THE HOLY SPIRIT SUSTAINS US THROUGH TRIALS AND TRIBULATION

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom He predestined He also called, and those whom He called He also justified, and those whom He justified He also glorified.” Romans 8:28-30

Coptic Christian martyrs for Christ

While this life is fraught with many trials and tribulations, the sufferings we experience are to be counted as incomparable with the glories to come. We groan, we wail, we suffer—yet with much hope as we persevere to the end, waiting for the redemption of all creation, and even our bodies. Yet in this, the tension that all mankind faces come to the forefront, and the reason for this is simple: we must wait. This anticipation for glory builds more and more anticipation the longer we must endure this life. This anticipation for glory sustains us and brings forth one major reason why we persevere: we hope in the age to come rather than in this broken and fallen age.

Paul says, that in the same way, this hope for glorification sustains us, the Spirit sustains us, for He knows precisely how to intercede on our behalf before the Father.

Where words and utterances fail us in our prayers, the Spirit transforms them into prayers that match the will of God. The very purpose of the Spirit’s intercession is not so we can feel good about His work in doing so, though we should have much joy in this fact. Rather, the Spirit’s work in transforming our failed prayers likewise culminates in us reaching the finish line, where we are ushered into the presence of our Triune Lord for all eternity. In other words, the Spirit’s work of intercession on our behalf is part and parcel of our endurance; we endure not only for the hope of the age to come but specifically because part of the Spirit’s work is to bring about endurance in us.

Here then is where we find our particular reference that God works all things for good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. And what is that purpose? Paul says, the “good” that God is working all things together for, is explicit.

For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.” Romans 8:29-30

Human suffering has a purpose that culminates in glory. To make that ever clearer: the purpose of our trials and sufferings is to bring us to final redemption, where we see God face to face, free from the pain, devastation, and destruction caused by the curse of sin, our adversary Satan, and death itself.

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.Romans 8:38-39

God sees to it, from eternity past to eternity future, that those who love God, that is, those who are in Christ, will one day be glorified, first to assist Jesus in His Millennial reign on this earth and then, after the White Throne judgement, to be ushered into a world free from the Fall and its effects. All of our groaning, all of our longing, all of our deferred hope for what is to come, shall be satisfied in the fullness and richness of God’s saving love through Christ.

Adapted from an article by Jason Gilbert “God Works All Things for Good” August 23, 2022, http://www.patheos.com

REVIVAL AND PERSECUTION IN THE END TIMES

Both are possible and Jesus told us that this is what will happen before He returns, first to raise the dead in Christ and then rapture the Saints that are alive, before pouring out His wrath upon an unrepentant world.

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.Matthew 24:9-14

I met Jonathan Cahn by chance at breakfast at the Leonardo Hotel in Jerusalem. I was ordering an omelette at breakfast when a voice behind me said, I will have one of those too. I looked around and could not believe I was looking at Jonathan Cahn. Surprised, I said, Jonathan Cahn! He replied that’s right. Wanting to keep the conversation going, I asked, what are you doing here, Conference? No! he replied, I am here on vacation, I have not been well. I was handed my omelette, so I returned to my table, but I immediately asked the Holy Spirit why had I met Jonathan at this time. Was there a purpose? Immediately, the Holy Spirit told me to share with Jonathan why I was in Jerusalem and what was happening at the Gathering that I was attending in the large International Convention Centre opposite the Knesset. Jonathan was sitting at a table with his wife and children so my immediate reaction was no, I should not interrupt them, but the Holy Spirit then added why I needed to tell him. He needs to know that 1500 of the 3000 at the Gathering are Chinese. So I went to the table and first apologised for interrupting their breakfast, but I said, that I believed the Holy Spirit wanted Jonathan to know what God was doing in Israel at this time. I then asked him if he knew that 3000 Christians were here in Israel for a Gathering – no speakers just to worship and hear from God. Jonathan said no, he was not aware of the Gathering and was surprised at the number of Christians attending. I then dropped the “bombshell” 1500 of the attendees were Chinese a large portion from mainland China. No way, was Jonathan’s response. 1500 Chinese came to Jerusalem to pray and offer their support to their Jewish brothers and sisters. Jonathan knows what God is doing in America, but had no concept of the extent of how God is using Chinese Christians to impact the world, even Jerusalem.

