Sunday, January 31, 2010

More news...

First, one can always count on Iran's president to come up with a new and "interesting" quote:

"Ahmadinejad: Whoever controls the Mideast controls the world". Interesting quote. The antichrist will direct his attention to the Middle East, at least early in his reign. Maybe Ahmadinejad isn't completely psychotic after all.

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The second article, once again, comes under the heading of "Rumors of war" (aka "preparations for war"):

"U.S. rushes Gulf defense systems"

One quote says it all:

"The United States has begun beefing up its approach to defending its Persian Gulf allies against potential Iranian missile strikes, officials say. The defenses are being stepped up in advance of possible increased sanctions against Iran."

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This article (below) is worth reading in its entirety:

"Who will blink first?"

This article discusses the strategy that Iran will most likely implement, and on that, I have to agree wholeheartedly. This pattern of Iran using Hezbollah and Hamas as their proxies is well established and there is no reason to think that Iran would discontinue this practice.

Quotes below:

"...achieving nuclear capability during President Ahmadinejad's tenure is said to be a mandate of the Iran Revolutionary Guards Corp (IRGC). With the IRGC's significant influence and control over the Iranian economy, security, public policy and military, the goal will undoubtedly be reached."

"Given its significant investments in strategic planning in conventional and unconventional military engagement, and following established patterns (Gaza, Lebanon, Iraq, and Yemen), it seems unlikely that a IRGC would launch the first strike directly from Iran. It is more likely that this would be put into motion by an IRGC proxy much closer to Israel. The IRGC could then embark on conventional warfare to cover its tracks. With media and public opinion generally unsympathetic to Israel, it is not beyond belief that Iran could convince people or develop doubts in people's minds that the nuclear first strike was instead conventional warfare striking Israel's own nuclear war-heads and giving the impression of a nuclear attack."

"A first strike on Israel would also present a convenient opportunity for Israel's enemies to engage in further destruction. Israel, perceived as weakened and vulnerable, might be seen as ripe for a multi-pronged attack by those who want to see the Jewish state destroyed. In fact it would be far easier for the IRGC to let the Arabs finish the job all on their own. Strategically, the IRGC's expansionist strategies would work perfectly in the aftermath of such events."

"A first strike from a closer proximity would be devastating to Israel, possibly irrecoverable, considering Israel's size versus the coverage of the strike. Being somewhat larger, Iran would survive a second strike by Israel quite well. Not only might a first strike on Israel eliminate its capacity to launch a second strike from land, but Israel might also find it hard to justify launching an attack on Iran if the first strike originated from a third country. That would only bring more international condemnation of Israel. With any missile launched towards Israel from anywhere having potential to be "the one," Israel's future military success will be defined by how well it can address incoming missiles of any kind. Investment in anti-ballistic missile technologies will continue to be a priority."

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That is an interesting premise: even a nuclear strike by Iran could be launched by one of their proxies such as Hamas and Hezbollah. Add Syria to the mix. It makes perfect sense if you are Iran's leader for the reasons given in this commentary.

How this whole scenario will roll out is anyone's guess, but it seems logical that extensive involvement by these proxies will be part of the overall process.

As stated in Zechariah 12; Israel will be surrounded by her enemies in the last days. As Jesus stated in Matthew 24, this last generation will be one defined by "wars and rumors of war". Indeed. We're most definitely living in the last days of this final generation.

Friday, January 29, 2010

In the news...

"Iran's Supreme Leader: Zion Regime to be Annihilated"

Thats one headline today. In this article Iran's "Supreme Leader" once again makes his mission clear: the destruction of Israel. According to Iranian state-run Fars News Agency (FNA), Khamenei stated "the region would soon witness annihilation of the Zionist regime." He added that the timetable for the destruction would depend on "the functioning of the Islamic countries and Muslim nations."

What does he know? Is he possibly referencing the epic invasion of Israel as described in Ezekiel 38-39? If so, based on the massive invasion, and NOT knowing biblical prophecy, I might be tempted to agree that he could gather a coalition which could APPEAR to be capable of destroying Israel, but there is just one tiny catch: God is watching the situation and He personally will handle this situation. Too bad Iran's "Supreme Leader" doesn't know this. It will ultimately be his undoing.

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"Israel slams Iran as world recalls Holocaust"

Quotes worth repeating:

"Israel's leaders, with Iran on their minds, vowed never again to allow the "hand of evil" to kill Jews as the world marked International Holocaust Memorial Day on Wednesday."

"In Berlin, Israeli President Shimon Peres told the German parliament Iran posed a threat to the whole world and lashed out at its president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who denies the Holocaust and has called for the destruction of the Jewish state."

"From this site, I vow as the leader of the Jewish state that we will never again allow the hand of evil to destroy the life of our people and the life of our state. Never again," Netanyahu said at the Auschwitz ceremony.


The rhetoric between Iran and Israel is surreal. WIth one country threatening to destroy another, and that country responding in kind that it will never happen is almost weekly rhetoric in regional newspapers and this bizarre scenario barely receives attention in the US press. Interesting.

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"Med Union: Deal between Spain, Jordan to Boost Med Agenda"

I actually found this article the most interesting of anything read this week. Just from a small, unnoticed "nugget" contained in this article which stands out (see quote below). In yesterdays' combined EU/Med Union meeting we see the following:

"However, it was the situation in the Middle East that was the focus of the meeting. The Spanish Premier did not hide his cautious optimism, with the conviction that ''conditions exist to make a definitive step towards peace'' in the region. He also confirmed Spain's support of resuming negotiations in the Middle East and the recognition of the Palestinian state to realise the two-state solution. King Abdullah II agreed with Zapatero on the importance of Palestinian national reconciliation and on the need to involve other decisive players in the peace process to encourage the creation of a Palestinian state and to guarantee the security of Israel."


So. There it is. The Med Union here in its early stages with a leader just "appointed" is now stating that the "situation in the Middle East" was the focus of the meeting (interesting, no?), and not only creating "peace", but

"TO GUARANTEE THE SECURITY OF ISRAEL"

Fascinating. That is almost verbatim to the biblical prophecy which states that the Revived Roman Empire and its leader (later to be known as the "antichrist") will respond to the calls for "peace and security" in the Middle East and "confirm the covenant" which finally grants (temporary) peace in the region.

I have always assumed that the ONLY way to "confirm" peace in and around Israel would be to have peace-keeping forces in the region. My best guess is that the antichrist offers EU peace keeping forces to plant themselves squarely in Israel in order to "confirm" the agreed covenant. Now we see these quotes coming from the Med Union.

Exactly as I would expect. This may represent the beginning of the process. How else would the EU/Med Union "guarantee" peace in the region?

Once again, everything is moving step-by-step in the manner dictated by biblical prophecy.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Lebanon: Conflict widens to Syria

In an article linked here, we see some very revealing quotes in relationship to fulfillment of Isaiah 17, the prophetic scriptures which inform us that Damascus will be destroyed completely, and never to exist as a city again. I've always found it interesting that in most international references to Syria, the term "Damascus" is used, to reflect the known center, or "seat of power" within the country.

Additionally, we are seeing more and more news which describe any future Israel-Hezbollah conflicts as guaranteed to extend into Syria - this article is just one of many.

This article does contain a number of interesting quotes:

"Any future strike at Hizbullah that does not take into account its status as a client of Syria, is unlikely to land a decisive blow."
"In the last week, senior Israeli policymakers made statements of an uncharacteristically bellicose nature regarding Syria."

"It is unlikely that these statements were made because of sudden random irritation toward Israel's hostile northeastern neighbor. Rather, the statements probably constituted part of a message of deterrence to Damascus."

"The need to project deterrence itself derives from a series of significant changes currently under way on the ground in Lebanon - reflecting Syria's ever tighter alignment with Hizbullah and the pro-Iranian regional bloc of which it is a part."

"These changes take place against the backdrop of awareness that the tactics likely to be adopted by Israel in a future war with Hizbullah carry with them the very real possibility that Syria could, on one level or another, be drawn in."

"On Saturday night, Minister-without-Portfolio Yossi Peled said that another conflict on the northern border was a "matter of time." Peled noted that in the event of such a conflict breaking out, Israel would hold "Syria and Lebanon alike responsible."

"Hizbullah has in the last weeks deployed advanced Syrian-made surface-to-surface M-600 missiles on the territory of Lebanon. The missiles, which according to Jane's Defence Weekly are copies of the Iranian Fateh-110 system, have a range of 250 kilometers and carry a 500-kg warhead."

"They bring the entirety of central Israel within Hizbullah's range. The missiles are precision-guided, meaning that in the event of renewed conflict, Hizbullah would be able to use them to target military facilities or heavily populated areas."

"According to Jane's, the deployment of the M-600s adds to concerns already expressed by Israel at Syrian supplying of the (relatively unsophisticated) SA-2 air defense system and the SS-N-26 surface-to-sea missile to Hizbullah."

"Syria's undaunted and increased support for Hizbullah appears to reflect a clear strategic turn taken by Damascus. Lebanese analyst Tony Badran this week drew attention to a recent and relevant report in the Qatari daily al-Watan which quoted Syrian sources who claimed that "a strategic decision has been taken not to allow Israel to defeat the resistance movement."

