Category: The Church

Senate confirms Barrett for U.S. Supreme Court

Trump’s 3rd appointee will secure conservative majority

By WND Staff
Published October 26, 2020 at 6:41pm

When the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg heard arguments in the landmark 2015 same-sex marriage case, the Supreme Court justice signaled her intent to legally redefine the institution.

“Marriage today is not what it was under the common law tradition, under the civil law tradition,” she proclaimed.

After millennia of recognizing marriage as the union of one man and one woman, her vote was one of five that established a “right” to same-sex marriage that Chief Justice John Roberts opined was unconnected to the Constitution.

As an orthodox Catholic, the judge who is filling her seat, Judge Amy Coney Barrett, is a strong defender of traditional marriage. But the majority Republican senators who confirmed her by a vote of 52 to 48 as Ginsburg’s successor Monday night say their support rests on her philosphy of interpreting the Constution as written, according to its original intent, not her personal beliefs.

That’s clearly of concern to Senate Democrats, who will vote unanimously against her, complaining she will rule against their political stances issues such as abortion and health care.

With Roberts siding with the court’s left in some major cases, such as the Obamacare mandate, Barrett’s confirmation secures a majority of justices who reliably rule as originalists.

Justice Clarence Thomas is administering the oath to Barrett, meaning she could begin serving on the high court this week.

Vice President Mike Pence held a campaign event in Hibbing, Minnesota, early Monday, then returned to Washington in case the Senate needed his vote to break a tie on Barrett. The tie never happened.

Barrett’s confirmation marks the third appointment to the high court by President Trump after Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.

“This is something to be really proud of and feel good about,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said Sunday.

He ridiculed “apocalyptic” claims that the judiciary was being caught up in politics.

The Senate voted 51-48 on Sunday to move the nomination to a final vote, one of the last hurdles for the 48-year-old 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals judge.

Norm Coleman, who represented Minnesota in the U.S. Senate, wrote a commentary condemning the “cudgel of religious bigotry”  against Barrett.

“An accomplished woman whose judicial credentials are beyond reproach is not being challenged by Democrats because of her temperament, her intellect or her character – but because of her religious beliefs and how she chooses to practice them in her life,” the former Republican lawmaker wrote.

He said opposition to Barrett’s confirmation has “rapidly devolved into an exercise in defamation.”

Coleman pointed out that during Barrett’s confirmation for the 7th Circuit seat, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., claimed the judge’s faith was a “dogma” that “lives loudly within you, and that’s of concern.”

Further, Sen. Dick Durbin “doubled down with his outrageous willingness to extend Feinstein’s bigotry by asking, ‘Do you consider yourself an orthodox Catholic?'” Coleman said.

The Senate Judiciary Committee recommended her confirmation on a unanimous vote after Democrats refused to attend the meeting.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer complained that the nomination was a “sham” because the GOP-majority Senate in 2016 did not confirm Barack Obama’s last nominee. But Republicans have argued the president is elected for four years and has a duty until he leaves office to send a nomination to the Senate when a Supreme Court vacancy arises.

Feinstein was criticized for imposing an unconstitutional religious test on Barrett when she was nominated for the 7th Circuit, but she did it again during the hearings for the Supreme Court.

The Democrat was caught on an open mic discussing the fact that the judge’s opposition to abortion is based on her Roman Catholic faith.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=11046

Pope Francis endorses same-sex civil unions

‘Homosexual people have the right to be in a family’

By Art Moore
Published October 21, 2020 at 2:16pm


Pope Francis advocated civil unions for same-sex couples for the first time as pope during an interview in a documentary that premiered Wednesday at the Rome Film Festival.

“Homosexual people have the right to be in a family. They are children of God,” Francis said in the biopic “Francesco.”

“What we have to have is a civil union law; that way they are legally covered.”

Francis endorsed civil unions for same-sex couples as an alternative to same-sex marriage while he was an archbishop in his home country of Argentina. But it’s the first time in his papacy he has publicly made the endorsement, the Associated Press reported.

The Rev. James Martin, known for his outreach to gay Catholics, praised the pope’s comments as “a major step forward in the church’s support for LGBT people,” the AP reported.

“The Pope’s speaking positively about civil unions also sends a strong message to places where the church has opposed such laws,” said Martin, the editor of the Jesuit magazine America, in a statement.

In the documentary, Juan Carlos Cruz, a Chilean survivor of clergy sexual abuse, recalled that when Francis first met him in 2018, the pope assured him that God made him gay.

‘Small-minded rules’

In the early months of his papacy in 2013, Francis struck a new tone on issues such as homosexuality, abortion and the role of women.

In an interview in which he declared, “I have never been a right-winger,” he mades it clear that the Roman Catholic Church needed to change the way it communicates with the world.

“The church sometimes has locked itself up in small things, in small-minded rules,” Francis said in an interview for 16 Jesuit publications around the world, including America magazine. “Ministers of the church must be ministers of mercy above all.”

The National Catholic Reporter’s John Allen weighed in at the time as establishment media seized on the pope’s comments on social issues with headlines such as CNN’s “Pope Francis: Church can’t ‘interfere’ with gays.”

Allen insisted “the pope was not breaking with traditional doctrine but trying to shift the church’s emphasis from condemnation to mercy.”

Some U.S. bishops, however, publicly lamented that Francis, the first Jesuit to become pope, had not made strong pronouncements about abortion and homosexuality.

