Thursday, February 15, 2018

Little Did He Know

To the saints of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,

Do you want to know how much your Savior loves you? How much you have been forgiven?

You may be struggling with “feelings” of doubt about how such a great and awesome God has possibly forgiven you of your past sins. I am not just talking about sins from since you have become a believer but since before you became one as well. These “feelings” may be causing you to be stagnant in the rivers of His mercy and overflowing grace. Believe what the word says and choose faith today. Cling tightly to His promises even if your faith is just that of a mustard seed.

Ponder upon Matthew 18:12 which says, ““What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them goes astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine and go to the mountains to seek the one that is straying?” Jesus is speaking to believers here. Remember Romans 3:23 as to how, “We all fall short of the glory of God.” However, Philippians 2:13 states, “It is God Who works in you both to will and to do of His good pleasures.” In the flesh you can do nothing on your own to please the Lord. By walking in the flesh you will naturally fulfill the lusts of the flesh. Allow the Holy Spirit in which you received upon believing to dwell in you richly. Believe you have been washed in the blood of the Lamb and made white as snow. Titus 3:4-7 “But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace, we should be heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”

Think about Paul who was once known as Saul in Acts Chapter 8 and how he set out to wreak havoc upon the church by going into every house and dragging off men and women to be thrown into prison. He even gave his seal of approval for the stoning death of Stephen. Yet little did he know (Acts 9) that he would be converted on the Damascus road. He was not the least bit interested in seeking a Savior. In fact he was still breathing out threats and murder to the Lord’s disciples when the Lord touched Him! In Acts 9:4 the Lord asked, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?”

Personally in my own experience I was searching for more but I had know idea what it was until I came to the divine revelation that I needed a Savior. Saul on the other hand was in complete and total rebellion. Don’t get me wrong. I was living in rebellion as well. I still fight against the Lord because I get selfish and I want things my own way. Ephesians 2:1-3, “And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others.”

It was in the year of 1990 at the age of 20 during the Persian Gulf War which was immediately followed by Desert Storm that I first began my journey in search of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I have always been one who has anticipated World War 3 presenting itself right before my eyes and those wars did not help my feelings any. A few seeds as well had recently been planted to steer me in the direction towards the path in which I would choose to follow.  I had been writing poems and songs since I was 15 and I had began making attempts at writing Christian songs. However, I had no idea what it meant to be a Christian. I was somewhat like the Ethiopian In Acts 8:26-38. I had began reading scripture yet I had no idea as to what I was reading. I just knew it was very important. Then not long after that someone began witnessing to me and the light steadily began to overcome the darkness and I asked to be baptized. Although I did not understand what I was reading as an unbeliever the scales had fallen off my eyes and I now I have the hope of 1st John 2:27 which says, “But the anointing which you have received in Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him. Now life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are just a glimpse of the numerous benefits I reap through such a divine deliverance. The life is a life that is found in Christ because 2nd Corinthians tells me, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” Liberty as proclaimed in Galatians 5:1, “Stand fast in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.” Happiness: Proverbs 16:20, “And whoever trusts in the Lord, happy is he.”

After Sauls’ conversion his name was changed to Paul. He later wrote these scriptures as examples of the point in which I am hoping to make clear. Ephesians 2:4-9, “But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.”

Ephesians 3:14-21 “For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height—to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”

I can’t help but think that when Paul wrote those verses along with many others that he reflected upon the life in which he had once known and was eternally grateful for the man he was becoming in Christ Jesus as he walked out his salvation by faith while in fear and much trembling. For walking in a healthy fear of the Lord is the only way to be able to shun and run away from evil.

Many people think that because God is love that we should not fear Him. But to those who think such, I say to you, as a child having an earthly Father. When you did something that you knew would not be pleasing to him did you not become afraid of the consequences in which you might face? Hopefully you had a good earthly Father and you know that it was because he loved you and only wanted what was in your best interest. It is all the more with the Lord of Whom created the Heavens and the earth.

For how little did Saul know of the divine revelation he was about to receive when what seemed to appear out of nowhere was the presence of the great God Almighty Himself. If we only choose to see it in the natural then it is totally beyond belief that this same man would be blessed beyond measure in being able to describe his vision of paradise and how he had been caught up by the Lord into the third heaven. Fortunately for us the Lord does not have tunnel vision as He saw in Saul a mighty warrior who was bold and zealous and how much more so once he was to become enlightened with the truth? The Lords pursuit of His children is so beyond comprehension yet defined in 2nd Timothy 1:8-9 as such, “for the gospel according to the power of God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began.” It is timeless!

