THE INTERESTING INFORMATION CHRISTIAN MINISTRY
CONFIRMING BIBLICAL TRUTH
APRIL 25, 2018
SECTION 1 – INTERESTTING INFORMATION WEEKLY ARTILCLES
SECTION 2 – SUMMARIES/BOOK REVIEWS/SPECIAL ARTICLES/CHRISTIAN LINKS
INTERESTING INFORMATION 4/25/2018
DOUBLE CLICK OR COPY TO BROWSER
URL - BIBLICAL TRUTHS ABOUT HELL YOU MAY NOT KNOW
URL - WHAT REALLY HAPPENED IN SODOM AND GOMORRAH ?
THIS IS THE FAITH OF OUR FATHERS
THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK: “Keep the Faith, but not to yourself” – Our Daily Bread
· Walking away from Faith
· The wonders of Israel
· Majority of Pastors to not discipline church members
· Women welcome Hillary as “Newest member of our Coven”
· So much for condom education
· Extra Biblical writings support the Bible’s history
· THE REWARDS OF FOLLOWING JESUS
WALKING AWAY FROM FAITH
The Christian Post – Mar. 30, 2018 -- Every Christian knows someone who is pulling away from faith in Jesus Christ. The young person brought up in a Christian home who now has little interest in the faith he once professed; the enthusiastic volunteer who seems close to leaving the church; the friend who has suffered great loss and now wonders why he or she should believe at all.
What we see and experience is a microcosm of a well-documented trend in our culture: People are abandoning faith in growing numbers.
Back in the 1930s, only 5% of Americans did not identify with any religion. In 1990 that number had risen to 8%, a modest increase after more than half a century.
But these last years have brought a dramatic change. By 2008, the number of Americans not identifying with any religion had risen to 12%, and by 2012, it had risen to 20%, with the number among millennials around 30%.
To put this in perspective, it is important to say that the number of Americans committed to living for Christ seems to be holding steady. But Americans who have been Christians in name only are casting aside the faith they once professed and leaving the church in large numbers.
Walking away from faith is not new, and it should not take us by surprise. Our Lord taught that some seed springs up quickly, but having no root, it withers away (Mk 4:5-6, 16-17).
Many of our Lord's disciples turned back and no longer followed Him (John 6:66). The best known of these is Judas Iscariot. Judas heard the finest teaching, saw the clearest evidence and, in Jesus, had the perfect example. He was connected with a small group of disciples, and he was engaged in ministry. He was a gospel preacher and had been sent out by Christ Himself on a missionary endeavor. Yet this man walked away from the faith he had once professed. How was that possible?
The first sign we are given of the defection in Judas' heart came at a dinner given in honor of Jesus, after He raised Lazarus from the dead. Overwhelmed with gratitude, Mary came up with a lavish and innovative way to express her love for Jesus. She brought a jar of ointment worth about a year's wages, and poured it out in its entirety over our Lord.
Judas objected: 'Why was this ointment not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor? (John 12:5). For Judas, the cost of the perfume made what Mary did wrong. For Mary, it was the cost of the perfume that made what she did right. Jesus was a means to an end for Judas, and it is only a matter of time before a person who tries to co-opt Jesus to another cause will give Him up.
The Bible makes clear that the devil played a major role in Judas' defection. Satan entered into him (Luke 22:34; John 13:2; John 13:27), and this has caused some to view Judas as a victim of powers beyond his control.
But Satan cannot gain a foothold in the lives of people who are walking in the light with Jesus. He only has access when we open the door, and Judas opened himself to satanic invasion by holding onto unconfessed sin. He had been stealing from the bag (John 12:6), and at no time was this confessed, not even when he sat next to our Lord at the Last Supper.
But perhaps the most striking factor in Judas' defection was his persistent resistance to the love of Jesus. At Bethany, our Lord reached out to show Judas the value of what Mary had done in anointing Him, describing it as a beautiful thing. In the Upper Room, Jesus washed the feet of Judas, and at the Last Supper, He handed Judas the bread, which was a sign and offer of friendship.
Even in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus was reaching out Judas in love. Before the traitor was able to plant his kiss on the cheek of Jesus identified himself to the arresting party, (John 18:4-5). Our Lord was giving Himself into the hands of his enemies and so the kiss would serve no purpose whatever.
So Jesus reached out in love again: "Judas, would you betray the Son of Man with a kiss?" (Luke 22:48). Even in the garden, our Lord was inviting Judas back. The resolve of this man to resist the love of Christ must have been very great indeed.
There is a fascinating contrast between the story of Judas and the story of the thief on the cross. These men had lived very different lives; one as a follower of Jesus, the other as a criminal. Both died on the same day, but their destinations on the other side of death were very different. The thief who was on the brink of hell, ended up in heaven, and Judas, who for three years had come as close to heaven as is possible in this life, ended up in hell.
At a time when many are walking away from faith we do well to remember that the distinguishing mark of those who truly belong to Christ is that the hold their original confidence firm to the end (Hebrews 3:14). They hear the voice of the shepherd and they follow him (John 10:27). These sheep will never perish. Make sure you are among them.
As the Children of Israel prepared to enter the Promised Land, Joshua instructs them to sanctify themselves, as God is about to perform the miracles of parting the Jordan River and the conquest of the Land of Israel. In our own era, the Lord has continued to perform miracles resulting in the rebirth and flourishing of the State of Israel. The Children of Israel have been gathered from around the world and delivered to the Land where Jewish sovereignty has been restored! With God’s continued deliverance and blessings, the once barren and desolate Land of Israel is blooming before our eyes, and the People of Israel and the nation continues to absorb immigrants from the four corners of the earth.
MAJORITY OF PASTORS DO NOT DISCIPLINE CHURCH MEMBERS (Excerpt)
The majority of pastors say in a new survey that they have never disciplined a church member.
Christian Headline News – Apr. 10, 2018 -- According to Lifeway Research’s new poll, which surveyed some 1,000 pastors ministers and priests, about 55 percent said they have not “formally disciplined” a church member.
The poll also said that only 8 percent of those surveyed said a church member had been disciplined in the last year. About 20 percent said it had been at least three years since a member had been disciplined.
Nearly 20 percent said the church does not have “official policies” for disciplining church members.
“It’s one of the topics that churches rarely talk about,” said Scott McConnell, executive director at Lifeway.
The poll also said that churches were attendance was more than 100 people were more likely to have disciplined church members in the past year than churches with less than 100 people in attendance.
Sixty-five percent of pastors said they both had fewer than 50 members in the church and no member had been disciplined while they had served as head of the church.
With churches of attendance less than 100, 63 percent said the same: no disciplinary action for church members. In churches with attendance more than 100 people, 48 percent said the same.
The poll also found that evangelical pastors were more likely than other pastors to say their churches had disciplined members within the past year.
"There's some red tape involved for churches," McConnell said. "It is not easy to be kicked out of a church.”
WOMEN WELCOME HILLARY AS “NEWEST MEMBER OF OUR COVEN”
WND – Apr. 10, 2018 -- Hillary Clinton’s harshest critics have described her as a witch. Or worse. But now a women’s group called the Wing has welcomed the twice-failed presidential candidate as the “newest member of our coven,” William Briggs writes at The Stream.
