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Saturday, November 30, 2013

Zechaiah 12:3 Jerusalem (and facebook)

My wife incited a thread on facebook by mentioning Israel. It was 'great' in that it revealed depth of feeling rarely displayed about anything in this modern culture. It got me to thinking, so I include one comment from the thread and then I will start my comments on the whole matter. (you would have to go to Laura Bean's page on facebook and then scroll down to November 24th to get the whole thread.)

(one comment)
No matter what they do? If they hypothetically decide, tomorrow, to murder every young baby and child in Palestine, would that be okay? Because the Bible says support them. That is the problem with following a rulebook interpreted by humans, because I suspect no good God would support such a thing. Hence, either the bible is wrong, or the human interpretation given me is, because I will not support an evil act no matter who or what entity says to support an evil act. Not to mention, is not the whole idea that if supporting them so that they can bring about the apocalypse? Well I don't want the apocalypse if our actions can bring peace and prevent it. If you are looking forward to the apocalypse you really shouldn't be making decisions about our future because the future doesn't really concern you.”

(My thoughts)
This thread has been beautiful in its diversity. I want to add to it because I respect what has gone before me. A “world view” is evident in every response. Israel and Jerusalem, are guaranteed to bring out strong feelings. When you begin to go deep into these issues, one thing that becomes very clear is that there is a deeper connection between the Jew and Israel, than there is between any other nationality and their home-land. They are deeply inter-twined, it is difficult if not impossible to tell where the state ends and the individual begins. No one can imagine the joy of having a land of their own, after many centuries of exile. The brand new UN voted to give the Jew this land. The holocaust was fresh in every ones minds and this new body whose main charter was to prevent future wars, saw only 'good' in giving this people a land of their own, so that they would never again be the whipping boy of a deranged dictator. Did they handle the Palestinian problem correctly? No. Has any Arab body before or since, helped? No. Did Muhammad teach his followers that it is OK to lie, to make false treaties, to buy time and eventually destroy your enemy...Oh yes he did. (Treaty of Hudaibiya)
At its deepest level this becomes about God's right to choose. He does not choose based on performance, it is all grace. This truth, is a great comfort to the sinner, and a great affront to those who 'think they are well.' The apocalypse happens because God said it would, the Jew does not bring it about, God does. The end result is Peace, true peace, between nations and peoples. There is a cross before the crown...always. Humanity strives for 'peace' but it is the expedient peace that leaves God and His choice out of the equation. We will just educate our selves and eventually, everyone will see that the wise choice is peace and so they will lay down their weapons and stop this silly arguing and killing. That has never happened in history and it will not happen for anything longer than a 3 ½ year period now. The amazing thing is that people who believe in a God who has on His agenda, the apocalypse, are actually the most charitable group in the world. More colleges, hospitals, orphanages and rescue missions are formed and operating under the name of Jesus than all other religions or non-religions combined. There must be more to this picture than we typically see.
Sin, injustice, bribery, money talks, however you want to put it one of the horrors in this world is the lack of true justice. The apocalypse is all about clearing the slate, so that God can keep His promise to rule the nations in truth and justice from His chosen center of the world, Jerusalem. True and good government flowing from a true and good God. The financial “rulers of the world” are shown as being destroyed in the apocalypse even before the armies that array themselves against the purposes of God. So the puppeteers and the puppets will all be brought under the rule of God and the world will witness and live under the one who is called Faithful and True.
The path there is not so pretty. But as for calling it “good or evil” that is up to God, not to us, with our very limited, very finite perspective. I think the path will look something like this. (I don't think for one second I have the whole truth on this and would be interested in any other perspectives that are supported by the amazing word of God.) Zechariah 12:3 is the starting point, because here in this 2,500 year old prophecy is an amazing up-to-the-minute headline from the evening news.
 “It will come about in that day that I will make Jerusalem heavy stone for all the peoples; all who lift it will be severely injured. And all the nations of the earth will be gathered against it.”
 Words of prophecy this accurate, should cause us to study the Bible.
Currently, the individual who truly deeply converts and grows solidly in their love for God, is a person who has seen the deep depravity of their heart; addicts, and those who have had a true 'dark night of the soul', a time of utter hopelessness in themselves. The Bible is very aware of this principle and speaks of it in numerous places. “When they come to the end of their strength...” then God moves. This principle of God applies to individuals and to His chosen people as a whole.

Israel being chosen comes with a 'down-side.' Because they have been given so much, they are given double for their sins. God's judgment, has been severe throughout their history. Man has over-stepped and gone beyond the intent of God, because Satan is very aware that the way you stop the Kingdom from coming is you stop the people who are to be a light to the other nations. Israel had to be restored to their land, in order for the events of the end times to begin.