The Lord touched Saul even while still dead in his trespasses. Now to those of you Who already believe, don’t put the the Lord and all of His divine attributes in a box where they have no room to work in your life as he did in the life of Paul. “For it is in Him that we live and move and have our being.” Acts 17:28 Fix your eyes upon Jesus and trust in a great big God to do great big things in your life as you yield to Him. Allow His presence to dwell in you so that others will see the same love of a Holy Father while in your presence.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Shipwrecked Faith

Did you know that you could be shipwrecked and your footsteps still be ordered of the Lord? Paul mentions in 2nd Corinthians 11:25 how he had been shipwrecked not once but three times. Psalm 37:23 says, "The steps of a good man are ordered of the Lord." Paul knew Colossians 1:17 and how, "Christ is before all things and in Him all things hold together." So if he put the Lord first then everything would fall into place to the glory of the Lord. This knowledge sent him on a tumultuous obstacle course of unforeseen dangers. 

However it was through living out such a bold and unwavering faith that Paul was given the great honor of being instructed by the Lord with the guidance of the Holy Spirit to write 13 books of the New Testamant. Paul was obviously highly favored which tells me he was a good man. Yet not only was he shipwrecked the scripture also tells us in that same passage how he had been beaten three times with rods, stoned once, in perils with robbers, his own countrymen, in hunger and thirst and so on.

You see Paul was able to write so many books because he had lived it. For he says in Romans 5:1-5 where he speaks of how we are justified by faith. "Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through Whom we also have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint us, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit Who was given to us." He also recognized and acknowledged in Romans 8:34-35, "It is Christ Who died, and furthermore is also risen, Who is even at the right hand of God, Who also makes intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?" Verse 37 "Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him Who loved us." As Jesus declared while upon the cross in John 19:30, "It is finished!"

I wonder what Paul did while he was shipwrecked and I can't help but think about when he and Silas were in jail and how they sang praises to the Lord and the prison doors were opened and everyone's chains were loosed. Who in their right mind sings praises to the Lord while in jail?!?! Someone who is free in Christ!!! And because they were free the evidence poured out in the natural realm as the keeper of the prison saw these things and was amazed!!  The keeper fell down before Paul and Silas with fear and trembling asking them what he must do to be saved. You see, in the natural the keeper appeared to be free when in reality he was the one in bondage. I can't help but think that while Paul was shipwrecked he prayed, gave thanks and glory to God and may have even worshipped Him in song.  

Then I think about the songs the Lord has blessed me with and so I sing in hopes that every step along the narrow way that He is delivering me from things such as anxiety, fear of man, loneliness and so on. It is my hope that He all the more uses the songs I sing to set multitudes of captives free as they receive the hope and encouragement such as I have and continue to. As I sing I pray that the world sees the shackles of despair falling from my flesh such as in the manner of the keeper of the prison seeing the prison doors open and the chains loosened. 

Once again; Colossians 1:17, "He is before all things and in Him all things hold together." All things hold together even when it seems they may be falling apart. Paul was shipwrecked but he was being changed from glory to glory. 2nd Corinthians 3:7-18 Job lost an entire family yet he was blessed more in the end than the beginning. Job 42:12-17

In Matthew 3:17 as soon as Jesus was baptized, He went up out of the water. Suddenly the heavens were opened, and He saw the Spirit of God, descending like a dove and resting on Him. And a voice from heaven said, "This is my beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased!!!" Yet later on down the line the Lord allowed Jesus to be beaten beyond recognition and left hanging on a cross to die. The One Who was without sin among all men of Whom had ever walked upon the face of the earth. How can this be so? It does not seem fair!! 

Mark 13:13 says, "Everyone will hate you because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved!" By enduring to the end we become a living testimony as to the glory of the Lord in Who He is and how He proves himself to be faithful. When our steps are ordered by the Lord then He can become the Author and Finisher or our Faith. All the pain and suffering of this life are temporary yet in Revelation 21 we are told the Lord makes all things new. There will be no more tears, no more sorrow and no more death. We can believe this because the tomb is empty! Death was defeated at the cross!

When a mother has a healthy delivery the baby comes out completely oblivious to how it left the womb and ended up in its mothers arms. Those Who are children of the Lord Who created the Heavens and the earth will pass from death to life and it will be far more glorious than when those who appeared out of the womb without complications to elated parents. We will be with the Father and with Jesus Who is preparing a place for us at this time. Just as a parent gets the babies room ready upon anticipation of its arrival.

The Father pursues us just by causing the sun to set upon us and by waking us up each day. We are to seek Him while He may be found. The only wise choice is to accept the sacrifice of His one and Only begotten Son and be washed in the blood of the Lamb that we also shall become righteous. The moment someone accepts Jesus as their Lord and Savior they have taken their first step!

Friday, January 26, 2018

Truth Prevails

So as many of you know if you can recall I was very anti Obama and I posted very openly about my concerns about him during his Presidency. Now we have Trump in office. This most recent election as in elections past I have felt that the choices were pretty slim pickings. I prefer Trump over Obama but In my humble opinion I hate the thought that this country can't do any better. I do not think we have had a decent President since Reagan and can we please pretend that Jimmy Carter was never in the lineup? However, it is inevitable that whoever holds the position is going to fail and will never please everyone. So whatever our issue is with any President as long as they are President we must suck it up. That does not mean we can't have an opinion and unfortunately when there are opinions there are vain arguments and much disrespect. I just hope that whatever my opinion in the future I can avoid arguments and be respectful. 

