LAST DAYS MIDDLE EAST WARS

 A new military incursion into Libya is part of a long-awaited dream by Turkish President Erdogan to return the Ottoman Caliphate, a global Islamic rule that subjugated Jews and Christians for six centuries. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported on Monday that Turkish-backed Syrian mercenaries have begun arriving in Libya. The SOHR reported that a commander of the Turkish-backed Syrian troops en route to Libya announced as their battle cry, “We will present our souls for the Ottoman Caliphate.”

The Ottoman Caliphate, known in the West as the Ottoman or Turkish Empire, was founded in the 13th Century and eventually controlled much of Southeast Europe, Western Asia, and North Africa. This control lasted for several hundred years and only truly ended after WWI when the empire was partitioned by the Allied Powers and the 101st and final Caliph, Sultan Abdulmecid II, was deposed and expelled.

At a summit of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Istanbul last year, Erdogan called on all of the 57 Muslim member nations to join together against Israel to avenge the deaths of Palestinians killed while charging the southern border with Gaza.

Previously, in 2015, Erdogan gave a speech commemorating 562 years since the Turks captured Constantinople (now known as Istanbul) from European Christians in which he called for the Muslim conquest of Jerusalem. “Conquest is Mecca, conquest is Saladin, it’s to hoist the Islamic flag over Jerusalem again; conquest is the heritage of Mehmed II and conquest means forcing Turkey back on its feet,” Erdogan said in the speech in Istanbul.

Approximately 2,400 troops are already in Tripoli while another 1,700 are currently undergoing training in Turkey. Activists informed the SOHR that Turkey intends to send a total of 6,000 troops to Libya.

Turkey deploys 2,000 troops to Libya to Reestablish Muslim Caliphate with Jerusalem as Capital

At the same time as Erdogan is aggressively moving to reestablish a Sunni Ottoman Empire (Goat of Daniel 8), Iran (Ram of Daniel 8), Shia is equally aggressively trying to establish its dominance in the Middle East pushing into Iraq and with its proxies Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza, the PMF (Popular Mobilisation Forces) in Iraq, Houthi rebels in Yemen, and other small Shiite militias in Syria and other Middle Eastern Countries.

Scripture provides us with a picture of what is unfolding here: Daniel 8:4, tells us that initially the ram (Iran) will succeed in conquering east, west and north only to enrage the goat (Turkey) with its aspirations for a revived Ottoman Empire. The goat defeats/tramples the ram (Daniel 8:7). We then learn that because the revived Ottoman Empire/goat becomes too strong, it is broken up into four (EU or USA or Coalition as before?), “and out of one of them comes a little horn (Antichrist) which grew exceedingly great toward the south, toward the east, and toward the Glorious Land” (Daniel 8:9).

Christian should use these prophecies in evangelism. We know how “end times” event play out. There are far more prophecies about Jesus second coming than there were of His first coming. Jesus admonished the Pharisees “for not knowing the time of your visitation.” Luke 19:44. I am sure He would likewise scold church leaders today for not warning His church of apostasy and coming escalating tribulation. Already, we see much of the church compromising with the world and discarding biblical truth on sexuality and marriage. Keep your eyes on the Middle East and you will see Biblical prophecy unfold.

ENSURE PEOPLE UNDERSTAND THE GOSPEL MESSAGE

Here are five ways to ensure your Gospel message is understood so the enemy can’t snatch “the message of eternal life” from the minds and hearts of your hearers. This message applies equally to when you are speaking to a group or just one person.

When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in their heart. This is the seed sown along the path.” Matthew 13:19

1. Don’t focus on what you’re teaching, focus on what they’re learning.  Instead of being consumed with getting your message across, get feedback to ensure they are engaged. You’re not successful when you get through your outline, you’re successful when they understand the message, and sometimes those are two different things.

2. Don’t give the answer before they’ve asked the question.  Utilise the first few minutes of your message to engage with your audience, throw out strategic questions, to get people thinking. To get them asking the right questions, only then will your answers be meaningful. The goal is to get people wanting to know the answer to the right questions.

3. Tell better stories and use testimonies. There’s a reason Jesus told so many stories. We’re wired for stories. If your message has all the facts but no compelling stories, you’re in danger of teaching for knowledge, not understanding. Stories help complex and deep truths penetrate the outer shell of our minds. Share your testimony, testimonies are powerful. It will be the linchpin of your message.

