This page contains all Commentary entries for 2016. Use the text links provided at the beginning of each month to navigate throughout the page. The menu below will take you to similar pages for previous years.
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1/4/2016 — From the "God, Allah, Whatever" Department...
Larycia Hawkins, a tenured professor of political science at Wheaton College in suburban Chicago, made headlines recently by wearing a hijab (a Muslim women's headdress) to class and then announcing at a press conference that Christians and Muslims worship the same God.
The incident might have largely passed unnoticed in these politically correct, "Islam gets a free pass" times in which we live, were it not for one small detail:
Wheaton College is a respected Evangelical Christian institute.
The college triggered no small amount of blowback by placing Professor Hawkins on administrative leave until the mess could be sorted out, which many promptly decried as a bigoted, knee-jerk reaction. For her part, Professor Hawkins has no plans to resign, according to an article in The Guardian.
"And the beat goes on..."
The drum beat, that is, of a world intent on rejecting the true, living God who loves them and replacing Him with the god of this world who loathes them.
So, this respected Evangelical Christian institute must either (a) boldly stand their ground and formally reprimand Professor Hawkins for making public statements that openly contradict the college's statement of faith—the foundational biblical principles upon which the college was established, or (b) meekly compromise those same principles by doing something else.
Incidentally, Professor Hawkins has affirmed the college's statement of faith on at least three occasions. I don't know...maybe she didn't understand the question.
This is just the most recent volley fired in the "we all worship the same God" ground war, but its elevated profile will cause it to have greater repercussions. If the college sticks to its guns and punishes Professor Hawkins in a suitably substantive manner, it will be attacked by politically correct, pitchfork-brandishing mobs screaming bloody murder about its bigotry, hatred, and intolerance. If it does not, it will fulfill Bible prophecy by becoming an active participant in the tsunami of apostasy that the Bible says would characterize the last days.
Hawkins insists she has done nothing inappropriate, and sees no reason for her to be punished or to resign, commenting that...
"I have integrity. If I didn't, I would leave. I'm a Christian—there's nothing else to explain."
Uhm, excuse me, Professor Hawkins, but actually there is something to explain, and it is this:
OK, so you have integrity. Fine. I'll give you that one free of charge. But you also say you are a Christian. OK, that means the following are true:
1. You have responded to the conviction of the Holy Spirit and realized you are a sinner separated from a holy God.
2. You have asked God to forgive your sin based on the fact that His one and only Son Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, died on a cross in order to satisfy His perfect justice on your behalf so you could be spiritually reconciled to Him.
3. You believe that as a result of Jesus Christ's resurrection from the dead, you will live for eternity in God's presence.
The Bible teaches these points clearly and emphatically, so as a Christian this is the God you worship. (Forgive me for spelling it out in such grinding detail, but under the circumstances I felt it was warranted.)
Now, you claim this God you worship as a born-again believer in the gospel of His Son Jesus Christ is the same god that Muslims worship. If I've got this straight so far, then you do indeed have something to explain, Professor Hawkins.
The Qur'an teaches clearly and emphatically that Allah has no son. Says it in black and white. It also states that Jesus was merely a prophet, a messenger of Allah. Nothing more—and certainly not the so-called "Son of God" you claim to believe died to pay the penalty for your sin. This "Son of God" character does not exist according to the Qur'an.
You need to explain how you reconcile this discrepancy. We'll be waiting.
Follow along closely, Professor Hawkins, because assuming you possess the integrity you mentioned and your mental faculties are not impaired in any obvious way, there are only three logical possibilities:
1. You do understand what the Bible teaches, but don't understand what the Qur'an teaches.
2. You don't understand what the Bible teaches, but do understand what the Qur'an teaches.
3. You don't understand what either one teaches.
And no matter which is true, you clearly have no business making such ignorant theological statements.
Oh, and you also lied every time you affirmed Wheaton College's statement of faith and so have no legitimate reason to remain on their faculty.
By the way, this material will be on the test.
1/11/2016 — From the "Wake-Up Call" Department...
According to an article in the Jerusalem Post, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is a man with a mission: he is trying to rally support from moderate Arab nations to thwart U.S. President Barack Obama's effort to become the next Secretary-General of the United Nations.
S-c-r-e-e-e-e-e-c-h... Whoa, major headrush—I'm sorry, I must have been hallucinating. It sounded like you just said Barack Obama wanted to become Secretary-General of the UN!
No hallucinations. This is as real as it gets. Although not widely known until recently, apparently President Barack Obama is talking to people about succeeding South Korea's Ban Ki-moon as the Secretary-General of the United Nations when Ban's term expires on December 31, 2016 (three weeks before Obama officially leaves office). And to anyone who is knowledgeable about Bible prophecy, this feels like a punch in the gut.
If he is successful (and hey, he sweet-talked his way into the presidency), then this is the equivalent of an eschatological two-minute warning. A prophetic wake-up call.
Think of it: Barack "Let's create a global government and then all gang up on Israel" Obama, serving as Secretary-General of the United Nations. I mean, why don't we just hit fast forward on the one-world government program. And almost as if on cue, Pope Francis came out recently with a high-profile call for people of all religions to join hands and sing "Kumbaya," because we're all God's children didn't ya know, whether we call Him God, Yahweh, Allah, Buddha, or the Flying Spaghetti Monster. (FYI: We're not all God's children according to Gal. 3:26.)
I feel compelled to point out, however, that I am still not convinced that Barack Obama will turn out to be the Antichrist. I know it's a popular notion (and news of his wanting to take the reins of the UN will serve to fan the flames), but I still see some scriptural difficulties with it. Not impossibilities, just difficulties that require a level of speculation that is beyond my comfort level. Of course, I could be wrong. I'm not going to be dogmatic about it, since I know there are a number of highly competent Bible prophecy teachers who feel differently.
My real concern is that I can't think of any other world leader who would be more motivated to push and shove the world in the direction of a global government suitable for the reign of the Antichrist when he does come on the scene—and to push Israel into the corner that it will find itself in during his reign. That's what we have to look forward to if Obama takes over the leadership of the United Nations. And I would consider that the best-case scenario. I'll spare you the worst case.
But no matter how you look at it, this is a wake-up call for the Church. It's about time for us to rise and shine.
And I do mean rise.
1/18/2016 — From the "Get Out and Stay Out" Department...
I almost laughed when I read this article. Almost.
I suppose I should have known it would come to this sooner or later. According to an article at Fox News, someone wants to sue the United States government for printing "In God We Trust" on U.S. currency.
Michael Newdow, an attorney from Sacramento, California, is suing the government on behalf of a group of atheists who claim the phrase "In God We Trust" violates the separation of church and state. One of the atheists named in the suit claims that his atheism is being "substantially burdened because he is forced to bear on his person a religious statement that causes him to sense his government legitimizing, promoting and reinforcing negative and injurious attitudes not only against Atheists in general, but against him personally."
Substantially burdened. Seriously.
Ordinarily, I would assume that such a laughably frivolous lawsuit would go nowhere fast, and amounted to little more than a joke or a publicity stunt of some kind. But these days, I'm not so sure.
After all, the pinnacle of sexual perversion (homosexual "marriage") is now the law of the land, so who knows.
By the way, since many don't seem to understand what "separation of church and state" actually means, here it is straight from the horses mouth:
"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..."
OK, let's think this through, shall we?
Q. By printing "In God We Trust" on U.S. currency, is anyone making a law respecting an establishment of religion?
Q. By printing "In God We Trust" on U.S. currency, is anyone prohibiting the free exercise of any religion?
A. Same answer.
And more to the point:
Q. By trying to get "In God We Trust" removed from U.S. currency, are we doing our utmost to purge every trace of God from American society?
Q. Will God give us what we want?
A. Same answer.
1/25/2016 — From the "Look on the Bright Side" Department...
Hey, all you doom-and-gloomers out there, cheer up! There's reason for hope. Things are getting better, didn't ya know.
At least according to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry they are. In comments he made at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland a few days ago, Kerry acknowledged that things such as "narrow tribalism," "aggressive nationalism," and "violent extremists" were real threats, but emphasized that the world should seize "a powerful sense of confidence in what we can achieve."
Kerry sounded downright optimistic in the face of a world that appears to be spinning more out of control with each passing day. And once again, the rose-colored glasses were firmly in place in his reference to "violent extremists."
Uh, Secretary Kerry, they're not Baptist extremists. They're not Buddhist extremists.
They're Islamic extremists.
Mr. Kerry went on to add that...
"We are not the prisoners of a predetermined future. [...] Change is occurring in our world for the better and it is occurring faster, moving faster than ever before.”
That's right, Secretary Kerry, we are not "prisoners of a predetermined future." But the world is temporarily a prisoner of the god of this world, who is determined to try to maintain control of it by egging the nations of the world on in their quest to annihilate Israel. Israel is the key to Jesus' return to defeat Satan and establish His kingdom, and Satan believes he can succeed in his effort to destroy the Jewish nation.
What is pre-determined, however, is the fact that he won't. He won't succeed in destroying God's people, and Jesus will return to defeat him and He will establish His kingdom.
So, in a sense, the end is pre-determined: Jesus wins, Satan loses. The rest is just the details of how we get there. And by the way, keep one thing in mind: the prophets of the Bible didn't predict the future in the usual sense, and they certainly didn't determine it. God simply showed them what was going to happen, and they just wrote down what He showed them.
Secretary Kerry is also right about the fact that change is occurring in the world faster than ever before, but to say it's changing for the better is...well, I don't know any other way to say it: it's naive to the point of being delusional. Whether it knows it or not, likes it or not, or believes it or not, the world is on a collision course with Bible prophecy. And it's not going to be pretty.
So, one might be inclined ask:
Look on the bright side?! Is there even a bright side to look on?!
9For God didn't appoint us to wrath, but to the obtaining of salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.
(1 Thessalonians 5:9)
So...look on the bright side.
2/1/2016 — From the "Sleep Tight" Department...
Earlier this month, the Obama administration ordered the U.S. trade community to label products made in the West Bank to clearly reflect the fact that they are not "made in Israel."
For the record, this is exactly the sort of anti-Semitic policy that the EU has been promoting in their efforts to punish Israel and kowtow to the Palestinian demand for a state formed on land carved out of Israel.
Huh. Now that's odd, because as recently as November a State Department spokesman stated that such labeling would be "a step on the way to a boycott" and reassuringly added that the Obama administration would be against the boycotting of Israeli goods. But now they're labeling products.
I'm confused...do we support Israel or don't we?
I'm kidding. We obviously don't...which is why I am mystified by the Obama administration's need for duplicity. Why can't Obama just come out and say it openly and unequivocally:
"We hate Israel, and wish to jump on the BDS bandwagon along with the rest of the world and see the Jewish state punished, economically isolated, weakened, delegitimized, and ultimately ravaged and destroyed by the snarling wolves that surround it."
What's so hard about that? One sentence would clear up all the confusion and double talk. We would know with absolute clarity where the Obama administration really stands.
There I go again with the kidding. We already know.
Omri Ceren, one of the managing directors at The Israeli Project, a group that promotes stronger ties between the United States and Israel, summed it up rather succinctly:
"This is an administration that slaps labels on Jewish goods on a Saturday and has the president give a Holocaust Remembrance speech the next Wednesday.
"It's worse than incoherent. It needlessly alienates Israel at a time when the Middle East is falling apart and U.S. allies are looking for signals about whose side the administration is on."
Whose side the administration is on?
Like I said: we already know.
So, as God said to Abraham and his descendants:
3I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you.
Sleep tight, Mr. Obama.
2/8/2016 — From the "If the Shoe Fits" Department...
I love reading about advances in genetic research, especially as they reveal the inner workings of DNA. In fact, I find it immensely entertaining because it exposes for all to see the utter foolishness of the theory of evolution.
For the record, the theory of evolution is a pseudo-scientific absurdity that is solely supported by known and deliberate lies and obfuscation. And when I read articles like this, it just brightens my day because it thunderingly confirms the fact that the above statement is true.
According to a recent study, researchers at Cambridge University have discovered that DNA is affected by modifications at a level of complexity that is many orders of magnitude greater than what was previously believed (and the previously known degree of complexity was already overwhelming). I won't attempt to go into detail here (if you're interested, follow the link to the article), but geneticist Dr. Jeffrey Tomkins said this discovery is significant because:
"...the language systems in the genome continue to reveal nothing but unimaginable complexity, [which is clearly in] complete contradiction to evolutionary predictions. [...]
"As scientific discovery advances in the field of genomics, the genome and its diversity of elaborate interlocking languages speaks of vast levels of intelligent bio-engineering, not purposeless random evolution."
I almost feel sorry for evolutionary biologists like the world-renowned God hater Richard Dawkins (oops, I mean "God disbeliever"...who just happens to hate the God he doesn't believe in). As real science marches on, it keeps getting tougher and tougher for them to spin adequate webs of pseudo-scientific mumbo jumbo to give the theory of evolution an ever thinning veneer of plausibility.
The worst part, of course, is that individuals like Richard Dawkins are influencing millions of people to reject a God who loves them and walk away feeling intellectually superior in the process. Naturally, once people have latched onto something that makes them feel smarter than most others, it's extraordinarily difficult for them to admit they are wrong. And few ever do.
