Today's theme seems to be "deception" since every entry I've written has dealt with this topic. I wonder why that is? Yet, without stopping to consider the spiritual and theological significance of that fact (maybe that will be tomorrow's focus) I'm pleased to present Emily to you today after I just ran into her myself by pure chance online.
Let me begin by saying that I wonder if this is in any way connected to Revelation 13:14-15 that says, "And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived. He was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed."
The phrase "the image of the beast" has always fascinated me especially the part about him being "granted power to give breath to" this image - whatever it is. What does it all mean exactly? I'm not quite sure, but I have a suspicion that perhaps it is refering to some form of technology that will be used for this very purpose.
How do I get to that point? Well, it is commonly assumed that the Mark-of-the-Beast is a literal mark, but that it is also a form of technology that will be used for nefarious purposes by the Antichrist and his New World Order. It is the technology that will allow people everywhere who have it the ability to buy and sell from what we're told. It may not be the most academic leap, but logic tells me that maybe another kind of cutting-edge technology will be used in a similarly evil way to fulfill another purpose. Thus, the creation of the image of the beast.
In any event, a company called Image Metrics describes itself as "Performance-Driven Facial Animation Solutions for the Digital World" The company has its U.S. Headquarters in Los Angeles (ironic that it's in "The City of Angels" given the purpose of this post) and its R&D Facility in the UK. A majority of their clients are big names in the Gaming Industry, which makes sense. However, as you'll see near the end of this video, the fact that "you can rewrite history" (as the Reporter puts it) is sure to make this application popular with non-entertainment entities dare I saw governments and individuals with a specific agenda. Watch for yourself.
Now back to Image Metrics. They specialize in CGI and their latest CG creation is Emily. Have you met Emily? Created through a partnership with USC’s Institute for Creative Technologies (ICT), the team’s primary objective was to create a completely convincing, animated computer-generated face. Here's a still photo for you that proves they've succeeded in that pursuit:
Emily is a truly monumental achievement, recreating every nuance of human facial expression, even though what you’re actually looking at is the face of a digital actor. Using ICT’s special scanning system that can capture facial details down to the individual pore, the face of actress Emily O’Brien was transformed into a digital representation of herself, which could then be entirely machine-manipulated.
A look at the promotional video reveals that you'd be hard pressed to say with certainty whether or not you were watching a live human being or a computer-animated version unless you were privy to that knowledge beforehand The clip is only 2 minutes long so be sure to watch it through to the end because the last 20 second or so is when they press a few magic buttons and give Emily some different visaul effects to illustrate the power of their new technology.
I gotta admit that I had no clue I was watching a CGI representation of an actress. Did you? Now consider for a moment all the sinister applications for this technology once it's in the wrong hands. Think about how easy it would be for anyone and any group or organization (let alone the Antichrist!) to use this technology to their advantage. The possibilities are endless!
It is imperative that we do what we can to protect that old, historical footage that has been embedded in our collective consciousness and that which has made up our national and individual identities. It's who we are.
But what can we do? Can you imagine if a nation like the United States ever decided to use this technology to alter the course of history or, at the very least, change the past? Imagine archives containing video of our Presidents being altered and the historical record being tainted. Like I said, the possibilities are endless and quite disturbing too I might add.
It's also worth noting that this project was unveiled in August of 2008 fitting our current pattern and timeline of just how strange and chaotic this world is becoming prophetically speaking lately.
Today's theme seems to be "deception" since every entry I've written has dealt with this topic. I wonder why that is? Yet, without stopping to consider the spiritual and theological significance of that fact (maybe that will be tomorrow's focus) I'm pleased to present Emily to you today after I just ran into her myself by pure chance online.
Is America ripe for judgment?
Billy Graham quipped many years ago, "If God doesn't judge America He will have to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah!"
Likewise, Thomas Jefferson summed it up when he said, "I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; and that His justice cannot sleep forever."
Here's a sampling of some of the national and international news headlines from various and credible sources (with direct links to the source article) that I came across so far today that all seem to point to to the same thing.
- Feds In Desperate Dragnet To Find And Stop Terrorist October Surprise A coast-to-coast dragnet has been launched partly in response to leads developed in the arrest of one of al-Qaida's "fixers" in the U.S., say FBI officials. They report the bureau is in a race against time to identify Pakistan-trained sleeper cells and disrupt a possible pre-election "October surprise." For the first time since 9/11, counterterrorism field agents have been authorized to spy on young Muslim men and women – including American citizens – who have traveled to Pakistan without any specific evidence of wrongdoing.
- US Steps Up Raids To Thwart al-Qaida 'October Surprise' Plot The Pentagon has ordered that raids on suspected terrorist targets within Pakistan be stepped up to pressurise al-Qaeda leaders and distract them from preparing attacks on American targets elsewhere. "The aim is to disrupt their scope for planning and keep their leaders on the move so that it is more difficult for them to co-ordinate complicated plots," a senior US intelligence official told The Sunday Telegraph.
- More On Financial Terrorism Possibilities U.S. government law enforcement agencies including the SEC, FBI and DOJ are on alert and are believed investigating terror and other related short selling illegal manipulation of the market place. It was reported that between August 26 and September 11, 2001, groups of speculators, including Middle Eastern country investors, some reported connected to terrorist such as Al Qaeda and the Ben Laden family, these groups were believed connected to predicting the demise of certain airline and buildings including the New York Trade Center. Still others were identified by the American Securities and Exchange Commission as Israeli citizens, who sold "short" a list of 38 stocks that could reasonably be expected to fall in value as a result of the pending 911 attacks. According to the reports these speculators operated out of the Toronto, Canada and Frankfurt, Germany, stock exchanges and their profits were specifically stated to be huge.
- Britain Conducts The Largest World War III Exercise In History Fighter jets, infantry troops, destroyers and submarines will converge on Wales next month for one of the largest military exercises of all time. The two-week exercise – codenamed Joint Warrior – is designed to recreate a scenario in which Britain and other sovereign nations go to war against a “state-sponsored terrorist movement” – using a vast array of lethal modern weapons. Taking place between October 6 and October 16, it will provide coordinated training for all three UK Armed Services, plus forces from EIGHT allied nations. The whole of Wales has been designated as a flying area for the exercise, while so-called “managed danger area” ranges at Castlemartin and Manorbier in Pembrokeshire and Pembrey near Llanelli will be used for ground strafing, bombing and missile practice using live ammunition.
- New al-Qaida Threat: Thermobaric Bombs -- Packs Power Like Nuke, But Easier To Build, Blow Up If this analysis of the presence of aluminum powder is confirmed, it means that terrorists with the capability can make such bombs without detection, since all ingredients are off-the-shelf. "Thermobaric bombs … may be emerging as a weapon of choice for terrorists," declared Tom Burky, an explosives expert at the Ohio-based Battelle defense research institute.
- Missouri Governor Outraged By Obama’s Gestapo Use Of Law Enforcement To Threaten, Silence Truth
Missouri Governor Matt Blunt today issued the following statement on news reports that have exposed plans by U.S. Senator Barack Obama to use Missouri law enforcement to threaten and intimidate his critics. “St. Louis County Circuit Attorney Bob McCulloch, St. Louis City Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce, Jefferson County Sheriff Glenn Boyer, and Obama and the leader of his Missouri campaign Senator Claire McCaskill have attached the stench of police state tactics to the Obama-Biden campaign... What Senator Obama and his helpers are doing is scandalous beyond words, the party that claims to be the party of Thomas Jefferson is abusing the justice system and offices of public trust to silence political criticism with threats of prosecution and criminal punishment... This abuse of the law for intimidation insults the most sacred principles and ideals of Jefferson . I can think of nothing more offensive to Jefferson ’s thinking than using the power of the state to deprive Americans of their civil rights. The only conceivable purpose of Messrs. McCulloch, Obama and the others is to frighten people away from expressing themselves, to chill free and open debate, to suppress support and donations to conservative organizations targeted by this anti-civil rights, to strangle criticism of Mr. Obama, to suppress ads about his support of higher taxes, and to choke out criticism on television, radio, the Internet, blogs, e-mail and daily conversation about the election.
Coincidence? Still think this is all "the-sky-is-falling!" chicken little type stuff?
Now more than ever, let's pray for the continued protection of this nation and its people.
Finding Comfort Where Others Find Fear
Yesterday, I wrote about a serious and sobering topic that I think is relevant in the current political climate here in the United States. Where applicable, I provided as much hard evidence as I could so that anyone who read the piece could make their own conclusions based on the cold, hard facts and see that it wasn't simply mere speculation.
It's worth repeating - I hope I'm wrong, and if I am that's fine. God's plan for humanity is still intact, and we're exactly where we're supposed to be on His prophetic timeline. I can't change that - no one can - no matter what I or we think we know. If I'm right, well, then we're a lot closer to seeing the fulfillment of prophecy than even I think we are!
The entire purpose of this online ministry is to alert the world to those things that are taking shape on an international scale that have relevance to prophecy. If I can demonstrate to people that these things are happening exactly the way the God said that they would in the Bible thousands of years ago then maybe - just maybe - I can plant a seed a faith that the Lord will help to grow into a decision for Christ, which we all know leads to forgiveness from our sins as well as eternal salvation. That's my mission here with Look Up Fellowship.
Today, I want to draw our attention to the importance of being mindful of the deception that exists in every facet of society it seems. Satan knows his time is short and he is trying to blind us all to the truth of all that God will allow him to perform upon the world stage in the very near future. Because we know that in the end times deception will rule the day, we'll need to actively look for and then test the truth rather than simply swallowing things hook, line, and sinker.
Case in point, while I thoroughly researched each and every claim I made before publishing that piece yesterday on the very real possibility of Martial Law (so that you can trust the sources and information), I wanted to draw our attention to some examples of blatant deception that a friend pointed out to me today. I will admit to you that in light of everything that was reported yesterday when I first watched this clip I immediately believed that we had just found the coup de gras of this whole tnire thing. I was wrong.
At first glance, the YouTube video is shocking to say the least not to mention the fact that it includes mention of all the things that we know are coming upon our world. However, a closer look reveals a much sinister plot, which I can only conclude is designed to not only divert our attention from the real truth, but to also mock and ridicule those of us who are trying to be responsible citizens and hold our leaders accountable (not to mention those of us who are trying to warn people about the frigthening things that are coming upon this world very soon according to prophecy). See it for yourself.
So, we have a supposed Rep. John Haller (R-PA) presenting a bill titled HR-8791, or the Homeland Terrorism Preparedness Bill. There's only one small problem. There is no bill titled HR-8791 let alone a lawmaker by the name of John Haller - both are fictional! Furthermore, if you look in the lower right-hand side of the video you'll see a symbol where the "C" from "C-SPAN" would normally be. It's a symbol of an onion and it's a dead giveaway that this is the creation of the political satire news organization The Onion.
Ha, Ha! So, I guess the joke's on us gullible Christians who are all just a little too wacky because of our beliefs that we cling too, huh? My first feeling is embarrassment that I initially bought the lie myself, and my second feeling is one of anger. Satan won this battle with me for sure, but I know that the war has already been won (and my soul is untouchable!). Who has the last laugh now?
Anyway, it reminds me of this one time when I was in Radio Sales and I received and email forward about an Amber Alert for a missing young girl. Being the caring Christian that I was and still am, I immediately forwarded the information to EVERYONE IN THE COMPANY NATIONWIDE because my heart broke for her and her family and I thought someone might be able to help. Within minutes I had people emailing me laughing and teasing me because I had just fallen for an online prank! How people can find humor is a kidnapping is beyond me, but I digress.
My point is that Satan likes to make us Christians look like fools. If we're doing our part and aggressively trying to spread the truth about God's Word he will do ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING he can to not only discourage us (by making us feel embarrassed such as in this case), but he'll also try to discredit us with any strangers who might come in contact with us and the message we're trying to send.
The end result? These are the types of things that only breed further mistrust. That's why I encourage people to take these matters to the Lord in prayer and let Him speak to your heart about what's "true" and what's "a lie" because He will answer you. I'm sure there are those out there who will even wonder if any of the things I reported on yesterday can be trusted and taken at face value since today's example was such a convincing counterfeit. Well, I'm here to tell you that you can.
As mentioned, this particular gentleman DOES NOT EXIST and he's an actor who was hired by a political satire organization known as The Onion for the purposes of making a video that they felt was an appropriate commentary on the state of government and political awareness in this country.
Yet, what they failed to realize is what we've known about the devil and his tactics all along. The devil is in the details and his greatest weapon is deception. He is a liar. Plain and simple. Most importantly, every one of his deceptions can be effective, and this is because they all have an element of truth to them (just enough truth to make things believable).
I also believe that the good Lord in all His mercy is able to use these deceptions to get our attention as part of the whole concept of "using bad for good" in this world. Consider that for a moment.
The irony here is that even though this guy was an actor and the bill was a fake, all the things he talked about are an accurate and chilling description of what's to come in the last days.
Thus, Satan tried to use this to make others think that those of us who warn about such things are all nuts, but God used it as a reminder to keep the faith and press on because even unbelievers have these concepts on their mental grid as "potential" realities, otherwise, they wouldn't have thought of them as the scenarios to use for the production of this video.
Time is short. Now is not the time to be discouraged and to stop doing what we've been doing. We need to continue to do our part each and every day. This is simply a little bump in the road.
Let me start by stating openly that I love the Rapture Ready online ministry and thank God that He directed me to it many years ago. That website and community has played a VITAL ROLE in helping me grow in my spiritual walk with the Lord and it is clear to me that God used them to plant seeds in my heart and mind that He would make grow into a full-fledged faith soon after.
So, it is with a bit of a broken heart that I write this today.
I'm not sure what my intention is with this post. I definitely don't want to divide and/or negatively impact the Body of Christ, but I feel I must speak out about something that struck me as quite odd (and disheartening) today.