Jonathan is God’s prophet for America at this time issuing warnings that America needs to turn back to God or receive His judgement. His book The Harbinger warns America that God had already sent nine warnings to America starting with 9/11, the attack on the World Trade Centre and as America has not heeded those warnings further judgement is inevitable.

If you have not heard Jonathan before you will be blown away by his revelation of Biblical prophecies.

CHRISTIANS CANNOT COUNSEL TRANSGENDER YOUTH

The recent U.S. Executive Order on Advancing Equality for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Intersex Individuals calls on the administration to “safeguard LGBTQI+ youth from dangerous practices like so-called ‘conversion therapy’—efforts to suppress or change an individual’s sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.” It contends that conversion therapy is a “discredited practice that research indicates can cause significant harm, including higher rates of suicide-related thoughts and behaviors by LGBTQI+ youth.” Biden also directed the Federal Trade Commission to determine “whether so-called conversion therapy constitutes an unfair or deceptive act or practice, and to issue such consumer warnings or notices as may be appropriate.”

In my recent post on SELLING THE TRANSGENDER STORY, I showed a very appealing video that attempts to sell the transgender agenda as a positive step forward whereby we are told that tens of thousands of children out there identify as transgender. We are also told that Ryland and the Whittington family is a typical ‘American family’. As well, we are told that gender and sexuality are different. All three claims are false. If you have not viewed this video can I suggest you do. It was posted five days ago.

God and his commandments have been rejected by the majority of people as they were by the people of Noah’s Day bringing God’s judgement upon them. Jesus warned us that the world would reject God and His values prior to His return. Persecution of active Christians (living out their faith) will be considered just.

Is the church preparing Christians for this escalating persecution?

This is another appealing video selling Ryland’s transgender conversion beginning at age 3.

PERSECUTION OF CHRISTIANS ESCALATES IN NIGERIA

The blood is still there. It’s still spread all over the floor.”

Joel Veldkamp, head of international communications at persecution watchdog Christian Solidarity International (CSI), shared these chilling words while discussing the vile attack on a Nigerian church Sunday that left at least 50 dead.

A police officer stands guard inside the St. Francis Catholic Church, a day after an attack that targeted worshipers in Owo, Nigeria, Monday, June 6, 2022. The gunmen who killed 50 people at a Catholic church in southwestern Nigeria opened fire on worshippers both inside and outside the building in a coordinated attack before escaping the scene

“It was Pentecost Sunday in Nigeria, so the church was full of people,” Veldkamp said. “According to one report, the gunmen snuck in disguised as worshippers. And then other gunmen arrived on motorcycles from the outside and started shooting from the outside, and then the ones who were already inside the congregation started shooting as well.”

The assailants then reportedly placed bombs on the altar and around the church before detonating them.

So far, no one has claimed responsibility for the attack, though some reports ponder whether radical Islamic terror groups could be culpable. The location of the attack — in a southwest region of Nigeria — is one of the factors that adds to the “distressing and disturbing” details, as that area is typically peaceful and unaffected by the terror that has gripped portions of northern Nigeria.

“There are a lot of fears that this is going to open up a new chapter in anti-Christian terrorism in Nigeria,” Veldkamp said.

Renewed critique emerged last month after a Muslim mob reportedly fatally stoned Deborah Emmanuel Yakubu, a 25-year-old Christian college student of Shehu Shagari College of Education was beaten and burned to death in Sokoto Nigeria, Friday, May 13, 2022, by fellow Muslim students after she was accused of making a blasphemous social media post.

SIN IS LAWLESSNESS

Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness.1 John 3:4

For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.Romans 8:7-8

We have a generation that has been taught in schools and universities that God does not exist. They are taught evolution and billions of years explains the existence of this universe. To them the Bible is just a book of fables. As people cancel God and His perfect divine guidance from their lives they are constrained to decide for themselves what is right and wrong. The outcome is described in God’s word.

there is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.” Proverbs 14:12 and 16:25

Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.1 John 3:8

The traditional American family is in shambles and most western nations’ families are headed the same way. In the U.S. forty-three percent of babies are born to unwed mothers. Along with the wreckage of the family, the US is seeing record levels of depression, mental illness, soaring suicide rates, an increase in senseless violence, and a deadly drug epidemic. And yet the demonically driven militants press on with even greater zeal. The devil’s venomous strategy to deceive and damage humanity worked from the beginning. Satan cancelled God in the eyes of Eve – insinuating the One who instructed Adam and Eve about what was good and evil was actually a liar (Genesis 3:1-5). Adam in clear disobedience to God went along with it. Satan the master manipulator continues to bring horrendous evil on humanity.

