Two minuscule 2,600-year-old
inscriptions recently uncovered in the City of David’s Givati Parking Lot
excavation are vastly enlarging the understanding of ancient Jerusalem in the
late 8th century BCE.
The two inscriptions,
in paleo-Hebrew writing, were found separately in a large First Temple
structure within the span of a few weeks by long-term team members Ayyala Rodan
and Sveta Pnik.
One is a bluish agate stone seal
“(belonging) to Ikkar son of Matanyahu” (LeIkkar Ben Matanyahu). The
other is a clay seal impression, “(belonging) to Nathan-Melech, Servant of the
Eved HaMelech). Nathan-Melech is named in 2 Kings as
an official in the court of King Josiah.
This burnt clay impression is the
first archaeological evidence of the biblical name Nathan-Melech.
The inscriptions are “not just
another discovery,” said archaeologist Dr. Yiftah Shalev of the Israel
Antiquities Authority. Rather, they “paint a much larger picture of the era in
According to Shalev, while both
discoveries are of immense scholarly value as inscriptions, their primary value
is their archaeological context.
The ‘Natan-Melech/Eved Hamelech’
bulla found in the City of David. (Eliyahu Yanai, City of David)
“What is importance is not just that
they were found in Jerusalem, but [that they were found] inside their true
archaeological context,” Shalev told The Times of Israel. Many other seals and
seal impressions have been sold on the antiquities market without any thought
This in situ find, said Shalev,
serves to “connect between the artifact and the actual physical era it was
found in” — a large, two-story First Temple structure that dig archaeologists
have pegged as an administrative center.
“It is not a coincidence that the
seal and the seal impression are found here,” said Shalev.
It is not a coincidence that the seal
and the seal impression are found here
According to archaeologist Prof.
Yuval Gadot of Tel Aviv University, in the 8th century BCE, this area of the
City of David becomes the central administrative center of Jerusalem. The newly
unearthed two-story public building, constructed with finely cut ashlar stones
shows, illustrates the beginning of a westward move of the administration area
in the large sprawling city.
Mendel-Geberovich believes “Ikkar”
refers to a personal name rather than an occupation. If so, this would be the
first evidence of such a name. The other portions of the inscription are more
familiar to biblical Hebrew linguists: “The name Matanyahu appears both in the
Bible and on additional stamps and bullae already unearthed,” said
What is most likely to capture
popular interest is the burnt clay seal impression, which features the words:
“(belonging) to Nathan-Melech, Servant of the King” (LeNathan-Melech Eved
HaMelech).” The fact that it was written without a surname indicates his fame
is on par with celebs of today, such as singers Madonna or Adele.
The name Nathan-Melech appears once
in the Bible, in the second book of Kings 23:11. An official in the court
of King Josiah, the biblical Nathan-Melech took part in implementation of
widespread religious reform: “And he took away the horses that the kings of
Judah had given to the sun, at the entrance of the house of the Lord, by the
chamber of Nathan-Melech the officer, which was in the precincts; and he burned
the chariots of the sun with fire.”
While the biblical account uses a
different title than that impressed on the ancient clay, the title “Servant of
the King” (Eved
HaMelech) does often appear in the Bible to describe a high-ranking
official close to the king. According to the IAA, the title appears on other
stamps and seal impressions that were found in the past. In ancient times, seal
impressions, or bullae, were small pieces of clay impressed by personal seals
(such as the “Ikkar” seal) to sign letters.
But is this the very same biblical
Nathan-Melech? That’s still a matter of interpretation.
Doron Spielman, vice president of the
City of David Foundation, which operates the City of David National Park, said,
“This is an extremely exciting find for billions of people worldwide. The
personal seal of Natan-Melech, a senior official in the government of Josiah,
King of Judah, as described in the second book of Kings. The ongoing
archaeological excavations at the City of David continue to prove that ancient
Jerusalem is no longer just a matter of faith, but also a matter of fact.”
However, scholar Mendel-Geberovich
isn’t as quick to confirm the tie.
“Although it is not possible to
determine with complete certainty that the Nathan-Melech who is mentioned in
the Bible was in fact the owner of the stamp, it is impossible to ignore some
of the details that link them together,” said Mendel-Geberovich diplomatically.
We have never seen catastrophic flooding like this, and the NOAA is now telling us that there will be more major flooding for at least two more months. On Thursday, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration warned that “historic, widespread flooding” would “continue through May”. More than 90 percent of the upper Midwest and Great Plains is currently covered by an average of 10.7 inches of snow, and all of that snow is starting to melt. That means that we are going to transition from one of the worst winters in modern history to a flood season that has already taken an apocalyptic turn for farmers all across America. At this moment, millions of acres of farmland are already underwater. Thousands of farmers are not going to be able to plant crops this year, and thousands of other farmers that have been financially ruined by the floods will never return to farming again. This is already the worst agricultural disaster in modern American history, and it is going to get a whole lot worse.