The Bible, however, gives us the real reason why people become so firmly entrenched in modes of thinking that reject God:
18For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19because that which is known of God is revealed in them, for God revealed it to them. 20For the invisible things of him since the creation of the world are clearly seen, being perceived through the things that are made, even his everlasting power and divinity; that they may be without excuse. 21Because, knowing God, they didn't glorify him as God, neither gave thanks, but became vain in their reasoning, and their senseless heart was darkened. 22Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.
In other words, God has revealed His existence—His power and divine nature—in the universe He created. Thus, when men refuse to so much as acknowledge God as Creator, their reasoning becomes foolishly pointless and futile, and their hearts become bereft of wisdom and understanding.
Note to Richard Dawkins and all God-hating evolutionists:
If the shoe fits...
2/15/2016 — From the "What a Coincidence" Department...
United States Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia passed away over the weekend, and a battle is already brewing over how and when he will be replaced. Scalia, who was appointed by Ronald Reagan in 1986, was a powerful conservative voice on the nine-member Supreme Court, which had stood at a 5–4 majority for conservatives before Scalia's death.
Most Republicans, of course, are vainly hoping to pressure a lame-duck Obama into letting the next president fill the vacancy; however, I think they are dreaming. What is far more likely is that within minutes of hearing of Scalia's death, Obama was on the phone with one of his liberal, pro-LGBT, pro-abortion, anti-Israel cronies, telling them to update their résumé and come to Washington (assuming they weren't already in Washington). What hasn't been talked much about, however, is the fact that Scalia apparently passed away at the most opportune moment possible for the president.
The Constitution gives the president the power to fill such vacancies (i.e., make recess appointments) in a situation in which both the House and Senate have both agreed to adjourn for a period longer than three days. According to my understanding, that is the only parliamentary situation in which a president can legally make a recess appointment that cannot be overturned or challenged. The last time a president made such a recess appointment under these parliamentary circumstances was Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956.
On Thursday, February 11, the Senate met and voted to adjourn until Monday, February 22 for Presidents Day. On Friday, February 12, the House of Representatives similarly voted to adjourn until Tuesday, February 23. That creates a one-week window of opportunity should the president decide to make a recess appointment of some sort.
Of course, nobody anticipated the death of a Supreme Court justice.
And then, lo and behold, on Saturday, February 13, Obama's archnemesis on the Supreme Court suddenly dies in his sleep of natural causes at the age of 79...although he was in good health and not reportedly ill (he was on a hunting trip in Texas).
President Obama has reportedly said that although he will nominate someone to fill the vacancy, he will wait until Congress is back in session. Well, we'll see.
This is one of those rare moments when I can't even bring myself to say what I am thinking in my heart of hearts. For the good of our country, I pray I am so totally wrong. Lord, please let this just be my inner conspiracy theorist getting the best of me.
2/22/2016 — From the "Call Me Mr. Neutral" Department...
In an interview on Fox News, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump addressed the issue of negotiating peace between Israel and the Palestinians. According to an article in the Jerusalem Post, Trump has no intention of taking sides:
"Let me be sort of be a neutral guy."
A neutral guy. I assume that means "neutral" as in giving the positions and claims of both Israel and the Palestinians equal weight and moral equivalence. I assume it means treating them as equals, both entitled to their fair share of the land, and making sure the poor, oppressed Palestinians get a fair shot at getting theirs. In a totally neutral manner, of course.
At the same time, Trump blasted President Obama as being "the worst thing that's ever happened to Israel."
Well, at least he got that part right. The problem is that what Trump is suggesting is just as bad as anything President Obama has ever done (which is no small feat). The problem with this approach is that Israel and the Palestinians cannot be placed on an equal moral footing in any conceivable way when it comes to the so-called two-state solution. Or any other way, for that matter.
1. The land belongs to Israel, the Jewish nation. And always will.
2. The "Palestinians" are a ragtag assortment of Arab refugees that have never had any legitimate historical claim to the land of Israel whatsoever. And never will.
God gave the land of Israel to Abraham, the father of the Jewish race, roughly four thousand years ago. The Palestinians are primarily Jordanian and Syrian refugees, and the popular narrative they are presenting to the world with the help of the liberal mainstream media is a fiction created in the twentieth century and popularized by Yassar Arafat (an Egyptian) starting in the 1960s. This Palestinian narrative was created for one simple purpose: to evoke sympathy from the world and as a result turn the world against Israel so they will destroy them on their behalf, and give them their land when they are done.
And every time Israel foolishly relinquishes the smallest bit of their land to appease them, that land immediately becomes a launching pad for missiles aimed at Israel.
So much for moral equivalence. Sorry, Mr. Trump, but there is only one legitimate side to this issue. Not two.
And that's why "neutral" isn't going to cut it.
2/29/2016 — From the "Calling Evil Good" Department...
As everyone knows, abortion has long been a controversial issue in America. People who support abortion talk about being "pro-choice," and about how women should have control over their own bodies. People who are against abortion talk about being "pro-life," and about how abortion is the murder of an unborn baby (who has no choice).
It goes without saying that anyone who claims to be a Christian and actually supports abortion would have an extraordinarily difficult time justifying their position—and no matter how they attempted to do so, it would be unthinkable for them to try to use the Bible to do it.
Which is why the following news item elicited a heavier than usual sigh.
(Correction: This person doesn't just support abortion—they perform abortions.)
Dr. Willie Parker, an abortionist from Chicago, spoke recently at a fundraising event for abortion rights and cited his Christian faith and the Bible as a defense for his actions. Dr. Parker categorized abortion as a form of "health care," and drew inspiration from the Parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25–37) to justify performing this particular form of "health care" on pregnant women who are "in need."
In need of...having their unborn babies killed and their tiny bodies cut up so their organs can be illegally sold for a tidy profit, that is.
Of course, the Parable of the Good Samaritan is about helping those in need, and in so doing demonstrating God's love in a fallen world as the salt and light God called us to be. But since when is taking an innocent life—something God loathes—a way to demonstrate God's love?
16There are six things which Yahweh hates; yes, seven which are an abomination to him: 17haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood; 18a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are swift in running to mischief, 19a false witness who utters lies, and he who sows discord among brothers.
(Proverbs 6:16–19 / emphasis added)
Hands that shed innocent blood. And an unborn child is as innocent as they come.
Oh, and just in case you were wondering what the Bible says about the key issue of whether an unborn child is a living being or not, I'll let God's Word speak for itself:
13For you formed my inmost being. You knit me together in my mother's womb. 14I will give thanks to you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful. My soul knows that very well. 15My frame wasn't hidden from you, when I was made in secret, woven together in the depths of the earth. 16Your eyes saw my body. In your book they were all written, the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there were none of them.
These and other verses spell it out as clearly as it needs to be spelled out:
Human life begins at conception, and God knows our entire lives before we're even conceived.
And as for people like Dr. Parker:
20Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
(Isaiah 5:20 / emphasis added)
When it comes to calling evil good, using a parable from the Bible about loving your neighbor and using it to justify murdering the unborn child in your neighbor's womb is about the most egregious example I have ever seen.
And with luck, ever will see.
3/7/2016 — From the "Becoming Fools" Department...
On June 26, 2015, the United States Supreme Court voted to make homosexual marriage legal throughout the entire United States, making something the Bible calls an abomination the law of the land. It makes a mockery of God's laws and designs, and pokes an impudent finger in the eye of God Himself.
Many Christians felt the trampling underfoot of God and His Word couldn't get any worse. They thought this was the pinnacle of man's thumbing his nose at God and everything He represents.
They thought the world couldn't stoop any lower.
They were wrong.
As if homosexual "marriage" wasn't bad enough, New Zealand now officially recognizes marriages performed in the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
Founded in Kansas in 2005, this whimsical, tongue-in-cheek "religion" worships the Flying Spaghetti Monster and goes by the name of Pastafarianism, and primarily attracts atheists with a weird sense of humor. The core belief of the Pastafarians is that it makes just as much sense to worship an imaginary creature than the God of the Bible, and they use an image depicting a hovering mass of spaghetti and meatballs to represent their deity.
And now, at least in New Zealand, they can legally marry people.
If you think this is foolish, you're in good company:
18For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19because that which is known of God is revealed in them, for God revealed it to them. 20For the invisible things of him since the creation of the world are clearly seen, being perceived through the things that are made, even his everlasting power and divinity; that they may be without excuse. 21Because, knowing God, they didn't glorify him as God, neither gave thanks, but became vain in their reasoning, and their senseless heart was darkened. 22Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23and traded the glory of the incorruptible God for the likeness of an image of corruptible man, and of birds, and four-footed animals, and creeping things.
(Romans 1:18–23 / emphasis added)
People who steadfastly refuse to acknowledge the overwhelming evidence for God in His creation and refuse to give Him glory as the Creator become vain in their thinking, their hearts become darkened, and they imagine themselves to be wise but become fools.
Eventually, they end up worshiping the creation itself—images of men and animals. Now that's foolish.
But then...then they imagine that spaghetti and meatballs can sanctify the joining of two people in holy matrimony.
3/14/2016 — From the "Last Straw" Department...
Here's a tip: Whenever the entire country is mesmerized by blanket media coverage of some ongoing event (such as the three-ring circus that American politics has become), a little alarm should go off in your spirit that makes you pause and ask "OK, what's going on behind the scenes that the world is being distracted from?"
The answers might surprise you.
President Obama and other administration officials have been coyly downplaying it, but it appears that Obama has one last ace up his Mideast peace sleeve. According to an article in the Times of Israel, it is becoming a rather poorly kept secret that Obama is planning a last-gasp effort at making progress toward a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians before leaving office.
The particulars of the plan sound like the usual suspects: back to the pre-1967 borders with land swaps, no more construction on "occupied land," East Jerusalem for a Palestinian capital, recognition of Israel as the Jewish state, yada yada yada. Oh, but there might be one small difference:
This plan may be backed by the United Nations Security Council.
Remember them? This the body that would consistently try to pass resolutions critical or damaging to Israel in the past, only to have them vetoed by the United States. Back when we supported Israel, that is.
But alas, those days are a fond memory. It is rumored that Obama may initiate this effort when he addresses the UN for the last time as President of the United States this fall (a few weeks before a highly contentious presidential election that will be captivating the attention of every American), and as a Security Council resolution (one that is not vetoed by the U.S., that is), it would have teeth.
OK, straight up—part of me wants to jump up and down on the bed and chant "TREA-TY...TREA-TY...TREA-TY." This is potentially huge. Emphasis on the word "potentially."
The other part of me says "Take a chill pill, Bible boy—been there, done that. Could be more of the same old same old. Don't go off the deep end like the last time and the time before that."
It's just that Daniel 9:27 says a seven-year treaty will be "strengthened" or "confirmed" to kick off the Tribulation, which suggests that it is an agreement that has already been drafted and signed. It will evidently also divide Israel, something which really torques God off:
2I will gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat; and I will execute judgment on them there for my people, and for my heritage, Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations. They have divided my land.
(Joel 3:2 / emphasis added)
I believe Joel is prophesying about the Sheep and Goat Judgment of Matthew 25:31–46, which comes on the heels of the Second Coming. Here, we are told one of the key items that triggers God's judgment: They have divided my land.
Oh yeah, Israel is God's land.
And apparently dividing it is the last straw for God.
3/21/2016 — From the "Bringing in the Sheaves" Department...
I've studied Bible prophecy for a number of years, and I pay a great deal of attention to what is happening in the world as it relates to its fulfillment. I see prophetic trends—social, geopolitical, and spiritual—developing and coming together in a grand panorama just as outlined in Scripture, and it allows me to state with a high degree of confidence that we can be no more than a handful of years away from the beginning of the Tribulation (and so even closer to the Rapture).
It's stories like this, however, that snap me awake and fill me with a sense of urgency in looking for the Lord's return.
Syria, a country absolutely devastated by five years of brutal, bloody civil war, choking under the grip of barbaric Islamic terrorist group ISIS, and being trampled by foreign powers who wish to influence the outcome, is seeing something unusual occur:
People are getting saved. Lots of 'em.
According to Pastor Edward Awabdeh, leader of the Alliance Church in Damascus, the Church in Syria is more active than it has ever been in history:
"The Lord is really touching hearts at this time of crisis. People are learning how to come humbly to Him, and we thank God. [...]
"By his grace these things are happening. It is bringing people back to the reality of needing to rely on the Lord."
And although I am slightly hesitant to trumpet such reports too enthusiastically because they are notoriously hard to confirm, detailed reports from credible individuals in the Middle East continue to come in from Syria and other Islamic countries of Muslim people coming to faith in Christ as a direct result of visions.
Scores of people in war-torn areas under Islamic control in the Middle East are having visions of Jesus. In many cases, the Lord tells them who He is and the details of how and when someone will come to tell them more about Him. And then someone comes to tell them more about Him.
Before Syria's civil war started in 2011, Syria had a Christian population of roughly 1.7 to 1.8 million. It was reported in October 2015 that approximately 40 percent had fled the country. Yet these small Syrian churches are overflowing with new believers, and meetings are held nearly every day.
Could it be that Jesus is rounding up the last few members of His body? Is it possible that these are among the final converts to round out the Church's number? Like the old hymn "Bringing in the Sheaves," are these Muslim converts the last of the sheaves to be brought in?