As you know, yesterday I reported on the Middle East Peace Conference in Venice, Italy and discussed why I felt it was prophetically significant regardless of the actual outcome. The magnitude of what might've been discussed there and possibly agreed to by world leaders, and the potential implications for the Church today is not lost on students of prophecy. Yet, there are some - so-called Christian organizations and communities I might add - who give the impression that this news isn't important. More on that in a moment.
My heart and mind were so heavily burdened with writing that piece that I sat down and wrote it out and didn't stop until I was done. I mention this because it's strange for me to work that way. Typically, I will begin a post and return to it several times over the course of a day, days, and/or week until I feel it is "ready" to be published. I can't explain it, but that's how this has always worked with me for some reason. Not so with yesterday's column. Like I said, it was like I felt as though I needed to report that news now and get it out there ASAP. I still find it strange that myself and the author of Discerning The Times ONLINE! are the only two people that we could find who have reported on that event.
In any case, after posting the story on this blog, I decided to do a brief summary write-up and distribute the link to the post online for others to obtain. I didn't blanket the Internet with it, but instead simply took it to Rapture Ready and figured the large audience there would also spread the word.
You can imagine my surprise when I signed in to their forums today and received the following message from an Administrator:
"Hi, Just a reminder to please read the rules of the board located at the top of the forum. We had to delete your thread on the covenant with many that you started as it was hinting at end times event dates. I also had to delete your links in your signature area. We don't allow advertisements of blogs on the board. Please review the rules and especially notice rule #11 and #15. The rules dealing with blogs, speculating on end times events, etc. thank you."
I just read this note so I'm still a little baffled and upset by it. I mean, this isn't about ME it's about THE LORD and His plan for His people! My only goal was to warn other Brothers and Sisters in Christ to open their eyes and pay attention to things that are going on right under their noses without the spotlight of the mainstream media, and not increase the number of visitors to my site so that I can make money one day off of this online ministry! I recognize that there are people out there who are just the opposite and that they are the reason why these "rules" exist and are in place, but I'm just frustrated over this.
Taking a closer look, you might share in my frustration. The so-called "advertisements of blogs" that this individual referred to consisted of my signature simply reading...
Look Up Fellowship
Red Letter Lessons
Hardly an attempt to call all of one's attention to me and my websites rather than the Lord and the message I was asking them to read and consider.
Taking this person's advice, I also just spent some time looking into the "rules" that they suggested I read for future reference. Now I'm even more confused and upset!
1. "I also had to delete your links in your signature area. We don't allow advertisements of blogs on the board."
From "Signatures, Avatars and Profile Pictures" Section
What are signatures?
'Signatures' contain information that you want to include at the bottom of all your posts. This might include pictures, links to your site(s), quotes, etc.
2. "Please review the rules and especially notice rule #11 and #15. The rules dealing with blogs, speculating on end times events, etc. thank you."
 No End Times Date Setting, Date Speculating, Date Framing, Date Suggesting, Date Alerts, or designating specific Peace Treaties or feasts as the main event of the Rapture or Second Coming. No quoting from others on date setting future events such as the fall of Damascus, Gog/Magog, the Rapture, the Second Coming, the Millennium, Peace Covenants, feasts, etc.... or speculations on who will be the Antichrist, False Prophet, or Gog. This includes linking to sites and books that also speculate and throw out dates based upon Blood Moon, Rash Hashanah, and other events. Do not set Date Alerts and speculations that even hint of date setting. We have already heard the "know the season argument".
 No posts or links from other message boards, forums, or political and religious blogs on this site or posting messages here on other message boards, forums, or political and religious blogs. The mod team alone reserves the right to post links to responsible blogs when important to the discussion of particular topics. Due to the dynamic and uncensored nature of blogs, the mod team does not have the time to monitor, validate, and approve all blogs on the net. No blogs are to be posted unless they are posted by a member of the mod team.
 No promotion of Mid or Post Tribulation, Prewrath, Preterism, or Replacement theology. This board is traditional Pre-Tribulation Rapture, Pre 6 Seals, Pre 70th week, and Pre-Millennial Dispensational in our position of End Times Prophecy. We also believe in a literal 7 year Tribulation period, after the instantaneous Rapture of all regenerated believers in unison, during which God finishes His discipline of Israel and finalizes His judgments on the unbelieving world. We believe that as described in Revelation, that salvation will remain open to people who trust in the Lord Jesus until the Second coming. No promotion of living righteously enough for the rapture, or salvation unattainable after the Rapture. In order to stay within our scriptural position and keep order and peace, all discussions on these topics must follow suit. Our Lord Jesus Christ told us that we won't know the day or hour of His return and to always be ready keeping watch.
So, there you have it. These are 3 of the 31 "rules" that visitors must adhere to in order to simply participate in one of the largest prophecy related communities online. I wonder how anyone could possibly maintain compliance on all 31 and still be considered a regular member in good standing because you could never post anything or engage in any type of meaningful, critical discussion since you're always going to be speculating about one thing or another.
I went back an re-read my column and there was no date-setting whatsoever. Sure, I speculated that something sinister could've happened over the weekend in Venice that we have yet to learn about, but my speculation was no different than MANY OF THE OTHER THREADS in their forums - Israel Destroys Damascus, Then Russia Invades; Is this all about ready to explode?; Are We ? Now Seeing The Black Horse; Is the Antichrist A Jew?; Perhaps Today: The Imminent Coming of Christ (signs?); Bush Speech Prophetic?
And that's just the first page of that forum. Sadly, this important news gets yanked from the site within hours and yet any visitor to the Rapture Ready Home Page will be greeted by the following Google Ads Banner and Advertisement on the right hand side of the screen - God's Warning To The World!, which talks about the non-canonical divine prophecies of Saint Faustina who was a nun who claimed she received prophetic information from Jesus Christ Himself as well as seveal other prophetic "visions" of Mary.
Why the double standard? And why are all these other threads allowed to exist and continue, but the one I posted is deemed too inflammatory or in direct violation of the board's rules? Maybe my frustration shouldn't be directed so much at this particular Administrator, but at Satan and the influence he wielded in this case.
I may have lost this battle - for now - but I have freedom in Christ and He will see to it that this message falls directly into the hands of those He wants it to in His own perfect timing. I can trust that, but will continue to speak out on these news items as they happen because even though I know that that war has already been won I also know that there are many people out there who might perish if they aren't reached in time.
Lord, help me bring glory and honor to You. Please forgive me for my anger and frustration towards the people at Rapture Ready and help me to find the right avenues to use to deliver your life-saving message.
Before I begin this expose I want to note at the outset that I'm fairly certain that many people reading this will not finish the piece through to the end. I'll admit that it does all seem a little "conspiracy-theorist" on the surface and I struggled with whether or not I, as a God-fearing, Bible-believing Christian, should include stuff like this on this site. I can only pray that my personal study and subsequent presentation of this topic will not characterize me as some sort of wacko.
My goal has always been to present the facts and let others decide for themselves. Of course, I'll share my interpretation of the facts and how I see it connecting to Christianity and Bible Prophecy (why I feel this is a relevant topic for discussion here), but I am by no means an expert, a scholar, or a theologian and I hope that me merely writing about this subject matter as a Christian is not some form of heresy or blasphemy. If you disagree and feel that it is I sincerely ask my Brothers and Sisters in Christ to correct me and hold me accountable.
Simply put, I am merely one man who continues to see the many signs of Jesus Christ's soon return all around him with increasing frequency and greater intensity, and I am examining the evidence in a formal way as my attempt to understand what I am seeing in relation to what the Bible tells me will happen in the last days.
Conspiracy theorists have always claimed they have "inside knowledge" that the federal government was preparing for Martial Law in this country citing several political sources as well as various "presidential directives" and "executive orders," and they've even referenced what they claim are going to be "prison camps" (or "safe zones") in our very near future.
Whatever your stance is on such claims, I've always taken them with a grain of salt - as do most people - even despite what I know is going to transpire based on what Biblical prophecy tells us. However, today while doing some research into this financial crisis that dominates the headlines I've come across some questionable material that is making me rethink my position on the subject for a moment.
For instance, Exhibit A is a video excerpt of an interview with Jerome Corsi. If you're not familiar with Mr. Corsi you're missing out because he is one of the world's best investigative reporters and he actually backs up each and every claim he makes with some hard, undeniable evidence.
Many paint him as a "conservative" although I would argue (as we'll see in a moment) that he's non-partisan despite being famous for his involvement in the 2004 presidential campaign as the co-author to the book Unfit For Command, which was the expose on John Kerry involving the Swift Boat Veterans and he's gained similar acclaim for his expose on Barack Obama in his book The Obama Nation. In August 2006 he published Minutemen: The Battle to Secure America's Borders with Minutemen founder Jim Gilchrist. This book criticizes President George W. Bush's border protection policies, accusing him of furthering plans to create a North American Union. In March 2008 Corsi reported in WorldNetDaily that a "Muslim terrorist group with ties to criminal drug networks and al-Qaida" has given "strong support" to John McCain. In addition, Corsi has even called for the impeachment of Bush, and endorsed Constitution Party presidential candidate Chuck Baldwin.
So, needless to say, he's hardly in the pocket of the Republicans or the Bush administration.
Today, I stumbled upon this interview from 2007 that he gave to C-SPAN. It's about 10 minutes in length and worth every bit of your time, but the bottom line is this - he wanted to alert the public to a presidential directive enacted by President Bush in 2007 would allow for the institution of Martial Law due to an economic crisis. That's right!
The directive gives the President extremely broad - dare I say dictatorial - powers to determine what classifies as a "national emergency" and it allows the federal government to take control over every aspect of the functioning society.
The President can declare a national emergency, and take up all national and essential functions for continuity of the government including directing all federal, state, local, territorial, and tribal governments as well as private sector organizations, which would continuing functioning under the President's directive.
Don't think Martial Law could ever happen here? Think again. Here's a quick summary of all the instances - 7 in total (5 within the last 100 years; 1 only 3 years ago) - of Martial Law being enforced within the borders of the continental United States:
1. During the War of 1812, General Andrew Jackson imposed martial law within his encampment at New Orleans, which he had recently liberated. Martial law was also imposed in a four mile radius around the camp. When word came of the end of the war, Jackson maintained martial law, contending that he had not gotten official word of the peace. A judge demanded habeas corpus for a man arrested for sedition. Rather than comply with the writ, Jackson had the judge arrested. After the civil authority was restored, the judge fined Jackson $1000, which he paid, and for which the Congress later reimbursed Jackson.
2. In 1892, at Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, rebellious mine workers blew up a mill and shot at strike-breaking workers. The explosion leveled a four-story building and killed one person. Mine owners asked the governor to declare martial law, which he did. At the same time, a request was made for federal troops to back guardsmen. Over 600 people were arrested. The list was whittled down to two dozen ring leaders who were tried in civil court. While in prison, the mine workers formed a new union, the Western Federation of Miners.
3. In 1914, imposition of martial law climaxed the so-called Coal Field Wars in Colorado. Dating back decades, the conflicts came to a head in Ludlow in 1913. The Colorado National Guard was called in to quell the strikers. For a time, the peace was kept, but it is reported that the make-up of the Guard stationed at the mines began to shift from impartial normal troops to companies of loyal mine guards. Clashes increased and the proclamation of martial law was made by the governor. President Wilson sent in federal troops, eventually ending the violence.
4. In 1934, California Governor Frank Merriam placed the docks of San Francisco under martial law, citing "riots and tumult" resulting from a dock worker's strike. The Governor threatened to place the entire city under martial law. The National Guard was called in to open the docks, and a city-wide institution of martial law was averted when goods began to flow. The guardsmen were empowered to make arrests and to then try detainees or turn them over to the civil courts.
5. Martial law and San Francisco were no strangers - following the earthquake of 1906, the troops stationed in the Presidio were pressed into service. Guards were posted throughout the city, and all dynamite was confiscated. The dynamite was used to destroy buildings in the path of fires, to prevent the fires from spreading. Troops were ordered to shoot looters. Though there was never an official declaration of martial law, the event is often cited as such. However, at all times it appears the troops took their orders indirectly from the civil authority.
6. Though not a state at the time, Hawaii was placed under martial law in 1941, following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Many of the residents of Hawaii were, and are, of Asian descent, and the loyalty of these people was called into question. After the war, the federal judge for the islands condemned the conduct of martial law, saying, "Gov. Poindexter declared lawfully martial law but the Army went beyond the governor and set up that which was lawful only in conquered enemy territory namely, military government which is not bound by the Constitution. And they ... threw the Constitution into the discard and set up a military dictatorship."
7. On 8/26/2005, in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans was placed under martial law after widespread flooding rendered civil authority ineffective. The state of Louisiana does not have an actual legal construct called "martial law," but instead something quite like it: a state of public health emergency. The state of emergency allowed the governor can suspend laws, order evacuations, and limit the sales of items such as alcohol and firearms. The governor's order limited the state of emergency, to end on 9/25/2005, "unless terminated sooner."
Thus, there is not only a precedent in this country for this to occur, but also a legal document in place that would allow for it to happen again.
However, the plot thickens!
There are also reports that beginning in October (this Wednesday, October 1, 2008 to be exact), the Army plans to station an active unit inside the United States for the first time to serve as an on-call federal response in times of emergency. Yes, you read that correctly. Read the press release in full from The Army Times here at this link.
From the article:
"The 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team has spent 35 of the last 60 months in Iraq patrolling in full battle rattle, helping restore essential services and escorting supply convoys. Now they’re training for the same mission — with a twist — at home. Beginning Oct. 1 for 12 months, the 1st BCT will be under the day-to-day control of U.S. Army North, the Army service component of Northern Command, as an on-call federal response force for natural or manmade emergencies and disasters, including terrorist attacks. After 1st BCT finishes its dwell-time mission, expectations are that another, as yet unnamed, active-duty brigade will take over and that the mission will be a permanent one."
The official party line is that the threat of terrorism is prompting this unprecedented move, but others suggest that it is the country's "deepening economic crisis" and the growing "social chasm separating the country's working people from the obscenely wealthy financial elite" that is putting the willies up Washington.
