Sunday, December 18, 2016

THE PROMISE OF CHRISTMAS

Just want to wish you all a Merry Christmas!  I hope you will hear my heart with my poem about the reason for the season.

THE PROMISE OF CHRISTMAS

Glory to God in the highest
The angels did proclaim.
The Son of God has come to earth
And Jesus is His name.

He came to show the Father's love
To do the Father's will
To take away the curse of sin
His promise to fulfill.

He gave His life and shed His blood
To wash away our sin.
He rose victorious from the grave
To give us peace within.

One day soon He's coming back
To take His family home
Transforming our old bodies
Into one just like His own.

I can hardly wait to see
The Lord upon His throne
And all He promised to prepare
For our eternal home.

Don't delay; the time is short.
Choose Jesus now and gain
A future filled with love and joy

Forever--as He reigns.














Click on pic for larger view

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

BIBLICAL PROPHECY AND TODAY’S NEWS HEADLINES

In this blog I have focused on helping others in their study of bible prophecy by sharing what I have learned through my own personal studies.  Having shared the truth of scripture as I see it over the past nine years, I only feel it necessary to add to these studies when I learn something new or feel the need to share encouragement through scripture cards I have made and other items of personal inspiration.   

So much is happening today that testifies to the truth of the prophecy in scripture that I decided it was time for an update.  If I did not know that God is sovereign and on the throne and working out His plan for our future, I would certainly be afraid and depressed about the future.  Instead, though I hate what those who reject Jesus as Savior will have to experience, I can’t help but get excited about the fact that Jesus is coming soon to set up His kingdom—and at least seven years before that to take those who have placed their faith in Him to heaven in an event known as the rapture.  My study of scripture declares that truth no matter how others may choose to deny it—and I have certainly read many arguments by those who deny that truth.

How do I know it will be soon?  Because the daily news headlines declare it.  Just as the LORD Jesus expected the religious leaders of His day to recognize the signs of the times that pointed to Him as the Messiah, I believe He expects believers today to recognize the signs of the times that point to His return to set up His kingdom.

Matthew 16:1–3 “The Pharisees also with the Sadducees came, and tempting desired him that he would shew them a sign from heaven. He answered and said unto them, When it is evening, ye say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red. And in the morning, It will be foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowring. O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times?”

We know from the prophet Ezekiel that Russia will be a major player in the end times and will lead a coalition including Iran and Turkey among others that will attack Israel in order to plunder its wealth.  Such a coalition did not exist until very recently.  The gas reserves that have been discovered in the Mediterranean off the coast of Israel are a special enticement for Russia.  (See my study on Ezekiel 38-39 at www.momsbiblejournal.com.)

The situation with ISIS has provided a hook in the jaws that has resulted in Russia being positioned right on Israel’s border as the de facto ruling authority in Syria.  It has invested too much in the area to risk losing.  This situation has also served to position Russia as the most influential superpower in the region, supplanting the United States in the eyes of the nations of that area.  In fact, Russia’s influence throughout the world is increasing even as the influence of the United States is decreasing because of the ineptitude shown by the actions we have taken and our unwillingness to commit the resources necessary to stop ISIS.  I believe this conflict will eventually result in the fulfillment of another prophecy as declared by the prophet Isaiah—the complete destruction of Damascus.  (See my study on Isaiah 17 at www.momsbiblejournal.com.) 

The Apostle Paul identified the last days as being characterized by a complete decay in morality throughout the world.  (See my studies on 1Timothy 4 and 2Timothy 3.)  I, of course, am completely astounded at the complete moral corruption that has occurred in my own nation in just the last few years.  Our government has abandoned the biblical principles upon which our nation was founded and has passed legislation that rejects morality as definfed in the word of God. 

Jesus declared in his teaching known as the Olivet Discourse (Matthew 24) that the days in which Jesus would return would be like the days of Noah before the flood. 

Genesis 6:5 “And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.”

Following is how the Holy Spirit inspired the Apostle Paul to define such evil in his letter to the Romans.  (I am going to quote from the New Living Translation for better clarity.)

Romans 1:24–32 “So God let them go ahead and do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other’s bodies. Instead of believing what they knew was the truth about God, they deliberately chose to believe lies. So they worshiped the things God made but not the Creator himself, who is to be praised forever. Amen

That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relationships with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men and, as a result, suffered within themselves the penalty they so richly deserved.

When they refused to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their evil minds and let them do things that should never be done. Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, fighting, deception, malicious behavior, and gossip. They are backstabbers, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful. They are forever inventing new ways of sinning and are disobedient to their parents. They refuse to understand, break their promises, and are heartless and unforgiving. They are fully aware of God’s death penalty for those who do these things, yet they go right ahead and do them anyway. And, worse yet, they encourage others to do them, too.”

