In the tenth chapter of Hebrews we find these words:
“…let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.” (Hebrews 10:22-25)
We live in a day and time when people in our world are questioning what the future holds. We read the current news and see war and rumors of war everywhere. Here are ten of the areas of concern on our planet today:
- In Ukraine, we see that there is an enormous build-up for major war. This has been going on for months, but now is showing signs of possibly getting out of control.
- We see North and South Korea lobbing artillery shells at one another and North Korea is threatening to unleash weapons the world has not yet ever seen. Whether they really have such weapons is doubtful, but their insatiable desire to be one of the “big” players is not something to ignore. The threat of nuclear weapons is hardly an empty threat.
- South Sudan is still in the midst of a civil war and there are no signs of it ending.
- There is the chaos in Nigeria, partly due to Boko Haram.
- Then we have Somalia and its continued struggle to actually have a working, functioning government…all while trying to stop al-Shabab from creating mayhem and chaos.
- The turmoil on the African continent also continues in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where the official government is having to deal with numerable militias. Whole villages continue to be massacred and efforts to quell the violence see little success.
- Afghanistan saw the worst violence in of this century in 2014. Even though Afghanistan has a legitimate government in place, the Taliban is greatly increasing its power and violent acts are becoming more and more commonplace. Afghanistan, in 2015 is seen as one of the top ten nations in the world in danger of war breaking out once again.
- Yemen has exploded into fire that is fueled from several sectarian sources. Whereas the Houthis are being supported by Iran, a Shiite Muslim nation, a coalition of Sunni nations, headed mainly by Saudi Arabia and including the U.S., has sent in hundreds of fighter jets from their individual air forces.
- Then there is ISIS, which seems to have its fighters and influence intertwined in every Middle East or North African cauldron.
- Libya is a very troubled nation. Colonel Gadaffi was a despot without many fans, but the “Arab Spring”, which resulted in the end of his dictatorship and eventual killing left Libya in chaos, accentuated by the Benghazi terrorist attack. Libya’s troubles have spilled into Niger and Mali as well.
When one looks at the plethora of wars and rumors of wars threatening Planet Earth in 2015, can anyone get a handle on the full extent of the the apocalyptic dangers being posed in the Middle East today? The complexities of national relationships involved are the fodder of thousands of books, articles, and editorials today. One thing that we know for sure…it will lead to war…major war…and Israel will continue to be in the bulls-eye until the return of the Messiah! He warned us this would be the case!
Why do I bring up these many conflicts in relation to “wars and rumors of wars”? I do so to emphasize that we are facing the very end of the age that Jesus warned us to be watching for.
In this update, I won’t go into detail on all of the other things He instructed us to watch for, but television news, the internet, and newspapers all over the world tell us of famines that are everywhere, violence escalating, pestilences popping up all around the planet. Animals, birds, and fish are dying everywhere by the multiplied millions! The cosmic threats, which Jesus also warned about—for the most part are being hidden or ignored by the main governments of the world, but are more real today than ever in the history of mankind!
Here is what really bothers me, in fact, it scares me. I live in the affluent West. I am one of America’s millions of immigrants. I was born in Germany to parents who grew up under Stalin’s evil rule in the Soviet Union in German colonies in and around Odessa in the Ukraine. My parents managed to escape the Soviet Union just in time to witness the fall of Nazi Germany. They fled with me to the United States in order to get as far away from the Soviet Union as they possibly could. They came to the “Land of the Free and the Brave.” I came to America in 1952 via Ellis Island in New York at 3 years of age. I grew up with parents who taught me from the very beginning not only to appreciate the freedom we have had in this great nation socially, but also to appreciate the freedom of religion here. Since I became a believer in Jesus Christ as my Saviour in 1954, I have witnessed the near capitulation of the American Church to modernism, secularism, and humanism. The Church in America today is mostly either asleep, completely in a coma, or almost dead! The once glorious Church has compromised and negotiated away its belief system—especially the “Absolutes” that cannot be put on the bargaining table. These are doctrines like: The true identity of our GOD as the absolute Creator of everything, His omnipotence, omniscience, and omnipresence, the death, resurrection, and absolute deity of the Son of God–the Messiah Jesus, the virgin birth through the Jewish girl Mary, and, the one and only path to true innocence and righteousness before Almighty GOD…through Messiah Jesus and His sacrificial death on the cross for the sins of the entire human race, and of course, His return as the KING of Kings and LORD of Lords.
