THE INTERESTING INFORMATION CHRISTIAN MINISTRY
CONFIRMING BIBLICAL TRUTH
August 14, 2019
SECTION 1 – INTERESTTING INFORMATION WEEKLY ARTILCLES
SECTION 2 – SUMMARIES/BOOK REVIEWS/SPECIAL ARTICLES/CHRISTIAN LINKS
INTERESTING INFORMATION 8/14/2019
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URL - HARDEN NOT YOUR HEART
THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK: – “Just as Ruth gleaned the fields of Boaz, we too, must glean all of God’s Word for our daily bread, giving thanks for all He has provided; knowing that God’s Word alone will sustain our every need” – Anonymous
· Every life on Earth has an expiration date
· New Philistine DNA study affirms Israel is Jewish Land
· Planned Parenthood lives up to its bloodthirsty and racist reputation
· Why fewer millennials support LGBT lifestyle each year
· The Mystery of Octopus intelligence
· ACCOUNTABLE TO GOD
EVERY LIFE ON EARTH HAS AN EXPIRATION DATE (excerpt)
The Christian Post – Aug. 4, 2019 -- It is important to note that our life in this world is but a vapor – here today and gone tomorrow (James 4:13-14). In fact, God has already determined the places we should live and the number of our days (Acts 17:26-28; Job 14:5; Psalm 139:16b). Our earthly “expiration date” may be early in life, late in life or somewhere in between. No one knows the day or the hour.
It is true that King Hezekiah begged the Lord to extend his life. In response, God gave him 15 more years. But those years were not good ones for Hezekiah or the nation of Judah (2 Kings 20:6; Isaiah 38:5). During the extra 15 years, a son named Manasseh was born, who turned out to be one of the wickedest kings in the history of Israel. His evil deeds included idolatry, human sacrifices and the pursuit of demonic powers. If Hezekiah hadn’t lived those additional 15 years, none of that would have happened.
Jesus told a parable to a large crowd one day about a man who was obsessed with trying store up treasure on earth…….God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your soul is required of you’ (Luke 12:20a, NASB)
No Man Knows the Day or the Hour
The good news is that we still have time to repent and turn to the Lord for both salvation and sanctification. But we must be sober and alert, for we do not know the time of the Lord’s return, or of our death (Mark 13:32-37). Let us no longer live as the Gentiles (-i.e., those who do not know God) do (Ephesians 4:17-24).
If you are a believer and have fallen, return to Him, confess your sins and be cleansed (1 John 1:9). Such a response softens the heart.
Those who have trusted Jesus Christ can have confidence that Christ has satisfied our account, that He has satisfied God’s wrath against our sin, that He has provided us with His own righteousness. Yet we must also know that He has done this not so we can remain in our sin, but that we can “put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:24).
No one knows the day or the hour when Jesus will return – a time when the hearts of everyone who have rejected Him will be permanently hardened. That is why the Scriptures say….
How shall we escape if we ignore such a great salvation? “This salvation, which was first announced by the Lord, was confirmed to us by those who heard Him. God also testified to it by signs, wonders and various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to His will”.(Hebrews 2:3-4)
As God’s fellow workers we urge you not to receive God’s grace in vain. For He says, ‘In the time of My favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.’ I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation. (2 Corinthians 6:1-2)
God Has Set Eternity in our Hearts
We don‘t even know our own hearts (Jeremiah 17:9-10), which makes any delay in giving ourselves into His hands a precarious matter indeed (Luke 8:15; 12:20a; 12:34).
The Bible says that God has set eternity in our hearts (Ecclesiastes 3:11). We know that He exists (Romans 1:18-20), and so we are without excuse if we ignore so great a salvation (Hebrews 2:1-3).
Jesus is worth it! He is not asking for sinless perfection. He is asking us to value His sacrifice for our sins – to value it so much that we soften our hearts toward Him and allow Him to truly be the Lord of our lives (Ephesians 4:1; Philippians 1:27a; Colossians 1:10; Hebrews 3:1-3; 7-15). You have everything to gain or everything to lose. Do it today!