I think that is a perfect commentary on the morals as reflected in our culture and, I am sad to say, in our government in America today.  I know there are still a few “good” people in our government, but they are certainly in the minority and have been unable to even enforce the protections provided in our constitution to prevent such corruption.   The powers that be have been given a huge assist by abuse of power in our judiciary that has resulted in judicial activism that oversteps the bounds set by the constitution. 

The advances in technology have provided the means by which some prophecies of scripture can now be fulfilled in ways that could never have been accomplished before.  The Revelation contains a prophecy declaring that the whole world will be able to see the dead bodies of God’s two tribulation (the last seven years before the return of Jesus) witnesses for three days.  This is now possible through the use of satellites and worldwide broadcasting on television and internet.

Revelation 11:9–10 “And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves. And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth.”

The Revelation also declares that the coming world ruler will be able to control buying and selling throughout the world by requiring people to have a mark on their person declaring allegiance to him.  Again, that technology is now possible.

Revelation 13:16–17 “He required everyone—great and small, rich and poor, slave and free—to be given a mark on the right hand or on the forehead. And no one could buy or sell anything without that mark, which was either the name of the beast or the number representing his name.”

Jesus declared in His teaching that if God did not limit that time that Satan is allowed to rule in the person of the Antichrist, no flesh on earth would survive.  I think that is a reference to the nuclear technology that exists today that could accomplish just that.  At no other time in history was this true.

Matthew 24:21–22 “For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved….”

These are just some of the more obvious examples that I see reflected in the headlines of our news today.  Though I am not providing the full explanation of these prophecies in this post, you can use the search tool on this blog and/or go to my website to see the complete studies that provide more detail on the prophetic scriptures being referenced.

So, why should I believe that any of these prophecies are true?  Because there are so many examples of fulfilled prophecy.  (See blog posts dated December 7, 2008; July 7, 2010; July 20, 2011; and November 26 & 30, 2012 for more examples.)

The three that I believe are most important are the birth and resurrection of Jesus and the rebirth of the state of Israel after almost 2000 years.  My heart breaks for those of you who continue to reject the truth of God’s word in spite of so much evidence for its trustworthiness—not only regarding prophecy, but also in scientific and historical accuracy.  I know what your future holds if you continue to reject Jesus as your Savior.  Read the book.  Look at the facts.  Don’t let foolish pride and deception condemn you to a future in hell!  God loves you and sacrificed His only Son, Jesus, to make the gift of salvation available to you for the asking. 

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

John 14:6 “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

Ephesians 2:8–9 “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”


Romans 10:9 “For if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” (NLT)

Friday, September 2, 2016

THE SETUP FOR EZEKIEL'S WAR


I continue to watch the new with great interest in light of biblical prophecy.  Recently I listened to a talk by Amir Tsfari, a Jewish believer, and former Deputy Governor of Jericho and the Jordan Valley in Israel.  He gave a very informative talk in light of current events and a future war in Israel as prophesied by Ezekiel in chapters 38-39.
Though I was familiar with much of what he said, he provided some insights from a military perspective that were quite interesting.  He pointed out how the main pieces of God's coalition were now aligned--Russia, Iran and Turkey.  He talked about the failed coup in Turkey and how it had strengthen Erdogan and allowed him to eliminate those most likely to thwart his strong Islamic agenda.  He also talked about Russia and how Putin was getting in position and testing the waters as to Israel’s vulnerability to attack.  
Jack Hibbs, pastor of Calvary Chapel Chino Hills, joined him on stage for a question and answer session for the last part of the video.  Though I have some minor disagreements with his perspective on bible prophecy, I recommend this presentation without reservation.  Jesus is coming soon!

A Blueprint for Curtailing 'Religious Liberty'

A very well done article with the spirit of C.S. Lewis.

A Blueprint for Curtailing 'Religious Liberty'

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS ABOUT RACE RELATIONS -- ALL LIVES MATTER

I listened to a powerful sermon yesterday by Dr. Tony Evans regarding the biblical view of race relations.  I wish every professing Christian would reflect the truth of this teaching in their lives.


Thursday, August 4, 2016

A LIFE CONSUMED WITH A PASSION FOR JESUS


It’s been a while since I have felt I had something I wanted to share on my blog.  The news is chock full of things that continue to declare the signs of the times.  In light of those signs, I really am working with an urgency on my verse-by-verse bible journals and in seeking to become conformed to the person to whom my LORD will be able to say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”  

My granddaughter introduced me to a song by Matthew West that really spoke to my heart.  These are the words that struck me the most.