I posted an article about this crisis yesterday, and I am troubled by the fact
that most Americans don’t seem to understand the gravity of what we are facing.
Millions of bushels of wheat, corn and soybeans have been destroyed by flood
waters, hundreds of millions of dollars worth of livestock have been lost, and
all of us will soon be feeling a lot more pain at the grocery store.
And this would be a complete and utter national nightmare even if the
flooding was all over, but the NOAA just told us that we should expect more
catastrophic flooding for the next two months…
In fact, the NOAA is using the words “unprecedented flood season” to
describe what is coming, and they are warning that “more than 200 million people” are at risk…
Forecasters warned the floods would likely to continue through May, and
could worsen in the coming weeks.
“This is shaping up to be a potentially unprecedented flood season,
with more than 200 million people at risk,” Ed Clark, director of the
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Water Center
in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, said on Thursday in the agency’s spring outlook.
Of all the natural disasters that we have seen in recent years, this is the
biggest, and U.S. food production is going to be dramatically affected because
many farmers will not be able
to grow crops at all in 2019…
“The reality is this isn’t going to be over for a very long time,” Jorgenson
said. “It took years after 2011 for people to come back. For me as a farmer,
there are flooded acres here that to think that I’ll be able to plant a
crop in 45 days is just virtually impossible.”
And many farmers will never recover from this disaster at all.
According to one farmer in Iowa, somewhere
around half of the farmers in his entire county will not be able to come back
“I would say 50% of the farmers in our area will not recover from
this,” Dustin Sheldon, a farmer in southwestern Iowa’s
flood-devastated Fremont County near the swollen Missouri River, said this
I said it yesterday, and I will say it again.
This is the worst blow to U.S. agriculture that I have seen in my entire
The amount of food that has just been lost is absolutely staggering.
Due to the trade war, farmers were storing more wheat, corn and soybeans than
ever before, and now the floodwaters have destroyed much of what had been stored…
As prices plummeted last year amid the ongoing trade fight, growers,
faced with selling crops at a loss, stuffed a historic volume of grain into
winding plastic tubes and steel bins. Some cash-strapped families piled crops
inside their barns or outside on the ground.
Farmers say they are now finding storage bags torn and bins burst open,
grain washed away or contaminated. Jeff Jorgenson, a farmer and regional
director for the Iowa Soybean Association, said he has seen at least a dozen
bins that burst after grains swelled when they became wet.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, any wheat, corn or soybeans
that are contaminated by flood waters must be destroyed.
I know that I shared the following quote yesterday, but in order to give you an idea
of the scope of the losses we are looking at, I want to share it again…
As of Dec. 1, producers in states with flooding – including South Dakota,
Nebraska, Kansas, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Wisconsin and Illinois – had
6.75 billion bushels of corn, soybeans and wheat stored on their farms – 38
percent of the total U.S. supplies available at that time, according
to U.S. Department of Agriculture data.
And remember, the flooding is just getting started.
Needless to say, prices will be going way up at the grocery store, and they
will keep going up for the rest of the year.
Sadly, even after the flood waters are gone the damage that has been done to
our agricultural infrastructure will take years to repair…
As the waters began to recede in parts of Nebraska, the damage to the rural
roads, bridges and rail lines was just beginning to emerge. This infrastructure
is critical for the U.S. agricultural sector to move products from farms to
processing plants and shipping hubs.
The damage to roads means it will be harder for trucks to deliver seed to
farmers for the coming planting season, but in some areas, the flooding on
fields will render them all-but-impossible to use.
In Nebraska alone, hundreds of miles of rural roads have been completely
washed out, and farmers such as Annette Bloom are having an extremely difficult
time just getting to a main road…
“We are having to travel three miles through pasture and cropland
just to get out because our roads are gone,” she says. “And the corn
fields are going to be devastating to get in and plant and get that going,
because usually we’re planting within the next two weeks and it’s not going to
Many of America’s farmers will bravely keep going after this disaster, but
for many others a financial breaking point has arrived.
Farm bankruptcies had already surged to the highest level since the last
recession prior to all of this flooding, and now this crisis will end up
driving many of them away from the profession for good. The following
comes from NBC News…
farmers in Fremont County will probably not return to till their soil, many
farmers here said.