The desire for peace is strong and leads to many compromises. A peace covenant that is actually a lie, for no other purpose than to 'buy time' to get strong enough to kill your enemies, is an accepted way of doing business in Islam. A covenant of peace, most likely made from a point where Israel has proven stronger than her enemies, is made. Work on the temple is started. A small time player in that covenant, begins to rise in influence and power. He is assassinated. Satan copies the resurrection of Jesus, by “indwelling” this man's body. The anti-Christ is now on the earth, and he sets out very quickly to accomplish as much death and destruction as he possibly can, because he knows his time is short.

There is no nation that will be the solution to this problem. The anti-christ will actually set up his throne in Jerusalem and when the nations gather to fight him at the end of time, because they are tired of his rule, tired of his control. Jesus will return and end it all before man destroys everything.


The throne of David, is where Jesus will rule from. A promise is a promise, and God is glorified when He keeps these promises, to this people. The proper response of every other nation is, “Your God is the true God show us your God.”

Monday, November 18, 2013

Washing the disciples feet.

An inflated view of self.
Keeps me from loving.
Keeps me from bowing.
Leads me in to sin.

In John 13 Jesus washes the disciples feet.
ALL  of the disciples, including Judas.

I resist the call to lay down my life on
anything but my terms.

I can do "tasks" and "look" a certain way, but
the test is, "Do you love the way Jesus wants you to love?"

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Spurgeon and Art Katz on Mark 9:29

"It will make men of you; you will be all the grander and the better servants of God in after years, when your own weakness shall have driven you back upon the divine strength, and you shall have learned to trust, not in man, much less in yourself, but to cast yourself confidently on God."...  "he wants to make us see the greatness of the mercy, so he occupies our thoughts with the greatness of the distress that needs to be relieved, and with this impossibility of that distress being relieved except by his own power and Godhead. That experience does us good, dear friends, does it not? It makes us feel that the mercy, when it does come, will be remarkably precious to us."  "I think also that I may spiritualize this expression now, and say that, when your mind gets into such a condition that you begin to sorrow over a lost soul, when you realize the meaning of that agonizing cry of Jeremiah, "Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people!"—it is then that the devil will have to go. When your soul is clothed in sackcloth and ashes, and you go mourning, without the light of the sun, saying, "I could die rather than that soul should die; I could wish myself accursed rather than that soul were accursed; I put myself in the dust before God, even in the dust of self-abasement on account of that soul, that I may win it to Christ," then that sort of devil will have to go out. Starving him out by starving yourself, and making your own spirit wretched and miserable for the poor sinner's sane, you will make that devil find the person untenable any longer as a lodging-place."   Spurgeon from here...    http://www.spurgeon.org/sermons/2454.htm

"This kind cometh not out, except by prayer and fasting"  both of which are acts of self-denial, this kind of devotional prayer (rising early in the morning) is as much an act of self denial of sleep, as fasting is a denial of food and there is something in the wisdom of God that affects issues in the heavenlies, by the act of denial because the powers of the air predicate their entire system not on denial but on gratification; on lust, on greed, on ambition, on satisfaction, on all that is carnal.  God's wisdom is exactly the opposite, relinquishing, yielding, letting go, forsaking,   It is that which brings it into tune with the whole universe as God's act."  Art Katz teaching on Mark 9:29 and quoting P.T. Forsyth on the Soul of Prayer.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Zechariah Bible Study # 10 Zechariah 6:9-15

Zechariah Bible Study # 10
The Crowning of Joshua
Zechariah 6:9-15

9 The word of the Lord also came to me, saying, 10 “Take an offering from the exiles, from Heldai, Tobijah and Jedaiah; and you go the same day and enter the house of Josiah the son of Zephaniah, where they have arrived from Babylon.
The Symbolic Crowns
11 Take silver and gold, make an ornate crown and set it on the head of Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest.12 Then say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, “Behold, a man whose name is Branch, for He will branch out from where He is; and He will build the temple of the Lord. 13 Yes, it is He who will build the temple of the Lord, and He who will bear the honor and sit and rule on His throne. Thus, He will be a priest on His throne, and the counsel of peace will be between the two offices.”’ 14 Now the crown will become a reminder in the temple of the Lord to Helem, Tobijah, Jedaiah and Hen the son of Zephaniah. 15 Those who are far off will come and build the temple of the Lord.” Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent me to you. And it will take place if you completely obey the Lord your God.