However, I mention how whoever is in office will fail and never please everyone all the time. With that said, I refer to 1 Samuel Chapters 8 & 9. The Lord was the King over Israel was rejected by the people. The Israelites chose a man (Samuel) over God. Why? Because man is fallen from the day Adam was sent out of the garden. If the Lord who is perfect is not good enough then no one will satisfy. We fail ourselves and yet we expect others to uphold our standards. When we do not get what we want from the Lord we step outside of His will and take what we want despite the consequences and then whine later because of them. So here we are today and we see history repeating itself as we say, "God Bless America."

We are very fortunate that we do not have Presidents in office until the day they die or are ran out of office while there is rioting in the streets. And there are many people who are still alive today who saw the affects of Hitler and his Nazi regime. And I personally for one feel very fortunate to not have been born in North Korea and have a raving lunatic as my leader. 

With all of this said, although there are many scriptures verses I could refer to, I will just refer to what I believe is of the utmost importance. In Luke chapter 23 Jesus was sent to the Roman Ruler Pontious Pilate because a multitude of people brought Jesus to him with false accusations in hopes that He would be executed.  As I mentioned and want to make clear Pontious Pilate was a ruler. He failed miserably as a leader because he passed the buck to Herod who was responsible for Galilee. Herod treated Jesus with cruelty by mocking Him along with the people and then placed a robe on Him which was   A symbol of the mocking. Now, here we have yet another ruler who has failed miserable. Jesus was the Only One Who was without sin yet He was treated as though He had committed horrible crimes. So much that also in Luke Chapter 23 the people chose a murderer the be freed over Jesus. Now I realize that it was prophesied that those events would happen but Pontious Pilate and Herod both made choices that neither one of them had to. If it had not been them it would have been others. 

Here's the thing……although rulers come and go and no matter how good or bad their acceptance rating is society as a whole which equally includes any leader will continue its vicious cycle until the Lord returns. Even though the Israelites rejected the Lord as King in 1 Samuel 8 & 9 and had Jesus crucified in Luke 23 there is hope! The Lord is on the throne. With every fallen leader in scripture the bad turned into good and the truth prevailed! The greatest triumph was when Jesus arose on the third day! Now as we wait Jesus prepares a place for us until the Lord returns from the clouds to set His foot on the Mount of Olives and everyone will see. Every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord and the people will be satisfied. Revelation Chapter 21  All things will be made new! There will be no more tears, no more pain nor death! And we shall see a land like no other! 

Do not put your hope in man! Trust in the Lord and you will not be disappointed even when you have evil rulers. There are stories in the Bible (It is not fiction!) of cruel leaders but those who were of the Lord submitted to their authority and what seemed to be doom was only temporary and became beautiful testimonies of the Lords faithfulness ! Not to mention we are instructed to submit to governing authorities in Romans Chapter 13. 

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Ban Cigarette Lighters Made in China

Ban Cigarette Lighters Made in China


May I be so bold as to say that I hope you will find this human interest story quite interesting and yet at the same time disturbing enough to act upon. I’ve recently been reading stories on Martyrs from all around the world. During this desire to want to learn and know more about what my brothers and sisters in Christ have endured and are continuing to endure, I stumbled across something I believe deserves to be made known to all who will listen.


I receive a magazine every month called, “Voice of the Martyrs.” I am also reading a book called, “Hearts of Fire.” It just so happens that the magazine and the book I am reading have somewhat similar stories yet only 16 years separate them; or does it? I hate to say but I believe this tragic story can be told first hand innumerable times dating even further back than the first story I am about to share with you.


The story of Ling can be found on pages 193-232 in the book entitled, “Hearts of Fire.” It was April 1994 and by the age of 30 Ling had been on the run for 10 years. She had even seen her name on a “Wanted” poster during that time. One night she decided to step outside an apartment building to make a phone call. As soon as she walked outside the police were waiting to apprehend her. She was never told of her crime but she was interrogated for 10 months while also being severely tortured regularly. She was asked all kinds of questions such as, “Who are the people you have connections with overseas? Tell us about your illegal meetings. Who gives you your books and Bibles?” Clamps were placed behind her back and situated in such a way that she heard her bones crack. She eventually passed out from the pain finding herself facedown on the floor in her cell. She could not get up to eat or use her bucket because the pain was too great. Finally authorities had no real evidence and could not get her to reveal the names of her fellow believers. So in January of 1995 they reluctantly released her.