4. Create environments that foster an atmosphere for deeper learning.  People need to feel welcomed, loved, accepted, comfortable in the physical environment you’re teaching in. Foster an atmosphere where people are open to deeper learning. Your reputation must be one of integrity.

5. Check the fruit. The easiest way to check whether you’re teaching for knowledge or understanding is to check the fruit. Are they following through with what you’re asking them to do? Are they living it out? If there’s no long-term fruit in your audience, you’re teaching for knowledge. Jesus himself said that when you teach for understanding, “this is the one who produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown”  (Matthew 13:23).

NICK WITNESSING IN PRISON

What amazing ministry God has given Nick Vujicic, the man with no arms and legs. He has brought more people into God’s Kingdom than many denominations.

Watch and be encouraged and hopefully challenged about what God’s call is on your life, particularly in these last days when persecution will intensify for those that stand up for God and His values.

SEEKING AND FINDING THE ONE LOST SHEEP

In the Lord’s economy, seeking and finding one lost sheep is more important than protecting the ninety nine who are living safely in the sheepfold. Seeking one lost sheep ultimately produces more heavenly joy than protecting ninety nine sheep who are not lost. How much more should we feel the burden when we realise that not one, but billions are lost?  But only a single penny out of every mission dollar is spent to reach these lost sheep and only a handful of shepherds are searching for them.

Image result for picture of parable of the lost sheep

The church spends untold billions of dollars building bigger and better sheep pens for people who are bored with the Gospel. We say we want to live like Jesus and spend our money wisely. But these cold, hard statistics betray our perverted priorities. If we’re honest, we are the ones He is so lovingly chastising in Luke 15. For us to faithfully live out our mandate to make disciples of all nations, we have to actually spend our time, money, and manpower going to the places that are completely unreached but also to the lost in our own neighbourhood. We have to care and share. We have to prioritise unreached people with our intercession, time, and money.

GOD’S MESSAGE FOR OUR YOUTH

Tens of thousands of people flocked to AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, Sunday evening for Harvest America 2018, which included gospel music and a message by Southern California Pastor Greg Laurie, who invited the crowd to respond to the Gospel.

Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship, shared about his difficult childhood, and how he got into drugs and alcohol. “I was going downhill fast … I was too cynical, too hard … but Christ changed my life one day. I didn’t plan on it, but it happened,” he said.

In today’s culture, he continued, people think they can be happy only if they get rich and famous. But, he added, the “bottom line” is that “fame and wealth, possessions, all the things this world has to offer … will not make you happy.”

In one week alone, he said, two celebrities — television personality Anthony Bourdain and fashion icon Kate Spade — took their own lives. Last year, 45,000 Americans took their lives, he added.

“I’m not here tonight to talk to you about religion. I’m here to talk to you about a relationship, a friendship, with God,” Pastor Laurie told the crowd.

“There is someone who loves you and someone who values you. And He’s called Jesus Christ,

“For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

“Do you have hope tonight?” the California pastor asked the audience. He further asked if Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is “living inside of you right now”? If He is, Laurie stressed, then you’d know for certain. (Strictly speaking, Laurie should have asked if the Holy Spirit is “living inside of you right now” then you’d know for certain. Jesus made it possible for our Heavenly Father to send the Holy Spirit to indwell all believers that understand the sacrifice on “The Cross”, His Son, Jesus Christ made on their behalf.)

We all are sinners and fall short of God’s glory, and we can’t do anything personally to make this right, he continued. And because of sin we will face judgment one day, he said. “But the good news is that God loved us so much that He sent His Son Jesus Christ on a rescue operation to planet earth,” he explained.

Jesus was born in a manger, led a perfect life and died a perfect death. “And then He rose again from the dead,” he told the crowd, and added that Jesus died in our place more than 2,000 years ago.

When the evangelist asked people to come down to the center of the stadium if they wanted to pray to accept Jesus as their Lord and Saviour, thousands did.

Following the tradition of late evangelist Billy Graham, the preacher featured John 14:6 (Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father, except through me.) in front of his pulpit. “I was inspired to carry that ‘Evangelistic tradition’ forward tonight,” he said.

article by  Anugrah Kumar , Christian Post Contributor  

THE ULTIMATE PRODUCT – WHY DON’T PEOPLE BUY IT?

