Prophecy Update Newsletter
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
The Tribulation Chronicles I - A Message from the Missing - By Alice Childs -
As I am beginning this series of chronicles, everything is going along pretty much as it always has. Life continues to slide along, spooling out - unwinding like thread pulled from a skein of yarn. People are still getting up and going to work; children are (as I write this now) in the full swing of their school year, counting down the days until the Christmas break and preparing for the downhill slide of the school year. Some people are getting married and starting families; others are coming to the end of their lives. People are buying groceries, going on business trips, doing laundry, working on projects, paying bills, and simply doing the myriad of things that make up life in normal times.
However, with increasing frequency, "normal times" aren't as "normal" as they used to be, are they? Our society is not as gentle as it once was. People are much more self-centered and callous. Children (and adults as well) are less respectful, a lot less kind than before; and our culture, indeed the entire world, is much less safe than it used to be. There is no denying this fact.
There is a palpable fear that is growing within the hearts of everyone everywhere. Regardless of where one lives, there is an indefinable "something" that permeates the very air - a sense of looming danger that is disturbing and disquieting - a sense of an impending disaster that lies just beyond what we can see. As Shakespeare once said, it is obvious to anyone who is honest that "something wicked this way comes." Indeed, if you are honest, you too must admit that you can feel an ill wind of change headed our way.
Well, you are right; something is coming. A gathering storm is on the horizon, and when it hits, it will come suddenly; and for many who are too self-absorbed to notice, it will come unexpectedly. The repercussions that this cosmic change will leave in its wake will be be cataclysmic beyond anyone's ability to comprehend. It is those who will be in the aftermath of this "event horizon" that these series of "letters to the left behind" is meant to address.
Overall, for the time being, everything is still relatively ticking along like it always has, with the exception that the road of life on which we are traveling is a lot more bumpy and fraught with dangers both seen and unseen.
There are ominous events occurring now that are building like great thunderheads looming in the distance that are getting larger, stronger, and nearer - ever nearer. The fury of a great storm is about to be unleashed.
There is an imminent event that is going to break in upon an unprepared and largely unsuspecting world like the sudden explosion of a great caldera; an unforeseen disaster that will leave in its wake devastation on a scale unknown before; an event so unprecedented that there is no frame of reference within human history with which to compare it. When it comes, this event will, at any moment, change everything; and all that will come after this unprecedented moment will be the likes of which this world has never experienced before, or ever will again.
A change is coming all right, and for those of you reading these chronicles on this side of this event, take these words as a warning; for time and life as you have always known it is about to run out. This coming event can and will happen in an instant of time too small to be measured or quantified.
To those who will not heed the numerous warnings that have been literally shouted in every venue available by those of us who will have left this earth in this coming event; to those of you who didn't listen to your family, your friends, or others like me who tried to tell you - to prepare you - those of us who pleaded with you, witnessed to you, endured your scoffing and anger when we tried to warn you; we who prayed and agonized before the throne of God on your behalf; it is to you, who will be the "left behind ones," that these series of messages is written.
You wouldn't listen before, but after the event has taken place, everything will change; and then, perhaps, you will at last be motivated to hear what the missing ones have to say. So I am going to write to you from the perspective of where you (will) find yourself post event. In essence, these letters come to you as a series of messages from those of us who are now (will be) among the earth's missing ones.
So, without delay, let me tell you now precisely what has (will have) happened. I will tell you where we have gone, who is among "the missing," why we have been taken, and why you were not.
I will also leave for you in this series of chronicles, a detailed accounting of what is coming in your very near future. What you do with the information that I and others like me will have left you will likely impact your personal safety. But much more importantly, what you choose to do with the information we will have left for you will determine the eternal destiny of your immortal soul.
As you may have guessed by now, this "event" that I am referring to is none other than the rapture of the Church of Jesus Christ - the "catching away" of every genuine believer (along with all babies, young children, and the mentally infirm or handicapped) who by faith alone, placed his/her trust in the atoning death, burial, and bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ-God the Son. This is the very same Jesus who came to Earth in human form in order to pay in full the sin debt owed by every single human being alive - all who are cursed by sin.
This entire world system - this entire global sphere - is slated for destruction, because the wrath and vengeance of Almighty God is about to commence upon this wicked, vile, sin-loving, debauched, Christ-rejecting world. He is going to judge, in perfect righteousness, the inhabitants. He is about to exact justice on rebellious man, and to restore to its intended perfection His creation which sin has utterly corrupted. Life as you have always known it will NEVER return. You need to understand and accept this truth right from the start.
That's the bad news. You need to know this and accept it for the absolute reality that it is. Wishing it were not so, denying the reality of it, or ignoring the truth of it will not change the things that are coming, not one iota. It was your own refusal to accept the gift of God's so great salvation which would have spared you this time of judgment. Your pride is why you now find yourself left behind here to have to endure this time of coming darkness and woe.