NEW PHILISTINE DNA STUDY AFFIRMS THAT ISRAEL IS JEWISH LAND
Christian Headline News – July 8, 2019 -- New DNA research indicating the biblical Philistines originated from Europe bolsters the case that the land of Israel belongs to the Jewish people, says Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Scientists studied the DNA of skeletons from a 3,000-year-old Philistine cemetery and published their findings last week in the journal Science Advances. The study showed the DNA was related to the gene pool of southern Europe.
The Philistine cemetery was uncovered in 2016 in Ashkelon, in southern Israel. Ten of 108 skeletons had sufficient DNA to be used.
Netanyahu made his case on Twitter.
“A new study of DNA recovered from an ancient Philistine site in the Israeli city of Ashkelon confirms what we know from the Bible -- that the origin of the Philistines is in southern Europe,” Netanyahu wrote.
“The Bible mentions a place called Caphtor, which is probably modern-day Crete,” Netanyahu wrote. “There’s no connection between the ancient Philistines & the modern Palestinians, whose ancestors came from the Arabian Peninsula to the Land of Israel thousands of years later.”
Netanyahu concluded, “The Palestinians’ connection to the Land of Israel is nothing compared to the 4,000-year connection that the Jewish people have with the land.”
The word “Palestinian” is thought to have derived from “Philistine,” although modern-day Palestinians say they did not originate from that people group.
The Philistines often warred with the biblical Hebrews. Goliath, who was defeated and killed by David, was a Philistine.
“For more than a century, we have debated the question of where the Philistines came from,” archaeologist Eric Cline told National Geographic in an email. “Now we have the answer: Southern Europe, and probably more specifically mainland Greece, Crete, or Sardinia. This fits with what had seemed the most likely answer previously, especially judging from [the archaeological remains], and so this seems a logical finding.”
PLANNED PARENTHOOD LIVES UP TO ITS BLOODTHIRSTY AND RACIST REPUTATION (Excerpt)
Charisma News – Jul. 25, 2019 -- When an organization makes billions of dollars killing babies in the womb, it is clearly a bloodthirsty organization. And when a disproportionate number of those babies are black and Hispanic, it is clearly a racist organization.
All this is self-evident when it comes to Planned Parenthood, but recent events—the firing of Planned Parenthood's president and a blatantly racist tweet—underscore just how deeply Planned Parenthood is a bloodthirsty and racist organization.
First, there was the unexpected firing of president Leana Wen.
Her primarily failing, it appears, was that she did not have the cold-blooded killer instinct necessary to make abortion the priority of Planned Parenthood.
Perhaps it was her training as a medical doctor.
Perhaps it was a trace of the image of God that still pervaded her humanity, as much as she was still an abortion advocate.
Whatever the underlying causes may be, the broad strokes are clear. As noted by Alexandra Desanctis on National Review, "The organization has ousted its president, apparently for being insufficiently committed to pro-abortion advocacy."
Indeed, "Planned Parenthood has long sought to downplay its commitment to abortion, calling itself a health-care organization and spreading the lie that abortion is only 3 percent of its business, even as its clinics perform between one-third and half of all abortions in the U.S. annually. The group's leadership evidently believes this political moment demands more aggressive advocacy.
"And Wen wasn't up to the task."
More bluntly, cultural commentator Bill Muehlenberg put it like this: "What they are saying is this: 'You are not blood-thirsty enough! You are not meeting your quotas! More babies MUST DIE!' That is the mindset of PP. They are after blood—and money. That is their core business. That is why they exist."
When it comes to Planned Parenthood's racism, there is a spirited debate concerning the connection between Margaret Sanger, Planned Parenthood's founder, and eugenics. Sanger's conservative critics are sure that she wanted to reduce the number of black Americans (among other races and ethnicities), if not exterminate them entirely. Her defenders deny this passionately, also claiming that her interest in eugenics was not racial.