Salvation through faith in Jesus is the ultimate ‘product’:

  • ETERNAL LIFE IN A NEW HEAVEN AND EARTH WHERE THERE IS NO PAIN AND SUFFERING
  • IT’S AVAILABLE TO EVERYONE
  • IT’S FREE
  • REJECTING JESUS (THE PRODUCT) CONSIGNS YOU TO AN ETERNITY IN HELL (SEPARATION FROM YOUR CREATOR AND HIS GOODNESS FOREVER)

“For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame…., for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. For whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Romans 11-13

We are all involved in selling on a day-to-day basis, often without even knowing it. A dictionary definition of selling is ‘to persuade someone of the merits of’, or, to ‘cause someone to become enthusiastic about’ something.

And there is scriptural support for the idea that we should be more ‘calculating’ (or strategic) in our witnessing. In 1 Corinthians 9: 20-23 we read how Paul was strategic:

“To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law. To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some.”

Sales professionals simply take what is second nature to us all, refine it, and apply it to specific situations to maximise their chances of success.

What follows is not intended to be prescriptive of how we should witness to the lost. We are all different and, as such, we relate to people in different ways. Hopefully, many of you are already using a lot of the techniques I’m about to share, often without even realising it. But if you’re about to take the first step in your evangelising, or you are frustrated by your efforts to date, I hope this might help.

Laying the foundations

“Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks us to give the reason for the hope that we have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behaviour in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.”  1 Peter 3:15–16

Be prepared

When you witness to an unbeliever, you will be asked questions. It’s important that you can either answer these questions or, at the very least, direct them to a place where they might find the answers. But it’s pointless having all the answers if you never actually take the step to talk to an unbeliever about Jesus.

Prepared to give an answer

The Gospel message provides an answer to the predicament of every person—we are all sinners in need of salvation. Once this ‘cornerstone’ is in place, we have a sure foundation from which to confidently answer objections to the message.

Being equipped with answers will help you to overcome objections and give you confidence to step out and share the Gospel. This is where Creation Ministries International resources are so valuable. Probably the best place to start is with the Creation Answers Book, which has easy to understand answers to over 60 most asked questions on creation, evolution and the Bible.

You should also familiarise yourself with creation.com, so that, if you don’t know the answer to a question, you can recommend a place they can go to find the answer (and the search terms the person might use for best results). It can also be helpful to have tracts to give away (e.g. creation.com witnessing cards).

To everyone who asks

Successful sales people will actively seek to generate selling opportunities. Moreover, the Great Commission is a command – “go and make disciples of all nations” Matthew 28:19.

Making a sales presentation will usually involve an invitation, either in the form of an appointment, or at least a request for information about a product. Evangelism is similar—yes, we should always be looking for opportunities to start a conversation about Jesus (the easiest way is simply to tell (or, remind) people you’re a Christian). But ‘everyone who asks’ implies an invitation to give the reason for the hope we have.

The invitation(s) might be obvious: e.g. “Why are you a Christian?” Or they might be subtle: e.g. a throw away comment about Jesus, Christianity, another religion, or a news item with an evolutionary bias, etc. You just have to be prepared to recognize them when they arise. And don’t beat yourself up if you miss an opportunity (we all miss opportunities). Put it down to experience and work out ways to be better prepared next time.

Gentleness and respect

Successful selling requires persuasion, not pressure, and this is even more the case with evangelism. In most cases, you will effectively be telling someone that their whole worldview is wrong. This can be very confronting! Gentle persuasion is less likely to cause offence and, in the event of a negative reaction, is more likely to leave the lines of communication open for future discussions.

Respect is equally important. First, we are all made in the image of God, with responsibility for our decisions. We must always respect a person’s right to choose their own destiny, no matter how wrong we believe that choice to be. Second, respect implies a relationship. You cannot respectfully tell a person their worldview is wrong if you don’t know what that worldview is.

Before sharing the Gospel with someone, it’s important you take time to get to know them (if time allows). The easiest way to do this is to ask questions and be a good listener. We humans like to talk about ourselves and asking questions invites people to do just that. In the process, you will have the opportunity to demonstrate a genuine interest in who they are and what they believe. They, in turn, will be more comfortable in speaking to you, and will be more likely to listen when you speak to them.