The visions have ended and this symbolic transaction foreshadows that will follow the banishment of evil from the land, and the overthrow of world-power in the earth. The crowning of the true King and Priest forever.
Verse 9 - After all the visions the transition to a prophetic word of the Lord is noted.
Verse 10 – People come from Babylon, guys who have settled there and chosen not to return, but who return now with an offering for the Lord's house. These are Jews but are coming from far-off Babylon, so David Baron, relates this section to John 12:20-33. Greeks send a message to Jesus, they want to see Him, but His response is … not easy to figure out. (Read that section)
At the time the Greeks were asking to see Jesus, there was a sign in the temple over the second outer court that read, “No stranger may enter here on pain of death.” The only way that was going to change was for Jesus to go to the cross, and then there would truly be a “house of prayer for all nations.”
Verse 11 – An ornate amazing crown is to be made. The three guys would have had no idea that their offering would be used to make a crown for a powerful symbolic transaction. Joshua as high priest and a member of the tribe of Levi, would have been very aware, that no one in his tribe would ever be wearing the crown of a king, that was reserved for the tribe of Judah.
Verse 12 – The Lord Himself sets out to explain this event. Baron says of verses 12 and 13, “This is one of the most remarkable and precious Messianic prophecies, and there is no plainer prophetic utterance in the whole Old Testament as to the Person of the promised Redeemer, the offices He was to fill, and the mission he was to accomplish. Let us examine the sentence in detail.” “Behold the man.” The sovereign God, put these words on Pilate's lips also, but this crown has no thorns. The Branch, God's chosen symbolic word for His Messiah. Spoken in Isaiah 4:2 “ In that day the Branch of the Lord will be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth will be the pride and the adornment of the survivors of Israel.” Again in Jeremiah 23:5 “ In that day the Branch of the Lord will be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth will be the pride and the adornment of the survivors of Israel.” and Jeremiah 33:15 “In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch of David to spring forth; and He shall execute justice and righteousness on the earth.” “And He will build the temple of the Lord.” Both the church and the body of Jesus, and the temple that will be built during the millennial reign of Christ on earth. As per usual, the prophetic word has multiple meanings and if we just limit it, to one thing we go down a trail to error and deception.



Verse 13 – The pattern of scripture is repetition for emphasis, it was the Hebrew way of putting an exclamation point on a sentence. So this is going to happen and nothing can stop it, “He will build the temple.” He will be a priest on a throne, both offices combined into one Man. Only one Man can open the seal and only one Man can hold both of these offices. David took the priesthood role, when the ark was returned, he ate the bread that only priests should eat, when he was on the run from Saul. He was not rebuked by God either time, he was a fore-shadowing of Christ. Not in presumption, but at the leading of the Lord. “And the counsel of peace will be between them.” This is an alternate reading of that last part of the verse and it would indicate that our peace is found between the Father and Jesus, the presence of the Holy Spirit, leading and guiding our life, so that we are a man like David who learns from his mistake in using the ox cart, an expedient, what's the easiest way to get it done thing. He learns and studies and goes back and does it the right way the second time. We MUST wait upon the Lord, we MUST seek His ways, we MUST NOT be in such a hurry to “do” that we miss the mind of the Lord.



Verse 14 – Joshua realizing that he was just a symbol or a sign, probably could not wait for them to remove the crown from his head. From there it was kept as a sign in the temple of the Lord. Those who had given the resources to allow it to be made are remembered and the man who opened up his home to these visitors in hospitality is also remembered. No deed, done for God, is small.



Verse 15 – Ahhh the gentiles, “those who are far off” Thank you Jesus, I was 'far off' and YOU brought me to the temple. You have made me one who is part of the building of the temple. Partial fulfillment, and in 'that day' and a further fulfillment as the nations assist the Jews in returning to their land at the start of the millennial reign. “Completely obey” totally impossible under the law, but possible when God pours out His grace on this nation and makes them a truly Holy people, and gives them, as an entire nation, a new heart to follow and obey Him. That was God's promise.
Ezekiel 36:24 For I will take you from among the nations, gather you out of all countries, and bring you into your own land.
Ezekiel 36:25-27
25 Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. 26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27 I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them.
Jeremiah 31:31
Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.
How beautiful and how wonderful God’s reassuring words to Israel are. God’s promise of the New Covenant should bring tremendous rejoicing in the heart of every Jew. The New Covenant is the outworking of the Abrahamic Covenant of faith. God will give a new heart and a new spirit to His people to believe in the Seed of Abraham, Jesus Christ.

