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You who have purchased Rapture Ready…Or Not? are so very much appreciated. I prayerfully hope this book has comforted and blessed you with Christ’s Promise that He is very near the moment of making that call for which we all listen: Come up here!” (Rev 4: 1).
Positive reviews are absolutely essential to a book’s credibility and to its success. Will you please write such a review on the Amazon site given below?
My hope is that many pastors, teachers and those of the millennial generation of your and my circles will be given copies of this book during these, perhaps the most crucial, upcoming days of this American republic’s history. My most profound thanks to you!
Each Christmas we come to another time of proclaiming peace on earth. Many aboard spaceship Earth send tidings of peace and good will. But the prospects for such, sadly, are anything but joyful upon this tremulous sphere–now or at Christmas time, no matter the year. The only one who can spread such tidings –and make joyous times a reality–is relegated to the status of one religious figure among many by those who cry for peace. They, as a matter of fact, do all within their politically correct power to remove mention of Him from the season of celebration that has for centuries bore His holy name.
The incessant plea for there to be peace is, itself, prophetic in nature. The peace today’s earth-dwellers seek above all other is centered around the terrifying prospects of war that threatens to erupt from the most sensitive geographical location on the planet. God considers this place the center of the world. He deals with man based upon their treatment of how they deal with Israel in general, and with Jerusalem in particular.
The Bible is replete with those who deal treacherously, seeking to establish hegemony over the region. The Lord will not allow tranquility to reign so long as that tranquility is based upon establishing governance that does not include Him as sovereign in the matter. One prophecy about such surreptitious “peace” powerfully thunders God’s Word on the matters involved.
“[To wit], the prophets of Israel which prophesy concerning Jerusalem, and which see visions of peace for her, and [there is] no peace, saith the Lord GOD” (Ezek. 13:16).
The Lord God condemns all who try to establish their wicked man-made peace within His land.
“The way of peace they know not; and [there is] no judgment in their goings: they have made them crooked paths: whosoever goeth therein shall not know peace” (Isa. 59:8).
Israel’s God states in no uncertain terms the truth about the false peacemakers: “[There is] no peace, saith the LORD, unto the wicked” (Isa. 48:22). His judgment is certain, and He minces no words in pronouncing what will happen to those who force man-made peace upon Israel and to the people of Israel herself who sign on to that pseudo-guarantee of peace and safety.
“For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape” (1Thess. 5:3).
The prophet Jeremiah speaks for the Lord in pointing the finger of judgment at Israel, which has throughout history turned to others than their God for security.
Although a time will come when Israeli leadership will seek peace-making by the one, satanically driven man who will betray them, for the moment, Israeli leadership is resisting attempts to make them conform to what the world wants for them. And what the world wants is elimination, ultimately, because the world’s ultimate leader during the present time is none other than Lucifer. He directs the minds of world leadership toward antisemitism, as is easily observable as we near the end of the age.
There is more and more invective against the Jewish state’s increasingly unpopular position, hurled by leaderships of earth’s nation-states. God speaks directly about these trying to force peace upon His chosen people: “For they have healed the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when [there is] no peace” (Jer. 8:11).
The present road to false peace will eventuate in devastation –to which the prophet Daniel speaks. The ultimate false peacemaker is the subject of Daniel’s forewarning. The Antichrist.
“And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up. And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people. And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many…” (Dan. 8:23-25c).
But, thankfully, that isn’t the end of the story for Israel or the world. Daniel gives the outcome of Antichrist’s false peacemaking that results in unprecedented devastation.
“…he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand” (Dan. 8:25d).
Antichrist and all of the phony peacemakers of history will be crushed and ground to powder. They will be blown away by the winds of history into the dustbin of eternity. Daniel foretells the final destruction of the false purveyors of peace talk through interpreting Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar’s strange dream of a man-image that represented the four great kingdoms that would rule over earth until Christ’s return:
“Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces. Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshing floors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth” (Dan. 2:34-35).