But do not be dismayed. There is yet HOPE. The Lord who is "rich in mercy" is still willing to save "all who will come to Him by faith."
Even in the midst of the horrendous, oncoming judgments that God is about to mete out, He is willing, for a time, to extend His mercy and His saving grace, because God is love and He is "not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."
You made a tragic choice by refusing His great salvation during the Church Age - the Age of Grace (the time when God was calling out of the world a people unto Himself - those whom He called His body and the bride of Christ). That "age" or era closed when the Church of Jesus Christ was raptured - snatched out - of this world; when each member of the true Church (both the living and the dead "in Christ") was changed from our mortal, sin-corrupted bodies into new, immortal, glorified bodies and taken to the "Father's House" in Heaven via this event the Bible calls the rapture (catching away) of the Church.
I will go into more detail regarding the rapture event in the next letter so that you will clearly know and understand the truth of what has happened. For as you will see, Satan, the Father of Lies, the "god" of this world system, has already prepared a LIE that is so audacious, so convincing, that only those who turn to Christ for salvation will not be taken in by it.
Once the Tribulation begins, the world will only have seven more years left under this fallen Luciferian system. These last seven years will be the most horrific, most devastating, most cataclysmic, most dark and violent time this world will have ever known in all of human history. Seven years - that's it, before King Jesus returns in righteousness to renovate and to restore "Paradise Lost."
Let me end this letter today with the most important thing - the only thing that now matters - that is the salvation of your immortal soul. For you see, the sobering truth is this: you will almost certainly lose your life during this final seven years. That is just the plain, unvarnished truth; and if you should die lost, continuing to reject God's offer of salvation, then you will spend eternity in a literal, burning place known as the Lake of Fire. I cannot be any clearer or more truthful than that.
The reality is this: very few of the possibly five to six billion souls left here after the rapture will live to the end of this seven-year time of the Tribulation - very few. In fact, Jesus Himself said that if He did not return to bring a halt to this time (if He allowed it to run its course unimpeded), that no flesh (no living creature, including man) would be spared. This is how devastatingly horrific these last seven years will be.
So before we go any further in this series of messages to the left behind, let me make sure that you know how to come to salvation. Your physical life will likely end during this time; however, your soul is immortal. And you (the conscious, sentient, core of you) will exist in complete consciousness in an immortal body forever - either in Heaven in a new glorified, immortal body, or in Hell in an immortal body that can never die but can and will suffer agonal torment forever. Your final destination all depends on the choice you make right now.
None of us is guaranteed that we will live even the next five minutes. We are all merely one last heartbeat and one final breath away from eternity at any given moment. So please, if you are reading this missive and millions upon millions (perhaps billions) of people worldwide have instantly disappeared without a trace, then you have already made one tremendously poor choice. Please do not make another by refusing God's offer of salvation again.
How to be Saved
(1) Why you need a Savior
You need a Savior because you are a sinner. "There is NONE righteous, no, not one" (Romans 3:10 ). "For ALL have sinned and come short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23).
"For the wages [penalty] of sin is [eternal] death, but the gift of God is [eternal] life in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 6:23).
You see, we are not sinners because we commit sins; we commit sins because we are sinners. It's what we are intrinsically. We are born sinners under the curse of sin; and as such, we need a Savior.
(2) What you must do to be saved
You must believe (place your faith and complete trust) in the Lord Jesus Christ alone.
You must believe that Jesus Christ is God who came to Earth wrapped in human flesh, and that His death paid in full the wages (penalty) for all of mankind's sins. You must believe in His sinless life, in His atoning death, in His burial and in His bodily resurrection from the tomb, according to the scriptures. This is the only gospel that saves: Salvation is by God's grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone.
"For I delivered unto you first of all that which I (the apostle Paul) also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the scriptures" (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
"That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved" (Romans 10:9-10).
Please keep reading the chronicles, as in them I will give you details of all that is soon to be coming upon the earth. Take these messages to heart, because post rapture, once a "covenant" between Israel and "the many" is confirmed by a coming, charismatic world leader, then there will be only seven years left, and you are not guaranteed that you will live even the next seven minutes.
Until next time...
Saudi Arabia v Iran: What's behind bitter feud between Middle Eastern powers? -
Tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran are on the rise as the two states have engaged in a bitter war of words over Yemen, Lebanon and Syria. RT explores key current conflicts between the two and the possibility of a full-blown war between Tehran and Riyadh.
On Monday, Riyadh said that an attack targeting Saudi territory that was launched by Yemeni Houthi rebels on Saturday was in fact orchestrated by Tehran, and denounced it as a "clear act of aggression." It also used the incident to accuse Iran of "aggression that targets neighboring countries, and threatens peace and security in the region and globally."