He cites a story in the women’s publication The Cut headlined “Last Night, The Wing Welcomed Hillary Clinton Into Their Coven.”
One of the Wing’s founders, Audrey Gelman, said, “We’re a coven, not a sorority.” Gelman’s mother is actress Lena Dunham’s therapist, and the younger Gelman was reportedly the inspiration for Dunham’s show “Girls.”
The New York Times reported the “club” has more than 1,500 members who pay some $3,000 a year for access to the Wing’s chapters in Brooklyn and Washington, and soon in Los Angeles, San Francisco and other cities.
The article noted a New York Times Magazine staff editor is also a Wing member.
“Over the course of 18 months, the club raised more than $10 million from investors, most recently from a group led by Tony Florence, a general partner at the venture capital firm NEA,” the Times said.
“As a man, he has been allowed to visit the Wing only when members are not present.”
Briggs says Clinton’s visit to the “club,” or “coven” as Gelman describes it, was to receive “an honorary lifetime Wing membership,” which comes, “we are told, with free cosmetics.”
“It’s unclear whether Hillary viewed that as an insult. Most likely not. She tweeted of her time at the coven that she was ‘inspired by [their] passion and commitment,'” Briggs writes.
The Cut, which calls itself a “premier destination for women with stylish minds,” reported the Wing welcomed Clinton “into their coven” as the “newest member” in front of an audience of 400.
Gelman and “Call Your Girlfriend” host Aminatou Sow discussed Clinton’s “legacy,” which Gelman described as a woman who demands “to live her life on her own terms.”
“That was pretty great,” Clinton said.
And Hillary calls herself a “Christian”!
SO MUCH FOR CONDOM EDUCATION
You won't believe what latest stupid teen epidemic is
WND - Apr. 2, 2018 -- Don’t run in the halls. Don’t chew gum in class. Don’t pass notes to your neighbor. And, whatever you do, don’t snort condoms.
Wait a minute! “Don’t snort condoms?”
That’s right. It’s the latest stupid teen craze, with thousands of kids involved, if YouTube videos and the warnings of school officials around the country are any indication.
School officials in San Antonio are holding meetings with parents to let them know about the dangerous activities their kids might be involved in – one of them, snorting condoms.
What’s it all about? It started as a YouTube Challenge back in 2013, but it’s hotter than ever. The idea is to inhale through one nostril an unfurled latex condom and then pull it through your mouth. Why? So you can become a YouTube star, of course.
As Texas state education specialist Stephen Enriquez put it, “These days our teens are doing everything for likes, views, and subscribers. As graphic as it is, we have to show parents because teens are going online looking for challenges and recreating them.”
It’s the latest potentially deadly kid fad since swallowing liquid laundry detergent pods.
Maybe it’s time for the schools to offer classes on what not to do with condoms.
Yes, choking is an obvious hazard, especially while focused on video recording your stupid trick.
But perhaps this is just another lifestyle choice?
In a piece for Forbes (yes, Forbes Magazine), Bruce Y. Lee had this thought about the craze: “Gee, what could go wrong when inhaling an object made of latex rubber and covered in lubricant and spermicide? Well, first of all, here’s the list of things that you should be snorting up your nose – air.”
EXTRA BIBLICAL WRITINGS SUPPORT THE BIBLES HISTORY
Genesis 11:8 “So the LORD scattered them abroad from there over the face of all the earth, and they ceased building the city.”
Creation Moments – Apr. 7, 2018 -- Many people today tend to dismiss the early chapters of Genesis as legend rather than history. However, if the Bible's story of the Flood and the Tower of Babel are not history there are some established historical facts that have no explanation.
According to the Bible, after the great Flood, people multiplied but failed to scatter over the face of the earth as commanded by God. Having one language, most of the people stayed in one location and built a great city. It was not until God confused their language that they scattered across the earth. If these events did not take place, how do we explain the fact that a 6th century B.C. Chinese writer describes the ultimate God Who created all things in much the same way as an ancient Egyptian writer? And why would these descriptions match 8th century B.C. Greek writings? While it is true that each of these cultures had their unique gods, their ancient writings about the Creator use very special language. Lao-tzu was an 8th century B.C. writer who described the ultimate God as eternal and self-existing. Likewise, an ancient Egyptian writer described the ultimate God as the source of everything in the heavens and on earth as well as all life.
If man was not once of one culture and language, how did all these ancient writers each get the same story to tell? The similarities between these descriptions and those of other cultures bear witness to the historicity of even the earliest parts of Genesis.
THE REWARDS OF FOLLOWING JESUS
No sane person would willingly and knowingly follow someone off a cliff, because this goes against the natural instinct of self-preservation. And if we do choose a path of self-sacrifice, there’s usually a higher good we seek to achieve. It could be some benefit we hope to enjoy in the end, an ideal we think is more important than our own life, or a way to help other people.
When a rich young ruler was challenged to give up what he most valued and follow the Lord, he was devastated because the price was too high. From his perspective, such an action was the equivalent of following Jesus off a cliff. He didn’t have eyes to see what Christ was promising him in exchange—treasure in heaven. He was unwilling to sacrifice his earthly security, comfort, and position in order to receive eternal benefits.
In contrast, the disciples had left everything—families, vocations, financial security, and positions in society—to pursue Christ, because they considered their Messiah more valuable. As they watched the rich young man walk away, Jesus assured them that their sacrifice for righteousness’ sake would not be overlooked. They would one day sit on 12 thrones, judging the 12 tribes of Israel in Christ’s glorious kingdom.
We serve a truly gracious Savior who not only saves unworthy sinners like us but also promises His followers rewards. Some of these benefits are available now in the form of Christ’s peace and joy filling our hearts, and the sweet fellowship of our faith community. But in eternity, He will give us much more than we have ever sacrificed to Him.
In Touch Ministry
INTERESTING INFORMATION 4/18/2018
DOUBLE CLICK OR COPY TO BROWSER
URL - ARE WE ENTERING THE FINAL STAGE OF BIBLICAL PROPHECY?
ANCIENT ISRAEL: SIGHTS, SOUNDS, AND WONDERS
· Does Hell really exist?
· King David’s formative years
· Why the Jews are proof God exists
· Newly minted Trump-Cyrus Temple coin prophetic confirmation
· Can Man become immortal?
· TRIUMPH THROUGH FAILURE
DOES HELL ACTUALLY EXIST?
Charisma News – Apr. 5, 2018 -- The concept of a person spending an eternity in hell is so grave to me that I do not believe it is intellectually possible for me to fully conceive it. As a matter of fact—I believe that most Christians live as though there is no hell, because if we truly believed its existence, we would do much more to spread the good news of Jesus.
The debate over the existence of hell was just made front and center recently when Pope Francis allegedly stated that bad souls just disappear, and hell does not exist.
To quote the story: Eugenio Scalfari, 93, wrote an article in Thursday's La Repubblica. He asked the pope where "bad souls" go and where they are punished. Scalfari quoted the pope as saying:
"They are not punished. Those who repent obtain God's forgiveness and take their place among the ranks of those who contemplate him, but those who do not repent and cannot be forgiven disappear. A hell doesn't exist, the disappearance of sinning souls exists."
Whether the pope said this or not is not the concern of this article. My main concern is what the Bible teaches about this grave subject (I believe that Scripture trumps church tradition, creeds, catechisms, church confessions, canon law and statements or teachings by popes and other prelates).
