Prophecy Update Newsletter
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
The World is Coming Apart - Joseph Chambers -
2 Peter 2
1 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
2 And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.
3 And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.
There is no doubt but the world is moving to crisis after crisis. It is amazing and scary to watch and listen to the wicked people. The worst of the wicked will call anyone who opposes their wickedness dark names. If you stand for righteousness, do not respond to the wicked in kind. Our duty is to conduct ourselves in the spirit of gentleness and with soft words. Don't be a wimp, but be strong with the truth of Holy Scripture.
The End Of The World was not a strange term to Jesus Christ and the early church. Secularists of our generation have created a mindset that immediately labels anyone using such terminology as a religious nut. The truth is that there cannot be a Biblical New World Order and the glorious kingdom of Jesus Christ until the present order comes to an end. Therefore, the present world as we know it is going to end and a new world begin. Nothing in Scripture is prophesied more clearly. We must rescue this truth and begin again to preach "The End Of The World". Satan is afraid of such truth and, especially, truth that convicts the unsaved. Without question he is the mastermind behind the silence in the church about impending judgment and the "End Of This World."
Early church preaching rings with the shattering message of judgment and the coming darkness. Peter wrote to the believers among the many churches, "But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer." (1 Peter 4:7).
They lived in constant readiness for the kingdom of God to be established and warned that the present world order as they knew it had to end first. Nobody cared too much about worldly goods and building personal empires for they all knew it could be gone in a moment. Some of them sold everything they had and gave to the kingdom for the good of everyone. "And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all. Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold, And laid them down at the apostles' feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need. And Joses, who by the apostles was surnamed Barnabas, (which is, being interpreted, The son of consolation,) a Levite, and of the country of Cyprus, Having land, sold it, and brought the money, and laid it at the apostles' feet." (Acts 4:33-37).
It was a mindset unknown to today's church because they knew this world was going to end. They actually expected it in their lifetime and wanted their riches to be invested in the eternal kingdom. This was the Lord's intention for His church.
Biblical discipleship will not return to the church until we re-establish the kingdom message. Jesus said, "My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence." (John 18:36). This world order has to end for the visible appearance of His kingdom to appear. You cannot mix the old with the new unless the new is spoiled and becomes like the old. Jesus' kingdom is presently invisible, a spiritual kingdom in our hearts as we live only for Him, but soon the old will end and His kingdom will begin right here on this earth. He said, "Blessed [are] the meek: for they shall inherit the earth." (Matthew 5:5). That was not some figurative statement, but a clear promise to His own. We will spend at least seven years in Heaven after the Rapture before we share in Christ's establishment of His earthly kingdom.
The Signs Are Everywhere: It's Almost Over
Jesus Christ's disciples asked Him a three-part question that promoted some of His most incredible teachings on this subject. Let's look at these three questions. "Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?" (Matthew 24:3). Jesus had warned them of the destruction of the temple and the coming judgment upon Jerusalem. They asked Him about the time of that judgment, but also about His coming again and what they called the end of the world. The first part was fulfilled in AD 70 when the Romans smashed Jerusalem and ended that great city as a Jewish city for nearly 1900 years. The Jewish people reclaimed the city in 1967 after 1,897 years.
They were very specific in their question about the end of the world and Jesus gave them a specific answer. Notice that He mentioned the end of the world three times in the next eleven verses or the first part of His answer. After speaking of "wars and rumors of wars", he said, "but the end is not yet." Later, He stated, "But he that shall endure to the end, the same shall be saved." He then gave the last of the signs that must occur and stated, "And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come." (Matthew 24:14).
1 John 4
1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.
2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God:
Let me give you the total context of this great reference to the end of the world. Please read it carefully. "And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world? And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. 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. All these are the beginning of sorrows. Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake. And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come." (Matthew 24:3-14).