In the 2013 interview, Francis said that when someone once asked him if he “approves” of homosexuality, he answered with another question: “Tell me: when God looks at a gay person, does he endorse the existence of this person with love, or reject and condemn this person?”

Allen contended at the time that when Francis says this, “he’s doing no more than rephrasing the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which denounces homosexual acts but says homosexual persons are to be treated with “respect, compassion and sensitivity.”

In July 2013 during a return flight from Brazil, Francis told reporters that if “someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?”

USA Today declared in a headline: “Pope Francis says he won’t ‘judge’ gay priests”

But, as WND reported at the time, many Catholic commentators insisted Francis remarks were misunderstood or misreported.

“As usual,” wrote National Catholic Register blogger Jimmy Akin, “the press is painting a false picture by contrasting the ‘good’ Francis and the ‘bad’ Benedict.”

Akin insisted that taking his statements together, “what emerges is a portrait of individuals who have same-sex attraction but who nevertheless accept the Lord and have goodwill, as opposed to working to advance a pro-homosexual ideology.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=11028

The Winepress of God’s Wrath and baptism

Exclusive: Scott Lively declares, ‘The imminent Antichrist Kingdom is unstoppable’

By Scott Lively
Published October 12, 2020 at 7:17pm

Christianity has been waning in America for a long time. Christendom is fragmented into a thousand diverse splinters, much of the top leadership of its largest denominations, from Roman Catholicism to the Southern Baptists, has been corrupted with Marxist ideology, and its most liberal denominations have completely abandoned biblical truth in favor of what I call Christian-flavored Secular Humanism. Many signal their subjugation to a false Christ by flying the rainbow flag; others pretend to remain faithful but reject the “meat of the word” for politically correct pablum they spoon-feed to attendees who don’t know the difference because that don’t actually read the Bible, and because their sense of reality has been shaped by leftist public education and the even further leftist corporate media.

By leftist, I mean atheist, because that is the first principle of Marxism: We can be our own gods, just as Satan promised Adam and Eve as their reward for rebellion. Marxism’s religion is humanism, its moral code is political correctness, and its Scriptures are the false narratives it relentlessly preaches. I believe humanism is the final perfection of Satanism, refined over millennia to its most deceptive and seductive form.

It is no surprise that humanism would be the dominant religious theme of this last generation on the threshold of the Antichrist kingdom, especially since its adherents deny it is a religion, thus unifying all the deceived pew-sitters in all the world’s religions and the supposedly “non-religious” together under one banner. Under that banner, the pursuit of “science based” human self-perfection replaces belief that our Creator God actively controls all things according to His own plan. The true definition of atheism is not that one says “there is no God” but that one acts as if whatever God he holds (if any) has no real power or plan. The “Christian” version of this is described in 2 Timothy 3:1-5.

But, as the true God advised Elijah in 1 Kings 19:18, “Nevertheless, I have reserved seven thousand in Israel who have not bowed to Baal.” God always preserves for Himself a remnant. Elijah, fleeing through the wilderness to escape the fierce wrath of Queen Jezebel, had lost hope. Although he had performed great miracles, his world under Ahab and Jezebel grew worse not better.

Every season of wickedness must have its harvest time. As God said to Abraham about the Holy Land that He promised him: “Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a land that is not their own. … You, however, will go to your fathers in peace and … In the fourth generation your descendants will return here, for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet complete.” Their sin had not fully ripened.

Soon, as is warned/promised in Romans 11, the “fullness of the Gentiles will be complete”: the culmination of a season lasting 2,000 years. Then, as Jesus explained in Matthew 13:24-29, there will be a harvest of wheat (the righteous) and tares (the wicked posing as righteous). In my theology, that occurs on Yom Teruah at the start of the 10 Days of Awe/Wrath, when the Bride of Christ begins the event called the Wedding Feast of the Lamb in the spiritual realm. Back on earth during that 10 days, the bowl judgments are poured out as a final effort by God in His mercy to persuade the wicked to repent, but they refuse (Revelation 16:10-11) and instead besiege God’s city, Jerusalem, to destroy it (Zechariah 12). That triggers the great Battle of Armageddon, the salvation of the Torah-faithful Hebrews who were sealed against death by God (Revelation 7:3-8, Zechariah 12:10, and Isaiah 59:18-20 as cited in Romans 11:26) and, finally, the penultimate event of the 10 days, called the Winepress of the Wrath of God (Zechariah 14:1-15). (This is the topic of my seventh installment of “The Prodigal Son Prophecy,” free by email request to scottlivelyministries@gmail.com).

“Swing your sharp sickle and gather the clusters of grapes from the vine of the earth, because its grapes are ripe. So the angel … gathered the grapes of the earth, and he threw them into the great winepress of God’s wrath. And the winepress was trodden outside the city, and the blood that flowed from it rose as high as the bridles of the horses for a distance of [180 miles]” (Revelation 14:18-20). Then Revelation 19:11-21 and Zechariah 14 show how the Winepress event transitions into the grand finale as the King of Kings leads the Host of Heaven through that conquest to claim the earth for His Millennial Kingdom, parting the Mount of Olives for the freshly redeemed Hebrews and Mixed Multitude to escape through, just before He creates a literal Red Sea of blood in thematic parallel to Moses in Exodus 14.

The imminent Antichrist Kingdom is unstoppable. No revivals can prevent it. Truth cannot thwart it once it begins. It must unfold according to prophecy because there must be a harvest of the wicked, and God’s justice must be vindicated by their incorrigible defiance of Him.