Truly, if there is a hell, then a wise person would make a lifestyle choice to avoid an eternity in that place; if there is no hell—or if all people will eventually be reconciled to God irrespective of what they believe—then Jesus died on the cross in vain to save us and or it is not necessary to follow Jesus to reap the benefits of the cross.
What the Old Testament Jews Believed
Since this is a brief article, I cannot go into detail regarding all the texts about hell in both testaments. That being said, the Old Testament account of hell is sparse. However, the Jews of antiquity believed in such a place reserved to punish evildoers, as noted by the prophet Isaiah (66:24):
"And they shall go forth and look on the corpses of the men who have transgressed against Me. For their worm shall not die, nor shall their fire be quenched. And they shall be an abhorrence to all flesh."
The New Testament Teachings of Jesus and the Apostles
That Jesus believed in the existence of an eternal hell for unbelievers is incontrovertible.
Hence, if a person doesn't believe it exists—either they think they know more about eternity than Jesus or they think Jesus was mistaken— (I would never bet against Jesus!)
Jesus made it clear there was an eternal state of suffering for unbelievers when He told the story of "the Rich man and Lazarus" (Luke 16:19-21). Although cults like the Jehovah's Witnesses (Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, who believe in soul annihilation) wrest the Scriptures and say this was a parable, Luke says "There was a rich man ..." If it was a parable, the New Testament writer would have mentioned it was a parable as they did in other passages (see Luke 18:1; 9; Mark 4:2, 13:30).
In this sober story, the rich man died and went to a place of torment—being fully conscious while suffering in agony in the flames of hell. Jesus also warned followers to remove everything in their life that causes them to stumble or they risked going to hell, into the unquenchable fire where their worm does not die and their fire is not quenched (Mark 9:42-49). He also said to the Pharisees "You serpents! You generation of vipers! How can you escape the judgment of hell?" (Matt. 23:33).
The belief in an eternal hell and judgment was carried over by the apostles of Christ. The apostle Paul warned that "we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, which should result in the fear of the Lord" (2 Cor. 5:10,11). The judgment seat for unbelievers is unpacked more fully by the apostle John as shown in the book of Revelation (20:11-15).
This eschatological passage regarding the final judgment is worth reading here:
Then I saw a great white throne and Him who was seated on it. From His face the earth and the heavens fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God. Books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. The dead were judged according to their works as recorded in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one by his works. Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. Anyone whose name was not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire (Rev. 20:11-15).
Notice—there were "books" opened for unbelievers and only one book ("The Book of Life") for believers. Why is this? Because all the sins and acts of disobedience against God are recorded and shown to unbelievers to demonstrate the justice of God before their final judgement; and only one book is needed for (perhaps) billions of Christ followers because their sins have been washed away through faith in the blood of Christ's vicarious death on the cross.
Hence, the only thing recorded in "The Book of Life" are the "names" (not the sins) of those who have received Jesus as Lord of their life (John 1:12,13; Rom. 10:9,10).
Finally, Jesus said that hell was not created for humanity but for the devil and his angels (Matt. 25:41). God is not willing for any (humans) to perish but all to come to repentance because Jesus did not come to condemn the world but to save it (2 Pet. 3:19; John 3:17).
Consequently, the choice of where a person spends eternity is up to them; believe in Jesus, and you will not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16).
"He who believes in the Son has eternal life. He who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him" (John 3:36).
Israel365 – Feb. 11, 2018 -- King David was just one of the great leaders of Israel who worked as a shepherd before stepping into a public leadership role. Working as a shepherd in Biblical times, as well as working as a modern-day shepherd pictured above, is a great responsibility. Each individual sheep must be cared for whilst tending to the flock as a whole. Life as a shepherd is the perfect training for leaders who must reign over an entire nation as well as maintain concern and compassion for each individual under their leadership.
WHY THE JEWS ARE PROOF GOD EXISTS
"Blessed are you, Israel! Who is like you, a people saved by the LORD? He is your shield and helper and your glorious sword. Your enemies will cower before you, and you will tread on their heights" (Deut. 33:29).
Charisma News – Mar. 27, 2018 -- When former Israeli National Security Adviser Yossi Cohen was named head of the Mossad, Israel's intelligence agency, he noted that Israel was only established because of the help of God and that God's help is just as needed today. And Cohen was right! It has often been said that Israel's secret weapon is faith. More accurately, Israel's greatest weapon is God, yet it is our faith in Him that activates His intervention.
In Deuteronomy, after Moses had concluded blessing each of the 12 tribes of Israel, just prior to his death, Moses gave a general blessing to the entire nation. He said: "Blessed are you, Israel! Who is like you, a people saved by the LORD? He is your shield and helper and your glorious sword. Your enemies will cower before you, and you will tread on their heights" (Deut. 33:29).
The Jewish sages explain that it is precisely because Israel looks to God as our "shield and helper" that God becomes our "glorious sword," allowing us to overcome our enemies. Indeed, our faith is what has helped Israel overcome overwhelming odds and is the reason why we are still here.
In the 1800s, the kaiser of Prussia asked his head adviser if he could prove the existence of God. Otto Von Bismarck replied, "The Jews, sir, the Jews." There is no natural explanation for how a tiny group of people, twice exiled from their land, and persecuted repeatedly for millennia, could still be around today.
Moreover, the fact that the Jewish people have returned to their homeland, a feat never accomplished by any other nation, is nothing less than miraculous. As Moses said, "Who is like you, a people saved by the Lord?" The only explanation for the miracle of the existence of the Jewish people and the State of Israel, is the existence of God.
However, what I love most about this verse is that it instills hope and inspires faith for the future. Just as God has helped Israel beat the odds for the past 70 years, we can be sure that He will continue to do so for the next 70 years—and longer! Even as Israel faces unprecedented challenges today, we can trust in God for unparalleled salvation.
We are watching history unfold before our very eyes. We are watching ancient prophecies come to fruition. And like Israel, when we activate our faith, we can activate God's intervention during these tumultuous times. The God of Israel is great. The God of Israel lives. And the God of Israel will protect and guide all who call to Him.
As the Scriptures say: "The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth" (Ps. 145:18). Let us say Amen!
NEWLY MINTED TRUMP-CYRUS-THIRD TEMPLE COIN PROPHETIC CONFIRMATION DURING ISRAEL'S 70TH ANNIVERSARY (Excerpt)
Charisma News – Apr. 13, 2018 -- A coin minted to celebrate Israel's 70th birthday has Donald Trump's profile superimposed over King Cyrus on one side and the third temple on the other. It's called the temple coin.
"The fact that Orthodox Jews wanted to honor Trump for recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and they minted this coin—a one-half silver shekel—is as if they are confirming this word given by Christians as valid.
"The great significance is that on one side the coin has the image of Cyrus and Trump. On the other side it has the image of the third temple yet to be built. The one half-silver shekel during the time of the temple was required to be paid as an offering by each male of a Jewish household during Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement) that was earmarked for the upkeep of the holy temple! It is the hope of the Orthodox Jews who minted this coin that this coin will be actually used to pay that offering again for the upkeep of the third temple," Marcus says.
