A Fig Tree and Dry Bones

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What a tremendous week of study!  I hope you are enjoying the discussion.  We’re in the midst of examining signs of the times and today’s lesson focuses on perhaps the most crucial parable and prophecy in all of Scripture when it comes to God’s plan for the Jews in end times.  Let’s jump into Mark 13:28-29:

“Now learn the parable from the fig tree: when its branch has already become tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. Even so, you too, when you see these things happening, recognize that He is near, right at the door.”

Jesus was speaking to a Jewish audience who would most certainly have known the parable of the fig tree referred to Israel.  (The fig tree is the national symbol of Israel.)  Once again, Jesus was making it very clear what the signs are of the end times.  The branch “put forth leaves” on May 14, 1948 when Israel became alive again, declaring independence!

Similarly, the prophet Ezekiel clearly prophesied Israel’s re-birth.  In Ezekiel 36, the prophet prophecied to the land, in preparation for the return of the Jewish people.  Then we hear this in Ezekiel 37:

 

Yes!  Dry bones now live!  Will you dedicate some time today to praise God for the fulfillment of this great prophecy?  Understand, dear Christians, God’s purpose cannot be fulfilled unless the people of God are in the land of God!  Praise His Holy Name!

Senate Passes Defense Bill with Important Pro-Israel Provisions

AIPAC has announced that the US Senate has passed the National Defense Authorization Act that includes over $500 million in provision to Israel in accordance with the US-Israel Memorandum of Understanding.

See AIPAC’s Press Release here.

Praise God for men and women in Congress who stand for and support Israel.  Please pray for wisdom as our nation’s leaders consider important decisions every single day.  As tension grows, ask the Lord to send guardian angels to fend off the evil intent of the enemy to sow discord and strife within our halls of government.

Israel’s Response to Fire Kites from Gaza

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Kibbutz Nir-am

In response to Palestinian fire kites from the Gaza Strip, the children of Kibbutz Nir-am had a response!  They floated balloons filled with candy into the Gaza Strip.

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The Hamas-backed Palestinian threat of launching 5,000 fire kites into Israel on the final day of Ramadan failed to match the expectation, though 11 fires set by incendiary kites were quickly extinguished by fire fighters and volunteer citizens.

Earlier that day (Friday), Israeli military aircraft fired warning shots at a terrorist group in Gaza preparing to launch kites.  A military spokesman stated, “The IDF views the use of incendiary balloons and kites with great severity and will operate to prevent their use.”

Israel is now using “re-purposed” radar technology designed originally to detect gliders to track down fire kites.  Drones are now being used to intercept incendiary kites.  Over the past 2+ months of the Palestinian “March of Return,” almost $1.5 million in damages has occurred in Israel (due primarily to fire damage to fields and forests), and more than 130 Palestinians have lost their lives, many of whom are members of Hamas or Islamic Jihad.

Image may contain: textThe battle is between good and evil.  Make no mistake, neither the Jews nor the Palestinians are perfect people.  But consider the principles in play.  One side launches a “peaceful” protest in which they hurl grenades, explosives and rocks at soldiers, burn tires and fly hundreds of incendiary kites and balloons into Israeli territory, sparking dozens of fires.  While the other side responds by sending “peace” balloons, filled with candy, into the Gaza Strip in return.  Which do you see as most peaceful?

Let’s pray for the “good,” and plead for the “evil.”  That evil is perpetrated by Hamas.  The citizens, particularly children, are brainwashed to hate Jews and encouraged to murder them.  Pray that the “good” demonstrated by the people of Kibbutz Nir-am provides opportunity for Palestinian young people to turn from the evil imposed upon them.

Pray for all to know true peace that only the Prince of Peace can provide!

Early Word from the North Korean Summit: “Better than Anyone Could Have Expected”

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All eyes are on Singapore as President Trump and his team meet with the North Korean delegation, led by Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un.  The two greeted one another in a brief photo op before heading to a private “get to know you” meeting before joining their teams for full negotiations.

The US is said to have one primary objective: denuclearization of the Korean peninsula, though it is unclear what the US is willing to do to obtain that objective.

Peace…peace…peace.  We hear it everywhere.  But is it possible?  Whether we talk about Israel, North Korea, Iran, the US or any other place on earth, the answer is the same:  short seasons of peace may be possible, but true lasting peace comes ONLY through the Prince of Peace.

Scripture teaches us to be peacemakers, and I pray that President Trump, Supreme Leader Kim and their teams truly work toward peace.  Likewise, I pray for peace in Israel and the Middle East.  My prayers center on asking the Prince of Peace to invade the hearts and minds of us all.

BTW – I’m not expecting earth-shattering news out of the Singapore summit.  Should progress be made, it will likely take months or years.  That means we have work to do!  Let’s pray for our leaders, our nation, and those around the world!

First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men,  for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.  This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior.
~1 Timothy 2:1-3

Stick around for summaries of our study, Why Israel Matters.  We’ll be discussing world events in light of God’s Word.  Stay tuned!