While in this Chinese prison Lings’ job was to make cigarette lighters. The book, “Hearts of Fire” specifically says that those cigarette lighters were to be exported to the West which is the reason I’ve written this article. Ling was imprisoned a second time and her next assignment was making wigs. At the time of the writing of “Hearts of Fire” in 2003 Ling was still on the government watch list after already being imprisoned twice. This is just a brief overview of Ling’s story.


Please bear with me as I share a few details on this next story about Yang Caizhen. Her daughter tells the story in the May 2010 issue of the “Voice of the Martyrs” magazine. Yang’s daughter Esther speaks of how her mother and father were sent to prison along with her aunt and uncle. On Sunday, September 13, 2009, more than 400 Chinese officials and hired thugs stormed the grounds of the Linfen Fushan Church, destroying buildings and injuring more than 100 church members. The church is said to be able to hold 50,000 people. Esther’s father was sentenced to three-and-a-half years but his whereabouts are unknown. Although, Esther does know where her mother is and of the two year prison sentence through a re-education through labor camp. Her job is to make cigarette lighters also. Esther worries about her mom who has arthritis and feels her mother’s health will only worsen under the stress of 15-hour days working in the labor camp. There is also so much more to this story which is featured throughout most of the magazine.


Throughout my lifetime I have often heard the phrase that we need to, “Buy American.” I have to admit it was not quite that big of a deal to me where I bought something as long as I got what I wanted. Then I heard about “Child Labor Laws” and still not even until recently after reading stories such as these has it become a wake up call. I’ve been reading where children whose ages range in the single digits are being forced to roll cigarettes. Now I am faced with knowing the “real facts” and am dumfounded by this new reality check. 


The enemy who is Satan has deceived authorities in China into believing they have the right to behave as heartless barbarians and beast of the earth by torturing believers in Christ beyond comprehension. I feel that as a Christian I have a duty to expose these heinous crimes against humanity. The Christians in China do not have the freedom to speak up for themselves but here in America where our freedom is gradually slipping away we can be a voice for those who aren’t being heard.


That is why I ask you join me in this effort to expose these evil deeds of darkness by not purchasing cigarette lighters that are made in China. Also, please do not forget some wigs are manufactured in China in the same cruel fashion. The United States may import “so-called goods” from China but we as individuals have a choice on our purchases.


Think of who is prospering from the sale of cigarette lighters when you imagine the guards torturing those who do not meet production standards. You can also think of it like this as you put yourself in your current position and mindset here in America. You work day in and day out to make a living for yourself. You want the money but wish you did not have to work so hard or for so many hours. Now think of Ling and Yang who work 15 to 16 hours a day 7 days a week. They have to make production and they do not get paid. They are tortured for not making production and the people who torture them are the ones lining their pockets. Plus, they are tortured for not releasing names of their fellow brothers and sisters in Christ. Maybe you do not believe in God but you do have some form of belief in something. Do you really think the punishment these people receive for their beliefs is just? It may seem hard to believe but the truth is Christian persecution is not something from the ancient past. According to estimates, approximately 176,000 Christians are martyred each year.   


I have started a cause on Facebook called, “Ban Cigarette Lighters Made in China” and on my Blog at I have included this article under the same name in the “Articles Section.” I ask you to make people aware of this terrible situation by forwarding this email and Facebook cause on to everyone you think will be interested. You can join the Facebook cause at  


I did a survey on cigarette lighter brands and Bic along with Zippo are made in the U.S.A.. The mini Bic lighter is made in France while Scripto is made in China. Please take a stand and make a conscience effort not to buy a Scripto lighter.


One last thing I am able to do that I consider a great honor is to write to Yang Caizhen in her labor camp. I have no way of knowing if she receives my letters but I do know that the people in charge will see them. Voice of the Martyrs has sent prewritten postcards in Chinese with her address to their subscribers and now she is receiving them from all over the world. All it takes is writing your signature on it and a 98 cent stamp. In addition to the post cards I plan to use an online translator to interpret English into Chinese and send Yang letters as well.


To read more about the persecution of the saints go to and I encourage you to contact Voice of the Martyrs at the persecution website or by phone to start receiving their free monthly magazine. Hopefully, in the near future we will read of Yangs early release from the labor camp and the world-wide support she is receiving. Thank you for taking the time to read this article and I hope that you will take to heart the seriousness of this critical issue. And please remember Ling and Yang whenever you purchase a cigarette lighter.







Monday, August 3, 2009

Prophecy In The Making

By: Jennifer Sides © 2009

There has been quite a bit of profit made from the sales of doomsday movies over the course of time. Classic thrillers as some would be called. Sitting on the edge of our seats in anticipation of what is going to happen next. They hold our attention from the beginning all the way to the bitter end yet we still can’t get enough. It is as close to reality as we can get without actually moving to a warzone somewhere in the Middle East or trying to escape the horror from inside the World Trade Center as it collapses out of the clear blue sky. This would be a good time to reflect and think of those who have actually gone to battle in places such as those to stand for what is just. Recreate the scenes in your mind of the images surrounding September 11, 2001. Movies of those innocent victims along with headline news have filled our living rooms to a point where we have become more and more desensitized to the real God-given issues. The lessons God really wants us learn in such turmoil which goes a little something like this…”Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand” as declared by John the Baptist in Matthew 3:2.