In response, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned the Saudis of Iran's might, telling Riyadh on Wednesday that "those more powerful than you have failed to do anything against the Iranian nation." He also described the recent missile attack near Riyadh's international airport as "Yemeni people react[ing] to the bombardment of their country."
Riyadh and Tehran are engaged in a bitter dispute over Yemen, where the Saudi-led coalition is waging a military campaign against Shiite Houthi rebels in support of the ousted Yemeni President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi. Riyadh accuses Iran of supplying weapons to the Houthis, which Tehran denies, although it admits it backs the rebel cause.
In another recent development, Saad Hariri, the prime minister of Lebanon, abruptly announced his resignation, citing fears of assassination and accusing Iran and its local ally, Shiite militant movement Hezbollah, of a "desire to destroy the Arab world." Days after his resignation, Riyadh accused Lebanon of "declaring war" on Saudi Arabia by allowing Hezbollah "aggression" against the Gulf kingdom. Meanwhile, some Lebanese authorities claim Hariri is now being "held" in Saudi Arabia.
Syria has also become major playfield for the two regional powers. While Iranian forces came to assist and train the Syrian Army following the request of Bashar Assad's government, the Saudis have emerged as one of the main backers of the Syrian armed opposition groups. In April, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Jubeir said that Iran has "no place in Syria or in any other part of the world."
The two states are also struggling for influence over neighboring Iraq. Tehran funded and trained the local Shiite militia, helping Iraq with its war on terrorism. The Saudis rushed to improve their relations with the Iraqi government, which had been damaged by Saddam Hussein's 1990 invasion of Kuwait.
The two old foes are also engaged in a bitter war of words over alleged links to terrorism. In May, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman al-Saud criticized Iran for its "extremist ideology" and ambitions to "control the Islamic world." Tehran responded by accusing Riyadh of "confrontational and destructive policies." It also claimed that it is Saudi Arabia that supports terrorist groups, including Islamic State (IS, ISIS/ISIL).
Some of the origins of the rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran are of religious nature and go back to a centuries-old doctrinal conflict within Islam: a more than 1,000-year-old argument between Sunnis and Shia.
Relations between the two countries have never been particularly friendly. However, their rapid deterioration could be traced back to the times of the Iranian 1979 Islamic Revolution, when a religious dispute was exacerbated by geopolitical and ideological differences.
The revolutionaries called for the overthrow of monarchies and their replacement with Islamic republics, raising concerns in Saudi Arabia and other Persian Gulf states, most of which are kingdoms. The leader of the revolution, Ayatollah Khomeini, questioned the legitimacy of the Saudi monarchy and accused it of protecting the interests of its Western allies rather than those of the Islamic world.
Relations between Tehran and Riyadh took another blow in 2011 during the Arab Spring, when Iran supported Shiite forces, while Saudi Arabia backed Sunni ones. In 2016, Riyadh severed diplomatic ties with Tehran after Iranian protesters set the Saudi embassy ablaze. The crowd was protesting Riyadh's execution of a prominent Shiite cleric, Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, accused of inciting riots in the kingdom.
Outbreak of war 'not in Riyadh's interest'
The recent increase in tensions between Riyadh and Tehran is just a "war of words," Konstantin Dudarev, a Middle East expert and a specialist in Arabic studies, told RT, adding that Saudi Arabia's belligerent rhetoric is unlikely to be followed by real actions. The Saudi officials and particularly Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman have repeatedly stated that Riyadh is not interested in war with Tehran, he added.
"A war does not serve the interests of Saudi Arabia" as it declared "modernization and economic development its strategic goals," Dudarev said, adding that Riyadh would "do everything it can" to avoid an outbreak of conflict.
Udo Steinbach, a political analyst from the German Humboldt-Viadrina Governance Platform think tank, also doubted that the ongoing war of words between the Saudis and Iranians would lead to a real military conflict. However, he drew attention to the fact that the relations between the two regional powers have clearly deteriorated in recent months, which has negatively affected the political and security situation in the Middle East.
The analyst particularly said that the resignation of Lebanese PM Hariri, which he called "an indication of tense relations between the Saudis and Iran," could lead to the resumption of the Lebanese Civil War.
Kamel Wazne, a political analyst from Lebanon, believes that "the Saudis are not able to start a war against Iran unless [US] President Trump loses his mind and gets involved directly along with Israel in this war." Wazne also called Hariri "a victim" and "a hostage" of the rivalry between Tehran and Riyadh, arguing that the PM "does not believe that Lebanon is able to afford a regional confrontation."
The Iran-Hamas-Hezbollah Connection - by Khaled Abu Toameh - https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/11330/iran-hamas-hezbollah
The Lebanese Prime Minister, Saad Hariri, has had enough. Last week, Iran finalized its takeover of Lebanon when Hariri resigned, and reportedly fled to Saudi Arabia.
