Archive for July, 2014

Trend Update: Temple/9th of Av, July 2014

Posted in Gospel, Prophecy, Temple, Trend Update with tags , , , , , , , on July 30, 2014 by paulthepoke

Tisha b’Av:  to the Jew, this is a date, the 9th of Av. Av is a Hebrew month. It is the 11th month of the civil calendar or the 5th month of the religious calendar. It usually occurs during July or August in the Gregorian calendar. This year, the 9th of Av begins at sunset on August 4th, 2014.  The month is not named in the Bible.

http://www.Torahcalendar.com has an interesting observation. It is of great interest to note that the believers who followed the Messiah never used pagan names to describe Hebrew Months. They were well taught by the Master and simply numbered the Hebrew Months as Adam and Noah did from the beginning.

The 9th of Av is a day of mourning in Israel. This came about because of the account of Numbers 13-14. This event occurred immediately after God had delivered Israel out of bondage in Egypt. The short story is the Lord told Moses to send a group of spies to go scout the Promised Land. The spies came back and proclaimed the Jews could not take the land because of the inhabitants of the land were too big and too strong. The people rebelled against Moses. The people stated they would rather go back to Egypt. The nation (except Caleb and Joshua) did not believe God to give them the Promised Land. We know it occurred during the grape harvest per the text (Numbers 13:20). This event is said to have occurred on the 9th of Av. God pronounced judgment on the nation at that time. And this date is said to be a reminder of nation Israel’s lack of faith in God.

Here is a list of Jewish history on the 9th of Av.

  1. 586 BC, the first Temple was destroyed.
  2. 70 AD, the second Temple was destroyed.
  3. 135 AD, Betar fell. It was the last fortress to hold out against the Romans during the Bar Kochba revolt.
  4. 136 AD, one year after the fall of Betar, the Temple area was plowed.
  5. 1290 AD, Jews were expelled from England.
  6. 1492 AD, King Ferdinand of Spain issued the expulsion decree, setting Tisha B’Av as the final date by which not a single Jew would be allowed to walk on Spanish soil.
  7. 1914 AD, World War I began the downward slide to the Holocaust.

References for dates courtesy of (http://www.jewfaq.org, http://www.chabad.org, https://www.templeinstitute.org).

The Jewish people remember this day every year. They have traditions for the memorial.

On July 27, 2014, the Temple Institute released a video on Youtube. They believe the time is now to rebuild the third Temple. Since  July of 2012, the Temple Institute has released a video every year connecting the rebuilding of the third Temple with the 9th of Av.  In July of 2012, Rabbi Chaim Richman says the purpose of the video “is an attempt to positively refocus people’s attention during the period of the Nine Days and Tisha B’Av.” The focus is to consider what is missing without the Temple. Here is a link to the latest video.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B6C_zfpEwUI

Remember, these Jews do not believe in “that man”, Jesus. They do not read or believe the New Testament let alone the book of Revelation. This group is not affiliated with Jews for Jesus. Yet, here we area. All they had to do was believe God. All that is required of us is to believe in Jesus’ payment for our failure to meet the standard.

Rapture of the Church, When, Part 3

Posted in Gospel, Prophecy, Rapture with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 27, 2014 by paulthepoke

The church is told consistently in the New Testament it is not appointed for wrath. 1 Thessalonians 1:10 …and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, that is Jesus, who rescues us from the wrath to come.

Jesus Himself said the Gates of Hell will not have victory of the Church. Matthew 16:18 I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it. But, Hell will have victory over the Tribulation saints. Revelation 13:7 It was also given to him (Antichrist/Beast) to make war with the saints and to overcome them, and authority over every tribe and people and tongue and nation was given to him. This group of believers in Revelation 13 is not the church. The church is already in Heaven in Revelation 4. I have no doubt there will be an “OH $#!T” moment for those left behind when the rapture occurs. A lot of people will come to believe in God and His word at this event. I take it these are the tribulation saints and believers in Revelation 13.

1 Thessalonians 5:9 For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. The group of people being addressed in this letter is believers in Christ in the church. Believers are not destined for wrath as compared to the group of people who are not believers. 1 Thessalonians 5:3 While they are saying, “Peace and safety!” then destruction will come upon them suddenly like labor pains upon a woman with child, and they will not escape. Nonbelievers are subjected to destruction. There is no escape.