“Lot of folks won’t be able to continue after
this,” said Julius Schaaf, 66, who said 1,500 of his 4,000 acres were currently
In the end, it is going to be a while before we know the full extent of the
damage to America’s farms and our food supply, but all of the experts agree
that it will be unprecedented.
Food prices are already high, but the truth is that this is as low as they
are going to get. Much less food will be produced in our heartland this
year, and that will mean skyrocketing prices at our grocery stores.
And this is just one element of “the perfect storm” that is emerging. Our society is
starting to be shaken in many different ways, and 2019 is certainly shaping up
to be a very “interesting” year.
A team of French archaeologists has located the remains of a
lost ancient city in Iraqi Kurdistan.
Over the course of six excavations between 2012 and 2018,
researchers uncovered the ancient city at Kunara near the Zagros mountains.
Previously, experts had been prevented from exploring the site near the modern
city of Sulaymaniyah by Saddam Hussein’s regime and conflicts in the region.
Located on the western border of the Mesopotamian Empire, the city may have
been an important center of an ancient mountainous people known as the Lullubi,
according to experts.
The first of the cuneiform tablets discovered during the Kunara excavation.
The tablet records the delivery of different types of flour. (A. Tenu / Mission
archéologique française du Peramagron)
Large stone foundations were discovered at the site, which dates to around
2200 B.C. Dozens of clay tablets covered with cuneiform writing were also
found, shedding light on the city’s agriculture. For example, the first of the
clay tablets discovered records the delivery of different types of flour.
The archaeologists’ research indicates that the city’s demise occurred about
4,000 years ago when it was ravaged by fire.
However, the city’s name is still unknown. Further excavation of the site
will take place in the fall.
The small cup-shaped indents in this structure may have served a ceremonial
purpose, according to archaeologists. (D. Sarmiento Castillo / Mission
archéologique française du Peramagron)
Ancient sites in other parts of the world are also revealing their secrets.
Last year, archaeologists in Greece located the remains of a lost city believed to have been
settled by captives from the Trojan War.
Separately in 2018, archaeologists in Western Mexico used sophisticated
laser technology to discover a lost city that may have had as many buildings as
In 2017, archaeologists harnessed spy satellite imagery and drones to help identify the site of an ancient lost city in Northern Iraq.
An arrowhead fragment made of obsidian, or volcanic glass. that was
discovered at the site. The obsidian comes from Anatolia, which is several
hundred miles from Kunara, according to experts. (F.
Marchand/Mission archéologique française du Peramagron)
The Qalatga Darband site overlooks the Lower Zab river at the western edge
of the Zagros Mountains, is part of a historic route from ancient Mesopotamia
Experts recently created a stunning digital reconstruction of a centuries-old lost
city discovered in South Africa. In another project, researchers have shed new
light on the events that led to the demise of the ancient Cambodian megacity of
Pope Francis joined the Moroccan monarch in declaring the city the “common patrimony” of Christians, Jews and Muslims, on the first day of a visit to the North African country. The spiritual leader of the world’s 1.3 billion Catholics was invited by King Mohammed VI for the sake of “inter-religious dialogue,” according to Moroccan authorities. The statement Thursday made no mention of any Jewish link to Jerusalem.
Francis and Moroccan King Mohammed VI called on Saturday for Jerusalem to be
preserved as a symbol of peaceful coexistence where Jews, Muslims and
Christians can be allowed to worship freely.
Just like everything that comes out of the mouth of the Roman pope, it was a
tiny nugget of truth encompassed about with layers and layers of lies. Yes,
Jerusalem is claimed by Jews, Christians and Muslims, absolutely, but of those
three only the first two are mentioned in the bible as being ordained by God.
The Muslims are the bastard children of Abraham, and are specifically mentioned
in the Bible as have none inheritance. The children of Abraham
through Hagar are to be “cast out” as we see here:
“For it is written, that
Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a freewoman. But he
who was of the bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the freewoman was
by promise. Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman
and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of
the freewoman.” Galatians 4:22,23,30 (KJV)
So that takes care of Lie #1 of Pope Francis, let’s move on to the second
whopper he told in Morocco. This idea that Jerusalem cannot belong solely to
the Jews because it “has to be shared” is another oft-repeated fact that is
just not so. The bible says that the Battle of Armageddon, seen below in
Joel 3, is fought over the fact that somebody, namely Antichrist, has “parted”
God’s land of Israel in general, and Jerusalem in particular. That’s right,
Jerusalem belongs to God.
