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Scoffers Abound – By Jan Markell

 

Excuse me while I rant. I think Bible prophecy gets a bad rap. I think that those of us who long for Jesus’ return are marginalized in the church today. I even think there is a war on Bible prophecy starting in our seminaries. The carnage is played out in our churches that across-the-board stay away from the subject. The fact that the King is coming is seen as bad news to many because the event is shrouded in the world’s bad news.

But my perplexity goes beyond this. As a ministry, we have asked ourselves just how we can get the under age 45 crowd out to our events. Todd Strandberg of Rapture Ready writes about this as well. He says, “Every time I go to a prophecy conference, I can’t help but notice the sea of gray hair in the main meeting room. A few years back, at a conference in South Carolina, there wasn’t a single person under age 50 — and we had over 500 people in attendance.”

Strandberg concludes, “I’m very concerned about the state of leadership in the field of prophecy. I’m 47, and I am a spring chicken when compared to the ages of my peers.”

So I threw the dilemma out to my radio listeners this past weekend. I asked that if they were of the “younger generation,” and loved the topic of eschatology (end-times), would you please send me a note? I cannot say that I am inundated! I’ve had less than a dozen replies thus far. Here are a few examples.

Nick is 27 and writes, “I’m very concerned with the young generation. We are moving into the ‘end times’ at such a rapid rate and this young generation is in a coma.” Those are his words, not mine! I am certain that not every young person is in that condition.

Mike is 34 and writes, “You asked on your program today for young people to let you know if end-time prophecy is an issue. End-time prophecy is not AN issue, it is THE issue. You can look at it as I do as the blessed hope or you can look at it as frightening.”  

Ashley writes, “I am completely enthralled about learning about end times and how events in our world are carrying us closer to the return of our King. It thrills me!! Most of my (young) friends know nothing about it and have little desire to learn. They say it scares them. Personally though, I am filled with hope that we could be caught up with Jesus and not have to taste death. I can’t wait to meet Jesus face to face!”

Russ, who is 32, writes, “It is surprising to me that there are so many people I have tried to talk to about prophecy who have brushed me off by saying that they consider it ‘doomsday talk.’ It is difficult to get anyone to even talk about it. Even my own family doesn’t want to hear about it and this includes all ages.”

Jenni writes, “I am 37 and want you to know that we ARE out here! I also thought I’d let you know that my 14 year old daughter is also just as interested in both the Rapture and end-time prophecy, and has become quite a missionary for Christ! One of our other favorite sites is Rapture Ready. Thanks for having Terry James on.”

Leah made my day by writing, “I see a real remnant among the church here in our military community who are actively searching Bible prophecy and discussing end-time things. We belong to a Bible study and I have personally had many conversations with some of the 30+ folks that attend, mostly the other young moms, and am surprised at how many of us really are feeling the urgency in the air. Many of us have taken our kids out of public school and are homeschooling in order to get our kids grounded in God’s Word so that they can take a stand in their faith, whatever comes. Your broadcast has helped us to ask important questions about our times and what our stance should be. THANK YOU! Take heart, the next generation does, indeed, have a remnant that is awake, listening and watching for Christ’s return. God Bless!”

These few replies out of a potential audience of millions, tells me there is a problem. I am told that younger people want to “live out their life.” This world is not our home and I thought we didn’t WANT it to be our home. This is the home of the Antichrist and everything evil. If I am off base here, I am hoping folks will tell me so!  

Another e-mail emphasizes how terrified young mothers are concerning our times. They simply interpret all current/prophetic events as doom and gloom. Their world and their families must not be touched. See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil. A sanitized world!  

Then there are the mockers. Grant writes to me saying,

“An early 30’s pastor friend of mine I brought to your conference 2 years ago openly scoffed at what was said and argued against a lot of it when I tried to show him the realities of what is happening in this world today. I don’t have a lot of people to discuss these topics with.”

Eschatology spells out the devil’s demise and thus he is putting up a war against it. So the world asks — and scoffs, “Where is the promise of His coming?” just as the Bible predicted in II Peter 3:4. Don’t bother me with this info. Don’t depress me with it. Don’t enlighten me with it. Don’t bore me with it!

God has asked us to be His ambassadors in this depraved world. He asks us to stand for truth; to be light in the dark; to be salt in a world that is decaying. He asks us to distribute hope.

When you review all the road signs of the Olivet Discourse, Jesus was giving us some warnings, not to scare us, but to prepare us. A loving God keeps us informed on the days prior to the era of Antichrist. The warning is not to give in or to give up, but to endure.

Whether anybody gets excited about it or not, Jesus is coming again and soon. Whether those who are excited about that are young, middle age, or old, is irrelevant. His coming will be right on time. Then the final days will play out exactly as the Bible outlines. It’s a sure thing that those days will be frightful.

Let’s prepare ourselves for perilous times. We’re in them. The signs of the times are screaming at us! As a headline reads that I posted to our Web site headlines early today, “The Rapidity With Which the World Is Descending Into Chaos Is Amazing.”  