What must we of the remnant do as we see that day approaching? The model was set by John the Baptist, whom Jesus identified as an Elijah: he conducted public immersion baptisms, which Jesus insisted on submitting to and later unequivocally commanded in the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19). Baptism is not essential for salvation – which I believe is by faith alone in Christ alone. But it is far more important than the modern church treats it. It is the giant first step of sanctification after one is justified by confession of faith in Christ (itself typically the first step of the baptism ritual).

Infant “baptisms” (a common substitute for the Hebrew ritual of eighth-day infant circumcision) clearly don’t substitute for the immersion baptisms done by John the Baptist and the Apostles, since all or most of their earliest “baptisees” were presumably already circumcised. Instead, Christian baptism is something closer to the Hebrew Mikvah (“cleansing bath”) as a purification ritual, reflecting the deliberate intention to be cleansed from sin. As Paul teaches in Colossians 2:11–12, self-sought baptism accomplishes the spiritual goal of circumcision, but only through the volitional act of “putting off your sinful nature,” which only adults and intellectually mature children are capable of.

I have baptized many people: in the Jordan River, the English Channel, mountain streams, swimming pools and about 30 people one day in the splash pool of an inflatable water slide. In the spirit of Elijah John, I will begin doing more baptisms as open-invitation public events, and I urge other remnant believers to do the same as a way to promote obedience to Christ, revive the church and to signal the urgency of the times.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10997

UNITED NATIONS COMBINING THE WORLD’S LARGEST ABORTION PROVIDERS TO CREATE A UNIFIED GLOBAL NETWORK TO SLAUGHTER CHILDREN AS A ‘HUMAN RIGHT’

The U.N. made the announcement on September 29 to commemorate so-called International Safe Abortion Day, with the stated goal of addressing “unsafe abortion” in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. The partnership, headed by the WHO Department of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Research, will bring together U.N. entities with the world’s largest abortion providers, including the International Planned Parenthood Federation, Ipas, and Marie Stopes International, to promote “comprehensive abortion care,” including access to self-administered telemedicine abortion, as an essential service and a “human right.”

by Geoffrey Gride rOctober 12, 2020

Various elements of the United Nations system, including the World Health Organization, UNICEF, UNFPA, and the World Bank, will partner with abortion groups to advance a “human right” to abortion.

 

Like a scene from the bible, the United Nations is creating a global consortium of abortion providers, demanding that the killing of one’s own baby be elevated to the status of a human right. Even Adolf Hitler, in his wildest fantasies creating factories dedicated to the destruction of human souls, didn’t think this big. Why is this happening now? Because this lost world is preparing themselves to receive Antichrist, that’s why. I mean that literally, by the way, no metaphors here.

“Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently enquired of the wise men. Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, In Rama was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not.” Matthew 2:16-18 (KJB)

The Liberal position on abortion used be that they wanted it to be “rare, safe and legal”, but my how that wheel has turned. Now it is literally an ocean of blood that consumes 3,200 babies every 24 hours in America, 36% of which are black babies, and that’s not all. Both New York and Virginia have already passed laws allowing the babies to be killed on their due date, and even a little after that. This is the true spirit of Antichrist, that murderous, unpitying spirit, that is never satisfied no matter how much blood it receives. But just remember, the bible says that God is the “avenger” of those who trust in Him and cannot defend themselves, and that pay day is not only coming someday, but it’s coming someday very soon.

FUN FACT: Joe Biden and Kamala Harris support due date abortion, and it will become the law of the land under their administration. Not only that, it will be celebrated as “progress and advancement” when in fact it will be a partnership with the Devil himself.

The United Nations Continues Its Abortion Advocacy

FROM YAHOO NEWS: The U.N. made the announcement on September 29 to commemorate so-called International Safe Abortion Day, with the stated goal of addressing “unsafe abortion” in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The partnership, headed by the WHO Department of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Research, will bring together U.N. entities with the world’s largest abortion providers, including the International Planned Parenthood Federation, Ipas, and Marie Stopes International, to promote “comprehensive abortion care,” including access to self-administered telemedicine abortion, as an essential service and a “human right.”

By collaborating on “mitigation strategies” to reduce disruption in abortion access, in addition to “procurement and funding” for abortion services, the goal of the partnership is for Big Abortion and the U.N. to make abortion available and accessible on demand everywhere. The announcement goes so far as to highlight not only young girls but also “those with varying gender identities” as people who should be able to receive “abortion care.”

COOPERATION BETWEEN THE U.N. AND THE ABORTION INDUSTRY IS NOTHING NEW, BUT THE CORONAVIRUS CLIMATE HAS PAVED THE WAY FOR INCREASINGLY BRAZEN AND BIZARRE ALLIANCES. THIS IS A NEW DIRECTION FOR UNICEF AND THE WORLD BANK, FOR EXAMPLE, BOTH OF WHICH TRADITIONALLY HAVE STEERED CLEAR OF OVERT ABORTION ACTIVISM. ALTHOUGH IT’S COMMONPLACE, IT IS ESSENTIAL TO UNDERSCORE THAT U.N. ABORTION PROMOTION IS FUNDAMENTALLY AT ODDS WITH ITS INSTITUTIONAL MANDATE. NATIONAL GOVERNMENTS, NOT THE INTERNATIONAL BUREAUCRACY, SHOULD CHART THE COURSE FOR THE U.N. SYSTEM.

