Wednesday, December 9, 2015
79 percent of evangelicals believe ‘violence across the Middle East is a sign that the end times are nearer’
Is the return of Jesus Christ getting closer? According to a survey conducted by the Brookings Institute’s Center for Middle East Policy entitled “American Attitudes Toward The Middle East And Israel“, 79 percent of all evangelical Christians in America believe that “the unfolding violence across the Middle East is a sign that the end times are nearer”. In addition, the survey also discovered that evangelical Christians are also far more likely to be pro-Israel than the population as a whole, and most of them believe that Israel will control more territory than it currently possesses before Jesus comes back. Many “secular” Americans may find this strange, but evangelical Christians really do view everything that is going on in the Middle East through the lens of Bible prophecy. The vast majority of evangelicals truly believe that Jesus is actually coming back to our world, and most of them are fully convinced that Israel is going to play a leading role in the events of the last days.
Before I get to more of the survey results, I should disclose that I am a pro-Israel evangelical Christian that believes that the return of Jesus Christ will happen within my lifetime. So this survey was very interested in finding out what people like me think. With that in mind, here are more of the findings with my comments in italics after each point…
-Benjamin Netanyahu (16 percent) is the world leader that evangelicals admire most, followed by Ronald Reagan (11 percent) and Barack Obama (10 percent).
Comments: It should be no surprise that many evangelicals admire Benjamin Netanyahu more than any U.S. politician. But how did Barack Obama get 10 percent? Have 10 percent of all evangelical Christians in America gone completely insane?
–39 percent of evangelicals say that Israel has too little influence on U.S. politics, while 23 percent say that Israel has too much influence on U.S. politics.
Comments: These numbers are much different than for the population as a whole. Overall, the survey found that 37 percent of all Americans believe that Israel has too much influence on U.S. politics, and only 18 percent of all Americans believe that Israel has too little influence on U.S. politics.
–55 percent of evangelicals say that “a candidate’s position on Israel matters a lot to them” when deciding who to vote for.
Comments: I know that this is true for me. One of the very first things that I look for when evaluating any candidate is their position on Israel. If I find out that a candidate is anti-Israel, I completely rule out casting a vote for that candidate. Unfortunately, that means that there are hardly any politicians that I can actually vote for.
–81 percent of evangelicals believe that Jesus will return to this planet.
Comments: So what are the other 19 percent thinking? Haven’t they read the end of the book? The Bible tells us over and over that Jesus is coming back. Sadly, I believe that this is just part of a larger trend. The church in America is increasingly moving away from interpreting the Bible literally, and that is a very bad thing.
–75 percent of evangelicals believe that “things need to happen in Israel before Christ returns”.
Comments: This is very consistent with what the Bible says. The Bible indicates that the nation of Israel will play a starring role in the last days, and what we have seen so far is just the beginning.
–63 percent of evangelicals believe that “for the rapture or Second Coming to occur it is essential for current-
day Israel to include all the land they believe was promised to Biblical Israel in the Old Testament”.
day Israel to include all the land they believe was promised to Biblical Israel in the Old Testament”.
I definitely agree that Israel will end up possessing more land than it does right now. But I think that the wording of this question probably threw a lot of believers off. Were they referring to a pre-Tribulation rapture, a mid-Tribulation rapture, a pre-Wrath rapture or a rapture that comes at the end of the Tribulation?
Needless to say, these survey numbers are really surprising a lot of people – especially those that happen to be on the left end of the political spectrum. For instance, just consider the following comments from Politico editor Susan Glasser…
“These numbers are very striking on the end of days theology that these respondents claim motivate them,” Politico editor Susan Glasser said during a panel discussion after the release of the survey at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.“Some of these numbers are really stark,” she added. “I mean, the percentage of American Evangelicals, according to your survey, who believe the end of times is nigh, is kind of eye popping, at least for secular America or blue America.”
And I am sure that some of these statistics are going to provoke some very strong reactions from my regular readers as well.
You have seen what I think, so now it is your turn.
What is your response to the numbers that you have just seen? Please feel free to join the discussion by posting a comment below…
Credit to End of the American Dream
University of Mississippi renames ‘A Grand Ole Christmas’ to ‘Hotty Toddy Holiday’ so it won’t offend
In an effort to create a more inclusive environment, the University of Mississippi renamed its annual campus event “A Grand Ole Christmas” to “Hotty Toddy Holiday.”
For more than six years, the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) has celebrated the start of the Christmas season with a festive event called “A Grand Ole Christmas.” This year, however, the event was renamed “Hotty Toddy Holiday” in an effort to be more inclusive.
“We really wanted to change the atmosphere from last year and that would explain the name change,” Kayp Maye, co-director of special events for the Student Activities Association (SAA), told News Watch 99. “‘Grand Ole Christmas’ connoted too much Christianity on campus and so we wanted to have a more inclusive environment for the holidays this year.”
In addition to the name change, Maye noted that the official colors of this year’s festivities were red, blue, and silver, which he described as part of an effort to “attract a more mature audience” with a Winter Wonderland, rather than Christmas, theme.