Jesus Taught Powerful Truths About The End
The Rapture of the Bride of Jesus Christ needs no sign for us to expect Him at any moment, but there is a multitude of signs that relate to the end of this wicked world order ruled over by the devil. Satan has never been very smart and a Bible student can easily detect His masteries of lies. The environmental movement of the world has affected a large portion of churches and many professing Christians have become wild-eyed environmentalists. Many Pentecostal/Charismatic churches are now full-blown "dominion theology" believers working to establish what they believe is the kingdom of God on the earth. The Book of Revelation is rejected by this crowd as a literal book of the prophetic future because they see it as "doom and gloom." Terrible disappointment is just ahead for anyone who has rejected the "end of the world" truths that represent such a clear message in the Holy Bible. This world order is going to crash and the sounds of that crash will echo to the Heavens.
Look at some of the signs Jesus gave in the Matthew 24 teachings we just shared in this article:
"Take heed that no man deceive you." Never has there been more false teachings and doctrines flooding the religious world. Many believers have rejected the Bible as the final word on all truth and now they are extremely vulnerable.
"For many shall come in My name, saying, 'I am Christ'; and shall deceive many." The new generation of deceivers are quick to fill their dark teaching with a sprinkling of Jesus' name and some of His wonderful truths. Then they mix in their false ideas that destroy and deceive. Nothing is more dangerous than a mixture. It is even worse than total error.
"And ye shall hear of wars and rumors of wars." Our globe is a powderkeg of fighting, massacre, and civil wars. We have seen so much carnage on the news that it barely gets our attention. India's recent explosion of five different nuclear devices is an excellent measure of the state of world tension. Many noted world analysts are predicting a nuclear war in the Middle East at any moment.
"Famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in divers places." The record number of these kind of death-dealing events is no longer a question. Tens of thousands are dying from famine and pestilence. Africa is facing a plaque of the AIDS virus that will certainly continue to spread on a worldwide scale. AIDS, along with many other fatal diseases, fits perfectly the Biblical warning of pestilences.
Jesus paused at the end of verse six to warn that the end is not yet. After verse seven, He stated, "All these are the beginnings of sorrow." Everything Jesus stated in verses four through seven has been evidenced to some degree from the time of the early church. Then He describes additional signs that are more pronounced today than ever in church history.
"Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted and shall kill you." Our congress has been debating a "Christian Persecution" measure for months because of worldwide persecution of Christians. Right here in America there is a dedicated effort to stop every public reflection of the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Hornets basketball team in our city of Charlotte has prayer before each game, but refuses to allow anyone to participate unless they agree not to use the name of Jesus in the prayer. Our city council and county commissioners have faced a constant barrage of evil persons determined to stop prayer in Jesus' name. There is a worldwide spirit of evil hatred against the power and person of Jesus Christ unknown in world history.
2 Thessalonians 2
7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.
8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:
9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
"And ye shall be hated of all nations for My name's sake." This verse of Scripture must be seen in a double sense. It relates to the Christians because Jesus was talking about believers and to the believers, but He was also talking to Jewish believers. The hatred of Bible-believing Christians is no less pronounced than the hatred of Jewish people. The anti-Semitism that is reflected in the Arab world is more understandable than the anti-Semitism in religious people. There are whole ministries that operate on their hatred of Jewish people. There is not a more diabolical expression than that which motivates "hatred of Israel." Sure, the Jews as a nation are still in unbelief and are indeed enemies for the gospel's sake. Their unbelief has blinded their eyes to the gospel, but the Scripture clearly warns us to be free of pride and to expect "all Israel to be saved." I believe we are seeing the final expression of hatred for the Jews that will usher in the Antichrist reign. The same Hornets basketball team here in Charlotte that forbids prayer in Jesus' name also forbids anyone praying in Hebrew. Those were the only two restrictions. That would be odd indeed if you did not understand this great teaching of Jesus Christ in Matthew twenty-four. Notice those words again, "Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake." (Matthew 24:9). Of all the religions in the world the only two to be forbidden in the prayer were the two ideas of fundamental Christianity and fundamental Judaism. The only friend Israel has at the United Nations is the United States of America, and Bill Clinton could be the man to change that. At that moment, this Scripture would be perfectly fulfilled, if we could not already count it fulfilled.