Of course, this is all very fascinating given the other national and international reports of terrorists wanting to kick us when we're down. In other words, they know that our attention is squarely on the economy and they recognize that this is probably a good opportunity to strike our country again by carrying out an attack that would dwarf 9/11. In fact, chatter indicates that they've even targeted October 7, 2008 as the day make their plans a reality as evidenced by the above link.
As if that weren't enough to get your heart racing and your blood boiling, here's a YouTube video clip of House Representative Michael Burgess from Texas speaking on the bailout proceedings, how the Democrats are backing Bush, and how Nancy Pelosi declared Martial Law! I wouldn't believe it for myself unless I saw this and heard it with my own ears. This speech was given last night, and yet I can't find anything about this in the mainstream news. Strange?
In fair and balanced reporting, however, I must concede that this is a mere coincidence perhaps and simply a case of the types of language and procedures that are used in this political arena that we are not privy to. I say this because a similar thing happened in 2006, "The Leadership apparently intends to use a process known as 'martial law' to allow these bills to be brought to the floor very shortly after negotiations are completed, with the result that Members of the House are likely to have virtually no time to examine and consider the details of the legislation before they will be required to vote on it." Apparently, the House leadership can invoke "Congressional Martial Law," which is to say that they can force members to vote on key bills WITHOUT full knowledge of what they are voting on. In effect, this prevents the lawmakers, citizens, and media from fully reviewing a proposal and from knowing exactly what provisions are included in a proposal that could potentially be approved.
Sure, this might not be the type of martial law that results in tanks down Main Street, but it still represents an erosion of the democratic process, and that in and of itself should set off bells and whistles that something is not right here.
There are some additional interesting common threads here that I cannot deny seem to make this concern all a little more plausible. One such example is when John McCain spoke to the National Urban League in early August 2008, and an audience member asked him how he planned to reduce urban crime. His response? He praised Rudy Giuliani's efforts as Mayor of New York City before invoking the military's tactics in Iraq as the model for crime-fighting:
MCCAIN: "And some of those tactics - you mention the war in Iraq - are like that we use in the military. You go into neighborhoods, you clamp down, you provide a secure environment for the people that live there, and you make sure that the known criminals are kept under control. And you provide them with a stable environment and then they cooperate with law enforcement, etc, etc." You can listen to the audio here.
Even I have to admit that this all seems rather suspect. I mean, the timing of all these major events being so close together seems strange. Does the government know something that we don't know? Are they expecting an attack and/or Martial Law? Isn't this what the National Guard is supposed to do instead of the U.S. Army? On the surface, this is all absolutely absurd. Have there been any riots lately? Any civil unrest? ANYTHING that would warrant the training and deployment of an Active Duty Infantry Unit on U.S. soil?
When you combine these facts with all the other prophetically-relevant news headlines from around the world today (i.e. extreme weather; Russia's actions; Iran-Israel conflict; world economy; CERN; increased paranormal/supernatural activity in the form of "ghosts" and "aliens/UFO's"; recent peace conference in Venice; etc.) how can we collectively turn a blind eye to what my be on our doorstep?
I haven't put on my tin foil hat just yet, but my tin foil antenna is certainly up and receiving transmissions. Keep your eyes and ears open and do your own investigative reporting if you don't want to take my word for it (Google makes that quite easy these days). Examine the evidence for yourself and use your God-given brain to make your own conclusions. At the very least, you have just been given a recipe for success during another vital presidential election season.
Stay alert. Keep looking up.
***UPDATE 12/19/08: IMF Warns Of Economic Riots, Police Ready For Civil Unrest Paulson discussed worst-case scenario at bailout meeting – declare Martial Law***
Finding Comfort Where Others Find Fear
Did the unthinkable happen right under our noses and with barely a mention of it from the international press? Perhaps. The more likely scenario is that we are seeing the final chess pieces being moved into position for what Satan thinks will be a spiritual checkmate.
In what could be the biggest prophetically relevant story to come out in recent days (amazing considering everything else that's going on in this world!), Discerning The Time ONLINE! is reporting that Italy held a Middle East peace conference in Venice from September 22-September 27!
That headline alone should set off bells and whistles in every student of prophecy given what God and the Bible has to say about the antichrist's rise to power, but check out some of the terminology being used in the news article and then compare that to what Scripture says - truly remarkable!
QUOTE: "'Let's make peace in the Middle East. Let's rebuild hope' is the slogan of the peace conference to be held in Venice."
BIBLE: "And in his place shall arise a vile person, to whom they will not give the honor of royalty; but he shall come in peaceably, and seize the kingdom by intrigue. With the force of a flood they shall be swept away from before him and be broken, and also the prince of the covenant. And after the league is made with him he shall act deceitfully, for he shall come up and become strong with a small number of people. He shall enter peaceably, even into the richest places of the province; and he shall do what his fathers have not done, nor his forefathers: he shall disperse among them the plunder, spoil, and riches; and he shall devise his plans against the strongholds, but only for a time." Daniel 11:21-24
Daniel prophesied of the Antichrist that there "shall arise a vile person, to whom they will not give the honor of royalty; but he shall come in peaceably, and seize the kingdom by intrigue" (Daniel 11:21). He is described here as a "vile person" because God knows he is, but it would seem that he is going to be quite a popular leader as far as the peoples of the world are concerned.
Exactly what it means about not giving him the honor of royalty remains to be seen, but in today's world royalty and monarchy grow increasingly unpopular. So perhaps it just means he is confirmed as a leader without giving him an appellation of royalty, such as king, but that he rules as an absolute ruler in the style of ancient kings. It appears he doesn't use violence to achieve his initial aims, and therefore would probably present himself as a promoter of international peace. But whatever his platform, he achieves his aims through intrigue.
The King James Version of the Bible uses the term "flatteries" in the place of "intrigue." This is also appropriate as it shows that he uses his considerable charm to flatter and weasel his way into power.
In the early stages of the Antichrist's regime, everything will appear to be going well. He'll be trying to make everybody happy, and will somehow manage to bring peace to many parts of the world. He will seem to be the smartest man who ever lived, with the greatest power and the greatest wisdom, able to solve intractable problems, stop all wars, and put everybody to work building peace.
"Peace and safety" will be a slogan of his government and the general populace. "Everything's going to be peaceful and safe now. No more wars. Everything's going to be secure. Everybody's going to have plenty"(1 Thessalonians 5:3). And despite some setbacks and troubles, initially it will seem to be true!
QUOTE: "The aim of the conference is to strengthen and extend the engagement of European authorities in promoting the success of the peace negotiations.
BIBLE: "And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate." Daniel 9:27
Oh yeah, it gets even more surreal than that! You know how the Bible talks about the "ten kings" of Revelation 17 in the end times? Well, a casual look into news about this conference online brought me to some rather fascinating information about the history of Venice itself, which leads me to consider that perhaps this location wasn't chosen by accident for this particular summit. In other words, as with all things, there's a spiritual connection. Please continue reading the next section and make your own final judgment.
The "Council of Ten" was a Venetian political organization in the 14th century. Alongside the Great Council and Senate stood the Council of Ten. In 1310 Baiamonte Tiepolo and other nobles had sought to seize power from the dominant faction in the Great Council. It was after the suppression of this conspiracy that the Great Council created the Council of Ten, armed with exceptional powers. To counter any attempts at sole personal rule, the Council of Ten was established to police the patrician order and defend the existing regime.
The Council of Ten, or simply the Ten, was, from 1310 to 1797, one of the major governing bodies of the Republic of Venice. Although its actions were often secretive, it was generally considered to be fair and effective by the citizens of the Republic. It was intended as a temporary response to the revolt led by Bajamonte Tiepolo against the Doge, and was given emergency powers to deal with the resulting unrest. Although originally established for a period of two months, its authority was continuously renewed, until it became a permanent body in 1334.
The Council was formally composed of ten members, elected for one-year terms by the Great Council. Members of the Council could not be elected for two successive terms, nor could two members from the same family be elected simultaneously. Leadership of the Council was vested in three Capi, who were elected from among the ten members for one-month terms, and the Council was formally tasked with maintaining the security of the Republic and preserving the government from overthrow or corruption, however, its small size and ability to rapidly make decisions led to more mundane business being referred to it, and by 1457 it was enjoying almost unlimited authority over all governmental affairs.
Did you catch that? Does anyone else find all of this history of the Council of Ten - specifically their structure, term limits, and power - interesting terminology and facts in relation to Christianity, the Bible, and prophecy?
Perhaps it's simply a case of me wanting to find a connection so I encourage you to make your own conclusions based on the evidence. Yet, we all know that Satan will try to mimic (as a form of mockery) anything to do with God and His plan for humanity, with specific attention given to the Holy Trinity and the Second Coming.
With that in mind, I am very intrigued by the fact that the "leadership of the Council was vested in three Capi" (a counterfeit Holy Trinity?), that they "were elected from among ten members" (a reference to the future Ten Kings of Revelation 17?) "for one-month terms" (which is eerily close to Scripture's description of "And he shall confirm the covenant with the many for one week" in Daniel), and "it was enjoying almost unlimited authority over all governmental affairs" (a reference to the revived Roman empire that will function as the one-world government in the last days?).
As if that weren't enough to get your heart racing on this subject consider the following coup de gras.
I also found out about something called the Venice Declaration from back in 1980. This was another worldwide diplomatic effort to generate peace in the Middle East. One of its stated goals included the following: "On the bases thus set out, the time has come to promote the recognition and implementation of the two principles universally accepted by the international community : the right to existence and to security of all states in the region, including Israel, and justice for all the peoples, which implies the recognition of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people."
Could this past week's peace conference be the one we've been watching for? Could it be the one which the future antichrist confirmed, since the existing framework for peace in the Middle East was already in place from a 1980 agreement? Did he confirm a covenant with the many!?!
Stay tuned, as I try to find some additional information on the outcome of this conference and report on the potential implications and ramifications for all of us Believers in Christ.
A look back at the news stories/commentaries from this past week that have prophetic implications...
- Coming Soon: One World Currency
- The Green Bible?
- More One-World Thinking: European Commission Calls for "Universal" Broadband
- Do You Know What The Bible Says About Goliath-Like Giants In The End Times?
- Mobile Biometrics: The Future of Mobile Law Enforcement
- Once Again, The Wolf Is At The Door
- YouTube: The War On God In America
- Russia May Launch Nuclear Cooperation With Venezuela: Putin
Some of you may be wondering why I've given so much time here to the current financial woes of the United States and its cascading effect on the world.
Obviously, I personally believe that this is prophetically significant for many reasons. We may not know the exact circumstances as to how all the things foretold in the Bible will come about. However, it's not that hard to look at the facts and make some educated guesses.
In any event, yesterday's post about how we were warned well in advance that the economy was on the verge of chaos and collapse was included here to sort of resonate with this whole study of prophecy.
The point is this - often times there are MANY signs all around us that precede the actual event that they're alluding to; we simply refuse to acknowledge them for what they are.
I'm praying that if you haven't given this whole God, Jesus, Bible, Christianity and prophecy thing much thought that perhaps now you will. The signs are everywhere my friends! In a sense, you could call these the signs to salvation if they'll lead us to a belief in Jesus Christ.
Let's not make the same mistake we made when we were warned about the impending doom concerning our economy!
If you haven't already, get yourselves right with our Lord and Savior and focus on what's truly important from this point forward.
And by all means, keep looking up!
Here's a quick follow-up to the recent posts documenting the worldwide chatter concerning the potential move to a one-world currency in an attempt to cure the global financial crisis.
This is a video compilation of all the warning signs that surrounded us that we ignored - clearly the signs were all around us. It was posted back in March 2008 and is looking rather prescient at the moment.
For everyone who thought Ron Paul was a little nutty with many of the things he talked about during the primaries it's clear that he was the only one who made any sense because he was willing to tell us the truth and tell it like it is.
With Monday morning looming as the deadline for our lawmakers to pass some sort of resolution before the sky falls and things get even worse I can't help but to continue to think that all of this is going exactly as planned and described in the Bible.
I mean, a one-world government with a one-world currency and one-world religion needs to start sometime, right? Perhaps we're witnessing this transformation before our very eyes.
The question is whether or not we will recognize all the signs around us and begin looking up.
This entire online ministry was created with the sole purpose of not only sharing the Gospel, but to also alert the world to the many prophetic signs that are all around us pointing to the imminent unfolding of what the Bible calls the last days for mankind.
In fact, the very name of this ministry was derived by Jesus' own instruction to our generation when He said, "And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draws near" Luke 21:28.
Friends, things are beginning to unfold at an alarming rate and it seems as though not a single day goes by anymore without something major happening to tell us where we are on God's prophetic timeline. As documented many times, the key to all of this is to closely watch the tiny state of Israel since they are God's prophetic timepiece.
That being said, let's take a quick look at the following list of news headlines from the past few weeks to tell us just how close we are courtesy of Lamb & Lion Ministries...
Life as we know it is about to radically change.
As you and I watch world events unfold, especially during this past week, end-time prophetic scenarios now appear ready to begin. Scriptures often tie a prophesied future event with something that will happen directly to the Jews, and all instances of these world events will directly affect Israel.
Events and outcomes:
1. The United States is sadly on the brink of bankruptcy and a second Great Depression. With the loss of income comes the loss of political and military power. Because of that and depending on the outcome of the current presidential election, Israel would lose the United States as an ally and protector. Israel will be on its own.
2. A U.S. financial meltdown would throw much of the world into financial suffering, resulting in world-wide poverty and famine. Countries all over the world already have hurriedly begun calling for a change from the dollar to a one-world currency and an overall world organization to manage it.
3. Israel is in a disarrayed leadership vacuum. The front-runner for Prime Minister wishes upon taking power to immediately give over a lot of land to their enemies, making Israel almost indefensible.
4. Syria, Lebanon, Gaza and other terror-supporting nations have rearmed and are ready to invade Israel. Syria's already moving troops along its border.
