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Conservatism mixed with a little end time theology

Discipling Phases of Jesus

Throughout the New Testament gospels, Jesus walks his followers through several phases on their journey towards maturity.  As we witness Him working in their lives in Scripture, we are able to see and recognize where He is leading us in our own walk with Him.

Studying these phases have helped me understand why I am the way I am and why I struggle with pursuing many spiritual disciplines.  Read on to see if you can trace your ‘roots’ to some of these examples in Scripture!

Phase 1 is the “Spiritual Disciplines” phase.

In this phase, we can see a marked difference between Jews and Gentiles.  Jewish boys at a very early age were sent to a synagogue where they studied under a Rabbi for years.  This gave them a solid foundation in the following essential qualities we must develop in our own lives:

  1. Memorization of OT Scripture
  2. Scripture meditation
  3. Prayer
  4. Fasting

When these Jewish boys came to know Jesus, they had already developed and had history in scripture and many of these disciplines.

If you contrast this with us Gentiles….well, we are a little different.  When the Apostle Paul was commissioned in his ministry to the Gentiles, he found no such discipline in their lives.  Not one of them had memorized scripture or had any history of prayer and fasting.  Imagine training up pastors with this background!  If you are like me, I can certainly trace my difficulties in these disciplines back to my roots!

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Filed under: 1st Commandment, Signs of the Times

2 Components of Salvation

There are 2 components to Christian salvation and both must be present at the time of conversion.

Faith + Repentance = Salvation

Mark 1:15

14 Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, 15 and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.” (ESV)

Without these 2 working together, salvation is not guaranteed.

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Filed under: 1st Commandment, Signs of the Times

Russia Ready to Pull Nuclear Trigger on ‘Aggressors’

It’s not the weapon I worry about; it’s those behind the weapon that must be contained.  You know, the ones able to pull the trigger.

It turns out Russia is ready to fire nuclear weapons pre-emptively – meaning, they will nuke someone who appears aggressive or is a threat to them before they can even attack.

Doesn’t that just give you the warm-fuzzies?

Russia is weighing changes to its military doctrine that would allow for a “preventive” nuclear strike against its enemies — even those armed only with conventional weapons.

The news comes just as American diplomats are trying to get Russia to cut down its nuclear stockpile, and put the squeeze on Iran’s suspect nuclear program.

Here’s my question: How do they define the term, “Aggressors.”

If Russia labels a nation an aggressor as quickly as the Left in America labels someone a racist, we could be in for some serious fireworks.

As if this isn’t scary enough, Nikolai Patrushev, the secretary of the Kremlin’s security council, left-open the door to even bomb local targets within or near Russia:

What’s more, Patrushev said, Russia is revising the rules for the employment of nukes to repel conventionally armed attackers, “not only in large-scale, but also in a regional and even a local war…In critical national security situations, one should also not exclude a preventive nuclear strike against the aggressor.”

As the author puts it, “If I were in Georgia — or in any other country Russia considers part of its sphere of influence — that formulation would make me pretty anxious.”

No, kidding.

Bringing it back home, hasn’t Barack Hussein Obama held dialogues with Russia in an attempt to have them reduce their nuclear weapons?  I don’t think this was on his agenda.  He’s even having trouble coaxing Russia into Iranian sanctions (yet again).

It’s not too late to re-think that Nobel Peace Prize 😉

Filed under: Media/News, Signs of the Times

Obama Won the Nobel Peace Joke Prize

I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

Headline from the Washington Post (among pretty much every other news site): Barack Hussein Obama Wins Nobel Peace Prize.

Are they just handing these awards out for fun now?

“Hey, look, I was eating my bowl of Fruit Loops this morning and in the box I noticed a Nobel Peace Prize.  Sweet.”

So, what was behind the Committee’s decision?

President Obama was awarded the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize Friday for his work to improve international diplomacy and rid the world of nuclear weapons.

The committee praised Obama for his “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples” during his nine months in office and singled out for special recognition Obama’s call for a world free of nuclear weapons.

Obama is unable to clean up his home town of Chicago – yet, they give him credit for improving cooperation among the nations?

Oh, you mean by partnering with terrorists, reducing moral of the troops from his own country (wouldn’t your moral fall if your leader preached defeat?), and sucking up to the Saudi King.

Have you heard that news yet?  Here’s Obama’s new plan for Afghanistan:

Bowing to the reality that the Taliban is too ingrained in Afghanistan’s culture to be entirely defeated, the administration is prepared, as it has been for some time, to accept some Taliban role in parts of Afghanistan, the official said.