Hariri, denouncing Hezbollah and its Iranian backers, said he feared for his life. Hariri has good reason to be afraid of Hezbollah, the powerful Shia terror group and Iranian proxy that effectively controls Lebanon.
Indications show that Iran and Hezbollah are also planning to extend their control to the Gaza Strip. Iran already provides Hamas with financial and military aid. It is precisely the support of Iran that has enabled Hamas to hold in power in the Gaza Strip for the past 10 years. It is also thanks to Iran that Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad, another major terror group in the Gaza Strip, are in possession of thousands of missiles and rockets. It is Iranian money that allows Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad to continue digging terror tunnels under the border with Israel.
Relations between Iran and Hamas have grown stronger in the past few weeks. Last month, a senior Hamas delegation visited Tehran to attend the funeral of the father of the senior Iranian security official, Qasem Soleimani. A few weeks earlier, another senior Hamas delegation visited Tehran to brief Iranian leaders on the latest developments surrounding the "reconciliation" agreement reached between Hamas and Mahmoud Abbas's Palestinian Authority (PA).
It was the first time senior Hamas officials visited Iran since relations between the two sides became strained in 2011. That year, Iran suspended its ties with Hamas over the latter's refusal to support Syria's dictator, Bashar Assad, against his opponents in its civil war. The sudden rapprochement between Hamas and Iran has raised concerns among Abbas and his Palestinian Authority officials regarding Hamas's sincerity in implementing the "reconciliation" agreement. President Abbas and his officials wonder why Hamas rushed into arms of Iran immediately after reaching the "reconciliation" accord under the auspices of the Egyptian authorities.
Iran and Hezbollah are no fans of Abbas and the Palestinian Authority. Abbas is terrified that Hamas is trying to bring Iran and its Hezbollah proxy into the Gaza Strip.
Abbas and his PA are eager to return to the Gaza Strip, but the presence of Iran there creates a serious problem. Like Hariri, Abbas would have good reason to fear for his life if Hamas brings the Iranians and Hezbollah into the Gaza Strip.
Abbas's fear is also not unjustified. Earlier this week, a senior Hamas official, Musa Abu Marzouk, disclosed that his movement and Hezbollah were working towards strengthening their relations. "Relations between Hamas and Hezbollah were never cut off," Abu Marzouk stated.
"We have ongoing contacts and understandings. But we preferred to keep them away from the spotlight. Hamas and Hezbollah are in one line in the fight against Israel, and we coordinate our positions regarding the Palestinian cause. Hamas will continue to cooperate with resistance groups that support the Palestinian resistance."
The alliance between Hamas and Hezbollah is a direct result of the renewed relations between Iran and Hamas. With the help of Hezbollah, Iran has managed to take control of large parts of Syria. With the help of Hezbollah, Iran already controls Lebanon. Now that the Iranians have sole control over Lebanon, their eyes are set on the Gaza Strip. They know that the only way to access the Gaza Strip is through the Hamas door. Iran wants to see Hezbollah inside the Gaza Strip. Hamas, for its part, is thirsting for Iranian resources. Hamas knows that it will have to pay a price: allowing Iran and Hezbollah to set foot in the Gaza Strip. Judging from the remarks of Abu Marzouk, Hamas appears to be happy to pay the price.
Hariri, Abbas and many Sunni Arab countries, such as Saudi Arabia, felt betrayed by the Obama Administration's policy of dÃ©tente towards Iran -- a policy that emboldened the Iranians and gave them a green light to meddle in the internal affairs of Arab countries to try to establish, as they seem to have done, a "Shiite Crescent" from Persia through Yemen and now Lebanon, clear to the Mediterranean Sea.
The Sunni Arabs are apparently particularly worried about the nuclear deal signed between the Obama Administration and Iran. They feel that the Obama Administration's attempt to appease the Iranians has emboldened the country that is the world's leading sponsor of terrorism. Iran has since taken advantage of the nuclear deal to threaten and try to terrorize America, its friends and its Arab allies.
Abbas has multiple reasons to be worried about the Hamas-Hezbollah alliance. Here is another one: a recent meeting in Beirut between Hamas leader Saleh Arouri and Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah was yet another sign of Hamas's effort to pave the way for Iran and Hezbollah to infiltrate the Gaza Strip and meddle in the internal affairs of the Palestinians.