"And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many." This verse speaks specifically of men and women who call themselves apostles, prophets, etc. Our world is suddenly, in the last 10 years mainly, being inundated with so-called prophets and apostles. From what was called the "Kansas City Prophets", we now have thousands spreading religious viruses throughout the church. Any man or woman that calls themselves or allows others to introduce them as a prophet or a prophetess is dangerous. The Lord has always had prophets, apostles, pastors, teachers, and miracle workers in His church, but they were men who rejected such titles lest they gather to themselves honor that belongs only to the Lord. We are all servants and whatever our calling may be we have no right to exalt ourselves so that we can then demand an audience of the people. The Lord Himself exalts and debases and we give Him alone the glory. Flee for your life when someone calls themselves a prophet or an apostle. They certainly fit this Scripture perfectly.
"And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold." This speaks specifically of the great apostasy that we are experiencing at this very moment. "Iniquity" or a better word is "lawlessness" perfectly describes the present church world. The church is full of men and women who believe they are a law unto themselves and will not listen to the "unaltering truth of Holy Scripture." You can quote the words of God that demand separation and holiness and the people will simply say, "I'm not convicted of that" and they believe that settles it. This very term, "iniquity/lawlessness", is a profound image of today's church world and because of this lawlessness "the love of many shall wax cold". You cannot be ready for His return and the end until your will is totally surrendered to His perfect will as revealed in the Bible. If there is an ounce of "lawlessness" in you, then you must find the mourners' bench of repentance and confess it to the King.
"But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved." It is very evident that the Lord Jesus knew the struggle of the righteous in the times right before the end. Seven times the same idea was recounted to the church in Revelation two and three. "To him that overcometh", etc. was the closing promise to all seven churches representing the church period or dispensation. The apostasy of this hour has convinced a multitude of church members to ignore the Scriptures that teach total discipleship and complete separation from the world. There is going to be some angry church members and children of compromising churches and families when they suddenly realize they have missed the Rapture and are being thrust into the Tribulation.
"And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come." It is a testimony to the mercy of God that the last sign and action that He has determined before the end is the preaching of His kingdom. If you are a faithful servant of Jesus Christ, then do not fear that the devil can stop you from proclaiming the truth of the gospel. It is thrilling to me to know that our God will protect the true messengers right down to the moment of the Rapture and the beginning of the end. The last sign before the end is a man of God in the pulpit telling the lost how to be saved.
33 Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.
34 And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.
35 For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth.
Jesus Was Not Embarrassed To Talk About The End Of The World
If Jesus was willing to freely speak of the end of this age and the final judgment of a wicked world, why should we not speak freely about the same? It is unbelievable how utterly lost is this incredible message to our sinsick world. Hope is quickly vanishing from the political world. Military experts speak of inevitable conflicts and impending dangers. The secular media is more willing to talk about the hopeless future than the church.
We must show the world that the end of this age is at hand. No, we should not set dates or try to scare people for the sake of its effect on their spiritual commitment. But, we must preach the whole Word of God including eternal damnation and the coming judgment of God. God can no more ignore the plaque of sin that grips this world than He ignored it in Biblical history. Sin always has consequences and to preach otherwise is to be a false prophet. This is not a message of doom, it is a message of hope.
The End Is Just The Beginning
The "New World Order" that the devil's crowd has fostered is a masquerade and imitation of the real. The real "New World Order" is the Biblical kingdom of Jesus Christ. That kingdom cannot mix with a world ruled by greed, love of money, and love of pleasure. Every principle of this present world order must be judged and eliminated. Then He will establish His kingdom to last forever.
Daniel saw this heavenly kingdom established without human hands. Listen to his description from the vision of Nebuchadnezzar which was from the Lord. "And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever. Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold; the great God hath made known to the king what shall come to pass hereafter: and the dream is certain, and the interpretation thereof sure." (Daniel 2:44-45).