Romans 8:1 Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. The Greek word for condemnation is katakrima (a damnatory sentence per Strong’s Concordance). The letter is written to the church, the body of Christ, in Rome.

God has a history of removing His people before executing judgment.

The first global judgment of the flood provides a pattern. God announces judgment is coming to all. Enoch was removed from the earth before the flood (Genesis 5). The world was judged. God’s chosen people were preserved in Noah’s ark.

Approximately 13% of the Bible talks about the seven year tribulation. The rapture of the church removes believers in Christ from judgment. The world is judged in seven years. God preserves His chosen people Israel.

Lot and his daughters were removed from Sodom and Gomorrah before its destruction. God made it clear to Abraham He would not destroy the two cities if even one righteous person was there (Genesis 18-19). God cannot change His character. He would not execute judgment on a world with one righteous, believing person. But with the rapture, righteous people have been removed. The path has been cleared and He would not violate His principle.

Jesus has already died for sin once and for all. Did He not do a complete job on the cross? As believers in Christ, we are sealed with the Holy Spirit. The church is covered by God (Father, Son, and Spirit). 1 John 4:17 By this, love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is, so also are we in this world.

Trend Update: China, Another Blood Red River, July 2014

Posted in Blood Red Water/Aquatic Death, Prophecy with tags , , , , on July 25, 2014 by paulthepoke

Revelation 16:4 Then the third angel poured out his bowl into the rivers and the springs of waters; and they became blood.

Granted, this verse is late in the order of the seven year Tribulation. The scope and scale is all of the rivers and springs. This event in China is not the fulfillment of Revelation16:4. Let’s just get that out of the way.

The Greek word for blood is haima. It literally means blood or figuratively it means the color of blood. This definition is validated in multiple Greek lexicons.

chinaredriver

A previous incident was noted in September of 2012 with China and a red river. Australia had an algae bloom which resulted in red tides on an ocean front beach in late November of 2012. This incident popped up over night in July of 2014. See the patch from ABC’s Good Morning America for the details.

http://abcnews.go.com/International/river-china-mysteriously-turns-bloody-red-overnight/story?id=24715670

The Bible says this will happen on a much larger scale at some point in the future. Just a little preview…

 

Trend Update: Assyrian Empire/Nineveh/Jonah, July 2014

Posted in Mosul/Nineveh, Prophecy, Trend Update with tags , , , on July 25, 2014 by paulthepoke

I guess a sledgehammer did not do enough damage. Jonah’s tomb was blown up.

http://news.yahoo.com/video-shows-isis-blowing-iraqs-tomb-jonah-161117640.html;_ylt=AwrSyCVsitJT_SMAsI_QtDMD

Paul the Poke

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2685923/Shocking-moment-ISIS-militants-sledgehammers-Mosul-tomb-Prophet-Jonah-50-blindfolded-bodies-massacred-south-Baghdad.html

To the critic who says Jonah was not a real person, ISIS and Muslims disagree with you. Jonah was a prophet and a real human being in the Old Testament who died. This is what ISIS thinks of Jonah. They are destroying his remains. They want to remove and delete as though he never happened or existed. ISIS militants believe giving special veneration to tombs and relics is against the teachings of Islam. The Book of Jonah is about a prophet who was called to warn a foreign country, an enemy of Israel, of God’s coming judgment. The people of Nineveh responded to the prophet’s call during their day and changed their minds and ways as a nation. God’s judgment was spared on that generation in Nineveh. The Book of Jonah demonstrates God’s mercy and grace to a nation who was behaving in a destructive and brutal nature.

Jesus Himself…

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Rapture of the Bride of Christ, When, Part 2

Posted in Gospel, Isaiah, Prophecy, Rapture with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 21, 2014 by paulthepoke

When looking at the course of an Ancient Jewish wedding, Jesus is following cultural custom. A Jewish man has to make an offer to purchase or buy his bride to be. Jesus has met this obligation with Acts 28:20b …to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. Gifts are usually offered from the groom to the bride. In the case of the church, we receive the gift of eternal life from the groom. Romans 6:23b …but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. The marriage involved the drawing up and the acceptance of a legal contract called a ketubah. During the betrothal or the promise of the coming marriage, it is the groom’s duty to prepare a home for his pending bride. John 14:2-3 “In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.” According to Jewish custom, the Father of the groom decides when the house is ready. The Father sets the wedding date. He tells his son when it is time to go get his bride. A Jewish groom goes and gets his bride, an event of a Jewish wedding ceremony. The rapture of the church is when Jesus comes and takes His bride. Ephesians 5:22-33 Draws parallels between Christ (husband) and the church (bride/wife). Jesus’ relationship to the church is as a husband is to a wife. Specifically, Ephesians 5:32 This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church.