That is why God’s end-time promises are so important and why it is tragic that they are now marginalized.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=4958

Magog connection to Boston Marathon bombers/Chechnyan region

bombers/Chechnyan region

Baghdad. Karachi. Lebanon. Damascus. These are the places on maps our eyes rove to when thinking of terror, jihad, and evil. We see a great amount of hate emanating from these places where satan has his throne. (Revelation 2:13; Ezekiel 28:12).

And just when we got used to this place or that place being the seat of terror, BLAM! Chechnya!

The two brothers who executed the terrorist bombings at the Boston marathon were from Chechnya. They were Muslim and subscribed to a jihadi point of view. The Boston police Commissioner said, “We believe this man to be a terrorist,” said Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis. “We believe this to be a man who’s come here to kill people.”

Aha. This explains a lot. It is part of ground zero of where the Gog Magog nations will combine to attack Israel in the Gog Magog Ezekiel 38 war.

Russia’s Caucasus: breeding ground for terror

“Militants from Chechnya and other restive regions in Russia’s volatile North Caucasus have targeted Moscow and other areas with bombings and hostage-takings, but the allegations of involvement in the Boston Marathon explosions would mark the first time they had conducted a terror attack in the West. The conflict in Chechnya began in 1994 as a separatist war, but quickly morphed into an Islamic insurgency whose adepts vow to carve out an independent Islamic state in the Caucasus.”

“The word of the Lord came to me; Son of man, set your face against Gog, of the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal; prophesy against him and say: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I am against you, O Gog, chief prince of Meshech and Tubal. I will turn you around, put hooks in your jaws and bring you out with your whole army – your horsemen fully armed, and a great horde with large and small shields, all of them brandishing their swords. Persia, Cush and Put will be with them, all with shields and helmets, also Gomer with all its troops, and Beth Togarmah from the far north with all its troops – the many nations with you.’ (Ezekiel 38:1-6).

These Magog coalition nations are the nations of today –

Magog – there are over 130 historical references tying Magog to the ancient Scythians. In Colossians 3:11 Paul mentioned the Scythians. The Strong’s concordance identifies a Scythian as an inhabitant of Scythia or modern day Russia. The Great Wall of China was known as the “Ramparts of Magog” in ancient times and was built to protect China from Magog. Magog was a son of Japeth and inhabited central Asia. His children, the Scythians, are the ancestors of today’s Russian people.

Meshech and Tubal – These two were brothers of Magog and are linked to the same general area, but more likely with the Turkic people. Josephus associated Meshech with Cappodocia, home of the ancient Hittite Empire in Eastern Turkey.

Persia – Iran

Cush and Put – Ethiopia, Libya and the north part of the continent; Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Mauritania, etc.

Gomer– Eastern Europe of today.

Beth Togarmah – Armenians of today call themselves the House of Togarmah. The Turks (but not the Kurds, who are the ancient Medes of Media-Persia fame) are also included, and they’re the ones Ezekiel had in view.

Sheba and Dedan – commentaries none-the-less identify these two as probably representing the nations of the Arabian Peninsula, notably Saudi Arabia. The ancient capital of Saudi Arabia is still called Dedan on many maps today.

Tarshish

Tarshish was a son of Javan, who settled the area of Southern Greece. There are three schools of thought where Tarshish is concerned. One view locates Tarshish to the East, accessible from Solomon’s great seaport at Ezion Geber on the Red Sea. Since Javan and his family traveled north and west from Babel at the confusion of tongues, it seems unlikely. Large sea going vessels were often nicknamed “Ships of Tarshish” and more likely this is how Tarshish came to be linked with Ezion Geber, since both Solomon and Hezekiah built such vessels there. Others see this as a reference to ancient Tartessus, a seaport in southern Spain, near Gibraltar. Still others recall the sea going navies of the Phoenicians, who operated Ships of Tarshish out of nearby Cadiz and sailed as far north as England for tin, a metal used in the making of bronze and other alloys, which they mined in Cornwall. Some believe that the name Britannia is actually derived from a Phoenician word meaning “source of tin.” If so, since the ships of Tarshish brought tin to the ancient world, this reference could be to Great Britain making the “lions” (KJV) or “villages”(NIV) of Tarshish Great Britain’s colonies, of which the US is most prominent today. The fact that the lion is a symbol of the British Empire lends support to this view.

Now look at the map again. Chechnya is smack dab in the middle of the exact geographic region which will combine in an unholy alliance against God, striking His nation Israel in the last days.

One thing that the surprise Chechnyan connection and the surprise US terror act tells us, is that satan is alive and well and busy, even in ways and in places we are not aware. If there is a good to come of this act, it is to unite us in prayer, to take a stand for Jesus, and to remember to put on our armor and be on guard even more vigilantly- spiritually.

No matter how dark the day, the Light is coming. He will prevail. He already has prevailed. In this way, all things are working perfectly to work out His plan. In the glory of the lilies, Christ was born across the sea, with a glory in His bosom that transfigures you and me. His truth marches on! His day is coming!

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=4954

Boston bombers: FBI hunting 12-strong terrorist “sleeper cell” linked to brothers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev

Police believe the pair were specially trained to carry out the devastating attack

The FBI was last night hunting a 12-strong terrorist “sleeper cell” linked to the Boston marathon bomb brothers.