And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.Ephesians 2:1-3

Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.Ephesians 2:11-12

Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.1 Peter 5:8-9

Fortunately, Jesus told us in advance that tribulation would be intense for Christians in the last days prior to His return. He alone can deal with Satan, his minions, and the unrepentant and restore righteousness to the world.

For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be. And if those days had not been cut short, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect, those days will be cut short.Matthew 24:21-22

Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And He will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.” Matthew 24:29-31

SEISMIC SHIFT IN CHRISTIAN PERSECUTION

Afghanistan is now the worst nation in the world for Christian persecution, according to Open Doors USA, an organization that tracks global religious maltreatment. The shocking development is undoubtedly the “biggest seismic shift” in decades, as North Korea, the reclusive and oppressive East Asian country, was bumped from the top spot it had occupied for 20 years. “This year’s 2022 World Watch List, is the biggest seismic shift in over 20 years because Afghanistan is now the No. 1 country on the World Watch List, supplanting North Korea,” Open Doors USA CEO David Curry said. Afghanistan has long been embroiled in chaos, but the situation devolved further when the U.S. undertook a chaotic withdrawal last August, a retreat that carried with it serious consequences.

The education of young girls has changed dramatically

“Many people are aware of what’s happened since August in Afghanistan,” Curry said, citing the chaos and uncertainty. “It has emboldened Islamic extremists in other parts of the world. We believe it’s going to have a ripple effect.”  Christians in Afghanistan face intensifying persecution at the hands of the resurgent Taliban, with militants purportedly arresting and possibly seeking to kill believers. Christian women, in particular, are especially vulnerable and are seen as ideological enemies.

Looking at the diverse forms of persecution that exist, Curry noted that there is a “two-front war” against Christianity that can be observed on the “World Watch List.” On one side, there are the tribal-led government forces like the Taliban and on the other are centralized and tech-savvy governments like what is seen in China.

Curry explained why the Chinese government’s actions should be deeply concerning. “Their system and their technology is the greatest threat right now overall in the future of religious expression,” he said, likening the methodical restrictions to a “high tech noose around the neck of expression of faith.”

Curry said the Chinese government has hampered the efforts of almost every church, forcing houses of worship to break into groups and to shut down. Christians are at risk of losing jobs, having travel restricted, and “even worse.” “They have artificial intelligence. They monitor all the video, they monitor the online presence,” he said.

Fortunately, we know how the underground church at the time of Mao grew strong under intense persecution. Believers were totally dependent upon God and miracles abounded as testified by Chinese believers like Brother You in his book The Heavenly Man. As prophesied, persecution increases in these last days before Jesus returns, and those totally committed to God will walk in the power of the Holy Spirit with all the gifts of the Spirit being manifested in their ministry to others.

PERSECUTION OF CHRISTIANS ESCALATING AS PROPHESIED

YouTube Labels John MacArthur’s Sermon Hate Speech After He Said God Made Us ‘Male and Female

We should not be surprised when this happens, God has given us many prophecies of what we can expect before Jesus pours out His wrath upon an unrepentant, lawless world and He returns to put things right and usher in His Millennial Kingdom. We are in those prophesied “end times”.

Pastor John MacArthur of Grace Community Church in Los Angeles, CA, preached a sermon Sunday about biblical sexuality, which as CBN’s Faithwire reported was part of an effort by pastors across North America to protest a new Canadian law that took effect Jan. 8 after being pushed through Parliament with little debate.

The concern is that Canada’s Bill C-4 is broadly worded and could, in effect, ban biblical teachings on sexual ethics, and might even limit personal communications on the subject. Preachers are protesting the law at the pulpits, with 4,000 pastors affirming their opposition as well as willingness to speak out against it, Fox News reported.