“For, behold, in those
days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and
Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the
valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my
heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my
land.” Joel 3:1,2 (KJV)
Isn’t it funny how whenever the Roman pontiff talks about Jerusalem, he
never mentions that it is the capital of Israel and as such is not up to be
shared by whoever feels like grabbing a piece of it? He speaks of Jerusalem like
a commodity that can be bought and sold, and indeed it will be. By Antichrist
in the time of Jacob’s trouble.
in Morocco urges Jerusalem be protected for all religions
FROM THE TIME OF ISRAEL: Pope Francis joined the Moroccan monarch in declaring the
city the “common patrimony” of Christians, Jews and Muslims, on the first day
of a visit to the North African country. The spiritual leader of the world’s
1.3 billion Catholics was invited by King Mohammed VI for the sake of
“inter-religious dialogue,” according to Moroccan authorities.
In a joint statement, the two
leaders said Jerusalem was “common patrimony of humanity and especially the
followers of the three monotheistic religions,” during the pontiff’s visit to
“The specific multi-religious
character, the spiritual dimension and the particular cultural identity of
Jerusalem… must be protected and promoted,” they said in the declaration
released by the Vatican.
The statement contrasted sharply with a joint communique put out by Mohammed and Jordan’s
King Abdullah on Thursday vowing to safeguard Jerusalem against attempts to
change its Islamic or Christian identity.
The statement Thursday made no
mention of any Jewish link to Jerusalem.
Improving relations with other religions has been a priority for the Argentine
pontiff, whose papacy has been marred by a wave of child sex abuse allegations
ANTICHRIST: POPE FRANCIS TELLS
CATHOLICS IN ROME THAT A ‘PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP’ WITH JESUS IS ‘DANGEROUS AND
Addressing thousands of Moroccans who had braved the rain to attend the welcome
ceremony, Francis said it was “essential to oppose fanaticism.”
He stressed the need for
“appropriate preparation of future religious guides”, ahead of meeting trainee
imams later on Saturday.
Catholics are a tiny minority in the country where 99 percent of the
population is Muslim. The king is revered across West Africa as “commander of
Speaking at the ceremony at the Tour
Hassan mosque and nearby mausoleum in Rabat, Francis defended “freedom of
conscience” and “religious freedom.”
“Live as brothers,” he told a crowd
of around 25,000, after arriving from the airport in his Popemobile, passing
rows of Moroccan and Vatican City flags.
The 21st century keepers of this 2,000-year old church are certain it was started by the half-brother of Jesus, James. Jewish Christians were under heavy persecution from the Roman Empire in the days before Rome created the Catholic Church. The other early Christian church from around 300 AD has tile mosaics on the floors illustrating scenes from the book of Revelation.
There are two notable men named James we read about in the New Testament.
There was James Zebedee, the brother of John, who the Bible refers to as the
“sons of thunder”. The ‘other’ James is the half-brother of
the Lord Jesus Himself.
Recently, I came across these amazing videos of
archaeological discoveries dating back to the First Century AD, showing what is
purported to be perhaps the very first Christian church in Jerusalem, one that
was started by James, the half-brother of Jesus. Not to be confused with James,
the brother of John, who wrote the book of James that bears his name.
“Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to
see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days. But other of the apostles saw I
none, save James the Lord’s brother.” Galatians 1:18,19 (KJV)
I present these videos to you for your viewing pleasure, and hope that you
will all check them out by comparing them with scripture to see if they match
up with the biblical timeline. I am by no means a biblical archaeologist, but I
have watched them many times and remain fascinated by what they show.
Secret Church From First Century Discovered On Mt. Zion
The 21st century keepers of this 2,000-year old church
are certain it was started by the half-brother of Jesus, James. Jewish
Christians were under heavy persecution from the Roman Empire in the days
before Rome created the
Amazing Discovery Shows Scenes From Book Of Revelation
This one really sent chills down my spine, an
early Christian church from around 300 AD that has tile mosaics on the floors
illustrating scenes from the book of Revelation.
The Two Men Named James
FUN FACTS: There are two notable men named James we read
about in the New Testament. There was James Zebedee, the brother of John, that
the Bible refers to as the “sons of thunder”. Along with the apostle Peter,
this trio was blessed to be allowed to witness some amazing things.
“And James the son of Zebedee, and
John the brother of James; and he surnamed them Boanerges, which is, The sons
of thunder:” Mark 3:17 (KJV)
Peter, James and John were there in the ‘inner circle’ in
Matthew 17 where they witnessed the miracle on the Mount of Transfiguration,
and listened in rapturous wonder as Jesus told them of the last days and the
end of the world in Mark 13 and Matthew 24.
“And when James,
Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given
unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that
we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.”