I don't know. But I do know one thing: it has the little prophetic hairs on the back of my neck standing straight up.
3/28/2016 — From the "One Sharp Cookie" Department...
President Obama continues to moan and groan about how he'll never be able to make peace in the Middle East...poor guy, he'll have to leave office with no shiny gold star on his foreign policy report card. But he does have a creative excuse to offer for his failure, however:
It's all Israel's fault.
Oh wait, sorry...that's not the the new excuse, that's the old tried-and-true one. Here's the real new excuse:
Israel is just too darn successful.
Oh yes, those successful Jewish devils. Israel's economic success has been the major impediment to President Obama's swell peace plans from the outset, didn't ya know. I'm sorry—you look confused. Let me spell it out for you:
The fact that Israel is one of the most prosperous nations in the Middle East has allowed it to negotiate from a position of strength, and so has made it less willing to make concessions to the poor, oppressed Palestinians.
Duh...isn't it obvious? How could you miss that? Our intrepid president is sharp enough to see that if the world would just kick Israel around a bit and damage their economy with BDS tactics and isolate Israel economically, that would soften them up and make them more willing to give away more land to their sworn enemies so said enemies could set up more missile launching pads.
Not many people saw that...luckily Barack Obama is one sharp cookie.
Sharp enough, that is, to sandbag in preparation for one last stab at a UN Security Council resolution that will attempt to jam a two-state agreement down Israel's throat later this fall before he leaves office.
4/4/2016 — From the "Fighting Back" Department...
As the LGBT community continues to strong-arm American society into capitulating to its demands to have the right to force their perversion on whomever they choose, I have to admit I found the following news item rather refreshing.
Somebody is fighting back.
Last Wednesday, the House and Senate of the State of Mississippi passed House Bill 1523, one fundamental point of which is that businesses, public employees, etc. cannot be forced to provide services for homosexual couples. Specifically, it says that they cannot be punished for denying services based on their belief that marriage is only validly defined as being between a man and a woman.
It is called the Religious Liberty Accommodations Act, and it is expected to become law in the State of Mississippi. Republican State Senator Jenifer Branning characterized it this way:
"Ministers, florists, photographers, people along those lines—this bill would allow them to refuse to provide marriage-related business services without fear of government discrimination. [...]
"It takes no rights away from anyone. It gives protection to those in the state who cannot in a good conscience provide services for a same-sex marriage."
And right on cue, jerk goes the knee.
Pro-LGBT critics are wailing and gnashing their teeth, decrying the bill as the worst thing that has ever happened to religious freedom. Many are (somehow) connecting the bill to the scourge of racial segregation that plagued Mississippi until the 1960s brought the Civil Rights Movement. One such critic is Erik Fleming, director of advocacy and policy for the Mississippi branch of the ACLU:
"It is very broad and very dangerous. It basically sanctions religious discrimination. [...]
"It is reminiscent of what happened 50 or 60 years ago in this same state. People say that it is just religious, but there were people who had a religious belief that black and white people should be segregated, and you're opening that Pandora's box again."
OK, so let me get this straight: believing that homosexual marriage is wrong is morally equivalent to believing that racial segregation is right.
Although I have nothing to say in response to something that stupid, I do have something to say in response to the efforts of the State of Mississippi (my home for two years in the late 1970s) to counter the tactics of the gay mafia:
May God bless the great State of Mississippi.
Thank you for fighting back!
4/11/2016 — From the "Check Your Sources" Department...
A number of Bible prophecy teachers are scrambling to remove the egg from their faces these days over something that has apparently been overblown and overhyped.
And inaccurately reported.
It had been reported in recent months that after Russian-backed Syrian forces recaptured the Syrian city of Palmyra from ISIS, the plan was to make two full-sized replicas of the gate of Palmyra's Temple of Baal and unveil them in London and New York on April 19.
Baal, in case you're not familiar, was one of the chief pagan gods of the Middle East and one that Israel repeatedly committed spiritual harlotry with when they turned away from the living God who had delivered them from Egypt. So, reports of erecting replicas of the gate of the Temple of Baal in New York and London was heralded by many respected prophecy teachers as the equivalent of rolling out the red carpet for the Antichrist. Even the date bears significance, since April 19 is apparently the first day of a 13-day period known as the Blood Sacrifice to the Beast. April 19 is also the feast of Moloch, another key pagan god of the Old Testament...at least according to the author of the linked article.
Except that wasn't the plan. Or the plan was changed. Or something. It was recently revealed that rather than the gate of the Temple of Baal, it is a different gate that is being prepared: the Arch of Triumph, an 1800-year-old relic that was destroyed by ISIS in 2015. It is being reproduced using cutting-edge 3-D imaging and printing techniques, and will only be erected in Trafalgar Square in London, not New York.
And it apparently has nothing to do with Baal, the Antichrist, or anything else.
Sorry, Baal...maybe next time.
The facts behind the story with all its twists and turns are murky, but if the intent was to make a lot of Bible prophecy teachers look like wild-eyed, conspiracy theorist nutjobs, the plan largely succeeded.
That whirring sound you hear is the sound of backpedaling by a lot of folks who got taken in by the story and made too much of it.
If there's a moral to the story anywhere in sight, it may just be "Let's be careful out there."
And check your sources.
16Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.
4/18/2016 — From the "Satan's Tell" Department...
Over the last few years, I have heard numerous reports of Muslims in the Middle East coming to faith in Christ as a result of visions they have received. Typically, they say the Lord appears to them in a vision, tells them who He is, and tells them details of how someone will come to them shortly to tell them more about Him. Then someone shows up in precisely the manner Jesus told them and shares the gospel with them.
In case you're wondering about the validity of such visions, this is not all that terribly different from the kinds of things that happened with the apostle Paul:
10Now there was a certain disciple at Damascus named Ananias. The Lord said to him in a vision, "Ananias!" He said, "Behold, it's me, Lord." 11The Lord said to him, "Arise, and go to the street which is called Straight, and inquire in the house of Judah for one named Saul, a man of Tarsus. For behold, he is praying, 12and in a vision he has seen a man named Ananias coming in, and laying his hands on him, that he might receive his sight."
Well, Satan has an inferior counterfeit for everything God does, so I can't say the following report really shocked me all that much.
A 22-year-old Muslim woman named Shatila Abu Iyadh living in the Israeli town of Kfar Qassem set out to a local industrial park one afternoon a couple of weeks ago. When she arrived at the park, she looked around and singled out 30-year-old mother of three Reut Weitzman.
Then she pulled a knife out of her bag and tried to kill her.
Fortunately, Mrs. Weitzman resisted and received only a flesh wound in her arm. What makes this story interesting, however, is the reason this young Muslim woman gave for the attack:
"Muhammed told me to do it."
According to Shatila Iyadh, the prophet Muhammed appeared to her in a dream and told her to kill Jews. (Luckily her earlier attempts at making a bomb failed, according to the article.)
They say in poker that every player has a tell, or some gesture or mannerism that is a clue to what kind of hand that player is holding or what strategy he is attempting to employ. Skilled players will observe someone carefully during the course of a game until they spot their tell, and then use that knowledge to their advantage. Scratching one's head. Rubbing one's nose. Adjusting one's glasses. Fiddling with the cards in a certain way. Or a thousand other little unconscious things a player might do when he's betting the farm with a handful of nothing.
Well, apparently Satan would make a lousy poker player, because he has a tell a mile wide. Satan's tell is so clear and so distinct that no one with an ounce of discernment could possibly miss it.
He hates Jews with a venomous, murderous passion.
Keep that in mind the next time you hear someone teaching biblical doctrine that attempts to rob the Jews of God's promises to them or demote them to an inferior position (or no position) in God's plan.
Or when politicians talk about enforcing a two-state solution.
4/25/2016 — From the "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On" Department...
As I'm sure you know, there has been a rash of strong earthquakes in recent days, with seven major quakes striking in a 96-hour period. Of course, when big earthquakes occur many people start chattering about the end times and many Christians start referring to verses like the following:
7For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; and there will be famines, plagues, and earthquakes in various places.
(Matthew 24:7 / emphasis added)
Well, Jews are no different, and according to an article at Breaking Israel News, Rabbi Yitzhak Batzri, a kabbalist from Jerusalem, believes these recent quakes are part of what Jews refer to as the "messianic process":
"King David wrote, 'Who looketh on the earth, and it trembleth; He toucheth the mountains, and they smoke' (Psalm 104:32) to describe what will happen in the End of Days before the final redemption. There will be an earthquake in Israel, but it will be beneficial, opening up the Temple Mount, bringing forth living waters, purifying the city to receive the Messiah."
In fact, both the Old and New Testaments speak of massive eathquakes leading up to the arrival of the Messiah:
4His feet will stand in that day on the Mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east; and the Mount of Olives will be split in two, from east to west, making a very great valley. Half of the mountain will move toward the north, and half of it toward the south.
This is the Second Coming. The book of Revelation also records numerous powerful earthquakes, including one described as the biggest ever coming at the seventh and final bowl judgment, which concludes God's wrath during the Great Tribulation:
17The seventh poured out his bowl into the air. A loud voice came forth out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, "It is done!" 18There were lightnings, sounds, and thunders; and there was a great earthquake, such as was not since there were men on the earth, so great an earthquake, so mighty.
Both Jews and Christians believe these things will precede the return of the Messiah—at least we can agree on that. And they will, but just not quite the way the Jews think. They are anticipating the arrival of a man. But the Bible says we should be anticipating the arrival of God in the form of a man.
Big difference. But however you look at it, these recent earthquakes are just a sneak preview. During the Tribulation, there's gonna be a whole lotta shakin' goin' on.
5/2/2016 — From the "Bow or Burn" Department...
There is a law in the United States referred to as Title IX, and it reads as follow:
"No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance."
In 2014, President Barack "Anything Goes" Obama interpreted the phrase "on the basis of sex" to include transgender discrimination, and suddenly every college and university in America was expected to bow to the demands of the gay mafia in order to keep the flow of federal money from being shut off.
But a few aren't bowing.
As of April 1, a total of 232 institutions had applied for an exemption to Title IX, exemptions which are allowed on the following basis:
"Title IX does not apply to an educational institution that is controlled by a religious organization to the extent that application of Title IX would be inconsistent with the religious tenets of the organization."
This clearly stated proviso, however, which is ostensibly intended to (gulp) defend religious freedom, is not enough for the gay mafia. Oh no. In a move typical of the gay mafia's tactics, a gay rights group euphemistically called the Human Rights Campaign demanded the list of 232 institutions to be published as a so-called "Shame List" (even though it is readily available for viewing with a simple Freedom of Information Act request). The HRC offered this in defense of their actions:
"Many LGBT students may find themselves enrolled at schools that are granted the legal right to discriminate against them partway through their degree program. Students should have the opportunity to make determinations about school attendance based on full information regarding a university's ability to legally discriminate against the student."
In other words, if a college or university takes a stand for biblical morality on the basis of God's Word, it's tantamount to "legal discrimination" that warrants being "named and shamed."
By the way, the next time you go outside, you may notice a huge object in the distance glinting in the sun. You may be blinded by it and so may not be able to make out what it is, but I can tell you now:
It's a golden statue, and it won't be long before you will be required to bow before it.
That Shame List should be called the Daniel 3 List in honor of the three Hebrew boys who refused to bow before King Nebuchadnezzar's golden image, and instead gave the king the following terse reply:
16Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer you in this matter. 17If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king. 18But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods, nor worship the golden image which you have set up.
(Daniel 3:16–18 AKJV)
What will you do when the call comes to bow?
5/9/2016 — From the "God Knows" Department...
Well, I guess Donald Trump may as well get on his private jet and fly back to New York and head for good ol' Trump Tower, because this commander-in-chief thing is so over. Ain't gonna happen. Hillary Clinton is going to be the next president, and there's nothing Trump can do about it. After all...
It's in the Bible, didn't ya know.
At least according to a Haredi scholar who brought it to the attention of Kikar HaShabbat, a Hebrew-language Israeli newspaper serving the ultra-Orthodox community.
The ultra-Orthodox scholar used equidistant letter spacing (ELS) techniques to track down a line in the Tanach that reportedly reads:
"Hillary Ne'siah" (Hillary president).
If you ask me, this tops Glenn Beck's recent "word from the Lord" that Ted Cruz was anointed by God for this time and would be the next president, a prophetic bombshell that was announced shortly before Cruz's surprise withdrawal from the campaign.
Not to mention other folks with "words from the Lord" that Donald Trump was going to Make America Great Again With God's Help, and had God's anointing to do just that.
OK, let me give it to you straight to save you some time:
Nobody has a "word from the Lord" about who is going to win the presidential election this November, so don't bother listening to these poor, deluded individuals.
I can't say it any more plainly.
Yes, God is still on the throne and is still in control, and the following Scripture has not been revoked:
21He changes the times and the seasons; he removes kings, and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise, and knowledge to those who have understanding.
(Daniel 2:21 / emphasis added)
The next occupant of the Oval Office, whoever he or she may be, is part of God's sovereign plan—that much I know. And God's plan will be carried out. I know that, too.