"But beyond the specific issue of weapons systems, the logic of confrontation in Lebanon suggests that Syria may find it hard to avoid direct engagement in a future Israel-Hizbullah clash.
Since 2006, Lebanon's eastern border with Syria has formed the key conduit for weapons supplies to Hizbullah. And Hizbullah is reported to have relocated its main military infrastructure north of the Litani River, in the Bekaa Valley, in areas close to the Syrian border."

"Which suggests that if Israel wants in a future conflict to strike a real blow against Hizbullah, this implies an Israeli ground incursion into the Bekaa.
Should such an incursion take place, the Syrians would be intimately involved in supplying Hizbullah just across the border, and the possibility of Syrian casualties at Israeli hands would become very real."


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The bottom line: Israel is calling Syria out for their support of Hezbollah, and any future conflict with Hezbollah (which appears somewhat imminent; perhaps this summer as most conflicts in the region seem to occur during summer months) will not only extend into Lebanon, but most likely Syria as well.

What, exactly will lead to the destruction of Damascus, as described in Isaiah 17? This is anyone's guess. Many prophecy watchers assume that Israel will complete this prophecy with a military action against Damascus, and this may indeed prove true, but the prophecy doesn't state how this happens. I have always considered some sort of an accident involving WMDs, which are located in Damascus. It is impossible to know exactly how this destruction of Damascus happens, but it is crystal clear from prophecy that it WILL happen, as no ambiguity can be found in this prophecy.

More rumors of war. The drumbeat for this conflict continues on a daily basis. Its just a matter of time.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Mediterranean Union Back in the News

"Jordanian formally takes over Mediterranean Union"

In this article we see the following:

"Ahmad Massaadeh, a former Jordanian ambassador to the EU and NATO, has formally been named head of the Mediterranean Union project, making him the first leader of the forum created in 2008, France's foreign minister said Tuesday."

"The appointment of the secretary general constitutes a decisive step in the institutional construction of the Union", Bernard Kouchner said in a statement."

"The foreign minister said the objectives of the Union for the Mediterranean (UPM) are to "create a space of peace, solidarity and prosperity through cooperation projects and to develop areas around the Mediterranean region".

"The Mediterranean Union project brings together EU members with states from north Africa, the Balkans, the Arab world and Israel in a bid to foster cooperation in one of the world's most volatile regions."

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It is interesting that the Mediterranean Union seems to operate very quietly, without much international press. While considered as an extension (aka "growth") of the EU, the Mediterranean Union could easily be the organization that produces the antichrist - very much in line with biblical prophecy, as the Med Union represents the inevitable growth of the revived Roman Empire of Daniel 2, 7 and 9.

One quote above seems highly germane to this line of reasoning:

"The foreign minister said the objectives of the Union for the Mediterranean are to 'create a space of peace, solidarity and prosperity through cooperation projects..'"

In other words, exactly what the antichrist will do, initially in his rise to power.

This is worth watching - any significant news coming from the Med Union. The Roman Empire of our generation is growing and becoming stronger by the day - and barely gets noticed. As stated in Daniel 12:10:

"but those who are wise will understand."

We'll be watching - just as Jesus instructed.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Middle East Update

Mike Mickey (Rapture Alert) has written a timely and accurate commentary on the alliances which are have been strengthening in the Middle East over the past several years, exactly as one would expect according to biblical prophecy. I also agree with his conclusion - we are rapidly approaching the last days of this generation:


End Time War Alliances Forming

by Michael G. Mickey
(1-25-10)

Matthew 24:6:

And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all [these things] must come to pass, but the end is not yet.

There's nothing new under the sun in relation to the enemies of Israel destined to make war against her plotting to make trouble, but let's take a look at a few notable examples of this in the news and what it could translate into in the prophetic, potentially near future.

Russia and Turkey: Determined to be strategic partners

In the prophetic future, according to Ezekiel 38-39, Russia and a confederacy of nations geographically near Israel are going to attack the Jewish nation, taking them by surprise. Here at RaptureAlert.com, I've been telling my readers, from long before it was as apparent as it is now, that one of Russia's future allies, Turkey, was going to become increasingly friendly with Russia and Iran in preparation of that prophesied event, commonly referred to as the battle of Gog-Magog, and it's coming around! Is it EVER coming around!

Panorama.am is reporting that Turkey and Russia are determined to become strategic partners. While, in this instance, the strategic partnership being addressed appears to be economic in nature, a warming of relations between Moscow and Ankara has been underway for some time now as I've documented in the past and plan to continue to. Simultaneously, relations between Ankara and Jerusalem have become very strained, all of this setting the stage for prophetic fulfillment to occur at a time known only to God. But about that time? Conditionally, at the very least, it's coming into view on the prophetic horizon.

Drawing further attention to Turkey and Russia's budding partnership is a current WorldNetDaily.com article entitled: NATO member aligning itself with Russia

The headline says it all, doesn't it? Remarkable!

Syria and Hezbollah preparing to war with Israel?

It's hard not to discuss the prophesied battle of Gog-Magog without noticing who isn't going to be participating in the battle, namely Syria. Could this be because the prophesied destruction of Damascus foretold by the prophet Isaiah will have taken place before Gog-Magog? Could be!

Isaiah 17:1:

The burden of Damascus. Behold, Damascus is taken away from [being] a city, and it shall be a ruinous heap.
Can you imagine it? Damascus, agreed by many to be the longest continuously-inhabited city on the planet, is someday going to be nothing more than a ruinous heap, so utterly destroyed it is no longer going to be a city! The imagery is apocalyptic in magnitude, especially when we consider that Damascus is home to 1.5 - 2 million residents, but the possibility of Isaiah's prophecy being fulfilled in our time? It's anything but hard to conceive in light of Syria's possession of a variety of WMDs and effective delivery systems. Ignite a war between Israel and Syria, toss in the unpredicatability and 'death wish mentality' of a terrorist organization like Hizballah into the mix, and anything, even something horrific, could occur to one or both parties.

To that end Israel Today is reporting, in an article headlined "Syria, Hizballah preparing for war with Israel", the following, in part:
Pan-Arab newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat reported on Monday that Syria has begun calling up reserve military forces in anticipation of a full-scale war with Israel.

Officials in Syria and from Lebanon's Hizballah terrorist militia have been saying for the past week that they are being threatened by Israeli military maneuvers along the Israel-Lebanon border, and expect the Israeli army to launch a surprise attack on Hizballah positions in Lebanon.

According to UN Resolution 1701 that ended the 2006 Lebanon War, Hizballah is not supposed to have any positions in southern Lebanon, but the international peacekeeping force on the ground there has not enforced those terms.
Not only do we have the above to consider in relation to war potentially breaking out between Syria and Israel, which could quickly spiral out of control, Syria has already threatened, as plainly as I believe possible, that any military conflict between Hizballah terrorists and Israel will result in a state of war between Israel and Syria as well. (Source: Arutz Sheva) The stage for Isaiah 17:1 to be fulfilled is essentially set, no small thanks to the United Nations.

The impotency of the United Nations and its so-called 'peacekeepers' in hampering Hizballah from re-arming itself after the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict can't be overstated in giving rise to the tensions that presently threaten to bring war and potential disaster to the troubled Middle East once again. And one of these days, potentially soon? The kettle that's been stewing for so long, so to speak, is going to boil over. It could happen today. Literally. I pray not for the sake of all the lost souls who would die as a result, but it could! It's enough to make one shudder, isn't it?

The end times. Folks, we're living in them! Tell someone - ANYONE - about Jesus Christ and the free gift of salvation today that they might be saved. After all, who knows what tomorrow may bring?

Monday, January 25, 2010

This Year

Thats the word coming from a so-called "secret intelligence" dossier being reviewed by U.S., Israeli, German and Austrian governments, according to an expose by Germany's Der Spiegel magazine: Iran will have a nuclear bomb by year's end.

Secret Report: Iran will Have Nuclear Bomb This Year"

Quotes:

"Western intelligence agencies say FEDAT and the Ministry of Science are working together to create the bomb. They also believe that a primitive nuclear weapon the size of a truck will be completed this year."


"Fears of a nuclear Iran have been compounded by information provided by Iran's former deputy defense minister, Ali Reza Asgari, and nuclear scientist Shahram Amiri, both of whom defected to the United States and were given new identities."


Interestingly, another article appeared today, almost as a mirror to the above:


"Netanyahu urges world to fight threats on Israel"

Quotes:


"Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday called on the international community to confront those calling for the destruction of the Jewish state."

"The comments, made on the eve of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, were said to be directed at Iran, reports the Associated Press"

"Speaking about the rise in anti-Semitism, Netanyahu said that the world must act quickly to stop the denials of truth."

“This is a crime against the Jews, and a crime against humanity, and it is a test of humanity,” the Israeli premier said, according to the Haaretz newspaper. “We shall see in the following weeks whether the international community deals with this evil before it spreads,” he added."

"Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has repeatedly questioned the Holocaust and has called for Israel to be “wiped off the map”.

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This speech was clearly directed towards the Iranian threat. Mr Netanyahu seems determined to let the world (media) know what the threat from Iran represents to Israel. It appears that he is laying the groundwork and setting the stage for a future attack on Iran.

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Also of note today, is the seemingly never-ending story on earthquakes. I believe this is an important story, because in some ways it serves as a very good indicator for the overall status of the "signs" that we constantly monitor - just something I have noticed over the years.

Just today - one day only, we have seen the following:

Seven separate earthquakes > 5.0:

- Kodiak Islands
- Aleutian Islands
- Japan (5.5)
- Indonesia
- Tonga Islands
- Kermadec Islands
- Peru-Brazil area (5.8)

Additionally, there was a 4.9 in Indonesia and a 4.7 in Guatemala. Of course, there were many more quakes, but these were the noteworthy ones worth mentioning.

