sins of the people upon its head a scarlet ribbon was tied from one of its horns to the door of the temple. Just before the goat was led from the Temple into the wilderness this ribbon was cut in two, leaving some on the horn and some on the door. According to tradition, at a predetermined location outside the city, the goat was pushed off a cliff and fell to its death. All the years before the cross, at the moment of the scapegoat's death, the piece of ribbon on the temple door turned from red to white recalling the passage from Isaiah 1:18, "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow." After the cross this never happened again.
The Law Is Only A Shadow ...
Some Christians believe that the Lord Jesus began His ministry on Yom Kippur announcing in effect that the judgment that was due mankind would be borne by Him instead (Luke 4:16-21) and that man no longer need live in fear of judgment nor have to endure the 10 Days of Awe every year.
It's easy to see the Lord in the role of our sin offering, whose shed blood purchased our pardon forever (Hebrews 10:1-4). And at His trial before Pontius Pilate, wasn't He chosen to bear our sins while Bar Abbas was released? But He was also our peace offering. For God was pleased to have all His fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to Himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross (Colossians 1:19-20). He is our peace, who has broken down every wall (Ephesians 2:14).
So why was the goat chosen for the Lord never on the right hand again? And why did the ribbon no longer turn white at the death of the scapegoat? The One Who had fulfilled the role that the two goats only symbolized had come. It is He Who sits at the right hand of the Father and it is He Who has forever taken away the sins of all who would accept Him. Where the reality has come the shadow is no longer effective. (Colossians 2:17)
History To Prophecy
The prophetic fulfillment of Yom Kippur will come at the end of the Millennium at the so-called Great White Throne judgment, when all the unsaved dead are brought back to life to be judged according to their works. (Revelation 20:11-15). The books will be opened for the last time and those from all ages who have refused the pardon purchased for them at the cross will bear the full responsibility for their sins against God and man, destined to spend eternity in shame and torment. But those who have accepted the Lord's pardon are at peace with God, and will spend eternity with Him and shine like the brightness of the Sun. Shalom.
Nearing Midnight: When God Promises -Terry James - http://raptureready.com/rap16.html
Every presidential election in recent times has been talked about as one of the most crucial in America's history. This election has added to it, however, anxiety among voters the likes of which I can't recall.
Not everyone is so concerned, of course. Those I'm referring to who are so concerned are those who truly see the nation as on a pathway of rapid decline in most every aspect of society and culture. From the issues of the debauching of morality like instituting same-sex marriage and same-sex public toilet facilities...to a presidential administration that seems to have thrown the U.S. Constitution out the window of common sensibility...to the deliberate creation of an economic morass that has built to the point that the government routinely lies, fabricating statistics to try to convince the American people that they aren't in reality in the portentous economic predicament their circumstances plainly indicates, intensive fear is building.
There is genuine worry within the heartland of America that we have a government that is no longer recognizable as founded. And, the even greater worry is that this condition has been deliberately brought about by elected leaders whose primary concerns is feathering their own personal and political power nests.
Certainly, looking across America's landscape of the present hour, it isn't easy to find a glimmer of hope to offer those with these concerns. The cajoling of voters for their votes by the politicians and their great, swelling promises of the campaign stump suddenly disappear when they win elections. They join in or revert to their old Washington ways once put into or returned to office. It would be foolhardy to expect that this election will see accomplished a different result.
Tremendous pressures exerted upon newly elected members of Congress to join the insider network or else be marginalized and rendered ineffectual has been made blatantly observable over the last number of mid-term elections in particular. Once the candidates have been within the D.C. Beltway for a certain period of time, they melt into the system. They seem to disconnect from their constituency until time to get out and shore up their support at home.
The politicians' promises, almost without exception, fade into the canyons of lost memories, the destination for which they are intended all along by the Washington power brokers. Yet to so many amongst the citizenry, the government has come to demand god-like reverence. The largess that the power brokers provide from cradle to grave has replaced reliance upon provision by the true God of Heaven in the mainstream of life in America--this swiftly taking our nation in the opposite direction intended by the founding fathers.