So God knows we have no business listening to a bunch of deluded blowhards who falsely prophecy in His name, much less some ultra-Orthodox Torah wonk who is immersed in what amounts to little more than divination for inside info on who the next president will be.
5/16/2016 — From the "Intolerance Will Not Be Tolerated" Department...
A few days ago, President Obama ordered all public schools in America to base their rules concerning the usage of bathrooms and locker rooms on "gender identity" rather than on actual gender—and it goes without saying that failure to comply could result in lawsuits and the withholding of much needed federal funds.
Translation: If a 17-year-old boy in your local high school claims that he "feels like a girl," he will have the legal right to shower and change clothes with your 17-year-old daughter.
After all, anything less would be discrimination.
This reprehensible absurdity, as if you needed to be told, is a move being advertised as an effort to eliminate discrimination against transgenders (cue the violins).
Lucky us. How fortunate we are as Americans to have a president whose superior knowledge of the facts is such that he has the wisdom to dispense with all that messy, time-wasting public debate and discussion with people who see things differently. What country wouldn't be proud to have a president with such a bold, forthright style of leadership:
Obey, or you will be punished.
As our country continues its descent into the maelstrom of moral relativism, it might be helpful to summarize how American liberalism works:
• We, as liberals, are intellectually superior and enlightened to the point where we perceive the True Path.
• You, as conservatives, are intellectually inferior and are so steeped in bigoted religious fairy tales that you can't see the True Path.
• Thus, we are fully justified in punishing you unless you capitulate to what we are smart enough to know is the True Path.
• Perhaps one day you will join us on the True Path...or you will be eliminated.
I've said it before and I'll say it again:
They're coming after us. Get ready.
And you might want to pull your daughter out of gym class.
5/23/2016 — From the "Storm Is Coming" Department...
A powerful storm is sweeping across the eastern Chinese province of Zhejiang, leaving a swath of devastation in its wake.
But it's not a typhoon. There is no strong wind or heavy rain. It's a storm of religious persecution.
Across the province, government authorities are engaged in a systematic campaign to tear down the crosses atop churches, and those protesting are losing their jobs, being fined, and being imprisoned on fabricated charges. And this is just the beginning.
The message from the Chinese government is crystal clear:
If you think you have religious freedom, think again.
One thing that is behind the campaign to tear down crosses on churches and generally persecute Christians is the fear that the spread of Christianity could undermine the Chinese government's authority, since many have been influenced to think that rights are God-given.
Christianity in China is increasingly being viewed by the government as a potentially dangerous foreign influence, and President Xi Jinping has warned that the Communist Party must "resolutely guard against overseas infiltrations via religious means," and that religions in China must Sinicize, or become more Chinese.
At the same time, what is happening in Zhejiang Province is antagonizing many middle-class Chinese throughout the country, many of whom are among the ranks of approximately 60 million Christians in the country. According to legal experts in China, what is happening in Xhejiang Province is a test—if it is considered to be successful, the persecution will almost certainly expand and accelerate.
The storm is coming, but...
11...Yahweh is with me as an awesome mighty one: therefore my persecutors shall stumble, and they shall not prevail; they shall be utterly disappointed, because they have not dealt wisely, even with an everlasting dishonor which shall never be forgotten.
I pray that God would strengthen and protect these precious brothers and sisters in the Lord, and that their witness would shine forth both as a testimony against a world held under the sway of the evil one, and as a testimony to our soon coming King.
5/30/2016 — From the "Messiah Express" Department...
So you thought the issues pertaining to Israel were all about geopolitics and BDS movements. Au contraire.
Apparently the time has come for Israel to show its spiritual side to the world.
Author and rabbinic scholar Rabbi Nachman Kahana, who is based in Jerusalem, has called for a public disputation, or a public debate on theological issues between Jews and non-Jews. According to Rabbi Kahana, "Israel's present political and financial interaction with the gentile world is a total distortion of why HaShem (God) has placed us in this world!"
Israel was chosen by God to be a light unto the nations (Isa. 49:6), and promised Abraham that through his seed all the families of the world would be blessed (Gen. 12:3).
Rabbi Kahana says this disputation among Jews, Catholics, and Muslims could create an "avalanche of interest" among Gentiles.
The world will ultimately embrace this satanically indwelt leader as their "savior."
Rabbi Kahana believes that such a public debate "could bring the world a step closer to geula (redemption)."
When the world accepts a charismatic world leader the Jews believe to be the Messiah, the Second Coming will be on the horizon—and that is what will finally bring the geula the Jews talk about.
Rabbi Kahana quotes Habakkuk 2:14 and says the Messiah will fill the earth with knowledge of the glory of God, and believes "the outcome of the debate would help move the world toward the messianic vision of Habakkuk and other prophets."
Rabbi Kahana, along with many other Jewish scholars, is right about many things, right down the line...BOOM BOOM BOOM. But Rabbi Kahana and other Jewish scholars believe that the Messiah will be a mortal man who will soon emerge on the scene and solve all the world's problems. And whoever this wonderful Messiah is, he sure as heck isn't that (possibly fictional) troublemaker named Yeshua that the Christians keep yammering about.
And that's where he's wrong.
I hope you see the general direction this is heading in. Make no mistake—this disputation is about the Messiah. Messiah fever is reaching fever pitch in Israel, and a host of the nation's most revered rabbis are shouting from the rooftops that the Messiah must come this year. The real purpose of this disputation is to effectively franchise the Messiah—to sell the world on the idea of ushering in this fantastic mystery leader.
After all, the argument will go, the Messiah isn't just for the Jews, the Messiah is for everybody! The Messiah is going to solve all the world's problems...don't you want that? So why don't all of you Catholics and Muslims get on board the Messiah Express and help us usher in this wonderful man who will bring peace and prosperity and fix everything?
They are right about these things happening, but they are not going to happen in the way they think—they've missed a step.
The step they've missed is the fact their Messiah came and the Jews rejected Him two thousand years ago. He will return, but only when they acknowledge their guilt and implore Him to return to rescue them from certain annihilation (Hos. 5:15). But reaching that point involves their acceptance of a false Messiah who will ultimately demand their worship as God and who will turn on those who refuse. Their false Messiah will be a tool in God's hand to judge them for their disobedience, but He will not destroy them—He will, however, purge them.
So, let the disputation begin. Have at it. It is only when the Jews realize they have been deceived on a biblical scale that they will see their true Messiah for who He is and come to faith in Him.
And there's no disputing that.
6/6/2016 — From the "Bronze Rule" Department...
I understand that Barack Obama is a morally bankrupt, spiritually deceived, biblically illiterate narcissist who is being used as a tool in the hands of a holy God to bring judgment against a once-great, once-blessed nation that has utterly turned its back on Him and everything He stands for.
I get that. This is no secret to me, nor should it be to any born-again believer.
But there are times when...oh man.
Just when you thought he couldn't stoop any lower...
Just when you thought "calling evil good" had reached its zenith...
Barack Obama says something like this:
"My reading of scripture tells me that the Golden Rule is pretty high up there in terms of my Christian belief."
Well, isn't that special—the president believes in the Golden Rule. And you'll never guess what he is applying that Golden Rule to. Go ahead, guess.
To defend his decision to force public schools in America to allow students to use restrooms irrespective of their biological gender to slay the mythical beast of discrimination against transgenders?
Wow, you're a good guesser.
Let's review. The Golden Rule is taken from the words of Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount:
12Therefore whatever you desire for men to do to you, you shall also do to them; for this is the law and the prophets.
The Golden Rule is often phrased as "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you," or "Treat others the way you would want them to treat you." It is an abbreviated version of what Jesus told the religious leaders who tried to trap Him into saying something they could use to discredit Him and His teaching:
34But the Pharisees, when they heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, gathered themselves together. 35One of them, a lawyer, asked him a question, testing him. 36"Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the law?" 37Jesus said to him, "'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.' 38This is the first and great commandment. 39A second likewise is this, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' 40The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments."
The Golden Rule is about loving others, because only when we love others as much as we love ourselves do we even begin to get an inkling of how much God loves us.
In the Bible, gold represents God's kingship, His holiness, and His glory. Bronze, on the other hand, represents sin and God's judgment of it. In the mind of Barack Obama, the Golden Rule has been perverted into something very different: he's twisted it into the Bronze Rule:
Accommodate and approve of other people's sin they way
you would want them to accommodate and approve of your sin.
Morally bankrupt. Spiritually deceived. Biblically illiterate.
6/13/2016 — From the "What Took You So Long?" Department...
Theoretical physicist Michio Kaku, one of the world's most recognizable scientists thanks to numerous appearances on the Discovery Channel, the History Channel, the Science Channel etc., was in the news recently. Kaku, who has done extensive work in the field of string theory and related areas, made what for scientists is a stunning announcement:
"I have concluded that we are in a world made by rules created by an intelligence...To me it is clear that we exist in a plan which is governed by rules that were created, shaped by a universal intelligence and not by chance."
Kaku's theory involves something called "primitive semi-radius tachyons," and I for one don't have the foggiest idea what that means. (If you know, please don't write me because I don't even want to know.) But whatever they are, Mr. Kaku is convinced that they point to the existence of a Creator God.
My question for Mr. Kaku is the same question I have for any scientist who reaches the point where they admit the possibility that there is intelligence behind the design of the universe:
Well, duh...what took you so long?
If you ever take the time to check, you will discover that the greatest scientific minds in history—Albert Einstein, Isaac Newton, James Clerk Maxwell, Louis Pasteur, Galileo Galilei, Rene Descartes, and so on—had one thing in common:
Virtually all of them believed in God.
They may not have been overtly religious or celebrated for their great faith, but if you read a little about their lives you will see that the vast majority of history's most brilliant scientists took belief in God as a given.
That was then, this is now.
Within the last few decades, science has reached the point where belief in God is the intellectual equivalent of belief in the Tooth Fairy—although believing in the Tooth Fairy is arguably less damaging to a scientist's career. Belief in God is viewed in the scientific community as a childish myth reserved for starry-eyed freshmen who are struggling to pass algebra.
But that doesn't change the truth of what the Holy Spirit inspired Paul to write nearly two thousand years ago:
20For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.
(Romans 1:20 AKJV)
God gave mankind an innate awareness of His existence, which He made clearly evident in the natural world around us. So we have no excuse for not acknowledging Him, yet scientists today arrogantly use intellect and reason as excuses for not doing just that.
Unlike many Christians, I don't do handsprings when I read about a well-known scientist who says the evidence points to the existence of God. The only thing believing in God demonstrates is that you are aware of something God planted in your DNA. Woo hoo. That makes believing that God exists about as noteworthy an achievement as a bird deciding to head south for the winter.
19You believe that there is one God; you do well: the devils also believe, and tremble.
(James 2:19 AKJV)
It's sad but true: rather than being a natural recognition of the obvious, for many people today admitting that God exists and created all things is a big first step. The next step, however, is to understand what separated you from Him, and the final step is to understand and believe in faith what God did to remedy the situation.
At that point, the only thing left to do is wonder what took you so long.
6/20/2016 — From the "Purgatory Light" Department...
Are you a Catholic who is worried about having to spend an excessive amount of time in purgatory? Well, I have good news for you: according to the Vatican, you can receive an indulgence that will trim your flame time and allow you to enjoy "purgatory light" by just attending Catholic World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro, starting on July 22.
Oh, you mean you can't make it? Well, cheer up, because I have even better news!
All you have to do is follow Pope Francis' tweets from the event! That's right, just follow the pope's tweets from Rio and when the time comes you'll be skipping out of purgatory in no time at all!
Now, don't think you can reduce your frying time in the flames of purgatory for just chatting on the Internet. Oh, no no no. This is serious business. According to the Vatican, you must follow the Holy Father's tweets live, and you must also do so in manner that demonstrates that you are truly penitent and contrite. This is not a joke or a game. According to Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli, head of the pontifical council for social communication:
"You can't obtain indulgences like getting a coffee from a vending machine."
Whew, that's a relief. It's good to know the Roman Catholic Church is still taking the matter of indulgences seriously, you know? None of this modern loosey-goosey stuff, no sir.
Welcome to the twelfth century.
My first reaction to things like this is to not know whether to laugh or cry, but in the end it makes me lean toward crying. It saddens me beyond measure and astonishes me beyond words that the Roman Catholic Church can presume to represent Christ to a lost and dying world and continue to spout medieval, ludicrously unscriptural nonsense that poisons and undermines the very gospel they pretend to promulgate.
The reason it saddens me is because they are leading untold millions of sincere people to a Christless eternity with doctrines of demons.
The reason it astonishes is because I can't believe the Roman Catholic Church is still using money-making tactics formalized in the twelfth century.
Wanna have some fun? Ask a Catholic priest why they call it the "Dark Ages."
When he begins to squirm a little, ask him why the Dark Ages ended when Bibles became more widely available in the fifteenth century.
If he turns blue and begins to choke on his tongue, call 911.
And ask him whether or not he follows the pope's tweets.
6/27/2016 — From the "Spiritual Meltdown" Department...
A couple of months ago I wrote an article about the 144,000 Jewish evangelists who are mentioned in Revelation 7 and 14, and I discussed how I believe that the Orthodox and ultra-Orthodox Jewish communities were the most obvious source for them. These guys basically do nothing but study the Torah and Talmudic writings, and are very confrontational in their beliefs.