Now more than ever it is time for a reality check. The very purpose and intent of this article is to serve as a wake-up call. The book of Ezekiel Chapter 3 speaks of a watchman who is to warn the house of Israel of their rebellion. If the watchman does so; then he has done his part; but if he does not; the blood of the person he did not warn is on his hands. I use this as an illustration to plead with you to wake up and respond to the call of the great commission; warning others to repent and turn to the Lord before it is to late. No one will endure the days that lie ahead without a right relationship with the Lord. Even if the predictions of End Times events do not take place during our lifetime that previous statement still holds true; because either way every knee will bow to the Lord on Judgment Day.

I truly believe if you are reading this that the Lord has a huge plan for you and I hope you will not dismiss it. I hope you will be able to decipher what you read here and put it to good use for His Kingdom and glory. I have provided a blog on my website at to hopefully get your undivided attention. Not that I want it per say; it is actually the Lord who wants it. The links as a whole are a puzzle which will develop into catastrophic events that no doomsday movie will ever be able to reveal onscreen. Those events will no doubt grab the attention of everyone on the face of the earth. Although there will be priceless special affects and insurmountable devastation the ratings won’t be of any relevance and the profits will be zilch. By that time it will probably be a cashless society anyway where piggy banks will just be a thing of the past. I am sure by then; the world will have bitten off more than it could chew.

The following information is what I believe in a nutshell. I do not expect anyone to believe the same things I do; if they believe any of it at all. Although; ultimately I do hope this information will penetrate the souls of everyone who reads it so deeply that as prophecy unravels right before their very eyes they will know Who to run and give their heart to. May this article serve as a testimony to the great commission which has been placed before me as I claim the reason for the hope I profess in Christ Jesus as the author and finisher of my faith.

Now for the pieces of the prophetic puzzle which are not in any kind of chronological order other than just what pops into my head next. I am not going to use all of the links included from the “prophetic watch” section of my blog in hopes that you will read for yourself and ponder upon them as time allows. Just remember; Satan is running out of time and is seeking to wreak havoc on us all! His leash is getting longer and longer as the pieces of the puzzle come together more vividly.

With those things said; there are many prophecies being fulfilled even as I write this article. One prophecy headline news has not taken much notice of are the preparations in Israel for construction of the Jewish temple. A Muslim mosque stands in the way of where the actual temple itself will be constructed but that is not stopping the Israeli people from building an altar for it. A recent survey shows that 64% of the Israeli people are in favor of building the temple. Revelation 11:1, 2 speaks of the temple actually being built. Three and a half years after the temple has been under construction the prophecy of Daniel 9:26 and Luke 21:20-24 will take place. Also, an internet article from the dated May 9, 2009 states that Benjamin Netanyahu will try to rebuild the Jewish temple.

Another prophecy worth bringing to your attention can be found in the ancient city of Babylon, Iraq which was ruled by King Nebuchadnezzar from around 605 B.C. to 562 B.C. Babylon, Iraq was a pet project of the late Saddam Hussein who often compared himself to his late great idol King Nebuchadnezzar. Saddam envisioned transforming the Babylonian gardens into what he hoped would be an even greater vision than that of Nebuchadnezzar. His capture eventually spoiled that dream along with many others he had for Babylon. Even so; the Hanging Gardens still made it to the top 2 spot as one of the new “seven wonders of the world” in a recent 2009 issue of Life Magazine.

Just in the past few months of this year; 2009; the U.S. State Department and the World Monuments Fund committed $700,000 to help rebuild and bring tourism to Babylon, Iraq. Surely you are thinking what I thought when I first heard this. Where on earth did they get the money for that? One of the reasons American leaders are being so generous with our tax dollars is because they are trying to make up for the devastation caused in Iraq when U. S. troops went to hunt down Saddam Hussein. Isn’t it good to know the politicians in Washington have a conscience?

Now you may be wondering, what if anything does this have to do with Bible prophecy? Just one example for that question can be found in Revelation 18:9 where we are told, “The kings of the earth who committed fornication and lived with her will weep and lament for her, when they see the smoke of her burning, standing at the distance for fear of her torment, saying, “Alas, alas, that great city of Babylon, that mighty city! For in one hour your judgment has come.” My point here is that Babylon will have to be rebuilt for that day to come. You may say, “Well, a city like that can’t be rebuilt in my lifetime.” You might want to take that thought back because actually it can. I have the perfect example that no one in their right mind can argue with. That example can be found in the United Arab Emigrants and it is called, “Dubai.” I am forty years old and in less than half that amount of time Dubai was just a forethought. Now it is a major tourist attraction that could be discussed for hours on end. Look this city up on the internet. It is simply amazing and it was built with oil money. If the city of Dubai can be built in such a short time; how much quicker will the city of Babylon become a prophecy fulfilled? I guarantee you once the project gets under way; progress will be full speed ahead just as the Tower of Babel.