It is the lack of URGENCY that scares me. Pastors, teachers, evangelists; friends, relatives, and acquaintances fail to recognize the critical hour we live in! School is about to start for the children for fall 2015. Football season has been gearing up for weeks. Many people have been out boating, water skiing, camping, going on vacations, and making the most of the summer. None of this is wrong. It is not sin…unless it is keeping us from recognizing the hour that we are living in! Here’s a thought: Can we even imagine this year’s football season not being completed due to national or international catastrophe’s? This might just happen…
The world economic system is teetering on absolute disaster. There isn’t a top economist that is not aware of this, but governments keep the conveyor belts of tax returns running as long as they possibly can. Economic disaster cannot be avoided any longer. The entire world money system is going to be reset…and not to the advantage of anyone other than those in control. What will you do when the banks are closed for bank holidays? What if you are not able to cash your check? What if the entire transportation system is shut down because of the reset? Will it cause your priorities to be realigned? I would hope so; in fact, that may just be what the “doctor” orders! The remnant Church will all of a sudden have to live by faith. Something to think about…
For those who are living in the Middle East, there is no problem in recognizing the brutality of the times! In fact, most that know anything of the Word of God will recognize that we are facing the end of the age. But, what about those of us in the affluent West? We are not recognizing the signs of the times! We don’t see that the curtain is about to be dropped on our privileged lifestyle—Things as we know them are coming to a sudden end, and not in our children’s lifetime, but in OURS!
I see people everywhere busy…TOO busy! There is no sin in being busy, but if it is all the things that keep us from our intimate walk with God, it’s no better than the golden calf erected in the wilderness by the children of Israel. Football parties, birthday parties, work parties, promotion parties, barbeque parties, beach parties, etc. None are WRONG! But…where is our heart? The proof of the pudding is when it comes to small gatherings, intimate times of Christian fellowship, seeking the Lord, times of humbling ourselves before the Lord. That is where we lose our interest. Nothing about that touches our “fun” button! We have other things we’d rather do! When it comes to an evening designed for nothing more than spending time in the Word of God, prayer, and worship, and we decline because we might miss one of our favorite TV shows or it just doesn’t quite fit “our favorite” agenda for an evening of this kind, where are our priorities really? What is the matter with us? The Lord cautioned us about this when He said: “Love not the world, nor the things of this world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” We have some choices to make! Time is running out, and very quickly!
When things like this come across my mind, I realize that it must sound harsh and judgmental but, maybe our consciences need to be pricked and we need to get ourselves out of the way! It is much better to be angered by some internet preacher than be confronted by the God of the Universe Himself one day soon Who knows our every thought! We tend to want to put our “requirements” on the times we are going to “sacrifice” for our “spiritual” times with Him–especially if it’s someone else’s idea to do so, but why would we do this? Could there be some unrepentant pride there?
It was due to some contemplative thinking about the conditions believers in the Middle East (or other difficult locations on earth) live under that brought me to the above diatribe. Most of us are guilty of spiritual apathy and lack of true unquestioning dedication to our Master when things have gone so easily for us. But, for those who have not had it so easy, having made the choice of Who their LORD and Master truly is, it is a simple choice! There are only two choices; either for or against. When one’s life is on the line, there are really no compromises to be had. You either serve GOD or Ba’al. You either choose the Almighty GOD and His Messiah, KING of Kings, or Muhammad the false prophet of the false god Allah. There is no in between. Muslims who commit their lives to Jeshua God, realize that they may have to die for that commitment.