No human hands, no "Kingdom Dominion" preachers, no post millennialist will help establish this kingdom. It will be the supernatural hand of the great God and His Son, Jesus Christ. The most mindless idea I have ever heard from a religious source is the new doctrine of a man-made kingdom. The new kingdom must be established and ruled by the King of kings.
The end of the present world order is the beginning of the glory of this kingdom. After one thousand years of His physical reign in Jerusalem the new Heaven and the new earth will be manifest to the world. John clearly shows that the old must end for the new to begin. He stated, "And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God." (Revelation 21:1-3). The truth about the end of the world is one of the most glorious messages in Holy Scripture. Let's tell the world about it!
Will Radical Democrat Freshmen Turn The House Against Israel - By Jonathan Tobin -
Have radicals taken over the Democratic Party? The victories of some self-described "socialists" and other left-wing individual candidates in some highly publicized races this year might lead you to think the answer is "yes."
The growing number of critics and outright opponents of Israel among party activists has been a concern for several years. Their increasing prominence has added to the worries of those who worry the Democrats could be going the way of Britain's Labor Party, which has fallen under the control of radical anti-Zionists, as well as an open anti-Semite like their leader Jeremy Corbyn.
While the next two years promises to be one of escalating conflict between the Democrats and U.S. President Donald Trump, Israel won't be part of the argument. Just as important, the election results gave far more comfort to those who wish to keep the Democrats as part of a bipartisan pro-Israel coalition than those who want to break it up.
Opponents of Israel will have something to celebrate in January.
Rashida Tlaib will become the first Palestinian-American to serve in Congress. Tlaib, who will represent a suburban district outside of Detroit with a large Arab-American population, is an avowed opponent of Israel's existence and a supporter of the BDS movement.
She will find a kindred spirit in fellow freshman Democrat Ilhan Omar, who will be first Somali-American in Congress when she takes the oath to represent Minneapolis. Omar is a fierce critic of Israel, who has called it an "evil" country that has "hypnotized the world"--a standard anti-Semitic meme--and an "apartheid regime."
Both are allied with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a socialist who will represent Queens, N.Y. Ocasio-Cortez said she wanted to end the "occupation of Palestine," though she didn't seem able to say whether that meant the West Bank or, as Palestinians define the term, all of Israel.
This trio of congressional newcomers is also allied with the Women's March, whose leaders combine anti-Zionism with a soft spot for anti-Semitic hate-monger Louis Farrakhan, head of the Nation of Islam.
We can expect them to unite with other Democrats to undermine the U.S.-Israel alliance, such as the dozens who signed letters last year championed by figures such as Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) calling for the lifting of the blockade of the terrorist Hamas regime that rules Gaza.
Intersectional ideology, which falsely analogizes the Palestinian war on Israel's existence with the struggle for civil rights in the United States, has become fashionable in progressive circles. But those running the Democratic caucus are still firmly in the pro-Israel camp.
House Democratic leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.)--and the presumptive Speaker of the House next year--has been a fairly reliable friend of Israel, though not necessarily a fan of the Netanyahu government. The No. 2 Democrat in the House, current Minority Whip Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) is an even more ardent supporter of Israel who has done his best over the years to keep left-wing members of his caucus in line with respect to the Middle East.
Some of the Democrats who will run powerful House committees, such as Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), are not friendly to Israel. But her leadership of the Financial Services Committee probably won't cause any trouble for it.
On the other hand, other veteran Democrats are in a position to bolster the alliance.
The current ranking minority member and presumptive chair next year of the House Foreign Affairs Committee is Rep. Eliot Engel, who represents the Bronx, N.Y. Engel's views about the Middle East could be fairly described as aligning perfectly with the Likud Party in Israel. He is the last person who would champion an attempt to reverse Trump's policies, such as cutting back U.S. aid to the Palestinian Authority to force them to cease subsidizing terrorists.
The new chair of the powerful House Appropriations committee is likely to be Rep. Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.), another reliable pro-Israel legislator.