Nahum the prophet gives the final Word of God about the resolution to the long search for peace. Again, peace on earth centers around Israel, Jerusalem, and the Prince of Peace, that great earthly power-crushing stone–the Lord Jesus Christ.
“Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace! O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows: for the wicked shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off” (Nah. 1:5).
PEACE is the purpose for which the Christ-child was born–to bring peace to humanity by providing sin-destroying reconciliation to God the Father through Christ’s shed blood on Calvary’s cross. God chose that the Redeemer, His Son Jesus, would become the God-man through Israel. That’s why we are commanded to pray for the peace of Jerusalem (Psalm 122:6). Only when the Prince of Peace reigns and rules will there be peace on Earth, good will toward men.
It seems observably true—to me, at least—that this generation stands on God’s prophetic timeline very near the time Daniel the Old Testament prophet described, as recorded in the following:
And the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron: forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all things: and as iron that breaketh all these, shall it break in pieces and bruise. And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters’ clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay. And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken. And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay. (Daniel 2:40-43)
Daniel was given by God both the dream-vision that Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar had one troubling night and its interpretation. The dream was of a huge, metallic, man image. The image, Daniel interpreted, was of four world powers, and a final, fifth world power, which would come on the scene at the very end of human history just before God judged earth’s rebellious governments. Then, the prophecy indicates, a new regime—headed by God himself—will rule and reign:
And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever. (Daniel 2:44)
Daniel prophesied that the fifth world power will come out of the fourth. We know the order of world empires from history. The first Daniel interpreted, at the time he was giving the interpretation, was Babylon. The second would be the Medo-Persian. The third would be the Greek Empire, and the fourth would be the Roman Empire, represented in Nebuchadnezzar’s night-vision by the legs of iron. The fifth empire—the final empire, and the only one that is yet to come into being as fulfilled prophecy—is represented by the feet and toes of that metallic monstrosity.
To my understanding, at least, the five world empires given to Daniel in metallic representations—i.e., gold for the head, silver for the breast and arms, brass or bronze for the belly and thighs, and iron for the legs, feet and toes—is indicative of money and the power to rule over the inhabitants of planet earth. Metals have most always been at the center of any economy throughout history. And when the metals represented the power to mold and construct weaponry—e.g., spears, bullets, bombs, war craft like tanks, planes, ships, etc.—the power of the metal and the economies of the world powers become understandable. Money is power, and power is control. These are inextricably linked.
The fifth world power will come from the Roman Empire, which disintegrated but is reforming, we who observe prophecy from the pretrib view believe. We believe that the European Union is almost certainly the nucleus out of which this last Gentile power is emerging. This is the area of central Europe in particular. Rome is the very heart of that nucleus.
Daniel also prophesied about the last world empire’s leader who would leap to center stage at just the right moment in Satan’s plans to bring him to power:
And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate. (Daniel 9:26-27)
Antichrist, “the beast,” as this vicious future tyrant is termed, will come to power and rule ruthlessly. His power will emanate from economics—the ability to call all to worship him through a mark and numbering system that will control buying and selling. (Read Revelation 13:16-18 to understand this 666 system of absolute control.)
We are witnessing economic rearrangements at present like no other generation has seen. Even the United States—as anyone with any sense of what’s been going on in the news will attest—is being forced into a mold of one-world economic order. It is all leading toward the mark and numbering system that will give Antichrist his power. (Read Revelation 17:12-13 to learn of the ten economic power blocs that will develop, then give power and authority to the beast—Antichrist, the ruler of the fifth and final world empire.)
Europe today is in dynamic upheaval, struggling to stand on the feet and toes that will give the eventual Antichrist system its balance, its equilibrium. But just as Daniel the prophet foretold, the feet and toes are not made of purely a metal of strength. The EU is made partly of the governmental strength that was the ancient Roman Empire, but also is constructed of weakness intrinsic within the governments of contemporary times. This makes the whole structure that is the final form of all worldly economic-governmental power subject to crashing to final collapse. This is exactly what Daniel foresaw as given above in Daniel 2:44.