On July 14, 2009, The New York Times online made reference to a scripture of prophecy found in Revelation 16:12. It seems that the Euphrates River in Iraq is drying up and turning to desert while destroying wheat, rice and barley fields along with fishing. It is affecting all of society in Iraq as even sheiks and top diplomats are at a loss on dealing with the devastation. Although Revelation 16:12 mentions the Euphrates River drying up; I do not believe the sixth bowl has been poured out yet. What I do believe is the Euphrates River drying up is an early warning sign from God on what more to expect in the not so distant future.

Now without using any of the links provided in my blog I am going to discuss the antichrist. I have no idea who the antichrist is. I can only guesstimate. Personally; I do not rule anybody out. There are three key factors that I want to bring to your attention. I believe these factors are crucial to everyone on the face of the planet. I also believe this is the order of those crucial facts I am about to discuss. One example can be found in Revelation 13:3, 4 where the beast receives a wound so severe that it seems there is no possible way the beast could have survived. This is a counterfeit to the picture of Jesus when he rose again after three days from being crucified. Thomas had to see His scars before he would believe it was Jesus. Many people who see the beast and his wound will worship him because he lives. Please whatever you do, do not fall for this!

My second point can be found in 2nd Thessalonians 2:3, 4 where it says, “Let no one deceive you by any means; for the Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.” Do not worship anyone who sits in the temple and claims he is God! He is the antichrist! He will probably have received his wound by then; which will be how he gains access to such a high honor.

Last but not least, the Bible warns of antichrists and tells you how you know one when you see one. There are several places this information can be found so you will know how to avoid the antichrists wicked schemes. One thing is for sure... I am telling you there is no doubt…. Jesus himself will not appear until we see him coming from the clouds with His angels as described in Revelation 14:14, 16. This illustration can also be found in Matthew 24:29, 31. 1st Corinthians 15:52 says that we will all be changed at the last trumpet. There are seven trumpets and they are all referred to throughout the book of Revelation. For example if you see the seventh trumpet mentioned once; do not think that is the only time you will see it mentioned.

Another sign of the times can be taken from Daniel 12:4 where we read, “But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.” The most recent proof I have of that prophecy is from an article dated July 9, 2009 where we are informed that British researchers have taken stem cells from an embryo and created human sperm. They have heads, they have tails, and they move. They have all the essential qualities for creating life. The aim, we are told, is to revolutionize the treatment of infertility. Now men are no longer needed to create babies but will they have a soul?

A cashless society has slowly been creeping onto the scene of our every day lives for several years now. We can see it in a variety of ways whether through credit cards or toll roads. Banks giving credit to people with bad credit has caused a snowball effect all across the economic boards on Wall Street. Government bailouts have been paid out to a point of no return. Companies and movie stars alike are going bankrupt. They are spending money like a child eats candy. California’s gone bankrupt. Unemployment rates are rising with no end in sight. America’s in debt. Iceland has gone bankrupt. China and Russia are requesting a one world currency. is pushing for Mexico, Canada and the United States to join their currencies. Where does it all end and what does it all mean? The truth; it will not end until it is finished. It will not be finished until Satan is conquered once and for all. What it means and what it is all boiling down to can be found in Revelation 13:15-18 where it says, “He was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed. He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.”

Another major sign that the end times are rapidly approaching can be found in the morals of people as a whole. Things that go against the will of God are being accepted to the point that laws are being passed in the favor of such immoral acts of rebellion. Pornographic images are being placed on billboard signs. States have begun passing homosexual marriage laws even though 1st Corinthians 6:9 says, “The homosexual will not inherit the Kingdom of Heaven.” Abortion has been legalized. Precious lives that can’t speak for themselves are being murdered day in and day out!

This just about sums up a few of the thoughts I have about end time prophecies at the moment. I may update this article at a later date to reflect newer links posted in the future. In the meantime, watch therefore and be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect; Matthew 24:44.

Seek Him while He may be found,

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Israel In Prophesy

Israel in Prophecy
By: Jennifer Sides

Declaring their dependence on May 14, 1948; Israel is the world’s only Jewish state with Jerusalem being the capital and largest city. They are the 100th smallest country in the world. Speaking of Israel; Ezekiel 36:11 says, “I will multiply upon you man and beast, and they shall increase and bear young; I will make you inhabited as in former times, and do better for you than at your beginnings. Then you shall know that I am the Lord.” I believe many of the links my blog provides in the “Israel” section confirm the Lord is bestowing blessings upon His chosen people beyond measure. I will be using a few of those links as examples but I encourage you to be zealous and search out these truths in scripture first hand.