Galatians 2:9 (KJV)
The ‘other’ James is the half-brother of the Lord Jesus
Himself, and he was used mightily as well. James was personally acquainted with
and sought out by the apostle Paul at the start of his ministry as recorded in
Galatians, and later was the chair of the Council At Jerusalem in Acts 15 where
Paul’s gospel of the grace of God was formally adopted by the church leaders.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Turkey’s pending purchase of the Russian S-400
missile defense system presents a national security problem for NATO, which
would not be able to deploy F-35 aircraft alongside the Russian systems, senior
U.S. officials said on Thursday.
The officials, who briefed a group of reporters on condition of anonymity,
said Turkey’s purchase of the S-400 system was not tantamount to it withdrawing
from NATO, but that Ankara’s purchase should be viewed as a national security
issue, not a merely commercial decision.
“We are continuing to work on a range of options to ensure that Turkey’s
participation in the NATO alliance and bilateral relationship can continue
unabated and unimpinged,” one of the officials said.
“The gravity of the risk to the F-35 both to the United States and to NATO
allies is such that the two systems cannot be co-located.”
NATO member Turkey has repeatedly said it is committed to buying the Russian
missile defense system, despite warnings from the United States that the S-400s
cannot be integrated into the NATO air defense system.
The U.S. State Department last week said Washington had told Turkey that if
it buys the S-400 systems, the United States will have to reassess Ankara’s
participation in the Lockheed Martin F-35 fighter program.
Washington has sought to persuade Turkey to instead purchase the American-made
Patriot defense system, but Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has said Ankara
remains committed to the deal for the Russian S-400 surface-to-air missile
The senior U.S. officials said Washington’s offer to sell Patriots to Turkey
continued and that the two sides remain in negotiations about it.
The Turkish government has already missed a “soft deadline” set by
Washington to decide whether to buy a $3.5 billion Raytheon Co. Patriot missile
shield system. The formal offer expires at the end of this month.
On Thursday, Erdogan repeated that it was not possible for Ankara to back
out of the deal with Russia.
Turkey’s insistence on buying the Russian system risks triggering a fresh
diplomatic crisis with Washington. If Ankara goes ahead with the Russian deal,
Turkey also could face sanctions under a U.S. law known as Countering America’s
Adversaries Through Sanctions Act.
The last diplomatic crisis between the two NATO allies contributed to
driving the Turkish lira to a record low in August. Disputes over strategy in
Syria, Iran sanctions and the detention of U.S. consular staff remain
unresolved, and the issue of missile defense threatens to widen the rift again.
“I will strengthen the house of Judah, and I will save the house of Joseph.
I will bring them back because I have compassion on them, and they shall be as
though I had not rejected them, for I am the Lord their God and I will answer
10:6 (The Israel Bible™)
A military installation near the Lebanese-Syrian
border may be producing precision surface-to-surface missiles, likely with
Iranian backing, according to an intelligence report. (Credit: ImageSat
A military installation near the Lebanese-Syrian border is being utilized to
produce precision surface-to-surface missiles, likely with Iranian backing,
according to an intelligence report published on Wednesday by ImageSat
The firm mentioned that neither warheads nor missile engines are being
manufactured at the compound in the northwestern Syrian city of Safita, which
is almost five miles from the border with Lebanon.
The factory, which is being built in the town of Safita, east of Tartus on
the Mediterranean coast, is in an area controlled by the Syrian regime and in
the vicinity of Russian SAM (surface-to-air missile) deployment.
“The construction patterns, the compound location and the activity signs at
the compound and its region, increase the probability that this is a missile
manufacturing site,” (ISI) said, adding that “if this site is indeed related to
SSM manufacturing it is possible that the two hangers include production line
and the third is for manufacture or assembly.”
The firm added that there has been increased vehicular activity to the
compound in recent months, in addition to a new water tower constructed there.
modern-day St. Louis, Missouri, you can find towering mounds of earth that
were once the product of a vast North American culture.
was the largest city built by this Native American civilization.
the ancient people who built Cahokia didn’t have a writing system, little
is known of their culture. Archaeological evidence, however, hints at a
Mesopotamia had Ur, a wealthy city from 2100 BCE and a towering ziggurat.
Egypt had Memphis and Alexandria, with their great pyramids and library,
respectively. The Toltecs or Totonacs, who resided in modern-day Mexico, had
Teotihuacan, which hosted over 125,000 people in its monolithic architecture.
Ancient cities seem to have sprung up all over the world, each of which must
have been magnificent sights in their day. But it seems like a handful of these
cities hog all the limelight. Though Teotihuacan may be known, for instance,
few are familiar with North America’s other great ancient city, Cahokia.