Many modern-day prophets, including Lance Wallnau and Mak Taylor, prophesied Trump would be like King Cyrus of the Bible.
The prophet Isaiah wrote: "Thus says the Lord to Cyrus, His anointed, whose right hand I have held—to subdue nations before him and to loosen the loins of kings, to open doors before him so that the gates will not be shut: I will go before you and make the crooked places straight; I will break in pieces the gates of bronze and shatter the bars of iron. And I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places so that you may know that I, the Lord, who calls you by your name, am the God of Israel" (Isa. 45:1-3).
The coin, a joint effort of the nascent Sanhedrin, the Mikdash (Temple) Educational Center and the United Temple Movements, was prepared to honor Israel's 70th anniversary next week on April 19, Breaking Israel News reports.
"In the context of the coin, we are expressing gratitude for President Trump's bold decision to transfer the American Embassy to Jerusalem, thereby recognizing King David's capital and the site of Solomon's temple as the true capital of Israel," Mordechai Persoff, head of the Mikdash Educational Center, a non-profit organization for education about the Temple, tells Breaking Israel News.
"They are non-Jewish leaders who played an essential role in the return of the Jews to Jerusalem. Hopefully, Trump will continue in this path and, like Cyrus, play a central role in the building of the temple," Persoff says.
Marcus says the coin is an example of further biblical prophecies coming to fruition.
"We are truly living in the end times," Marcus says. "The parable of the fig tree blooming speaks of Israel becoming a nation again. The recapturing of Jerusalem during the six-day war helped serve as the fulfillment of Jesus' prophecy. He said, 'This generation will not pass away without seeing the millennial kingdom of God established in the earth.'"
CAN MAN BECOME IMMORTAL?
Psalm 23:4 “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.”
Creation Moments – Apr. 9, 2018 -- When Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden, they brought death into the world. Death is an enemy, but for the believer who has eternal life, death provides a doorway out of a sinful world and into Christ's presence. Modern science has learned that our cells themselves carry the information that will result in their death one day. Add to this the wear and tear of everyday life, and accidents, and death becomes inevitable.
However, some modern scientists believe that they are within reach of doubling our lifespans. Some even think they can do away with death completely. Each time a cell divides the tips of the DNA become shorter. When the DNA chains shorten to a preprogrammed length, the cell dies instead of dividing again. Researchers have now discovered a protein that can restore those tips, theoretically preventing a timed death. Scientists have also learned how to inject new neurons into the brain to restore it to youth. They are also experimenting with methods of growing new organs for transplantation. These and other procedures, they say, could end death forever. Unfortunately, some of these advances come at the cost of the lives of aborted babies and lab-grown human embryos.
Can man reverse the death that has resulted from his own sin? Only one Man can. Jesus Christ, the man-God, gives eternal life to all who believe in Him as their Lord and Savior and makes death but a shadow for the believer.
TRIUMPH THROUGH FAILURE
We’ve all left footprints in the valley of failure. What matters is how we respond afterwards. Do we give up and live a defeated life, or do we believe God can restore us?
The story of Peter’s failure and subsequent restoration gives us tremendous encouragement. Jesus warned that Peter would fall short, but He also prayed for the disciple’s faith not to fail. Jesus assured Peter ahead of time that his failure would not be the end of the story—he would stand up again and strengthen the others (Luke 22:31-32).
The Lord knew that before Peter could be molded into a strong yet humble leader, his pride and self-confidence had to be brought low and his heart broken. Although Satan wanted to sift the disciple to make him useless, Christ commandeered the process to make Peter useful.
In the same way, God can use our failures to prepare us to be more effective servants for Him. Although we may feel as though we have slipped from His grasp, Jesus has promised that nothing and no one can separate us from His love. He sits at the Father’s right hand, always interceding for us (Rom. 8:34).
When we wallow in our failures and build walls around our heart to deny the Lord access, we are resisting much-needed brokenness and healing. If we want God to use us, we must allow Him to get rid of the chaff that keeps us from being who He desires us to be. But if we will humbly turn to the Lord, He’ll give us a fresh start and a renewed understanding of His goodness and purpose.
In Touch Ministry
SECTION II - SPECIAL ARTICLES/ BOOK REVIEWS
IN THIS SECTION:
· WHAT HAPPENS AFTER WE DIE? (WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS)
· WHAT’S IN A NAME?
· "BOB PIERCE - THIS ONE THING I DO" - A BOOKREVIEW/SUMMARY
· "THE HIDDEN CODES OF THE BIBLE" - A BOOK REVIEW/SUMMARY
· "SIGNS OF THE TIME” - A BOOK REVIEW/SUMMARY
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER WE DIE?
By D.E. Davis
For Christians, we are told in Scripture in 2Cr 5:8 that to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. For those who turn away from God, we are told that they are eternally separated from God and go to a place called Hell. Rev 14:11 says that the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever.
The question that everyone ponders is: What really happens after we die? Do we just lay dormant until the Lord takes us to be with him or until judgement is handed out at the Great White Throne as called out in Rev. 20:11? Are we conscience? Do we feel, touch, think, recognize loved ones, know what is happening around us? All questions that we have ask ourselves, no doubt, at some time in our life.
My own personal review of the Scriptures has led me to believe that after we die, even though our body may be dead and buried, our Spirit is alive and fully conscience. Chuck Missler likens this state of conscienceness to the software that runs the Computer; once the hardware goes, the software remains intact and available for further applications.
There are two illustrations in the Bible that makes it clear as to what happens after death, when we're in the spirit.
The first one is illustrated in the Luke account of Lazarus and the rich man in Chapter 16. After death, Lazarus, a man of God, is escorted into Abraham’s Bosom, a holding compartment in Hell for the Believers prior to the Cross. The non-believing rich man was "buried" and went into a separate compartment in Hell (Hades), apart from Abraham’s Bosom, where he was in Torment according to Scripture. Both were in a Spirit state; yet by the account, they could see each other and speak to each other.
The second account is in Revelation, where John is taken (in the Spirit) to Heaven to see those things that shall come to pass prior to the return of Jesus Christ to the Earth, or Second Coming (not the Rapture).
I had to conclude from the study, based on the following Scripture, that all of the senses we have here on earth will be with us throughout eternity, even unto death.