Proof that man would be multiplied upon the land just as Ezekiel 36:11 described began taking place soon after Israel declared their dependence in 1948 with the population increasing from 800,000 to 2,000,000 by 1958. Currently as of 2009 the population of Israel is 7,411,000. In 1952 an estimated 200,000 Jews who infiltrated back into Israel brought with them no possessions and lived in tents. Recently there has been even more confirmation the prophecy of Ezekiel 36:11 is being fulfilled with the “American Dream” slowly slipping away from the fingertips of North Americans as many of them have begun seeking refuge in Israel. For the first time in history the Israeli economy is doing better than the American economy with the Israeli economy growing an average of 5% a year for the past five years. Israel now has the second-largest number of startup companies in the world after the United States and the largest number of NASDAQ-listed companies outside North America. In 2007, Israel had the 44th-highest gross domestic product and the 22nd-highest gross domestic product per capita (at purchasing power parity) at US$232.7 billion and US$33, 299, respectively.

Among other list of impressive accomplishments Israel is considered one of the most advanced countries in Southwest Asia and the Middle East in economic and industrial development. Their chief exports are fruits, vegetables, pharmaceuticals, military technology, and diamonds. Israel is a world leader in water conservation, geothermal energy, cutting edge technology and much more! Israel ranks highest among Middle Eastern countries on the UN human development index and also freedom of the press. Tourism, especially religious tourism, plays another important part in Israel with 2008 being a record breaking year with over 3,000,000 tourists. That is a 30% increase from the year 2007.

Now we all know how bad the global economy is doing as a whole yet Israel seems to be picking up steam at a steady pace. They even have a company called “Agritech” which has taken on a major role to solve the global food crisis. I would say that is quite a huge feet for the 100th smallest state in the world! Israel is like David taking on Goliath in the midst of this global economic turmoil! The list of Israel’s accomplishments goes on and on. I encourage you to read the links provided about Israel and really try to understand what is taking place right before the world’s very eyes. I have no doubt you will see first hand the Lord at work during these very troublesome and uncertain times. If you think about it Israel has only been a state for 61 years yet they are doing exceedingly well for such a small country. “Why is that?” some might say. It is because the Lord promised He would do it! Remember that 200,000 Israelis started out with no earthly possessions and lived in tents?!?! That is simply a miracle! Amen!

Now I have heard it said and it makes sense to me that when Matthew 24:32 says, (“Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near”) that the fig tree represents Israel becoming a state. Chapter 24 as a whole refers to the tribulation, coming of the Son of man and no one knowing the day or the hour. In verse 34 it says that, “This generation will by no means pass away until all these things take place.” I personally believe this means the generation which saw Israel become a state will not pass away until the 7 years of Tribulation takes place that is mentioned in the book of Revelation.

There is more scriptural confirmation that Israel will be the productive country foretold about in Ezekiel 36:11. It can be found just two chapters over in Ezekiel 38:12, 13 with chapters 38 and 39 being the main focus as a whole. I encourage you to read those chapters since I am not going to cover it all…just the main points I am trying to make. There will be countries who will invade Israel in verses 12 and 13 of Chapter 38. There mission will be to attack the Israeli people and acquire their earthly goods. It says in verse 4 of Chapter 38 that those countries will have a hook in their mouths and be lead out with all their armies. I am not sure how those armies will be lead out but I do have three scenarios.

First of all, it may have to do with the global economy getting much worse for those countries and Israel being much more productive. Remember; Israel is already one of the most productive countries in the Middle East. This is no different than the Palestinians coveting and trying to take land from the Israelites that does not belong to them; which brings me to my second point. Many countries have taken it upon themselves to tell Israel how to run their country by giving them ultimatums on how they need to stop building settlements in their own God given territory. Even more disheartening is an article dated June 22, 2009 on the website proclaiming the results of a poll taken recently by Americans. It claims the percentage of Americans growing impatient with the Israeli people building settlements on their own territory is on the rise. This is just another example of how America has been shaken off the foundation of its’ Godly heritage. A world-wide percentage of people along with so many of the countries leaders who are already rallying against Israel to divide their land may spark a war far greater than one that may occur with Iran.

Third, there is no doubt tensions are flaring up in Israel like never before. Recent developments confirm Israel is working on offensive and defensive strategies to face whatever might happen in the not so distant future. On May 31, 2009 Israel held its biggest civil defense drill in their history. In recent weeks Benjamin Netanyahu has been asking world leaders for permission to fly over their countries to invade Iran over their nuclear facilities. Israel wants to take out those areas of Iran before Iran tries to take them out. God only knows; Israel could fly over air space that a country did or did not grant them permission to fly over and that country along with several others may use it as an excuse to attack Israel and attempt to take everything they own. A good example to illustrate this point would be how it was said recently that Saudi Arabia granted Israel permission to fly in their air space to attack Iran. On July 7, 2009 Saudi Arabia denied the claims. So what would’ve happened if Israel had flown over Saudi Arabia before the claims had been denied? Also, on July 18, 2009 Israeli warships rehearsed for Iran attacks in the Red Sea.