Mysterious mounds near St. Louis
Monks Mound, the largest remaining mound
in Cahokia. Image source: Wikimedia Commons
About 10 miles east of St. Louis, Missouri, 80 mounds of earth dot 2,200
acres of land, the largest of which covers 13.8 acres and rises 100 feet high.
These 80 mounds are the remainders of 120 mounds built 1,000 years before
Columbus reached North America by a forgotten people called the Mississippians,
named after the great river they lived near. All told, the mounds would have
required the excavation of about 55 million cubic feet of earth.
The Mississippian civilization is poorly understood; they had no writing
system, and by the time Europeans bothered to seriously document their culture,
they had been scattered, wiped out by European diseases they had no immunities
Instead, much of our understanding of the Mississippians has come from
archaeology, and the city of Cahokia represents the greatest trove of
archaeological evidence. The city was named after the Cahokia tribe that lived
in the area when the French first arrived, though they were not its original
inhabitants. In fact, by that time in the 17th century, Cahokia was abandoned.
Though the Mississippians had no writing system, Cahokia was clearly the
product of some kind of centralized planning. Its many great mounds are a
testament to that, as well as the 50-acre leveled plain of the city named the
Grand Plaza; the remains of a copper workshop; a palisade that surrounded its
central, ceremonial district; and large henges made of wood.
When Cahokia was at its greatest between
1050 and 1200 CE, it hosted an estimated 40,000 Mississippians, more than
the city of London at the time. The bulk of these people flocked to the city
between 1050 and 1100, where they built homes, established the
Grand Plaza, and built more mounds that raised important buildings over the
thousands of other homes in Cahokia.
Life in Cahokia
We can glean some other features of Cahokian life from the fragments they
left behind. We’ve found carved discs throughout Cahokia that were used in a
game called “chunkey” that was played on the large flat field of the
Grand Plaza. Participants rolled the chunkey stone across the field and threw spears toward
where they thought the stone would come to rest. Huge
audiences watched chunkey players, and players often gambled on the
But life in Cahokia wasn’t entirely fun and games. There is also evidence
that the Cahokians engaged in human sacrifice. At one mound in particular,
dubbed Mound 72, researchers found the remains of 272 people. In one instance
of sacrifice, 39 people were lined up in front of a pit and clubbed one by one,
falling into a mass grave. Two dozen different mass graves populate Mound
72, all of which contain the remains of people who had been strangled, clubbed, and even
But there’s also a more reverent
grave at Mound 72: a man buried on 20,000 beads made from seashells, which
were status symbols and luxury items in Mississippian culture. These beads were
arranged in the shape of a falcon. The falcon was an important symbol in
Mississippian culture, typically associated with great warriors and chunkey
The city’s decline
By the time Columbus and other Europeans arrived in America, Cahokia was
abandoned and had been since approximately 1300. What drove the Mississippians
away from the vast city is unclear. It’s possible there had been some kind of
conflict with another people — the palisade that encircled part of the city
speaks to that.
Or, it could be that the unique density of Cahokia led to its downfall. Few
other places in North America had tens of thousands of humans living in close
proximity with one another. It could be that disease wiped out the Cahokians or
that the area was overhunted, overfished, and overfarmed. Some evidence also
suggests that the area was severely flooded twice: once between 1100 and 1260 and
again between 1340 and 1460. Possibly a combination of these factors led the
mound-builders to abandon Cahokia.
Today, Cahokia is preserved as a historic site that anyone can visit.
However, Cahokia only gained its protective status in the 1960s. Prior to that,
it was the site of heavy development — some of its mounds had been leveled for
farming, airfields, housing, and highways. Fortunately, much of the site still
remains, and it represents one of the few ancient cities left to visit in North America.
Shane Idleman | Contributor to ChristianHeadlines.com | Tuesday, February 26, 2019
As I’ve stated before: With rapid-fire changes within a culture saturated by
political correctness and relativism, we are inclined to ask if there is any
hope for America. If we continue down this slippery slope, there is little
hope. Apart from a national spiritual awakening, it will be difficult to turn the
Titanic around—the vessel has been struck; what’s inside is spilling out. But
if God brings revival…if we once again set our hearts and minds on
Him…there is tremendous hope. Revival means to awaken, restore, renew, or
repair. In churches across America, crowd appeal and pleasing the masses tends
to be the goal rather than calling out destructive lifestyles, which can result
in revival and renewal.
A.W. Tozer in an article entitled, Prophetic Preaching, hit
the nail on the head when he wrote this, decades ago: “If Christianity is to
receive a rejuvenation, it must be by other means than any now being used. If
the Church in the second half of this century is to recover from the injuries
she suffered in the first half, there must appear a new type of preacher.”