As long as pro-life governments exist — and there are many stalwart pro-life governments — it is inappropriate and illegitimate for the U.N. to unilaterally advance abortion on demand. In fact, the powerful pro-life voice of the United States alone renders the U.N.’s continual promotion of abortion promotion and this new partnership illicit.

As the U.S. recently articulated in a statement to the U.N.: “There is no international right to abortion, nor is there any duty on the part of States to finance or facilitate abortion.” This has been a consistent and frequent stance of the U.S. government, one that has garnered widespread support from countries across the globe.

Even so, the U.N. Secretary General recently identified abortion as central to the U.N.’s COVID-19 response, and the organization’s high commissioner for human rights expressed her support for “safe abortion day.” Similarly, in the partnership announcement, Ian Askew, director of the WHO Department of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Research, states that “eliminating unsafe abortion is one of the key components of the WHO Global reproductive health strategy.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10994

Alarming’: 52 Percent of Evangelical Churchgoers Reject Absolute Moral Truth

Michael Foust | ChristianHeadlines.com Contributor | Wednesday, October 7, 2020

‘ALARMING’: 52 PERCENT OF EVANGELICAL CHURCHGOERS REJECT ABSOLUTE MORAL TRUTH

A slight majority of evangelical churchgoers believe there is no moral absolute truth, while three-quarters think people are “basically good,” according to a new report that its authors call “alarming.”

The poll by the Cultural Research Center (CRC) at Arizona Christian University examined the views of attendees of evangelical, Pentecostal/charismatic, mainline Protestant and Catholic churches on 51 beliefs and behaviors.

Among the findings, the survey discovered that a majority of evangelicals (52 percent), Pentecostals/charismatics (69 percent), mainline Protestants (58) and Catholics (69 percent) say there is no absolute moral truth that applies to everyone, all the time.

On the question of sin, a large majority of evangelicals (75 percent), Pentecostals/charismatics (76 percent), mainline Protestants (81 percent) and Catholics (84 percent) disagree with the statement, “People are not basically good; we are sinners.”

“American Christianity is rapidly conforming to the values of the post-Christian secular culture,” the report’s authors wrote.

Significantly, the survey only examined the beliefs of church attendees, not limiting it to those who have professed certain beliefs or who say they have embraced Christ’s teachings. Still, its findings likely will disturb many within the Christian community.

The survey also found that among evangelical churchgoers:

  • 43 percent believe Jesus sinned.
  • 43 percent do not believe that there is a common, God-given purpose to humanity.
  • 42 percent seek moral guidance primarily from sources other than the Bible.

A news release from the Cultural Research Center (CRC) at Arizona Christian University called the results “alarming for evangelicalism.”

“What makes that trend so significant is that evangelical churches, by definition, teach that the Bible is the authoritative word of God that teaches not only salvation by grace alone but also an array of life principles that are meant to drive one’s thoughts and actions,” CRC said in the release.

George Barna, director of research at the Cultural Research Center, said the data “represents a post-Christian Reformation driven by people seeking to retain a Christian identity.”

“Unfortunately, the theology of this reformation is being driven by American culture rather than biblical truth,” Barna said. “The worldviews embraced by the adherents of these distinct religious communities reflect contemporary, worldly influence, rather than biblical influence.”

The findings are based on a January survey of 2,000 U.S. adults.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10981

REVELATION 18: POPE FRANCIS DEMANDS THAT SUPRANATIONAL BODIES LIKE THE UNITED NATIONS BE GIVEN MORE AUTHORITY TO CONTROL THE WORLD

The work of the United Nations, the pope insists, “can be seen as the development and promotion of the rule of law, based on the realization that justice is an essential condition for achieving the ideal of universal fraternity.” “There is need to prevent this Organization from being delegitimized, since its problems and shortcomings are capable of being jointly addressed and resolved,” he adds.

by Geoffrey Grider October 4, 2020

Pope Francis makes his best case for multilateralism in a new teaching letter, calling for more authority for supranational organizations like the United Nations.

 

I will give Pope Francis credit for one thing, and that is he constantly continues to prove me right when I make the connection between the Vatican and Revelation 17 and 18. What do we see when we read those sections of our King James Bibles? We see a multi-headed beast that a woman rides, the ‘holy mother’ church, and it is both a religious system of control as well as a political system of control. And we see one man in charge of both. Jorge Bergoglio rules as Pope Francis over the Roman Catholic Church, and he is the king over the Holy See, the legally recognized government of the Vatican.

“And the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her, shall bewail her, and lament for her, when they shall see the smoke of her burning, Standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighty city! for in one hour is thy judgment come.” Revelation 18:9,10 (KJB)

Pope Francis hates free and open societies that run on the free and fair exchange of goods and services created by the private sector, what we call capitalism.  The AP reports that “Pope Francis says the coronavirus pandemic has proven that the “magic theories” of market capitalism have failed and that the world needs a new type of politics that promotes dialogue and solidarity and rejects war at all costs.” Yes, and replace it with what? Socialism? Communism? What system would the Jesuit Socialist from Argentina prefer? Hmm…

If you’re fooled by this end times dog and pony show it’s only because you’re either saved and so backslidden you never read your bible, or you’re unsaved and headed for a devil’s Hell with Jorge Bergoglio. Why don’t you take a moment, admit you’re a sinner, and ask the Lord to save you? Eternity is far too long a time period to spend it burning in Hell alongside every pope the Roman Catholic Church ever produced.

THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH AND ITS VATICAN SYSTEM IS ABSOLUTELY THE WHORE OF BABYLON

Pope Francis Calls for Giving United Nations Organization ‘Real Teeth’ To Control The Entire World

FROM BREITBART NEWS: “The twenty-first century is witnessing a weakening of the power of nation states, chiefly because the economic and financial sectors, being transnational, tend to prevail over the political,” the pope writes in the encyclical letter Fratelli Tutti (Brothers All), released on Sunday.

“GIVEN THIS SITUATION, IT IS ESSENTIAL TO DEVISE STRONGER AND MORE EFFICIENTLY ORGANIZED INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTIONS, WITH FUNCTIONARIES WHO ARE APPOINTED FAIRLY BY AGREEMENT AMONG NATIONAL GOVERNMENTS, AND EMPOWERED TO IMPOSE SANCTIONS,” THE POPE ADVISES IN THE 43,000-WORD TEXT.

“When we talk about the possibility of some form of world authority regulated by law, we need not necessarily think of a personal authority,” the pontiff asserts. “Still, such an authority ought at least to promote more effective world organizations, equipped with the power to provide for the global common good, the elimination of hunger and poverty and the sure defence of fundamental human rights.”

Among the possible candidates for such a role, the pope turns his attention to the United Nations Organization, with which he enjoys close ties.

“IN THIS REGARD, I WOULD ALSO NOTE THE NEED FOR A REFORM OF THE UNITED NATIONS ORGANIZATION, AND LIKEWISE OF ECONOMIC INSTITUTIONS AND INTERNATIONAL FINANCE, SO THAT THE CONCEPT OF THE FAMILY OF NATIONS CAN ACQUIRE REAL TEETH,” FRANCIS DECLARES, CITING A TEXT FROM HIS PREDECESSOR, POPE BENEDICT XVI.

“Needless to say, this calls for clear legal limits to avoid power being co-opted only by a few countries and to prevent cultural impositions or a restriction of the basic freedoms of weaker nations on the basis of ideological differences,” he writes.

The work of the United Nations, the pope insists, “can be seen as the development and promotion of the rule of law, based on the realization that justice is an essential condition for achieving the ideal of universal fraternity.”

“THERE IS NEED TO PREVENT THIS ORGANIZATION FROM BEING DELEGITIMIZED, SINCE ITS PROBLEMS AND SHORTCOMINGS ARE CAPABLE OF BEING JOINTLY ADDRESSED AND RESOLVED,” HE ADDS.

“The seventy-five years since the establishment of the United Nations and the experience of the first twenty years of this millennium have shown that the full application of international norms proves truly effective, and that failure to comply with them is detrimental,” Francis states.

The Charter of the United Nations is “an obligatory reference point of justice and a channel of peace,” he declares, and thus “there can be no room for disguising false intentions or placing the partisan interests of one country or group above the global common good.”

Among the normative instruments for the peaceful resolution of controversies, “preference should be given to multilateral agreements between states, because, more than bilateral agreements, they guarantee the promotion of a truly universal common good and the protection of weaker states,” he declares.At the same time, Pope Francis notes certain “shortcomings” of the international community, including “its lack of coordination in complex situations, its lack of attention to fundamental human rights and to the critical needs of certain groups.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10974

Prophecy from the Zohar on Messiah’s Arrival

Widely considered the most important work of Jewish Kabbalah, the Zohar is a collection of books written in medieval Aramaic over seven hundred years ago containing mystical commentary on the Pentateuch (five books of Moses, the Torah). In addition to interpreting Scripture, the Vaera section (volume 3, section 34) includes, “The signs heralding Mashiach,” or, “The coming of the Messiah.” The fascinating date for “his” secret presentation to the rabbis in Israel was set in the Zohar for 2012–2013 [given the rejection of Jesus by Orthodox Jews as Messiah, evangelicals would say this seven-hundred-year-old prediction indicates the Antichrist could have arrived circa 2012–2013].

And, sure enough, on the heels of that date some of Israel’s foremost rabbis began behaving as if they know something the rest of the world does not involving the arrival of “Messiah.” In addition to the ones I quoted earlier in this chapter who believe the Messianic era has started, Chaim Kanievsky, one of Israel’s most prominent rabbis and a leader of the Haredi branch of Judaism and a recognized authority on Jewish law, has recently been warning his students not to leave the Holy Land, because, “The Messiah is already here. He will reveal himself very soon…. Don’t travel.”[ii]

These same rabbis starting in 2016 began using “messianic” and “Third Temple” language around the election of Donald Trump.

The Eight-Hundred-Year-Old Prophecy of Rabbi Judah Ben Samuel

Will the years immediately following 2016 be prophetically important for Israel and the world? According to an eight-hundred-year-old prophecy, it certainly could. Before he died of cancer, J. R. Church analyzed the ancient predictions of Rabbi Judah Ben Samuel and noted:

Ludwig Schneider, writing for Israel Today (March 2008), said, “Some 800 years ago in Germany, Rabbi Judah Ben Samuel was a top Talmudic scholar with an inclination for the mystical. Before he died in the year 1217, he prophesied that the Ottoman Turks would conquer Jerusalem and rule the Holy City for ‘eight Jubilee Years.’” A biblical Jubilee year consists of 50 years. Fifty multiplied by eight equals 400 years.

Afterwards, according to Ben Samuel, the Ottomans would be driven out of Jerusalem, which would remain a no-man’s land for one Jubilee year. In the tenth Jubilee year [2017]…the Messianic end times would begin.…

Looking back at Ben Samuel’s prediction, we should note that the Ottoman Empire did conquer Jerusalem in 1517, exactly 300 years after the rabbi’s death, and was defeated 400 years later in 1917.