There is more to the wedding in regards to bride’s response and the ceremony itself. The context and focus are how the rapture fits into the wedding. Jewish cultural information provided by The New Manners and Customs of Bible Times, God’s Final Jubilee by Dan Goodwin, Our Father Abraham Jewish Roots of the Christian Faith by Marvin R. Wilson, The Truth Behind Left Behind by Mark Hitchcock and Thomas Ice.

Jesus is speaking in Revelation 3:10 and states “Because you have kept the word of My perseverance, I also will keep you from the hour of testing, that hour which is about to come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. I am coming quickly; hold fast what you have, so that no one will take your crown.” It is members of the church who receive crowns. We give them back to Jesus. The crowns are on the heads of the elders. They are wearing white, purified and cleansed robes in Heaven (not on Earth) in Revelation 4 before start of the tribulation. Later in Chapter 4 of Revelation, the crowns are thrown before the throne in Heaven, not on Earth. These events take place in Heaven before the Tribulation. How did the church get into Heaven before the Tribulation? Rapture. All hell breaks loose on Earth with the Tribulation starting in Revelation 6. The church is absent in the Revelation 6-18 text during all of the destruction on Earth.

Jesus is taking His bride out of harm’s way. The church is safe in Heaven’s bridal chamber preparing for a wedding. Isaiah 26:20-21 Come, my people, enter into your rooms and close your doors behind you; hide for a little while until indignation runs its course. For behold, the LORD is about to come out from His place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity; and the earth will reveal her bloodshed and will no longer cover her slain. The previous context of these verses in Isaiah is the resurrection of the dead…

Psalm 27:5 For in the day of trouble He will conceal me in His tabernacle; In the secret place of His tent He will hide me; He will lift me up on a rock.

Trend Update: Assyrian Empire/Nineveh/Jonah, July 2014

Posted in Gospel, Mosul/Nineveh, Prophecy, Trend Update with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 16, 2014 by paulthepoke

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2685923/Shocking-moment-ISIS-militants-sledgehammers-Mosul-tomb-Prophet-Jonah-50-blindfolded-bodies-massacred-south-Baghdad.html

To the critic who says Jonah was not a real person, ISIS and Muslims disagree with you. Jonah was a prophet and a real human being in the Old Testament who died. This is what ISIS thinks of Jonah. They are destroying his remains. They want to remove and delete as though he never happened or existed. ISIS militants believe giving special veneration to tombs and relics is against the teachings of Islam. The Book of Jonah is about a prophet who was called to warn a foreign country, an enemy of Israel, of God’s coming judgment. The people of Nineveh responded to the prophet’s call during their day and changed their minds and ways as a nation. God’s judgment was spared on that generation in Nineveh. The Book of Jonah demonstrates God’s mercy and grace to a nation who was behaving in a destructive and brutal nature.

Jesus Himself points to Jonah as a sign or a shadow of His death, burial, and resurrection. Matthew 12:39-41 But He answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation craves for a sign; and yet no sign will be given to it but the sign of Jonah the prophet; for just as JONAH WAS THREE DAYS AND THREENIGHTS IN THE BELLY OF THE SEA MONSTER, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. The men of Nineveh will stand up with this generation at the judgment, and will condemn it because they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and behold, something greater than Jonah is here.

2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.

That “any” includes terrorists. Even terrorists can avoid eternal judgment in Christ. We are all made in God’s image (Genesis 1:26).

What does it mean to repent? It is the Greek word “metanoia”. Per Strong’s Concordance it means: to change one’s mind, compunction (for guilt, including reformation); by implication, reversal of decision.

Things do not have to continue on their current path. We have the capacity to change our minds as individuals and corporately as humanity.