Police believe Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev were specially trained to carry out the devastating attack.

More than 1,000 FBI operatives were last night working to track down the cell and arrested a man and two women 60 miles from Boston in the hours before Dzhokhar’s dramatic capture after a bloody shootout on Friday.

A source close to the investigation said: “We have no doubt the brothers were not acting alone. The devices used to detonate the two bombs were highly sophisticated and not the kind of thing people learn from Google.

“They were too advanced. Someone gave the brothers the skills and it is now our job to find out just who they were. Agents think the sleeper cell has up to a dozen members and has been waiting several years for their day to come.”

A specialist team of CIA and FBI interrogators was yesterday flown to a Boston hospital to grill wounded Dzhokhar, 19, about the secret group. The University of Massachusetts student was caught on Friday after hiding out in a boat parked in a garden in locked down Watertown the day after a gun battle with police left his 26-year-old brother and a rookie cop dead.

Dzhokhar is said to have run his brother over as he escaped in a stolen car while Tamerlan lay handcuffed on the ground. They were carrying six bombs with them at the time, three of which ­exploded, as well as a handgun and rifle. The devices were thought to be pipe bombs.

Last night Dzhokhar – badly wounded but alive – lay handcuffed to his hospital bed under armed guard. The other three arrested in the port of New Bedford are also believed to be of college age.

Dzhokhar even went to a college party two days after the bombs wreaked havoc at the finish line. According to fellow students, he “looked relaxed” as he joined in a party at the campus on Wednesday night.

Hours later he was involved in the shootout which saw his brother killed.

Investigators have begun piecing together how the “well-mannered” brothers of Chechen origin were radicalised. Neighbours of the family said older brother Tamerlan had recently become obsessed with Islam. He mysteriously left the US in January last year to spend six months in Russia. Yesterday senior FBI counter-terrorism official Kevin Brock said: “It’s a key thread for investigators.”

It also emerged the Bureau interviewed Tamerlan two years ago, at the request of the Russian government, but could not establish that he had ties to terrorist radicals.

This was despite his worrying Russian-language YouTube page featuring links to extremist Islamic sites and others since taken down by YouTube.

One link showed an hour-long speech by an Islamic teacher called Shaykh Feiz Mohammed, while other videos are labled “Terrorists” and “Islam”.

The radical cleric, with links to extremist British Muslims, encouraged his followers to become martyrs for Islam. He said: “Teach them this: There is nothing more beloved to me than wanting to die as a mujahid.”

Yesterday the brothers’ mother Zubeidat, speaking from her home in Russia, added further intrigue to her sons’ murky past when she claimed the boys had been framed by the FBI over the two bombs last Monday that left three dead and 178 injured.

She claimed the FBI had been keeping watch on her eldest boy for up to five years. She said: “They knew what my son was doing. They knew what sites on the internet he was going to.

“They were telling me that he was really an extremist leader and that they were afraid of him. They told me whatever information he is getting, he gets from these extremist sites. They were controlling him.”

The bombers’ father Anzor wept at news that his youngest son had been captured alive. In a phone interview with a US news channel he told his

son: “Tell police everything. Everything. Just be honest.”

US Government officials have said the brothers were not under surveillance as possible militants. And an FBI statement said the matter was closed because interviews with Tamerlan and family members “did not find any terrorism activity, domestic or foreign”. But now they believe the pair, who emigrated to the United States from Dagestan about a decade ago, were part of a terror cell.

College dropout Tamerlan’s American wife Katherine Russell, 24, and their three-year-old daughter Zahara were yesterday thrown into the spotlight. She was a Christian before they married but converted to Islam. Her parents Warren, a doctor, and Judith were said to be “stunned” by their son-in-law’s involvement in the tragedy.

Judith and Warren issued a joint statement saying: “Our daughter has lost her husband today, the father of her child. In the aftermath of the Patriot’s Day horror, we know we never really knew Tamerlan Tsarnaev. Our hearts are sickened by the horror he has inflicted.”

Katherine, wearing a black hijab, was picked up by FBI agents at their home in Cambridge near Boston on Friday. Dope-smoker Dzhokhar was captured after a Watertown resident called police to say the fugitive was hiding in a boat in his back garden.

David Henneberry had gone into his garden for a cigarette after police lifted restrictions on people leaving their homes, believing the bomber had left the area. He noticed that the cover over his boat had blood on it and a strap had been cut. He went back into the house to get a stepladder and looked inside.

His stepson Robert said: “He stuck his head under the tarp and noticed a pool of blood and something crumpled up in a ball. Instead of being a hero of the moment and yelling at what we now know was the suspect, he did the right thing and called 911.”

Police immediately evacuated the family and surrounded the house, using a megaphone to tell Dzhokhar to come out with his hands up.

When he failed to respond they opened fire at the boat’s hull. Robert said: “They wound up ­shooting a couple of rounds through the boat. He wasn’t going to like that.”

Dzhokhar was wounded by the volley of gunfire and police were able to move in and arrest him. They later released infrared pictures taken from a helicopter showing Dzhokhar hiding in the boat.

Investigators will interrogate the bomber, still seriously ill last night, without reading him his rights – using special “public safety” powers.