· THE ABILITY TO LOOK/SEE - Luke 16:23;Rev. 1:12;4:1,4; 5:1,2; 6:1,2,8,9; 7:1,2; 8:2; 9:1,17; 10:1,5; 13:1,2,3;14:1,6; 15:1,2; 16:13; 17:3,6; 18:1; 19:11,17,19; 20:1,4,11,12; 21:1,2,22; 22:8
· THE ABILITY TO HEAR - Rev. 1:10; 4:1; 5:11; 6:1,3,5,6,7; 7:4; 9:13,16; 10:4,8; 12:10; 14:2,13; 16:1,5,7; 18:4; 19:1,6; 21: 3; 22:8
· THE ABILITY TO BEHOLD ( to obtain knowledge of: understand: perceive) - Rev. 5:6,11; 6:5,8,12; 7:9; 8:13; 13:11
· THE ABILITY TO REASON - Luke 16:30
· THE ABILITY TO CRY (even though there will be no more crying in Heaven) - Rev. 5:4,5; Luke 16:24
· THE ABILITY TO SPEAK - Rev. 5:13; 10:9; 21:6,15; Luke 16:24, 29,30,31
· THE ABILITY TO FEEL/TOUCH - Luke 16:23, 24,25
· THE ABILITY TO REMEMBER - Luke 16:25
· THE ABILITY TO WONDER - Rev. 17:6
· THE ABILITY TO WRITE - Rev. 1:11; 10:4; 19:9
· THE ABILITY TO QUESTION - Rev. 7:13
· THE ABILITY TO TAKE (THE BOOK/ROD) - Rev. 10:8,9,10
· THE ABILITY TO FALL (ON KNEES) - Rev. 19:10; 22:8
· THE ABILITY TO STAND - Rev. 13:1
· THE ABILITY TO WORSHIP - Rev. 19:10; 22:8
· THE ABILITY TO PERFORM TASKS - Rev. 11:1
God has promised in 1 Thess 4:16 and 1 Cor. 15:52,53 that one day, we shall be reunited with Him in body and will be transformed and conformed to Him - in the twinkling of an eye. We are also told in Scripture that we shall see Him face to face- see the Lamb that was slain for you and me. We know by His Word, that we will Praise Him, Worship Him and Rule with Him.
One thing in the study that I found extremely fascinating was the difference in treatment between Lazarus and the non-believing rich man. Scripture says that Lazarus was escorted to Heaven by an Angel, but there is no indication in Scripture about how the rich man arrived at Hell. Could it be that God had a specific purpose why He chose not to tell us in Scripture?
Finally, knowing that others may have varying interpretations of these Scriptures, I strongly urge you to review the Scriptures yourselves to determine what you find as the truth according to God’s Word.
WHAT’S IN A NAME?
For those who wish you had some other name because you don't like the name you were given, you had better think twice. It is most likely that the name your parents picked out for you was not their choice but God's choice. Let’ s face it, the word of the Lord is true. That's why in Eph. 1:4, God proclaimed that He had chosen us from before the very beginning of the world.
If you follow the Genealogy of Adam in Genesis, Chapter 5 (*) you will receive an insight into what importance God put in names - It's an exciting message:
Mahalalel The blessed God
Jared Shall come down
Methuselah His Death shall bring
Lamech The Despairing
Noah Rest, Comfort
Now let us look at God’s Plan for Redemption:
"Man (is) appointed mortal sorrow; (but) the Blessed God shall come down teaching (that) His death shall bring (the) despairing rest."
Let us now look at the Genealogy of Abraham (*):
(*) Source: Chuck Missler’s Briefing package: “A Walk Thru the Bible”
WELL YOU SAY! BUT THAT WAS ALL OLD TESTAMENT AND WOULDN'T BE APPLICABLE FOR TODAY - WOULD IT?
Well, let us see.................. As a Christian, did God not choose you by name at the same time he chose Adam, Seth, Enosh, Kenan, Mahalalel, Jared, Enoch, Methuselah, Lamech, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Joseph - before the very foundation of the world? If God had a purpose for their name, would you expect anything less for your name since He chose you at the same time?
As a Christian, You ought to thank God daily that you, by your given name, was written in the Lamb's book of life before the very foundation of the world and that you will be a partaker in all the promises of Rev 21:27.
Within the last couple of years, researchers have found many startling discoveries through the use of super computers, specifically, hidden codes that God supernaturally placed within the Hebrew text of the Bible. Over 2000 years ago, the names of historical and current leader’s names were placed in the Bible. Such names as Adolph Hitler, Eichmann, Arafat, Peres, Rabin, Rabin's murderer Amir, Ben-Zion Netanyahu, Saddan Hussein, George Bush, Schwarzkoph, Peter Arnet (CNN), Timithy McVeigh, Bill Clinton.
Do you think that God would limit His calling out to just those who had a highly visible historical impact on this world? There is no doubt that He had a purpose in doing this, if nothing else, just to get your attention that He is the Creator; that He alone knows the beginning from the end.
It is my firm belief that as we advance further with our computer technology and peel back the layers of the Hebrew text of the scriptures, we will make many more startling and exciting discoveries. One being that God has written each and every one of our names in His Word.
HERE IS WHAT GOD SAID: Isaiah 66:22 "For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the LORD, so shall your seed and your name remain."
BOOK REVIEW by D. E. Davis (September 1997)
BOB PIERCE -"THIS ONE THING I DO"
By Franklin Graham with Jeanette Lockerbie
It is amazing the worlds that open up to an individual, once the Power of the Holy Spirit comes upon him. Just three years ago, where once I was blind to Missions, to all the inspired men and women God has called to service and the multitude of people all over the world who have been saved, new worlds are ever opening to me to see how awesome the power of God is in our Christian lives.
Such was the power and strength of faith Bob Pierce had in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. It is difficult for me to even attempt to assess where God has put Bob along with other past great men of the faith, but from what I read about his life with Christ, he certainly had his eyes focused on Jesus! I personally feel inadequate and humbled to even put in words, my thoughts about this man. Bob was a man Blessed by God. I feel sad that I never had an opportunity to know him, but look forward to meeting him one day in heaven.
If ever there was a verse of scripture that represented Bob Pierce, it had to be the title of this book as taken from Philippians 3:13,14 ".......this one thing I do,....I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Jesus Christ."
Bob was raised in Los Angeles and at the age of 12, gave his life to Christ and was baptized in the Nazarene Church. "God simply called me to give my heart to Jesus, and I followed Him." He died in 1978 of leukemia but lived his life for Christ in between in between those dates as if Christ was coming tomorrow and he still had to witness to the whole world before dawn broke. Throughout his career, he dedicated his life mainly to Missions and over the years was responsible for founding such World re-noun programs as "World Vision", an organization dedicated to meeting the emergency needs in crisis areas such as Korea after the Korean war. During that time of need, he established a Korean Orphanage, serving over 30 thousand Korean war orphans. Bob was also responsible for starting the World re-noun Korean Orphan's Choir. As an outgrowth of "World Vision" he founded "World Medical Mission" which covered all emergency medical needs in countries all over the world which had no medical facilities. He was also founder of "Samaritan's Purse" and organization dedicated to funding World emergency need, no matter where they were. These organizations are still meeting the needs of those in crisis today.
If his work through these organizations was not enough, he became a United Nations War Correspondent during World War II; was Co-founder for "Youth for Christ"; and became a Motion Picture producer/Radio program host, author and a lecturer, but first and last, he always considered himself an evangelist! Even though Bob knew that he was "extraordinarily gifted by God, he was never impressed with himself - he considered himself just an earthly vessel, available at all times for the exclusive use of the Lord".
In his own words, he had "many flaws, failings but had abundant faith in God who lives and cares about people."
If I had to pick four areas of the Christian life that I feel truly represented Bob Pierce, they would be 1) Unwavering Faith, 2) Compassion for others, 3) Obedience to God and 4) Commitment to accomplish the Will of God in his life.
From the Beginning, Bob knew his calling was for Missions to the Asian Countries. His first mission led him through Hawaii to Hong Kong and eventually to China. Getting to China was his first big test of faith - he had no money, even for the first leg to Hawaii. Bob held the opinion that God knows ones needs already and if He has called you to a task, He will provide and enable you - just move out! He did just that and went to the L.A. airport that day without any money in his pocket. His faith paid off as God provided the funding for each leg of his trip just at the moment he needed it. This was the norm rather than the exception throughout his career as an evangelist. What ever it was, where ever it was, if God called, Bob would act no matter what the circumstance......he knew that God would always provide.....and He did!