That could mean paving the way for Taliban members willing to renounce violence to participate in a central government — though there has been little receptiveness to this among the Taliban. It might even mean ceding some regions of the country to the Taliban.

Ugh.  This leaves such a bad taste in my mouth.

Switching gears a bit here, I want to briefly address the notion that BHO could possibly be the Antichrist.  Some members from the HotAir community have commented on this possibility in light of this news.

Is that reasonable?  Yes, given the circumstances.  Is it 100% true?  I don’t think so.  When the Antichrist comes, there will be no denying it at all.  However, I do believe that the current administration provides the best picture for what the environment will look like when the Antichrist comes.  He will bring a false peace – even ending terrorism – but, it will only be a peace on the surface.

There will be mandatory world-wide worship of the Antichrist.  Jesus said the Great Tribulation would not happen until after we see the abomination of desolation – which happnes when the Antichrist goes into the Temple (which is not yet built), takes off his mask of peace, and declares that everyone must worship him.

For this to happen, it requires the watering-down of society to such a degree that what we are witnessing today will look like a faithful time in history.  The Antichrist can’t just show up and demand worship now; it wouldn’t work as a majority of people would not follow him (although some probably would right now).  Sin must increase, tolerance must increase, and our moral standards must be brought so low that people will be easily manipulated by a man with charisma and effective communication skills.

And, Barack Obama has some of those characteristics – especially behind a teleprompter.  But, there are a few key elements missing to confirm the true identity of the Antichrist.

Is the Antichrist alive on the earth?  Could be.  I think the most important thing is to have eyes that see and ears to hear.  It is crucial to develop a history in God now before it is too late.  The End Times – the tribulation, the Antichrist, the judgments of God on the Antichrist – is not something you want to cram for the night before.  Get it now so that you are prepared later.

Or, as Jesus puts it in His parable in Matthew 25, show wisdom and get oil in your lamp so you are not caught unprepared.

Well, Mr. Barack Hussein Obama.  Congrats.  My hats off to you for winning the respectable cheap Nobel Peace Prize for the accomplishments of JACK and SQUAT 😉

Filed under: Media/News, Revelation, Signs of the Times

Recent Events at the UN Summit in Pittsburgh

There has been a plethora of new (and somewhat frightening) happenings coming from the UN Summit.  Here’s a brief look at the latest news:

  • There are some strong leaders left in the world – They’re just absent from the US right now.  Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu actually showed some gusto by condemning the UN for allowing the Iranian president to speak and brought forth evidence of the Holocaust (which is only being denied by the crack-nut Ahmadinejad).
  • Guess where this quote came from: “We are content and happy if  Barack Obama can stay forever as the President of the United States of America.”  Joe Biden?  ACORN?  Matt Lauer?  This was from Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi.  Isn’t that something?  Wicked dictators accused of mass murder and genocide love Obama.  Gadhafi also referred to BHO as “our son” and “our Obama.”  Touching.
  • Our fearless leader is calling for a world without nuclear bombs.  Fortunately, the world is allowing us to lead the way and disarm first.  Great!  Are you feelin’ all ‘hopeychangey’ yet?

In his first appearance before the group, Obama promised the U.S. would reach out in “a new era of engagement based on mutual interest and mutual respect,” but he also wagged a rhetorical finger at leaders who spend much of their time at international gatherings excoriating the U.S. He said “an almost reflexive anti-Americanism” that swept the globe under the administration of his predecessor, George W. Bush, is not “an excuse for collective inaction.”

“Nothing is easier than blaming others for our troubles and absolving ourselves of responsibility for our choices and our actions,” he said.

Unbelievable.

If blaming others is such a poor choice of action, why have you [Barack Hussein Obama] repeatedly blamed Bush for the economic collapse you inherited caused?  And, the economy is just the tip of the iceberg.

Folks, the world is rapidly changing.  We are not living in our Grandparents’ America.

In the Bible, there were numerous signs that pointed to the 1st coming of Jesus; and, Jesus had strong words for those who were unable to see the times and missed His 1st coming.  There are even more signs pointing to the 2nd coming of Christ.  There will be a one-world government and a false ‘peace’ over the nations to set the stage for the most radical period in human history.

When exactly will it happen?  It is correct to state we don’t know the day nor the hour.  But, that doesn’t mean we can’t discern the time and the season.  In fact, we are commanded by Jesus to know the hour in which we live.