I have every reason to believe there is the grave possibility that Israel will follow through with their plans to disarm Iran. Those beliefs stem from previous attempts in Israel’s past to launch similar attempts. Here are a few examples. On June 7, 1981, Israel heavily bombed Iraq's Osirak nuclear reactor in Operation Opera, disabling it. Israeli intelligence had suspected Iraq was intending to use it for weapons development. In 1982, Israel intervened in the Lebanese Civil War to destroy the bases from which the Palestine Liberation Organization launched attacks and missiles at northern Israel. On September 6, 2007, the Israeli Air Force launched Operation Orchard in Syria, bombing what it suspected to be a nuclear site.

There are many signs to focus on when it comes to end times events. Most importantly remember that the main focus will revolve around Jerusalem, Israel which is the center point of much of Bible prophecy. With those things said, I believe there will be at least two major wars between Israel and those countries mentioned in Ezekiel Chapters 38 and 39 during our lifetime or generation. Yes, the Bible says, “There will be wars and rumors of war” in Mark 13:7 but there are specific wars to watch for. No doubt there will be the war of Daniel 9:25-27 which takes place in the middle of the 7 ½ years that will mark the beginning of the “Great Tribulation” spoken of in Matthew chapter 24. Reference is also made to it in Luke 21:20-24. It states, “But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then know the desolation is near. Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains, let those who are in the midst of her depart, and let not those who are in the country enter her. For these are the days of vengeance, that all things which were written may be fulfilled. But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! For there will be great distress in the land and wrath upon this people. And they will fall by the edge of the sword, and be led away captive into all nations. And Jerusalem will be trampled by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.”

As I mentioned in the previous paragraph; Luke 21:20 says that once Jerusalem is surrounded by armies the desolation will be near. The desolation it is referring to can be found in Daniel 9:27 (see also Matthew 24:15) after the middle of the 7 years of tribulation which will also be in the middle of the 7 year peace covenant Israel makes with many. After Jerusalem is made desolate the Antichrist will be revealed as stated in 2nd Thessalonians 2:3-4. He will do so by sitting as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God. 2nd Thessalonians states in verse 2:2,3 that Christ will not come until the falling away comes first, and the son of man is revealed. “Falling away” in the Greek means military rebellion. Therefore, Christ will not return until the armies have surrounded and made Jerusalem desolate. Without knowing what “falling away” means I believe it is
still clear those events have to take place before Jesus returns. I believe Matthew, Mark and Luke all give the exact order of the events which will take place.

I promise I am not trying to be confusing on this next example. I just see a couple of different scenarios on the following two verses. The second or first war, it is really hard to say, is the one I referred to in Ezekiel Chapters 38 and 39 which may also be tied into the final war in Revelation 20:6-10 where God and Magog surround the camp of the saints and the beloved city Jerusalem. I have heard it said those two wars are one in the same. Whatever the case may be that war could happen after the 7 ½ years of tribulation. One thing is for sure – we need to be watching for the signs of Jesus coming. They were given to us when the disciples ask Jesus specifically in Matthew 24:3, “What will be the sign of Your coming and the end of the age?” Jesus answered them at that moment because He did not want them to be blind about what the future would hold. Now I know the things I have written about in this article did not take place during their lifetime but each of them did have to face great personal tribulations of their own as 11 out of 12 of them were martyred. We may not know the day or the hour in which Jesus will return just as He does not; but in Matthew chapter 24 we are cautioned to watch and be ready.

In closing, just remember Luke 21:35-36 says, “It will come as a snare on all those who dwell, on the face of the earth. Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.” Whatever you do don’t be like the scoffers who in 2nd Peter 3:3 walked according to their own lusts saying, “Where is the promise of His coming?” We are living in a day and age where we can’t afford to rule out what may be the very signs we were instructed to watch for! We are also instructed in Psalm 122:6 to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. The first 3 ½ years of the tribulation may seem like Jerusalem has peace once and for all but it will really be like a smokescreen. Satan is running out of time and is devising a plan in which he will use the antichrist along with many others to try and fulfill his evil schemes. You can’t be a Christian and not be for the Jews. We as Christians have been grafted into the vine as described in Romans Chapter 11 having become one in Christ ultimately known as the “Bride of Christ.” So I encourage you to pray for the peace of Jerusalem which will not be until all things are made new in Revelation Chapter 21 when the New Jerusalem comes down from heaven. He will then wipe away every tear, there will be no more death, no more pain, or sorrow, nor crying! Amen!

In the meantime -
Watch and pray,