As mentioned before, the earthquake story refuses to go away. But redundancy is part of birth pains - the pains keep coming only faster and more severe. So I guess the redundancy thing will continue to cycle as far as prophecy related news.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Persecution back in the news:

"Burma: Not in my Backyard"

This article is so disturbing yet so typical for our times, it must be repeated in its entirety:


BURMA: NOT MY BACKYARD

“The world needs to know about the genocide that is happening today in Burma.”
— Patrick Klein, Vision Beyond Borders

The Burmese army is carrying out a massive killing campaign against its people, and the world is unaware, Patrick Klein of Vision Beyond Borders told VOM staff.

According to Patrick, who recently returned from Burma and Thailand, more than 500,000 people have been killed in Burma (also known as Myanmar) in the last 30 years. More than 3,300 villages have been burned to the ground by the Burmese military, and thousands of children have lost parents from brutal attacks by Burmese soldiers. About 1 million Burmese refugees have fled across the border to Thailand, where they wait in uncertainty. At any moment they might be sent back to Burma to face certain death.

Even refugee camps in Thailand are not safe from Burmese soldiers. They frequently cross the shallow river separating Thailand and Burma to poison water supplies and kill or kidnap refugees, whom they sometimes use as human mine sweepers. The Thai generals who rule the area work hand in hand with Burma’s ruling military junta regime and grow rich through the illegal drug trade that profits them both.

Patrick said the genocide is both an ethnic cleansing and a reaction against pro-democracy movements in Burma, but it also has a specifically anti-Christian agenda. When the head of a monastery asked soldiers if he should warn Buddhist monks to leave a conflict area, the soldier replied, “No, we are not going to harm the Buddhists. We are only against the Christians.”
One heavily targeted Burmese minority group is the Karen people. Historically Christian, today about 40 percent of the Karen people are Christians. A Burmese official boldly stated recently, “Soon there will be no Christians in this nation. You will only be able to see a Karen person in a picture in a museum.”

In the midst of this horror, God is at work in Burma. Many people are trusting their lives to God. One of the believers went so far as to tell Patrick, “Without this genocide, maybe this worship would not be happening, and people would not be coming to Christ.”

Patrick said he was saddened and horrified by conditions in the Burmese refugee camps he visited. He heard many stories of suffering, but what affected him most was an enthusiastic worship service by a group of 86 orphans who are cared for by a Baptist pastor. “We had a worship service from 4 p.m. until 9 p.m. Then at 10 p.m., the kids came back and asked if we could go on worshiping! They have little happiness in their lives, but what they do have is the joy of the Lord,” Patrick said.

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I wish this was the only story regarding recent persecution, but unfortunately it is not:

"Algeria: Update: Church Burned"

"Iraq: Elderly Christian Killed"

"Malaysia: Churches Firebombed"

"Iran: Christian Arrested"

"Algeria: Muslims block Service"

"Azerbaijan: Communities Threatened"

"Indonesia: Muslims Destroy Church"

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As Jesus stated:

"Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death and you will be hated by all nations because of me...Because of the increase in wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but HE WHO STANDS FIRM TO THE END WILL BE SAVED." (Matthew 24:9-13. Emphasis mine).

Also:

"Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you, because of me. REJOICE AND BE GLAD BECAUSE GREAT IS YOUR REWARD IN HEAVEN, because great is your reward in heaven..." (Matthew 5:11-12. Emphasis mine).

In our daily prayers, in our bible studies and church services, lets all remember to pray for our brothers and sisters who are currently enduring persecution - whether they are imprisoned, in hiding, attempting to witness for Christ, transporting bibles, holding bible studies in secret, missionaries, or whatever their plight may be - we really need to continually pray for these brave, courageous Christians.

In the news...

"New EU-Mediterranean club opens in Barcelona"

In this article above, we see the continued growth and expansion of the EU/Med Union.

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"US welcomes EU's new foreign policy powers"

In this article, we see Hilary Clinton welcoming the "upgrading" of EU foreign policy "under the Lisbon Treaty". The most interesting quote from this article:

"These are historic times for the EU. I expect that in decades to come, we will look back on the Lisbon Treaty and the maturation of the EU that it represents as a major milestone in our world's history," Ms Clinton told press in Washington on Thursday (21 January)."

A major milestone in our world's history....Has Hillary been reading biblical prophecy?

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"Israel, Hezbollah inching toward military confrontation"

"Confrontation on the northern border a matter of time"

Interesting quotes:


"Also on Saturday, the Washington Post quoted analysts saying Hezbollah has moved its long-range-rocket sites deep into northern Lebanon, a move that threatens to broaden any future conflict with Israel into a war between the two countries."

"Hezbollah's redeployment indicates that the group's next clash with Israel is unlikely to focus on the border as in the 2006 Second Lebanon War, instead moving deeper into Lebanon, according to the Washington Post."

"The group "has been fortifying lots of different areas," Judith Palmer Harik, a Hezbollah scholar in Beirut, told the newspaper. With UN and Lebanese forces "packed along the border," she said, "we are looking at a much more expanded battle in all senses of the word."

There are several ominous quotes. The fact that Hezbollah has the capability to move their missile launching sites deeper and deeper into Lebanon, will indeed expand the next war with Hezbollah. It will most likely expand into Syria as well, since Syria is providing the arms to Hezbollah.

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"Mitchell pitches a new 5-Point Plan for Middle East Negotiations"

Just another pitch to get Israel to recede back to the "pre-1967" borders. Nothing to see here - this proposal has been made approximately 17,821 times previously (my sarcastic estimation)...

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Oh, since we're on the news today, there was a 5.2 quake in Bolivia early this morning. Additionally, there was a 4.7 in Costa Rica. By a glance of the map, it appears that the earthquakes are moving north from the southern tip of South America and south from Central America (converging?). I have no idea if this has any meaning, its just a casual observation. (Map)

While we're on earthquakes, it looks like Yellowstone is also experiencing significantly more activity:
"Yellowstone swarm passes 901 quakes in five days as scientists watch closely". According to this article, the current "swarm" is one of the largest ever recorded at the park. This is always worth watching as Yellowstone can produce a "super volcano".

Friday, January 22, 2010

Rumors of war...Rumors of Earthquakes

Well, rumors of earthquakes aren't exactly prophetic but actual earthquakes are. It has often been stated that the worst scenario for the US would be an earthquake along the New Madrid fault:

"Mississippi Delta earthquake: America's Haiti waiting to happen?"

Quotes:

"One of the strongest series of earthquakes ever to hit the United States happened not in Alaska or along California's San Andreas fault, but in southeast Missouri along the Mississippi River."

"In 1811 and 1812, the New Madrid fault zone that zig zags through five states shook so violently that it shifted furniture in Washington, D.C., and rang church bells in Boston. The series of temblors changed the course of the Mississippi River near Memphis, and historical accounts claim the river even flowed backward briefly."

"Geologists consider the New Madrid fault line a major seismic zone and predict that an earthquake roughly the magnitude of the Haiti earthquake (7.0 on the Richter scale) could occur in the area during the next 50 years."


“All the faults are active,” says Haydar Al-Shukri, director of Arkansas Earthquake Center. “We would see an earthquake 10 times larger than the Haitian earthquake or even those in California because of the amount of distance the seismic waves of the earthquake would travel."

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WAR RUMORS


"Israel's looming war in Gaza: Can Obama stop it before it starts"

Quotes:

"Next week, or the week after, Barack Obama may well see intelligence reports of tank battalions moving south and west along Israeli highways, and whole infantry brigades setting up camp in the western Negev."

"The countdown to the Second Gaza War has begun in earnest. Date it, if you like, to Sunday, and a coolly terrifying analysis by Yom Tov Samia, former overall Israeli military commander of the Gaza Strip and the adjacent Negev."


There are also rumors of war coming from the northern border:


"Hezbollah and Syria on alert fearing IDF attack on Lebanon"

Quotes:


"Syria and Hezbollah have gone on alert anticipating an Israeli attack on Lebanon, the London-based A-Sharq al-Awsat daily reported on Friday."

"According to the report, Hezbollah has been monitoring with caution the reinforcement of Israel Defense Forces troops along the Lebanon border."


As stated so many times before - the region is just on the brink of war.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

In the news...

First, of course we see the earthquakes continuing over the last 24 hours in the Caribbean and South America, with a 4.8 near Chile, a 5.7 off the coast in the Pacific, another 4.0 in Haiti, 4.5 just off the coast in Central America, a 5.3 in the Drake passage, and we also see Japan getting a 4.8 and several others in that region MAP.

In other news:


Iran Unveils New Satellites. In this article we see that Iran has already launched one such satellite, which, according to the article:

"The launch sent alarm bells ringing in the international community, which voiced concern over Iran's development of technology that could be used for military purposes.
The West suspects Iran of secretly trying to build an atomic bomb and fears the technology used to launch space rockets could be diverted into developing long-range ballistic missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads."

Also in the news:

"New Israeli Demand Complicates US Peace Mission"


"Netanyahi says Israel will have to have presence in West Bank"

Quotes from these articles:


"Washington's Middle East envoy faces a new obstacle in his latest attempt to revive Israeli-Palestinian peace talks: Israel wants to maintain troops on the West Bank's border with Jordan even if a deal is reached."