A news story exposes, I believe, the prophesied struggle the reviving Roman Empire is having. The problem of everything not fitting together well is obvious in considering the economic situation.
The European Commission said on Monday that talks between Greece and its creditor institutions on a third bailout had begun in Athens after a delay of a few days.
“Teams from the institutions are now already on the ground in Athens, and work is starting immediately as we speak. Work has started, meaning that the institutions are talking to the Greek authorities”, a Commission spokeswoman said.
Talks were due to have started last week, but were delayed because of organizational issues. (Negotiations for new bailout deal start in Athens, World Bulletin / News Desk)
Europe is caught in powerful monetary winds of change. Greece, the 10th nation to join the EU is at the center of this change. It all portends an eventual forcing by the master manipulator –Satan—of Europe, and most of the rest of the world, into the 666 system of control.
Paul the apostle wrote of the economic reality that drives the world toward God’s judgment and wrath: “But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil” (1 Timothy 6:9-10a).
Certainly, the truth of God’s Word frames what is happening at this time in history, and where it all is heading as the rulers of this fallen sphere grasp for the wealth of this world and strive to cast off the bonds of governance God wisely placed upon the would-be masters of planet earth.
Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten. Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days. Behold, the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of sabaoth. Ye have lived in pleasure on the earth, and been wanton; ye have nourished your hearts, as in a day of slaughter. Ye have condemned and killed the just; and he doth not resist you. (James 5:1-6)
We are in the end of the age era of the toes of Nebuchadnezzar’s night-vision.
Israel is the one nation, and Jerusalem is the one city on the planet God personally reserves unto himself. He doesn’t equivocate; it is His nation and city, and anyone or anything that tries to wrest it from Him will suffer eternal consequences.
We ascertain this when reading verses such as follows:
“…for the land is Mine; for you are but aliens and sojourners with Me” (Lev. 25:23). “…then I will uproot you from My land which I have given you…” (2 Chron. 7:20) “Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah and against Jerusalem. And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it (Zech. 12:2-3).
The God of Creation, who in reality owns every atom of existence, clearly tells the inhabitants of Planet Earth that these are His geographical places He reserves for himself. The Lord, in warning those who would harm Jerusalem, refers to that city this way: “For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye” (Zech. 2:8).
Jesus, the Messiah, said about this city, while weeping, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, [thou] that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under [her] wings, and ye would not!” (Matt. 23:37).
These and many other Scriptures make it undeniably clear that God loves Israel and Jerusalem. He considers them His personal earthly real estate. He loved them in the past, and has great prophetic plans for them. Therefore, He loves Israel and Jerusalem today.
This being the documentable case, I’ve always had a question within the milieu of eschatological consideration in which I’ve engaged for a number of decades.
The question: Why the following reference to this divinely designated real estate?
“And their dead bodies [shall lie] in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified” (Rev.11:8).
The reference here is to the two witnesses who will preach to the earth dwellers of the tribulation era. The question that has always ruminated in my mind is why God calls this beloved city and nation, “spiritually,” “Sodom and Egypt”?
The people of Israel, before its dispersions and after its modern regathering in the land, have been wicked and done things contrary to God’s will. But, so has every other city and nation that has ever existed on Planet Earth.
The condemnation in this Revelation context, seems, to my mind, reference to prophecy yet future. Jerusalem is destined to become as wicked as the ancient city of Sodom and the idol-worshipping ancient Egypt, in God’s holy view. This shouldn’t surprise, considering how the devil is working overtime in every city and nation of the world today. Satan wanted to usurp the throne of God, e.g., Isa. 14:13-14. It stands to reason –and to scriptural analysis–that the wicked one would want to usurp Christ’s future earthly throne as well. And, for a fact, not even the unbelieving heathens of the world can deny that Jerusalem and the nation Israel are at the center of global conflict today. It is the most feared potential point for triggering nuclear conflagration on this old troubled sphere.