Tozer also said, “The proper, ruler-of-the-synagogue type will never do.
Neither will the priestly type of man who carries out his duties, takes his pay
and asks no questions, nor the smooth-talking pastoral type who knows how to
make the Christian religion acceptable to everyone. All these have been tried
and found wanting.”
He concludes, “Another kind of religious leader must arise among us. He must
be of the old prophet type, a man who has seen visions of God and has heard a
voice from the Throne. When he comes (and I pray God there will be not one but
many), he will stand in flat contradiction to everything our smirking, smooth
civilization holds dear. He will contradict, denounce and protest in the name
of God and will earn the hatred and opposition of a large segment of
Christendom. Such a man is likely to be lean, rugged, blunt-spoken and a little
bit angry with the world. He will love Christ and the souls of men to the point
of willingness to die for the glory of the One and the salvation of the other.
But he will fear nothing that breathes with mortal breath.”
Those who have been called to preach, much like the prophets in the Old
Testament, will confront compromise, condemn moral digression, and powerfully
denounce sin in the hope of reconciling man to God—they speak the truth in
love. The world, and carnal Christians, despise them because they challenge the
sin they enjoy.
Preachers will ruffle feathers and step on toes from time-to-time, but it
should be the result of the truth being spoken in love verses the preacher
having an arrogant and judgmental heart. In a sense, a preacher is called to
break the heart, a pastor to mend it; one concentrates on repentance, the other
restoration. Although there can be a mixture of both preacher and teacher in a
person, there is often a clear difference. Pastors (and teachers) aim for the
mind; preachers aim for the heart, will, and emotions—to stir and to convict.
The pastor builds—the preacher tears.
The pastor counsels—the preacher convicts.
The pastor rejoices—the preacher weeps.
The pastor plants—the preacher uproots.
The pastor teaches—the preacher preaches.
The pastor mends—the preacher breaks.
The pastor is full of hope—the preacher is full of fire.
The pastor loves to listen—the preacher needs to speak.
The pastor sees the good in others—the preacher sees the depravity in man.
The pastor desires to be among the people—the preacher desires to be alone
As the famous Puritan Richard Baxter said, “I preach as a dying man to dying
men”… as a dying man to a dying nation. The church, and our nation,
desperately needs to hear “the voice crying in the wilderness” to awaken,
convict, and restore.
All pastors should ask, “Does the world love the way we ‘do church’?” Do
they appreciate that your church never challenges, or calls things into
question? Do they like the fact that your church never makes them feel
uncomfortable or offended? Are they grateful that you never discuss
controversial issues? If so, you may want to reconsider Jesus’ words that true
disciples will be hated by the world because they speak the truth, not because
they avoid it.
Leonard Ravenhill, in Why Revival Tarries, wrote, “God has
always had His specialists whose chief concern has been the moral breakdown of
the nation and the church. Such men were Elijah, Jeremiah, Malachi, and others
of their kind who appeared at critical moments in history to reprove, rebuke,
and exhort in the name of God and righteousness. Such a man is likely to be
drastic and radical; the curious crowd that gathers to watch him will soon
brand him as extreme, fanatical, and negative…and, in a sense, they are
right…for he cannot turn off the burden of the Holy Ghost.”
I pray that God would raise up many humble preachers—men who allow God to
shape their sermons and penetrate their hearts to bring America, and the world,
to her knees.
The winds of war are blowing once again, and it isn’t going to take much to spark a major conflict in the Middle East. This week is the eighth anniversary of the beginning of the civil war in Syria, and after the nightmare that the people of Syria have been through, you would think that the Assad regime would be eager for peace. But instead, Assad appears to be ready to go for broke. If Syria can spark a Middle East war that results in the complete destruction of Israel, Assad would be remembered as a hero in the Islamic world forever. Instead of a legacy of civil war and crushing poverty, Assad’s legacy would be one of wartime leader that brought total victory over Syria’s most hated enemy. But of course such a conflict would be a huge risk, because if it went badly the city of Damascus would be completely flattened and the nation of Syria as we know it today would be entirely destroyed. And considering how overwhelmingly powerful the Israeli military is, it would seem to be a very foolish risk to take. Unfortunately, Assad does not appear to be thinking rationally. On Thursday, Syria officially threatened “to attack Israel unless it withdraws from the Golan Heights”. The following comes from the Jerusalem Post…
Syria vowed to attack Israel unless it withdraws from the Golan
Heights, World Israel News reported on Thursday.
Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad submitted an official warning
to the head of the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO)
Kristin Lund, in what seemed to be an attempt to prevent official US
recognition of Israeli sovereignty in the Golan.