"Palestinians have rejected Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's demand, made just before U.S. envoy George Mitchell arrived in the region."

"Netanyahu said an Israeli presence on the eastern side of a "prospective" Palestinian state would be necessary to keep militants from launching rockets at Israel's heartland."

"On Thursday, Saeb Erekat, a confidant of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, called the demand "absolutely unacceptable."



Mr Netanyahu has obviously reached an obvious conclusion - Israel must have a presence in the West Bank or their viability as a country would be at risk. This is painfully obvious. However, this is also an enormous roadblock to the peace process in and around Israel. A deal-breaker for the Palestinians.

It just once again underscores what the Bible tells us. There won't be a peace deal until the antichrist confirms it. Period.

The question for prophecy watchers is - what events will ultimately lead to, a) the rise of the antichrist, b) the peace agreement in the Middle East, c) the acceptance of a peace deal by Palestinians and Israeli.

Whatever happens must be big enough to shake the foundations of the current mindset by both Israel and the surrounding groups. This is why many prophecy scholars believe Ezekiel 38-39 and/or Isaiah 17 will occur first - which would lead to having the surrounding terrorists groups severely weakened. It would also serve as a tremendous opportunity for a "leader" to emerge from the aftermath of this carnage and "confirm" the peace deal.

There could be other scenarios in play - scenarios which haven't even been considered thus far - other scenarios which lead to the biblical fulfillment which will lead to the antichrist taking his leadership position.

But it will take something quite LARGE in the region to break this never ending stalemate. Perhaps something of "biblical proportions". We shall see.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Another Quake Hits Haiti

"New 6.1-quake hits Haiti, people flee into the streets"

In one of the worst natural disasters in recent history, with an estimated 200,000 people dead in Haiti with another 1.5 million rendered homeless - this series of earthquakes in the region are showing no signs of slowing down.

Also in the region just this morning:

4.9 Mexico
5.8 Cuba region (opps, just realized this one was a carry over from yesterday)

And further south:

5.2 Argentina
4.4 Argentina

There was also a 4.5 quake in Iran this morning. Already we see five large earthquakes as I type this and its not yet 8:00 am on the east coast of America. I have to wonder what else will happen during the remainder of this day.

I'm no expert on earthquakes by any means, but the trend is undeniable, especially in the Caribbean region and Central and South America where the recent cluster has been observed.

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Several more general ideas come to mind this morning.

FIrst - I find it interesting (again) that our generation is the first generation in history that can effectively track the signs that we have been given to watch. Because of instant world-wide news availability, anyone with interest can track the various signs. In 1890, for instance, we would have no awareness of these earthquakes or the subsequent famine and disease which inevitably hits the regions. Same for the other signs, whether warfare, rumors of war, the rise of the EU, pestilences, etc etc etc.

This even includes the capability of the entire world to witness the deaths and resurrection of the two witnesses as seen in Revelation 11. This would have been impossible in any previous generation,.

Second - although prophecy watchers have been following the earthquake story for decades, as a result of the epic earthquake which caused "The Tsunami" a few years ago, instantly killing a similar number to the quake in Haiti, earthquakes have been very much in the public eye.

Third - these recent signs should serve as a "wake-up" call for an unbelieving world. Perhaps it will trigger an interest in biblical prophecy for some. Perhaps it will create an interest in prophecy for a skeptical Christian. As I mention in the book "Signs of the Coming Christ", immediately following 911, I received many calls and emails from folks who had previously scoffed at prophecy. Perhaps these obvious "signs" coming from earthquakes will do the same.

I can't help but think that the "birth pain" contractions are rapidly speeding up - and speeding up just as we watch the Middle-East on the brink of exploding and all of the other signs marching along towards the Tribulation.

It is time to be ready. More prayer. More time with God. More witnessing about the truth of Jesus. And more looking up.

Jesus will be coming for His Bride soon. The signs are abundant. I believe we are just on the brink of seeing John 14 fulfilled - that scripture that is completely consistent with the same message given in 1 Thessalonians 4:16 and 1 Corinthians 15:50-52:

"Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me.
In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you.
I am going there to prepare a place for you.
And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me
that you also may be where I am."
(John 14:1-3).

The ultimate goal. To be with Jesus in that special place that He has prepared for His Bride (New Jerusalem). We'll be there soon. We already have a vivid description of that place - given to us in Revelation 21 and 22. Just a tiny glimpse of what awaits us.

As we read in the last book of Revelation, just following the description of our "real" home, we see the following words which ring in my ears every day:

"He who testifies to these things says, 'Yes, I am coming soon.'"

"Amen, Come, Lord Jesus"

(Revelation 22:20)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Rumors of war

While the earthquake story continues to make the news, a couple of "war rumor" stories have appeared:

"Arming of Hezbollah Could Spark Israel-Syria War"

The Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Rai published a story Sunday in which a "US official" stated that if Syria supplies Hezbollah with surface-to-air missiles (SA-2), war will break out and Tel Aviv will directly strike Damascus.

Other quotes:

"In addition, the official said Syria trained Hezbollah members in Damascus on how to use the SA-2 missiles. Israel has previously warned the country not to supply Hezbollah with the missiles, according to the US source."

“Any possible military attack by Hezbollah against Israel will be met by a ‘harmful war’ on Lebanon. Israel made a mistake in 2006 by not striking Syria during the war with Lebanon, and any new attack from Hezbollah against it will not spare Damascus from a strike,” he added."

This isn't the first time that Israel has discussed how they would respond to Syrian aggression. In 2009 Israel made it clear that if Syria used chemical tipped missiles against Israel, then they would respond as if they had been attacked by nuclear weapons.

Even more interesting is the fact that other reports have stated that Syria is already in the process of transporting these weapons into southern Lebanon.

As we all know, Isaiah 17 informs us that Damascus is destined for complete destruction in these latter days.

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In other war rumors we see the following:

"Iran says may hit Western warships if attacked"

Quotes:


"Iranian defense minister warns his country could strike back at war vessels deployed in Persian Gulf. 'The Westerners know well that existence of warships serves as best operational targets for Iran should they undertake military action,' Ahmad Vahidi says."

"Ahmad Vahidi said there were now more than 90 war vessels in the Gulf - a waterway crucial for global oil supplies - and that they had created a "military environment" there."

"They included submarines, aircraft carriers and destroyers, he said during a conference in Tehran on the Gulf."

"Last month, Vahidi said Iran would strike back at Israeli weapons manufacturing sites and nuclear installations if the Jewish state attacked the Islamic Republic's nuclear facilities."


Sooner or later war is going to break out, and when it does, I believe it will begin a non-stop sequence of continuous events leading to the Tribulation.

Monday, January 18, 2010

More Quakes

Not only is the earthquake story continuing, but we are seeing them in more and more diverse places - including the U.S.

4.0 Oklahoma
4.3 Oregon
5.5 Argentina
6.3 Drake Passage (southern tip of S. America)
4.5 Iran
4.9 Dodecanese Islands
5.8 Kuril Islands
5.6 Japan
5.3 Bali
5.3 Aleutian Islands
5.9 New Britain Region
6.5 Northern California
4.9 India


These are just a few noteworthy earthquakes over the last 2-3 days. There are many more. Oklahoma, Oregon, California, Iran, Argentina, South Pacific, Caribbean, India; you name a region and it seems as though an earthquake has occurred recently.

As mentioned, all of this is happening at a time when the other signs that we follow are in the news. Kind of like........birth pain contractions.


MAP


UPDATE: Monday Morning - 6.0 earthquake hits Guatemala.
link here.

Also updated Monday morning:

5.0 Greece
4.1 New Mexico

These updates have occurred over the course of Monday morning since the original was written (above).

Birth pains indeed.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

More on Haiti

When Jesus began His Olivet Discourse, or His discussion of the last days and the signs of "the generation", He stated that the beginnings of the generational signs (and the signs that would continue like birth pains) would be "wars and rumors of wars", "earthquakes", "pestilences" and "famine". Jesus also used the idiom "Nation against nation and kingdom against kingdom", which, as mentioned before in the context of Matthew 24 would serve as a reference to World War.

Also as mentioned many times in the past, many scholars find enormous spikes in these signs during the WWI and WWII eras. I believe that these were the first two big signs which started "the generation". Notably, Israel being formed as a nation in 1948, just on the heels of WWII, served as the "Super Sign", and many prophecy watchers focus on that sign (appropriately), but the WWI and WWII eras really marked the beginning the last generation in terms of "signs".

It has always fascinated me, how all of these signs are all interrelated. As we know historically, any war leads to people fleeing the war areas, with evacuations, impromptu encampments with poor conditions leading to dysentery and other communicable diseases (pestilence), famine (unable to get food to the people) and the combination of these "signs" always seem to go hand in hand.

Earthquakes have the same effect:

"Haiti's Health System Crumbles as Outbreaks Loom"

Now we see this inevitable situation already occurring in Haiti. Pertinent quotes below:

"The earthquake in Haiti crushed the country’s fragile infrastructure for health care and clean water and may trigger widespread outbreaks of life-threatening diarrhea, measles and malaria."

"Flourishing Diseases"

"Diarrheal diseases, including cholera and E. coli, cause severe dehydration and strip the body of needed nutrients. Diarrhea will flourish as survivors struggle to find clean water and safe food, Kirsch said. Children are most susceptible to severe infections."