5. Russia roared out of the background to consolidate their interests from Moscow through Georgia and all the way into Syrian ports. They are reaching for the Middle East oil fields and Israel. Then we also read about Russia sending warships on military exercise in America's 'backyard' as New Cold War intensifies.
6. Iran and Russia have solidified their political ties. Iran is only months away from being nuclear-armed, ready to act on their promises of annihilating Israel.
All these world events will force Israel to act in the upcoming months. Israel will be forced either into a Psalm 83 scenario where they are under siege and forced to use maximum force against their surrounding neighbors. Or, Iran will follow through on its threats and with the help of Russia fulfill the Ezekiel 38-39 scenario of the Gog-Magog invasion. It will probably be both, one closely after another.
Unless God intervenes and delays what is prophetically inevitable, the world scene appears to be ready for the 7-year Tribulation; a time Jesus said will be "such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever shall." In fact, Jesus said it will be so terrible that if it were not stopped at the end of 7 years, it would result in the destruction of all life (Matthew 24:21-22).
For the believer in Christ, this life change may mean some suffering in the short term, but believers will be spared God's wrath and the Tribulation by first being taken up to be with Jesus in heaven (John 14:1-4; Romans 5:9; 1 Corinthians 15:51-52; 1 Thessalonians 1:10; 5:9).
Because the Rapture of the Church looks so close, we're releasing the text version (below) of a video we're working on titled "Jesus Came. What's Next?" It is Lamb & Lion's message to those left behind. I encourage you not only to forward this e-newsletter and download as many copies as possible to give out to those you know haven't accepted Jesus as Savior, but also to use it as a "left behind" message using You've Been Left Behind.
Our waiting is almost over. Jesus is coming back to reign!
To that report I would like to conclude with the following - LOOK UP!!!
I received this email from Huck PAC yesterday on the current financial mess and felt it was worth sharing in its entirity. Makes me remember why I supported Mike Huckabee for President a few months back...
Dear Huck PAC Family,
I ask 2 things of you right now:
First, read this email completely. I’m including my thoughts on the “bailout bill,” and I believe you will find them of interest. Second, if you agree with what I have to say, support my efforts at Huck PAC so we’ll continue to have a strong voice and we’ll have the capacity to support conservative candidates all across the nation who will stand and fight for our conservative principles…especially in times of crisis like we are facing as a nation today.
Frankly, I’m disappointed and disgusted with my own Republican party as I watch them attempt to strong-arm a bailout of some of America’s biggest corporations by asking the taxpayers to suck up the staggering results of the hubris, greed, and arrogance of those who sought to make a quick buck by throwing the dice. They lost, but want the rest of us to cover their bets so they won’t be effected in their lavish lifestyles as they figure out how to spend their tens of millions and in some cases, hundreds of millions in bonuses and compensation which was their reward for not only sinking their companies, but basically doing the same to the entire American economy.
It’s especially disconcerting to see the very people who pilloried me during the Presidential campaign for being a “populist” and not “understanding Wall Street” to now line up like thirsty dogs at the Washington, D. C. water dish, otherwise known as Congress, and plead for help. I thought these guys were the smartest people in America! I thought that taxpayers like you and I were similar to the people at the U. N. who have no translator speaking into their headset - that we just needed to trust those that I called the power bunch in the “Wall Street to Washington axis of power.”
The idea of a government bailout in which we’d entrust $700 billion to one man without Congressional oversight or accountability is absurd. My party or not, that is insanity and I believe unconstitutional.
Will there be far-reaching consequences without some intervention? Probably, but we honestly don’t know since we’ve really never seen this level of greed and stupidity all rolled into one massive move. But may I suggest that letting “Uncle Sugar” step in and bail out the billionaires who made the mess will be far worse and will start a long line of companies and individuals who will demand the same of the government - which last time I checked means that they will be demanding it out of YOU and ME. This is not money that Congress is risking from THEIR pockets or future, but ours. Many if not most of us have already experienced lost value on our homes, retirement accounts, and pensions. Now they’d like for us to assume some further risks so they won’t have to.
What happened to the “free market” idea? Is that only our view when we WIN and when we LOSE, we ask the government to come in and take away the pain? If you are a small business owner, is this the way it works at your place? When you have a bad month, a bad year, or face having to close, can you go up to Congress and get them to write YOU a fat check to take away your risk?
Some of what contributed to this disaster is too much government in the form of Sarbanes/Oxley. Some is due to the tax structure that created the hunger for companies to “game” the system. Some is the common sense that was ignored like loaning money to people who can’t pay it back.
Wall Street has become Las Vegas east, but at least in Vegas, people KNOW they are gambling and they don’t expect the government to cover their losses at the tables. In Wall Street, they do. And the American taxpayer burdens the responsibility.
If Congress wants to do something, here are some suggestions:
1. Eliminate ALL capital gains taxes and taxes on savings and dividends right now. Free up the capital and encourage investment. This is the kind of economic stimulus the Fair Tax would bring and if Congress is going to lose money, let them lose it with lower taxes, not with public dollar bailouts of private market mistakes.
2. Repeal Sarbanes/Oxley. It has failed. It was supposed to prevent this. It didn’t. Kill it.
3. Demand that the executives who steered their ships into the ground be forced to pay back the losses of their companies. Of course, they can’t, so let them work and give back to the government and they can live like the people they put on the streets or kept there. It makes no sense to put them in jail - that’s just more they will cost you and me. I’d rather them go out and earn money - just not get to keep so much of it this time. I’m not talking about limiting CEO salaries - just those of the people who now are up in Washington begging for help because they ruined their companies.
Attempts by Democrats and Republicans to blame each other is nonsense. They are both guilty and ought to own up and admit it. They all lived off big campaign contributions and the swill of the lobbyists who strong armed them into permission to steal. Enough of blame. Fix it!
This would be a start. If we don’t hold these guys responsible, we are all finished.
Your support today will send a strong message to our Party Leadership in Washington that we are fed up with “business as usual!” And it will give us the resources to support strong conservative candidates who are campaigning hard for election this November.
Those folk who share our beliefs and who will fight…not bail…on our principles. Please make an immediate contribution of $25, $50, $75, $100 or more to help make certain that the “business as usual” of Washington politics stops in January.
Thank you for your continued support and God Bless.
In the last post we documented the abhorrent practice of religious persecution going on in many parts of the world. That got me thinking that there may be some people out there who wonder to themselves, "If the Gospel is prevented from being preached then how can those who have never heard it be saved?"
It's a fantastic question and I believe that the answer to this question is equally amazing for us to think about and consider.
In many countries, the Gospel can't be shared freely. Repressive governments and religions stop Christians from telling others about Jesus. However, God is mightier than oppression. Where human messengers can't carry the good news, the Lord is revealing Himself to those whose hearts are open.
First, 1 Timothy 2 says God wants everyone to come to a saving knowledge of Him. Romans 1 shows He is holy and just, but He can't overlook man's sinful condition, which renders all guilty and without excuse. He will not admit people into heaven unless they've acknowledged their need for a Savior.
But, our Father is also fair and merciful.
He makes His presence known to every person so each one may choose to recognize His sovereignty. The Lord does this by revealing Himself to all mankind in 2 ways: through conscience and creation.
First, He has imbedded His basic moral guidelines in the human conscience. In other words, at some point in life, every sane person has an innate sense that certain actions are right and others are wrong.
Second, the Creator displays His power and divine nature through what He has made. The complexity, variety, order, and beauty of the world all point to an intelligent Designer.
Surely, we can't pinpoint every method the Lord uses to reveal Himself. Yet, we can be sure nothing will stop Him from reaching out to people who follow conscience and creation to the logical conclusion… the existence of a loving, sovereign God.
What's the first thing that comes to mind when you think of religious persecution? Contrary to popular belief, even in the 21st century people across the globe are continually persecuted (often times in such horrible ways that can even result in death!) for their religious beliefs.
Darfur. China. Typically, we tend to think of oppressive countries like those as being the worst when it comes to violating basic human rights. We can now add India to that list too. As reported in a recent column by Chuck Colson, the largest democracy in the world is seeing some of the most horrific persecution of Christians is taking place in its state of Orissa, India.
The article goes on to document a truly grim situation...
"On August 23, a Hindu nationalist known as 'Guruji' was shot to death along with four of his followers. While Guruji had many enemies and was mostly likely killed by Maoist guerillas, a local newspaper blamed Christians for his death. The result was a wave of anti-Christian violence that has killed at least 25 people, burned at least 50 churches, and destroyed at least 4,000 Christian homes.
Even more shocking than these numbers is the savagery of the attacks. There are reliable reports of priests being burned alive and nuns being raped. Hindu fanatics were caught trying to poison the water supply at a camp set up for Christians fleeing the violence.
A special target of the Hindu nationalists are former Hindus, especially Dalits, who have converted to Christianity. As Indian journalist Anjalee Lewis has written, the violence against Christians is 'linked to the empowerment of the Dalits and tribals.'
Conversion and education has provided them with 'dignity' and 'freedom from oppressive traditions of caste-based discrimination and slavery.' This, in turn, has prompted a violent response from 'dominant castes, who could no longer rely upon them for cheap farm labor or bonded labor.' The result, according to Archbishop Raphael Cheenath, is a campaign 'to eliminate Christians from Orissa.'"
If you’re wondering where the Indian government is in all this, the answer is, on the sidelines - at best. Thus, the only hope for Christians in Orissa and other parts of India is pressure from overseas. At the very least, you need to write or call your Congressman or Senators to alert them to what’s going on in India. But most of all, pray for our persecuted Brothers and Sisters in Christ. Get your church involved in the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church, which comes up on November 9.
Sadly, religious persecution isn't reserved for some distant and far away land, but it is also being practiced here in the United States. So much for freedom of religion.
Recent headlines report that 5 Virginia state police chaplains have lost their jobs because they were censored from praying publicly “in Jesus’ name.” How absurd is that?
Virginia state police Col. W. Steven Flaherty created and then enforced a strict "non-sectarian" prayer policy at all public gatherings. The policy forbids chaplains from praying “in Jesus’ name.” The policy was adopted to keep from offending anyone. The 5 chaplains who refused to deny Jesus resigned rather than violate their conscience by watering down their prayers.
Their chaplains. Praying in Jesus' name is part of their job description and way of life. Is anyone else simply mind-boggled by the absurdity of the world today? Up is down, black is white, and right seems to be left. Deception rules the day!
Still, despite the beginning signs that religious persecution is beginning to take root in this country, compared to other countries we have it good. And yet our Bibles, which contain the living and life-changing Word of God, sit on a bookshelf collecting dust.
In many countries, the Gospel can't be shared freely. As I've just documented, repressive governments and religions stop Christians from telling others about Jesus.
It's frightening to think that this is only the tip of the iceberg since Jesus warned us that things would get much worse in the end times. In fact, during the Tribulation all the saints who proclaim faith in Jesus Christ (those who reject worshipping the antichrist) will be hunted down and murdered - beheaded actually.
Please pray for our persecuted brethren - everywhere.
US Report: Rise In Violence Against Messianic Jews And Christians
I just love reading news stories like this one today. Ok, not really, but I'm sure many of you will be shocked to learn that the government is using our tax dollars on experiments and projects that should be left to the movies let alone the far corners of our imaginations.
I guess it's not enough for them to simply use our hard-earned money to bail out those companies and individuals that made irresponsible economic decisions, but I digress.
Yet, here were are reading about DARPA (a super-secret research agency of the U.S. Department of Defense that often dabbles in far-out technologies) at it again. This time they're soliciting innovative research proposals in the area of Casimir Effect Enhancement.
Traveling through wormholes, time machines and hovering landspeeders are the stuff of science fiction novels. Nevertheless, scientists have suggested that the quantum mechanics of something called the Casimir Effect can be used to produce a locally mass-negative region of space-time, a phenomenon that theoretically could be used to stabilize a wormhole to allow faster than light travel.
In other words, for many years the Casimir Effect was little more than a theoretical curiosity. With the advances in micro- and nanotechnology and the fact that the Casimir force affects nanoscale devices such as NEMS, research in detecting and manipulating this mysterious force has generated substantial interest.
Yes, you read all of that correctly. Science fiction is quickly becoming science fact. What's amazing to me is how all of this research is being done and all this money is being spent right under our noses and we barely acknowledge any of it.
I'm sure there are many people who will just shrug their shoulders and wonder what all the fuss is about. Even so, you have to wonder about such things. I mean, just because we can think of doing something doesn't mean we should actually attempt it.
Who knows what all of this research and eventual technology could lead to. Sure, the scientists working on these projects (as well as those who want to secure more funding) will try to tell us that their work could lead to some of the greatest scientific brekathroughs in history and that they may even lead to cures for major diseases.
However, we all know that there are always two sides to every coin and before we're so quick to throw the weight of our full support (not to mention our wallets) behind such things we better be damn sure we're not investing our future in the devil and opening his pandora's box in the process.
Nanotechnology, The Mysterious Casimir Force, And Interstellar Spaceships
The Lord never ceases to amaze me!
I spent my lunch break writing the previous post on the current state of the national economy, it's potential effect on the world economy, and why I believe this is prophetically significant as being a precursor to a one-world currency.
Right on cue, as I was browsing today's news headlines before heading back to work I come across a WorldNetDaily piece titled, "The Coming 1-World Currency: Some Set 2010 As Date For Monetary Union" by Jerome Corsi!
Apparently, he reports that last week finance chiefs of 5 of the 6-member, oil-rich Gulf Cooperation Council approved a proposal to create a monetary union as a move toward adopting a single currency.
The 6 Islamic states constituting the Gulf Cooperation Council are Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Oman pulled out of the agreement last year.
Five states in the compact have agreed to set 2010 as the target date for the creation of a monetary union and the adoption of common currency.
The emergence of an Islamic single currency among these oil-rich Middle Eastern countries marks a significant step in the emerging worldwide movement to abandon national currencies in favor of regional currencies, along the model where the EU states have abandoned their national currencies in favor of the European Central Bank and the euro.