Rapture of the Church, When, Part 1

Posted in Gospel, Prophecy, Rapture with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 13, 2014 by paulthepoke

There are primarily three perspectives in regards to the time when the rapture of the church occurs. The first is called a Pre Tribulation Rapture (rapture before). The second is called a Mid Tribulation Rapture (rapture in the middle). And the third is a Post Tribulation Rapture (rapture after). These three perspectives are hotly contested, debated, and divisive. The discussion of “when” this event takes place has no bearing on one’s salvation. People who hold to any of these positions believe that Christ died for sins, resurrected…Heaven bound. All three positions are members of the body of Christ. A pastor I know has made a common sense statement. “Good men can respectfully disagree.”

I will be up front. I hold to a Pre Tribulation Rapture position. This is the conclusion I have come to after reading and re reading the text over a period of 20 plus years. I am not telling anybody what to think. I am not telling anybody they are wrong. Dogmatism in opinion solves nothing. Because somebody stomps their foot harder and yells louder does not result in a change of mind and thinking.

Be a Berean. Acts 17:11 Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so. Do not take my word or anybody else’s word. Search, read, study. There is too much at stake, your eternal future.

What is the church? The Greek word for “church” is ekklesia. Per Strong’s Concordance it is translated or defined as: a gathering of citizens called out from their homes into some public place, an assembly; an assembly of Christians gathered for worship in a religious meeting; those who anywhere, in a city, village, constitute such a company and are united into one body; the whole body of Christians scattered throughout the earth; the assembly of faithful Christians already dead and received into heaven.

Colossians 1:18 He (Jesus) is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.

Ephesians 5:22-33 Draws parallels between Christ (husband) and the church (bride/wife). He is the savior of the body. He gave Himself for us. We, as believers, are members of His body. He washes and cleanses us with His word. He takes care of us. We are to submit to Christ.

The Tribulation is a seven year period of Divine judgment on the people of planet earth because of our sin. It is a matter of simple justice. Approximately 13% of the Bible is written about this seven year period. If the data points of time in the Bible are taken literally in terms of ages of people and reigns of leaders, the earth is roughly 6,000 years old. This seven year period represents .0005 of history (3.5/6000). Approximately 13% of the Bible focuses on .05% of history! Two chapters in Genesis were dedicated to Noah’s flood. Humanity is being given disproportionate, ample, and considerable warning. Matthew 24:21-22 “For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will. Unless those days had been cut short, no life would have been saved; but for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short.” –Jesus.

Would the ultimate expression of Husband allow His bride to be beaten and bruised by His Father’s judgment and wrath? Would that be “just” to allow the church to be effectively judged twice? Our sins as believers were paid on the cross. Do we need to pay again during the Tribulation?

Romans 6:10 For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all…

Trend Update: Earthquakes, July 2014

Posted in Earthquakes/Volcanoes, Prophecy with tags , , , , , , , , on July 9, 2014 by paulthepoke

Luke 21:11 …and there will be great earthquakes, and in various places plagues and famines; and there will be terrors and great signs from heaven.    –Jesus

There are parallel passages regarding earthquakes by Jesus in Matthew 24:7 and Mark 13:8. The context is the Olivet Discourse. Jesus is answering questions from the disciples regarding the signs of His coming and the End of the Age (Matthew 24:3).

There are at least 7 references to earthquakes in the book of Revelation alone. The beast of all historical earthquakes is to take place in Revelation 16:18 And there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder; and there was a great earthquake, such as there had not been since man came to be upon the earth, so great an earthquake was it, and so mighty.

The end result of this earthquake is Revelation 16:20 And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found. These passages are suggestive of significant, changed geography of planet Earth. No more islands, no more mountains! What we are seeing now (July 2014) is a starter kit.

Are there actually more earthquakes taking place as time goes by? Or does it just seem like it? It seems like earthquakes 5.0 or greater on the Richter Scale are becoming common place. At times, they seem like white noise. What do the numbers indicate? Here are two graphs noted below. The source for the information is the United States Geological Survey (USGS).

Draw your own conclusions.

 

Earthquake-chart earthquake2000-2014

 

 

Rapture Part 4, Old Testament Clues

Posted in Gospel, Prophecy, Rapture with tags , , , , , , , , on July 7, 2014 by paulthepoke

John 14:2-3 “In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.”

In this passage, Jesus is talking with His disciples. Some translate “dwelling places” as “mansions”. Bottom line, Jesus is building a really nice place in Heaven. We know where He is now (July 2014). He is at the right hand of the Father in Heaven (Mark 16:19, Acts 2:33, 1 Peter 3:22). Then He states He will come again to get others. Since He is in Heaven, He will return to “receive” or paralambano (original Greek word). Per Strong’s Concordance, it means: to take or join with one’s self. The grammar indicates this is a future event that is certain to happen. He will certainly take people to join Him in Heaven. Note, there is no mention of His physical return to Earth. This is an event where He gathers people to meet Him in Heaven.