The family of eight-year-old bombing victim Martin Richard welcomed the arrest of Tsarnaev. “Our community is once again safe from these men,” the family said in a statement.

Shortly before Dzhokhar’s capture, President Obama spoke by phone to Russian President Vladimir Putin. The White House said Obama “praised the close co-operation the US has received from Russia on counter-terrorism, including in the wake of the Boston attack”.

There were scenes of celebration across Boston as news spread of the capture of the remaining bomber.

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Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=4950

Wolves In Sheep’s Clothing

Dear brothers and sisters, not many of you should become teachers in the church, for we who teach will be judged more strictly.” (James 3:1 NLT)

They are classified as pastors, ministers, clergymen, priests, teachers, writers, authors, etc. If we hold a position of instructing others in spiritual matters, we need to take the above verse very seriously.

I am amazed in one hand and not so much in the other that there are so many wolves in the pulpits of America. Whether the pulpit is a podium or a keyboard, there are more than enough predators on the loose.

One reason I am not surprised is because the Scriptures tell us that in the latter days apostasy will be very prevalent, and I strongly believe we are in the last days of the Church age.

Only God knows the actual number or percentage of wolves behind the pulpits in America, but I’m sure there are many. I’ve heard too many of them. This is one reason, among others, that it is so very important that every Christian be more than merely acquainted with God’s Word. We need to know it as well as we know our own name.

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15)

The reason these wolves of Satan are so widely accepted is because of the ignorance of the masses. Many Christians, no less, are basically ignorant of God’s Word, the Bible. It never ceases to amaze me what comes from the minds and mouths of Christian people, and there is no excuse for it, but laziness.

The number of so-called clergymen who are coming out and endorsing same sex marriage, for example, is appalling. If there were ever a sin clearly defined in the Bible, this is certainly one of them. Homosexuality is a sin. Period. God says so, so don’t get mad at me. Repent and forsake it.

The liberal elite of spiritual affairs, and political also, for that matter, say we must compromise and get along with everybody. That is not what God’s Word says. From the mouth of Jesus we hear:

34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. 35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. 36 And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household. 37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.” (Matthew 10:34-37)

Is Jesus saying that Christians should go pick a fight with anyone who disagrees with them? Of course not. He is simply saying that the world will hate what He has to say and who He is. He is saying that if we are loyal to Him, we will be hated too.

18 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. 19 If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.” (John 15:18-19)

Jesus also said that to hate Him is to hate the Father.

He that hateth me hateth my Father also.” (John 15:23)

But I digress, a little. Far, far too many of these charlatans, wolves in sheep’s clothing, are seducing tens of thousands of people, if not millions, right into hell. I shudder to think of the judgment that will be administered to them when they stand before God.

It is very difficult to find a good Bible believing, Bible proclaiming man of God in our pulpits of the 21st century. Most are a joke. Major church denominations are quickly straying away from God and His Word, being led by these false teachers.

Folks, if you don’t want to be led astray, and many of you are, you really need to turn off the TV and get in the Bible. The Bible is where God speaks to His children, and if you are His, how can you not be interested in knowing what HE has to say?

The smooth-talking, milk-toast clap-trap coming from the pulpits will do nothing but lead you down the wrong paths. These spiritual whoremongers will lead you to the same destruction that they will experience. We all need the Truth, and only in God’s Word will we find it.

If you have a God-fearing man of God leading you, pray for him and thank God every night for him. If you don’t know, get in the Word and ask the Lord’s guidance in your life. Until you get in the Word and allow the Holy Spirit of God to teach and lead you, you will never know. You’ll just be one of the blind following the blind.

I urge you to not be naïve when considering the wiles of the Devil. The Apostle Peter said.

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” (1 Peter 5:8)

Maybe you think Satan spends all his time in Vegas or Hollywood, or Washington D.C. Think again, he loves it behind the pulpits. He gets so much more done for his cause behind the pulpits than anywhere else.

Know what is behind your pulpit. He may be an under shepherd for Jesus Christ, or he may be a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

false-prophet

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=4947

US Senate: Will back Israeli attack on Iran

Foreign Relations Committee of the US Senate votes in favor of resolution stipulating that US will support Israel in case it was forced to take military action against Iran
Yitzhak Benhorin

WASHINGTON — Members of the US Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee have adopted “Senate Resolution 65,” according to which the US will support Israel in case it is compelled to take military action and actualize its right to self defense in the face of an Iranian threat.

The resolution stipules that Israel will enjoy Washington’s diplomatic, economic and military aid.

According to the resolution, sponsored by Sen. Robert Menendez and Sen. Lindsey Graham, the US’s policy is to halt Iranian nuclear ambitions.

Senate Resolution 65 has successfully gained the support of 70 of the 100 senators.

In a statement issued by AIPAC it was noted that “The Senate Foreign Relations Committee has sent a very clear and enormously important message of solidarity with Israel against the Iranian nuclear threat—which endangers American, Israeli, and international security.”

President Barack Obama sent his holiday wishes to Israel on its 65th Independence Day, stating: “On this date 65 years ago, the Jewish people realized their dream of the ages – to be masters of their fate in their own sovereign state.”