Each succeeding election proves again and again that the politicians' promises were never intended to be kept. Yet we the people continue to place trust in those who, in many cases, have been in those positions of power for decades. It's a form of insanity, I think--reprobate thinking brought on by our sinful ways and activity. Again, the definition of insanity is trying the same thing time after time to solve problems even though it fails every time.
This brought to mind for this week's commentary the distinctly defined difference--the contrast--between those promises given by the politicians and the promises made by our God in Heaven.
Actually, it was the actions of the current president of the United States in Jerusalem attending the funeral of former Israeli prime minister Shimon Peres that brought this contrast to mind. Mr. Obama's White House publicity writers, while reporting Obama's trip to Jerusalem for Peres' funeral, made a faux pas that had to be quickly corrected.
Obama correctly stated in his prepared remarks while attending the funeral, "I could not be more honored to be in Jerusalem to say farewell to my friend Shimon Peres, who showed us that justice and hope are at the heart of the Zionist idea."
However, the White House initially put in the announcement of the president's going to the funeral that the ceremony would be in "Jerusalem, Israel." The embarrassed White House staff put out within six hours of the faux pas the corrected statement that indicated that in fact Jerusalem is disputed territory.
In other words, Israel, in the eyes of U.S. politicians, has no claim to Israel more valid than do those who claim possession among the Palestinians. The U.S. State Department has, in fact, refused to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, placing the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv.
The same politicians who make us promises election after election and quickly forget them once they've been voted in office tell Israel that, in effect, God's promise to that nation is not valid. Yet while the politicians prove election after election that it is their own promises that are not valid, the God of Heaven, through the very nation of Israel, which is at the heart of so much worldwide anger and controversy, has proven beyond any doubt that He keeps His promises.
He has said that Israel, once established in the land, will never be uprooted again. He said it would be made a nation again in a single day. He said that Israel will never stop being His people. He has kept every promise. We can know therefore, beyond any doubt that while the politicians of this nation and world almost never keep even one promise, the God of the Universe never will break a promise.
That God has said to His people Israel regarding Jerusalem, "For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye." (Zechariah 2:8)
The Lord has also promised that because the politicians of this world will "divide my land," He will bring the whole world into the Valley of Jehoshaphat--to Armageddon (Joel 3:2).
That's why we watch Israel so closely in the observation of the unfolding of history in view of Bible prophecy. Israel is absolute proof of the veracity of God's Word. He keeps His promises--and Israel is the proof! To apply this to the fear and trepidation that so many Christians are expressing today about the upcoming election and what lies beyond November 8, I urge that we consider our Great, Promise-Keeping God.
He has told us that we will be completely kept out of the time of the soon-to-come era of horror termed the Tribulation--out of His Judgment and Wrath (Revelation 3: 10). He will take the Bride of Christ --the Church-- off this condemned planet when all of the troubling signals begin to come to pass (Luke 21: 28).
When God promises, it is as good as accomplished. This promise, I hope you will sense in your spirit as do I, is about to be kept.
My Review of "Rapture Ready...Or Not?"
Over the last 35 years, I have literally read hundreds of books on Bible Prophecy and End Time signs. I especially enjoy books on the Rapture, and I have read almost every Rapture-related book published. In all those years, devouring thousands of pages, and millions of words, I have not read a better book on the Rapture than, Rapture Ready...Or Not?
Terry James might be physically blind, but he is spiritually sharp and well discerning beyond most authors. In "Rapture Ready...Or Not?" Terry has nailed the pre-trib Rapture, and removed any doubt what so ever about the Church going through the Tribulation. With great insight and Godly discernment, Terry explains with simple, yet profound words, why and how that he has come to believe the ways he does about the Rapture, the Tribulation, and the End Times scenario. I think after reading "Rapture Ready...Or Not?" you too will believe as Terry does, and be Ready for the Rapture like never before! - Randy Thomas - Publisher / Editor - Prophecy Update
For more information and or to get your copy of "Rapture Ready...Or Not?" use this link: http://www.raptureready.com/terry/book35.html
A walk in the dark - Greg Laurie - http://www.wnd.com/2016/10/a-walk-in-the-dark/
Pastor Greg Laurie reveals 'secret of a successful Christian life' in the 'last days'
When my wife, Cathe, tells me she's going for a walk with some of her friends, I'll say, "Why don't you just call it what it is? It isn't a walk; it's a talk."