I don't wanna go through the motions
I don't wanna go one more day
Without Your all consuming passion inside of me
I don't wanna spend my whole life asking,
What if I had given everything,
Instead of going through the motions?



No regrets, not this time
I'm gonna let my heart defeat my mind
Let Your love make me whole
I think I'm finally feeling something
'Cause just okay is not enough
Help me fight through the nothingness of this life



Cause I don't wanna go through the motions
I don't wanna go one more day
Without Your all consuming passion inside of me
I don't wanna spend my whole life asking
What if I had given everything,
Instead of going through the motions?



The phrase that really spoke to me was the idea of being filled with an “all consuming passion” for Jesus and the things He loves and desires.  I try to do things that honor the LORD, but I truly want to be consumed with a passion that affects my every thought and action.   

If you are a fellow believer, I pray these words will challenge you as well.  The more we give to Jesus of ourselves, the more He will be able to use us for His glory.  He’s coming soon……Let’s live like we believe that!  May we be able to say like Job:  "I shall come forth as gold."

Friday, July 1, 2016

THE SIGNS OF THE TIMES

The last few weeks have been filled with family time and a lot of fun with my grandchildren.  I've only been able to keep up with headlines, and they have been filled with much distressing news.  As I have pondered all that is going on, the LORD gave me an idea for a poem that I hope will encourage and/or challenge you.


THE SIGNS OF THE TIMES

Do you not see
The signs of the times
Foretold by the prophets of old?

Distress among nations
Moral decay
A focus on pleasures and gold.

Sin is abounding
Consciences seared
God’s word is no longer revered.

His truth is rejected
Wrong declared right
Accepted by many and cheered.

Deception is rampant
Blasphemy common
Those that are good are despised.

Natural affections
Are being rejected
We’re urged to support gay pride.

The family unit
Is being destroyed
Marriage has been redefined.

Boys are girls
Girls are boys
Gender a choice of the mind.

Advances in science
Are crossing the bounds
Established by God at creation.

Experiments done
They quickly explain
For man’s good as their justification.

Satellites, lasers
Computers and chips
The powers that be want control.

Agendas prepared
Alliances formed
As Satan’s influence grows.

Most important
Of all the signs
Declared to be part of God’s plan.

Descendants of Abraham
Isaac and Jacob
Are living once more in their land.

The prophet Ezekiel
Predicted the rise
Of dusty dry bones from the earth.

The nation of Israel
A home for the Jews
In one day declared its rebirth.

Life is no different
Than in Noah’s day
He preached and warned in vain.

Mocking and laughing
They called him a fool
Til one day the flood waters came.

One day soon
Millions will vanish
Taken by God to heaven.

Perilous times
Will then ensue
Full of terror, pain and oppression.

Many still try
But it can’t be denied
God’s word is faithful and true.

Turn from your sin
Be born again
Experience a life that is new.

Jesus died
Upon the cross
He suffered for your salvation.

The choice you make
To receive Him or not
Will determine your soul’s destination.

Do you not see
The signs of the times
Foretold by the prophets of old?

Don’t put it off
Accept Jesus today
Become safe and secure in His hold.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

THE BEASTS OF DANIEL Part 3


Dan. 7:19 Then I would know the truth of the fourth beast, which was diverse from all the others, exceeding dreadful, whose teeth were of iron, and his nails of brass; which devoured, brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with his feet;
Dan. 7:20 And of the ten horns that were in his head, and of the other which came up, and before whom three fell; even of that horn that had eyes, and a mouth that spake very great things, whose look was more stout than his fellows.

Daniel was greatly interested to know more about the fourth beast that was so terrifying that it couldn’t even be compared to a known animal with similar power and strength.  I liked the wording of the NIV for the last part of verse 19:  “…the beast that crushed and devoured its victims and trampled underfoot whatever was left.”

This beast has ten horns on his head to begin with, but another horn comes up that causes three of the first ten horns to fall.  This seems to indicate that the “little horn” (cf verse 8) begins his rise to power and the establishment of his kingdom by conquering three of the ten.  His kingdom will eventually expand to include the first three beasts as noted in the comments under verse 7-8 above.

It is at this point that Focht made another important point.  The Aramaic for the word “before” is not a reference to a preceding point in time; it means “in the face of” of “in front of.”  In other words, all four kings would face each other at the same time.

The Aramaic for the word “look” indicates that the Antichrist will have an intimidating demeanor; and his speech will be intimidating as well according to the Aramaic for “great things”

Dan. 7:21 I beheld, and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them;

The ruler represented by this last horn is able to exert physical power over the saints (those who are sanctified by God; believers).  This is information that was not included in the description of the vision at the beginning of the chapter.