According to Liberty Coalition Canada, the bill’s wording is broad enough to allow for “the criminal prosecution of Christians who would speak biblical truth into the lives of those in bondage to sexual sins like homosexuality and transgenderism.”

Standing in the pulpit on Sunday, MacArthur said, “There is no such thing as transgender. You are either XX or XY, that’s it. God made man male and female. That is determined genetically, that is physiology, that is science, that is reality.”

“On the one hand, the reality of that lie and deception is so damaging, so destructive, so isolating, so corrupting that it needs to be confronted, but on the other hand, that confrontation can’t exaggerate what already exists, which is a sense of feeling isolated in relationships,” he said.

But YouTube removed MacArthur’s sermon from its platform and told conservative commentator Todd Starnes that MacArthur’s video presentation was “hate speech.”

“Our team has reviewed your content, and, unfortunately, we think it violates our hate speech policy,” YouTube said, according to Starnes. “We’ve removed the following content from YouTube: ‘There is no such thing as transgender. You are either XX or XY. That’s it. – Pastor John MacArthur.’”

Critics worry the law will perpetuate religious persecution and could even govern private conversations. 

Americans should be preparing for a time when pastors and religious leaders will face persecution for teaching the Word of God,” Starnes warned

END TIMES PERSECUTION OF CHRISTIANS

A Hindu nationalist religious leader called for fellow Hindus to behead Christian converts at a mass rally in India’s central Chhattisgarh state. Swami Parmatmanand, a prominent leader in the Hindutva movement, called for the targeted killings at a protest earlier this month. The protest was organised against an alleged rise in conversions of Hindus to Christianity.  Speaking to an audience, which included senior leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Swami Parmatmanand said: “Keep a lathi (stick) at home in our villages, people keep hand-axes. Why do they keep axes? Behead them – those who come for conversion. Now you’ll say that I am spreading hate although I’m a saint. But it’s important to ignite the fire sometimes. I am telling you; anyone who comes into your house, street, neighborhood, village, don’t forgive them.” The Swami continued: “I want to tell those Christians who converted, why did you leave the ocean for the well? “I want you to talk to them politely first. Stop, protest, shoot.”

Who is motivating this Hindu nationalist leader who says he is a saint despite urging his followers to kill fellow Indians on the basis they are Christians? It is certainly not the God of love who tells us to love our neighbour as ourselves. I would suggest it is Satan himself.

Note the placards signifying Christians are PEACE LOVING

Dr David Landrum, Director of Advocacy for Open Doors UK & Ireland, said: “What we are seeing in India is a coordinated campaign against Christians by Hindu nationalists. Violence is being incited by local political and religious leaders who see the public vilification of Christians as an easy way to shore up their Hindu vote bank. Police are complicit and state actors ignore and even condone persecution. The way Hindu nationalists spread the message of hatred through these rallies and protests is unbelievable. This self-perpetuating cycle of violence and intimidation has now become socially acceptable.”

Satan knows his time is short and he is doing his utmost to take as many people (people made in God’s image) down with him.

PROPHESIED ONE WORLD GOVERNMENT

God has given us 2000 prophecies about the “end times” prior to His return to rule and reign over the nations for 1000 years. It will be a time of intense persecution for Christians so He wants us to be prepared. We need to know He is in complete control of the events and that He is working out His purposes on His earth.

These are Jesus’ own words; note what the Christians are doing despite the persecution; they are preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom of God.

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.Matthew 24:9-14

The Bible clearly shows us that there will be a ONE WORLD GOVERNMENT but it isn’t the Beast Empire as most expect. If not, what will this government be and what happens to it that allows the Beast to take control? Watch this Nelson Walters video for the biblical answer. How the United Nations becomes a One World Power.

END OF DAYS MESSAGE FROM JONATHAN CAHN

This is more a podcast than a video but in it Jonathan reveals how the Bible consistently, right from the early books of Moses, outlines the events that will unfold in the last days, the end of days before Jesus returns to rule and reign on this earth during the Millennium.. He then shows us how the godless events, the vulgar culture, the great falling away in the church, but also a great falling away from the natural to the unnatural, that are unfolding in our time are prophesied in God’s Word. Jesus has also revealed to Christians that He will purify His church before He comes again.

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.” Matthew 24:9-14