According to Revelation 7 and 14, the time will come when 144,000 Jewish apostle Pauls will take the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ to the post-Rapture world during the Tribulation, and will ultimately be martyred. And ultra-Orthodox Jews, or haredim, are perfect candidates to be part of that number...at least they will be after they embrace Jesus as the Messiah.
Which, by all traditional indications, will occur at some point after pigs become kosher—and learn to fly.
O ye of little faith...
According to reports, however, hundreds of haredim are re-examining their biblical beliefs and are experiencing a "spiritual meltdown of historic proportions."
Translation: Some are beginning to consider the possibility that Yeshua really is the Messiah.
Not only that, but some are beginning to secretly read forbidden material, such as (gasp) the New Testament.
The report comes from Kehila News, a messianic Jewish news website, which in turn picked up on it from an article that appeared on MyNet, the news site of the Israeli city of Petach Tikva. That article was actually intended as a warning to Jewish people in that area about the Christian propaganda being disseminated by messianic Jews.
In other words, people were being warned about the message being spread by messianic Jews because that message is actually getting through to some within the ultra-Orthodox community.
And that should surprise no one, because the entire Old Testament points with stunning, irrefutable clarity to Jesus, and so any honest, unbiased search of the Old Testament can only lead to one place: the foot of the cross, which is exactly where these haredim are beginning to be led.
That "thump" you just heard was the sound of Bible prophecy taking a step forward.
7/4/2016 — From the "Just to Be Clear" Department...
Online dating services, as I'm sure you know, are websites that take the personal profiles of single people and, for a fee, attempt to match them with potential romantic partners based on that information. Today, there are many such sites that cater to certain niche groups, and California-based Spark Networks, Inc. owns several such services: one for Jewish singles, one for Latter Day Saints singles, one for Catholic singles, one for military singles, one for black singles, one for deaf singles, etc.
And, of course, one for Christian singles: ChristianMingle. According to a recent news item, however, it seems that two gay men who used the site complained they were being excluded from searches, and filed suit against the company for violating California's anti-discrimination laws.
And, shocker of shockers, they won.
For its part, ChristianMingle willingly agreed to modify its website to allow gay singles to search for same sex partners, paid each plaintiff $9,000 and $450,000 in legal fees, and afterwards a spokesperson for the company said they were "pleased to resolve this litigation."
And just to be clear: ChristianMingle didn't admit to any wrongdoing.
Oh, wait, there was something...oh, what was that...hmmm, maybe this blurb about ChristianMingle from Spark Networks can jog my memory:
ChristianMingle.com, the largest and fastest growing online community for Christian singles, is the premier destination for single Christians looking to date and marry within the Christian faith. Initially launched in 2001, the site now has more than 9 million registered members, with more than 3 million members joining in the past year alone.
ChristianMingle is more than just a site for Christian dating; it's also a Christian community where members can interact with likeminded singles who share their faith, values and love for God in Christ. ChristianMingle's deepest desire is to see its members grow in their relationship with Christ while living out their spiritual journeys. The site's Statement of Faith is as follows: "The basis for our faith is Jesus Christ, the Son of God, Lord and Savior of the world and God's written Word, the Bible. We believe that embracing what God said allows us to live in freedom, joy, and purpose."
Oh, that's right. I remember now—ChristianMingle actually wants to help born-again believers find a partner so they can "grow in their relationship with Christ" and "share their faith, values and love for God in Christ," since the basis for their faith is "Jesus Christ, the Son of God, Lord and Savior of the world and God's written Word, the Bible."
Yeah, Christ, remember Him? And God's written Word, remember that?
That would be the same Christ who died to pay man's penalty for sin, and the same written Word that condemns homosexuality as a sin, in both the Old and New Testaments.
Just to be clear.
Since they were so "pleased" and willing to go along with the ways of the world and modify their service to include homosexuals, while they're at it ChristianMingle may as well go ahead and modify the above blurb to reflect their true core values. For their convenience, I have highlighted in bold type the parts that can safely be deleted.
7/11/2016 — From the "Scoff Now" Department...
You've all heard 'em...scoffers who refuse to believe in God and who mock the Bible's claims that God created the heavens and the earth, created man, and then wiped out the entire population in a global flood except for Noah and his family and all the animals he could squeeze into a huge wooden boat that God told him to build.
Well, they won't be scoffing now, no sir.
A company called Answers in Genesis, headed up by Australian creationist and entrepreneur Ken Ham, has constructed a full-sized replica of Noah's ark in Williamstown, Kentucky. The purpose, according to Answers in Genesis, is as follows:
"We will powerfully show that, just as the account of Noah's flood did actually happen, so did the rest of what we read in the scriptures—especially the gospel message preached by Christ in the New Testament. We hope to inspire a return to and a respect for the Bible as relevant for our culture today."
The exhibit, known as the Ark Encounter, opened on July 7 and is expected to be a popular draw for Bible-believing Christians—and I certainly don't see any reason why it wouldn't be. It was constructed according to dimensions given in Genesis 6, and is filled all manner of exhibits inspired by the biblical account in Genesis 6–8 to give visitors a taste of what life on board the ark might have been like.
Now, please don't think I am criticizing Mr. Ham or his 510-foot model of Noah's ark. I actually think it's pretty cool, and I'm sure that I would thoroughly enjoy visiting it sometime. What bothers me, however, is the idea that this will somehow influence people to believe in God and the Bible.
Implicit in the promotional blitz for the Ark Encounter is the notion that this will prove to those who do not believe in God and certainly do not believe that the Bible is God's Word that Christians are right and they are wrong—and the chain of reasoning that undergirds the idea apparently goes like this:
We built a big boat according to dimensions given in a story in Genesis. And there it is—all 510 feet of it. That proves the story of Noah and the ark is absolutely true, which proves the story of the Flood is absolutely true, which proves the book of Genesis is absolutely true, which proves the rest of the Old Testament is absolutely true, which proves the entire Bible is absolutely true, which proves the Bible is absolutely God's inspired, inerrant Word, which proves God is absolutely real and that Christians are absolutely right, which proves you atheists are absolutely wrong. So there.
(The line to get baptized forms on the left, but you'll need to show your ticket stub.) There's only one problem with this line of reasoning.
I can tell you now that 99 percent of atheists will laugh themselves silly over this (100 percent of the ones I have personally interacted with). Why? Simple:
People do not reject the existence of God as a result of honest intellectual doubts. They reject the existence of God because they hate God and love their sin.
Ken Ham, like millions of sincere, well-meaning Christians in the Church today, has it backwards:
People don't believe in God because they believe the Bible is true.
People believe the Bible is true because they believe in God.
People don't reject the existence of God because they dismiss the Bible.
People dismiss the Bible because they reject the existence of God.
And an atheist isn't going to believe in God or the Bible just because someone built a 510-foot wooden boat.
7/18/2016 — From the "Blow Up Your TV" Department...
This news item isn't really all that shocking or sensational. It scarcely qualifies as controversial at this stage of the game. In fact, you might say it has a pall of inevitability hanging over it.
It's a bit like an hourly update on a dying patient who isn't expected to make it through the night.
The gay mafia, aka the LGBT movement, has scored a predictable victory in the field of television in the form of a "reality" TV show patterned after a popular show called The Bachelor.
In The Bachelor, each season begins with one eligible bachelor and a group of up to 25 single women, and each weekly episode features various types of social situations and date-like scenarios in which the man gets to interact with the women. Each week the bachelor eliminates one (or possibly two) of the women and at the end of the season, he is expected to propose to the final woman remaining.
And I'll bet you have already guessed what type of show will premier this fall on American television.
That's right—Finding Prince Charming. Same basic structure as The Bachelor, but with all homosexual men. So, the homosexual lifestyle is set to be further glorified and normalized and hammered into the consciousness of the American public as what God calls an abomination is set to make its debut on prime-time television.
And there is no doubt in my mind that the lesbian version is being discussed in certain circles as we speak.
I've got a better idea:
Just blow up your TV.
I'm kidding, but just barely. I do feel compelled to say one thing, however: your television brings into your home a constant barrage of worldly, God-dishonoring garbage. It is a fountainhead of flesh—a cesspool of sin. And it scarcely matters if you're watching a "good" show, because you are still bombarded with commercials for other shows that no born-again believer has any business putting in front of his eyes.
And does it bother me if someone mocks me or calls me names because of the position I hold?
Hint: I've got a T-shirt that says "BIBLE THUMPER."
7/25/2016 — From the "Raise Them Right" Department...
According to an article in the Christian Post, if you are a high school student in central Guizhou province, you will not be allowed to enter college if you continue attending your local home church—i.e., real church.
And just to top it off, if you are parents of children under 18, you may be subject to punishment and fines if you take your kids to unauthorized religious services—i.e, real church.
Welcome to China, where the Christians outnumber the Communists—and that has the Communists running scared.
The mainland Chinese government continues its heavy-handed bullying of churches in many parts of the country in a desperate effort to crush what Communist leaders see as a threat to the Communist ideals the nation was founded on.
And why are parents being punished for taking their children to church? I just love this. According to government officials, it is to prevent the children from being brainwashed.
Brainwashed. They actually said that. Atheist Communist officials don't want those poor impressionable kids "brainwashed." No sir.
But the Bible tells us to teach our children about God and to raise them to reverence Him:
4You fathers, don't provoke your children to wrath, but nurture them in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
6Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.
Born-again believers should absolutely "brainwash" their kids. From Day One, it should be...
God God God God God.
Jesus Jesus Jesus Jesus Jesus.
Bible Bible Bible Bible Bible.
Gospel gospel gospel gospel gospel.
You're dang skippy you should brainwash them...and keep brainwashing them until they are washed in the blood. Because if you don't, I guarantee you that Satan and the sin-infested world he controls will have first crack at them.
Satan wants you to leave your children's spiritual training to others—to just let it go and hope for the best. He wants you to just sit back and hope your kids "find Jesus" on their own, and certainly doesn't want you to be "pushy" about religion.
Oh no. That wouldn't be tolerant or inclusive. You want your kids to grow up to be tolerant and inclusive, don't you?
Listen, I've got a better idea. Take your children on a boat out into the ocean, and sail out to an area filled with hungry sharks. Then toss your children overboard with no life jackets or protection of any kind, and as you sail away shout out to them:
"Hey kids, I hope you find your way back to shore OK!"
Why should you do this? Simple.
Spiritually speaking, your children stand a better chance of survival this way.
8/1/2016 — From the "Stunned Silence" Department...
A Knoxville, Tennessee family never expected to stir up such a hornets' nest by trying to place a classified ad in the newspaper—and it's safe to say the great majority of those hornets are Christians.
Lois McGinnis and her family own Cedar Springs Christian Store, and at some point they opened a second location that they are now planning to sell. OK, so what do people do when they want to sell something?
That's right...they put an ad in the newspaper.
So that's what Mrs. McGinnis did. On July 26, she contacted the News Sentinel, a local newspaper, and placed a classified ad that simply said that Cedar Springs Christian Store was having a closeout sale, along with the contact phone number. She paid the money, and expected to see the ad appear on July 28.
Come the 28th, however, the ad did not appear. She called the paper and spoke to someone in the classified ad section to find out what the problem was, and was told her ad wasn't run because it contained an "offensive word."
(Several seconds of stunned silence...)
When Mrs. McGinnis regained her aplomb, she inquired as to the nature of this supposed "offensive word," possibly assuming some bizarre typo had occurred. Perhaps someone had misspelled "Cedar Springs" as "Cocaine Suppliers" or something of that nature.
But no. The offensive word?
Mrs. McGinnis was so outraged that she brought the incident to public attention on her Facebook page, and the response from the largely Christian population of eastern Tennessee was swift, overwhelmingly supportive of McGinnis, and merciless in their condemnation of the paper's actions.
For their part, the paper issued the following boilerplate pablum:
"We had a system failure, which resulted in a classified ad for Cedar Springs getting hung up in our front-end system."
Oh, so that's it. It was a "system failure," don't you see. (And notice they couldn't even bring themselves to say "Cedar Springs Christian Store.")
"We corrected the technology issue in our system and the ad is now running for an extended period at no extra charge."
Yep, one of those "technology issues." Don't you hate it when that happens?
"The News Sentinel does not have a bias against Christianity or any other religion."
Naaah...whatever gave you that idea?
I have to assume that "Cedar Springs Muslim Store" or "Cedar Springs Black Magick Store" would have posed no problem. The truth? It's not the word "Christian" that's offensive. It's not just the name of Christ that's offensive.
18If the world hates you, you know that it has hated me before it hated you.
Anyway, if the News Sentinel thinks the word "Christian" is offensive, I'd love to see what kinds of front-end problems this ad would cause them:
"Closeout sale at Cedar Springs Blood-Bought Child of the Living God and Born-Again Believer in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the Only Name Under Heaven Given Among Men by Which We Must Be Saved Store."
8/8/2016 — From the "Liar, Liar" Department...
In a move that smacks of desperation (at least in this writer's opinion), Islamic terrorist group ISIS is conducting a bit of proselytizing.
In the most recent issue of Dabiq, the Islamic State's magazine (yes, they have a magazine), Christians are passionately urged to "break their crosses" and convert to Islam.