Well, there you have it. Anyone else get the feeling as if God is trying to make sure He gets our attention before it's too late?
Just more proof (as if we needed any!) of where we are on the prophetic timeline.
Is anyone else as frustrated and angry as I am? Could this be the worst financial environment that this nation has faced since the Great Depression?
Typically, I'm a positive guy who tends to see the silver-lining in anything and everything. However, last week's fiasco on Wall Street as well as the recent suggestions and actions by the federal government have me seeing red today - and I don't mean just my hair when I look into the mirror.
As the value of the U.S. dollar continues to decline and markets continue to collapse, it's not far fetched to think that this current crisis could trigger a worldwide economic disaster. Something needed to be done. I get that. To do nothing would've been worse than simply sitting on your hands and doing nothing.
While it's clear that the Bush administration feared that letting the big Wall Street institutions fail could destroy the economy and prove more costly than rescuing them I don't believe that rescuing them was the answer.
This mentality that people can do whatever they please (live life and/or run a business irresponsibly) without having to suffer the consequences of such decisions and actions is becoming tiresome especially to this small business owner and sole income provider. The government only reinforces that mentality when they go out of their way to support and help such people/companies. So much for one's ideology.
So, in a single week we watched capitalists turn into socialists.
As The Buffalo News' David Robinson eloquently stated in a recent column, "We have to realize that the party is coming to an end. The era of easy credit is over. The age of paying back what you borrow is beginning. Deregulation is on the outs. A new age of regulation on the way in.. The laissez-faire approach to markets is history. The federal government is moving into the financial markets in an unprecedented manner. That, in a nutshell, is the fallout from last weeks unprecedented turmoil on Wall Street."
Is there any doubt that we're all going to remember last week for a long time? History was made. At the same time, those trying to do things the right way (i.e. eliminate debt; create a personal nest egg in the form of savings; pay for things with cash; etc.) will now be "punished" for that approach and mindset. How so? Well, it's going to be harder to get a mortgage, finance a car, or qualify for a credit card. If you own a business, it will be that much harder to get a loan. That likely will mean that consumers will start spending less and many hard-workers will no longer pursue the American Dream on their own, which could lead to even more job losses, and an even weaker economy.
How does all of this relate to Biblical prophecy? Where does it all fit into the big picture? Does Socialism, Antichrist, One-World Government, One-World Currency, One-World Religion/Ecumenicism, Mark-of-the-Beast all ring a bell?
There are some who are suggesting that the recent economic woes facing our nation and the effect on global markets is inching us ever closer to a one-world currency. They could be right.
However, I would also like to suggest that we are not only seeing a move in that direction economically speaking, but also a move towards ecumenicism. That being said, I think it's quite telling and prophetically significant how BOTH movements seem to be in sync with one another at this critical time in human history.
Let's take at look at things from the economy angle first. Should this economic crisis become a full-blown economic disaster on a worldwide scale (a plausible scenario with gas and food prices increasing by the day) a one-world currency is all but inevitable. We know from what the Bible tells us that there will come a day when this is going to be our reality.
"He also forced everyone, small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on his right hand or on his forehead, so that no one could buy or sell unless he had the mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of his name." Revelation 13:16-17
I'm sure many of us never expected that reality to arrive so soon. Yet, here we are on the horizon of handouts for all who want them courtesy of your helpful and friendly government.
Those who ignore the the relationship between money, banking, and power are in for a rude awakening. Sure, a single global currency sounds good on the surface as the solution to all the world's economic woes, but wage equality and production values are not currency issues per se, albeit currency matters do play a role.
Many of us have no real concept of the incredible power-shift that would occur under such a scheme – a shift that would effectively create a global master of untouchable proportions. All we want to see is an international-sized band-aid solution - “a single global currency” - to address the problem of world poverty.
Martin Walker from UPI wrote, "The most interesting political feature of the Wall Street crisis is not the effect it will have on what looks to be an extremely close presidential race, but just how much of the U.S. economy the new president will be running."
"The U.S. government is fast becoming a socialist institution, owning the commanding heights of the economy. It has taken over responsibility for Freddie Mac (NYSE:FRE) and Fannie Mae (NYSE:FNM). It is now sitting on 80 percent of the shares of American International Group (NYSE:AFF), the insurance giant, in return for an $85 billion loan. It is poised to lend another $25 billion to the troubled U.S. auto industry.
It has extended, through the Federal Reserve central bank, a series of open-ended lifelines to those parts of the financial system that it deems too big to be allowed to fail. It has also, by declining to intervene or by a heavy-handed role in negotiations, forced the liquidation of Bear Stearns (NYSE:BSC) and Lehman Brothers. It did not create the situation in which Merrill Lynch (NYSE:MER) had to sell itself to Bank of America, but it sealed Merrill’s fate by declining to propose any other option.
Only two investment banking giants survive — Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) — and Stanley’s fire-sale purchase of Bear Stearns earlier this year was orchestrated by the man who has become the most consequential federal official of them all, U.S. Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson. Himself a Goldman Sachs veteran, Paulson has become the American Lenin, the man who has seized what the first Soviet leader called 'the commanding heights' of the economy."
We all better open our eyes and realize that our time is short. How could anyone look at the current situation, read the news headlines, listen to the analysis and not reach that conclusion?
As W.L. Mackenzie King (former Prime Minister of Canada) once stated, "Once a nation parts with control of its currency and credit, it matters not who makes that nation’s laws.”
Thus, once the world clamors for a one-world currency it will surely want a one-world government led by a one-world leader. But why stop there?
Turning our attention to the religious angle, let's consider that "ecumenicism" is the doctrine or movement that promotes cooperation and better understanding among different religious denominations, which is aimed at universal religious unity.
Why is this relevant to this particular discussion?
Currently, through the implementation of the Alliance of Civilizations we have a full-fledged, organized and world-wide movement to accomplish this very task, and this is all happening at the same time that the economy is taking a beating and will be in need of a savior or, at the very least, a new system and way of doing things.
Friends, things are moving at an alarming rate. Legendary Radio Talk Show Host Art Bell used a phrase to describe a similar feeling - "the quickening" - and that's precisely what we're experiencing today.
"Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near." Luke 21:28
Keep looking up.
The New F-Word
Walker’s World: Paulson, American Lenin
One World, One Money
Financial Bedlam: How the Mighty Fall
Here's an interesting new website I learned about today. It's called The Agency and it's a new online ministry by David Jeremiah that focuses on interpreting the prophetic signs that are all around us these days.
On September 8th, he began a 10-week study of prophecy called "What In The World Is Going On?" and it's a Radio and Television series that also coincides with scheduled events across the country and the release of Jeremiah's new book with the same name.
The Agency is a pretty neat website that provides visitors with a unique "Case File" on each propehtic sign. The idea is that visitors will check out the website to find answers to questions about Bible prophecy that directly relate to the issue of the week. People are then encouraged to explore their Bibles for the answers, and then watch or listen to Turning Point for additional analysis.
Check it out today and let me know what you think.
A look back at the news stories/commentaries from this past week that have prophetic implications...
- Charles Darwin to Receive Apology from the Church of England for Rejecting Evolution
- Can Someone Hire a Religion Tutor for CNN Reporters?
- The Alliance Of Civilizations: War On Monotheistic Religions?
- Alliance Of Civilizations To Be Held In Turkey
- The Church Against The Rapture
- The Modern Church As A Sad And Sure Sign Of The Times
- Carbon Dating Bible Prophecy
Why is Sarah Palin's religion newsworthy, but Obama's religion off topics?
For those of you wondering why this story shows up on a prophecy related website it's precisely because I believe this story tells us a lot about the spiritual climate in this nation (world) as well as where it's all leading us.
This recent commentary at The New Conservative sums it all up quite nicely for us...
"Recent attacks on Sarah Palin, because she is a practicing Christian, have directed the argument in that matter - if a Conservative is a Christian, they must be some Radical Crusader hell bent on converting Americans by the thousands...Sarah Palin prays, and is demonized because of it. Because the Liberals want to strike fear in the heart of their fellow man that love of God is wrong? Because Liberals want to start a panic that Christians are hell-bent on bringing the inquisition to the United States? Yes. But it is all lies.Where Conservatives are hated for their faith, Liberals are embraced for their bravery in standing up for liberal ideals under the tyranny of Christian Values... or it is ignored all together, as if discussing a Liberal's faith is off limits."
I encourage you to read the entire post titled "Liberals And The 'God Problem' - Obama Claims To 'Hear God'" for an excellent and brief analysis of this double-standard that's perpetrated by the mainstream media.
This argument is getting old. It's separation OF church and state - not separation FROM church and state. There is a MAJOR difference.
I guess I should be happy that we're at least having a debate about religion in this country while our many Brothers and Sisters in Christ around the world are persecuted daily for their faith in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Let's continue to lift them up in prayer.
Obama: His Faith Matters
Obama Out Of Context, Out Of Line
And the beat goes on. There's a disturbing trend within the scientific community these days and it stems from a messiah complex or, at the very least, a belief that if they can't actually become a god then perhaps they can emulate one instead.
Last week, scientists from around the world wanted to stake their claim to creation itself when they fired up the CERN experiment in order to attempt to create the conditions that existed just prior to the "Big Bang" or the origin of life itself.
Having been able to carry out that pursuit without anyone (or any God) stopping them they now arrogantly have moved on to another realm where they don't belong - the human being.
That being said, this morning we read that Australia issues the first license to clone human embryos. How much longer can the world thumb it's nose at our Lord without Him responding and stepping in to help save us from ourselves?
The sad part of all of this is that everything coming from those who authorized this sounds great. In other words, it's all politically correct. For instance, the Chair of the NHMRC's licensing committee, Dr John Findlay, said Sydney IVF's research would be closely monitored.
"They have been given a license to do therapeutic cloning," Findlay told Reuters, adding the scientists are not licensed to reach the fetal stage. They can go to the stage called blastocyst. They must stop at that point," he said.
The blastocyst is a very early-stage embryo not yet implanted into the womb. Findlay said scientists will try and create stem cells from patients who have abnormalities or create stem cell lines which will be compatible with patients which have given the cells. Initially, any stem cells extracted would be used to test new drugs to fight diseases such as muscular dystrophy and Huntington's disease, and later therapeutic cloning would be used to produce body tissue matched to patients.
They must think the world population is stupid (are we?) because anyone who casually followed the entire stem cell debate knows that the only scientific "successes" that have come from embryonic stem cells is the creation of tumors in lab rats. In fact, adult stem cells have had far greater success in not only lab tests, but most importantly in real-world applications - they've helped treat diseases and heal people on a large scale.
However, you'd never know that from the way the mainstream media covers this story. And why is that? Is there something more sinister at work here? You bet there is!
Just because an oversight committee says they will closely monitor the situation doesn't mean anything. Embryonic stem cells haven't proven successful in the lab or in the real-world so that leaves me with the only deduction I can make - if this law allows for human cloning, scientists are definitely going to experiment with human cloning.
Lord come quickly! Keep looking up!
Clones: What Starts With Animals Will Lead To Humans
New Bioethics Book Asks Pro-Life Advocates: Is a Brave New World Upon Us?
The Science Of Star Wars: How Close The Clone Wars?
The big news from this past weekend as well as today involves the misfortunes of Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch. As a result, stocks continue to tumble amid this new Wall Street landscape.
Meanwhile, we now have a top economist saying that Americans should worry about bank deposits especially if Congress doesn't act.
However, it was something else Alan Greenspan said that seemed rather prescient to me: "I can't believe we could have a once-in-a-century type of financial crisis without a significant impact on the real economy globally, and I think that indeed is what is in the process of occurring."
Personally, I think we will see a significant effect on the global economy that portends to become a significant global economic crisis - just the kind you'd expect to see in these end times.
I guess there's no escaping the inevitable at this point now is there? At least we have our faith in our Lord and Savior to carry us through whatever hardships are in store in the coming months.
As the economy weakens and financial markets continue to collapse, we are also beginning to hear news of rising gas costs as well as unprecedented heights in home heating costs this coming winter. Together, these realities could spell disaster especially at the individual and family level.
Yet, is it any wonder that this is where we find ourselves? My friends, open your eyes and recognize that EVERYTHING that's happening right now is not a mere coincidence!
We have wars and rumors of wars in many parts of the world, we have natural disasters occuring with increasing regularity and greater intensity, we have financial markets in distress, as well as political and moral corruption in many parts of the globe. Perhaps many of you have even begun to feel as though the devil knows his time is short as evidenced by the increase in spiritual attacks to you and/or your family and loved ones on a very personal level. I know I have lately.
Surely, the simple fact that all of this is happening AT THE SAME TIME - not to mention in complete conjunction with the U.S. and the world pushing peace and a two-state solution upon Israel or God's Holy Land by the end of 2008 - should give us all pause giving what prophecy tells us.
If you haven't already recognized the truth regarding your need for forgiveness from your sins and the personal Lord and Savior you can have in Jesus Christ I urge you to click on this link now and don't waste another single second.
Your Brother in Christ, Jeff. Keep looking up!
Why study prophecy? Well, besides the fact that Jesus encouraged us to do so I think a case could also be made for the fact that it helps to strengthen our faith - not weaken it by creating fear and uncertainty about the future as most who call it "doom-and-gloom" propose.
More importantly, the study of prophecy gives us undeniable proof that God is who He say He is and that we can trust what He says in His Holy Bible.
If that's the case, we are left with nothing more except a clear choice. Will we choose to follow Him or will we choose to follow the world and our own way? In essence, we must then pick a side. How do we do that? I believe that the parables and prophecies help us pick a side.
Matthew 13:48-50 says, "Which, when it was full, they drew to shore, and sat down, and gathered the good into vessels, but cast the bad away. So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth."