Yet even the left-leaning Time magazine admitted in 2016 that Sanger did "make some deeply disturbing statements in support of eugenics, the now-discredited movement to improve the overall health and fitness of humankind through selective breeding." She did, and very publicly. In a 1921 article, she wrote that "the most urgent problem today is how to limit and discourage the over-fertility of the mentally and physically defective." (Time also cited her defenders who claimed that she "uniformly repudiated the racist exploitation of eugenics principles.")
And the very left-leaning Snopes.com, in an article devoted to debunking a quote attributed to Sanger, uncovered this, hardly flattering quote from a 1923 New York Times article. She wrote: "Birth Control is not contraception indiscriminately and thoughtlessly practiced. It means the release and cultivation of the better racial elements in our society, and the gradual suppression, elimination and eventual extirpation of defective stocks—those human weeds which threaten the blooming of the finest flowers of American civilization."
WHY FEWER MILLENNIALS SUPPORT LGBT LIFESTYLE EACH YEAR
Charisma News – Aug. 8, 2019 -- The American Family Association (AFA, afa.net) says there is good news in the battle to protect biblical values on human sexuality, as progress is being made in the hearts and minds of millennials.
According to a new Harris Poll, AFA and The Christian Post report, Americans aged 18-34 are becoming less and less enamored with the LGBT lifestyle each year.
"I believe the reason this is happening is simple: Millennials have been inundated with the gay agenda their entire lives," said AFA President Tim Wildmon in an Action Alert to AFA's more than 1 million friends and supporters. "And 75% of them have at least one friend who is a homosexual, which means they may have personally witnessed the pathologies that come with homosexuality. It looks like the more they know about the homosexual lifestyle, the less they like what they see. It also looks as if the scales might finally be tipping in a pro-family direction on homosexuality. This should be very encouraging news to all of us involved in the culture war. We must continue to pray, love, persuade and act until our entire American culture returns to a biblical view of sexuality."
Wildmon added that, according to the survey, in 2016, 63% of Millennials considered themselves "allies" of the LGBT movement. But that number fell to 53% in 2017 and plunged to 45% last year. Today, 36% of Millennials are not comfortable when they learn a family member is homosexual—up from 29% a year ago—perhaps because they are observing the abnormalities associated with homosexuality up close. Additionally, a startling 42% of Millennial males are uncomfortable learning that their child has had a lesson on LGBT history at school or has a homosexual teacher, up from 27% just two years ago.
The pro-homosexual CEO of Harris Poll stated: "These numbers are very alarming."
AFA's Vice President of Operations Walker Wildmon added that the survey results show that young Americans should not be written off as "lost" to the culture war.
"This study is actually refreshing for a change, and it's showing that really the homosexual agenda and the sexual deviancy advocates have overplayed their hand," he said. "They've been pushing this sexual deviancy so much that your average person, even though not religious or Christian, is getting tired of it—tired of being told that homosexuals and transgender individuals have special rights beyond what the Constitution provides."
OneNewsNow, the news division of AFA, recently reported that Oregon has become the fifth state to require that pro-LGBT lessons be taught in schools. Meanwhile, parents in California have taken a stand against similar lessons being taught in their state by keeping their children home in protest. For example, a second-grade lesson informs students that NASA astronaut Sally Ride was a lesbian.
"We need to take this and use it as a winnable war moment, proving that the propaganda from the liberals eventually has its stopping point," Walker Wildmon added. "We have to continue as Christians and conservatives to promote sexual normalcy and traditional marriage as the building block of society."
THE MYSTERY OF OCTOPUS INTELLIGENCE
Psalm 92:5-6 “O Lord, how great are thy works! and thy thoughts are very deep. A brutish man knoweth not; neither doth a fool understand this.”