Lucifer, the fallen one, is certainly working his devilish plan to bring all to Armageddon. This includes his all out-efforts against the apple of God’s eye –the city of Zion –Jerusalem. He will indeed succeed in making Jerusalem, spiritually, like Sodom. Proof that Satan’s plan is far along in its progress toward that goal is in today’s news, as follows:
On the anniversary of the destruction of the two Jewish Holy Temples in Jerusalem, Tisha B’Av, an Israeli Arab lawmaker insisted in a radio interview that neither ever existed. Joint Arab List (Ra’am Tal) Knesset member Masoud Ganaim made the statement during an interview Sunday (July 26) on Galei Tzahal Army Radio. Ganaim was asked – as was Jewish lawmaker Yinon Magal from the Bayit Yehudi party — about violent riots that were being perpetrated by Muslim Arabs in the Al Aqsa mosque on the site of the Temple Mount. The rioting Arabs hurled rocks, cement blocks, firebombs and other explosives at Israel Police and even Waqf Islamic Authority security personnel from inside the mosque.
When asked about the violence, Ganaim said that the rock-throwing was not the problem: the real issue, he said, was the “incitement” caused by Jews wanting to pray at the site, considered the holiest in the Jewish faith. Ganaim also said during the conversation that no Jewish Temples ever existed on the Temple Mount – and that he knows this for a fact because he is a history teacher. “The State of Israel knows that Jews and Israel have no legitimacy to the site except for their legitimacy as an occupier – a legitimacy won by force,” he said. (The Jewish Press » » ‘Jewish Holy Temples Never Existed’ Says Israeli Arab MK , Rapture Ready News 7/27/15)
Regardless of all lies by Israel’s enemies to the contrary, things are prophetically setting up for the moment when the man of sin, Satan’s false messiah, Antichrist, sits in a temple atop Mount Moriah, precisely above the spot where the Ark of the Covenant once sat (2 Thes. 2:3-4). He might even sit upon the same Ark, if it is found, or a counterfeit one, declaring himself to be God, and demanding worship (Rev. 13). Israel’s prideful enemies pervert at every turn the order God has established for the Jews and for Israel. Antichrist will be the ultimately evolved pridefulness against God’s Holy Will. Here’s what God says about mankind’s pride –especially that which perverts His creation order:
“The fear of the LORD [is] to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate” (Prov. 8:13).
Can there be serious doubt that this rebellious generation stands poised upon the precipice of the end of days?
Terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 on the World Trade Center towers and the Pentagon being always in our thinking, it is perhaps appropriate to reflect upon where this generation might stand while the prophesied apocalyptic storm approaches.
My colleagues and I often discuss these days the apparent lull in birth pang-like contractions the world seems to be in at this time. Other than the tsunami of December 2004, the catastrophic hurricanes that hit the Gulf Coast in 2005, and the current ISIS rampages across the Middle East, major convulsions that might be harbingers of the tribulation have seemed minimally significant. But, upon closer examination, is the supposed lull really a lull?
Scripture verses like the following come to mind, when thinking on end-time activity prophesied, with regard to the “time of sorrows” spoken of by the Lord: “And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring” (Lk. 21:25).
Jesus said world conditions just before His return will be like a woman in travail with child. Geopolitical, geophysical and societal/cultural matters will be in a state of wave-like flare-ups. Yet there seems a dichotomy in His Mount of Olives discourse prophecies. Jesus’ words indicate that the time of His coming will be preceded by, at the same time, a worldwide perception that lulls earth’s inhabitants into a sense of things being as usual. Here is what He said in a couple of prophetic passages: “Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh” (Matt. 24:44). “And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man. They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all. Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed” (Lk. 17:26-30).
Perhaps a bit earlier–in the late 20th century— we were left to wonder why this dichotomy. Why Jesus foretold a time of tremendously increased troubles for the world –that come in birth pang-like fashion—and yet at the same time gave a picture of a day when no one will really see the birth pangs, except those who are truly watching for end-time things that are occurring. How can it be that these painful contractions are going on, while they are, for the most part, not noticed, just before Christ intervenes with catastrophic results?