“The strong and prosperous Israel we see today proves Herzl’s vision – ‘if you will it, it is no dream,” the US president added.

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Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=4942

Is Pope Francis Laying The Groundwork For A One World Religion?

Does Pope Francis intend to help the global elite achieve their goal of uniting all of the religions of the world under a single banner?  Will he be instrumental in establishing a single global religion for the glorious “new age” that the global elite believe is coming?  After he was elected, the cover of Time Magazine declared Pope Francis to be the “New World Pope“, and since his election Pope Francis has made it abundantly clear that he is going to make ecumenical outreach a top priority.  He has spoken of his “determination to continue on the path of ecumenical dialogue“, and he has already held a number of very high profile ecumenical meetings.  Not only has he worked hard to reach out to leaders from various Christian traditions, he has also made it a point to try to acknowledge the mutual bonds that he feels with all other religions.  For example, in one recent address he made it a point to say that he believes that Muslims worship and pray to the “one God” that he also worships.  This “all roads lead to the same God” philosophy is a hallmark of the one world religion that the global elite have been slowly building toward for decades.  The global elite know that even with a one world economy and a one world government, humanity will never be truly united until there is a single global religion.  Unfortunately, this one world religion that they are seeking to establish is diametrically opposed to the Christianity that we find in the Bible.  By throwing out Biblical truth for the sake of “friendship between men and women of different religious traditions“, is Pope Francis fundamentally betraying the faith that he claims to represent?

If there is going to be a one world religion, there will have to be a bond formed between Roman Catholicism and Islam.  They are the two largest religious traditions on the planet, and so any truly “global religion” would definitely require the participation of both of them.

That is one reason why what Pope Francis has already had to say about Islam is so noteworthy.  The following comes from remarks that he made during his very first ecumenical meeting

I then greet and cordially thank you all, dear friends belonging to other religious traditions; first of all the Muslims, who worship the one God, living and merciful, and call upon Him in prayer, and all of you. I really appreciate your presence: in it I see a tangible sign of the will to grow in mutual esteem and cooperation for the common good of humanity.

The Catholic Church is aware of the importance of promoting friendship and respect between men and women of different religious traditions – I wish to repeat this: promoting friendship and respect between men and women of different religious traditions – it also attests the valuable work that the Pontifical Council for interreligious dialogue performs.

But are “Allah” and the God of the Bible the same thing?

Of course not.  For example, Christians believe that Jesus Christ is God.  Muslims deny this vehemently.  For much more on why “Allah” and the God of the Bible are not the same, please see this article.

So either Pope Francis is denying the divinity of Jesus Christ, or he is exhibiting a frightening ignorance of basic Christian theology, or there is some other agenda at work here.

During that same ecumenical meeting, Pope Francis also made it a point to state that he feels “close” to those that belong “to any religious tradition”…

In this, we feel close even to all those men and women who, whilst not recognizing themselves belonging to any religious tradition, feel themselves nevertheless to be in search of truth, goodness and beauty, this truth, goodness and beauty of God, and who are our precious allies in efforts to defend the dignity of man, in building a peaceful coexistence among peoples and in guarding Creation carefully.

It is one thing to love people and to seek to build friendships with them, but it is another thing entirely to throw out the most basic beliefs of the faith that you supposedly represent in order to promote a specific agenda.

And Pope Francis definitely appears to have an agenda.  On another occasion, Pope Francis declared that it was time “to intensify dialogue” with other religions, and that he was “thinking particularly of dialogue with Islam.”

But this affinity for Islam did not just begin recently.  The truth is that Pope Francis was working hard to build bridges with Islam even when he was the Archbishop of Buenos Aires

“His humility drew my attention,” Sheik Mohsen Ali, an important Islamic leader in Argentina, told the Buenos Aires Herald. He “always showed himself a friend of the Islamic community.”

And Pope Francis has a reputation for being a cleric that really “knows Islam“…

Sumer Noufouri, secretary-general of the Islamic Center of the Republic of Argentina, told the Buenos Aires Herald that the new pope is a “respectful, pro-dialogue person who knows Islam.”

But of course Pope Francis is not just reaching out to the Islamic world.

He has also been working hard to “intensify dialogue” with other Christian traditions.

In particular, he seems quite interested in improving relations with the Orthodox churches of the east…

Before his address, the pope had a private meeting with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew from Istanbul, who attended Francis’s inaugural Mass on Tuesday.

It was the first time the spiritual head of Orthodox Christians had attended a Roman pope’s inaugural Mass since the Great Schism between western and eastern Christianity in 1054.

At Wednesday’s meeting, Francis called Bartholomew “my brother Andrew,” a reference to the apostle who was the brother of St. Peter and was the first bishop of the Church of Byzantium.

Francis also held a private session with Metropolitan Hilarion, the foreign minister of the Russian Orthodox Church, the largest in the Orthodox world.

It won’t happen tomorrow, of course, but could Pope Francis be the Pope that brings the Roman Catholics and the Orthodox back together?

And of course a one world religion will not appear overnight either.  There are far too many differences to overcome right now.

