Rockets Rain Down on Israel

Image result for gaza november 2018

IDF airstrike inside Gaza (Times of Israel photo)

Since Sunday night’s IDF special ops raid into the Gaza Strip, activity has ramped up in and around Gaza.  A top Hamas commander and several other terrorists were killed as a result of that mission, though it came at a cost.  Israeli sources have now confirmed that an IDF special ops officer was killed in that mission into the Strip on Sunday night, and another soldier was wounded.

Since then, Hamas has rained down at least 300 rockets on Israeli cities (perhaps the largest one day total ever), and the IDF has targeted over 70 Hamas and Islamic Jihad sites (backed by Iran) in the Gaza Strip.  Air raid sirens have gone off almost continually in cities throughout southern Israel and the Gaza Envelope (areas surrounding the Gaza Strip).  You will find a timeline and several videos here.

Meanwhile, other interesting things relative to the region are happening elsewhere.  During an official state visit to Paris to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of WWI, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin.  It was the first meeting between Netanyahu and Putin since the Russian-made S-200 missile system (operated by Syrians, in Syria) shot down a Russian plane.  Israel was ultimately blamed for the incident.   Though no details of the meetings were reported, it is probable that Iranian influence in Syria and the region (including their backing of Hamas in Gaza) was a focal point in those conversations.

It is currently in the best interest of both Russia and Israel to cooperate at least to some degree militarily, in terms of not getting in each other’s way.  However, as we see events around the world, particularly in the Middle East, confirm Bible prophecy day-after-day, we know the stage is being set for end time events.  We see evidence suggesting the imminent destruction of Damascus (Isaiah 17:1), setting of the stage for the War of Gog and Magog (Ezekiel 38-39), and the rise of the Antichrist out of Europe (Daniel 2, 7).

In fact, one cannot help but think the spirit of lawlessness, described in 2 Thessalonians 2, is already at work.  As I look at what’s happening in our world…and even America and evil things for which so many stand…I am reminded that our time is short.  What we see are signs of the tribulation,yet our rapture occurs before that terrible time of hell on earth.

As we see these things, we must be alert,  be about our Father’s business (as Jesus was in Luke 2:41-51), be watchmen on the wall (Ezekiel 33:1-6, Isaiah 62:6-7), sound the alarm (Joel 2:1, Jeremiah 4:5-6), and be ambassadors of Christ while still on this earth (2 Corinthians 5:20).

How are we doing?

PS: For a timely commentary on why Gaza is such a problem, check back later today.  Blessings!

…and the Shofar Blows!

 

This evening at sundown the shofar will blow, signaling the beginning of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish civil New Year.  Jewish people around the world will celebrate one of the most joyful days of the year.

Biblically speaking, though, it is the Feast of Trumpets…also a most joyful time!  If you follow this blog, or have heard Biblical teaching regarding the seven major feasts of Israel, you know that each feast points to Jesus, the Messiah…and Jesus fulfills each one.

But consider this: the four spring feasts…Passover, Feast of Unleavened Bread, Feast of First Fruits and Pentecost…have already been fulfilled.

  • Jesus was the Passover Lamb, sacrificed for our sins.
  • Jesus was striped, bruised and pierced for our transgression, symbolized by unleavened bread.
  • Jesus was the First Fruit, raised from the dead to redeem us from the curse of death.  We will follow Him in resurrection.  (Keep reading to understand!)
  • Jesus ascended to heaven, leaving us the Holy Spirit to guide us.

Yes, Jesus has fulfilled those feasts!  However, the feasts of Israel are God’s calendar, so we need to examine what comes next.

The Feast of Trumpets, the celebration of which begins at sundown, is highly significant.  The Bible tells us:

Behold, I tell you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality. But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “Death is swallowed up in victory. death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
~1 Corinthians 15:51-57  (Emphasis mine)

Dear friends, when that trumpet sounds, we (believers) will be snatched out of this world to meet Jesus in the air. (That is called the rapture.)  Death has no reign.  Just as Jesus was raised from the dead, so we who die before the rapture will be resurrected to eternal life.

God’s calendar is 100% accurate.  Jesus was the sacrificial Lamb, He was pierced and bruised for our transgressions, He was the first to raise from the dead (preparing the way for us), and He left the promised Holy Spirit to guide us.  We are awaiting the next event…the trumpet, signaling the rapture!

If you are reading this and do not know Jesus as your savior, today is the day.  We don’t know when the rapture will occur, but it could literally be any moment.  It is the next thing on God’s calendar, and those who miss it will be left to endure the tribulation…hell on earth, followed by eternal hell in a place beyond what can even be imagined.  Don’t miss your opportunity.

The Bible says:

There is someone reading this RIGHT NOW who is struggling to find meaning in life.  If that is YOU, stop what you are doing and read each of the verses linked above.  Then, pray this simple prayer, inviting Jesus to be your Savior:

Lord Jesus, I need You. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. I open the door of my life and receive You as my Savior and Lord. Thank You for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Take control of my life. Make me the kind of person You want me to be.  Amen

Those words are not magic, but if you prayed sincerely, asking Jesus to do those very things, you ARE now a child of God!  Welcome to the family….and keep your ears open for that trumpet sound!

PS: The best thing you can do now is tell a Christian friend, or go to a Bible-teaching church and let them know that you prayed that prayer.  We all need help to grow in our new lives and that’s where you will find it!

Be blessed my friend!

God’s Word: True Before the News Takes Place!

Hi friends!  Are you amazed at the Bible’s accuracy?  One one hand, we shouldn’t be surprised by it, if we believe the God who scripted it is all-knowing.  On the other hand, we should be amazed and inspired that everything in life (history, geology, anthropology, archaeology, etc) continually confirms the Bible’s veracity.  I just love that about our God and His Word…how about you!?!