Ezekiel 36:28-30, 35
28 Then you shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; you shall be My people, and I will be your God. 29 I will deliver you from all your uncleannesses. I will call for the grain and multiply it, and bring no famine upon you. 30 And I will multiply the fruit of your trees and the increase of your fields, so that you need never again bear the reproach of famine among the nations.

35 So they will say,
‘This land that was desolate has become like the garden of Eden





Task master

I'm task oriented.  If I see things that need done, part of me could care less, but part of me wants to do them, so I have to choose.
I am blessed because God has given me, His eyes for some people, not for all people, because, i think then i would explode, but for some people.  I pray He would increase my capacity to "catch and release" His love for others.
I am passionate about the truth about the end of time and the God of the Day of the Lord.  Scripture has so much to say about this but we get lost looking at the bark on a specific tree and not seeing the big picture of God's promises and His purpose of restoration of all things.  Acts 3:21.
A friend had a dream recently and was impressed by God that maybe things will be beginning to wrap up in a 11-18 year window of time.
I hope he is right.
I am grateful to God for my wife, my kids, my upbringing, my friends, my job, and anyone who gave their life to preserve the truth of the Bible.
This upcoming generation MUST KNOW THEIR GOD.  Knowledge of the Bible or facts or phrases, or creeds is not going to cut it in the near future.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Arthur Pink nails it!

This is so good, I have nothing to add, and am simply honored to post it on my blog.

All our afflictions are appointed by our loving heavenly Father!

(Arthur Pink)

"I was silent; I would not open my mouth, for You are the one who has done this!" Psalm 39:9

Realizing that it was the chastening hand of God upon him, David refrained from murmuring. It was not the silence of sullenness, but of meekly acquiescing to the rod. When we are in our right minds, we shall have nothing to object against God's dealings with us, or dispute with them. God is sovereign in the acts of His providence--and therefore an important branch of our obedience unto Him lies in suffering His will, as well as in doing His will. That obedience is evidenced by refusing to repine against Him by the utterance of any impatient words. 

Shall vile dust and ashes censure the providential dealings of the Most High God, or impugn His goodness? Let all God's treatment of us be both wondrous and righteous in our eyes. 

"If our hope is in God for a happiness in the eternal world--then we can well afford to reconcile ourselves to all the dispensations of Divine providence concerning this world." (Matthew Henry) 

The consideration that all our afflictions are appointed by our loving heavenly Father, should silence all complaints. It did so with David. He knew they came not by chance, but according to divine appointment

After months of acute suffering, and still in agony of body, the last words of John Calvin were, "Lord, You grind me to powder, but it suffices me because it is Your hand."

"God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it!" Hebrews 12:10-11 

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Foundations

Way back when I first was drawn by God to seek out true worshippers, I was led to "The Fountain of Life" in Kingston, NY, where a group of elders oversaw an amazing little body of Christ.  Dale Rumble was one of the elders there; when I went looking on the internet for him now-a-days, I found out he passed away in 2010, but I was very blessed by this quote, from one of his tracts.  You will be too.
His stuff is available at www.thefountain.org

"I believe that the glory of the end-time church will be greater than that of the early church. Through hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, earthquakes, wars, economic upheaval, etc., the Lord will shake the realms of man to bring him to repentance.
. . . once more in a little while, I am going to shake the heavens and the earth, the sea also and the dry land. I will shake all the nations; and they will come with the wealth of all nations and I will fill this house with glory, says the Lord of hosts. (Haggai 2:6-7)
The church that Jesus returns for will be an overcoming body of believers who have endured great tribulation and persecution. She will be a mature bride clothed with the glory of God.

End-time Tribulation
Teaching that Jesus will return and rapture the church before the great tribulation occurs is false. Trials and tribulation are used by God to purify, strengthen and mature His people. Martyrdom is a path to glory.
. . . but we also exult in our tribulation, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope . . . . (Romans 5:3-4)
Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you. (1 Peter 4:12)
. . . for if we died with Him we will also live with Him; if we endure. we will also reign with Him . . . . (2 Timothy 2:11-12)
For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison. (2 Corinthians 4:17)
. . . through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God. (Acts 14:22)
. . . if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him . . . . (Romans 8:17)
Many will be purged, purified and refined, but the wicked will act wickedly; and none of the wicked will understand, but those who have insight will understand. (Daniel 12:10)
And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even when faced with death. (Revelation 12:11)
Then they will deliver you to tribulation, and will kill you, and you shall be hated by all nations because of My name . . . but the one who endures to the end shall be saved. (Matthew 24:9, 23)
The above verses of scripture express God’s agenda to restore the church and to manifest His glory. James expresses our responsibility for this truth.
Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. (James 1:2-4)"