A recent meeting in Beirut between Hamas leader Saleh Arouri (left) and Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah (right) was another sign of Hamas's effort to pave the way for Iran and Hezbollah to infiltrate the Gaza Strip. (Image source: Hezbollah via Al Manar)
Hamas has already stated repeatedly that it has absolutely no intention of laying down its weapons as promised for the "reconciliation" agreement with the Palestinian Authority. Hamas is prepared to cede to PA President Mahmoud Abbas limited civilian control of the Gaza Strip, but has been clear that it will never dismantle its security apparatus or military wing. Hamas wants to bring the Iranians and Hezbollah into the Gaza Strip to counterbalance pressure from Abbas and Egypt and other countries to disarm and hand control over to Abbas. If Abbas ever returns to the Gaza Strip, he will find himself sitting not only with Hamas, but also with Iran and Hezbollah, who consider him a traitor and puppet in the hands of Israel and the US.
Alarmed by the rapprochement between Hamas and Hezbollah and Iran, Saudi Arabia earlier this week summoned Abbas for urgent talks in Riyadh. The Saudis have been following with concern the visits by Hamas leaders to Iran and Hezbollah, and are worried that Abbas may face the same fate as Hariri.
Abbas may well wish to steer clear of the Gaza Strip: Iran and Hezbollah are working with Hamas to establish a "joint front" against Israel. Hamas's decision to tilt towards Iran and Hezbollah discloses the truth: it is not headed towards moderation and pragmatism, but the very opposite. This does not bode well for the current Trump Administration's efforts to achieve peace in the Middle East.
Without stopping Iran and Hezbollah from spreading their influence and control to the Gaza Strip and Arab countries, the prospects of peace seem rather dim. In fact, the prospects of war seem pretty close, as Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad meet in the middle to discuss their plans for war against Israel. Failing to stop Iran and Hezbollah would mean that Abbas may soon find themselves hiding with Hariri in Saudi Arabia.
Is This Year's Bountiful Wine Harvest in Israel a Prophetic Signpost for Redemption? - By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz - https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/97468/years-bountiful-wine-harvest-israel-prophetic-signpost-redemption-video/#88h6yqO5PDLOKHy2.99
"And threshing floors shall be piled with grain, and vats shall overflow with new wine and oil." Joel 2:24 (The Israel Bible™)
While global wine production has fallen to historic lows, barrels in Israel's wineries are overflowing with a blessed harvest that fulfills prophecy in the most undeniable way.
Zachary Waller, Executive Director of HaYovel, first noticed this blessing of bounty when his organization brought Christian volunteers this summer to help with the grape harvest in Har Bracha, as it has done every season for the last twelve years. It was time to harvest but the grapes weren't yet ripe. Waller was concerned there wouldn't be enough work for his 200 eager volunteers.
"Before the harvest, it's difficult to tell how many grapes there are and what condition they are in until you are actually out in the vineyards and have your hands on the vines," Waller told Breaking Israel News. "It seemed like one week later, all the grapes ripened at once, and once we started picking, it quickly became clear there were a lot."
Waller reported the harvest was so bountiful, the vintners did not have enough barrels to hold the wine. He explained that this was the clear realization of prophecy.
And threshing floors shall be piled with grain, And vats shall overflow with new wine and oil. Joel 2:24
Not only was the prophecy accurate regarding abundance, but, as the Prophet Joel also prophesied, the wine harvest was a source of honor to Israel.
In response to His people Hashem declared: "I will grant you the new grain, The new wine, and the new oil, and you shall have them in abundance. Nevermore will I let you be a mockery among the nations." Joel 2:19
This season's amazing harvest in Israel comes in a year when wine-producing countries around the world are experiencing major shortages. The International Organisation of Vine and Wine announced last month that heatwaves across Europe led to small harvests in the main producing countries. Wine production has dropped to levels rarely seen in the past half-century. American wine producers are also struggling as a result of wildfires in California.
Ayal Tzair, production manager of Golan Winery, reported that his winery was similarly blessed. Despite the winery being one of the largest producers of fine wine in Israel, it was a challenge to cope with the unexpectedly blessed harvest, he said.
"We are very careful about planning and we carefully control the quantity of the harvest. We cut back our vines, which reduces the quantity of grapes but improves the quality," Tzair explained to Breaking Israel News. "We had carefully planned how many barrels we wanted to fill, expecting to leave about one-third empty."
Most of its wines are processed in large stainless steel vats, but the winery has 9,500 oak barrels imported from France for their finer wines. Each barrel holds approximately 60 gallons, or enough wine to fill 600 bottles.
"By the end of the harvest, there were so many top-quality grapes, we had no choice but to fill all our barrels," Tzair said. "In my 20 years with the winery, I've never seen anything like this."
Amichai Ariel has vineyards and a winery in the hills of Hebron. Though he is over 100 miles south of the Golan, the year's unusual bounty extended to his vineyards as well.
"I certainly had a fine harvest," Ariel told Breaking Israel News. "Every year I manage to add a few more vines. But I don't measure blessings. Everything God sends is good, though some blessings are more pleasant than others. It is all part of a plan, and He has told us what that plan is."