"Measles outbreaks, which sometimes follow natural disasters, may flash through neighborhoods of tightly packed courtyards where thousands of homeless residents are gathering. Measles spreads rapidly and kills 15 percent of infected children in regions with malnutrition, Thomas Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said in an interview in December."

“The health system has been eliminated, water and sanitation entirely knocked out,” Kirsch said in an interview yesterday. “The chance of them recovering even to the low level that they were before is almost zero."

One reason these signs have continued to grow throughout this generation is the array of world-wide "regional conflicts" - from Bosnia/Serbia, to northern Africa, to Iraq, Afghanistan, "ethnic cleansing" in many regions, and the many Islamic regions who are in a constant state of war. In every one of these estimated 30+ regions of warfare we see the same thing that we are witnessing in Haiti - the spread of multiple diseases, famine and resulting starvation, poor nutrition and poor living conditions.

Haiti serves as a microcosm of the above - what we see in Haiti, with the world's spotlight on the region is no different that what happens every single day in these war-torn areas. Granted, Haiti is on a larger scale and gets the news coverage because of the sensational nature of a large earthquake, but this is happening every minute of every day elsewhere in the world.

These particular signs of the generation are all interrelated. Both earthquakes and warfare always lead to this subsequent scenario of pestilences and famine.

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Another story has emerged from the devastation in Haiti - and this too is something that seems to occur in these regions even though it isn't a "sign", it is uplifting and a glimpse of how God seems to show up in these disaster areas. It seems that there is inevitably a story like this one:

"Haitian doctor takes more than 100 patients into his home"

Below are quotes from this article:


"Haitian doctor takes more than 100 patients into his home
By Mike Melia, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS


PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti - It wasn't long after Tuesday's earthquake levelled nearly all of the houses next to Claude Surena's that neighbours started showing up at his doorstep.

For years, the 59-year old pediatrician had treated the sick at his two-story hillside home near the centre of the Haitian capital.

Suddenly, he was running a triage centre, treating more than 100 victims on his shaded, leafy patio with food and supplies salvaged from ruined homes.

His undamaged house provides at least a minimum level of comfort away from the devastation - even for the dying - while thousands of others in the city lie in the dirt under a merciless sun waiting for attention from a handful of doctors.

"I have to thank whoever brought me," said Steve Julien, who says the last thing he remembers before he blacked out was rescue workers calling his name as they dug through the rubble of his house.

When he woke up, he was lying on a mattress inside Surena's soothing oasis.

"It was a blessing from God my house is safe," he said. "We at least have been able to do something for everyone."

The patients show physical and emotional wounds from having their homes collapse on them. Julien, 48, is among the least severely injured, with only a few scrapes and a sore body. Others have compound fractures and festering wounds. Surena said at least 10 patients are in critical need of more substantial help.

The injured sing Christian hymns as they huddle close together beneath sheets strung up as tents, but the earthquake still haunts them. Aftershocks rattled the city as recently as Friday morning."

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At least there is a small silver lining to this cloud - I suspect that we'll see more of these kind of stories as things progress in Haiti.

I'm sure we are all praying for the people in Haiti. But we need to remember that this same scenario is occurring every single day, throughout the world - just on a smaller scale.

Someday, the earth will be perfect again - just as God originally intended. Once Jesus returns for his 1,000 year reign on earth (Revelation 20, and a vast vast array of Old Testament prophecy), the earth, as originally intended will be completely restored.

But until then - what we are seeing in Haiti is only going to get worse on a world-wide scale. All of these "signs" will be escalated dramatically during the Tribulation. Wars will escalate in frequency and severity and just in the first series of wars - with the inevitable disease, famine and death, 1/4 of the earth's population will perish. The earthquakes will continue in frequency and severity, as will the resulting famine and disease. What we are seeing now is only a glimpse of the earth during the Tribulation. In fact, Jesus stated in Matthew 24, that if not for His return, "no one would survive".

Everything we are seeing today consists of warning signs for the generation. A warning of what is to come.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Earthquake Signs

5.6 Venezuela
7.0 Haiti (not to add the multiple aftershocks)
5.3 Kuril Islands
5.3 Kyukyu Islands
5.4 Kermadec Islands
5.2 West Chile Rise
4.4 California
4.0 Oklahoma
6.0 Mariana Islands
5.3 Santa Cruz Island
5.3 Philippines
4.9 Aleutian Islands
4.8 Kamchatka
4.9 Andreanof Islands
4.6 Fiji Islands


Seismic Monitor


The above list covers the last two days of significant earthquakes around the world.
Granted, all we are hearing about is the devastation in Haiti (appropriately) and its subsequent carnage, but there is an upward trend in world earthquakes. Additionally, there has been a recent, concerning trend in the California/Nevada region, with approximately 1063 smaller quakes measured over the last week alone (link here).

Jesus said that this last generation would notice earthquakes as a sign - something noteworthy - something getting people's attention. The story in Haiti, resulting from this earthquake will go down in history as one of the most devastating natural catastrophes in history. The number of deaths is now measured in the hundreds of thousands and the resulting carnage is just beginning. Infectious disease, violence, and further aftershocks will contribute.

And of course, the other and highly related sign - famine - has already begun in the region as enough food cannot reach the needy. As in all disasters and during war, famine and pestilence quickly follow; the signs are often highly interrelated.

Recall that it was only a few years ago that an earthquake created a tsunami - causing similar carnage.

And all of this is happening at a time when all of the signs are surging in intensity and frequency:

Just as the revived Roman Empire continues its growth as seen with the developments in the Mediterranean Union.
Just as Swine Flu finally begins to recede from the headlines.
Just as tensions in the Middle East are reaching a pinnacle.
Just as Iran and Russia consolidate their alliance.
Just as we hear about several new "super infections" spreading, such as mutated forms of TB, Malaria and HIV/AIDS to name a few.
Just as the Mediterranean Union selects its leader and splits into a ten nation leadership.
Just as the revived Roman Empire consolidates under their new constitution, the Lisbon Treaty.
Just as the G20, the G7, the UN and other world leaders call for the global financial system and currency.
Just as the rumors of war breaking out in the Middle East - including the possible use of WMDs continue to mount.

The signs are all around us - not just a few, but all of them. All of the signs that we have been given to watch and observe are increasing - exactly as Jesus warned: like birth pains. The earthquake in Haiti just puts an exclamation point on the obvious. The time that Jesus spoke of is rapidly approaching. I repeat - rapidly approaching. Its undeniable.

In the context of the above signs, Jesus made two very simple statements. But typical for Jesus' teachings, these brief statements contain a powerful message.

"When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift your heads, because your redemption is drawing near." (Luke 21:28).
"Even so, when you see these things happening, you know that the kingdom of God is near." (Luke 21:31).

Jesus speaks only in truth.
Anyone who understands basic logic can see the truth here:

Jesus gave us the signs, and the signs are ALL undeniably here.
Jesus also said when we see these signs, His return is near.

Therefore, Jesus' return is near. Its the only logical conclusion.

Keep looking up - just as instructed by Jesus - our redemption is drawing near!

Updates and news

First, an update by Joel Rosenberg regarding the earthquakes and Israel:

Link Here.


There are also two very well written commentaries coming from Jerusalem:

The first:

"The dangerous illusion of the 'peace process'". The title speaks for itself. Below are just a couple of quotes from this commentary:

"Nevertheless, Israel's very agreement to return to the negotiating table with the PA signifies the government's acceptance of an absurd situation in which the PA simultaneously conducts a policy of war against Israel while proclaiming to the world its desire for peace."

"If negotiations recommence this month, it will not be long before Israel comes under renewed international pressure to make "confidence-building" gestures to the Palestinians. Inevitably, these will include the relaxation of the stringent security measures in place in Judea and Samaria. It is therefore vital that the government make clear that there can be no return to the failed policies of the 1990s."

"The reality is that there is currently no partner for peace on the Palestinian side. There is nothing to be gained by finessing this fact, or by seeking to disguise it. Given this situation, all concessions to the PA will serve only to embolden the enemy and endanger Israelis. As the "peace process" road show gets ready to come back to town, responsible Israelis will be watching carefully to ensure that the tragic mistakes of the 1990s are not repeated."


The second commentary, with the title "Pro-Hamas media bias and Gaza activists", sheds light on the agenda of Hamas and their draconian actions in the region, all while receiving favorable media coverage. Quotes:

"Hamas opposes genuine peace with Israel, and used the most pernicious form of violence - suicide bombings - throughout the 1990s to destroy the peace process and prevent compromise. Its mission is not to achieve peace based on compromise, but to pursue the impossible dream - more a nightmare for everyday Palestinians - of destroying Israel and returning Palestine to what it was in 1917, before it came under British colonialism."

"THAT HAMAS desire is not only shared by the religious extremists who continue to grow, but by those who are secular fanatics yet also oppose peace based on compromise. Most of those activists are based in Western countries, where it is easy to chant for the destruction of not only Israel but of Abbas's secular Palestinian government which does support compromise based on two-states."

"These are strange bedfellows in the Palestinian extremist camps, religious fanatics shoulder-to-shoulder with secular extremists like the Popular Front and the rejectionists led by the activists and fawned on by the Arab media that mistakenly believe "freedom" means embracing the most extremist activists."

"The Arab media, which glorify religious extremism and even violent attacks, don't realize, of course, that under a Hamas-run government, it wouldn't just be Jews, Christians and secular Muslims who would be oppressed. The media in a Hamastan would be among the primary targets, stripped of the "freedoms" they enjoy today - of criticizing Abbas, two states and peace based on compromise."