Jesus could come in 5 years or He could come in 50.  I don’t know.  But, I can tell you that the level of wickedness in the earth will be matched by a praying church moving in authority as it grows in love for Jesus.  The whole plan to reveal Jesus at the 2nd coming is in deep partnership with His Church.  These in themselves are some of the easiest signs to discern.

God is raising up a prayer movement of people who agree with the plans in His heart and will stand firm until the end.

Luke 21:36 – “But keep on the alert at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things [coming sins] that are about to take place, and to stand [in victory] before the Son of Man.”

Filed under: 1st Commandment, Economy, Media/News, Revelation, Signs of the Times

Removing ‘Christmas’ From Textbooks

The watering down of our society continues.

The liberal worldview has removed ‘God’ from the Pledge of Allegiance; it has removed prayer from schools.  Now, it wants to remove the word ‘Christmas’ from school textbooks.  And, this is happening in Texas, of all places:

A proposal for a new social studies curriculum for Texas public schools removes the word “Christmas” in a sixth-grade lesson.

The draft proposal being considered by the State Board of Education removes the word Christmas in a section on culture.  The section now instructs students to explain the significance of religious holidays…The proposal deletes Christmas and adds Diwali, a Hindu festival (emphasis mine).

A person can be open-minded so long as it removes any sort of Christian language from the discussion.

Imagine the sixth-grader who is reading this textbook.  Not only has Christmas been removed, but they’ve probably also added positive discussion on abortion and same-sex marriage.

The moral compass of our nation is being degraded at an increasing rate.  Yet, all of this is in context to Jesus’ battle plan for the last generation.

It’s not just in textbooks, it’s in our vocabulary as well.  Happy Holidays.  Season’s Greetings.  These phrases have replaced Merry Christmas so as to not offend anyone.

I say, let the offense continue!

Jesus will continue to be a source of contention until He returns.  There is no mistake in who we claim Him to be:  The Christ, the Messiah, the God-Man; His Name is Faithful and True and He judges righteously.  He is terrifying yet wonderful.

Jesus, we long for Your return.  Come make the wrong things right.

Merry-early-Christmas everyone 🙂

Filed under: 1st Commandment, Media/News, Signs of the Times

Which Message Is It?

It seems like every other chapter in the Old Testament dealt with Israel defending itself from another nation.

Sometimes, the message went forth that the Lord was for the city and would defend it from its enemies; at other times, the message was the exact opposite and the Lord would hand the nation over to its enemies.

In Isaiah 36 and 37, the Assyrian King Sennacherib was the foe.  The people of Judah, under King Hezekiah, fasted and prayed to the Lord for deliverance, and the Lord answered and delivered the city.  Isaiah 37:36 –

Then the angel of the LORD went out and put to death a hundred and eighty-five thousand men in the Assyrian camp. When the people got up the next morning—there were all the dead bodies!

Imagine waking up to that scene!  There was much celebration and praise given to Yahweh that day.

Fast forward just two chapters to Isaiah 39, and this time the message goes forth that when the Babylonian King comes, the city will be delivered over to its enemies.  Listen to the warning in Isaiah 39:6 –

The time will surely come when everything in your palace, and all that your fathers have stored up until this day, will be carried off to Babylon. Nothing will be left, says the LORD.

So, what happens?  In Jeremiah 28, the nation of Babylon lays siege to Jerusalem.  The false prophet Hananiah goes out proclaiming the deliverance of the Lord.  Jeremiah receives the true message from the Lord and counters the message of Hananiah: The Lord will deliver Jerusalem into the hands of its enemies.

This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: I will put an iron yoke on the necks of all these nations to make them serve Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and they will serve him.

Now, imagine those who believed the message of the false prophet!  “Peace and Safety!” he cried, when that message was for an earlier time in Israel’s history.  The true message for the day was to flee the city for trouble was coming.

What time are we living in?

I think the better question should be: What should our response be?  America has experienced a financial shaking.  There are rogue nations – Iran, North Korea – developing nuclear technology with the intent on harming the US.  There are famines, fires, and new pandemics (the Swine Flu) breaking out.

I just can’t see the message relevant to today’s Christians being one of peace, safety, and prosperity.  Our response should be one of Deuteronomy 28-29 and 2 Chronicles 7:14.  We need to pray, fast, and seek the Lord now – it is vital we develop a history in God while we still can.

If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

This isn’t something we want to cram for the night before.  It’s time to move past conferences that teach us how to grin and bear our quiet times and pursue walking out the Sermon on the Mount lifestyle before everything falls apart.

Is my heart ready to stay steadfast in love to Jesus no matter what is happening around me?

Jesus, give me strength to do this!  I am so weak!  Give me grace to fast, grace to pray.