Now why would Jesus take people away from Earth? What purpose does that serve? The Old Testament has answers…

Isaiah 57:1-2 The righteous man perishes, and no man takes it to heart; For the righteous man is taken away from evil, he enters into peace; they rest in their beds, each one who walked in his upright way.

The righteous man perishes, and no man takes it to heart… A just and lawful man dies or ‘abad in the original Hebrew. The word ‘abad can also mean perish, exterminated, or destroyed per Strong’s Concordance. The response from the culture, “Who cares”.

and devout men are taken away, while no one understands…These men are taken away or ‘acaph in the original Hebrew. The word ‘acaph can also mean: collect, to gather (an individual into company of others), to bring up the rear, to gather and take away, remove, withdraw. These men did not die. They have been gathered into a group and taken away. They are withdrawn and removed from bad and evil. The response from the culture is a lack of understanding or discernment.

For the righteous man is taken away from evil, he enters into peace… God’s people, dead or alive, are removed from bad and evil. Their destination is “shalom” not “sheol” or the grave, which is the place for the dead. Shalom is the Hebrew word for peace. Strong’s Concordance defines shalom as: completeness, soundness, welfare, peace, safety, health, prosperity, quiet, tranquility, contentment, friendship of human relationships, and friendship with God especially in covenant relationship.

This stuff is in the Old Testament! It has always been there. It is consistent with the message in the New Testament.

1 Thessalonians 5:9-10 For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep, we will live together with Him.

Trend Update: Temple Red Heifer, July 2014

Posted in Gospel, Prophecy, Temple, Trend Update with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 2, 2014 by paulthepoke

The Temple Institute out of Jerusalem, Israel has announced the identification of a red heifer. Many people will say, “So What!?!” To the Religious Jew, this is a big deal. The Temple Institute has completed the vessels for Temple service. The blue prints for the third Temple are completed. The stone alter is done. The corner stone has been cut. The last piece of the puzzle is the red heifer. They are ready to resume Temple worship service.

The purpose of the red heifer is for the cleansing and purification of the Temple. The heifer is sacrificed outside the city. It is for the removal of sin, a perfect sacrifice for the people (does this remind you of anybody???). Granted, Christ’s sacrifice took care of sin once and for all. The sacrifice of animals is no longer necessary (Hebrews 10). But these folks are not associated with Jews for Jesus. They do not believe “that man” was the Messiah.

Numbers 19:1-10 Then the LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, “This is the statute of the law which the LORD has commanded, saying, ‘Speak to the sons of Israel that they bring you an unblemished red heifer in which is no defect and on which a yoke has never been placed. You shall give it to Eleazar the priest, and it shall be brought outside the camp and be slaughtered in his presence. Next Eleazar the priest shall take some of its blood with his finger and sprinkle some of its blood toward the front of the tent of meeting seven times. Then the heifer shall be burned in his sight; its hide and its flesh and its blood, with its refuse, shall be burned. The priest shall take cedar wood and hyssop and scarlet material and cast it into the midst of the burning heifer. The priest shall then wash his clothes and bathe his body in water, and afterward come into the camp, but the priest shall be unclean until evening. The one who burns it shall also wash his clothes in water and bathe his body in water, and shall be unclean until evening. Now a man who is clean shall gather up the ashes of the heifer and deposit them outside the camp in a clean place, and the congregation of the sons of Israel shall keep it as water to remove impurity; it is purification from sin. The one who gathers the ashes of the heifer shall wash his clothes and be unclean until evening; and it shall be a perpetual statute to the sons of Israel and to the alien who sojourns among them. 

PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) will not be pleased with what happens to this Heifer if it is found to be without blemish.

According to Jewish tradition, historically there have been 9 perfect red heifers. The 10th perfect red heifer is to coincide with the advent of the Messiah and the third Temple. These folks are committed and serious. Watch some of the video productions at http://www.templeinstitute.org

One big condition, there needs to be land on the Temple Mount that has approval for construction.

Paul the Poke

Habakkuk 1:5 Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded. For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told. -LORD God

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