Bob had a compassion for the spiritually and physically suffering of the world. "He was the friend of the little people, the forgotten, the hurting, the maimed, the unheard and the unsung". Bob's theme was "Let my heart be broken with the things that break the heart of God". It was Bob's personal belief that "wherever you find men and women who really love Jesus Christ, you find the compassion of Christ spilling out of them to meet human need." Over the years World Vision, Samaritan's Purse and other organizations like them; one in particular, Mission Aviation Fellowship Pilots (MAF), who flew Missionaries around the world in crisis situations, helped so many helpless and needy men, women and children. They knew first hand the healing power of God.
Bob dared it all to be obedient to the Lord's call. Once he had in focus the mission that God wanted him to accomplish, he followed in Faith to bring the unsaved to Christ. It was his opinion that " If you are an ambassador, act like one!"- no matter where you are. Bob would bring to memory how other great men of Faith were obedient even in the face of death. During World War II, a young South Korean Pastor, Mr. Im was mistaken for a North Korean Communist and imprisoned. During his internment, he would go around camp singing "Jesus Loves Me" and other Christian songs. He not only uplifted and inspired other fellow Christian prisoners to come together, he brought many more to Christ. Together he and another prisoner, Chaplain Voelkel, established a Bible Study where over 6,000 prisoners finished a six month Bible Study. Six Hundred (600) of those finishing the Bible Study became pastors and came back to Korea to preach the Gospel. In another instance, he related how a Korean school teacher was put to death in front of his students because of his faith and obedience to the Lord.
To be an ambassador for the Lord "is one of the greatest things that could ever have happened to anyone - to let God put a fish hook into you so deep that there is no way of ever getting off the hook."
"Bob did one thing all of his life, and that was to lead people to the foot of the Cross where they would put their faith in a risen Lord Jesus Christ. He lived every minute completely amazed that God could use him. No matter how much he was able to do in how many places, it was never enough." This was the kind of commitment Bob made to Jesus; "to commit yourself, give yourself away to God irrevocably, forever. Say to Him, go ahead and burn me up. Spend me. Eat me up. Use me for you Glory." And that's exactly what he did.
Being a man of God was not always easy for Bob and he paid a high price. In one measure or another he had to forsake his wife, his family, his Mother and Father, his brothers and sisters and other worldly possessions to follow Jesus. He not only lost his health, he lost his Daughter, Sharon, to death.
Committing your life to Christ in a Godless society is never easy; many times you feel like you may be the only one putting your life, your self image, your social acceptance on the line. As Bob came to realize, ". Someone has to go and pay that humiliating price of literally letting your ego be stomped on- not just pushed in and suppressed, but laid out there for people to stomp on. We need to do this by the grace of God with love and patience: sow the seed on rocky soil, nurture it, and maybe never be applauded."
Committing your life to Christ really comes down to this; What really matters
to you in Life?
On his death bed in the City of Hope, Bob left us this one message - "I don't care what you have attempted. What you have succeeded at, or what has been your work in Christ's name while you are here on earth - only one thing matters when you have reached the last step before you go to stand before Christ:
- Did you tell men and women who Jesus is?
- Did you bring them to some comprehension of His redeeming love?
- Did you make it plain to them that He alone can pay their way to heaven throughout His atoning death on the cross?"
Such was the life of a man of God, Bob Pierce.
HIDDEN CODES OF THE BIBLE
References: Grant R. Jeffrey - "The Signature of God"- RECOMMENDED READING
Other reading: "The Hebrew Factor" by Yacov Rambsel
Prepared by D. E. Davis
Daniel 12: 4 - "But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased."
Here is undeniable proof, the third in the series, that every word, every letter and every punctuation in Bible text was put their by the inspiration of God. It gives new meaning to the words "increase knowledge". It's just one of the many signs, and without a doubt, the most exciting revelation that God said he would reveal to man in the "end time". As you will see, God has put his signature throughout the Bible, has revealed History before it ever happened, all through hidden codes that were supernaturally placed into text which was written over 2,000 years ago; which could only be found with today's computer technological advances. The codes are found in what scholars call "Equidistant Letter Sequences" or ESL. That is, each sequential letter in an encoded word or phrase was found the same distance apart numerically; The exact interval designed by God.
Actually, the discovery of hidden codes in scripture dates back to before WWI and it was not until 1988 that the use of computers were able to detect a significant amount of coding in scripture. Since then, the research that Grant Jeffrey and others have done has just exploded and new discoveries are happening every day.
Here is a summary of what has been found and outlined in Grant's book, referenced above. It is my understanding that he is in the process of writing another book to tell what he has found subsequent to "The Signature of God".
Luke 21:15 - " For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay (refute) nor resist."
Proverbs 25:2 - "It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honor of kings is to search out a matter."
What follows is what most of the human race would find hard to believe. It unfathomable to think that the Hebrew Bible, containing 304,805 Hebrew letters, written by 40 individuals could contain hidden messages that if one letter was taken out of the text, one word was removed, the hidden message could not be revealed......yet the message has been sustained for over 2,000 years and has been revealed to man just as Jesus said it would be. Jesus has actually placed His name and other messages about Himself into text which proves he is the creator of all; King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
God has personally signed scriptures throughout the Old and New Testaments in various ways. For example in the Old Testament, he has encoded his name, Jesus, in the following scripture:
God has also encoded unbelievable detail about many of the things we read about and which touch our lives daily. For example, he outlines:
PLACES AND THINGS
· Gen. 2: 4-10 - The key word "Eden" was spelled out sixteen (16) times in the span of 379 Hebrew letters. The letters were all equidistant from each other.
·Gen. 2 - In this chapter which deals with the garden of Eden, scientists found encoded in the Hebrew text, Twenty-five (25) names of trees that were in the
Garden of Eden.
· Gen. 1:1 - Starting with the first appearance of the Hebrew letter "Tav", the word "Torah" was found every 50th letter.
· Ex. 1: 1 - Again, starting with the first appearance of the letter "Tav" and counting every 50th letter, the word "Torah" was spelled. Num./Deut. - In the book of Numbers the word "Torah" was found spelled backwards every 50th letter. In the book of Deuteronomy, "Torah" was found again spelled backwards, but this time every forty-ninth (49) letter.
NAMES AND EVENTS
· Deut. 10: 17-22 - Beginning with the second to last appearance of the Hebrew letter "bet" in this passage, they found every Thirteenth (13) letter, the phrase "b'yam marah Auschwitz" which means "in the bitter sea of Auschwitz." Also encoded in this passage were the names of the other Nazi Concentration camp, "Belsen".
· Deut. 33:21 - Beginning with the letter (resh) that appeared in the Hebrew word "Yisreal," and counting every twenty-second (22) letter from the left to right they found the phrase "re'tzach alm" discribing the Holocaust, which when translated, means "a people cry murder, slaughter."
· Adolph Hitler
· Deut. 10: 17-22 - The word "Hitler" spelled out in Hebrew was found every twenty-second (22) letter.