Jesus tells us that the "bad fish" are thrown into the fire. John the Baptist says this in a slightly different way in Matthew 3:12: "[Jesus] will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire." This principle appears somewhat differently in the Parable of the Sheep and Goats (Matthew 25:31-46): Christ is Judge, and He sets the sheep on His right hand and the goats on His left. He judges that the sheep can enter eternal life, while the goats receive the destructive judgment of fire.
Although a final judgment is coming for the world, the church is now under God's judgment (1 Peter 4:17; Revelation 11:1-2). Not only is the sentence coming, but our conduct and growth are also currently being judged - Christ is evaluating whether we meet His high standards. Ultimately, everyone is judged the same way, according to the same standard, by the same criteria. The "bad fish" among us are not ours to judge, but Jesus, the righteous Judge, has promised to judge with equity (Psalm 98:9).
Matthew 13:50 says they are thrown "into the furnace of fire." A similar thing occurs in the Parable of the Weat and the Tares: At the end of the age, the tares will be gathered and thrown into the furnace (verses 30, 41-42). The emphasis in the Parable of the Tares is on the wicked and their evil works and their subsequent judgment.
However, in the Parable of the Dragnet, instead of highlighting the wickedness, Jesus focuses on the process of judgment, not necessarily on condemning evildoers. Some people are condemned for doing wicked things, but others are saved and rewarded for doing the good works assigned to them. God's calling is first impartial, and then His judgment is absolutely fair. The wicked will get only what they deserve.
God's "catch" is the church, a chosen cross section of the entire world; He casts a wide net. However, once those He calls accept Jesus Christ, God does show Himself partial to the "good fish" - those who love Him, obey Him, serve others, grow, and produce spiritual fruit.
In the process of salvation, God judges whether we are good, useable fish or substandard fish fit only for the fire. He judges us according to how we measure up against His standard of righteousness, "the perfect man, . . . the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ" (Ephesians 4:13). God throws His net into the world and drags us in, and if we are unwilling to comply with His holy standard, our eternal judgment will be to be discarded in the fire.
Presently, the church's function is not judicial but declarative.
On the one hand, the church is responsible to warn sinners of the dire consequences of sin and of the time of God's judgment coming upon all humanity.
On the other hand, we are to witness of God's way of life, as well as to proclaim the return of Christ's return and the establishment of God's wonderful, benevolent government here on earth.
That is good news!
(NOTE: The above was inspired by and plagiarized from The Berean online ministry. It is a remarkable resource that I encourage everyone to check out especially if you're interested in interpretting, analyzing, and understanding the Bible literally.)
A look back at the news stories/commentaries from this past week that have prophetic implications...
- Comparing Obama to Jesus and Sarah Palin to Pontius Pilate (Christ's Crucifier)
- Abbas and Olmert reach a 12-point agreement framework
- What do the Qu’ran and many Muslims teach about terrorism? See the movie Fitna
- Christless Christianity: The Alternative Gospel of the American Church
- Great Deception? Medium 'predicts' televised UFO sighting on 14th of October
- Large Hadron Collider: Seeking the 'God Particle'
- Ahmadinejad:Iran will support Hamas until collapse of Israel
Let me be clear - homosexuality is a sin much like any other sin, which can include everything from universally-accepted-to-be-horrible examples like murder to universally-accepted-to-be-benign-things like lying and hate and lust.
If we read our Bibles we would know that Jesus doesn't distinguish one sin from another as being "worse than..." or "not as bad as..." From God's perspective, sin is sin, no matter which way you look at it and sin can be those things that are public (words and actions) as well as those things that are hidden (thoughts and feelings).
Furthermore, we are to love and embrace the sinner helping them to see the error in their ways and hate the sin. At the same time, this doesn't mean we also turn a blind eye to sin for the sake of peace and conflict avoidance.
For instance, when I've struggled with certain sins in the past I thank God that He has given me a loving wife who could not only call me out when she knew I was wrong, but who could also love me and encourage me because she knew that there was a whole new man underneath the burden and influence of those sins.
I would add that the whole debate surrounding homosexuality and gay marriage is one that is only going to get worse. I know that doesn't seem possible, but the politics involved and the party of depravity will see to it.
For instance, I saw this piece from a few weeks back on the Family Research Council's site from before the party conventions. However, I thought it was relevant as it shows the current state of our nation and it's political system.
"Up to 370 homosexual, bisexual, and transgender delegates will reportedly take part in the Democratic National Convention, which is 6% of the total delegates - a proportion roughly 3 times higher than in the general American population.
Governor Kathleen Sebelius of Kansas, a possible running mate for Barack Obama, will be among the prominent speakers at a conference of homosexual activists that has already convened in Denver. But the Denver Post reports that one activist remains 'disappointed' that Democrats can't 'be honest about what we truly feel is equal.'
Research by FRC Action into Obama's statements on same-sex 'marriage,' reported today in an op-ed by Peter Sprigg on our website, confirms that although presumptive Democratic nominee Barack Obama claims to oppose same-sex 'marriage,' what he 'truly feels' is support for radically re-defining marriage.
Obama supports granting 100% of the legal rights and benefits of marriage to homosexual couples; opposes virtually any legal means available of defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman (calling marriage amendments 'divisive and discriminatory'); 'respects' courts that unilaterally overturn the democratically determined definition of marriage; compares legalizing same-sex 'marriage' with legalizing interracial marriage; and 'congratulates' homosexual couples who have entered into legally-recognized civil marriages. This is the definition of a supporter, not an opponent, of same-sex 'marriage.'"
Personally, I'll never understand how anyone who proposes to be a God-fearing, Bible-believing Christian can support a party or a presidential candidate that stands for and promotes such things as abortion and homosexuality.
Look we're all sinners in need of the saving grace of Jesus Christ. I am humbled daily by the thought that God could love a sinner like me who is constantly caught in the middle of a spiritual battle between my flesh and my spirit.
The difference between me and the types of Christians who are ok with these Democratic platforms is that I actually acknowledge sin for what it is, call it by it's name, acknowledge the state I'm in, and am trying to do something about it by asking God to deliver me from it. These other types of people would rather ignore that sin even exists (or if they do acknowledge the existence of sin they pick-and-choose the things they label as such), can't admit that they need forgiveness and deliverance, and leave God out of the entire discussion.
If Obama is a Christian like he claims to be then there's no position he can take that would allow him to openly (and personally) support abortion and gay marriage. Being a Christian and supporting one of these two causes (or both) is mutually exclusive.
Just another case of the donkey thinking he can kick the Lion repeatedly and get away with it.
Obama Backs Same-Sex 'Marriage' by Peter Sprigg
Today we mark the 7th anniversary of the tragic events that took place on American soil on Spetember 11, 2001.
It's become ritualistic to say "I'll never forget..." when beginning to describe that horrible day and it's impact on the world.
In addition to paying tribute to those innocent and brave men, women, and children who lost their lives that day (and those who have lost their lives since), I would also like to take a moment to briefly share my account of that day especially since it's the very reason I am able to write this post in this type of forum.
It was a Tuesday morning that began much like any other for me with one exception. I had to take my dad to work that morning before heading to class (I was in college at the time) because he didn't have his car. It was strange because he car was newer and strange because our lives were so busy and out of sync at the time that it was the first chance we had in awhile to sit together and talk one-on-one without having to rush somewhere separately.
I also remember how beautiful and peaceful it was outside that morning. The sun was shining brightly in the big blue sky and there wasn't a single cloud to be seen anywhere! The weather was absolutely gorgeous for a morning in September. Little did I know that in a few short hours it would turn from a gorgeous morning in September to a day of mourning in September.
My procedure when I arrived at school was just as it had been every other day that semester. The first class of the day was Mass Media 101, which began around 9:15am. Typically, I went to the Student Union, bought myself a coffee and a small snack, and then went straight to the Library to check my email. Like I said, no different than any other morning.
Yahoo! will also always hold a special and eerie place in my heart because that was the medium that first alerted me to the tragedy that was taking place a few hundred miles away. When I first opened and Internet Browser window so I could check my email I read the "Top Stories: Headlines" section first. The lead headline was, "Small Plane Hits World Trade Center Tower" and my first thought was, "That's awful! I wonder how a trained pilot could miss a building that size and accidentally crash into it? I feel sorry for all those people affected by it. I guess this will be on the news tonight so I can find out more then." I then logged in and checked my email. By the time I logged out and was taken back to the Home Page (not long at all because I only had 1 or 2 new emails) the headline had changed to something like, "Second Plane Hits Other Tower: Terrorism Suspected" and now my first thought was, "Oh man! Whoever's responsible for this is going to pay really soon!" and I proceeded to head to my Mass Media class.
The next series of events is where things become surreal.
I remember walking from the Library through the Student Union to get to the building where my class was held because it was the quickest route. Walking through the Union was an experience in itself because the place was absolutely buzzing with people standing around talking about this, people running, others on their cell phones frantically trying to place calls to loved ones in New York City. Just before I reached the exit doors I heard someone shout, "They hit the Pentagon too!!!" My heart skipped a beat.
Hitting two civilian towers was bad enough, but targeting and successfully attacking the symbol of our nation's military prowess was "crossing the line" in my book. "All's fair in love and war..." might be an accepted concept in Western Culture even if it's accepted subconciously, but there was a part of me that felt scared for a moment as I contemplated what this could mean. Were we being attacked all across the country? Why wasn't our government and military able to prevent the attack on the Pentagon? What country or organization would be gutsy enough to attack us in such a fashion?
Before I entered the building where my class was being held I even thought to myself, "Whatever country is responsible for this today will no longer exist tomorrow!" Call it fear, anger, nationalistic pride, whatever it was all those feelings and emotions became wrapped up together and that's the sentiment they created within me.
When I entered the building where my class was I saw something I had never seen before or ever seen since. The lobby area had 4 TV's mounted around the room. They were NEVER in use for some reason, but today all 4 were tuned in to the local and national media who were reporting on these unfolding events. The weirdest part was standing there with about 50-100 other students while all of us had our heads cocked back and looking at at whichever TV was closest and none of us said a single word or even moved if I remember correctly. I didn't think of it until years later, but we were almost mimicing the very same body language and actions of those who were on the streets in NYC witnessing things live and first-hand. Let that imagery sink in for a moment. Prophetic foreshadowing of the Rapture and other things to come?
When class finally started and we all filed in our instructor somberly explained to us what had happened because he had been watching and recording the news' coverage since the story first broke. Between the time it took to enter the classroom, find our seats, and sit down to get ready for our class to begin that's when the towers fell so nearly all of us who had just been outside in the Lobby together watching TV had no idea that things just got much worse until our instructor filled us in and showed us the video. Many people screamed out loud, others cried, others ran out with their cell phones to their ears. I sat there in complete shock.
Class was obviously dismissed and I immediately went to my car and headed home. I remember being frightened listening to the local news talk radio station because there was still so much that we didn't know. One local report warned people to be cautious and on the lookout for white, unmarked moving vans kind of like the U-Haul van used in the Oklahoma City Bombing years earlier. When I got home I just sat there and stared at the TV without saying a word. I had to work that afternoon and I remember bringing in a small TV so that we could still watch the news and stay informed.
I didn't know anyone who personally lost their life on that day or who lost someone, but I do remember how depressed I became. That entire week I spent most of my time in front of that TV feeding on asteady diet of destruction, pain, and a loss of life. It wasn't until my wife (who was my girlfriend at the time) suggested we get out of the house and do something that I stopped that process, and even then I felt guilty doing anything that I enjoyed.
Now to the important part. That one life and and world changing event was the catalyst that set me on a path that ultimately resulted in my finding salvation in my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
After 9/11, I began searching for answers. At the time, I was big into Nostradamus - as were a lot of people. While I’m not exactly sure when or how it happened, I just sort of stumbled onto books and writings that people had done regarding Biblical prophecy.
At that same time, I was like most people. Sure, I believed in "a god" of some sort, but with all the different choices out there how would I know which one was the right path? In addition, I too believed that "Heaven" and "Hell" were nothing more then the figment of some person’s imagination. Plus, 9/11 proved to me that life on earth could easily be considered Hell.
So, like most people, I just figured that I was a pretty good person and that no matter who God was - if there was one - I would end up in Heaven. The reason I mention this is important. I wasn’t a skeptic, but I was pretty objective and took everything with a grain of salt. However, as I began to read more and more and study Bible prophecy and what respected scholars from many different time periods had to say about it a trend emerged.
I quickly picked up on the fact that a lot of what the Bible talked about - and I mean a lot - had already happened or was happening right before my eyes!
What made it all surreal was how specific the prophecies were. I mean, I tried to remain as objective as possible, but I soon realized that anyone with a brain, and common sense, and the willingness to take the time to research it all would see for themselves just how incredibly amazing world events were lining up with what the Bible predicted thousands of years ago with such specific detail!
Needless to say, this was about the time I began to put more credibility in the concept of God - as Christians saw Him - and likewise, began to look at the Bible more seriously.
Prophecy is what finally convinced me that there was something to this God and Christianity thing. It's interesting because millions of people will put their faith in the writings of Nostradamus (and many did, myself included, after 9/11) even though his accuracy and success rate are nothing compared to the Bible!
Heck, we'll even believe in aliens, crop circles, and ghosts, but not anything religious or related to God. Why is that? I mean, if the Bible says something will happen it will happen EXACTLY the way it's described. I now had the proof, saw it with my own eyes, and analyzed it with my own brain. I think that if people really took the time to research things they would be amazed to find that the Bible is 100% accurate and 100% right - all the time.
If you really want to make your head spin consider this...If prophecy proves that there's truth to Christianity, God, and the Bible then why wouldn't we want to see what God has to say about other things by reading the Bible?
This is what first led me to a foundational faith in the existence of God. Soon after, I entered into a personal relationship with Him as well and the rest is history.
So, as you can see, while 9/11 is an important moment in the lives of many it is truly the one moment in my life that I can point to and say with absolute certainty that had it never happened I may not be here writing this to you today. I may not even be a Christian forgiven and saved by the blood of Jesus Christ if it weren't for 9/11!
What's your story?