But as the world becomes increasingly unstable, people are going to be looking for answers.  After the world is ravaged by economic collapse, food shortages, nightmarish pandemics, unprecedented natural disasters and horrifying wars, will it finally be ready for a one world religion that promises “peace and friendship” among all of the religions of the globe?

This is something to watch for in the years ahead.  The global elite desperately want a single global religion, and they will keep moving things in that direction.

For now, Pope Francis just seems to be laying the groundwork for the one world religion that is coming.  There is a 900-year-old prophecy that indicates that Pope Francis could be the last Pope.  If that prophecy is true, then it will be very important to watch the actions of this Pope very carefully.

So what do you think about all of this?

pope francis

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=4929

The Nephilim Returns Study

Please take the time to read my latest study on the Nephilim returning.

Keep looking up!

The Nephilim Return

 

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Egypt and Sudan: The emerging “King of the South” alliance?

Egyptian President Mohammad Morsi and Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir have met together to declare bilateral relations between their two countries. You can read about these meetings at Front Page Magazine here. Ahram online also reported on the meeting here. Both leaders rose to power through the support of the Muslim Brotherhood within their respective nations. Why might this be significant as it relates to Biblical prophecy? Well, in Daniel 11:43, we are told that in “the last days”, there would specifically emerge an Egyptian-Sudanese-Libyan alliance. In verse 40, we are told that in the last days, there would be a military clash between the “King of the South” (Egypt) and “the King of the North”. Historically, this refers to the region where Syria, Turkey, and Iraq intersect, but which I believe it refers to modern day Turkey. The Scriptural basis for this first, is the clear emphasis of Ezekiel 38-39 on Asia Minor / Turkey as well as the fact that it was in Turkey that the World witnessed the “fatal head wound” of the seventh beast empire. Revelation 13 and 17 informs us that after the Roman Empire, another empire, a seventh empire, would emerge that would suffer a fatal head wound but that would eventually be revived as the eighth empire, it stands to reason that even as it was the Ottoman Empire / Caliphate that suffered the head wound. It this stands to reason that because it was in the Ottoman Empire that the historical continuum of the Islamic Caliphates suffered a fatal head wound, so also will the Ottoman Empire experience the miraculous revival. And of course, on the ground, all evidence points now to a re-emergent Turkey with growing regional influence and stature. The fact that we are seeing an emerging Turkish power in the North at the same time that we are seeing an emerging assertive Egypt is certainly worth watching. And as the African nations of Egypt and Sudan, two of the nations specifically highlighted by the prophet Daniel begin to publicly identify with one another, then we also must ask if we are drawing closer. While it is too soon to know for sure or to declare these things with clarity, it certainly does seem to be moving in the direction of fulfilling the prophecy of Daniel 11. The return of Jesus very well could be much closer than many think. Let us be about the work of God.

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More Than 101 Million Working Age Americans Do Not Have A Job

Michael Snyder
Economic Collapse
April 8, 2013

The jobs recovery is a complete and total myth. The percentage of the working age population in the United States that had a job in March 2013 was exactly the same as it was all the way back in March 2010. In addition, as you will see below, there are now more than 101 million working age Americans that do not have a job. But even though the employment level in the United States has consistently remained very low over the past three years, the Obama administration keeps telling us that unemployment is actually going down. In fact, they tell us that the unemployment rate has declined from a peak of 10.0% all the way down to 7.6%. And they tell us that in March the unemployment rate fell by 0.1% even though only 88,000 jobs were added to the U.S. economy. But it takes at least 125,000 new jobs a month just to keep up with population growth. So how in the world are they coming up with these numbers? Well, the reality is that the entire decline in the unemployment rate over the past three years can be accounted for by the reduction in size of the labor force. In other words, the Obama administration is getting unemployment to go down by pretending that millions upon millions of unemployed Americans simply do not want jobs anymore. We saw this once again in March. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics,more than 600,000 Americans dropped out of the labor market during that month alone. That pushed the labor force participation rate down to 63.3%, which is the lowest it has been in more than 30 years. So please don’t believe the hype. The sad truth is that there has been no jobs recovery whatsoever.

If things were getting better, there would not be more than 101 million working age Americans without a job.

So exactly where does that statistic come from? Well, the following explains where I got that number…

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are 11,742,000working age Americans that are officially unemployed.

In addition, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says that there are89,967,000 working age Americans that are “not in the labor force”. That is a new all-time record, and that number increased by a whopping663,000 during the month of March alone.

When you add 11,742,000 working age Americans that are officially unemployed to the 89,967,000 working age Americans that are “not in the labor force”, you come up with a grand total of 101,709,000 working age Americans that do not have a job.

When you stop and think about it, that is an absolutely staggering statistic.

And anyone that tells you that “a higher percentage of Americans are working today” is telling you a complete and total lie. During the last recession the percentage of working age Americans with a job fell dramatically, and since then we have not seen that number bounce back at all. In fact, this is the very first time in the post-World War II era that we have not seen the employment-population ratio bounce back after a recession. At this point, the employment-population ratio has been under 60 percent for 49 months in a row…

                       

Since the end of 2009, the employment-population ratio has been remarkably steady. Just check out these numbers…

March 2008: 62.7 percent

March 2009: 59.9 percent

March 2010: 58.5 percent

March 2011: 58.4 percent

March 2012: 58.5 percent

March 2013: 58.5 percent

We should be thankful that the percentage of working age Americans with a job did not continue to decline, but we should also be quite alarmed that it has not bounced back at all.