Creation Moments - Researchers in the 1950s and ’60s established that the octopus is quite intelligent and can learn different visual patterns. Octopi have very large brains with large areas reserved for storing information. New research has shown that they are even more intelligent than earlier studies revealed. These findings run counter to evolutionary theory, which says that intelligence evolves in social species to help them deal with social relationships. The octopus is not a social animal and operates alone.
Unlike other animals, octopi use a variety of strategies to solve the same problem. They can use their eight powerful arms to open clams, or they can drill through the shell and inject a fast-acting poison. In the laboratory, octopi kept in isolation were given a floating plastic bottle. The bored octopuses quickly devised a variety of games to play with the bottle – a sure sign of intelligence.
The Creator gave the octopus the ability to learn a lot so it could cope with its unusual way of life. Octopi begin life as tiny plankton that drift with the ocean currents. When they finally settle to the bottom, they may find themselves in any of the many habitats provided by the ocean and face any variety of predators and food sources. Thus, their Creator designed them with the ability to learn how to adapt to a large variety of habitats and situations.
ACCOUNTABLE TO GOD
Are you living as if what you do today will affect you in eternity? After “walking the aisle” and “saying the prayer,” some Christians consider that moment of salvation the beginning and end of the matter. They assume, Since my eternal destination is secure, I can simply relax and wait for heaven.
However, that is not what today’s parable teaches. Yes, heaven is secure for those who have truly repented and believe in Christ’s substitutionary death for their sins. But the way we live matters. When Jesus returns, we’ll have to give an account of what we have done with whatever He has entrusted to us.
In my youth I was told that one day, as I stood before Christ, my life would be replayed on a big screen for everyone to see all my sins. That really scared me—but now I know it’s completely unbiblical. For those who belong to Christ, the “certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us” has been nailed to the cross, and all our transgressions are forgiven (Col. 2:13-14). They will never again be dredged up, because God will remember them no more (Heb. 10:17).
What’s at stake is not salvation but rewards. And it won’t be a judgment of comparison with others. As in the parable, God entrusts each of us with talents according to our individual abilities. Everything we have is a gift from Him—time, treasure, skills, spiritual gifts, work, relationships, and His Word. Are you investing these in a way that will result in commendation from Christ when you stand before Him?
In Touch Ministry
INTERESTING INFORMATION 8/7/2019
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URL - NETFLIX SAYS 'WE'RE HERE, WE'RE QUEER'
THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK: – “He who loses money, has lost much; he who loses a friend, has lost more; he who loses faith, has lost everything.” - Apples of Gold- Julian Café, Julian, Ca. (Prov. 25:11)
· Why aren’t Pastors preaching on End-Times prophecy?
· The lover of money
· Archaeology, the Philistines, and the old Testament-DNA clues
· Are there really verses in the Bible that support abortion?
· The remarkable Hummingbird
· THE TOUCH THAT TRANSFORMS
WHY AREN'T PASTORS PREACHING ON END-TIMES PROPHECY? (Excerpt)
Charisma News – Jul. 19, 2019 -- Predictive prophecy concerning the last days seems to be a purposefully-neglected facet of ministry, for some pastors and Bible teachers. Instead of embracing and teaching the "whole counsel of God" (Acts 20:27b), many modern expositors seem to strategically avoid end-times eschatology, all together.
If congregations do not get regular biblical instruction and inspiration about the last days and our Lord's Second Coming, we and they are in danger of deception by the devil (Rev. 12:9), his demons (1 Tim. 4:1-2), or—eventually—his end-time agents, the Beast (the Antichrist, Man of Sin, Son of Destruction; 2 Thess. 2:3, 7-12; Rev. 13) and the false prophet (Rev. 16:13, 19:20).
As shepherds of the flock of God, whom the Holy Spirit has made accountable overseers, end-times study and teaching are critical (Acts 20:27-31). Pastors are admonished to faithfully "give attention to reading, exhortation, and doctrine" (1 Tim. 4:13). Avoiding the "hard to understand" parts (2 Pet. 3:15-16) is not an acceptable strategy for these end times.