Just as important is the fact that left-wing foes of Israel received some sharp setbacks in the midterms.
Despite the general swing towards the Democrats in Virginia, anti-Israel propagandist Leslie Cockburn failed to win a vulnerable Republican-held seat for the Democrats. Scott Wallace, a left-wing philanthropist who had funded BDS causes, also failed to capitalize on anti-Trump sentiment in his effort to flip a Republican seat to the Democrats in the Philadelphia suburbs.
Democrats expanded their numbers throughout the country, but those who ran as unabashed progressives, rather than as moderates in districts and states that were not deep blue, generally failed. Indeed, while the gubernatorial contest in Florida was more of a test of the lingering appeal of the Trump brand, it was also one that pitted a fervent ally of Israel in Rep. Ron DeSantis (who eked out a win) against Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, who had ties to groups that are critical of Israel.
It remains to be seen whether Democrats will conclude that the mistake in Florida and other races was nominating left-wingers, and now look for a presidential nominee in 2020 who is more of a moderate, rather than one who can appeal to the anti-Israel intersectional crowd on the left.
But as much as people like Ocasio-Cortez, Tlaib and Omar will get publicity for their cause, the fact remains that most congressional Democrats will be counted among Israel's friends. Alongside a Republican caucus that is nearly unanimous in its support for the Jewish state, it creates a political atmosphere that is still very friendly to Israel.
The future of the Democratic Party with respect to Israel is by no means assured as the party shifts to the left. But for the present, the radical anti-Israel faction remains in the minority, at least as far as Congress is concerned. It will be up to pro-Israel liberals to make sure it stays that way.
Sanhedrin Urges Candidates for Jerusalem Mayor to Prepare for Third Temple - By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz -
Yerushalayim built up, a city knit together. Psalms 122:3 (The Israel Bible™)
Jerusalem will have a new mayor next week and more than any other election this year will decide the religious nature of Israel's capital. The nascent Sanhedrin has addressed a letter to the two candidates emphasizing the role of the Third Temple in municipal current policy.
The Jerusalem mayoral election held last week ran five candidates, but the results were so close that an additional runoff vote next week is needed to choose between the top two. Moshe Lion with 33 percent of the vote and Ofer Berkovitch with 29 percent will run off against each other - with neither achieving the 40 percent of the electorate required to win office.
Lion has previously been closely allied with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. In 1996, Lion was appointed managing director of the Prime Minister's Office, serving simultaneously as his economic adviser. He continued in both those roles until 1999. Netanyahu, however, has not officially endorsed either candidate.
Berkovich is the founder and chairman of Jerusalem's "Hitorerut (awakening) in Jerusalem", a non-aligned Zionist political movement. Appointed as one of the city's eight deputy mayors in 2013, he has been instrumental in passing laws to increase affordable housing in the city, such as double-taxing owners of vacant properties and allowing local authorities to utilize public lands for the purpose of building apartments which would be rented out at low prices. He wants to make Jerusalem cleaner and even more high-tech friendly. He has sponsored joint Arab-Israeli cultural and sports projects.
"When Arabs see that Jews are fighting with them, shoulder to shoulder, for a clean city and that the eastern part of the city remain clean, it will change their thinking," Berkovich told Times of Israel in an interview..
As for terrorism, he believes that if they are provided better municipal services, they will have less reason to turn to Hamas.
But the politics of the eternal Jewish capital are most fiercely fought on the battlefield of religion. In addition to his political connections, Lion, religiously observant, was endorsed by leading ultra-Orthodox rabbis, an important asset in a city in which the Haredi represent approximately 35% of the overall Jewish vote.
Berkovich, on the other hand, was the only one of the candidates that led a secular lifestyle. He has campaigned for businesses to open on the Sabbath. Not only is that policy distasteful to the city's religious residents, but Berkovich perceives Haredi politicians as having a negative impact.
"The other candidates are liable to capitulate to the Haredi extortion, and may not understand the strategic steps the city needs to take in order to flourish and get on the right track," Berkovich told Times of Israel. "They weren't partners in the successes of recent years: the vibrant cultural [scene], economic development, the urban revolution... I don't think they know what is needed, I don't think they know the city well enough, I don't think they understand what to do here."