I think Cathe and her friends have it right in many ways. The Bible speaks of walking with God, and a "talk" is exactly what it should be. It is all about communication.
When you say you're walking with someone through life, you are basically saying you are there with them through both the rough patches and the great times, the highs and the lows, the ups and the downs. You are there to love them, to understand them.
When we say we are walking with God, it is essentially the same, but even more. The Bible talks about a man named Enoch who walked with God all the way to heaven. They would take walks every day, and one day the Lord said, in effect, "We're closer to my house today than we are to yours. Why don't you just come home with me?"
Interestingly, there is not a lot in the Bible about Enoch. But in Hebrews 11 we read that "by faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death: 'He could not be found, because God had taken him away.' For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God" (verse 5, NIV).
Another definitive series of verses about Enoch is found in Genesis 5: "When Enoch had lived 65 years, he became the father of Methuselah. After he became the father of Methuselah, Enoch walked faithfully with God 300 years and had other sons and daughters. Altogether, Enoch lived a total of 365 years. Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God took him away" (verses 21-24, NIV).
Talk about, as Nietzsche put it, a "long obedience in the same direction." Enoch had the longest walk possible. He walked with God for 300 years.
Enoch made it into what we call the Bible's Hall of Faith, Hebrews 11. We want to pay careful attention to those mentioned in the Hall of Faith, because they were world changers. They were very ordinary people, but they served a great God. They changed their world with faith - with great faith in a great God.
What is faith? The Bible defines it as "the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" (Hebrews 11:1, NKJV). Or, as another translation puts it, "Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see" (NLT).
J. Oswald Sanders wrote, "Faith enables the believing soul to treat the future as present and the invisible as seen." Faith sees invisible things. Faith sees what could be.
Faith is not just running a race; faith is also walking the walk. Hebrews 10:38 says, "The just shall live by faith" (NKJV, emphasis added). Feelings come and go. We cannot attach our Christian experience to how we are feeling emotionally in the moment. We must learn how to walk by faith.
I have discovered one of the secrets of a successful Christian life: living and walking by faith each and every day. It is consistency. It is staying with it. That is the kind of person who will change the world.
Enoch walked with God at one of the darkest times in human history. In fact, it was so dark, evil, and wicked that God actually said he was sorry he had created man in the first place. God was about to bring judgment on planet Earth through the great flood. In a way, Enoch was a last days believer, as his last days were before the flood.
Jesus said, "As the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be" (Matthew 24:37, NKJV). Jesus was saying these two periods of time would be similar. And if Enoch was able to live a godly life at a time like that, then we can live godly lives wherever we are right now.
Enoch had the same spiritual resources that are here for us today. We can live godly lives in an ungodly world.
Someone might say, "Greg, you don't know my world. You don't know my family. You don't know what it's like to live in my neighborhood. You don't know what my workplace is like. You don't know what my campus is like." Maybe I don't. But no matter how messed up or how evil your world is, you can live a godly life in an ungodly world. Enoch proved that.
I believe we're living in the last days. I believe Jesus Christ could come back at any time. As far as I can see in my study of Bible prophecy, I believe the next event on the prophetic calendar is what we call the rapture of the church when all true followers of Jesus are caught up to meet him in the air, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye (see 1 Corinthians 15:52).
Just like it happened to Enoch, it could happen to us.
Or, if the Lord doesn't return in our lifetime, we will die. As I have said before, the statistics on death are quite impressive: one out of every one person will die. The Bible says, "It is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment" (Hebrews 9:27, NKJV). There is no escaping it.
The good news is that Enoch walked with God on earth and, therefore, he was received by God in heaven. When you walk with God and death comes, you don't look forward to it necessarily, but you don't fear it, either. You know that when you die, you will go to heaven. The Bible says that to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord (see 2 Corinthians 5:8).
The moment you take your last breath on earth, you'll take your first breath in heaven. That is the hope of the Christian. Do you have that hope?