· Deut. 33:16 - Beginning with the first appearance of the Hebrew letter "mem" and every two hundred and forty-sixth (246) letter from left to right you find that the coded letters spelled out the phrase, "Melek Natzim," which translates as the "king of the Nazis."
· Deut. 32:52 - Beginning with the appearance of the first letter (aleph) and counting from left to right every six hundred and seventy (670) letters, the name "Aik'man" is spelled, which is the Hebrew form of the name "Eichmann."
· Egyptian President Anwar Sadat
· "Sadat occurred together with the name of the leader of the Moslem Brotherhood assassinating team that killed him.......it contained the year of his assassination, 1981, and the words "president," "gunfire," "shot'" and 'Murder".
· Desert Storm
· Beginning in Gen. 1:7 and continuing through the rest of Genesis, Grant Jeffrey indicated at the Prophesy Conference in Irvine,Ca. on 27 Sept. 1996 that they had recently found information in hidden code in scripture relating to Desert Storm. I believe more details will be available in Grant's next book.
· The French Revolution
· Gen. 39,41 - "Another passage in the Book of Genesis revealed a cluster of encoded words that deals with the French Revolution. The following words are clustered ogether" "Mapecha HaSarfatit" which spells "the French Revolution" in Hebrew, "Louis," the name of the French king, and the word "Beit (house of Bourbon,") his royal dynasty. In the same cluster were the following words: "Hamarseilles" (the name of the French anthem) and the word "Bastillia" (the infamous French prison for political prisoners........"
OTHER HISTORICAL INFORMATION
· Word pairs - "In their initial experiment, .......the scientists arbitrarily chose three hundred (300) Hebrew word-pairs that were logically related in meaning, such as hammer and anvil, or tree and leaf, or man and woman." ".....the researchers were astonished to find that every single word-pair had been located in Genesis in close proximity to each other."
· King David's Ancestors
· Gen. 28 - " Every one of the five Hebrew names of these ancestor of King
David (Pharez, Zerah, Boaz, Obed, Jesse) were found encoded at forty-nine (49) letter intervals, hidden within the text of Genesis 38".
· Famous Jewish Rabbi - "The Jewish people celebrate the memory of their famous sages by commemorating their date of death. Incredibly, the computer program found every single one of the sixty-six names of these famous rabbis embedded in the text of Genesis paired at significantly close proximity with their actual date of birth or their date of death."
IS THE HEBREW BIBLE UNIQUE TO GOD' S INSPIRED EMBEDDED CODES?
Grant points out that "The researchers attempted to reproduce these results by running the computer program on other religious Hebrew texts outside the Bible, including the Samaritan Pentateuch. .......the researchers could not detect word pairs in the Samaritan Pentateuch or any other Hebrew text outside the Bible. In fact, an exhaustive analysis reveals that no other Hebrew text outside the Old testament contains these mysterious codes, not even the Hebrew apocryphal books written during the four hundred years before the birth of Christ"
A WORD OF CAUTION
"No one can search the Torah using these codes to foretell future events. The reason is that it is impossible to extract the encoded information unless you already know what the future facts are." "The prophet Isaiah warned against false prophets and declared that only God can Prophesy future events accurately
(Isa. 46: 9,10).
"Computer tapes are now available so that anyone with a computer can personally verify the existence of these codes beneath the text of the Scriptures.
As Christians, we can stand firm in the word and shout for joy. God has given us "the words and the wisdom that none of our adversaries will be able to refute or contradict", no matter how much they try!
PRAISE THE LORD!
SIGNS OF THE TIME
References: Grant R. Jeffrey - "The Signature of God"- RECOMMENDED READING
Prepared by D. E. Davis
June 10, 1997
How do we know that Jesus is the one true God when there are so many religions, cultures and cults that claim that they serve the one true god? How about Buddha, Allah?
Scripture says that God alone knows the beginning from the end. The way that God establishes His authority is through Biblical Prophesy. There are over 500 prophesies that were prophesied over 2,000 years ago that have all come to pass. There are still some Old Testament that have yet have to be fulfilled (Daniel Ezekiel), but there has never been an event prophesied that has not come to pass in it’s time. 100% accuracy tells us that the God of the Bible is the only true God. No one else in the history of the world, living or dead, can make this claim.
In Matthew 24:3, just before Jesus' ascension into heaven, the disciples of Jesus ask Him what would be the sign of His second coming. Over the centuries various groups have attempted to guess when Christ would return to the earth to claim His inheritance as promised throughout scripture. As we know, no one has been right yet!. God clearly states in Matthew 24:36 that no man, not even the angels, know the day or the time when Christ will return. Only God the Father knows.
ACT 17:11- Exhorts you to daily review the scriptures to see if what is being said is true.
----------------------THE SIGNS OF THE TIME-------------------
Grant Jeffrey has done a wonderful job of providing critical information about events that are happening in this generation that all Christians need to know; Events that were prophesied over 2,500 years ago. Approximately 90% of the material contained herein was extracted and summarized from Grant's book. I highly recommend reading this book as it contains so much more that you will want to know.
THE REBIRTH OF ISRAEL
The rebirth of Israel was prophesied in several scriptures throughout the Bible. Isaiah 66: 8 predicted that Israel would be born again in "one" day. Ezekiel 4:3-6 and Levitcus 26:18 foretold the exact number of days that it would take Israel to re-establish themselves as a nation in the last days. ( The exact calculation can be found in Grant Jeffrey's book referenced above). On May 14, 1948, the Jews proclaimed their independence of the reborn state of Israel.....The exact day that was predicted over twenty-five (25) centuries ago.......No other ancient nation ever ceased to exist for a period of centuries and then returned to take its place on the stage of world history."
PRESENT ARAB-ISRAELI CONFLICT
In Psalms 83:2-8, God inspired King David to predict that upon Israel's rebirth as a nation it would be immediately surrounded by their enemies. The modern names of those nations named in scripture include Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Syria....the nations that have now joined the Palestinians in their attempt to destroy Israel.
In Gen. 12: 3, God has promised to punish those nations that come against Israel. "I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee; and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed."
RESTORATION OF THE HEBREW LANGUAGE
When Israel was captured by Nebuchadnezzar in approx. 562 B.C., Israel was no longer allowed to speak the Hebrew language, but had to learn the language of the Chaldeans. The Lord predicted, however, through Zephaniah 3:9, that he would restore a pure language to Israel so that they may "serve him with one consent". It was in the early part of this Century that the Hebrew language was revived from the dead language. Today, Hebrew is a living language to over 5 million Israelis.
THE FERTILITY OF ISRAEL
In Isaiah 27:6; 35:7 and Joel 2:23, the Lord prophesied through these prophets that the deserted, unproductive, barren land of Israel would once again become productive in the last days and that Israel would experience tremendous increases of rain. Ever since Israel has returned to the land, they have flourished in the land and now supply over 90 percent of the citrus fruit consumed in Europe. Rainfall has increased by more than "10 percent every decade for the last century and Israel has planted in excess of two hundred (200) million trees and transformed the complete environment of the Promised Land." According to the United Nations, Israel is now "the most agriculturally efficient land on earth."