The religious Jewish aspect of being the mayor Jerusalem was amplified to an even greater degree in an open letter that the Sanhedrin sent to the two candidates.
"With God's merciful approval, one of you will be chosen as head of the city, may it be built and made ready for its ultimate purpose," the Sanhedrin wrote. "We call on the candidates as well as the voters to make choices based on truth and on the main aspect of Jerusalem, which is the building of the Temple."
The Sanhedrin wrote a similar letter to U.S. President Donald Trump after he won the election, calling on him to take a role in building the Third Temple just as Persian King Cyrus helped the Jews build the Second Temple after the Babylonian exile in the sixth century BCE.
"Avoiding this essential issue endangers the existence of the city and its identity as the capital of Israel, thereby endangering Israel itself," the Sanhedrin wrote to the mayoral candidates. "Every Jew and all of humanity are commanded to ascend to the Temple Mount."
"We expect you, as candidates, to relate to this role the city has as home of the Temple. This subject is not simply a matter of religious belief but must also be expressed in political, fiscal, and educational terms."
The Sanhedrin emphasized the importance of Jerusalem in the world. In the letter, they noted that the capital of Israel is frequently the focus of domestic politics and, in the case of Trump, has become an essential part of his platform. In the letter, the Sanhedrin praised Trump for moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem.
"Jerusalem in its entirety is sanctified as Holy and is the spiritual center of the world, the throne of God. We urge you to make public your plans relating to this aspect of the city. There are several ways this can be accomplished, such as festivals of holiness to replace those of impurity."
The Sanhedrin has already begun working toward this end, holding full-dress reenactments of the Temple service before the Biblical feasts. Another glorious example of this was the World Creation Concert held the week before Rosh Hashana, which several representatives from South American countries attended.
The Sanhedrin emphasized that the city will change when the Temple is built, requiring massive improvements to its infrastructure.
"Jerusalem must prepared to host the millions of pilgrims who will attend the feasts when the Third Temple is built," the letter said. "We also call on the government to prepare a center for an international body to replace the United Nations and the Hague, one that will be rooted in the Bible."
Don't Forget God - Nathele Graham - firstname.lastname@example.org
"The words of the wise are as goads, and as nails fastened by the masters of assemblies, which are given from on shepherd." Ecclesiastes 12:11.
We hear about the wisdom of Solomon and most of us know about his riches. It would be easy to envy this man, but we also need to look at his life. Solomon had lived in a way that didn't honor God. His younger years were spent amassing a fortune and collecting wives and concubines. His wisdom was widely known, but the adage "Penny wise, pound foolish" applies to him. In his later years he looked back and saw that there was no real pleasure in his life because of his worldly pursuits. His advice to the younger generation is clear: Don't forget God. "Rejoice, O young man, in thy youth, and let thy heart cheer you in the days of thy youth, and walk in the ways of thine heart, and in the sight of thine eyes: but know thou that for all these things God will bring thee into judgment. Therefore remove sorrow from thy heart, and put away evil from thy flesh: for childhood and youth are vanity." Ecclesiastes 11:9-10. Whether young or old, sin is never to be taken lightly. God doesn't take it lightly. Sin will be judged whether you're 20 years old or 80. Jesus paid the price for our salvation, but that doesn't give anyone a free license to live a lifestyle which is opposed to God. If you've accepted Him for salvation then you need to strive to live according to His ways. When you repented and accepted His sacrifice for your salvation it meant that you changed your mind about sin. If you continue to take pleasure in things that are opposed to God then you haven't repented. God will judge. God has never been silent about what He says is sin, and only His opinion matters. If you reject Him and embrace sin you'll have eternity to regret your choice.