9/11 Anniversary: We Must Never Forget
When Flight 77 Struck
Working To Remember Forever The Victims Of 9/11
Even though the protests over Russia's invasion of Georgia have subsided, don't lose sight of Georgia and what's still going on in that part of the world as being irrelevant or unimportant to the rest of the world.
Steven Collins wrote a fascinating piece the other day on this very subject and he referenced several news items to make the case that...
Obviously, with the USA backing Georgia’s NATO application, Georgia’s airbases could just as easily have been used by either Israeli or US jets to attack Iran, so Russia’s attack upon the Georgian airbases thwarts the plans of both the USA and the Israelis.
It also serves notice that there will be a major cost if the USA attacks Iran. If the USA attacks Iran, Russian tanks may given the green light to advance into all the nations located in the Caucasus."
As students of prophecy, surely we've all realized that any geo-political maneuver in these end times is simply another chess piece being moved into position. However, this news sheds some light on the "big picture" and gives us a better idea of what might be going on behind the scenes at this very moment.
It's definitely something to consider.
Tomorrow's the big day so to speak. Tomorrow, science fiction becomes science fact. It's the day when scientists hope to re-create the "Big Bang" and study it.
I guess if you can't actually be a god perhaps the next best thing is to show Him that you can be just like Him. Yet, tomorrow will mark the epitome of arrogance, not the height of man's intellect. The worldwide concern and panic has already been well-documented here as well as by many other sources worldwide.
Now, there's nothing that can be done to stop the inevitable. Are we on the eve of our destruction? Are we set to unleash a catastrophe we can't even imagine? Is this all just one big waste of time and nothing to be worried about?
Only God knows the answer to those questions. In the meantime, here's a look at CERN beginning with "CERN: 50 Years of Science" a documentary covering 50 years of scientific research at CERN that was produced for CERN's 50th anniversary...
Here's a promotional video I found called "CERN in 3 Minutes" and it's a 3-minute tour of CERN and its research facilities...
And here's one individual's take on the dangers of the unknown from conducting such an experiment like this...
As I dug a little deeper I also came acorss this breath-taking video called "Ouroboros, CERN, and A Trip Through the Water Door." It's a brief synopsis of one man's research of the correlation between the water door Wormhole, The CERN facility (which may unlock the secrets of the universe for the second time in human history), and the Death/Rebirth themes of Ouroboros (the Eternal Serpent). Take a moment to watch this 10-minute video and let the prophetic implications of all of this sink in for a moment...
Are you con-CERN-ed? Maybe we should be. Geneva is 6 hours ahead of where I am in the Northeastern part of the United States and by my research it seems as though things will get underway in Europe around 9am Geneva time (or 3am my time).
This could be the biggest story in the history of mankind or, it could be the biggest dud of a story much like Y2K was. Either way, I fear that we're playing with things we have no business messing with.
Lord, have mercy on us all.
Dis-CERN-ing The Times
Bye bye credit cards! Hello mark-of-the-beast technology becoming mainstream!
Britain's biggest credit card provider - Barclaycard - is to boost its contactless payment system, which it believes will mean the physical plastic credit card will die out in the foreseeable future.
Barclaycard, owned by Barclays Plc, introduced its first contactless credit card as the OnePulse product one year ago, in which a microchip allows customers to pay for goods by touching the card against a reader without having to remove it from their wallet or purse.
The group now plans to issue over 1 million contactless cards by the end of this year. Barclaycard then plans to make it possible to put the chip into a mobile phone or key fob (and from there implanted in the body), meaning the need to carry a plastic credit card will disappear.
"In time you won't have to carry a plastic credit card around with you if you don't want to, although some people will chose to for nostalgic reasons," Barclaycard Chief Executive Officer Antony Jenkins said in a statement on Monday.
Biggest Credit Card Provider Admits Buying Via Embedded Microchips Soon To Replace All Credit Cards
The man who has succeeded in placing himself one November election away from the White House in the most powerful position in our country is at it again.
Despite a 20-year history as a member of a church of controversey, despite associations with those who are a little more than just friendly to the terrorist cause, and despite an autobiography that clearly states his thoughts and feelings about things, Barack Obama continues to wiggle his way out of the media's spotlight whenever it threatens to shine a light on the truth that is at his core and at the heart of his convictions.
How the American public (and the world) can continue to turn a blind eye to his true faith and its potential impact on an Obama presidency (i.e. U.S. and World Politics) continues to baffle me. Then again, we are in the last days, which is a time that's described as being dominated by deception at every turn.
Plus, on second thought, I guess it's not entirely his fault. I mean, our own mainstream media are giving him a free pass and failing in their duty to serve the public's best interests. Don't believe me? How else do you explain this Freudian slip and the lack of attention given to it today in the news?
In what should be one of the most astonishing gaffes and self-inflicted wounds in American political history, Democratic presidential candidate Barack Hussein Obama referred to "my Muslim faith" in a nationally televised interview with ABC's "This Week" commentator George Stephanopoulus.
The "Freudian slip" confirmed what many researchers and political opponents have been claiming, and what the mainstream media has allowed him to deny - until now.
While Stephanopoulus several seconds later tried to correct him, helpfully interjecting "Christian faith," it was too late. The damage was done. Obama clearly did not mean his Christian faith, which would have made no sense in that context...
OBAMA: "And what was the first thing the McCain’s campaign went out and did? They said, look, these liberal blogs that support Obama are out there attacking Governor Palin. Let’s not play games. What I was suggesting — you’re absolutely right that John McCain has not talked about my Muslim faith. And you’re absolutely right that that has not come…"
Fortunately, there are those news organizations like Raiders News Network (RNN) who will report all the news that is fit to print even if we might not like what we read.
Case in point, one headline today that read, "In Stunning Slip On National TV, Obama Refers To His 'Muslim Faith'" and it's the source article for this post. I encourage everyone to take a few minutes to read it in its entirity.
And for those of you who will be quick to defend him, here's a valid thought to consider from RNN on this subject:
"Obama defenders were quick to claim he meant to say 'his Christian faith.' But if you are a Christian, ask yourself how many times you...or members of your church...or your pastor from the pulpit...has slipped and referred to their 'Muslim faith'."
In my next of the woods we are fortunate to have Niagara Falls. What about in your part of existence? There's nothing to write home about you say? Nonsense! You don't need to live near a "great natural wonder" to enjoy the pure beauty of God's creation.
Just take a closer look outside and you'll find evidence everywhere - from the sunrise and sunset, to the birds chirping nearby, to that one flower that grows near your porch. Whatever it is, God created as evidence of His existence to us as well as to bring glory to Himself.
So, with that in mind, I present to you a slideshow of the greatest natural wonders across the globe. Forget about only 7! Here are 15 amazing natural wonders!
Make Your Own Slideshow More Slideshows
Last week, we took a closer look at the Book of Amos and it's relevance to our modern society.
Today, I thought it would be good to spend a little more time on this important book in what I call "Famous Amos: Part 2" especially after coming across this excerpt by John W. Ritenbaugh's piece titled "Prepare to Meet Your God! (The Book of Amos) (Part Two)"...
"Then answered Amos, and said to Amaziah, I was no prophet, neither was I a prophet's son; but I was an herdman, and a gatherer of sycomore fruit: And the LORD took me as I followed the flock, and the LORD said unto me, Go, prophesy unto my people Israel. Now therefore hear thou the word of the LORD: Thou sayest, Prophesy not against Israel, and drop not thy word against the house of Isaac. Therefore thus saith the LORD; Thy wife shall be an harlot in the city, and thy sons and thy daughters shall fall by the sword, and thy land shall be divided by line; and thou shalt die in a polluted land: and Israel shall surely go into captivity forth of his land." (Amos 7:14-17)
When Amos answers, "I was no prophet, nor was I a son of a prophet, but I was a herdsman and a tender of sycamore fruit" (Amos 7:14), he contends that God Himself commissioned him to "prophesy to My people Israel" (verse 15). Amos was simply a faithful servant of God, with no formal training for the job God sent him to do. "So," he says, "don't tell me not to prophesy when God tells me to!" The apostles said much the same to the Sanhedrin (Acts 5:29).
Then he utters his prophetic denunciation of Amaziah (Amos 7:17). Amaziah's wife and children are included in the curse for two reasons. First, as shown earlier, a leader determines the course of those under him. Any curse that fell on Amaziah would also, to one degree or another, affect his family.
Second, it is a biblical principle that families are often unified in belief. The saying, "Blood is thicker than water," concedes that family ties often prove stronger than the influence of God's Holy Spirit. Frequently, if one leaves the church, others in the family will leave too.
As one member of the family rises or falls, so do the others. Because of his bold denunciation of God's prophet, Amaziah would suffer, and his family would suffer with him. God would see to it that this priest of Bethel would witness in a personal way the coming destruction of the nation as it fell upon his family with a vengeance.
This example, the only narrative section in the entire book, graphically illustrates the fruits of complacency and pride. God sends His prophets to ring as many warning bells as they can to wake His people up to the urgency of the times. The window of opportunity to avert the prophesied disaster is a small one, and God wants His people to use that time to seek Him and change their ways.
The prophet depicts a Laodicean society, like the United States today, from the top echelons to the lowest of beggars (Isaiah 1:5-6). Such a nation prefers form over substance, words over deeds, and tolerance over righteousness.
A sober glance around this nation speaks volumes about the downward spiral already in progress. Crime is rampant on our streets and in our homes. Government scandal and corruption are common news items. Our families are falling apart while we make speeches about "family values."
We also see Laodiceanism creeping into the church as the people begin adopting the lifestyles and attitudes of the world. When they equate material prosperity with spiritual acceptance, they become satisfied with themselves and their spiritual progress (Revelation 3:17). Seeing what Laodiceanism produces, we should never let ourselves become spiritually complacent.
The signs of the times are all around (Luke 12:54-56). It is not good enough just to see them, though. We must act upon this knowledge and truly seek God. Isaiah writes, "Seek the Lord while He may be found, call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon." (Isaiah 55:6-7).
Now is the time!
A look back at the news stories/commentaries from this past week that have prophetic implications...
I'll be the first to admit that I don't read the Bible as much as I'd like to or even should. In fact, I still have a very difficult time memorizing verses to store in my heart and mind for the times when I need to recall them. Even so, I know I read it more than most because it's not simply sitting on my nightstand collecting dust.
So, I guess I shouldn't be surprised then when someone - especially a politician - cherry picks a particular verse completely out of context to use for their own personal agenda. I think I'm just more frustrated that so many intelligent people can't see right through this. And why is that? Perhaps it's simply because they haven't read their Bibles and they don't know the truth. Regardless, it's certainly another sign of the times.
Many people hear these politically correct words mixed with a verse or two from Scripture and they accept it at face value - hook, line, and sinker. If it sounds good then it must be good and true, right? Wrong.
Case in point, I have an issue with one of Senator Barack Obama's answers to a question at the Saddleback Civil Forum hosted by pastor Rick Warren a few weeks back.
"What is America’s greatest moral failure?"
In response to the question, Obama said – citing a well-known Bible verse – that America’s greatest moral failure has been that we don’t abide by Jesus’ words: "whatever you do for the least of my brothers, you do for me." Obama went on to identify the “the least of Jesus’ brothers” as the victims of poverty, racism and sexism.
As Holly Pivec from Fulfilled Prophecy recently pointed out, "Obama’s answer received hearty applause from the audience, many of whom were members of Warren’s megachurch in Lake Forest, California. Yet his use of the verse was taken out of its biblical context."
She's absolutely correct. She goes on to say that, "The verse, Matthew 25:40, is part of a larger sermon Jesus gave on the end times called the 'Olivet Discourse' (Matthew 24-25). Matthew 24:1-35 records the signs of Jesus’ return, Matthew 24:36-25:30 warns of the need for watchfulness and readiness for His return, and Matthew 25:31-46 speaks of the rewards and judgments He will hand out at His coming. The verse Obama cited is part of this last section, where Jesus is speaking of the reward that will be given to those who show kind treatment to His persecuted followers during the last-days tribulation — a tribulation he describes earlier in His sermon (Matthew 24:15-22). In other words, 'the least of Jesus’ brothers' are people who will be persecuted for their faith in Christ. They’re not the victims of poverty, racism and sexism, as Obama stated."
I understand that Obama isn’t the only professing Christian who is guilty of taking Jesus’ words in Matthew out of context (he won't be the last either) and my point is not that Christians shouldn’t reach out in love to sinners, the needy, and outcasts.
I am in full agreement with Pivec who concludes in her piece, "My point is simply that when people misquote this passage — no matter how well-intentioned they may be — they lose two important truths Jesus taught: (1) believers will suffer persecution during the end times, and (2) we must be sure to reach out to those who do suffer persecution. But, sadly, the end times is a neglected topic in many churches today, which explains how Obama is able to address a largely Christian audience, and nation, and misapply a biblical verse — and no one seems to notice." Obama was simply out of context and out of line.
Sadly, this is the first time I've heard someone comment on this. Even Rick Warren, the Pastor who hosted the event, didn't call Obama out on this or clarify such things to his flock and to the nation that was watching.
That begs the question, what is Rick Warren interested in more? Saving the lives of his congregation by preaching and adhering to biblical truth or saving the political life of his "friend" Barack Obama?
Furthermore, I think it's fitting that a man known for his eloquence and mastery of the English language (a great orator) would make such a blatant misstatement although it does jive with his modus operandi, which is to always give the public more style than substance.
As politicians like Obama continue to give the nation sound bytes that are out of context during an election year they must be laughing at our ignorance and lack of discernment. We've become a nation of sheeple led to the slaughter by our own blind acceptance of error for truth. Unfortunately, God isn't laughing.
When religious persecution becomes a harsh reality here in the U.S. like it is for our brothers and sisters in Christ overseas and in other parts of the world we won't be laughing either. It's too bad we can't recognize when God may be trying to send us a message through the supposedly benign comments from a politician during a nationally televised political forum.