You know, Islam. The religion of peace.
According to the editors:
"In essence, we explain why they must abandon their infidelity and accept Islam, the religion of sincerity and submission to the Lord of the heavens and the earth.
(Presumably a reference Allah—the so-called "god" of the Qur'an who is so far above any involvement with mankind that he is capriciously unconcerned with our eternal destiny and callously uninterested in anything resembling a plan of redemption for sinful man.)
Omitted from the issue was any mention of the fact that if Christians don't convert to the religion of peace, they will be persecuted, tortured, raped, butchered, enslaved, crucified, or murdered.
According to the contributing writers of Dabiq, Jesus Himself was a slave of Allah (which is apparently mankind's highest aspiration) and was never crucified, and when He returns He will do exactly what they are urging Christians to do now: break crosses. Jesus will shatter crosses to show Christians how badly they have been deceived by a "criminal" like the apostle Paul, a "treacherous Jew" who...
"...intentionally sought to deviate the monotheistic Nazarenes in order to tarnish Jesus' name—even if it meant Paul's own persecution."
Which probably makes about as much sense to you as it does to me. Oh, and after He returns, Jesus will wage jihad to convert the world to Islam.
Muslims actually believe this, and it makes sense to me that they would believe such a thing. And why does it make sense?
8Be sober and self-controlled. Be watchful. Your adversary, the devil, walks around like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.
(1 Peter 5:8)
44You are of your father, the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and doesn't stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks on his own; for he is a liar, and its father.
In addition to seeking to devour mankind and being the father of lies, Satan is the one who invented Islam—not to mention all other religions of the world (including his pièce de résistance: apostate Christianity).
8/15/2016 — From the "Smile—God Loves You" Department...
According to an article at WND.com, if you're a preacher of the gospel in Iowa, you may soon find yourself in violation of the law if you actually preach the gospel.
Apparently Iowa's Civil Rights Commission has been trying to claim authority over what preachers can and cannot say, and to define for Iowans what is "religious." And to the surprise of no one, the focus is on homosexuality and transgenderism.
It seems that the Iowa Civil Rights Commission is so afraid that a preacher in a public house of worship in their fair state might inadvertently say something that might make a homosexual or transgendered person feel uncomfortable or unwelcome that they feel compelled to exercise some degree of control over what is preached from Iowa pulpits.
And it seems that the Commission has the title for every sermon that will ever be preached in Iowa from now on all picked out:
Smile—God Loves You!
Lawyers for the Fort Des Moines Church of Christ in Des Moines, Iowa are seeking assistance from a federal court to prevent the Commission from censoring their pastor's sermons, and you can already see where this is trending:
Let's say a preacher can't call homosexuality a sin because it might make a homosexual in attendance feel uncomfortable. Next, that preacher will have to refrain from calling adultery a sin because it might make those who have had an affair feel out of place. And we sure don't want to make alcoholics and drug addicts feel unwelcome in any way, so mum's the word about your body being a temple of the Holy Spirit. Oh, and let's not forget prostitutes and pedophiles—we want them to feel as comfortable and welcome as anyone else, so there'll be no mention of the fact that all manner of sexual immorality is a sin. This is getting a bit tedious...so why don't we just simplify things and say you can't call anything a sin so that we don't make any type of sinner feel uncomfortable? Wouldn't that be easier and more, you know, pleasant? Too bad that basically guts the gospel, but oh well. Let's just focus on how much God loves us. That'll make everybody happy!
Sure it would. And it would fulfill prophecy to boot:
3For the time will come when they will not listen to the sound doctrine, but, having itching ears, will heap up for themselves teachers after their own lusts; 4 and will turn away their ears from the truth, and turn aside to fables.
(2 Timothy 4:3–4)
Lost in all this, of course, is the simple fact that the very purpose of the gospel is to make sinners so uncomfortable under the conviction of the Holy Spirit that they humble themselves and place their faith in the atonement Jesus purchased for them with His blood for the forgiveness of their sin.
The gospel wasn't meant to slap a smile on the face of a sinner.
It was meant to slap the smile off the face of a sinner.
8/22/2016 — From the "Keep Dreaming" Department...
The Jews have absolutely no historical connection with Jerusalem, and there isn't a single trace of evidence to suggest they ever did. Those sneaky Jews are trying desperately to unearth such a scrap of evidence from Haram al-Sharif (the Temple Mount), and if they can't find one, they'll plant one and undermine the foundations of Al-Aqsa mosque in the process in a devious effort to destroy it because they have this fantasy of building a so-called "temple" there, which is never going to happen.
Oh, and the skies over Jerusalem today are a lovely shade of green.
Just thought I'd give you a little update from the Palestinian Authority, who can keep dreaming as far as I'm concerned. According to an article in Israel National News:
"...the Waqf, which was left in charge of the Temple Mount following Jerusalem's reunification in 1967, has removed every sign of ancient Jewish presence at the Jewish holy site. Israeli Police, in an attempt to appease the Waqf, discriminate against Jews. They limit the number of Jewish worshippers allowed on the Temple Mount at one time in order to prevent conflict with Muslim worshippers. They often close the Mount to Jews in response to Muslim riots—despite evidence that Muslim riots have been planned in advance for the specific purpose of forcing Jews out."
Now, the Palestinians are clamoring for UNESCO to step in to stop those sneaky Jews from further "damaging" this great Muslim "holy site."
OK, listen up:
1. God gave the land of Israel to the Jews.
18In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, To your seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates.
(Genesis 15:18 AKJV / emphasis added)
And that promise was passed on through his son Isaac, the son of promise and of faith—not Ishmael, the son of the flesh and of faithlessness.
2. The Temple Mount is the site of previous Jewish temples.
1And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to show him the buildings of the temple. 2And Jesus said to them, See you not all these things? truly I say to you, There shall not be left here one stone on another, that shall not be thrown down.
3And as he sat on the mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of your coming, and of the end of the world?
(Matthew 214:1–3 AKJV / emphasis added)
They were in Jerusalem. The Mount of Olives is across the Kidron Valley from the Temple Mount. In Jerusalem.
3. There will be another Jewish temple built on the Temple Mount.
15When you therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoever reads, let him understand:) 16Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains
(Matthew 24:15–16 AKJV / emphasis added)
The Antichrist will desecrate a rebuilt Jewish temple at the midpoint of the Tribulation, and claim to be God.
4. The sky is blue.
24They saw the God of Israel. Under his feet was like a paved work of sapphire stone, like the skies for clearness.
(Exodus 24:10 AKJV / emphasis added)
Sapphire is blue. So is the sky last time I checked, not green.
Just thought I'd give you a little update from God's Word.
8/29/2016 — From the "Don't Touch That Dial" Department...
You may have heard of the infamous "War of the Worlds" radio broadcast narrated by Orsen Welles on October 30, 1938. In that hour-long broadcast, which was presented as a fictional dramatization, Welles gave listeners a series of mock news updates concerning the landing of alien spacecraft. The narration was so captivating that a few listeners who had tuned in late and missed the fact that it was a dramatization panicked and were convinced aliens had actually landed in New Jersey.
It seems an Israeli radio station recently took a page from Orsen Welles' playbook, with one small difference:
Instead of Martians landing in New Jersey, it was the Messiah arriving in Jerusalem!
In the broadcast, a series of mock news updates were reported from the Western Wall, where a large crowd was gathered to celebrate Tisha B'Av, a day that marks the destruction of both previous Jewish temples.
Just as "War of the Worlds" had been, this was also presented as a dramatization. And just as they had in 1938, some listeners who tuned in late were thrown into a tizzy over the breathless reports that the Messiah had actually arrived in Jerusalem, complete with the sounds of cheering crowds, quotes from the Torah, and other messianic blessings thrown in for effect.
OK, straight up—this story creeped me out. I mean the whole "little hairs on the back of my neck" thing. Messiah fever in Israel is beginning to reach levels that evoke psychiatric terms.
Or colloquial ones: it's full-bent bonkers. Religious Jews in Israel are about to Messiah all over themselves, and it just keeps growing.
To tell you the truth, I'm not sure what else to say about this. But I do know one thing: the ultimate embracing of a false Messiah by the Jews is something that is of staggering prophetic significance, and as such merits the full attention of all students of Bible prophecy.
And it most definitely has my full attention.
9/5/2016 — From the "It's the Blood, Stupid" Department...
You know, I'm all for protecting the earth and saving the environment and all that, but I didn't know whether to laugh or cry when I read in an article recently that according to Pope Francis, global warming is a sin, along with things like deforestation, air pollution, and the widespread loss of biodiversity.
These are sins, didn't you know.
Bless me Father, for I haven't recycled.
Well, the pope didn't mince any words as to what was to be done about these sins against God and the lovely planet He gave us.
Q. What do Catholics do when they sin?
A. They look for something they can do to atone for that sin.
And atone we must, according to the pope. We can...obtain forgiveness, I guess...by refusing to use paper and plastic, using less water, turning off unnecessary lights, using public transportation, planting trees, and a number of other environmentally friendly practices.
In other words:
We can atone for our environmental sins by going green.
This, my friends, is what the Roman Catholic Church—the corporate face that Christianity shows the world—has reduced the idea of atonement to.
Not a word about our sin nature. Not a word about Christ. Not a word about the cross He died on.
And not a whisper about why:
21But now apart from the law, a righteousness of God has been revealed, being testified by the law and the prophets; 22even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ to all and on all those who believe. For there is no distinction, 23for all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God; 24being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus; 25whom God set forth to be an atoning sacrifice, through faith in his blood, for a demonstration of his righteousness through the passing over of prior sins, in God's forbearance; 26to demonstrate his righteousness at this present time; that he might himself be just, and the justifier of him who has faith in Jesus.
(Romans 3:21–26 / emphasis added)
Someone should remind the pope what the word "atonement" actually means.
It's about Christ and Him crucified, not reducing your carbon footprint.
9/12/2016 — From the "Don't Speak Too Soon" Department...
Three Muslim women were arrested in France this week in connection with an apparent terrorist plot to blow up a public transportation hub in Paris. A car full of gas cylinders was found near the cathedral of Notre Dame, and authorities believe the intended target of the attack was a nearby railway station in the heart of the French capital. The car belonged to the father of one of the radicalized women, and it was later learned that he had recently pledged allegiance to Islamic terrorist group ISIS. One of the women was shot and wounded during the arrest, and one police officer was stabbed.
Yeah, I know. Go ahead and say it:
Ho hum...another Islamic terrorist plot. What else is new? What's so special about this one?
In an exquisitely ironic twist, French president Francois Hollande had only hours earlier delivered a speech in which he urged France to "embrace Islam" and defended the country's growing Muslim minority. Hollande insisted that, like both Christianity and Judaism, Islam can peacefully coexist with secularism in France:
"Nothing in the idea of secularism opposes the practice of Islam in France, provided it respects the law."
Oops, spoke too soon.
It is incredibly naive to believe that Islam can peacefully coexist with those whom the Qur'an says must be subjugated or slaughtered if they will not submit to Allah—a cold, aloof, self-contradictory "god" who apparently has no concern over man's sinful condition, no grace in the offing, no plan of salvation, and no use for man except to be the bemused recipient of his fearful, futile devotion.
I'm sure many believers would suggest that France's national motto should be changed to "Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité, Naïveté," as we watch the tools Satan will ultimately use to (unsuccessfully) attempt to destroy Israel metastasize unchecked
And as the world swallows rat poison and then wonders why the rats won't die.
9/19/2016 — From the "Stand Up and Be Counted" Department...
I'm sure you've heard about a growing number of professional athletes, primarily NFL football players, who have made headlines by refusing to stand for the national anthem at the beginning of games. The so-called "protest" was started a couple of weeks ago by Colin Kaepernick, quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, and it has rapidly morphed into a highly controversial and bitterly divisive social issue.
The whole thing apparently started when Kaepernick discovered to his shock and dismay that the lyrics to "The Star-Spangled Banner" contain the word "slave." The song that became America's national anthem was written by Sir Francis Scott Key in 1814 and contains four verses, although we only sing the first one. As a result, that's the only verse anyone actually knows. However, the third verse of the song does in fact contain the word "slave." The line in question goes like this:
"No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave..."
Yes, Key uses the word "slave." Horror of horrors! I won't take the time to go into a detailed analysis of the lyrics, but I will say that it is extremely unlikely that he is referencing black African slaves as many are quick to assume. He is condemning the British for their practice of forcing captured enemy combatants to fight in defense of the Crown—quite literally as "slaves." The word "mercenaries" refers to the British use of German Hessians during the War of Independence. This has very little to do with black African slaves in America, and even less to do with the oppression of the black race.
The point is that Key's lyrics do not voice support for black slavery in America, nor do they seek to oppress anyone in any way. And to accuse Key of doing so through his lyrics is nothing more than political correctness running amok due to the inadvertent use of a radioactive hot-button word.
In other words, it's just plain stupid.
Anyway, all of a sudden numerous individual players as well as entire teams have come up with various ways of responding to this "protest": sitting, kneeling, raising a fist, standing with arms linked, etc., rather than simply standing at attention, usually with your right hand over your heart. Predictably, this has sparked a firestorm of controversy, with many Americans decrying what they see as inexcusable disrespect of the flag and of the country that it stands for.