Consider Paul's charge to the young pastor Timothy, regarding the last days:
I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: Preach the word, be ready in season and out of season, reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with all patience and teaching. For the time will come when people will not endure sound doctrine, but they will gather to themselves teachers in accordance with their own desires, having itching ears, and they will turn their ears away from the truth and turn to myths (2 Tim. 4:1-4).
Eschatology is not meant to encourage idle speculation or controversy. Rather, it is meant to encourage us to witness for Christ and serve Him faithfully, as we watch, wait and do business in the present until He returns in the future. Matthew 24:46, 25:13; 2 Peter 3:12.
Jesus carefully taught His disciples about future prophetic events and promises. So did His apostles Paul, Peter, James and John, along with Gospel writers Matthew, Mark and Luke.
If modern pastoral expositors are to faithfully follow their examples—rather than avoid them—they must study, understand and proclaim the eschatological events, which are yet to come
Israel365 – Nov. 12, 2018 -- The word hevel (הבל), ‘futile,’ appears many times throughout Ecclesiastes as a description of the pursuit of various physical pleasures. Although the word is translated as ‘futile,’ it literally means ‘vapor’. Vapor has the power to distort what a person sees. For example, the hot air rising from desert sands creates the mirage of an oasis. This verse observes that amassing wealth is “hevel.” More than just futile, the pursuit of wealth is similar to vapor, since it has the power to distort a person’s reality and values. The book of Ecclesiastes warns not to pursue wealth, because one who does so will never be satisfied.
ARCHAEOLOGY, THE PHILISTINES, AND THE OLD TESTAMENT: CLUES WRITTEN IN HEBREW AND ON DNA
Between 1997 and 2016, researchers at an excavation near Ashkelon in Israel examined the remains of more than one hundred humans, remains that dated from the 12th to 6th centuries before Christ. The researchers hoped to find human DNA in order to answer an old question: Who were the Philistines? Where did they come from?
As it turns out, the Philistines were exactly who the Bible says they were, and they came from where the Bible says they did.
Amos 9 speaks of God bringing up the Philistines from Caphtor, just as he brought Israel out of Egypt. Deuteronomy 2 tells us that “the Caphtorim, who came from Caphtor, destroyed [the original Canaanite inhabitants] and settled in their place.”
This brings us to the obvious question: “Where was Caphtor?” We just don’t know for sure, but the Bible does provide an interesting clue. Jeremiah called the Philistines “the remnant of the coastland of Caphtor.” The Hebrew word translated “coastland” can also mean “island.”
For this and other reasons, many archaeologists have concluded that biblical Caphtor was Crete. In fact, some modern Bible translations even render “Caphtor” as “Crete.” We can’t be completely certain that it is, but the Bible does tell us three additional things about the Philistines. First, they weren’t native to Iron Age Canaan. Second, they displaced the original inhabitants of the region. And, third, they came via the sea, that is, the Mediterranean.
Which brings me back to the excavation in Ashkelon. After analyzing DNA from the site, Michal Feldman, an archaeogeneticist at the Max Planck Institute, and Daniel Master, the head of the expedition, revealed the results. Master announced, “Our study has shown for the first time that the Philistines immigrated to this region in the 12th century (BC).”
And from where did they immigrate? According to Feldman, “This [DNA] ancestral component is derived from Europe, or to be more specific, from southern Europe, so the ancestors of the Philistines must have traveled across the Mediterranean and arrived in Ashkelon sometime between the end of the Bronze age and the beginning of the Iron age.”
Over time, the “ancestral component” became diluted as the Philistines mixed with the local Canaanite population.
All of this is pretty much in accordance with the Biblical narrative. The Philistines were ancient Israel’s principal antagonist during the period of the Judges, which coincides with the time frame Feldman and Master mention, as well as the early Monarchy. As the biblical narrative continues, they become less distinct from their Canaanite neighbors and basically drop out of the picture, except as an historical reference, as in Jeremiah.