Solomon understood what it was like to be young, and wanted other young people to be wise in their choices. God had granted him wisdom, but he wasted it. Like every gift we receive from God we have the choice as to how we use it. Solomon was wise but made some very foolish mistakes. In looking back over his life he was able to clearly see where he went wrong. He forgot God. "Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them" Ecclesiastes 12:1. Life experience can bring wisdom if we learn from our mistakes. As Solomon reflected back on his life he understood that the reason he made such awful mistakes was because he forgot his Creator. Isn't that the problem that many young people have? Living to please God isn't as important as chasing after the lusts of the flesh. Temptations will always be there, but if you forget your Creator then you'll fall into sin. Solomon forgot God and the pleasures he embraced were empty. Unfortunately, many people who claim to have walked with Jesus for years also make grievous mistakes by following lust rather than following God. It took Solomon a lifetime to understand that he had lived his life without honoring God, but none of his worldly pursuits held any true pleasure. "Vanity of vanities, saith the preacher; all is vanity." Ecclesiastes 12:8. Vanity is translated from the Hebrew word "hebel" meaning vapor or breath. James agreed with Solomon when he wrote about daily choices we make. "Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away. For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that. But now ye rejoice in your boastings: all such rejoicing is evil. " James 4:14-16. Our choices in life need to be God-centered; all else is vanity.
Wisdom is the gift that God gave to Solomon and Christians are also given gifts. "For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; to another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: but all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will." 1 Corinthians 12:8-11. These spiritual gifts are given in order that every Christian can contribute to the whole body of Christ. The gifts are varied and you probably have more than one gift. "And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ" Ephesians 4:11-12. Have you discovered what gift, or gifts, you've been given? If you haven't then maybe you've been wasting that gift like Solomon had wasted his wisdom for so many years. Maybe it's time for you to discover your gift and start serving the Lord.
What's the point of having Spiritual gifts? Is it so that we can brag to our friends or seem more spiritual than others? Absolutely not. The gifts are to be used to glorify God. If Christians act in a Godly manner toward each other, non-Christians will see something special about us and ask questions. This could be the trigger that brings a lost soul to Christ. If we nurture our spiritual gifts then Spiritual fruit will follow. "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit." Galatians 5:22-25. It may take time to discover your gift. When a person first comes to Christ there are many changes that take place. New attitudes replace the old ones as the new babe in Christ grows and matures. The only way to come to a full understanding of how you need to change from worldly views to those of God is to study. Diligent study led by the Holy Spirit will open your eyes to the wonders of God's riches. Applying the new understanding will bring changes that will amaze your family and friends. "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." 2 Timothy 2:15. The word "study" comes from the Greek word "spoudazo" and means "to give diligence to" If you're diligent in studying Scripture and applying it to your life then you'll walk closely with God. You won't have to be ashamed of your attitudes or actions. If you see nothing wrong with getting angry or being sexually impure, then you're not studying Scripture diligently. You'll miss out on discovering the spiritual gift God wants to give you. One day you'll look back with regret, just like Solomon.
Why should we study to do all things according to God's will? Solomon summed it up. "Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil." Ecclesiastics 12:13-14. Nothing is hidden from God. He knows what you think and He knows what you do. You may try to hide something from a parent, spouse, or friend, but you cannot hide it from God. It's God who we need to honor and please. To know how to please Him we study. It may surprise you to know that Christians will be judged. "Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire." 1 Corinthians 3:12-15. Our sins are forgiven, but we will face Christ. When we stand before Him we'll see the nail prints in His hands and know they are there because of His love for us. He gave His life freely for our salvation. Can't you give yourself to Him as a living sacrifice? Study Scripture and pray so you'll be led by the Holy Spirit to change your mind about sin and live your life to conform to God. Use the spiritual gifts to serve our Lord. This life is a vapor which will soon be over. On the eternal scale only those things done for Christ will last. Christians have hope beyond this life. "If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable." 1 Corinthians 15:19. We have eternal hope and our life on earth should reflect that hope. What have you done with the gifts He has given you? What have you done with the greatest gift of all...salvation through Jesus Christ.