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It seems strange that the main-stream-media and the local arab media supports such a radical, oppressive and violent group like Hamas. But these are strange times that we are living in.

As mentioned before, I believe almost everything we see today, particularly in the Middle East - is happening for one central reason: to prepare the world for the arrival of the antichrist and the Tribulation. Its that simple.

A quote the second article above is applicable to all prophecy in these last days:

"Gaza is a very complicated issue, but not that hard to really understand."

We could say the same about everything we see in the world today, as it applies to the last generation witnessing the signs around us:

"Complicated but not that hard to really understand". Its easy. The world is marching lockstep - like lambs marching towards a cliff. While the world moves towards the Tribulation, the vast majority of people have no idea whatsoever where things are headed. But we do. Its simple: Its all written God's word and it will all happen exactly as recorded.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Mediterranean Union Appoints Secretary General

We've talked about the Mediterranean Union many times in the past ("EU Expansion and the 10 Kings"), but there haven't been any recent news. Looking back, we know from public information as shown on the EU's main website - that the Mediterranean Union represents an outgrowth of the EU (Review of Mediterranean Union here: "The Mediterranean Union: Dividing the Middle East and North Africa").

The Union was formed in 2008 and incorporates 43 European, Middle Eastern and North African countries. This union includes all of the EU countries. There are two very interesting elements of the Mediterranean Union. One is the simple fact that the map of the Med Union looks almost idential to maps of the Roman Empire at its peak.

A second very interesting element coming from the Med Union is the fact that they have decided to divide the Union into a southern half and a northern half, with each having five countries serve as its leadership. 5+5=10. "5+5 forum". This was done in recognition of the vast cultural and religious differences in the region ("iron and clay...A mixture that will not remain united" Daniel 2:42-43).

Obviously, there are many prophecy scholars wondering if this leadership alignment could evolve into the 10 Kings as described in Revelation 17 and Daniel 2,7. It is tempting to at least recognize the "coincidence" of having such an expanded EU (revived Roman Empire) with a 10 country leadership division. At this point, who knows the exact meaning and how it will evolve, but at a minimum, it is worth watching closely.

With that as the backdrop - we now see that the Med Union has finally "appointed" their "General Secretary" (notice no election was held):


"The UPN meets to appoint a Jordanian as general secretary"

"Massadeh appointed secretary general of Mediterranean Union"


As we see in these articles, Ahmad Massadeh, the Jordanian ambassador to the EU, Belgium, Norway and Luxembourg, was appointed Secretary General of the Mediterranean Union on Tuesday.

As seen in these articles:


"Masadeh, born in Jordan in 1969, holds a PhD from King’s College London. He has several publications in the legal field. He boasts a vast commercial legal background being an attorney and a university professor specialised in international trade, investment and projects. He is also a member of the boards of major companies like Royal Jordanian, the Jordanian national carrier, as well as international institutions like the World Trade Law Association in London and the World Bank International Centre for Settlement of Disputes."

So finally, the Med Union has a leader.

This has to be a compelling story.

In summary, we have watched the EU expand into the Mediterranean Union. It now has a 10 member/country leadership which is divided into a southern and a northern half, with each half having 5 leadership countries. Daniel 2 not only points to the 10 Kings which will come out of the revived Roman Empire but details a split division shown by the left and right foot of the statue, each with 5 toes). Daniel 7 and Revelation 17 elaborate on these 10 Kings.

It is currently impossible to know if this leadership division within the EU/Med Union will evolve into the biblical 10 Kings. But anytime I see any form of leadership which consists of 10 ______ (countries? regions? individuals?) - then I am watching VERY closely. This is no exception.

Perhaps the most germane quote comes from this article,"Jordanian ambassador named Mediterranean Union Chief":

"The union brings together EU members with states from north Africa, the Balkans, the Arab world and Israel in a bid to foster cooperation in one of the world's most volatile regions."

We shall see.

Earthquakes back in the news

Although there have been several periods of increasing earthquakes over the past several months, I haven't covered the news as other things were going on, and the periods were brief.

Obviously quakes are back in the news - one might refer to them as "noteworthy", which was the essence of the signs given by Jesus in the Olivet Discourse.

"Major quake hits Haiti; many casualties expected".

"Quake slams Haiti; thousands feared dead".

From these articles we see that this 7.0 quake hit Haiti hard - very hard. Stated as the strongest earthquake in 200 years, many buildings collapsed including hospitals, the National Palace, UN Headquarters and there was extensive damage in Port-au-Prince. Like most natural disasters, more news will come out when power and communications begin to come back on line. The death toll is already estimated in the thousands.

This is, of course, in addition to the 6.5 earthquake which hit northern California just a few days ago:

"6.5 earthquake strikes off California coast".

These are just the regional quakes. Only a few days prior to the Northern California quake, we saw two consecutive quakes hit the Solomon Islands, measured as 7.2 and 6.5, respectively. These are not small earthquakes. A quick glance at the usual earthquake map reveals the world-wide activity:

Earthquake Map Here.

Just like all of the other signs, earthquakes are very much in the news. More signs = more warnings from God. He has given the world plenty of time to accept His plan for salvation through Christ Jesus. The signs have been present and increasing for an entire generation, and like birth pains, we are seeing the "contractions" occurring at an increasing rate.

I was watching Hal Lindsey's weekly show, and towards the end of the show he made a statement that I completely agree with. To paraphrase, he basically stated that we have been watching the signs for years now, and as amazing as they are - the most notable aspect today - is the rate at which the signs are progressing around us.

Thats it.

The speed at which world events are taking place now - from the revived Roman Empire (aka EU) and its progress, the Mediterranean Union formation and growth, Israel, Iran, Russia, world governance, world financial system, earthquakes, war and rumors of war, Gog-MaGog's alignments, terrorism, pestilences, famine, bioterrorism, spread of nuclear weapons, radical Islam, Israel surrounded by her enemies, Jerusalem as the focus of negotiations, China's rise to power, and on and on it goes. None of the signs are slowing down, in fact they are all accelerating.

Any day now, the prophecy from 1 Thessalonians will be fulfilled.

"For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command...the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet with the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these words." (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17)

And the apostle Paul also informed us that we wait. We wait for Jesus:

"...and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead - Jesus, WHO RESCUES US FROM THE COMING WRATH."
(emphasis mine). (1 Thessalonians 1:10).

Its a promise and its coming soon.

Maranatha!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

In the news...

"Netanyahu: Israel will never share Jerusalem with Palestinians". In this article, according to a "bureau statement", Netanyahu declared on Tuesday that "Israel would never cede control of united Jerusalem nor retreat to the 1967 borders."

This is a refreshing statement coming from an Israeli leader in this modern era of appeasement.

However, this comes at a time of escalating tensions in and around Israel. To underscore this increase in tensions, particularly around Gaza, we see the following:

"IDF denies that it attacked northern Gaza".

Quotes:

"Also Monday, a Qassam rocket fired by Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip struck the Western Negev, for the fifth consecutive day. There were no casualties or damages reported in the incident."

"Four mortar shells were also fired at Israel from Gaza on Sunday, but they exploded on the Palestinian side of the border."

"Addressing an increase of rocket fire into Israel from Gaza, Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Monday advised Gaza's Hamas rulers to "watch their step, and not to cry crocodile tears if they force [Israel] to take action."


Following a relatively long period of quiet along the Gaza border, we have now seen several weeks of escalating mortar shells from Gaza into Israel. We also see Israel preparing its response, as Netanyahu vowed a "powerful response" to these increasing mortar attacks.

Then we see this article:

"IDF may take over Philadelphia in future conflict".

Here we read that Israel may take over the "Philadelphia Corridor", which is a strip of land in the southern Gaza Strip which contains weapons smuggling tunnels. According to this article:

"Plans for such an operation have been drawn up and would likely include the deployment of several units in the southern Gaza town of Rafah and along the 14-kilometer strip of land called the Philadelphia Corridor under which Hamas has dug several hundred tunnels that are used to smuggle weapons and explosives into the Strip."

and

"The IDF believes that since Cast Lead ended in mid-January 2009, Hamas has significantly boosted its military capabilities and has obtained long-range rockets, mostly from Iran. One of these rockets was recently tested by Hamas and has a range of more than 60 km., which means it could hit Tel Aviv."

"In addition, Hamas is believed to have obtained advanced, mostly Russian-made anti-tank missiles and shoulder-to-air missiles and is reportedly trying to get its hands on an anti-ship missile that would enable it to prevent the navy from attacking Gaza from the Mediterranean."

----------

It is looking more and more like Israel is preparing to go back into Gaza, using ground forces and "occupying" "Palestinian land" - something that is certain to inflame the Islamic radicals in the region. Additionally, if they remain in this "Philadelphia Corridor", this too will be viewed as "occupation" and will be used as a tool to ignite the surrounding terrorist groups, not to mention Egypt, who will also view such actions as intruding on their land. It seems a "no-win" scenario for Israel, but they want to stop the arms build-up and the constant barrage of threatening missiles.

This is just more proof that the only peace plan will be the one "confirmed" by the antichrist (at least prior to Christ's return).

This is also evidence that the Middle East is a powder-keg just waiting to explode. It really does seem that somehow God is keeping a lid on this explosion - awaiting the precise moment that such events will fit into His overall plans. The Middle East remains just on the brink of this powder keg's ignition - but once it "ignites" the course of history and remaining events will be unstoppable.