Ask open-ended questions that require more than a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer. For instance, questions prefaced with ‘Who?’ ‘What?’ ‘Which?’ ‘Why?’ ‘When?’ ‘Where?’ and ‘How?’ Look for common interests and shared views and highlight these as they come up (as Paul would have done). If the conversation becomes more worldview-centric, ask clarifying questions and make a mental note of anything they may tell you that you can use to make the Gospel message more personal to them and more relevant to their life.

Whatever you do, don’t assume anything about the person you’re speaking to that you haven’t heard from them personally. When the time is right, it can be remarkably easy to steer the conversation to what you believe, simply by saying something like; “That’s very different to how I view the world.”

The reason for the hope that we have

Our ultimate aim should be that the people we witness to will place their confidence and faith in Jesus as their Lord and Saviour. This is the hope that we have for ourselves, and the hope we should have for others. It may not happen at the first meeting, the second meeting, or for many years. We might not even be present when the decision is finally made (if it is made at all) but this must be our goal from the very beginning.

To this end, the most important part of witnessing is the Gospel presentation and you need to get it right. Prepare, commit to memory, and practice your Gospel presentation. It should be biblically sound, containing all the major features and benefits of the Gospel message, starting with the ‘very good’ Creation of Genesis 1. It should be logical, easy to understand and concise.

It should explain the features of the Gospel, but should focus on the benefits, the reason(s) for the hope that we have. To use a sales analogy, no-one buys a refrigerator because it has a motor, insulated walls and shelves (the features). We buy a refrigerator because it keeps drinks cold and food fresh (the benefits).

Don’t cut corners. Just as you shouldn’t assume anything about another person’s worldview, don’t assume they have a clear understanding of the Gospel, even if they tell you they do. In this increasingly secular world, if an unbeliever has any understanding of the Gospel at all, it is likely to be a distorted version.

As you grow in confidence, you may be able to weave into your Gospel presentation some of what you have learnt about the person you’re witnessing to. A good sales presentation is designed to turn ‘wants’ into ‘needs’, the theory being that a person is much more likely to ‘buy’ if they are convinced they need something, rather than just wanting it. This same process can also be applied to evangelism. For example; most honest people, when confronted with questions of mortality, will admit they want to know what happens when they die. You can point out that, logically, they need to find the answer to this question before they die, because, once they’re dead, it’s too late to do anything about it.

Those who speak maliciously against your good behaviour in Christ

Competition is a fact of life. Sales people are always on the lookout for ways to convince potential clients that what they have to offer is superior to the opposition. Successful sales people do this by highlighting the positive features of their own product and subtly, rather than overtly, undermining the competition. However, if there is anything in a competitor’s sales presentation that is perceived to be inconsistent, or false, it will be (and should be) ruthlessly exploited.

How much more will this be the case with evangelism, where we must contend with an enemy who “masquerades as an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14) but also “prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8).

Don’t make Satan’s job any easier. Everything about your Gospel presentation, and your answers to the questions you are asked, must be internally consistent (without contradiction). In doing so, you give yourself the best opportunity to convince people that the Christian worldview, alone, is externally consistent (true).

This is where those who attempt to fit evolution and millions of years into the Bible get it so wrong. By attempting to make Christianity conform to the world’s version of origins, they open the door to accusations of inconsistency and outright, deliberate deception. If the Bible can’t be trusted in the first chapters of Genesis, why would anyone trust what it says about Jesus?

Militant anti-theists will always rage against the Christian worldview simply because they have an anti-God agenda. We do ourselves, those to whom we witness, and the God we serve, a disservice by trying to appease them. Keep a ‘clear conscience’. Let Satan and his minions argue the benefits of their own worldview rather than allowing them to point out inconsistencies in yours!

Be prepared for success

When a decision is made to buy, a good salesperson will have a procedure in place to finalize the sale and an after-sales support program designed to ensure long term buyer satisfaction. In the same way, you need to plan what you will do when someone indicates that he/she is ready to commit to Christ.

First, and foremost, you should encourage them to acknowledge and confess their sin (1 John 1:9), turn to God in repentance (Acts 20:21), and believe in Jesus for remission of their sin and for salvation (Romans 10:9John 3:16).