The answer is, I think, that the contractions are so frequent now that the world has by and large become desensitized to what is happening. The quaking earth, the raging seas–both literally and figuratively (the seas of humanity), the signals of societal collapse, and all the rest assaulting our brains day and night through reports from the ever-present news media simply overload the senses. Thus there is at the same time the birth pang-like convulsions and the ho-hum attitude –even among God’s people—that things are the same as always. So, the perceived lull is really no lull at all. We reflect on what’s really going on at present.
- The world’s economy is as near collapse as the next financial default of any number of nations.
- The highest court in America has over-ruled God in the matter of His making marriage between a man and a woman, forcing upon the American people what God’s Word calls Abomination.
- America’s president embraces the tyrants of the world yet flagrantly demonstrates his dislike for Israel, threatening to pull America away from close alliance with the Jewish state.
Yet the world wags on, with America – in spite of rumors of serious economic and social ills that could disrupt not only the U.S., but the world’s economy, continuing to carry on business as usual.
We can definitely begin to understand the two conditions co-existing that seem in such diametric opposition one to the other. We begin to comprehend the paradox —both the great upheaval, and the sense of business as usual.
Obviously Jesus Christ, who is God, foresaw this incrementalism that will dull the perception of most alive on Planet Earth just before He intervenes catastrophically into the affairs of mankind in the end of days. He knew all about the lull that will in actuality not be a lull at all, but a situation not unlike the proverbial frog who does not realize it is being boiled alive because it can’t perceive its precarious, even lethal, circumstance.
That is why Jesus instructed those who are called by His holy name: “And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.” (Mk. 13:37).
The following article is one I wrote upon the death of Dr. James D. Kennedy. Considering our nation’s precarious situation at present, it is good to reflect.
The former Kennedy to which I refer was a charismatic politician, who, as president of the United States, dealt with the issues of war and peace on a global scale. The latter, president of Coral Ridge Ministries and pastor of a 10,000-member Presbyterian church, dealt in matters of spiritual war and peace.
President Kennedy died a sudden, violent death from an assassin’s bullets on a street in Dallas, Texas. Dr. Kennedy died in his bed while he slept at home, recuperating from a severe heart attack several months previous.
We are all familiar with the massive amount of air time and print space that continues to be given to John F. Kennedy’s life and death. His legacy is as much legend as historical fact, with speculations about the assassination and what might have been, had he lived to complete his term(s).
Two men named Kennedy, now having passed into history, left their marks on our time: John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963, and James D. Kennedy, this past Wednesday, September 5, 2007. James D. Kennedy filled the airwaves and even the pages of newspapers, his activities often crossing from spiritual to political matters. His involvements in the moral issues that are part of the politics of the day received few accolades from news media. Most often his taking issue with anything detrimental to family values, from the Judeo-Christian perspective, met with opinion pieces of a scathing nature not unlike those opinions of opposition thrown as barbs from the liberal-leaning journalists of America.
The private conduct of these men, according to what is known about them, diverges greatly from each other, from the standpoint of morality –the issues that surround traditional family values in America. But, if the journalists rewriting history toward the objective of shaping legacy is accepted when all is said and done, each man’s own biography will cross at some point in the matter of morality.
Here’s what I mean.
John F. Kennedy has a space center, airports, many streets, schools, a ship, and who knows what else named after him, and didn’t even really begin to get to start the work his glowing inaugural address proclaimed–saying finally, “ …Knowing this first, that here on earth, God’s work must truly be our own.” With the exception of being at the American helm of state during the Cuban missile crisis of October, 1962, he did little of substance to carry on what the politicos consider “God’s work.”