And it could begin at any moment.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Sarkozy calls for overhaul of "international monetary system"

Timing is everything. Just as soon as we observe the big push to get the satellites up and running for project Galileo (Project Galileo link), we now see French President Sarkozy continuing the push for an international monetary system.

According to Mr Sarkozy:

"He has said he wants to transform the international monetary system when France takes over the leadership of the G20 in 2011."

and

"The monetary disorder has become unacceptable,'' said Mr Sarkozy, who later this month is due to address the world economic forum in Davos."

"The world is multipolar, the monetary system must become multi-monetary,'' he said in an apparent call for other currencies to be promoted over the greenback."


This is more interesting, given that France takes over the leadership of the G20 in 2011. Additionally, Mr Sarkozy's statements were echoed and supported by Nobel Prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz who stated the following:

"A dollar-based system ... might have made sense in the 20th century but doesn't make sense in the 21th century."

The entire article can be found here.

This article reveals that the calls for an "international monetary system" will not go away, and reveals that Europe is quite serious about it. This article also underscores the fundamental weakness in the dollar, a decline which will only accelerate in the coming weeks and months - and that, in turn will further consolidate the opinion that we need to move to an international system such as a single currency. It also serves as an indicator of the overall weakness of the United States on the world economic stage.

I believe both things must happen as we approach the Tribulation: a significantly weakened U.S. and a global financial system. America simply is not a world power during the Tribulation. The speculation on why this is, ranges from the Rapture disproportionately affecting the U.S. and serving as the cause of the U.S. demise - to an economic collapse and resulting removal from the world stage. Perhaps the U.S. simply gets swallowed up into the growth of the revived Roman Empire.

As seen with the other signs that we watch, the overall progress towards the Tribulation continues - here, we see serious discussions and calls by world's leaders to create a single world financial system, possibly including a single currency - just as we would expect from understanding biblical prophecy.

Its just a matter of time.






Saturday, January 9, 2010

Persecution

Usually when we think of persecution, we think of our brothers and sisters being imprisoned in foreign lands such as China, Pakistan, Syria, etc. We think of churches being burned, leaders put to death and "home invasions" in search of bibles, evidence of bible-studies or any other "evidence" which can be used against Christians.

In America and other "industrialized" countries persecution takes another form. We see it every day - and unfortunately we accept such forms of persecution without giving it much thought.

The commentary below is interesting and thought-provoking. It contemplates the recent situation that news journalist Brit Hume is involved in because he DARED to mention salvation through Christ Jesus. This commentary is worth repeating in its entirety and it is found on Mike Mickey's site (link here).




The Crucifixion of Brit Hume

By J. Matt Barber

During the Roman Empire’s secularist era those who acknowledged the deity of Christ were frequently fed to the lions to entertain – for lack of a better word – the “progressive” elites of the day. There’s little doubt that if many of today’s secular-“progressives” (more accurately: “moonbat liberals”) had their way, Caesar Obama would call out the lions once again.

Nothing makes the left lose its collective noodle like an open proclamation of Christian faith. You don’t see it when Muslims proselytize in government schools; the ACLU doesn’t sue when Wiccans share their witchy ways; militant “gay” activists don’t picket Buddhist temples with bullhorns while inhabitants grasp at Zen. No, there’s something about Christianity that just drives ‘em nuts. Always has. Always will.

Case in point: Recently, on two separate occasions, Fox News veteran Brit Hume both publicly pronounced his own faith in Jesus Christ and boldly suggested that Tiger Woods might find “forgiveness and redemption” for his serial philandering should he “turn to the Christian faith.”

Hume first offered Tiger the advice on “Fox News Sunday” and then reiterated his sage, though decidedly non-PC counsel on “The O’Reilly Factor” the following night. When asked by host Bill O’Reilly what kind of response he’d received for his comments, Hume replied, in part: “It’s always been a puzzling thing to me. The Bible even speaks of it. You speak the name Jesus Christ… and all hell breaks loose.”

Yes indeed.

After Hume made his comments, and as if on cue (Lord forgive them for not knowing what they do or why they do it), liberals went apoplectic. Here’s a small sampling:

As reported by CNSNews.com: “Tom Shales, media critic for the Washington Post , in a Tuesday column, demanded that Hume apologize and called his Christian remarks ‘even only a few days into January, as one of the most ridiculous of the year.’”

MSNBC’s reliably raspy Keith Olbermann accused Hume of attempting “to threaten Tiger Woods into converting to Christianity” and demanded that his Fox News ratings superior “keep religious advocacy out of public life” (back in the closet, Brit old boy).

Olblubberman then compared Hume to a terrorist, suggesting that “the worst example” of this kind of “proselytizing” are “jihadists.” Finally, he betrayed the left’s typical anti-Christian bigotry, suggesting that Jesus may have been a homosexual and wondering aloud: “WWJDIHS: What would Jesus do if he’s straight?”

While the mainstream media’s rage was clumsily managed (or masked), unbridled hate boiled over in the left-wing blogosphere.

On the sexual anarchist site, “JoeMyGod,” poster “QScribe” suggested that Brit Hume’s deceased son had been “gay” and viciously accused Hume of being responsible for the young man’s suicide: “Brit Hume still hasn't ‘repented’ for trashing his gay son and driving him to suicide. When I want moral guidance from a pig like that, I'll be sure to ask. Until then, he really ought to STFU.” (Hume has publicly shared that his son’s heartbreaking suicide played a large role in his acceptance of Christ.)

The next commenter went so far as to cruelly imply that Hume had sexually molested his own child and further mocked the tragic suicide, writing: “Dead victims don't tell on their molesters.”

Commenting on the Huffington Post, “Kandaher” bypassed Hume altogether and aimed his vitriol directly at his Creator: “anyone (sic) watched ‘The passion of Christ’? I thoruhgly (sic) enjoyed it. Nothing like watching this bloke getting beaten up! He deserved what he got and more!”

You get the idea.

Now, in the interest of full disclosure, I must confess that I very much enjoy watching liberals go goofy when the light of truth pierces that shadowy void called moral relativism. When the left’s religion of choice – secular-humanism – is challenged through exposure to the gospel message, they almost universally and instinctively react with such visceral, knee-jerk spasms. You can set your clock to it.

But believe it or not, there’s actually something rather delightful about such hateful lashing about. These poor souls – to be pitied and prayed for – fail to realize that, manifest within their own unwittingly bizarre behavior, is certain affirmation of the very words of Christ on the subject.

Jesus addressed this peculiar and deeply spiritual phenomenon on more than one occasion over two thousand years ago. In John 15:18-20 (NIV), for instance, He reminds His followers: “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.”

Now, I’m real sorry that most “progressives” and other non-believers feel that Christianity is deficiently “tolerant” or “inclusive” of various man-made religions and lifestyle choices. But it’s just not our call. Christ Himself reveals over and again that the pathway to heaven is a very narrow one, requiring membership in a rather “exclusive” club – a club wherein belief in Him and repentance from sin are the only membership requirements.

Christ said: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6). Note that, rather conspicuously, He did not say: “…No one comes to the Father except through me, the Buddha, Muhammad, Ganesh, and – on Tuesdays – L. Ron Hubbard.”

But lest you have any doubt, consider John 3:36, which warns every man, woman and child on earth – past, present and future: “Whoever believes in the Son [Jesus] has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him.”

So, Brit Hume had it right, didn’t he? I mean, it is kind of an all or nothing proposition, isn’t it?

As my favorite author and Christian apologist C.S. Lewis famously pointed out in his blockbuster book “Mere Christianity,” Christ could only have been one of three things: A lunatic, a liar, or – as Jesus oft claimed and as billions have believed – the sovereign Lord and Creator of the universe.

Noted Lewis:

“A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic – on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg – or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God; or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to. – C.S. Lewis

So, what does this all mean? Well, and please take this in the spirit (little ‘s’) intended: Brit Hume’s woolly, wily, wandering critics really ought to just un-knot their knickers; mudra, mantra or something; and seriously reflect upon the man’s words and heart.

Perhaps they should – being all “tolerant,” “diverse” and whatnot – consider, if only for a moment, the very Spirit (big ‘S’) from which came those words and was formed that heart.

In the meantime, to Mr. Hume: “Well done good and faithful servant.”

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Matt Barber is an attorney concentrating in constitutional law. He is author of the book “The Right Hook – From the Ring to the Culture War” and serves as Director of Cultural Affairs with Liberty Counsel.

Friday, January 8, 2010

The EU's Galileo Project: Alive and Well

This is a story I have been following for several years - under the category of "the mark of the beast":


"Galileo contracts give boost to delayed project"


The Galileo Project is the name of the EU's satellite "navigation system", and it is the European version of the United States' well-known GPS system. This project has been on and off for several years now, but it is now a full "go". The first satellite in this system was launched several years ago (2006 ?), and now all 30 satellites are planned to be launched before 2014.

Quotes from this article reveal the nature of this satellite system:

"With a combined value of over €1 billion, the contracts to build and launch the first wave of satellites will enable the roll-out of Galileo's services from 2014, said EU transport commissioner Antonio Tajani in Brussels."

"We can now focus on the actual roll-out and demonstrate to European citizens that Europe's own satellite navigation system is firmly underway."

"Galileo is the EU's answer to the US Global Positioning System (GPS), widely deployed in a broad range of navigational devices such as those used by drivers to find street direction."