That's why I just loved this article that I came across the other day. The article is about a young man named Vita Tonga who plays for the Blue Raiders football team at L.D. Bell High School in Hurst, Texas. According to the story, Vita was seriously injured in a game recently, tearing the ACL in his right knee and is temporarily confined to a wheelchair. In spite of his injury, Vita insisted on being present at the team's next game, and was wheeled out in uniform to join his teammates on the sideline.
But what happened next constitutes one of those rare moments when words fail.
When they were ready to sing the national anthem at the beginning of the game, the entire team stood at attention along the sideline. Including Vita, who managed to get out of his wheelchair and stand up, in spite of the pain and the bulky brace on his injured leg.
I encourage you to click on the link below to see the photo that has since gone viral—a photo of what it means to be patriotic.
She may have her flaws and she may be under the judgment of a holy God, but there are still people who love America.
Here's one of them.
9/26/2016 — From the "Pack Your Bags...or Not" Department...
As if you didn't have enough reasons being thrown at you to either vote or not vote for either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton...
The following news item has a ring of truth to it—the sort of thing that makes you say to yourself, "Yep, why am I not surprised."
Dennis Ross has worked on Israeli-Palestinian relations for decades, working as a special assistant for President Obama for about two years, and as a special adviser to Bill and Hillary Clinton. In a recent Times of Israel article, Ross had some interesting comments about how the outcome of the U.S. presidential election could effect Obama's actions during his final weeks in office.
At the United Nations, the U.S. has long had a tradition of vetoing resolutions introduced by other countries that were damaging to Israel. In spite of our squabbles and disagreements, we've basically had their back at the UN. Of course, our relationship with Israel has steadily gone downhill on Obama's watch, and has reached the point within the last year or two where it is a thinly veiled secret that Obama would happily throw Israel to the dogs if it meant a shiny gold star on his foreign policy report card.
The problem is that Obama has essentially nothing to show for his nearly eight years in office in terms of foreign policy (or much else, for that matter). It's been one misguided, misinformed misstep after another, and now he's worried about his "legacy."
And the framework of a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians is just what the doctor ordered.
But remember: your legacy is what you're remembered for. If the next president comes along and undoes it, it's not much of a legacy, ya know?
Obama wants to do something big—and more importantly, something that the next president cannot reverse.
Enter a Security Council resolution—something the U.S. can normally veto. Obama is considering introducing a Security Council resolution later this fall (after the election) that would essentially force a two-state solution down the throats of Israel and the Palestinians. It would put a gun to the heads of both sides and say "Here's the deal."
But if Hillary Clinton (the white, female, slightly less delusional version of Obama) wins the election, Obama may hold back on this idea. He may wait to see if it would help her or hurt her. Don't forget: Obama owes her big time for taking a bullet for him over Benghazi. He might work with Clinton to forge a way forward that doesn't resort to such an extreme and unprecedented step. Obama will know he's got somebody waiting in the wings that he can work and play well with in Hillary.
Ah, but if Trump wins. If Donald Trump wins the election in November, the telephone in the Domino's Pizza nearest the White House is going to be ringing off the wall. It's going to be all hands on deck for his speech writers, spin doctors, and all the other liberal Democratic minions who do his bidding. They're probably going to be pulling some all-nighters.
As a matter of fact, it wouldn't surprise me if they were already working on it as I write this.
If Donald Trump wins the election, it just may force Obama's hand. He may feel he has little choice but to plow ahead with a Security Council resolution to force a two-state solution. He may see it as a case of now or never.
If Trump wins and Obama doesn't pull the trigger, Obama can kiss his legacy goodbye because Trump is unlikely to play ball with Obama on basically anything. But if Obama does the deed this fall, Trump won't be able to reverse it and it will stand. Voilà: Obama's legacy is assured, for better or worse. And I do mean worse.
So, here's one way to look at the November election:
If Donald Trump wins, I'll be packing my Rapture carry-on bag.
If Hillary Clinton wins, chill. We've probably got time to send a few things to the cleaners first.
Just my two cents.
10/3/2016 — From the "Pound of Flesh" Department...
This kind of story is becoming more common, sad to say, but it is worth being aware of the types of things that are happening with increasing frequency in the United States these days.
A small, family-owned bakery in Oregon has shut down, or perhaps I should say has been shut down, and it has been shut down by a gang of vicious, intolerant bullies who seek nothing more than to persecute those who sincerely disagree with the perversion they euphemistically refer to as an "alternative lifestyle" because the owners of that bakery consider it more important to honor God and His Word.
That's their lifestyle.
And the reason those vicious, intolerant bullies have free reign to do that is because that perversion they euphemistically refer to as an "alternative lifestyle" just happens to have become the law of the land under one Barack Hussein Obama, the soon-to-be former president (ever the optimist, that's me).
Sweet Cakes by Melissa was owned and operated by Aaron and Melissa Klein, and in 2013 a lesbian couple demanded to have a cake made for their wedding (no doubt knowing full well the Kleins were Christians and would decline). Naturally, the Kleins refused due to their Christian faith, and it was game on.
The Kleins didn't go after the LGBT; the LGBT went after the Kleins.
The Kleins were ultimately fined $135,000 by the state of Oregon—and the although the legal battle continues, they have been forced to close their shop.
Oh, but even a huge fine wasn't enough for the gay mafia. Oh no. That pound of flesh just whet their appetite.
The Kleins have faced a never-ending series of attacks from the LGBT community—that bastion of tolerance and inclusion, including boycotts of their shop, bullying, and death threats aimed at their children.
Welcome to post-Christian America—the land of the freaks and the home of the bullies.
And the flag they pledge allegiance to doesn't have stars of white on a field of blue and stripes of red and white.
It has a rainbow of only six colors.
10/10/2016 — From the "Land of the Not So Free" Department...
Mainland China doesn't exactly have a stellar record when it comes to human rights, and what they are trying to do with Christianity is a case in point.
The Communist Party in China has been waging war on what it sees as a serious threat to Communist and Chinese ideals, and to life in general in the People's Republic. And the threat?
The gospel of Jesus Christ.
In recent months, it has reached the point where Communist officials have ordered the tearing down of crosses on churches in many cities. In April, a pastor's wife was killed in Henan province when she and her husband tried to stop their church from being bulldozed. He survived—she wasn't so lucky.
This month, the State Administration for Religious Affairs (SARA) has proposed a series of regulations that constitute a thinly veiled chokehold on religious freedom in China. Although the draft assures people that they are free to believe as they wish and engage in religious activity, the Orwellian list of regulations signals the death knell for any semblance of religious freedom in China.
Here are a few highlights:
• No religious activities that are not approved by SARA.
• No one may provide a venue for religious services that are not approved by SARA.
• No one may use their home for religious practices that are not approved by SARA (including home or family Bible studies).
• No publishing religious materials without approval from SARA.
• No foreign or domestic donations may be made to any religious organization that hasn't been approved by SARA.
• No one may call themselves a pastor without the approval of SARA.
• No international religious exchanges may happen without the approval of SARA.
• No one may study theology at school without the approval of SARA.
The bad news is that every aspect of religion is to be brought under the control of the state under the guise of "protecting religious freedom."
The good news is that there are influential people in China fighting this, and with God's help they may yet strike some of this down.
People in the land of the free should pray for those in the land of the not so free—that the light of the gospel would continue to go forth among the precious Chinese people.
At least until we are all immigrate to the land of the redeemed.
10/17/2016 — From the "Alternate Reality" Department...
It's reaching the point where this sort of thing doesn't even surprise me anymore, but sometimes it's so egregious that I just can't let it slide.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization recently adopted a draft resolution that reads as if it came from an alternate reality.
In fact, I think it did.
The resolution put out by UNESCO recently apparently comes from an alternate reality in which the Jewish people have no connection with the land of Israel, the city of Jerusalem, or the Temple Mount whatsoever. In this reality, the so-called Jewish "Temple Mount" (supposedly the site of two previous Jewish temples whose existence cannot be proven) is known as Al-Haram Al Sharif, and its most prominent features are the golden-domed Qubbat as-Sakhrah (Dome of the Rock), Buraq Plaza (the Western Wall), and the Al-Aqsa Mosque, allegedly some of the holiest sites in Islam.
Incidentally, and apologies to all French people, but in this alternate reality Napoleon never existed either.
With all due respect to le petit caporal, one thing is clear: there is literally no limit to the anti-Israeli bias that permeates the United Nations at every level. Benjamin Netanyahu had this to say:
"The theatre of the absurd continues with UNESCO and today the organization has made its most bizarre decision by saying the people of Israel have no connection to the Temple Mount and the Western Wall.
"Obviously they have never read the Bible, but I would advise UNESCO members to visit the Arch of Titus in Rome, where they can see what the Romans brought to Rome after they destroyed and looted the Temple Mount two thousand years ago. One can see engraved on the arch the seven-branched menorah, which is the symbol of the Jewish people as well as the symbol of the Jewish State today."
Indeed they can.
In response to this outright slap in the face, Israel has suspended all cooperation with UNESCO.
One cannot help but wonder what the next logical step is for the United Nations, but it's not difficult to see what direction it is heading. If they can deny the deep, historic connection the Jews have with the Temple Mount, then why not go all the way? Why not deny the existence of the Jews period?
After all, that's the alternate reality Satan is pushing down the world's throat—the same alternate reality that gave birth to the notion that the Jews have no connection to the Temple Mount.
10/24/2016 — From the "Pitchfork and Torches" Department...
Well-known evangelist David Wilkerson (1931–2011) received numerous prophetic visions during his lifetime, many concerning God's judgment of America. Starting in about 1973, Wilkerson received visions that cover various aspects of this judgment, but one particular part of his visions that is beginning to ring troublingly true right now is his vision of thousands of fires burning in cities all over the United States and riots that would sweep the nation.
As you may be aware, there has been violence at several Donald Trump rallies during this election campaign, and even though it has come out these incidents were deliberately orchestrated and choreographed by the Clinton black ops team, it doesn't bode well for what may happen in the wake of this year's presidential election. There is clearly a lot of pent-up anger and frustration among Americans, and Donald Trump seems to have a flair for making incendiary remarks that stoke the flames of that anger and frustration.
The growing fear among many is that if Trump loses the election in November, the flames of that anger and frustration will erupt in violent protests and demonstrations across the country, and some feel this could be the fulfillment of David Wilkerson's prophetic vision. Now, I'm not saying it will be or won't be, but what is clearly true is that God's abandonment judgment on our nation is in full swing, and the eruption of widespread social unrest seems almost inevitable whoever is elected—and the country is actively preparing for it.
What the public has gotten an earful of most recently is Trump's oft-repeated claims that the election is rigged, and his reluctance to state that he would accept the results if he loses a close election. According to Matt Dallek, associate professor of political management at George Washington University:
"I think Trump is playing with fire and he has been playing with fire for many, many months. And I think it is coming to a crescendo."
There are even those who are openly promoting retaliatory reactions, such as Milwaukee sheriff David Clarke, who got roars of approval from a pro-Trump crowd recently with the following ominous statement:
"I'll continue to say it. It is pitchfork and torches time in America."
In other words, he was openly inciting violence in support of Trump.
I think we would do well to remind ourselves of two things:
1. We are commanded to pray for our leaders (1 Tim. 2:1–4).
2. God raises up and removes leaders to perform His will (Dan. 2:21).
God knows the hearts of both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, and has already ordained and prepared the role the next president will play in His prophetic plan.
And no matter what His plan entails, that's a comforting thought to keep in mind as you go to vote in a couple of weeks.
10/31/2016 — From the "I'll Be Praying for You" Department...
I have actually heard people pray things like this:
"Oh Lord, we pray for our poor brothers and sisters in Christ who are trapped in oppressive regimes around the world like North Korea, where they have no freedom and face constant persecution for the cause of Christ. We pray that your Spirit would move in this place, the worst place on earth to be a Christian."
The worst place on earth to be a Christian. Oh really? Apparently you'll never hear that coming from a North Korean believer.
According to Dr. Eric Foley, head of Voice of the Martyrs Korea, North Korea is more open to the gospel than many people believe. In spite of the fact that Bibles, churches, and prayer meetings are outlawed and believers have been executed or sent to forced labor camps, the underground Church in North Korea is apparently alive and growing strong.
Foley used to tell believers who had escaped from North Korea that American Christians were praying for them, but their response shocked him:
"You pray for us? We pray for you!"
According to defectors, Christians in North Korea pray for the Church in America and South Korea, where in their view Christians have so much money and freedom that they have too little of Christ. Foley says North Koreans don't pray for the kinds of freedoms Americans have, because freedom in Christ is something that cannot be taken from them.
According to Foley:
"They don't pray for a regime change. They don't pray for freedom and money. They pray for more of Christ and to mirror more of Christ in their life. That's what we should be praying for ourselves as well."
Straight up—this article blew me away when I first read it. But after some reflection, I couldn't understand why I should have been so blown away. These people are simply living out the following verse:
20I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
(Galatians 2:20 AKJV)
It's amazing what happens when believers actually live the way the Bible tells us to live.
11/7/2016 — From the "Temple? What Temple?" Department...