Following his death, the journalists who make their livings dredging up muck, if it can be made to translate into book sales or commercially funded documentaries and other remunerative works or popularity creation, presented the president’s many dalliances with “ladies” other than his wife. But, after the mud settled to the bottom, JFK’s reputation for doing “God’s work” –according to the politicos’ definition of the term—again sparkles pristinely, because of the constant revisionist scrubbing given the assassinated president’s Camelot legacy. He now again seems among the most moral of men, because he was–according to the history-fictioneers— progenitor of the modern Democrat Party, who champions the poor and downtrodden through government action. As a matter of fact, his influence in death was so powerful in this area that Lyndon B. Johnson, who succeeded him, was able to get taxes raised for the government to spend, to this point, literally trillions of dollars on the great society, then the ongoing war on poverty –which is still with us today.
Dr. James D. Kennedy, from the news pundits’ perspectives, constantly preached morality, exhorting, urging, even chiding government legislative leaders and the executive branch to “impose” Judeo-Christian principles upon all freedom-loving Americans. This Kennedy preached that here on earth God’s work must truly be his and other Christians’ own work. He then proceeded to actually carry out that work, not simply pontificate upon how it should be accomplished, as liberal government and media types do, and advocate doing in throwing taxpayers’ money at causes that require other than simply massive funding of socio-political programs. For this activist Christian leadership, he was, like the late Jerry Falwell, despised by the journalistic powers that be.
James Kennedy lobbied from his TV pulpit and other venues to try to bring this nation back to the true principles of the founding fathers, principles steeped in instructions provided within God’s love letter to mankind, the Holy Bible. Dr. Kennedy didn’t propose to “impose” his morality on the citizens of this nation, as charged by his, Jerry Falwell’s, and others’ sometimes virulent opposition. He went into great detail, and often, to instruct from early history books about how a people can be blessed of God, only if they adhere to godly principles for societal and cultural deportment. He showed plainly how this was not and is not the melding of church and state, in the sense of the state establishing a single religious entity to rule over citizenry. He proved constantly and consistently that Jefferson’s words in an obscure letter didn’t mean that Jefferson meant there should exist a separation of church and state as claimed by those who demand that God be kept out of America’s public life. Rather, the nation’s third president meant simply that there should be no one religion sanctioned by the state. For Jefferson and most all of the founding fathers, their belief was almost unanimous. America must not be free from religion, but must be free for all to worship as they please, free from fear of intimidation from the state.
But, if the media pundits opposed to biblical morality (that plainly endorsed by the founding fathers) succeed in continuing down the present path of vilifying men like the late Dr. Kennedy, it is the phony legacy of legend that will sit as the “shining city on the hill,” as Ronald Reagan put his view of and vision for America. It will be the fictitious “Camelot,” not “one nation under God,” that will be the ever-dimming beacon of freedom for the world to see and emulate.
I have a certain respect and admiration for John F. Kennedy’s presidency. He was in the presidential saddle when death in the form of nuclear Armageddon came riding across the Atlantic from the Soviet Union. Even though it was God’s staying hand that preserved this nation and the world during that nail-biting time, I must give Mr. Kennedy respect, because God, the Bible tells us, sets up rulers and brings them down. Both happened, in JFK’s case.
I disagreed very much with Dr. James D. Kennedy on matters of eschatology. His belief that the church had replaced Israel in God’s prophetic promises yet future, were, and are, totally flawed. His denial in matters revolving around the pre-trib rapture of the church flowed out of the Reform beliefs in God’s reneging on His promises to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. He failed to see God’s two programs—for Israel and for the Church. He knows better now.
Dr. Kennedy’s faithfulness to the Word of God in most all areas of Scripture, however, was a powerful tool in his Lord’s omnipotent hands. His absolute adherence to the gospel message –that Jesus is the only way to God the Father and heaven—was always presented clearly, eloquently, and wonderfully from his pulpit in Ft. Lauderdale. Dr. James D. Kennedy’s legacy, though trampled upon by those who oppose God’s truth here on earth, is a legacy that will live for all eternity throughout God’s kingdom –the only kingdom that matters in the final analysis.
Years ago, before I finally received assistance with my email, every time I opened my email Outlook Express brought to my attention the same sort of salacious e-mail prompts. Being blind now due to a retinal disease since 1993, I must endure the laborious process of listening to my JAWS (Jobs Accessible Word System) computer-synthesized voice program read to me the cesspool verbiage.