THE UNWALLED CITY
Ezekiel 38:11 speaks of the future invasion of Gog and Magog (Russia) saying "And thou shalt say, I will go up to the land of un-walled villages; I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls and having neither bars nor gates". Grant explains that "even army bases and Israel's settlements in the West Bank and Gaza have no walls today.........How could Ezekiel have known twenty-five centuries ago that the development of modern weapons such as bombs, airplanes and missiles, would have made walls and gates irrelevant for defensive purposes in the last days. In the ancient past even small villages as well as cities depended on walls for defense against invading armies."
PLANS FOR REBUILDING OF THE TEMPLE
Revelations 11:1, 2 foretells of Israel rebuilding the Temple in the last days. There is much controversy between the Israelis and the Muslim's because the Dome of the Rock (Al-Aqsa Mosque) it is believed, sits on the very spot where the Temple is suppose to be built. In recent years, however, aerial Infra-red photography shows that this may not be the case. Ezekiel 44:14-18, tell about the sacred vessels and linen robes that must be used in the Temple. "The Temple Institute in Jerusalem has already prepared over 75 of the objects, vessels, and linen garments required for future Temple service.......over 500 men from the tribe of Levi have already been trained to fulfill the duties of Temple worship and sacrifice."
Just recently in the Washington Post on May 28, 1997, it was reported that a 10 month old heifer named "Melody" is the first red heifer to be born in Israel in over 2,000 years. "In ancient times, the ashes of a red heifer were mixed with spring water to purify high priests before they entered the Temple."
THE REBUILDING OF BABYLON
We know that the old city of Babylon (now called Iraq) will be built again in the end times because Isaiah 13:6, 19 foretells of its destruction. In Isaiah 34:8-10 it is prophesied that the rebuilt City of Babylon will burn for ever.
"As unlikely as it seems, the Iraqi government of Saddam Hussein has spent over one billion dollars rebuilding the ancient city of Babylon and intends that it will become the center of their future renewed Babylonian Empire. Interestingly, the whole city of Babylon was built over an underground lake of asphalt and oil."
THE ANOINTING OIL
The prophet Daniel prophesied in Dan. 9:24 that the when Jesus returns, that the most Holy of Holies will be anointed with the anointing oil. "One of the five ingredients, afars' mon, was thought lost forever, when the Temple was destroyed in A.D. 70 and the only two groves of afars'mon trees in existence were burned
to the ground. Incredibly, several years ago, archeologists in Israel found a clay flask buried near the Dead Sea caves filled with the ancient oil of anointing. Scientists confirmed that the oil is two thousand years old and is composed of the precise ingredients described in Exodus 30:25,26."
Matthew 24:7 prophesied that in the last days "For nation shall rise against nation and Kingdom against Kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilence, and earthquakes, in divers (various) places." Grand Jeffrey writes regarding these matters:
· Pestilence - In 1991, the Central Intelligence Agency produced a report which "concluded that up to 75% of the population of Africa living in the area south of the Sahara Desert may become infected with AIDS over the next 12 years. This will mean the death by AIDS of over three hundred million people in Africa alone. In July 1991, the South African Medical Journal reported that a staggering 47% of black male and female blood donors tested positive for AIDS during 1989."
In Nov. 1996, the Associated Press reported that "Sexually transmitted diseases are diagnosed 12 million times a year in the United States - including a staggering 3 million cases among teen-agers".
· Famine - The United Nations today "claim that over thirty million in Africa are now at risk of dying from the most devastating famine in this century. The UN estimates that one billion people are in danger of starvation while another billion lack proper nutrition. North American food reserves (grain and corn) are at the lowest level in sixty years."
· Major killer earthquakes – “Major Killer earthquakes (7.2 or greater on the Richter scale) occurred only once per decade throughout history until our century. However, since A. D. 1900, the growth in major earthquakes has been relentless. From 1900 to 1949 it averaged three major quakes per decade. From 1949 the increase became awesome with 9 killer quakes in the 1950's; 13 in the 1960's; 56 in the 1970's and an amazing 74 major quakes in the 1980's. Finally, in the 1990's, at the present rate, we will experience 125 major killer quakes in this decade."
WORLD WIDE COMMUNICATION
In Revelation 11:9,10, it is prophesied that during the tribulation period, the antichrist will have the two witnesses that God sent killed and their bodies will lay in the street for three and a half days while the whole world watches.
Did not the whole world watch Desert Storm on CNN television? With all the technological advances in telecommunications, including the recent opening of the World Wide Net to our computer industry, any event happening in any part of the world can now be viewed while it is happening. The prophesy of the two witnesses could literally be fulfilled today. This could not have happened just 10 or 15 years ago.
INCREASED KNOWLEDGE AND TRAVEL
Daniel 12:4 prophesies how much knowledge and travel will increase in the end time. "But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the Book, even to the time of the end: Many shall run to and fro and knowledge shall be increased."
Today, it is estimated that "Human knowledge is growing so quickly that it literally doubles every twenty-four months." With the discovery through the use of modern "Super" computers by Grant Jeffrey and other researchers of the hidden codes that God supernaturally designed into the original Hebrew text of the Torah describing not only the history of the world in advance, but also verifying his Authority through His personal signature throughout his scripture, we realize that God chose this generation to reveal this unique aspect about himself.
It is also amazing that in this century, we have gone from horses to cars, from cars to supersonic spacecraft; not only can we now travel the world in a matter of hours, but in the case of the U.S. Space Shuttle Discovery, we can now travel at speeds in excess of eighteen thousand miles per hour.
REVIVAL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE
Daniel 2:40-44 predicts that the old Roman Empire will be revived in the end times into a ten Nation alliance. We currently see the foundation being laid today through the European Economic Community. "In 1957, six (6) Countries signed the Treaty of Rome laying the foundation for the future United States of Europe.............Since then the Maastricht Treaty consolidated the fifteen (15) Nations of the European Union into the worlds first superstate." All it will take is the re-shuffling and/or the consolidation of Nations to bring this prophesy to a literal fulfillment.
ODDS THAT THESE PROPHECIES WERE FULFILLED BY CHANCE IN THIS GENERATION
"In the Bible there are several types of generations. One generation is defined as the length of life of the average person - seventy or eighty years. However, a generation of governing is usually defined as forty years,...........During the last two thousand years since the days of Christ, there were fifty such forty-year generations. Therefore, the odds are one chance in fifty that any one of these specific prophecies happened by chance in our generation rather than some other generation."
"The odds that more than one event happening in our life time are:
"Another way of looking at this is that the chance that the prophets of the Bible correctly guessed these prophecies is also one in 97,500 trillion............in other words, it is simply impossible that men alone could
have written the Bible without the supernatural assistance and inspiration of God."
Matthew 24:32-35 - "Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled. Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away."
Luke 21:28 - "And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh."
ANTI-CHRIST TO BE REVEALED
As of today, no one knows who the Anti-Christ is, but we do know what God has told us about him:
Many people try to spiritualize or say the events prophesied in the Bible are just symbolic. Any doubt about how God handles these prophetic events should have been erased on May 14,1948. God is literally fulfilling scriptural prophesy before our very eyes. Can we expect anything less for those few remaining prophesies for which He has promised the world; 1) the removal of the one who restrains the man of lawlessness/Sin (the rapture of the Church), 2) His second coming to take possession of His inheritance, 3) The millennial kingdom and 4) the new heaven and new earth.
Ezekiel 33:6 - "But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman's hand."