Tsair has helped the Golan winery become a multi-million dollar project, but his visions of the future of wine production are much more spiritual.
"Every morning, I read the prayers concerning the Temple service," Tsair said. "I dream that one day I will be producing those wines that are poured out on the altar."
Be Separate unto God: Don't Fraternize with the Enemy - Nathele Graham - firstname.lastname@example.org
We are in a spiritual war and to fight the battle we need spiritual weapons. The enemy uses violence and sin against people in his aggressive fight against Jesus, but Christians aren't to use weapons of hatred. Our battle plan is to stand unyieldingly upon God's word, otherwise we can easily be tempted into becoming a double agent. Consorting with the enemy can't be tolerated in a physical battle and is also unacceptable in a spiritual battle. God is serious about His children separating themselves from the world. It seems as if there's a "so what" attitude towards sin and Christians have no problem joining with non-Christians. We want to be liked and popular so God's ways are ignored and worldly attitudes are adopted. "Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man's sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets." Luke 6:22-23. Sadly, many Christians have surrendered to the enemy rather than being separate unto God.
Christians are sinners saved by the grace of Jesus Christ and that should mean everything to us. Our sins are forgiven and taken away when we first accept Christ's sacrifice for redemption and from that point on our desire should be to live for Jesus instead of living for Satan. I'm not talking about doing works to make you more saved, but living for Him because you love Him. "Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you."2 Corinthians 6:14-17. Paul quoted from Old Testament prophecies regarding the coming Messiah found in Ezekiel and Isaiah. Come out from among the heathen and separate from the sin that consumes them. Fellowship with fellow Christians and help each other to stand firm on God's word. Put Christ first and fight against the enemy.
Separating from the people around us who don't honor God isn't a new idea put forth in the New Testament. God gave the Israelites the Law of Moses and some of those laws were specifically to keep God's chosen people separate from the pagan culture around them. The heathens embraced all things that God abhors, such as child sacrifice to demon gods and perverted sexual practices. God warned the children of Israel against marrying into the heathen culture around them. "Neither shalt thou make marriages with them; thy daughter thou shalt not give unto his son, nor his daughter shalt thou take unto thy son. For they will turn away they thy son from following me, that they may serve other gods: so will the anger of the LORD be kindled against you, and destroy thee suddenly. But thus shall ye deal with them; ye shall destroy their altars, and break down their images, and cut down their groves, and burn their graven images with fire." Deuteronomy 7:3-5. That's very straightforward. If a believer is yoked to an unbeliever strife can follow. This was true for Israel and it's true for Christians. If a son or daughter decides to marry someone who rejects Christ then they go against God's will. The non-believing spouse is seldom happy when the Christian determines to attend worship services or give money. The children have no commitment from both parents to honor God so the un-believing parent is a very poor example to the children. There are two influences in this world, God Almighty and Satan. "No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon." Matthew 6:24. If you don't love and serve God then you serve Satan. If you're married and then accept Christ as your Saviour, remember that marriage is sacred to God. Don't compromise your faith but do everything you can to bring your spouse to Christ. No matter what situation you find yourself in, honor Christ.
The Christians in Corinth had not separated themselves from the world. Sin was welcomed into their congregation, which is very much like many congregations today. "I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators: yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world." 1 Corinthians 5:9-10. We live in a fallen world, but we aren't to live like the fallen world. We work with people who don't know Christ and we shop in stores along with the unsaved and may even attend social gatherings with them. Even though we're in the world with non-believers we must remember that we serve Jesus. You may be laughed at because of your resistance to sin, but that is Satan laughing, not people. People aren't the enemy, but the god they serve is. Make no mistake, if a person doesn't serve Christ they serve Satan no matter how sweet and kindhearted they are. It may be necessary to be around the unsaved but we aren't to participate in their lifestyles. Dress modestly, don't use foul language, and keep Christ first in the choices you make.
What if the person who embraces sin claims to be a Christian? "But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat." 1 Corinthians 5:11. People who claim to be Christian but have chosen to live in such a way that they honor Satan have committed treason in this spiritual battle and we aren't to keep company with them. "For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within? But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person." 1 Corinthians 5:12-13. So much for not judging. The unsaved have no standards to guide moral conduct, but Christians have God's word. We aren't to judge in order to condemn but we are to judge with righteous judgment when discerning sin. "Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment." John 7:24. God is clear about what is sin. The worldly people who follow Satan need to be witnessed to, but don't join yourself to them in partnerships. We also need to be sure when pointing fingers at others that there isn't sin in our own life that needs to be dealt with. Be sure you aren't keeping company with the enemy.