A few weeks ago, the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) passed a resolution that effectively denied any Jewish connection with Jerusalem, the Temple Mount, and the surrounding area including the Western Wall. Even though no competent, credible archaeologist or biblical historian of virtually any stripe questions the fact that the Temple Mount was the site of two previous Jewish temples—the first dating back to the days of King David and the second dating back to days of Christ, the resolution refers to the Temple Mount, the Western Wall, and other landmarks only by their Arabic names, and presumes to claim the Jews have no historical ties to these sites whatsoever.
This is in full, unwavering support of the fantasy commonly referred to as the Palestinian narrative, a piece of fiction believed only by the Palestinians and those who blindly support them. In this fiction, the Jews are cruel, unscrupulous usurpers who are illegally occupying land rightfully belonging to the poor, oppressed Palestinians, and the Temple Mount is one of the holiest sites in Islam and the Jews have tried to steal it from them and claim it as their own.
The Palestinian party line is essentially "Temple? What temple?"
Sadly (and incredibly), many American church denominations have signed on to this fiction and used it as a reason to join in the rising tide of the BDS movement, an organized effort to boycott, divest from, and sanction Israel for their "occupation" of "Palestinian land."
One group, however, is making an effort to rectify this situation. Some might call it symbolic and somewhat tongue-in-cheek, but I don't care.
I love it.
A Jerusalem-based Evangelical Christian group called the International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem (ICEJ) is calling on Christians the world over to take Bibles and highlight passages that demonstrate clearly the Jewish connection to the land of Israel, the city of Jerusalem, and the Temple Mount, and then mail these Bibles to UNESCO headquarters in Paris, preferably with a letter expressing their displeasure and disagreement. The ICEJ's website says:
"We are hoping to inundate UNESCO with tens of thousands of Bibles to drive home the message that Jews and Christians have a much more genuine, historic connection to Jerusalem and the Temple than Muslims."
Can I get an amen?
ICEJ Executive Director Dr. Jürgen Bühler had this to say:
"Most of us view these diplomats as being principled and well-educated. But apparently, some of them forgot their history lessons and we are sending them Bibles to refresh their memory. Even worse, some of these representatives are deliberately trying to erase the Jewish and Christian bonds to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem and other revered sites in the Land of Israel. Hopefully, our campaign will give our nations' envoys at UNESCO the courage to stand up to the anti-Semites in their midst."
The Creator of the heavens and the earth had this to say:
18In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, To your seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates.
(Genesis 15:18 AKJV)
Can I get another amen?
11/14/2016 — From the "Don't Even Think About It" Department...
As I have said, this is an important story to watch over the next two months because it has game-changing prophetic implications. It was somewhat under the radar up until recently, but now the cat is pretty much out of the proverbial bag and many important people are eyeballing it with intense interest.
For months, it has been the speculation of key individuals that during President Obama's final two months in office, he might make a play for a forced two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians. This would come in the form of a UN Security Council resolution, which would more or less be the ultimate ultimatum. This would amount to the UN saying:
"That's it...enough of these useless negotiations that never get us anywhere and never will. You guys have until 20?? to implement the following two-state solution or we'll send in troops and do it for you. Here are the details..."
The key point about such a UN Security Council resolution passed before Inauguration Day on January 20, 2017 is that the incoming American president couldn't stop it or change it. He'd be stuck with it, regardless of whatever plans he might have had in mind when elected.
So a pot of political intrigue is stewing as we speak. Israeli leaders are acutely aware of the situation, and are already planning strategies to thwart such an effort. Now, aides to President-elect Donald Trump are warning Obama officials not to pursue any adventures in Middle-Eastern politics before Trump takes office in January, basically telling them "don't even think about it."
One problem is that Obama—besides being pro-Palestinian, anti-Israel, and possessed of a petty personal vendetta against Israel's current prime minister—dreams of a slapping a shiny gold star on his presidential legacy (which it conspicuously lacks), and a two-state solution, which could easily be spun as "Peace in the Middle East," would be the most tempting brass ring of all.
On the other hand, political strategists in Israel who are aware of Obama's fantasies (and who are ten times smarter than he is) are hard at work devising ways to make sure this particular fantasy never comes to fruition. (But even if Obama fails, who knows...maybe Trump can work his deal-making magic and forge a similar treaty on his own.)
For students of Bible prophecy, this is huge because if such a resolution were passed (and in reality that's still a big if), it would certainly have a deadline—most likely two or three years. Since the forced implementation of such a treaty with Israel is quite likely exactly what is being spoken of by the prophet Daniel in Daniel 9:27—the event that officially triggers the Tribulation, and the Rapture must precede the beginning of the Tribulation, this would amount to one thing:
An NLT (no later than) date for the Rapture.
11/21/2016 — From the "Payback" Department...
I knew I had to comment on this little piece of news as soon as I saw it.
On October 3, I posted a Weekly Commentary about Aaron and Melissa Klein, a Christian couple who owned a bakery in a small town in Oregon who politely declined to bake a cake supporting gay marriage for a lesbian couple in 2013, and subsequently were taken to court, fined, harassed, and ultimately forced to close their bakery.
I suppose there are more theologically refined ways to say it, but who cares.
God just got a little payback on their behalf.
Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian was the Oregon official who spearheaded the attack on the Kleins in 2013, and this wasn't the first time he had done this sort of thing. Avakian has been involved in other cases of going after businesses who failed to operate in a manner deemed supportive of the LGBT agenda. He also attacked a bar in Portland, Oregon that declined to serve transgendered people because it didn't want to get a reputation as a gay bar. That establishment was also heavily fined and ultimately forced to close down.
Well, it seems that our Mr. Avakian had high hopes of moving up the ladder of power in the Beaver State, and recently ran for Secretary of State in Oregon. Mind you, Oregon is an extremely liberal state. In fact, if you were watching the election returns in the recent presidential election (or any presidential election in America, for that matter), you may have noticed that the only "blue wall" Hillary Clinton had was the West Coast: Washington, Oregon, and California. Deep blue, solid Democrat, liberal to a fault. Always has been.
But apparently Brad Avakian is too liberal for Oregon.
Liberal Mr. Avakian lost his bid to become Secretary of State in one of the most liberal states in the country, which elected his Republican opponent—the first time in 14 years a Republican has been elected to any state office in Oregon.
This is a bit like ISIS being kicked out of Al Qaeda for being too violent.
Seriously. God is faithful, and the Brad Avakians of the world would do well to note the following:
God honors those who honor Him and honor His Word.
And so when someone attacks His children, don't be surprised if He gets a little payback on their behalf.
11/28/2016 — From the "Trump Effect" Department...
As everyone knows, the United States has been in embroiled in political turmoil for some number of months over an extremely divisive and contentious presidential campaign, and now an extremely divisive and contentious election that saw a conservative, nationalist Donald Trump win by an apparently wide margin in terms of electoral votes. Although Michigan's count is still not 100 percent official, most are satisfied the final count will still favor Trump and give him that state's 16 electoral votes. Assuming it does, the final electoral vote tally would be 306 to 232.
But now the electoral votes in Wisconsin (10), Michigan (16), and Pennsylvania (20) are being scrutinized over accusations of alleged electronic voting irregularities, and the Clinton machine has thrown its support behind a three-state recount. Today, there is talk about the (hopefully remote) possibility of the electoral votes from all three of these states being disqualified, a move that would drop Trump to 260, which is below the magic number of 270, the majority needed to win the election.
Note that this wouldn't automatically give the election to Hillary Clinton—it would just steal it from Trump. This, however, is apparently good enough to satisfy die-hard Clinton supporters, whose new slogan seems to be:
"Waaaa...if we don't get our way, we're gonna set fire to something!"
What it would do is invoke obscure election-related rules and procedures that would basically boil down to choosing somebody to be president (and from the looks of things, presumably someone whose name is not Donald J. Trump).
And what would be the result? I'm glad you asked.
It would make the Civil War look like a schoolyard scuffle.
One interesting effect Trump's election is having, however, is that it seems to be giving power and impetus to conservative, right-wing, nationalistic politicians around the world.
According to an article in the New York Times, a decidedly Trumpesque François Fillon has arisen as a serious presidential hopeful in France, espousing a highly nationalistic and some say xenophobic platform that includes strictly limiting immigration (especially Muslims) and a return to "French values," a move generally interpreted as greatly reducing Islamic influence in France.
*Note: According to reliable sources, Fillon has no plans to build a wall along the French-German border.
But clearly the fiery, Islamophobic rhetoric, coupled with good ol' bleu, blanc, et rouge "Vive la France!" nationalism is striking a nerve with beaucoup des French voters.
What is interesting from a prophetic perspective, however, is how the Trump Effect may actually be plowing the ground for the rise of the ultimate hard-line nationalist demagogue—a man who will have a plan to defeat the world's enemies and solve the world's problems, and who will apparently have the brains and the brawn to get 'er done.
And the world will fall at his feet and worship him.
12/5/2016 — From the "Stick a Fork in It" Department...
As I have mentioned in a couple of previous Weekly Commentaries, there have been whispers and rumors of a last-ditch effort by the Obama administration to either force or at least not veto someone else's effort to force an agreement down the throats of the Israelis and the Palestinians concerning the framework of a two-state solution, which could come in the form of a binding UN Security Council resolution.
Mere weeks ago, it seemed to be a very real possibility—especially with the anticipation of a Clinton victory in the U.S. presidential election. But some are now speculating that since Donald Trump will be the next president, any last-minute efforts at such a resolution might force Trump to take a hard-line position against it and effectively spoil his chances to act as a neutral facilitator in any future negotiations.
Well, it appears you can stick a fork in this one—it's done. According to reports such as this article in the Times of Israel, Obama is signaling pretty clearly that he is ruling out any such effort at the United Nations during his last few weeks as president. Assuming that turns out to be the case, that means Trump would be starting with a relatively clean slate in regard to any negotiations toward the elusive the two-state solution.
Trump has indicated that he is certainly interested in being the president to finally see a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict become reality. And although he has talked more in terms of being a neutral arbiter working in the background rather than one of the primary negotiators, I'm sure nothing would please The Donald more than the exquisite irony of succeeding where Bill Clinton failed, now that he has succeeded where Hillary Clinton failed.
Trump has indicated he may call upon his Jewish son-in-law Jared Kushner (husband of daughter Ivanka) to be the one to broker a deal.
And, Lord willing, I hope to have more to say about that soon.
12/12/2016 — From the "Ho Ho Ho, Merry Generic Non-Religious Holiday!" Department...
'Tis the season to be...intolerant of anything that smacks of Christianity, if an incident in a St. Augustine, Florida restaurant is anything to go by.
The restaurant, Michael's Tasting Room, is owned by Michael Lugo, who made what I'd like to think is a perfectly reasonable decision to play Christmas background music in his restaurant during the current Christmas season. I have no doubt that he fully expected it would go over nicely enough with most of his customers. What he didn't expect, however, was the following nasty note left by one particular Grinch of a customer:
"Christmas music was offensive. Consider playing 'holiday' music or [songs] less religious themed."
So, Christmas carols are offensive. Oh, but "holiday" music is OK. So, away with "Away in a Manger" and in with "Winter Wonderland." Forget "The First Noel," and regale us with "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer." Deep-six "Silent Night" and give us "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town."
OK, let's cut to the chase: This customer was not offended by the music.
• The only thing that's offensive about "Away in a Manger" is the One who was lying in that manger.
• The only thing that's offensive about "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" is the One whose birth those herald angels were singing about.
• The only thing that's offensive about "Joy to the World" is the One who brought that joy to the world.
The only thing that's offensive about Christmas music is Christ.
Actually, the customer is absolutely right. Christ is offensive:
33Behold, I lay in Zion a stumbling stone and a rock of offense; and no one who believes in him will be disappointed.
(Romans 9:33 / emphasis added)
Jesus is that rock of offense, and the world hated Him enough to kill Him.
They hated Him then, and as incidents like this reaffirm, they still do. Not only do they still hate Him, but they still hate those who love Him.
So, those who insist on making the days leading up to December 25 their celebration of a generic, non-religious holiday while whining about other people offending their generic, non-religious sensitivities can do us all a big favor by moving to a place where Christmas is exclusively about Santa making a list, elves making toys, and reindeer pulling a sleigh.
Like the North Pole.
12/19/2016 — From the "Bah! Humbug!" Department...
It seems as though Donald Trump is developing a knack for getting on the nerves of the political left wing. This time, it's his choice for U.S. ambassador to Israel.
"Two-state solution?! Bah! Humbug!"
And the liberal left is choking on it.
Trump tapped David Friedman, a Jewish bankruptcy attorney from Long Island, New York to fill the post, a move that has infuriated many both in the U.S. and in Israel. Friedman has been fairly negative about the prospects for the long-cherished two-state solution, the darling of those who seek to carve Israel up and serve her to her enemies:
"...a two-state solution is not a priority [for president-elect Trump]. I don't think he is wed to any particularly outcome. A two-state solution is a way, but it's not the only way."
The problem, of course is that for the Palestinians and those who support them, it is the only way.
The only way, that is, to their ultimate goal of destroying Israel and taking all the land.
Whether this slows down the drive to a two-state solution or not remains to be seen; but since I am convinced that this will lead to the treaty spoken of by the prophet Daniel and that will trigger the Tribulation, this definitely warrants close attention.