Well, headlines confirm Bible prophecy and I was in awe of the Lord’s timing of things when I read headlines yesterday.  This will end with a twist, so follow carefully!

‘I’m Not Bluffing,’ Putin Tells the West, Announcing Advanced Nuclear Weaponry  Yesterday, Russian President Vladimir Putin gave his state-of-the-union address, in which saber-rattling was at its best!  He announced that Russia now has nuclear weapons with almost unlimited range and capability of avoiding missile defense systems.  In other words, he has come up with the mother of all nuclear weapons!  They can reach anywhere, and no one can touch them!

He made other outlandish claims that likely have various degrees of truth, wrapped in a layers of exaggeration.  I suspect we will soon find out how much is true and how much is lie, but the key points are these:

  • It is no secret that Putin is a power-hungry egomaniac who desperately wants to return Russia to world-domination.  He states it is to make the world a much more peaceful place.  How’s that peace plan going in Syria!?!
  • The Bible talks of the rise of a Russian czar that will gather the forces of several nations (Russia, Iran, Turkey, Libya and Sudan) and will attack Israel from the north to capture spoil and to seize plunder (Ezekiel 38:12).  Israel has oil and gas, and Russia needs it in order to maintain its supply dominance over Europe!
  • Putin complained in his speech that “no one listens.”  Sounds like a kid throwing a tantrum, doesn’t it?  But, in this case, it makes the “kid” very dangerous, because he is dangerously armed and is power-hungry enough to use those weapons.  He has absolutely no regard for human life.  Need proof?  He has NO qualms when Bashar al-Assad uses chemical weapons on his own people.  (He may even be encouraging it!)  Multiple times he has even denied that the Syrian regime has WMD’s. Dangerous!

New Satellite Photos Show Iran Establishing Another Base Near Damascus
A new Iranian base, just 8 miles from Damascus, has been discovered.  Two hangars, believed to be storing short- and medium-range missiles, are seen on satellite footage.  Additionally, the base is eerily similar to a Syrian base destroyed by Israel in December when found to be a relay post for shuttling missiles to Hezbollah in Lebanon.  (See more comparison photos at the link above.)

American and Israeli intelligence is aware of the dramatic increase in the number and quality of Iranian ballistic missiles now appearing on Iranian bases in Syria.  Keep in mind that Russia has significant military bases in Syria as well, and now has Su-57 fighter jets (Russia’s top-of-the-line) stationed there also.

What’s the point?

  • Again, refer to Ezekiel 38!  Russia and Iran will attack the Jewish state “on the mountains of Israel.”  Friends, the mountains are Mt Hermon and the area we know as the Golan Heights.  Damascus is less than 30 miles from Mt Hermon, and Iranian troops are massed even closer than that to Israel’s border!
  • While Russia is after oil and gas, Iran’s intent is to spread Shi’ite Islam all the way from Iran to the Mediterranean Sea.  Their motive is a spiritual, apocalyptic one.  Shi’ite Islam holds to the theology that Allah has called them to usher in the coming of the mahdi (Muslim messiah), and the way to do that is to create chaos and annihilate the Jews.  They believe they are called to do that!  Thus, it is not a political or military war…it is a spiritual one!  Christians, spiritual wars are fought in prayer!  We must pray for Israel, and for God’s people (Jews and Christians) to be obedient to God’s plan!

871,000 Jewish Believers in the US  Okay, I just threw you a curveball, didn’t I!  But we’re still on the same theme of news headlines confirming the Bible’s accuracy.  This is a really cool one!

I recommend you read that post by Joel Rosenberg for details of Jews coming to know Messiah.  However, my point here is this: the Bible clearly teaches that a veil covers the eyes of those bound by the Old Covenant (speaking of the Jewish people) because it is removed in Christ!  In fact, read this passage for yourself:

But their (sons of Israel) minds were hardened; for until this very day at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remains unlifted, because it is removed in Christ. But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart; but whenever a person turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away.Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.
~2 Corinthians 3:14-18

O, so rich!  Christ removes the veil when one turns to the Lord!  (Whether Jew or Gentile, by the way!)  With that, comes liberty; and the end result is we become transformed by the Spirit of God.

Friends, that is beginning to happen to our Jewish friends!  Their eyes are seeing the Messiah, and the Bible says that is what will happen in the last days!  In fact, Romans 11:25-26 tells us a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles comes in, and so ALL Israel will be saved!  If salvation is starting for the Jewish people, might it be that the fullness of the Gentiles is almost complete?

One day, the last Gentile to receive Christ will say, “Save me, Lord!” and suddenly we will all be caught up together with the Lord in the air!  (That’s the rapture.)  The Bible has told us throughout the centuries what will happen, and now headlines are confirming the Bible’s accuracy!

For those of us already saved by faith through God’s grace alone, it is time to live it out.  If you haven’t yet said, “Save me, Lord!” then we’re waiting on you, and you might not have another chance.  Please call upon the Lord and be saved.  Your eternity depends upon it!

Jewish Police Officer Finds Messiah

Jew First

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.
~Romans 1:16

Though God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, do you realize salvation was for the Jew first?  As Gentiles, God’s grace reached out to us when God preached the gospel to Abraham, then promised that all the families of the earth would be blessed (with salvation) through Abraham and his descendants! (Galatians 3:8, Genesis 12:3)

Unfortunately, a veil covers the eyes of the Jewish people and can only be removed when a person turns to the Lord.  (2 Corinthians 3:12-16)  Hear the testimony of this Jew whose eyes were unveiled when He turned to the Messiah.  Enjoy!