The wise words of Scripture truly are goads prodding us to live a more Godly life. The Shepherd who gives those words is Jesus Christ. Study now...be diligent...don't forget God.
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: Discerning the post-election presser - Bill Wilson - www.dailyjot.com
In reviewing the transcript of the post-election press conference with President Donald Trump, it is obvious that the news media, CNN in particular, is well-integrated into the Democratic Party's mantra and philosophy. There was disrespect, a lack of questioning about policy, tremendous amount of questioning about Democratic Party campaign issues, and an overall atmosphere of hostility. The news media is truly an issue of concern because of its collective bias, and quite frankly, outrageous group think resulting in ideological bigotry and political intolerance. This generation of reporters appears to have little ability to see both sides of an issue and report it with integrity. This is divisive.
Think about the assumptions in just these questions: "Mr. President, over the course of the last several days of the campaign, sir - sir, at the end of the campaign, you repeatedly said that Americans need to fear Democrats. You said Democrats would "unleash a wave of violent crime that endangers families everywhere." Why are you pitting Americans against Americans?"... "Mr. President. I wanted to challenge you on one of the statements that you made in the tail end of the campaign in the midterms, that this caravan was an "invasion." As you know, Mr. President, the caravan was not an invasion. It's a group of migrants moving up from Central America towards the border with the U.S."
The reporter interrupted the president during his answers and was pressing him with campaign rhetoric. The assumption was that the Democratic Party campaign theme of the president pitting Americans against Americans was truth. In context, the president was pointing out that the Democratic Party was weak on crime because they seek to allow illegals into the nation. But somehow that comes out of a reporter's mouth as pitting Americans against Americans. In the other example, the reporter tried to establish the Democratic Party position that the thousands in the approaching caravan were not invaders, but migrants, and that the Republican campaign ad falsely showed "migrants" climbing over the wall into America. The president said that it was real footage of people entering America illegally. But see how the reporter twisted the facts?
These are just two examples of how the facts are misrepresented to show something totally different than the truth. The mindset of these reporters is that if a position disagrees with their idea of what is right, it is pitting Americans against Americans. If a position disagrees with someone of a leftist persuasion, they are a bigot, racist, Nazi, misogynist, whatever. If they don't want you on the Supreme Court, for example, they promote false news stories that publicly convict you as a serial sex offender. And they present this "news" in ways that make it sound credible and air-tight. The news media is part and parcel to this divisive atmosphere in America. It is the master of deception. As you discern the brouhaha aftermath of the post-election presser, take the Messiah's Matthew 24:4 advice: "Take heed that no man deceive you."
Daily Devotion: Just Passing Through - By Greg Laurie -
We are here for only a moment, visitors and strangers in the land as our ancestors were before us. Our days on earth are like a passing shadow, gone so soon without a trace. -1 Chronicles 29:15
A little boy who was out flying his kite let it rise higher and higher until it could no longer be seen. A man walked by and noticed the string in the boy's hand. Looking up at the sky he said, "I can't even see your kite. How do you know it's still there?"
"Because," the boy replied, "I can feel its tug."
As Christians, we can feel the tug of Heaven. We have a longing for something that Earth never can deliver. We know that ultimately, only Heaven can. The great moments on Earth are just pale imitations of greater things to come. We were created for something more-much more.
Augustine said of God, "Thou has made us for Thyself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless till they rest in Thee."
Because of this homesickness for Heaven, we see this world-its culture and way of thinking-for what it is. The Bible says, "For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world" (1 John 2:16 NLT).
Jim Reeves had it right when he sang, "This world is not my home. I'm just a-passin' through." That's true. We're just passing through. As 1 Chronicles 29:15 says, "We are here for only a moment, visitors and strangers in the land as our ancestors were before us. Our days on earth are like a passing shadow, gone so soon without a trace" (NLT).
We are built for another place. Jesus said, "I go to prepare a place for you" (John 14:2 NKJV). As Christians, we need to remember that we're going to a real place. Heaven is a prepared place for prepared people. Are you prepared?
FROM THE HEART
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