No matter what news source one looks at, everyone today is talking about the coronavirus (officially named COVID-19) which has now been designated a worldwide pandemic by the World Health Organization. The numbers of those infected and the deceased are increasing in greater numbers every day.
One of the fears has been that the virus would inevitably reach the millions of refugees in the Middle East. Although the extent is not really known yet, the virus has been reported by doctors in several of the Mideast nations. Pastor R received reports from Fallujah that Fatima, Mariam, and about 20 other HOB missionaries and volunteers have contracted the virus so far. I do not know about other locations yet, although word from Sahbander and Mortadah in Iran, is that the virus there, in spite of what is being reported, is not killing people by the hundreds, but rather by the thousands. Among the HOB community there, three families, including 28 people, have caught the virus so far.
The humanitarian disaster coming upon these people is hard to even imagine when the virus begins to spread in the heavily crowded refugee camps in Syria—especially among those who have had to flee from the Aleppo / Idlib region. Pastor R tells me that the situation up against the Turkish border where 1.5 million refugees or more have massed, is tragic. Hundreds of thousands are having to survive out in the open because there are not nearly enough available tents. Large numbers have already died from the flu this year and the coronavirus would prove to be yet much worse due to its high infection rate—especially under such crowded conditions.
As always, in the midst of all the misery, there are scores of people who hear the good news about Jesus, the true Messiah, and commit their souls into His control. That is the only source of hope in their world!
The innocent civilians continue to lose their lives due to military skirmishes and attacks, although the coronavirus has probably done more to bring a partial ceasefire into some areas than any agreements between political leaders or military counterparts. This however, will prove to be only temporary.
In spite of the onslaught of the virus, rockets and missiles continue to fly between combatants. The conflict between the US and Iran continues to ramp up and vast amounts of military equipment and extremely lethal weaponry continues to flow into the Middle East.
At the same time, one weather anomaly after another appears, seemingly almost out of nowhere. Pastor R said that skies went from almost red to practically black as the latest cyclone came ashore. This latest storm affected several Mideast nations, bringing devastation and death to populations that are already suffering.
Let’s continue praying for these dedicated and brave House of Blessing missionaries and volunteers. They are most definitely having to deal with harsh realities.
One of the websites I subscribe to is called “UNSEALED”. One of their founding authors, Gary, sent out a short article a couple days ago. I would like to share his thoughts with:
Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth. Psalm 46:10
Keep silent toward Me, O islands, and the peoples pass on (to) power, They come near, then they speak, “Together we draw near to judgment.” Isaiah 41:1
Be silent, all flesh, before the LORD, for He is aroused from His holy habitation! Zechariah 2:13
And YHWH is in His holy temple, Be silent before Him, all the earth! Habakkuk 2:20
YHWH is good to those awaiting for Him, to the soul that seeks Him. It is good when one stays and stands still for the salvation of YHWH. Lamentations 3:25-26
The world’s gods have been silenced. All major sports are cancelled. Bars are closed. Live entertainment is postponed. Markets have fallen. Mecca is empty. Mosques are empty. All Mormon gatherings are cancelled. Cult-of-personality megachurch gatherings are cancelled. The little religious activity that remains is Christian fellowship, church live-streams, and house church gatherings.
Travel is restricted. Hundreds of millions are quarantined in their houses and Coronavirus is now in 155 countries, so that number is bound to grow. Whether the virus is actually as dangerous as some claim or not is irrelevant to the fact that the whole world is coming to a standstill at this unique time in history. This is a moment of worldwide significance and the world will never be the same again.
God alone will be exalted in this day.
2000 years ago, Jesus said, “GO!”
…and He said to them, “Having gone into all the world, proclaim the good news to all the creation;” Mark 16:15 (LSV)
…having gone, then, disciple all the nations, immersing them into the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all, whatever i commanded you, and behold, I am with you all the days—until the full end of the age. Matthew 28:19-21
Now for the first time ever, the whole world is yelling, “STOP!”
Roughly 6,000 years ago, God said to fallen mankind, “Work!”
And now the whole world is saying, “STOP WORKING!”
The ancient Israelites crossed an earthly body of water—the parted Red Sea—when God delivered them from the threat of Pharaoh and his army.
The Church will cross a heavenly body of water, similarly parted, when God delivers his born-again people from the threat of Satan and his fallen angels (Revelation 12:3-5):
And God says, “Let an expanse be in the midst of the waters, and let it be separating between waters and waters.” And God makes the expanse, and it separates between the waters which are under the expanse, and the waters which are above the expanse: and it was so. Genesis 1:6-7 LSV
Satan swindled us out of our dominion all those thousands of years ago. Creation has suffered ever since, but we’re about to get the right to rule back (Revelation 2:26-29). As a baby is being born there is much noise and commotion, but right before the first cry—a silent pause.
For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. Romans 8:19
If not now, then soon. Very soon.
And Pharaoh has drawn near, and the sons of Israel lift up their eyes, and behold, the Egyptians are journeying after them, and they fear exceedingly, and the sons of Israel cry to YHWH. And they say to Moses, “Because there are no graves in Egypt, have you taken us away to die in a wilderness? What is this you have done to us—to bring us out from Egypt? Is this not the word which we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, Cease from us, and we serve the Egyptians; for it is better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in a wilderness?” And Moses says to the people, “Do not fear, station yourselves, and see the salvation of YHWH, which He does for you today; for as you have seen the Egyptians today, you will no more see them for all time; YHWH fights for you, and you keep silent.” Exodus 14:10-14
Gary (author, UNSEALED)
One phrase comes to my mind again and again… “Choose you this day whom you will serve!” The time to choose is not unlimited. In fact, the Age of Grace is speedily being brought to an end. The warning signs of the approach of the Day of the Lord are undeniable. The door to the ark is slowly closing. It is time!
Forever in His Service,
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