Of course Israel is never going to leave the Golan
Heights. We all know how Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu feels,
and on Monday his main opposition in the upcoming election expressed similar
Blue and White party politicians Gabi Ashkenazi, Yair Lapid, Benny Gantz and
Moshe Ya’alon visited the Golan Heights on Monday and vowed never to give it
“We will increase the numbers of residents in the Golan, sending a
resounding message to all – we will never relinquish the Golan Heights,”
Let us hope that Syria is bluffing, because if Syria attacks the Golan
Heights it will start a war.
And it is a war that Syria could not possibly hope to win on their
own. But Assad doesn’t plan to take on Israel by himself.
Over the last several months, Israel has repeatedly attacked Iranian forces
inside Syria. The Iranians have been fighting on Assad’s side in the
Syrian civil war, and the Israelis are afraid that when everything is all said
and done that the nation of Syria will end up being totally dominated by
Iran. The following comes from Haaretz…
For Iran, its domination of Syria is key to achieving its long-standing
dream of a “Shiite crescent,” extending through
Iraq, Syria and Lebanon, to the Mediterranean and of establishing a permanent
ground, air and naval presence on Israel’s border. Iran’s ability to do so has
been impeded to date only by the small and dwindling U.S. force in eastern
Syria and hundreds of Israeli airstrikes that have, so far,
successfully thwarted Iran’s efforts.
Although Israel has become a powerful and essentially secure state, capable
of demonstrating restraint in the face of the many challenges it faces, this
would constitute a dire and unacceptable change in the balance of power, one
that Israel cannot tolerate and must prevent – even at the expense of
The Iranians have stated that they are no longer going to tolerate Israeli
airstrikes, and their military leadership is fully ready to go to war. If
war does erupt between Israel and Syria, it seems very unlikely that Iran would
stay out of it.
And without a doubt, Iranian targets would be among the first to get hit in
a war between Israel and Syria, and the Netanyahu administration has been very
clear that Israel is preparing for a war
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
startled Iranians and even the White House on Wednesday with a strident call
for Israeli-Arab action against the government in Tehran that was translated by
his office as urging “war with Iran.”
Israeli officials tried to soften the reference by altering the English
translation, the provocative comment was likely to further the perception that
Israel, its Gulf Arab neighbors and the United States are interested in using
military action to topple the government of Iran. It comes at a particularly
delicate moment, as the Trump administration uses a U.S.-organized summit in Warsaw
and this week’s 40th anniversary of the Iranian Revolution to try to rally the
world against the government in Tehran.
Such a war would be incredibly bloody, and the moment that missiles began to
fall on Tel Aviv the Israelis would not hesitate to use nukes on Damascus and
Let us hope that cooler heads prevail.
Meanwhile, the situation in Venezuela continues to unravel as well.
Sunday was the fourth day for the nationwide blackout, and Nicolas Maduro is
blaming the failure of the power grid on a U.S. cyberattack…
Socialist President Nicolas Maduro – who is facing a challenge to his rule
by the leader of the opposition-led congress, Juan Guaido – has blamed the
blackout on an act of “sabotage” by the United States at the Guri hydroelectric
dam, but experts say it is the outcome of years of underinvestment.
“The national electrical system has been subject to multiple
cyberattacks,” Maduro wrote on Twitter on Sunday. “However, we are
making huge efforts to restore stable and definitive supply in the coming
Hopefully the U.S. was not behind the cyberattack, because a cyberattack is
an act of war.
And since nobody has asked the U.S. Congress for permission to go to war,
such an attack would be in direct violation of the U.S. Constitution.
Unfortunately, our military is not in very good shape right now. In
fact, in RAND’s recent “simulated World War III scenarios” the U.S. just kept on losing…
In simulated World War III scenarios, the U.S. continues to lose
against Russia and China, two top war planners warned last week. “In
our games, when we fight Russia and China, blue gets its ass handed to it” RAND
analyst David Ochmanek said Thursday.
RAND’s wargames show how US Armed Forces – colored blue on wargame maps –
experience the most substantial losses in one scenario after another and
still can’t thwart Russia or China – which predictably is red –
from accomplishing their objectives: annihilating Western forces.
“We lose a lot of people. We lose a lot of equipment. We usually
fail to achieve our objective of preventing aggression by the adversary,”
Over the past decade, the U.S. military has been dramatically transformed,
and not for the better.
But even if our military was in the condition that it should be, we should
still not desire war, because in this day and age weapons of mass destruction
have made full-blown war between major powers absolutely unthinkable.
Revelation 1:3 "Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear, and who keep what is written in it, for the time is near".
Watchman for Christ