How about you? Is your dedication to the KING of the Ages solid? I pray it is, because you might be put in a position of proving it sooner than you might like. Western culture and freedom is falling fast. What we have considered our “right” is being taken from us quickly. God is calling us to pursue Him, and at ALL costs!
As I spoke with Pastor R***** a few days ago, he shared with me the horror of the great many innocents that were losing their lives due to the incessant bombing campaigns. Not only the men, but mothers and their little children were being killed. As we become emotionally and socially touched by this horror, we demand social justice and the rights of the individuals…but is that really the problem? The root of the problem goes much deeper. One of the definitions of the word “sin” has to do with the malevolent organized force against us; originating from the fallen Lucifer himself, who, along with all of his vicious, malignant, rancorous followers hates the human with a hellish passion we cannot even comprehend! In our message to the human race on this planet as Christ-followers, we must point them to the ONLY answer to the horror the human race has become subject to, the Almighty Messiah, Jesus Himself. There is no other answer!!
My friend told me how the 500 or so missionaries are meeting in small groups of people all over the Middle East, all the way from northern Jordan to Syria, to Iraq, to Kurdistan, to Iran. The volunteer missionaries are teaching the new believers about Jesus and why there is NO other solution for the problem the human race is born with since the fall in the Garden of Eden, the problem of sin. The missionaries hand out as many Bibles as they have available and when they run out, they copy as much material as they can copy on whatever printers available, teaching the people the basics of the Gospel of Jesus found in the teachings the Lord has made available.
As the missionaries have followed this plan of meeting in small groups, they have been much less likely to be caught and murdered for sharing a religious teaching other than Islam. The Widow Sisterhood has been very effective in their ministry to the war-wounded. They work night and day, going through the battlefields, searching body after body to find those still breathing. When they find those who are still alive, they quickly attend to them, doing everything they can to keep them alive and to share the good news of the Kingdom of God before they enter eternity. Many hundreds have been reached every week, just like this. Others, and there are many of them, have been touched supernaturally. There have been a great many who have been healed outright; with open wounds sealed up, compound fractures mended to the point there is nothing left of the injuries after Spirit-filled prayer. How great is our GOD? There is NONE like Him!!
In this most desperate time in human history, multitudes are not only in the valley of decision as described in Joel 3:14, but they are making that very crucial decision–deciding to stake their very eternity on the Messiah, Jesus! How glorious our grand reunion will be in the heavenlies one of these day so very soon!! We will be able to meet and walk with every one of these wonderful saints that have been reached–just in the nick of time! I am going to be there, are YOU? I pray so!
Along the way, there are not only the “wheat” that Jesus spoke of, but also the “tares”. Rather than pull the tares prematurely, we will allow the Master of All to take care of that at the end of the age. Thank God we don’t have to do this! Woe to those however who have played the game, been counterfeits of the true, messengers of the truth when they were messengers of evil! God will judge all according to their works that have been recorded! At the same time, thank the Holy One that He sees ALL!! He makes no mistakes and will judge all…reward all…condemn all…for the things that really are what they are!! I rest in this, and I hope and pray you do as well.
The work of House of Blessing continues, and will do so until that great heavenly horn is blown along with the voice of God, which calls us HOME!! For those that the Lord speaks to, please link arms with us. Prayer and financial support is always welcomed! God has…and continues to multiply all of the gifts! We serve a GREAT GOD!
There is a great need for another group sized tent for teaching purposes. They have been quite effective over the last 3-1/2 years and another one is needed. Thank You.
House Of Blessing; P.O. Box 2093; Redmond, OR 97756
(The photos of the bombing campaign in Douma [a suburb of Damascus] are enough to give one a pretty good picture of what all is happening in the Mideast. There are hundreds of links that show the same…)