In Israel Today, Ludwig Schneider continues, “This came to pass 300 years after Ben Samuel’s death. He could not have based this prophecy on events that could be foreseen, but only on the results of his study of the Bible.

“According to Leviticus 25, the nation is reunited with its land in the year of Jubilee. Therefore, the Jubilee year plays an important role in Israel’s history. In this case, the Jubilee began with the defeat and conquest of the Mamelukes in Jerusalem by the Ottoman Kingdom in 1517. The Turks reigned over Jerusalem until the British General Edmund Allenby defeated them exactly eight Jubilees later in 1917.

“Ben Samuel’s prophecy was fulfilled precisely because 1517 to 1917 is exactly 400 years. Afterward, Jerusalem was a no-man’s land for 50 years during the time of the British Mandate (1917–1967) and the time of Jordanian rule (1947–1967), another Jubilee year. During the Six Day War in 1967, Israel captured Jerusalem from Jordan and the city returned to the Jewish people after nearly two millennia of exile. After that, the countdown for the Messianic age began.”

Schneider assumes that since Rabbi Judah Ben Samuel’s prediction appears to be fulfilled to date, then 2017 should launch the beginning of the Messianic era.[iii]

Protestant Reformers and What They Believed Would Start In 2016

 

Among the turn-of-the-century Protestant reformers, an astonishing number of theologians believed that the False Prophet and Antichrist would assume places of authority in 2016 and shortly thereafter ascend the world stage. The famous preacher Jonathan Edwards was convinced of this possibility and held a postmillennial view based on the 1,260 days the woman is in the wilderness in Revelation 12:6. He interpreted those days as the years that the true Church was to be oppressed by the papists. Clarence Goen writes of this, “Edwards considered that the most likely time for the…reign of Antichrist was 1260 years after AD 756 (the acceding of temporal power to the Pope),”[iv] which would place the (beginning) of Antichrist’s power squarely in 2016. When we were doing research for the book, Petrus Romanus: The Final Pope Is Here, we learned of this belief by Edwards and sought to verify it by examining a collection of his personal voluminous writings. We found confirmation within a series of his sermons, preached at Northampton, Massachusetts, in 1739, on how history and prophecy coincide.

As we endeavored to demonstrate in Petrus Romanus, the pope’s rise to temporal power began when Pope Stephen began courting Pepin around 751 and then became a reality in 756 with the expulsion of the Lombards. We wrote how 756 placed the target sometime in 2016.

Around that same time during our investigation, we became aware of a sermon collection from the 1800s, titled, “Lectures on the Revelation,” by the Reverend William J. Reid, pastor of First United Presbyterian Church in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, which were given over a period ending in March of 1876. Like Jonathan Edwards had over a hundred years earlier, Reid deduced that the False Prophet and Antichrist would arrive sometime around 2016.

Soon we uncovered numerous other ancient examples in which the year 2016 was specifically foreseen as when the False Prophet and the Antichrist would be on earth, followed by the destruction of Rome. These included:

  • The Theological Dictionary of Princeton University (1830)
  • Critical Commentary and Paraphrase on the Old and New Testament by Lowth and Lowman (1822)
  • The American Biblical Repository (1840)
  • Notes on the Revelation of St. John by Lowman (1773)
  • The Christian Spectator, “The Monthly” (1885)
  • Abridgement of Ecclesiastical History (1776)
  • The Works of the Rev. P. Doddridge, DD (1804)
  • The International Sunday School Lessons Pub (1878)
  • Character and Prospects on the Church of Rome in Two Discourses by the Rev. William Mackray (1829)
  • The Panoplist and Missionary Magazine (1809)
  • Lectures on Romanism by Joseph F. Berg (1840)
  • The Congregational Magazine for the Year (1834)
  • The Presbyterian Magazine (1858)

The complete list of ancients who believed 2016 pointed to the year when Antichrist would begin making himself known on the global scene and initiate a process ultimately leading to construction of the Third Temple as well as the Great Tribulation period can be found in the book Zenith 2016.

Whether this will turn out to be connected to Donald Trump and the rabbis’ view of him as a modern Cyrus whose arrival heralds the Messianic era during which the Temple will be built is increasingly convincing, as following entries will hopefully convey.

Behind the Scenes: Players and a Plan

 

Before Trump’s UAE-Israel peace deal began change of the status quo on the Temple Mount, in a fantastically liberal feature by Kerry Bolton for Foreign Policy Journal titled “US Recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s Capital: A Travesty of History,” the president’s son-in-law Jared Kushner was depicted as an arch-Zionist Jew that, along with Donald Trump and his evangelical advisors, view the USA and Israel as synonymous in terms of policy objectives and prophetic destiny.[v]

Bolton’s increasingly familiar animosity toward evangelicals and their biblical mandate to be a blessing to Israel results in his lament that “the Zionist dream for Palestine is based on three primary aims that are of messianic intent: (1) Greater Israel from the Nile to the Euphrates rivers, (2) Rebuilding of the Temple of Solomon on the site of the present al-Aqsa mosque, (3) Jerusalem not only as the capital of Israel, but as the central seat of universal law.”[vi] He then quotes the Temple Mount Faithful’s website, which confirms:

Consecrating the Temple Mount to the Name of G‑d so that it can become the moral and spiritual center of Israel, of the Jewish people, and of the entire world according to the words of all the Hebrew prophets. It is envisioned that the consecration of the Temple Mount and the Temple itself will focus Israel on:

(a) fulfilling the vision and mission given at Mt. Sinai for Israel to be a chosen people separate unto G‑d, a holy nation, and a nation of priests (Exodus 19:6), and

(b) becoming a light unto all the nations (Isaiah 42:6) so that the Name of G‑d may be revered by all nations and the biblical way of life may be propagated throughout the world.[vii]

Bolton concludes: “Regardless of what any Israeli government states, these are the ultimate objectives which messianic Zionists believe are ordained by their God. They will never be relinquished.” For example, the first prime minister of Israel, David Ben Gurion, a “moderate” and a socialist, asked by Look to describe his vision of the future, alluded to this:

In Jerusalem, the United Nations (a truly United Nations) will build a shrine of the prophets to serve the federated union of all continents; this will be the seat of the Supreme Court of Mankind, to settle all controversies among the federated continents, as prophesied by Isaiah.[viii]

Other secular writers appear similarly suspicious that Trump recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and moving the US embassy there and the more recent “peace deal” extends end-times “messaging” to his conservative Christian base, which has not gone unnoticed by the appropriate members of his audience. Enlisting the well-known craft of “actions in place of words,” the president is viewed as encouraging his compatriots in Armageddon-planning to probe beneath the surface of his exploits where, sotto voce (“under voice”), he is telling them he understands and sympathizes with their eschatological worldview and that, when the time is right, he will offer full-throated voice in support of the Third Temple.

Nancy LeTourneau for the Washington Monthly suspects as much too, writing: “The most obvious gesture he’s made towards Israel since he became president was to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem. That was targeted at his base of support among white evangelicals, and it isn’t because they have so much affection for Jews.” LeTourneau cited what Diana Butler Bass, a theologian, wrote:

For decades, conservative evangelicals have been longing for this recognition. They believe it is necessary in order to regain control of the Temple mount. That is important because rebuilding the Temple is the event that will spark the events of the Book of Revelation and the End Times.… They’ve been waiting for this, praying for this. They want war in the Middle East. The Battle of Armageddon, at which time Jesus Christ will return to the Earth and vanquish all God’s enemies. For certain evangelicals, this is the climax of history. And Trump is taking them there. To the promised judgment, to their sure victory. The righteous will be ushered to heaven; the reprobate will be banished to hellfire.[ix]

Let me take a moment to make issue with LeTourneau and Bass, as I’ve been at the center of mainstream evangelical Christianity for five decades and have been blessed to personally know many leading prophecy scholars and theologians, and have yet to meet a single one who wants “war in the Middle East. The Battle of Armageddon, at which time Jesus Christ will return to the Earth and vanquish all God’s enemies.” We simply believe what Jesus taught, that “when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh” (Luke 21:28). Movement toward the construction of a Third Temple could signal the imminent return of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and that is what we “want.” While the objectives listed by the antagonists above do reflect some of the accomplishments many Jews and Christians anticipate, it is not for the reasons they insinuate, as they obviously don’t seem to comprehend the “blessed hope” Christians have for the Second Coming of Jesus, which a Third Temple could signal, or that which Jews have for their final redemption and Messianic era.

Having said that, any successful attempt at garnering support for a reconstructed Temple in Jerusalem will indeed require enough multicultural and international support. Thus, prejudices by Bolton and the other writers quoted above aside, their feelings about behind-the-scenes discussions and deals that could witness the materialization of a Third Temple is warranted, and, in this writers’ opinion, they certainly should be suspicious that a plan is under consideration wherein international players are quietly moving chess pieces clandestinely toward a sooner-than-later realization of a rebuilt Temple.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10959

Another Potential Entanglement for the Turkish Military

BY MARK DAVIDSON on SEPTEMBER 28, 2020 • ( 0 )

Today is Monday, September 28, 2020. It is Day 264 of the grace period declared by one of the kings of the Medes and Persians, the supreme leader. of Iran.

If the north push of the Persian Ram takes the IRGC forces into eastern Turkish territory, how much resistance might it find there?

One clue we have in Daniel 8:7 that the IRGC may very well be occupying Turkish territory is the use of the word “enraged.” That word means to be personally embittered. The same word was used to describe Esau’s feelings toward Jacob after being cheated of his birthright. A Sunni Muslim leader would be enraged that a Shia Muslim military was invading his territory.

In an earlier post it was shown that the Turkish military, though formidable, might be tied down in part facing the Russian military in a regional conflict at the time the Second Signpost begins.

Albania versus Serbia is one potential conflict, in which Turkey could become tied down, facing Russian troops.

Libya is another.

Now we may have a third regional conflict that might tie down the Turkish military against Russia. Conflict between Christian Armenia and Muslim Azerbaijan has exploded in recent days.

Turkey supports Azerbaijan, while Armenia has a military agreement with Russia.

The fight involves Nagorno-Karabakh, a region of Azerbaijan peopled mostly with Armenians. Nagorno has been attempting to break away from Azerbaijan, and Armenia has been helping them. Of course, Azerbaijan wants their territory back.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10956

Separate mass gatherings led by Franklin Graham, Jonathan Cahn converge

National Mall the site this Saturday of ‘Prayer March’ and ‘solemn assembly’

By Art Moore
Published September 23, 2020 at 7:

Two separate mass gatherings calling for prayer for the nation will take place Saturday on the National Mall in Washington.