God’s dealing with individuals is very different from how He deals with nations.  I can be in church on Sunday and feel the presence of God and then the next day America could be invaded by another country.  This wouldn’t change at all my experience the previous day.

I am no prophet and yet these things stand out to me.

If my response from the message that has gone out puts in me even more fire to run hard after Jesus…….

Seems to me to be the message of the day. 😉

Filed under: 1st Commandment, Signs of the Times

Invitation to Greatness

I’ve been posting a lot of news lately.  It’s a good time to step back for a moment and focus on the Word.

Jesus has offered to His people the chance to be called great in the Kingdom of God.  He opens the opportunity to anyone – it doesn’t matter on the size of ones ministry or how well known we are.   We may never be known at all in our church, city, workplace…but we have an open door for greatness in His eyes.

Jesus states in Matthew 5:17-19 –

Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets.  I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled.

Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

A quick read through the Old Testament will confirm that the Jewish community throughout history did not live up to nor understand 100% the commands that God gave them.  Jesus came to express the full intent of what God intended the commands to be.

The law won’t be fully expressed – or fulfilled – until  the smallest details and tiniest parts of the law are fully embodied in the lives of His people.

Jesus then makes the call to be great and opens it up to ‘whoever’ – to anyone – whoever keeps the most minute part of My commandments, and then teaches others to do the same, will be considered great in the Kingdom of Heaven.

God is looking for people that aren’t thinking of ways to escape obedience; they are trying to find ways to enter into the power of God to fully walk out the least intention of what God meant when He gave those commandments.

But, there’s a flip side: Those who break the least of these commands and then teaches others to do the same will be considered least in the Kingdom of God.  They will be saved, they will have the Holy Spirit, and their experience will be glorious.  But, they will be on the least end of the spectrum of the Glory of God being manifest through them and the Lord using them for His purposes in the age to come.

This has to be one of the most eye-opening and even terrifying teachings: I do not want to be considered least in the Kingdom of God.  Jesus appealed to rewards numerous times when motivating people to obey Him – Lord, forgive me for the time I have wasted!  Yet, thank You for the chance to run the race with even more vigor.

Teaching others doesn’t have to be on a platform; this is done at home, in small groups, with friends – whomever God gives us influence – what is it are we calling them to?

Jesus, give us strength to obey You in the private areas of our life, to seek to obey Your commands out of a loving heart and then go the next step and encourage others to do the same.

Filed under: 1st Commandment, Signs of the Times

New Polls and the ELCA’s Controversial Vote

The Right Revelation Podcast!

New Rasmussen polls reveal what Americans think of the direction the US is headed; the Chicago Cubs have a new owner; and, the ELCA makes a historic and controversial vote.

Also, a brief discussion on the gladness of Jesus.

Duration: 13 minutes 54 seconds

Filed under: Health Care, Media/News, Podcasts, Signs of the Times

End-of-the-World Investing

As this blog does concern itself with end-time theology, it was impossible to pass this up:

What if the world ended in 2050?

Never fear, MarketWatch has your investment strategy covered!  Either that, or the author had a little too much time on his hands when he wrote this article titled, “6 Keys to Investing for Doomsday.”

What’s your investment strategy if you know you might die on Dec. 21, 2012? Or possibly this year after getting a negative diagnosis from an oncologist? Or maybe not till 2050 when the United Nations says global population will be 50% higher (rising from 6 billion now to 9 billion), while demand for energy, oil, gas and coal doubles and the global supply of those commodities remains relatively constant?

The article is full of sarcasm, for sure.  Yet, you can’t escape the feeling that in the back of the author’s mind there is a sense he hasn’t fully eliminated the possibility of the world ending.

Just in case, he gives 6 steps to invest for ‘Doomsday,’ and here is a summary of them:

  1. Greed is really good – Create a protective wall of money and resources around you and your family;
  2. Invest in Wall Street – they define the word ‘greed.’  So, if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em;
  3. Frugality, Hoarding, and Stockpiling – give in to the ‘packrat’ that lives inside of you;
  4. Subsistence farming – Anyone know how to gut a chicken?;
  5. Self Defense – You can never have enough guns and ammo;
  6. Accept Death – even after all of this, you might die anyways.

When it comes to end-of-the-world investing, it’s probably not better to put off for tomorrow what you can do today.

My advice would be to start investing for the end now.  And, a good place to start might be reading Matthew chapters 24 and 25.

“Know the lesson of the fig tree” 🙂

Filed under: Media/News, Revelation, Signs of the Times