If there was going to be a recovery, there would have been one by now. The next major economic downturn is rapidly approaching, and that is going to push the employment-population ratio down even farther.

So why is the U.S. economy not producing as many jobs as it used to? Well, certainly the overall decline of the economy has a lot to do with it. We are a nation that is drowning in debt and that is getting poorer by the day.

But since the end of the last recession, corporate profits have bounced back in a big way and are now at an all-time high. So you would figure that the big corporations should be able to hire a lot more workers by now.

Unfortunately, that is not the way things work anymore. Big corporations are trying to minimize the number of expensive American workers that they have on their payrolls as much as possible these days.

One way that they are doing this is through the use of technology. Thanks to robots, computers and other forms of technology, big corporations simply do not need as many human workers as they used to. In future years, this trend is only going to accelerate. I wrote about how this is changing the world of employment in one of my previous articles entitled “Rise Of The Droids: Will Robots Eventually Steal All Of Our Jobs?

Another way that big corporations are replacing expensive American workers is by shipping their jobs off to the other side of the globe. Big corporations know that they can make bigger profits by making stuff in foreign countries where they can pay workers less than a dollar an hour with no benefits. How in the world are American workers supposed to compete with that?

For much more on how U.S. jobs are being killed by offshoring, please see this article: “55 Reasons Why You Should Buy Products That Are Made In America“.

And of course immigration is having a dramatic impact on the labor market in some areas of the country as well. Cheap labor has dramatically driven down wages in a lot of professions. For example, once upon a time you could live a very nice middle class lifestyle as a roofer. But now many roofers really struggle to make a living.

When you add everything up, it paints a very bleak picture for the future of the American worker.

The cost of living keeps rising much faster than wages do, and the competition for good jobs has become incredibly fierce.

Meanwhile, the government continues to make things even easier for those that are not working. This has caused some Americans to give up completely and to be content with letting the government take care of them. The following is from a recent article by Monty Pelerin

As we make it easier to get unemployment benefits for longer time periods, more people take advantage of the system. So too with food stamps and disability. All programs are at or near record levels in what is supposed to be four years into an economic recovery. For many, the benefits of becoming a government dependent exceed what they can earn. One study reported that a family of four, collecting all the benefits for which they were entitled, would have to earn $65,000 per annum to have the same after-tax purchasing power.

If you are a product of the government schools and are legal to work (i.e., have skills enough that you are affordable at the minimum wage or higher), at what point do you realize that there is no need to go through the hassle of actual work. You can live pretty well by staying home and taking advantage of the entitlements available to you. That is exactly what a larger and larger percentage of the population are realizing. In many cases, it is economically irrational to work.

This behavior creates a social pathology that only worsens over time. Kids learn from their parents that work is not necessary and the many ways to game the system. In this regard, look for this problem to become worse over time unless these programs are cut back.

In some areas of the country, it actually pays not to work very hard. According to Gary Alexander, the Secretary of Public Welfare for the state of Pennsylvania, a “single mom is better off earnings gross income of $29,000 with $57,327 in net income & benefits than to earn gross income of $69,000 with net income and benefits of $57,045.”

But the truth is that most Americans still want to work hard and would gladly take a good job if they could just find one. The following is one example that was featured in a recent Fox News article

After a full year of fruitless job hunting, Natasha Baebler just gave up.

She’d already abandoned hope of getting work in her field, working with the disabled. But she couldn’t land anything else, either — not even a job interview at a telephone call center.

Until she feels confident enough to send out resumes again, she’ll get by on food stamps and disability checks from Social Security and live with her parents in St. Louis.

“I’m not proud of it,” says Baebler, who is in her mid-30s and is blind. “The only way I’m able to sustain any semblance of self-preservation is to rely on government programs that I have no desire to be on.”

And that is how most Americans feel.

Most Americans do not want to be dependent on the government.

Most Americans want to work hard and take care of themselves.

Unfortunately, our economy is not producing nearly enough jobs for everyone and it never will again.

So there will continue to be millions upon millions of Americans that find that they cannot take care of themselves and their families without government assistance no matter how hard they try.

And this is just the beginning – things are going to get much worseduring the next major wave of the economic collapse.

Yes, at the moment there are more than 101 million working age Americans that do not have a job, but that number is actually going to go much higher in the years ahead. The anger and frustration caused by a lack of employment opportunities is going to shake this nation.

That is why it is important to try to become less dependent on your own job. In this economic environment, a job can disappear at literally any moment. Anything that you can do to become less dependent on the system would be a good thing

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‘GATE TO HELL’ DISCOVERED IN ANTICHRIST’S NEIGHBORHOOD

Joel Richardson

A significant recent archeological discovery in western Turkey may hold a prophetic hint as to the nation from which the Antichrist will someday burst forth onto the world scene.