Daily Jot: The more Clinton emails, the more abominations - Bill Wilson - www.dailyjot.com
The more Hillary Clinton emails are released, the more Americans can see the web of deceit, dishonesty, and self-enrichment as a way of life for the Democratic presidential candidate. This time, Wikileaks has released emails obtained from the account of Clinton's campaign chairman, John Podesta. Podesta's company, The Podesta Group, receives over $200,000 a month from Saudi Arabia for "public relations services." On August 17, 2014, Clinton sent an email to Podesta, who was also advising the current "president," saying that Saudi Arabia and Qatar were giving funding and logistical support to the Islamic State and other extremist Sunni groups-both governments have paid Clinton millions.
In September, Breitbart reported that records verify Hillary Clinton's foundation has taken between $74.5-87.8 million from Algeria, Brunei, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and United Arab Emirates. The UK Daily Caller reports that "Qatar has given between $1 million and $5 million to the Clinton Foundation and Saudi Arabia has donated upwards of $25 million dollars to the Foundation." Clinton's previous emails indicated that money given to the Clinton Foundation was often paid in relationship to Clinton setting up meetings with high-ranking government officials, including herself. Here Clinton is taking money to enrich herself from financiers of some of the world's worst violators of human rights.
In June, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump ridiculed Clinton for not mentioning the words radical Islam when describing terrorists such as the Islamic State. Clinton responded, "It is long past time for the Saudis, the Qataris and the Kuwaitis and others to stop their citizens from funding extremist organizations. And they should stop supporting radical schools and mosques around the world that have set too many young people on a path towards extremism." The released emails from Clinton's campaign chairman indicate that it's not Saudi citizens that are funding the Islamic State terrorists, it's the Saudi government who also funds the Clinton Foundation and pays her for her influence. The Daily Caller reports that in return, Clinton lobbied for Saudi Arabia, for example, to receive $60 billion in weapons transfers from the US.
These are not made up stories of international intrigue. Hillary Clinton is taking money from sponsors of the most brutal torturers, rapists, and killers of men, women and children in the world. How can she point the finger at Trump for coarse talk about women when she and her campaign chairman are enriching themselves and working on behalf of those who are funding rapists and slave masters of women and children? How? This is outrageous! This is similar to the Lord leading Ezekiel to his sanctuary in Ezekiel 8:8-9, "Then said he unto me, Son of man, dig now in the wall: and when I had dug into the wall, behold a door. And he said unto me, Go in, and behold the wicked abominations that they do here." The more that is revealed about Clinton and her minions, the more we behold unspeakable abominations against us and our nation.
Daily Devotion: Irreconcilable Differences - Greg Laurie - http://www.wnd.com/2016/10/a-walk-in-the-dark/
Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. -2 Corinthians 5:18-19
I have been a pastor for more than 40 years and I have counseled a lot of couples. Let me say this: most marriages that I have seen dissolve did not have to. The couples were simply unwilling to do what the Bible says.
When asked about why they think their marriage is failing, they cite "irreconcilable differences." If I hear that one more time, I am going to pull what little hair I have left out of my head!
Irreconcilable differences? My wife and I have had irreconcilable differences for over four decades. For example, she is neat and I am messy. She is sometimes late; I am often early. She likes to watch anything on television as long as the people have a British accent. I like shoot 'em ups and mysteries and action. She is cute and I am fat. Our differences are irreconcilable, and always will be.
How is it that the very thing that drew people together is now supposedly what's driving them apart? The thing that probably attracted you to your husband or wife was that they are different from you. Maybe you saw something in them that you did not have in your life and you liked that. Now that very thing has turned into a wide chasm-a problem that you say cannot be resolved.
I disagree. I say you recognize there are always going to be irreconcilable differences in your marriage. Embrace it. Realize that coping with differences is part of the relationship. And then get to work improving your marriage. The best husbands will always be aware of the fact that they can do a much better job. And the same goes for wives.
Just because your differences can't be reconciled, it doesn't mean that you and your spouse can't be. According to 2 Corinthians, God has given us the "ministry of reconciliation." Let's put it into practice, not only in our interactions with the world, but in our marriages as well.
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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