Whenever the latest archaeological evidence confirms parts of the Biblical narrative, we are told that this does not prove the Bible is “true.” I suspect what critics are trying to say, for example in this case, is that confirming the biblical narrative’s account of the origin of the Philistines doesn’t necessarily mean the rest of the Bible is true.
Of course, it doesn’t. But the Bible is on quite a streak here, isn’t it? And, each finding further distinguishes the Biblical narrative from other religious or even ancient historical texts. The Biblical writers weren’t creating myths or recounting legends. They were relating history.
Like all history, the events it describes are interpreted within Israel’s larger story, but the events are clearly not created out of thin air to suit their agenda. These were events either witnessed or received from reliable sources.
Which is why we must say that Biblical faith is a historical faith. Many other faiths are “ways of life” or “paths to enlightenment” or something like that. The Bible is different. It tells the story of God’s dealing with His people as it unfolded in human history. Its details are grounded in real events, not in some mythological “once upon a time.”
And, along the way, we learn of other actors. You know, like the Philistines.
ARE THERE REALLY VERSES IN THE BIBLE THAT SUPPORT ABORTION?
The Christian Post – June 13, 2019 -- Many of us know the biblical case against abortion. But are there other verses that bring a different perspective on abortion?
On the pro-life side, we note that Rebekah was told that two nations were in her womb, pointing to the personhood and potential of her unborn children (Genesis 25:21-23; see also Jeremiah 1:4-5).
Similarly, John the Baptizer leapt in his mother’s womb when Miriam (Mary) arrived, with the baby Jesus in her womb (Luke 1:39-43; see also 1:15, where John would be filled with the Spirit even from his mother’s womb).
And verses like Psalm 139:13-16 speak of how the Lord carefully knit us together while we were still in the womb.
But are there other verses that might point in another direction?
There are two main passages that often come up for discussion in this context, Exodus 21:22-25 and Numbers 5:11-31. But upon close examination, neither of them supports a pro-abortion position in the least.
Let’s look first at the passage in Exodus. In the ESV it reads (with the key Hebrew phrase in italics), “When men strive together and hit a pregnant woman, so that her children come out, but there is no harm, the one who hit her shall surely be fined, as the woman's husband shall impose on him, and he shall pay as the judges determine. But if there is harm, then you shall pay life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.”
In contrast, the NRSV translates, “When people who are fighting injure a pregnant woman so that there is a miscarriage, and yet no further harm follows, the one responsible shall be fined what the woman’s husband demands, paying as much as the judges determine. If any harm follows, then you shall give life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.”
The question, then, is simple: Does the Torah consider the unborn baby to be a human life, in which case any harm done to the baby will be repaid in kind (as in eye for eye, etc.)? Or does the Torah consider the unborn baby to be more like a possession (say, like a cow or a lamb), in which case a miscarriage is not equivalent to murder?
How does life after loss become the new normal? And if you or your family are not in the path of a catastrophe now, what can you do now to prepare yourself...
There is serious debate among Hebrew scholars concerning this, and while I personally lean strongly towards the translation found in the ESV (compare the NET’s “and her child is born prematurely”), we can’t be absolutely dogmatic.
But either way, how can this verse, even as translated in the NRSV, be used to support abortion? Even following the NRSV (and other, similar translations), a crime has been committed and the guilty party will be fined. So, if we applied the concept to our society today, abortion would be punishable by the law, all the more so if it was done intentionally. (Again, the case described in Exodus 21 speaks of a pregnant woman being struck accidentally while two men are fighting.)
Also, since we have other verses in the Bible, cited at the beginning of this article, pointing to the personhood of the child in the womb, we can make an excellent case for the rendering found in the ESV and NET (and many other translations).