According to a recent report by Fox News, archeologists have uncovered the ancient “gate to hell.” Not literally, of course, but rather they’ve discovered an ancient pagan temple known as “Pluto’s Gate,” the cave that was believed to be the portal to Hades, in Greco-Roman mythology.

According to the Greek geographer Strabo, the cave emitted a thick vapor that would kill any who came into contact with it. According to Francesco D’Andria, the archeologist who discovered the gate, “We could see the cave’s lethal properties during the excavation. Several birds died as they tried to get close to the warm opening, instantly killed by the carbon dioxide fumes.”

Some students of prophecy have noted the similarity of the gate to hell to the “Abyss” as described in the book of Revelation:

“When [the angel] opened the Abyss, smoke rose from it like the smoke from a gigantic furnace. The sun and sky were darkened by the smoke from the Abyss. And out of the smoke locusts came down on the earth and were given power like that of scorpions.” (Revelation 9:2-3)

What is more interesting about this find as it relates to biblical prophecy is the fact that the gate was discovered in modern-day Pamukkale, Turkey, known in ancient times as Hierapolis. According to the first-century historian known as Pliny the Elder, Hierapolis was also known as “Magog.”

In fact, it was specifically this ancient Turkish-Magog connection that informed the understanding of a wide range of Jewish and Christian theologians concerning the region from which the armies of Gog and Magog would descend into the land of Israel.

Gog and Magog, according to the biblical prophet Ezekiel, are armies of the final antagonists of the Jewish people, who would invade the land of Israel just prior to the return of Jesus. While many prophecy teachers today hold to the idea that the Battle of Gog of Magog is a preliminary and distinct battle from the final Battle of Armageddon, this belief is actually a relatively new minority view within church history. Consider the following partial survey of theologians, both Christian and Jewish, who have long looked for the Antichristian armies of Gog of Magog to come from the land of Turkey:

Hippolytus of Rome (170–235), an early Christian theologian, in his Chronicon, connected Magog with the Galatians in Asia Minor, or modern-day Turkey.

Moses Ben Maimonides (aka Rambam) (1135–1204), the revered Jewish sage, in Hichot Terumot, identified Magog as being on the border of Syria and modern-day Turkey.

Nicholas of Lyra (1270–1349), a Hebrew scholar and renowned biblical exegete, believed that Gog was another title of the Antichrist. Lyra also affirmed that the religion of the “Turks,” a term used to refer to Muslims in general, was the religion of the Antichrist.

Martin Luther (1483–1546), understood Gog to be a reference to the Turks, whom God had sent as a scourge to chastise Christians.

Sir Walter Raleigh (1554–1618), in his History of the World, also placed Magog in Asia Minor, or modern-day Turkey:

“Yet it is not to be denied, that the Scythians in old times coming out of the northeast, wasted the better part of Asia the Less, and possessed Coelesyria, where they built both Scythopolis and Hierapolis, which the Syrians call Magog. And that to this Magog Ezekiel had reference, it is very plain; for this city Hierapolis, or Magog, standeth due north from Judea, according to the words of Ezekiel, that from the north quarters those nations should come.”

John Wesley (1703–1755), in his Explanatory Notes on Ezekiel 38 and 39, identified the hoards of Gog and Magog with “the Antichristian forces” who would come from the region of modern day Turkey.

Jonathan Edwards (1703–1758), one of American history’s most renowned theologians, also viewed modern-day Turkey as the nation from which the coming Gog Magog invasion would come forth.

John Nelson Darby (1800–1882), the British-Irish evangelist and a father of modern Dispensationalism and Futurism, in his Synopsis of the Books of the Bible, views Gog as the final Antichristian forces God will bring against Israel:

“Gog is the end of all the dealings of God with respect to Israel, and that God brings up this haughty power in order to manifest on earth, by a final judgment, His dealings with Israel and with the Gentiles, and to plant His blessing, His sanctuary, and His glory in the midst of Israel.”

C.I. Scofield (1843–1921), author of the Scofield Reference Bible, viewed the oracle of Gog of Magog in Ezekiel 38 and 39 as speaking of the Battle of Armageddon. Scofield, spoke of Ezekiel’s oracle thusly:

“[T]hat destruction should fall at the climax of the last mad attempt to exterminate the remnant of Israel in Jerusalem. The whole prophecy belongs to the yet future ‘day of Jehovah’; Isaiah 2:10-22; Revelation 19:11-21 and to the Battle of Armageddon (Revelation 16:14).”

Charles Lee Feinberg (1909–1995), a prominent Messianic Jewish expositor in his commentary on Ezekiel, states, “The armies of chapter 38-39 would appear to be included in the universal confederacies seen in Zechariah 12 and 14.”

Charles Ryrie, in his Ryrie Study Bible, views Gog and his hordes as one and the same with the Antichrist and his armies.

Dave Hunt, apologist, author and radio commentator, identifies the Gog of Magog Battle with other Antichristic prophecies and views it as a reference to the ultimate battle of Armageddon.

Many other prominent Christian theologians could be cited. If all of these theologians are correct, and Antichrist/Gog does come forth from the modern nation of Turkey, then it would certainly seem appropriate that Turkey is the home to the mythological location of the ancient gateway to hell.

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