The “Washington Prayer March 2020,” will be led by evangelist Franklin Graham, and “The Return — National and Global Day of Prayer and Repentance,” by Jonathan Cahn, the Messianic rabbi known for his New York Times bestsellers, including “The Harbinger.”

Graham and Cahn both say God led them separately to call for the mass assemblies, CBN News reported.

“God is converging everything. That’s how important this day is,” Cahn told CBN.

“The Return” will take place from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern Time between the Washington Monument and the Capitol building. At noon Eastern, the prayer march will begin at the Lincoln Memorial, stopping for focused prayer at sites on the National Mall.

In addition, as WND reported, Focus on the Family is holding a virtual pro-life event called “See Life 2020” at 8 p.m. Eastern Time on Saturday night that can be viewed here.

In an interview last week with WND, Cahn pointed to another crucial time in America, during the Civil War, when Abraham Lincoln declared a solemn assembly “and it changed the course of history.”

“We are at a more dangerous point than ever. We have an election that can change the course of the nation at such a time when so many signs are pointing to danger of judgment,” he told WND.

“I believe that if we do not rise to this now, here, embodied by the return, we may pass the point of no return. That’s why I’m calling on any believer who has any kind of burden for America to join, whether they come to Washington or wherever they are.

“But we need to do this as never before.”

In a promotion for the march, Graham said the country “is in trouble” and the “only hope for America is God.”

“We’re coming to pray. And I’m just asking people to join me,” he said.

“Let’s fill this city with people who are willing to pray for this country, to pray for the president, to pray for all of our leaders, Democrat and Republican.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10943

Franklin Graham warns socialist left will ‘close the Church down’: ‘The storm is coming’

By Ryan Foley, Contributor FOLLOW| Monday, August 31, 2020

Prominent evangelical leader Franklin Graham says that the Democratic Party is “opposed to faith” and warns that the left will “close the Church down in many places” should the United States fall into the embrace of socialism. 

Graham, the president of Samaritan’s Purse and the son of famed evangelist Billy Graham, sat down with CBN News correspondent David Brody last Friday to discuss the Democratic and Republican conventions that took place over the past two weeks.

He also discussed his upcoming Washington Prayer March that will take place at the end of September in Washington, D.C.

“The Democrats, if anything, they are opposed to faith,” Graham asserted after being asked to compare and contrast the major parties’ positions on faith. 

“The Democrats have taken God pretty much … out of government,” he added, later stating that the changes that “the left want to make and take us into socialism is going to affect the Church.”

“The government will … begin to tell the Church how [it] can be the Church and they’ll close the Church down in many places,” Graham warned. “We see right now because of COVID, the government trying to tell the Church that they can not meet and the Constitution gives us that freedom to do that. But because of COVID, they said we can’t meet.” 

The 68-year-old praised President Donald Trump as being someone who “wants to see more of God here in Washington.” 

The outspoken evangelist assured that there are millions of Democrats who are “wonderful people” and stated that his father was a lifelong Democrat who “never switched parties.” 

He argued that his dad “saw the party that he grew up in changing and moving to the left.” 

“That’s what it’s done,” Graham contended. “The Democratic Party today is a party of the left. It’s a socialist party, they want socialism for this country.”

Considering that some believe Trump was anointed to the presidency by God, Graham was asked what it would mean if the Democrats win on Nov. 3. 

“I think God brought him here for this season — for these for years,” Graham explained. “I am just asking that God would spare this country, for another four years, to give us a little bit more time to do the work before the storm hits. I believe the storm is coming.” 

“You are going to see Christians attacked, you are going to see churches close and you are going to see a real hatred expressed toward people of faith. That is coming,” Graham continued. “Jesus told us. He said, ‘You will be hated by all people because of me.’ And if we are going to stand for the name of Christ, the world will hate us.” 

Graham had previously spoken about the “absence of God” at the Democratic National Convention in a Facebook post. 

Shortly after Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden announced Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., as his running mate, Graham called the “the most pro-abortion presidential ticket in the history of our nation” a source of “great concern to all Christians.”

This is not the first time that Graham has issued dire warnings about socialism taking hold in the U.S. 

Earlier this year, Graham took to Twitter to warn about “all-out socialism” taking hold in the U.S. if Americans did not vote for leaders who “love this country, defend the Constitution, & support law & order” in the upcoming election.

Graham told to Brody that “the only hope for this country is God.”

“Donald Trump can’t turn it around,” Graham stressed. “Biden isn’t going to turn it around. Only God can do this … and we need God’s help.”

Graham’s daughter, Cissie Graham Lynch, made similar warnings during a speech at the Republican National Convention last week, asserting that the Democratic Party has “no room for people of faith.” 

“They will force the choice between being obedient to God or to Caesar,” she warned. “The radical left’s God is government power.”

Graham’s niece, Jerushah Duford, an evangelical author, speaker and member of the NeverTrump Republican group Lincoln Project, accused evangelicals who support Trump of “failing the Gospel” in a USA Today op-ed last week. 

“I have spent my entire life in the hurch, with every big decision guided by my faith. But now, I feel homeless. Like so many others, I feel disoriented as I watch the church I have always served turn their eyes away from everything it teaches,” Duford wrote. “I hear from Christian women on a daily basis who all describe the same thing: a tug at their spirit.”

“I feel it every time our president talks about government housing having no place in America’s suburbs,” she added. “Jesus said repeatedly to defend the poor and show kindness and compassion to those in need. Our president continues to perpetuate an us-versus-them narrative, yet almost all of our church leaders say nothing.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10880