Yet in an apparent contrast to the school’s professed pursuit of a more mature audience, activities included ice-skating, pictures with Santa, and arts & crafts. The event even had a mascot—a life-sized gingerbread man named “Gingy” reminiscent of the characters that regularly patrol theme parks such as Disney World.
The choice of “Hotty Toddy Holiday” as the new name is a reference to a popular cheer used by Ole Miss football fans, but its origins are difficult to trace, according to AL.com.
One explanation is that the wording is a corruption of the original cheer of “Heighty! Tighty!” but many also believe its acceptance was catalyzed by its similarity to “hot toddy,” a warmed-up whiskey drink some see as evoking the stadium’s “party” atmosphere.
Despite the SAA’s determination to disassociate this year’s event from the Christmas holiday, though, the celebration climaxed with the annual tree lighting, which still involved a “Christmas” tree, albeit without the traditional color scheme or ornamentation for which such decorations are best known.
Campus Reform reached out to spokespersons for both Ole Miss and the SAA, but had not received a response from either office by press time.
Credit to Eu Timeshttp://www.eutimes.net/2015/12/university-of-mississippi-renames-a-grand-ole-christmas-to-hotty-toddy-holiday-so-it-wont-offend/
Judicial Watch Exposes the ISIS Invasion In April of 2015
ISIS Targets Identified
The ISIS Base Camp Is Part of a Much Bigger Terrorist Organization
Mexican/Middle Eastern Terrorists Are Equipped with Military Grade Weapons
Texas Ranger Issues Warning About ISIS Attack In April of 2015
ISIS Fires Upon Border Patrol Helicopter In June 2015
F-16 Crash at the Mexican Border In June of 2015
PREDICTIVE PROGRAMMING OF MORE TO COME
Russia’s Terrorist Connections Connected to the F-16 Takedown
The Chattanooga Assassin In July of 2015
By Bob O’Dell
While many were looking for major financial collapse in the United States as the recent Shemitah year ended on Sept. 13, in hindsight the most notable change we have faced since then is more terrorism. President Obama made our sense of that marked change official on Sunday night when he addressed the nation about San Bernardino and said “the terrorist threat has evolved into a new phase.” Yet, as scary as that is, in the financial world the economic data are reasonably strong, and the stock market is once again approaching all-time highs.
This raises the very reasonable question: Has the Shemitah theory failed?
Not only has the Shemitah theory not failed, after reading the story below, you might consider God to be the hero. His own words in Leviticus are explaining our current situation exactly.
This summer, an Orthodox Jew and I (a Christian) embarked upon a very unusual project: to co-write a book to explain many new Christian theories from a Jewish perspective. We were trying to bring together the Blood Moons, the Shemitah, the blessing/cursing of Israel and the coming Jubilee, and see if we could make sense of them all as different facets of one large storyline around God’s purposes for Israel. “Israel FIRST!” went to print in mid-August, a full month before the Shemitah year ended and two weeks before the stock market scare in late August.
Regarding the Shemitah, we had a sense that while this topic was being treated respectfully by Christians, it was being viewed superficially. Think of it like an iceberg. It is easy to see that part above the water, but most of the iceberg lies below. Jewish scholars spent hundreds of years tackling topics in Scripture attempting to dig out connections, looking for ever-larger, ever-fuller views. It would be unwise to think that any single book on the subject would be the last word, ours included! But, that is no excuse for all researchers, including us, to refrain from attempting to add more insight.
In one of the chapters of our book, we revealed a theory about the Shemitah we called “God’s Seven Year Forecast.” The thinking went like this:
What if, rather than focusing so much on the last year of a seven-year cycle, we were to step back and take a larger view: the transition of one seven-year cycle to the next one. This view is found all over scripture. For instance, God told Joseph and then Pharaoh that He was planning two seven-year cycles back to back – one cycle of plenty followed by one cycle of famine. (See Genesis 41:1-38.)
To that simple idea, next we added a fascinating observation made by Jonathan Cahn’s in his book “The Mystery of the Shemitah,” where he remarked that the recent history of the United States was written in 28 year cycles: 1917-1945, 1945-1973, 1973-2001. Each of these is comprised of four seven-year-long long cycles, each ending in a Shemitah year.
Given the dramatic and traumatic events that have occurred since 2001 in our country, we asked ourselves two questions:
1. Did another 28-year cycle begin in 2001?
2. Is this 28-year cycle especially critical to the future of our nation?
With these questions in mind, we looked for sequences of sevens in scripture and found a passage in Leviticus 26 that seemed to jump off the page. After introducing the Shemitah and Jubilee in chapter 25, God goes on to describe in chapter 26 a sequence of increasing judgments that will be brought upon Israel in four successive stages in verses 16-33, continuing to escalate until the land once again enjoys its Sabbaths in verse 34. Here is where most researchers dismiss these verses as being unrelated to any other nation than Israel. But we asked, “Could this be a general blueprint for God’s interaction with a nation that turns away from Him?”