I learned to quickly hit the delete key, thus ridding my senses and my “In Box” of the invitations to wallow in the sewage that floats within cyberspace. I guess I should be thankful I can’t see the graphic depictions that lure so many into those depths of depravity. And, deep they are. These allurements to enhance one’s sexual prowess are often disguised as medical assistance for genuine physical problems. The intention of the father of lies, however, is to use even the “legitimate” sexual assistance drugs to drag all who take the lures into the swamp of debauchery. He seems to be succeeding in that regard. One researcher analyzed the burgeoning sexual addictions in cyberspace:
“The internet is now a contributing factor to nearly one-half of all marital or family problems. In some cases, relationships are breaking down when a man or woman develops a relationship in cyber society. High levels of Internet use can produce social isolation, loss of real intimacy and depression. Men, women and families are going into counseling for relationship problems that are partly or entirely caused by compulsive internet use or virtual addictions.
Women are filing for divorce claiming that their husbands are having sex on-line or looking at ‘pornography’ for hours every day. Kids stay up all night. Parents stop relating and spend less time raising their children… Many people go on-line to find information. But unfortunately the most perverse human and even human-animal sexual interactions are available on-line. The biggest ‘rushes’ for the severe addicts come from violent sexual cruelties that are available on-line. People tell themselves that they can just click and look for a second, but they don’t realize that the trauma and stimulating effects are addictive. The most addictive content is the most shocking that changes your mood quickly. A quick look at graphic violence is a ‘rush’ even if you find it offensive. Normal people can become addicted to disgusting content not because they approve but because it changes and excites their mood. People become excited and disgusted at the same time…” (“Internet Addiction, Cyber Sex, Internet Sex and Virtual Addiction,” by Michael Conner, Psy.D).
I’m certain that most everyone reading this face the same type prurient e-mail prompts as I used to face every time you open your e-mail programs. Even the most fervent Christian is susceptible to the allurements of the world, the flesh and the devil. Jesus prophesied an end-time generation that would be like in the days of Noah and of Lot: “But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (Matt. 24:37-39).
The relevant sin that links this generation to that of Noah’s day, as prophesied by the Lord, is: “And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Gen 6:5).
The internet is an excellent tool for use in God’s service; it is invaluable in my work in my writing, etc., to be sure. But, its use as the devil’s tool in feeding garbage to the minds of an increasingly perverse generation already full of wickedness, whose imagination of the thoughts of their hearts are only on evil continually, cannot be denied.
While this present dispensation of God’s grace culminates, and we consider what is coming upon a wicked and rebellious world of earth dwellers, those who name the name of Christ are instructed from God’s prophetic Word: “Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?” (2 Pet. 3:11-12).
Prayer, Bible study and working to carry out Christ’s great commission is the combined preventative and antidote for imagination of the heart that is only on evil continually. Let us keep our thoughts on a higher plain, while we watch for Christ’s calling us to be with Him.
One of the most false and cutting accusations launched at the belief that the Bible teaches that a person cannot lose his or her salvation when truly born again (John 3:3) is: “If you believe once saved, always saved, you are saying that people can live any way they want without fear of punishment.” Or so the line of condemning criticism goes.
The absolute assurance of eternal security, of course, engenders no such thought within the mind truly regenerated by the saving power of Jesus Christ. The Bible teaches that the Lord convicts His children in their spirits, and that habitual, unrepented-of sin will result in severe penalties—even physical death, in some cases. The Heavenly Father’s patience is longsuffering, but it is not infinite.
A person who is a child of God cannot sin without severe repercussions, if repentance isn’t forthcoming. But, that person will never be kicked out of God’s family. Never.
A kindred sort of accusation is thrown at those who believe in the Pre-Trib view of Bible prophecy. The Pre-Tribulation view, of course, is the one we believe God’s Word teaches. It is the view that Jesus Christ will call all who are born again to Himself before the Tribulation, which is the last seven years of history leading to the Second Advent (Rev. 19: 11).