Stedman notes that from this “we learn that the time of these four nations arising together will be a time of great and intense religious persecution, a time when war will be made against the saints, and quite successfully.

I think this verse corresponds specifically to Revelation 13:7.

Revelation 13:7 “And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them...

I am reminded that scripture declares that the gates of hell will not prevail against the church.

Matthew 16:18 “And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”

This seems to be another affirmation that the church is not present at this time.  The saints of this time have become believers during the 70th week that is designated as part of God’s plan for Israel as explained in chapter 9.

Daniel 9:24 “Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.”

Context of Revelation 13:7 is in reference to the beast that rises up out of the sea, the Antichrist.  It also describes him as having ten horns as described in verse 20 above.

Revelation 13:1 And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns….

Dan. 7:22 Until the Ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the most High; and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom.

The power of this “horn” will be for a limited time—“until the Ancient of days came.”  I believe this is a reference to the second coming of Jesus to set up His earthly kingdom.  The saints, those who have placed their trust in Jesus, will rule with Him.

1Corinthians 6:2 Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?

Revelation 5:10 And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.

Revelation 20:4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

Dan. 7:23 Thus he said, The fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces.

In verse 17 the fourth beast is called a king and in this verse it is said to be referencing the kingdom of the beast.  (Just as we would equate a country today with its ruler.)  This fourth kingdom will be different from all the previous kingdoms.  I think the description of the beast that rises out of the sea in Revelation 13 testifies to the fact that the kingdoms of the first three beasts will become part of the empire of the Antichrist.  Whether he conquers them or they join willingly is not addressed.  We do know, however, that he will eventually devour the whole earth through great destruction.

Revelation 13:7-8 “…and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.  And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him….

Dan. 7:24 And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings.
Dan. 7:25 And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.

“time” = a set time, technically, a year
“times” = two years
“dividing” = a half

This fourth kingdom will eventually emerge as a confederation of ten kings.  After these ten kings are established, another king, the Antichrist, will come on the scene that will be unique in comparison to the first ten.  He will humble or put down three of the first ten kings.  I believe this is saying that he will establish prominence by “humbling” or “abasing” three of the kingdoms under his leadership. 

This king will be outspoken against the God of heaven and will “wear out” (mentally afflict) those who believe in God.  Satan and his followers always take pleasure in blaspheming God. 

Revelation 13:4–6 “…they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him? And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months. And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.”

Psalms 74:10 “O God, how long shall the adversary reproach? shall the enemy blaspheme thy name for ever?”

Psalms 74:18 “Remember this, that the enemy hath reproached, O LORD, and that the foolish people have blasphemed thy name.”

Ray Stedman posits an interesting possibility:  The Hebrew [my note: Aramaic] word that is used for "wear out" is a most remarkable word. It means literally "to afflict," and always with a mental application. It means, therefore, to afflict mentally, and it very strongly suggests the brain-washing techniques which are now being widely developed, using serums and drugs by which the mind, the thinking, is actually changed.

The Antichrist will establish himself in place of God by trying to “change times and laws.”  Daniel had already declared that it is only God’s prerogative to change times and seasons.

Daniel 2:20-21Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his: And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding….”

Note that the power and authority of Antichrist will be “given” to him for 3.5 years—“a time and times and the dividing of time.

This timeframe is confirmed by Revelation 13:5; it states that the Antichrist will be in power for 42 months or 3.5 years.  This corresponds to the time that the remnant of Israel is protected in the wilderness during the tribulation for 1260 days or 3.5 years.  It also corresponds to the fact that He breaks the covenant with Israel at the midpoint of the 70th week, which is 7 years long, which corresponds to the last 3.5 years of that week that commences when he declares himself to be God (cf notes at Daniel 9:27).  Paul tells us about this in his letter to the Thessalonians.

2 Thessalonians 2:3–4 “Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.”

Dan. 7:26 But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end.

After the 3.5 years, the dominion/authority of this king will be completely destroyed.  I think this is a direct reference to verses 9-10.

Dan. 7:27 And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him.

After the destruction of the kingdom of Antichrist, the kingdom of the “most High” (Jesus) will be established as an everlasting (time out of mind, to the vanishing point, eternity) kingdom.  He will delegate ruling authority to the saints (believers), all of whom will serve (worship) and obey Him.

Stedman notes:  “It is the Son of man who comes and takes the kingdom, but then he gives it to the saints of the Most High who join him in ruling over the earth.”

The “everlasting kingdom” mentioned here is directly connected to the “everlasting kingdom” referenced in Daniel 2:44.

Daniel 2:44 “And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.”

Dan. 7:28 Hitherto is the end of the matter.

The interpreter has completed his interpretation.