Then we looked at the first set of judgments in the list to see how well they mapped to what has happened in the USA from 2001-2008. The sequence begins with verse 16:
“I will appoint over you a sudden terror.”
This seems to point to 9/11, as there has been no event like it in modern history, an event that has changed not only the USA but the entire Western world.
That first list in Leviticus includes other items that can be placed into that seven-year period, but not all occurring in 2001, including items like economic stagnation.
Moving on to the second list, the one that per this theory would need to apply to 2008-2015, it begins in verse 19 with:
“I will also break down your pride of power.”
While Americans are divided on many things, there probably isn’t a single change in the most recent seven years that is not more universally recognized and understood than the idea that the USA no longer carries the same level of respect around the world, the “pride of power” it used to have.
That list then continues with other items that can be placed into that seven-year period, but not all occurring just in 2008, including items of economic hardship that were worse than in the first seven-year period. Other items in that list can be mapped into the seven-year period from 2008-2015.
Then we said in our book that if the first two patterns were correct, then the next seven years, the new seven years we just entered in September, should begin with verse 22:
“I will let loose among you the beasts of the field, which will bereave you of your children. …”
We wondered this summer, what this phrase might mean, and we wrote that the “beasts of the field” could include “lone wolf attacks.” But if that were the case, there should be a significant increase in them beginning Sept. 14. We also saw in this same list a series of things that looked less like economic hardship, and more like loss of life, and even the loss of the previous way of life. We concluded the discussion of these seven years with: “Therefore, we may see that the financial correction this time around may not be as drastic as it was in 2008; but if that is the case, then the response will be more deadly this time around, God forbid. It will be felt much more personally.”
Since we wrote the book, the world has seen a new phase of terrorism beginning on the Temple Mount on Sept. 13, with the first death occurring in Jerusalem on Sept. 14, followed by deaths in Judea and Samaria, followed by the Oregon shooting on Oct. 1, the Ankara, Turkey, peace rally bombing on Oct. 12, UC Merced stabbings on Nov. 4 and many other events leading up to the Paris attacks on Nov. 13, and now San Bernardino on Dec. 2. Most of the terrorism victims have been young people, reminding of the scripture “I will let loose among you the beasts of the field, which will bereave you of your children. …”
The reference to beasts of the field is relevant given the fact that there is no way to reason with these terrorists. Interestingly, the first person in scripture to be compared to a wild beast was Ishmael.
God is the hero for calling these things out well in advance and laying out a blueprint for what his national judgment plan may look like. How much more foundational it is to have a blueprint laid out in scripture than just in some individual’s dream or vision.
The good news is that according to these very same passages, the downward spiral toward disaster can be averted at any time through national repentance. In such repentance, I strongly believe that it is up to us as the church to lead the way.
Finally, with regard to financial impact, we should not assume that we are out of the woods. The current list alludes to financial downturn coming soon. I may discuss that more in a future column.
Credit to WND
Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2015/12/did-the-shemitah-predict-recent-terrorism/#PoyttROoZebzpZWH.99
Russia is now equipping its Su-34 fighters with air-to-air missiles in preparation for potential dogfights with NATO over Syria.
“Today, Russian Su-34 fighter-bombers have made their first sortie equipped not only with high explosive aviation bombs and hollow charge bombs, but also with short- and medium-range air-to-air missiles,” Russian Air Force spokesman Igor Klimov told RT. “The planes are equipped with missiles for defensive purposes.”
He also added the missiles are “capable of hitting air targets within a 60km radius.”
It’s obvious that Russia is not equipping its jets with air-to-air missiles to fight ground-based ISIS militants but rather to prevent Turkish F-16s from shooting down more of its planes.
Turkey, a NATO ally, shot down a Russian Su-24 bomber on Nov. 24, claiming it had violated Turkish airspace, but Moscow rejected the claim.
Numerous analysts also pointed out that even if the Russian jet did cross through the tiny strip of Turkey bordering Syria, it would have only been in Turkey for a matter of seconds.
“In the wake of the downing, President Vladimir Putin on Saturday signed a decree imposing a package of economic sanctions against Turkey,” RT reported. “The measures include banning several Turkish organizations and the import of certain goods.”
“Under the sanctions, the visa-free regime for Turkish nationals traveling to Russia will be suspended starting next year.”
Turkey responded by reportedly blocking Russian ships from passing through the Strait of Bosphorus linking the Black Sea to the Mediterranean, which prevents Russia’s Black Sea fleet from traveling to the rest of the world or even back to its home port.
But Putin has also ordered 150,000 Russian troops deployed into Syria while also sending another 7,000 Russian troops with tanks, rocket launchers and artillery to the Turkish border at Armenia with orders to be “fully combat ready.”
Even though Turkey initiated its stand-off with Russia by intentionally shooting down the Su-24 near the Syrian border, it could potentially invoke Article 5 of the NATO Treaty which requires all NATO members, including the U.S., to come to its defense if Turkey goes to war with Russia.
Credit to EU Times