The angry diatribe against the Pre-Trib Rapture view—by even genuine Christians, in many cases—usually goes something like this: “People like you, who believe that the Lord is going to rapture them before the Tribulation, think you can live however you want, because you think and teach falsely that you are going to be rescued before God’s judgment and wrath fall, no matter what.”
The non-Christian accusers who castigate those of us who hold the Pre-Trib rapture view have their own version. It goes something like: “Christians who believe like that don’t care anything about making the world better. You even hope for things to get worse and worse. You wish for earthquakes, famines, pestilence, war in the Middle East, and for Armageddon to hurry up and get here so you will go to your pie in the sky, and watch the rest of us get ours.”
Although the first criticism is absolutely not true, I have to admit that, regarding the second, too often I’ve sensed—even heard—such sentiments from some of those who believe in the Pre-Trib rapture. And, it is entirely the wrong attitude for the Christian to hold. There are no excuses for wanting the Christ-rejecting world of non-believers to be the recipients of God’s judgment and wrath. It is only by God’s unfathomable grace that every one of us isn’t headed into that time of unprecedented horror.
No matter how—to use Lot’s King James Version word—”vexed” we becomes by the debauched, debased actions of the lost world around us, our job as Christ’s children—His representatives here on earth—is of a completely different nature than wanting to see them “get what’s coming” to them. The changed nature produced by being born again into God’s eternal family should make you and me do just the opposite of wanting them, in our vexation, to get what we see as coming to them.
The Christian whose spirit is attuned to the Holy Spirit’s desire for the lost doesn’t want to see them “get what’s coming to them” either during the Tribulation or upon death. Rather, we want to do all within our power to keep them from having to go through the coming time of God’s judgment and wrath. That’s what Christ’s Great Commission to His disciples before He ascended to sit at the Father’s right hand is all about, you see. That is what God’s love—love that those who have Christ indwelling them possess—is all about. (Read Matthew 28:18-20.)
In the same vein, that’s what Bible prophecy is all about. Prophecy given in God’s Word has purpose—profound purpose. Bible prophecy has at its center the commission from the Lord to forewarn of God’s judgment and wrath to come upon all who oppose Him—the Lord of Heaven and Creator of all things. It is not the hatred of God for the lost people of this fallen planet that drives prophecy. It is the love of God that powers His prophetic Word. It must be the Christian’s desire, therefore, to study Bible prophecy and put forth those forewarnings out of a spirit of God’s love, not through an anger-filled abhorrence of those who are lost.
Christians who do study prophecy—and they seem to be few these days, I’m sad to have to say—are often heard wondering about when Christ will call the church (born-again believers) in the rapture. Everything seems so ripe for His plucking His people from this sin-darkened sphere.
Nothing and no one can change God’s timing for His next catastrophic intervention into earth’s history. It will happen exactly on time, as He has determined since before the foundation of this world. However, we might as believers look to ourselves for the Lord’s—often in our view—delay in calling us as outlined in 1 Corinthians 15:51-55 and 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18.
The apostle Peter gave the heart of the reason Christ hasn’t raptured His church: “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Pet. 3:9).
The purpose of Bible prophecy is to show the love of God to a lost and otherwise doomed world. God is not willing that anyone should perish (die in his or her sins), but that all should come to repentance (accept Jesus Christ as the one and only sacrifice for sin that God will accept).
The Lord is “longsuffering.” The reason, I’m convinced, that the Lord seems so “slack” to many in His coming is because those same people have neglected their duty to share the love of God with the lost—the lost whom God loves so very much that He sent His only begotten Son in order that they not perish.
It is well past the time for God’s people to begin investing in getting the message of the love of God to those who will otherwise not hear the warning of deadly things soon to befall this Christ-rejecting planet. Considering these times that so dramatically are signaling the coming Tribulation, Bible prophecy can and must be used as a productive tool for evangelism.