As for the passage in Numbers, it speaks of a ceremony which takes place when a husband suspects that his wife has committed adultery. In that case, she is forced to take a public oath and drink a unique concoction, with the priest saying, “‘the LORD make you a curse and an oath among your people, when the LORD makes your thigh fall away and your body swell. May this water that brings the curse pass into your bowels and make your womb swell and your thigh fall away.’ And the woman shall say, ‘Amen, Amen.’” (Num 5:21-22, ESV)
Here, we are told by some defenders of abortion, it is God Himself who performs the abortion with the drink that the wife ingests, causing this pregnant woman to lose her child. How, then, can we argue that God is pro-life?
As ludicrous as this argument sounds, it is often raised, so let’s take a moment to rebut it.
First, God is the righteous Judge, and if He deems it right to take a life, that is His prerogative (see Deuteronomy 32:39; note also the narrative in 2 Samuel 11-12, where David commits adultery and the baby that is born dies as a result of judgment).
Second, and more germane to the text here, the passage says absolutely nothing about the woman being pregnant, nor does it speak of her miscarrying. Nothing in the Hebrew text points in that direction at all.
Third, even if the drink allegedly caused miscarriages (which, again, the text does not reference or speak of at all), if the woman had not committed adultery, it would have no effect on her. This would mean that the drink was not some kind of abortifacient.
But let’s not end here. Having responded to the misuse of these verses, let’s remind ourselves of this beautiful passage from Luke’s Gospel, describing Mary’s pregnancy:
“In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a town in Judah, and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, and she exclaimed with a loud cry, ‘Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy’” (Luke 1:39-44, ESV)
Those unborn babies are tiny little human beings in our Father’s sight. We stand with Him when we stand for them.
Matthew 10:31 “Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.”
Creation Moments Jul. 31, 2019 -- One of the delights of living in the Pacific Northwest of the United States is being able to watch the hummingbirds. As soon as we saw these remarkable little birds for ourselves, my wife and I knew we had to attract them to our yard. So we invested in feeders and kept them topped up with sugar solution through the summer months. Two species seemed to predominate in our garden – the orange-bellied Rufous and the beautiful, iridescent green Anna’s hummingbird.
Of course, nothing previously seen on the TV screen could prepare me for the delight of watching the little creatures fly backwards as they finished feeding. They rarely landed, so we had no view of their wings, which move so fast that they are just a blur.
Normally, when a bird’s wings upstroke, this is simply to get the wings back in position for another down stroke. Hummingbirds are different. Both strokes have power. The amazing way in which hummingbirds beat their wings uses a huge amount of energy for such a tiny bird. In fact, it has been estimated that hummingbirds need an energy input, which, if scaled up to human dimensions, would be the equivalent of us eating 1,300 hamburgers a day! So much energy would be produced that we would actually catch fire!
It should be obvious that the mechanisms required to cope with such energy changes could not have evolved by chance. The little hummingbird is a wonderful example of God’s design
THE TOUCH THAT TRANSFORMS
Seven times in the book of Matthew, Jesus encountered people with sickness or infirmities and healed them with a touch. Although He had the power to simply speak a word or command illness to leave, He often chose a more hands-on approach. In the case of the leper in today’s passage, Jesus’ personal touch must have been something the man rarely experienced, since he was considered untouchable. In fact, that may be why Jesus chose this avenue of healing.
The need for a touch from a fellow human being has not disappeared in the 2,000 years since Jesus walked the earth. Yet in a world dominated by social media and technology, we are now more isolated than ever before. Physical contact is being replaced with “likes” on Facebook. And when we do think of touch, it’s often associated with scandal, impropriety, or immorality. How did this wonderful word become so maligned?
As Christians, we have the opportunity to “touch” people in a variety of ways, including by our words—for example, the proclamation of salvation through Jesus Christ can transform a person’s life and eternal destiny. However, ministry is also accomplished with our hands through service, compassion, and the encouragement of a hug or loving pat on the shoulder.
Our heart, mouth, and hands must be cooperating in order to fully minister in Jesus’ name. And whether alone or gathered with others, we have the privilege of touching lives through prayer. Jesus touched people both physically and spiritually, and as His followers, we must do likewise. Look for opportunities in which God might use you for His glory.
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."