Then, help them to put in place the tools they’ll need to grow and defend their newfound faith. This should include: encouraging them to read the Bible and pray, helping them find a Bible believing church in their area, and suggesting they seek out Christian friends and join a Bible study group. You might also offer to stay in touch and disciple them.

Last, but not least, make sure they know where to go if they have questions. Introduce them to CMI materials; Creation Magazine (you might start by giving them one of your back issues), the Creation Answers Book, and the wealth of biblically based, God-honouring resources at creation.com. That way, they too will be prepared to give an answer.

Be prepared in the heavenly realms

One last piece of advice (this one’s definitely not learnt from the business world); before you do anything, cover yourself in prayer.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippians 4:6

Pray for opportunities to share the Gospel and pray that you will recognise these opportunities when they present themselves. Pray for the boldness to speak God’s truth into the lives of friends, family, workmates, new acquaintances, etc. Pray that you will have clarity of thought and mind and that you will be able to answer the questions you might be asked. Pray for open hearts and open minds, that your efforts will bear fruit and that you will have success.

And pray, in particular, that you, and those you witness to, will be protected from the arrows of the enemy.

“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” Ephesians 6:12

The above article has been taken from the CMI article – More effective evangelism Lessons from the business world – Laying the foundations by Mark James, published, 5 June 2018 http://www.creation.com

 

UNLEASH SUPERNATURAL POWER

Unleash Supernatural, Holy Spirit Power

It is important to remember what Paul told the Corinthian church:

“I was with you in weakness, in fear and in much trembling. And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power. that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.” 1 Corinthians 2:3-4

BAKB book pic

Every believer has within them the potential to release kingdom power in their sphere of influence. The keys:

1) Believe you have the right to His power

2) Understand how to use His power

3) Be willing to release it when He directs you to.

Millions of Christians have been taught that salvation is enough, simply a get-out-of-hell-free promise. Do kind works and pray for the rapture.

Some do recognise the existence of Holy Spirit power and are willing to release it at His direction, exactly as Jesus taught in John 14:12, “Truly, truly I say to you, he who believes in Me will do the works that I do also. And he will do greater works than these because I am going to My Father.”

Jesus gave His disciples training in how to properly release Heaven’s supernatural power on earth.

Holy Spirit will guide you, ask Him. (Matt. 7:7, Luke 11:9).

Holy Spirit will teach you. (John 14:26).

Fortunately, in these last days, we are seeing a return to church as described in the Book of Acts. Check out Torben Sondergaards website Last Reformation and Francis Chan YouTube videos. Also my website http://www.powerpointsermons.net for videso and sermons.

 

THIS FALSE BELIEF IS THE ROOT OF THE CHURCH’S PROBLEMS

Francis Chan believes the modern church has an outreach problem. We pray and intercede with fervour for miracles and the supernatural—and yet few of us take that same passion into outreach ministry. Worse yet, he says, we rely on our own power to save people, believing we can do anything to persuade someone more or less to Christ. He diagnoses the problem—and offers a persuasive answer—in this sermon. Pastor’s you need to see this message. It will be 20 minutes invested in eternal life.

REALITY OF CHRISTIAN DISCIPLESHIP

Good to see this video from Torben about the reality of his experience when sharing the GOSPEL on the streets. When Jesus sent out the twelve disciples His instructions were:

EXPECT PERSECUTION

“Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. Beware of men, for they will deliver you over to courts and flog you in their synagogues, and you will be dragged before governors and kings for my sake, to bear witness before them and the Gentiles. When they deliver you over, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say, for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour. For it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. Brother will deliver brother over to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death, and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next, for truly, I say to you, you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.
“A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master. It is enough for the disciple to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more will they malign those of his household.” Matthew 10:16-25

HAVE NO FEAR

“So have no fear of them, for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops. And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.Matthew 10:26-33

NOT PEACE BUT A SWORD

Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a person’s enemies will be those of his own household. Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.Matthew 10:34-39

ETERNAL REWARDS

?Whoever receives you receives me, and whoever receives me receives him who sent me. The one who receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and the one who receives a righteous person because he is a righteous person will receive a righteous person’s reward. And whoever gives one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.Matthew 10:40-42