Barack Obama, Jesus and ‘The Least of These’ — What Holly Thinks
Here's an interesting resource that was brought to my attention on a message board today. It's a Global Disaster Alert Map that displays "disaster" events in real-time.
It's a global map with symbols representing the type of disasters that are going on or ones that have recently occured - volcanoes, earthquakes, hurricanes, biological and chemical hazards, complex disasters, etc.
It really gives a great picture of exactly what's happening all over the globe at the same time. Just mouse over the symbols, and it gives you the time, date, and type of disaster. Click on the symbol, and it routes to a page giving some information about the current disaster.
If you click on "Icon Description"(just below the map) it's the key to all of the Icons used on the map. Scroll down on the page, and it has listed all the current disasters in text format.
I imagine this is an example of a small portion of what God is in the midst of during every single second and minute of every single day. Too much for our little brains, but not too much for our all-knowing, all-powerful God!
IMPORTANT NOTE: While it's a very cool map, I personally must advise you not to sign up for the email alerts! Some people mentioned how they eagerly signed up for the "Event Alerts" some time ago and literally received 50 of them a day!!! Every time there was a car accident in somewhere they received an alert. Every time there was a fire they received an alert. So, if you sign-up, be prepared to get deluged with email pertaining to events that may not even rate important enough to be reported on your local 6:00 pm news.
Seems as though each and every day lately we have a new major headline emerging that involves the tiny state of Israel, which is a piece of land roughly the size of Texas.
Yesterday, we highlighted several "wars and rumors of wars" type of headlines, and today our focus is on the status of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount - two key pieces to the prophetic puzzle.
RaidersNewsNetwork said it best with their, "Olmert Get's An Antichrist Of An Idea: Let A World Council Decide The Fate Of Jerusalem, Temple Mount" headline.
Get this! Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has proposed to Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas that the international community participate in helping to determine the status of Jerusalem. The international community's role would be that of advisors, but would give it large media exposure in attempts to divide the city and make it a shared capital of both Israel and a new Arab country. One U.S. plan for Jerusalem was divided into timed phases, and among other things called for Israel eventually to consider forfeiting parts of the Temple Mount, Judaism's holiest site.
Meanwhile, economic misery, coupled with multiple hurricanes off the coasts and bad Middle East company, has the Bush administration feverishly focused on forcing the infamous Roadmap to Peace into immediate implementation. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is scurrying about in an attempt to finalize a performance-based two-state solution in the Holy Land while the ancient enemies of Israel are restocking their deadly arsenals.
Bill Salus (author of Isralestine) had this to say amongst other things in a column he wrote yesterday, "Modern-day Israel miraculously exists in fulfillment of Bible prophecy, and unless the Judeo-Christian Jehovah fibbed about Abraham's future fortunes in Genesis 15:18, portions of Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and Saudi Arabia belong to, and are about to be possessed by, the modern-day Jewish state. Call it ridiculous or illogical, but it is an inheritance dating back 4,000 years. In fact, it is this title deed that the ancient enemies of Israel have contested from time immemorial. The tiny 'small notch' of land the world calls Israel today is nowhere near the size and scope their G-d intended homeland. For 60 years, the international community has unsuccessfully attempted to negotiate a Middle East solution, and a flimsy, inflammatory 'Roadmap' is its best foot forward. Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on your point of view, the days of antiquated declarations, partition plans and politically brokered real estate deals have concluded for the 'Chosen.'"
Amen! Friends, we're seeing the fulfillment of prophecy before our very eyes! Are you ready for what lies ahead? Have you told those in your sphere of influence (family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, strangers) their time is short? If not, this might be a good place for them to start.
Let the world decide? Why don't we defer to our Lord and Savior and let Him decide what happens to Israel, Jerusalem, and the Temple Mount? Oh, that's right! He already did!
Confirmed: Jerusalem, Temple Mount On Negotiating Table
David R. Reagan is such a blessing to us students of prophecy. Here's another excellent piece he recently penned titled The Jews In End Time Prophecy and if this doesn't convince you that we're close - very close - to the prophesied last days I don't know what will.
Because when it comes to Israel and prophecy we have undeniable proof that we can trust what God and the Bible has to say about EVERYTHING.
We are living in exciting times when we can witness Bible prophecy being fulfilled before our very eyes. Many of these prophecies relate to the Jewish people and their nation. Below is a summary of prophecies concerning the Jews that are currently being fulfilled and those that are yet to be fulfilled.
PROPHECIES CURRENTLY BEING FULFILLED
1. The Jewish people will be regathered in unbelief from the four corners of the earth
(Isaiah 11:11-12). Fulfillment: 20th Century and continuing.
2. The state of Israel will be re-established
(Isaiah 66:7-8 and Ezekiel 37:21-22). Fulfillment: May 14, 1948.
(Zechariah 8:4-8). Fulfillment: June 7, 1967.
4. The land of Israel will be reclaimed from its desolation, becoming once again a land of agricultural abundance
(Ezekiel 36:34-35). Fulfillment: 20th Century and continuing.
5. The Hebrew language will be revived from the dead
(Zephaniah 3:9). Fulfillment: 19th & 20th Centuries.
6. All the nations of the world will come together against Israel over the issue of the control of Jerusalem
(Zechariah 12:1-3). Fulfillment: Currently occurring.
PROPHECIES YET TO BE FULFILLED
1. The Arab nations of the world will attack Israel in a coordinated effort to annihilate the state (Psalm 83).
2. Israel will soundly defeat the Arab alliance
3. Israel will dwell in security and prosperity (Ezekiel 38:11).
4. A Russian coalition consisting mainly of Muslim nations will invade Israel (Ezekiel 38:1-17).
5. The Russian coalition will be destroyed supernaturally by God (Ezekiel 38:18-23 and 39:1-8).
6. The Antichrist will intervene and guarantee the security of Israel, enabling the Jews to rebuild their Temple (Daniel 9:27).
7. At the end of three and a half years, the Antichrist will enter the rebuilt Temple in Jerusalem and declare himself to be God (Daniel 9:27, Matthew 24:15-18, and 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4).
8. The Jews will reject the Antichrist, and he will respond with an attempt to annihilate them, killing two-thirds of them in the process (Revelation 12:13-17 and Zechariah 13:8-9).
9. At the end of the Tribulation, when the Jews have come to the end of themselves, they will turn to God and receive Yeshua as their Messiah (Zechariah 12:10, Romans 9:27-28, and Romans 11:25-27).
10. Jesus will return and regather all believing Jews to Israel (Deuteronomy 30:1-9).
11. Israel will be established as the prime nation in the world (Isaiah 2:1-4 and Micah 4:1-7).
12. The Lord will bless the Jewish remnant by fulfilling all the promises He has made to Israel (Isaiah 60:1-62:7).
13. The blessings of God will flow out to all the nations through the Jewish people during the Millennial rule of Jesus (Zechariah 8:22-23).
PROPHECIES CONCERNING THE CHURCH
Christians should find the fulfillment of these prophecies very encouraging because God has also made a lot of promises through Bible prophecy to the Church. As we see the Lord fulfilling every promise He has made to the Jews, we can be assured that He will fulfill all the promises He has made to the Church through His Prophetic Word.
He has promised that one day very soon, His Son will appear in the Heavens. There will be the shout of an archangel and the blowing of a shofar, and all the dead in Christ will be resurrected to meet Him in the sky. And those of us who are alive will be taken up also, not even experiencing death (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). We will receive glorified, perfected bodies (Isaiah 35:5-6 and Philippians 3:21). We will return to Heaven with the Lord to await the end of the Tribulation (John 14:1-4). While in Heaven, we will be judged to receive our degrees of rewards (2 Corinthians 5:10) and we will celebrate our union with the Lord at the "Marriage Supper of the Lamb" (Revelation 19:7-9).
We will then return with the Lord to this earth (Revelation 19:14), and we will reign with Him for a thousand years (Revelation 20:1-6). During that glorious reign, we will see the earth flooded with peace, righteousness and justice, as the waters cover the seas (Isaiah 11:1-9).
At the end of the Millennium, we will be removed from this earth to the New Jerusalem the Lord has been preparing for us, and from that vantage point, we will witness the greatest fireworks display in history as God envelops this earth in fire, burning away the pollution of Satan's last revolt (2 Peter 3:10-13). Out of that fiery inferno will come new heavens and a new earth where we will live forever in the New Jerusalem in the presence of Almighty God and His Son (Revelation 21:1-7).
Maranatha! Come quickly, Lord Jesus!
If this is your first and last visit to Look Up Fellowship then this is the only post you'll ever need to read to get an idea of exactly where we are on the prophetic timeline.
I've said it several times over the past few weeks - these are very exciting times we're living in, and given all the signs around us that these are in fact the "last days" prophesied in the Bible, we need to make sure that we preach the Gospel to those who are lost with greater passion and urgency as we continue looking up.
Almost as if on cue, there was this perfect marriage of world geo-political events that mirrored not only the events foretold in the Bible, but also the scenario as outlined in a new bestseller that seeks to reinterpret long-held beliefs about how the end times events would unfold. I was surprised to learn that the subject of this new best-seller is the very scenario briefly touched upon last week in the When Prophecies Collide? post on this website.
Even though Russia has advanced south into Georgia, a best-selling new Bible prophecy book says suggestions this signals an imminent march into the Middle East are mistaken. Instead, says Bill Salus, author of "Isralestine," the world is about to be surprised by a different kind of devastating regional war involving Israel and its Arab neighbors.
"Isralestine: The Ancient Blueprints of the Future Middle East," currently rising to the top of the prophecy charts, says scholars have missed a significant piece of what the Bible reveals about the future of the region. And it has many of them reconsidering their prophetic model for the near future.
"You can set Russia's recent invasion of Georgia and Israel's concern over Iran's nuclear aspirations on the back burner, not that these topics lack importance," says Salus. "The stage is not adequately set for the highly publicized Ezekiel 38 and 39 Russian-Iranian nuclear-equipped consortia of nations to invade Israel. Psalm 83 comes first, and then Ezekiel 38 follows on its heels like a Goliath shadow. There are two distinct invasions of Israel, one building upon the other, with both occurring sequentially in the Middle East..." (emphasis mine).
Wow! Let that sink in for a moment and then reexamine the headlines as they exist today (some as recent as within the last few hours!)...
- Israel Conducts First Civilian Exercise To Prepare For 'Dirty Bomb' Attack
- Syria Warns Of 'Catastrophic' Effect Of Any Israeli Strike On Iran
- Hamas Calls on Egypt to Send Army to Jerusalem
- War Preps: Israel Building Underground Hospitals
I must admit that it's certainly a plausible scenario, which makes one suspect that the timing of the release of this bestseller to coincide with world events was precisely the plan by God all along.
If by some chance that doesn't have your attention then consider reading Terry James' (best-selling author of the popular Left Behind series) review of this book below and know that he even said, "I have to say that with his book, Bill has my attention, when thinking on things taking place at such a torrid pace in the Middle East and the world...My own set-in-stone position hasn’t yet fractured, but I sense the quaking, so must rethink the composite that forms the foundation. The reading of Isralestine is an ingredient well worth adding to the mixture in making the eschatological base more secure."
When Prophecies Collide by Jeffrey K. Radt
Israelistan, Part 2 by Michael G. Mickey
Terry James Book Review Of Isralestine
What's going on with the planet? The last few days have produced some of the worst natural disasters that we've seen this year and the extent of the damage including the threat of what's left to come still remains to be seen.
These devastating events aren't reserved for one part of the world either since they've taken place in many different parts of the world.
First, it was about 2 weeks ago that India and other South Asian countries had to deal with the effects of monsoon floods. The monsoon caused the Kosi River to overflow its banks, which caused estimates of the number of dead ranging from scores to thousands and left 700,000 people trapped with little or no food. Flooding in Bangladesh cut off at least 20,000 people. Thankfully, Indian officials have commandeered private watercraft after they found that private boat owners were charging people up to $150 each for a life-saving ride - an impossibly large amount for those caught in the impoverished villages that were affected.
A 6.1 earthquake struck Sichuan province Saturday along the same fault line as the May 12th earthquake that killed nearly 70,000 people.
At the time of this writing, Hurricane Gustav was set to reach land along the Gulf Coast of the Untied States (state of Louisiana) as a Category 3 storm. While this is a bit of a "relief" since many predicted a Category 5, a 3 is still an awful system to deal with. Aside from the human element (measured in loss of life, homes, communities), the nation is also holding its breath since several oil refineries and production rigs including billions of dollars at stake in other wide-ranging economic sectors could damage an already volatile U.S. economy.
So, what does it all mean prophetically? Personally, I think the key is the intensity and the frequency of such events which should both increase - like birth labor pains - as we get closer and closer to the end.
But don't take my word for it. Study what the Bible and Jesus Christ Himself had to say about such things.
The most intriguing aspect to all of this?
On August 25th it was reported that U.S. Secretary of State Condi Rice has been pushing Israel to split Jerusalem into 2 parts to satisfy the Palestinians and the world. In other words, she has been pushing to divide God's holy land. And we all know what God has to say about that.
When did Tropical Strom Gustav (now a Hurricane) form in the Carribean? Surprise, surprise! It was also on August 25th!
Actually, that was a tongue-in-cheek response because I'm not really surprised by that at all. Now, I must admit that it's not clear if an official representative of the U.S. actually spoke such words publicly on the 25th or if the mainstream media simply published a report on that day indicating previous attempts to do so, but either way I still find it interesting that a Category 3 Hurricane that is set to inflict more death and destruction on a part of the U.S. came into being ON THE SAME DAY as a high-ranking U.S. government official calls for dividing God's holy land.
More food for thought.
A Global Warning by Jeffrey K. Radt
Bible Prophecy And Environmentalism by Todd Strandberg at Rapture Ready
The Stage Is Set: Will It Be Judgment Or Destruction? by Jeffrey K. Radt
The Stage Is Set: Will We Ask For Destruction Or Plead For Mercy? by Jeffrey K. Radt