Jesus is our example and He did spend time with sinners. He is God and is perfect but chose to become human in order to bring the gift of salvation to lost sinners. He spent time with tax collectors, Pharisees, prostitutes, and others who needed to find salvation through Him. If we follow His example and spend time with homosexuals, drug addicts, fornicators, and others who practice sin, are we fraternizing with the enemy? That depends on your motive for associating with them. Are you witnessing to them or are you yoking yourself to them in friendship? Only Jesus, our High Priest, was perfect and would never yield to temptation. "For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people's: for this he did once, when he offered up himself." Hebrews 7:26-27. If you're spending time with non-believers who are living happily in their sin, then you need to be sharing the Gospel with them. If you yoke yourself to them you just may end up accepting their sin and may even participate in it. Fraternizing with the enemy can only bring grief. Satan is the enemy and those who reject Christ serve the enemy.
Pride can cause a person to think they won't be influenced by the sin of others. "Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump? Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as year are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us" 1 Corinthians 5:6-7. It's easy to be deceived. Sin (leaven) can overtake anyone who hasn't put on the full armor of God. The helmet of salvation should guard your thoughts from enemy attack. Every day activities can numb a person to sin. Television is a terrible influence. Do you watch soap operas? MTV? Cartoons? Do any of these shows you allow into your brain glorify God? Make the choice to remove sinful influences from your life and don't give Satan a chance to draw you into his schemes. Before you accepted Christ you embraced sin but that should have changed. "Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God." 1 Corinthians 6:9-11. Everyone has sinned but Christians are forgiven. Don't go back into the sin that once had a hold on you. Don't spend time in the enemy's camp, but stay close to Jesus.
We have freedom in Christ, but that freedom doesn't include the freedom to indulge our flesh. If a Christian soldier is walking close to our Commander in Chief there won't be any fraternizing with the enemy. Witnessing to the lost is good, but accepting their lifestyle is fraternizing with the enemy. Always follow Jesus."Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh to fulfill the lusts thereof". Romans 13:13-14. Brothers and sisters, the enemy is becoming bolder. If Christians choose to lower their defense and embrace the enemy's tactics, this battle will be tough to fight. Choose to follow Christ in everything you do. Stand strong.
To succeed in spiritual warfare, fellowship with Christ and don't fraternize with the enemy.
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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Does the Bible Include Science? - Dr. David Reagan -
Most people think of Science and the Bible as being in conflict with each other. Would you be surprised to find out that a scientist has used the science of mathematical probability to prove that the Bible is the Word of God, and Jesus is the Son of God?
For many years, I have been quoting a booklet by Peter Stoner called Science Speaks. I like to use a remarkable illustration from it that scientifically validates Jesus as God in the flesh.
Peter Stoner was chairman of the Mathematics and Astronomy departments at Pasadena City College until 1953 when he moved to Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California. There he served as chairman of the science division.
In the edition I purchased, there was a foreword by Dr. Harold Hartzler, an officer of the American Scientific Affiliation. He wrote that the manuscript had been carefully reviewed by a committee of his organization and that quote, "The mathematical analysis included is based upon principles of probability which are thoroughly sound." He further stated that in the opinion of the affiliation, Professor Stoner quote, "Has applied these principles in a proper and convincing way."
As I said, most people think of the Bible and Science as being in direct conflict with each other. But, Peter Stoner's book shows how the two can be complimentary and compatible.
Science Speaks in the Bible
Stoner begins his book with a very interesting insight about a book written by Charles Young. He was the author of the standard college textbook on astronomy that was published in 1898. Writing in the 1958 revised edition of his book, Stoner pointed out that his copy of Young's textbook was full of scientific errors.
Now think about that for a moment. A Science book that was only 60 years old was full of scientific errors. Yet, the Bible, written between 3,500 to 2,000 years ago, does not contain any scientific errors! How can that be? The answer, of course, has to be that the Bible is supernatural in origin.
Consider for a moment the following scientific truths contained in the Bible.
For example, the shape of the earth is mentioned in Isaiah 40:22. The passage refers specifically to "the circle of the earth."
Gravity can be found in Job 26:7 where the passage says, "God hangs the earth on nothing."
Ecclesiastes 1:8 mentions atmospheric circulation.
A reference to ocean currents can be found in Psalm 8:8.
The hydraulic cycle is described in Ecclesiastes 1:7.
The significance of blood as the key to life is found in Leviticus 17:11.
Modern laws of hygiene can be found in Leviticus 11 through 15.
If that is not enough, take a look at these words in Romans 8:21, "The creation will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God." This is an expression of what is known in physics as The Second Law of Thermodynamics, namely, that all of creation is in bondage to decay.
These are only a few examples of scientific truths written in the Scriptures long before they were "discovered" by scientists!
In contrast, consider the following revelations of Mohammed that are contained in the Hadith, one of the sacred books of Islam. He wrote:
* The earth is flat like a carpet.
* The sun sets in a muddy spring.