"The EU has been keen to stress Galileo's role in complementing rather than competing with existing satellite navigation systems."

"We want Galileo to be an international system," said Mr Tajani, stressing its compatibility with the US's GPS and the ongoing discussions with other countries including Russia and China."

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In summary, the Galileo project is the brainchild of the EU. This project represents the development of a complete monitoring system which originally was feared to compete with the United States' GPS, but it now appears that the two systems will be "compatible".

In other words, the technology to implement the mark of the beast (under the assumption that the implantable chip will be used during the Tribulation to track, monitor and "allow" all financial transactions to take place). IF this is the case, then the satellites launched for this project would be a necessary component in order to fully implement the mark of the beast.
"Digital Angel chip now FDA approved for medical use".

According to the EU website, we can see the following quotes (Link Here):

"Galileo is Europe's initiative for a state-of-the-art global satellite navigation system, providing a highly accurate, guaranteed global positioning service under civilian control. While providing autonomous navigation and positioning services, Galileo will at the same time be interoperable with GPS and GLONASS, the two other global satellite navigation systems. The fully deployed Galileo system will consist of 30 satellites and the associated ground infrastructure."

Previous articles on this topic have revealed much information on this system and the implantable microchip as developed as Digital Angel/VeriChip. This small chip, the size of a grain of rice, can be inserted under the skin in the hand or forehead (the preferred locations according to Digital Angel) and it can contain all health and financial information for individuals.

Will this system definitely end up being the infamous mark of the beast? Obviously no one knows this answer, one way or the other. Some of my colleagues have suggested that during the Tribulation, resulting from the massive destruction, such technology will be rendered useless. Some folks passionately believe that this technology fits perfectly with what we know about the mark of the beast, as described in Revelation 13:16-18.

Regardless, this is definitely worth watching. I believe there is a very reasonable chance that this does indeed represent the future "mark", as it would represent a method of monitoring individuals for security (airport security comes to mind), and to significantly thwart crime (all financial transactions could be handled via this implantable chip, as it could easily contain someone's financial information) and "identity theft". It may represent the next step (after credit cards, debit cards etc.) in creating a "cashless society".

If you are doing the math - and this project is slated for completion in 2014, keep in mind that the mark of the beast will be implemented at the mid-point of the Tribulation, at the time of the antichrist's announcing himself as God from the Temple. Taking "The Mark" will not only be the only way to complete ANY financial transaction (any buying and selling transaction) but it will also serve as the indicator that the individual has now (and permanently) pledged his/her allegiance to the antichrist.

We shall see - but this is a highly significant development coming from the revived Roman Empire. If indeed, Digital Angel's technology is ultimately the fulfillment of Revelation 13:16-18, and a representation of the "mark of the beast", then this satellite system will be the last remaining step in its implementation.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

In the news...

There are several interesting stories in the news today:

1. Persecution:

"Gunmen kill 7 outside Egyptian church at Christmas"

2. More missiles fired into Israel:

"10 mortar shells fired from Gaza"

3. Continual push for "1967 borders" as part of "peace deal". It appears that the international community is actually considering the unilateral (Israel not involved) mandate to force Israel back to the so-called "pre-1967 borders". This seems to be the main reason that Abbas is stalling: He seems to believe that such a mandate will be implemented:

"Candidly Speaking: Obama and Israel: difficult days ahead". Interesting quotes from this article in the Jerusalem Post:


"In fact, new pressures are looming. European hostility is exemplified by the new EU representative for foreign affairs, Catherine Ashton, who in her maiden speech bitterly criticized the "Israeli occupation," described the temporary freeze as merely "the first step," referred to east Jerusalem as occupied territory, called for a lifting of the blockade of Gaza and expressed renewed opposition to the security fence. Her speech contained no condemnations of Hamas or calls on the Palestinians to cease their incitement. The Europeans are clearly maneuvering to force Israel to return to 1967 borders and negotiate directly with Hamas."


"CURRENTLY, ABBAS appears intent on doing nothing, relying on the international community to continue beating up Israel and extracting unilateral concessions. He even proclaimed that he would not resume negotiations until the international community affirmed that the Palestinian state would adhere to the 1967 borders."



"WE SHOULD have no illusions. The situation is grave. Tough days lie ahead, and we are probably more isolated today than at any time since the birth of the state. Netanyahu has offered the Palestinians an independent demilitarized state and a settlement freeze - far more than Yitzhak Rabin was willing to concede. Yet he is rebuffed by the Palestinians and accused of being intransigent by the global community, while the Americans, at best, sit on the sidelines. In fact, Obama went so far as to relate to the neighborhood of Gilo in Jewish Jerusalem as an area of contention, complaining that construction in the area "embitters the Palestinians in a way that could end up being very dangerous."

"We must prepare ourselves."

In a related article, we see a renewed effort by the U.S.:

"US readies new push on Middle East process". Again we see the push for "pre-1967 borders". Quotes from this article:


"In a flurry of meetings in Washington and in European capitals this week and next, senior administration officials will explore new approaches to bringing the two sides together."


"The letters are likely to contain gestures to both sides. For the Palestinians, that would include criticism of settlements and the belief that the borders that existed before the 1967 Arab-Israeli War be the basis of a future peace deal. For the Israelis, they would acknowledge that post-1967 demographic changes on the ground must be taken into account, meaning that Israel would be able to keep some settlements."

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The push for peace in the Middle East is more intense now than I can ever recall. Appropriately described above as a "flurry of meetings", we watch the international community attempt to force Israel into accepting conditions that would essentially place Israel in a defenseless position against attack.

I can't help but think the stage is almost perfectly set for a strong figure to arise - a figure who has the charisma and clout to finalize a peace deal. The current players are obviously unable to finalize anything, but they have put the process and the framework in place.

So we see two looming events which we know will inevitably take place, and the question becomes what will come first?

We know that Ezekiel 38-39 (aka "Gog-MaGog) will take place - that massive invasion of Israel which God will directly intervene and end Himself. And we have the peace plan - which will be finalized or "confirmed" by the antichrist.

Which comes first?

The peace plan, which could set the stage for the invasion of Israel (as we know this invasion will occur in an unsuspecting Israeli population - living in perceived peace: a potential set-up for the invasion).

OR

The Gog-MaGog invasion takes place first, and this presents an opportunity for the antichrist to arrive on the scene, and confirm his peace deal in the aftermath of this massive invasion.

It is impossible to know at this point, but either scenario seems to be looming - just waiting for the precise moment to occur.

I believe the world will have the answer soon enough. I also believe that the Church will have already left the earth for far far better things prior to either scenario. We shall see!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Report from Epicenter:

Joel Rosenberg has a nice update from Israel, and everything points to war. In his brief review,
"Israel steps up war preparations" (link here), we see the following report:


REPORT FROM EPICENTER: ISRAEL STEPS UP WAR PREPARATIONS

Greetings from Israel. I’m here for a time of prayer and planning with some of our Joshua Fund team. Three big stories in the news since I’ve hit the ground, all involving preparations for a possible massive war between Israel, Iran and her Radical Islamic allies:

ISRAEL TO SIMULATE BIOLOGICAL WARFARE ATTACK: “An exercise simulating a response to a biological warfare attack will be carried out in the Dan region next week. The exercise, which will be the largest of its kind in Israel’s history, will be carried out in Tel Aviv, Ramat Gan, and Holon and aims to evaluate the ability of the Home Front, the medical services, rescue teams and the municipal authorities to respond in the conditions created by a biological catastrophe caused either by terrorists or by accident. The exercise, code named Orange Flame, will be held on Wednesday and Thursday next week, and rescue units of the Home Front Command and special detection units of the Health Ministry, will be tasked to locate the biological hazard and deal with hundreds of citizens who were hypothetically exposed to the substance.”


IDF TO BLANKET ISRAEL WITH GAS MASKS — “The Home Front Command is planning to begin distribution of individual protection kits, i.e. gas masks, to every citizen starting in late February, according to a cabinet decision taken last week. Originally, just over 60 percent of the population were to receive kits, but a decision to extend that protection to the whole country means the production of the necessary equipment has been stepped-up, and another billion shekels is needed to fund to the endeavor. The plan is to distribute protective kits to each of the nearly eight million citizens (in line with a population estimate for 2013), over a period of three years.”


Tehran Plans a Major Military Exercise: Drill to Boost ‘Defensive Capabilities’ Coincides With Deadline Iran Has Set for West on Nuclear Offer – “Iranian media on Sunday reported Tehran will conduct a large-scale defensive military exercise next month, coinciding with what government officials now say is a deadline for the West to respond to its counteroffer to a nuclear-fuel deal."

As Jesus stated, "There will be wars and rumors of war". For the last several months, everything is pointing to an imminent war. In fact, I can't think of a better way to characterize Israel and the Middle East, over the past several decades, as "wars and rumors of wars" would be the most accurate and succinct way to describe the region.

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In another related commentary, "Party on, world", a very sobering review is presented - regarding Israel's situation in the current world. However, as this commentary continues, it focuses on God's ultimate protection of Israel and the scriptures supporting this view from Isaiah. A worthwhile read.

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It is always worth remembering that despite the tensions, despite the rumors of Israel's demise, despite the rumors of an invasion into Israel and all of the threats against this tiny nation - God is in control and God is watching over Israel. Her enemies will be destroyed.

That fact is worth remembering at all times.