* Stars are closer to earth than the moon.
* Water cannot be contaminated by anything.
* Drinking camel urine will make you healthy.
* A fly in your drink can cure you of disease.
* Fever comes from the heat of Hell.
Such errors are expected in documents written over 1,000 years ago, but such errors are not found in the Bible.
Stoner proceeds to present scientific evidence in behalf of Special Creation. For example, he points out that Science had previously taught that Special Creation was absolutely impossible because matter could not be destroyed or created. He then points out that atomic physics has now proved that energy can be turned into matter and matter into energy.
Stoner then considers the order of creation as presented in Genesis 1:1-13. He presents argument after argument from a scientific viewpoint to sustain the order which Genesis chronicles. He then asks, "What chance did Moses have when writing the first chapter of Genesis of getting 13 items all accurate and in satisfactory order?" His calculations conclude it would be 1 chance in 31 times 10 to the 21st power! That's a very big number!
Stoner concludes, "Perhaps God wrote such an account in Genesis so that in these latter days, when Science has greatly developed, we would be able to verify His account and know for certain that God created this planet and the life on it."
Daily Jot: Let us remember Clexit - Bill Wilson -
A year ago, Donald Trump scored a remarkable victory to become President. The media and the Democratic Party were stunned and in denial. Today, we have seen that draining the swamp is a difficult task. Republicans are being exposed in the swamp as they have done virtually nothing in a year from a legislative standpoint and are blocking the agenda that Trump was elected upon. One man could sure mess things up over an eight-year period. It's much harder for one man to fix them, especially when the godless in both parties are resisting doing the right thing. Following is what was published by The Daily Jot a year ago. See if, a year later, this is still true today.
Several analysts characterized Donald Trump's presidential victory as similar to the recent Brexit vote where Great Britain rejected globalism and left the European Union. Perhaps the Trump victory should be characterized as Clexit-the mass exit of the American people from the Clinton brand of morally bankrupt and corrupt politics. According to exit polls, some 80% of evangelical Christians turned out with a strong vote for now President-elect Trump. The Wall Street Journal reports that born-again Christians voted for Trump in numbers larger than they supported the Republican presidential candidates in the past three elections. This proves the power of Christian's in this nation when they move in unity.
Clearly, American Christians sent a message to those who call evil good and good evil: that we are not going to take it anymore. The demeaning of Israel with the elevation of her enemies; the possibility of a Supreme Court bending our laws against life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness; the loss of our jobs and dignity to globalism; unsecured borders; massive crime; race-baiting; bribery; socialist health care; Islamic terrorism; the disrespecting of God in the public square; the destruction of marriage-are the sum of the parts that equaled the whole result of this election. Christians stepped up and voted for the imperfect candidate to save the country from one of the most evil agendas in our history.
Now that we have seen how God can work though us when we are obedient; how prayer and action is honored, may the hope of unity found in Ephesians 4:14-16 be our mantle going forward: "That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supply, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, make increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love."
You see, we have our work cut out for us. We have bought some time. There are only promises of a better, more righteous future for our nation. We must hold accountability-not the type of accountability of judgment and condemnation to our fellow citizens who disagree with us and are blinded by the god of this world, but the accountability of the standard of Christ in whom we believe and are disciples. From Supreme Court appointments to the treatment of Israel to freedom of religion, we must stand in the gap and make the hedge. We must be ever vigilant that our nation is fully advantaged by the mercy our Lord has bestowed upon us. Let us continue to pray, act, repent, and seek the Lord that he may forgive our sin and heal our land. Happy Clexit!
Daily Devotion: Evidence You're a Disciple - By Greg Laurie -
Therefore, by their fruits you will know them. -Matthew 7:20
Are you a disciple of Jesus Christ? Not every Christian necessarily is.
A disciple of Jesus Christ will bring forth spiritual fruit. Jesus said, "By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples" (John 15:8), and "by their fruits you will know them" (Matthew 7:20). If you're a disciple of Jesus Christ, then you will produce spiritual fruit in your life.
In the parable of the sower, Jesus talked about seed falling on different kinds of ground, representing different reactions to the gospel. The final category is those who bring forth fruit: "But these are the ones sown on good ground, those who hear the word, accept it, and bear fruit: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred" (Mark 4:20). Those who last spiritually embrace this truth and produce spiritual fruit.
For example, praising and thanking God is bringing forth spiritual fruit. Hebrews says, "Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name" (13:15). Praising God is producing spiritual fruit.
What we say is also a type of fruit in our lives. Jesus said, "A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks" (Luke 6:45).
Our change in conduct and character is also a type of spiritual fruit. Galatians 5:22 tells us, "The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness."
Can people see these traits in your life? A Christian's life should be characterized by these things. Are you bringing forth spiritual fruit?
FROM THE HEART
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