Sep 29 2014

Israel: TODAY You are in the Center of the DAYS OF AWE!

Tag: Israel TodaySage @ 2:21 pm

Messianic Bible


Shofar

Shalom,

We are now in an important 10-day period known as the Days of Awe (Yamim Nora’im), which started last week with Rosh HaShanah (Head of the Year) and will end this Saturday night with the close of Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement).

Today is the 5th day or middle of the Days of Awe.

A more common name for this 10-day period is the 10 Days of Repentance (Aseret Yemei Teshuvah).


A Jewish man praises God at the Western (Wailing) Wall in Jerusalem.
In his hand is a Yemenite-style shofar, which is blown during the High
Holy Days.  (Psalm 98:6 [show/hide]Psalm 98:6 [6]With trumpets and the sound of the horn make a joyful noise before the King, the LORD!
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)

Traditionally, Rosh HaShanah, also known as Yom Teruah, is a day of judgment when God opens His book, examines our deeds, and decides who will live, who will die, who will have a good life, and who will have one filled with troubles.

While it is believed that God makes His decree on Rosh HaShanah, that decree is not sealed in the Book of Life until Yom Kippur.

During these Days of Awe, we repent of our sins of the past year, ever mindful that God is a righteous judge; all His ways are just and true.  He will reward the righteous and not allow the wicked to go unpunished.

“Surely there is a reward for the righteous; surely there is a God who judges on earth.”  (Psalm 58:11 [show/hide]Psalm 58:11 [11]Mankind will say, "Surely there is a reward for the righteous; surely there is a God who judges on earth."
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)


Seeking God with an attitude of earnest repentance for the High Holy
Days at the Western (Wailing) Wall.

The concept of the Book of Life and its connection to judgment is entirely scriptural. The Bible, in fact, contains many references to the Book of Life.

The Hebrew Prophet Daniel wrote that “everyone whose name is found written in the book will be delivered.”  (Daniel 12:1 [show/hide]Daniel 12:1 The Time of the End [12:1]"At that time shall arise Michael, the great prince who has charge of your people. And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never has been since there was a nation till that time. But at that time your people shall be delivered, everyone whose name shall be found written in the book. (ESV)
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)

We also see references in the Brit Chadashah (New Testament):

“He that overcomes… I will never blot his name out of the Book of Life.”  (Revelation 3:5 [show/hide]Revelation 3:5 [5]The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life. I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels. (ESV)
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)

“Anyone not found written in the Book of Life was thrown into the lake of fire.”  (Revelation 20:15 [show/hide]Revelation 20:15 [15]And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. (ESV)
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)

May our family, loved ones, and the Jewish People be found written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.


In this Bible text, the Hebrew word Elohim (God) is surrounded by the Star
of David.

Click here Sylvia to share the Good News of YESHUA during these SPECIAL Days of Awe!

Teshuvah and Tzedakah

Judaism traditionally holds that actions consistent with teshuvah (repentance), tefilah (prayer), and tzedakah (charity / good deeds) during the Days of Awe can alter God’s decree that was issued on Rosh HaShanah.

For this reason, it’s customary during these 10 days to spend time getting right with God and with our fellow man.

Spiritual and Orthodox Jews will seek forgiveness from anyone they have wronged and try to make amends.

Also, shortly before Yom Kippur, ultra-Orthodox (Chassidic) Jews and some Orthodox Jews perform a ceremony called kaparot from the Hebrew root k-p-r, meaning to atone, where a person’s sins are symbolically transferred to a chicken.


The “kaparot” ritual is held on the eve of Yom
Kippur in Jerusalem’s Mea She’arim neighborhood.

A live chicken is held over the head by the right hand and moved in a circular motion three times around the head while reciting this prayer:

“This is my substitute, my vicarious offering, my atonement (kaparah).  This rooster (hen) shall meet its death, but I shall find a long and pleasant life of peace.”

The origin of this practice is unknown.  It isn’t mentioned in the Talmud (Rabbinic writings), and many rabbis view it as a foolish or pagan custom.

Nevertheless, the practice has survived in some communities.  The chicken is slaughtered afterward and given to the poor.

The hope for this ceremony is that it will inspire people to teshuvahreturn to God through repentance and mend their ways.


The shofar is thought to awaken the sleeping soul to repentance to
prepare for coming judgment.

In another ceremony of penitence, some religious rabbis will use a belt strap to inflict light lashes to the back of a boy or man so that the person feels a very small amount of pain or discomfort to symbolize repentance from their sins.

The person then says prayers of repentance and gives money to the rabbi, which he gives to charity (tzedakah).

However, most just offer tzedakah rather than sacrifice a chicken or take the lashes.

Instead of waving a chicken, they wave coins, which are then given to charity.  Some Jewish people practice this custom simply out of religious ritual without any real understanding of the concept of atonement.


This Chassidic Jewish boy is participating in a
kaparot ceremony in which his sins are
symbolically transferred to the chicken.

Hoping to obtain divine pardon through the sacrifice of a chicken or the giving of tzedakah is a vain hope.

No amount of silver or gold can deliver us from the wrath of God.

“Neither their silver nor their gold will be able to save them on the day of the Lord’s wrath.”  (Zephaniah 1:18 [show/hide]Zephaniah 1:18 [18]Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them on the day of the wrath of the LORD. In the fire of his jealousy, all the earth shall be consumed; for a full and sudden end he will make of all the inhabitants of the earth.
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)

We have been redeemed without money through the precious and costly gift of the blood of Messiah Yeshua (Jesus).  (Hebrews 9:12 [show/hide]Hebrews 9:12 [12]he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption. (ESV)
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)

“You were sold for nothing, and without money you will be redeemed.”  (Isaiah 52:3 [show/hide]Isaiah 52:3 [3]For thus says the LORD: "You were sold for nothing, and you shall be redeemed without money." (ESV)
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)


Handwritten text of a Torah scroll

Please help bring Yeshua to the Jewish People so that they can be written in the Lamb’s Book of Life—click now

Though we cannot atone for our sins with gifts of money, God does command that we be generous to the poor and needy in the Land.

He promises that if we are obedient to this, then He will bless all that we set our hands to!  (Deuteronomy 15:7 [show/hide]Deuteronomy 15:7 [7]"If among you, one of your brothers should become poor, in any of your towns within your land that the LORD your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart or shut your hand against your poor brother, (ESV)
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–11)

“Give generously to him and do so without a grudging heart; then because of this the Lord your God will bless you in all your work and in everything you put your hand to.”  (Deuteronomy 15:10 [show/hide]Deuteronomy 15:10 [10]You shall give to him freely, and your heart shall not be grudging when you give to him, because for this the LORD your God will bless you in all your work and in all that you undertake. (ESV)
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)

In the Torah, giving to the poor in the land of Israel is not optional:

“If there is a poor man among your brothers in any of the towns of the land that the Lord your God is giving you, do not be hardhearted or tightfisted toward your poor brother.  Rather be openhanded and freely lend him whatever he needs.”  (Deuteronomy 15:7 [show/hide]Deuteronomy 15:7 [7]"If among you, one of your brothers should become poor, in any of your towns within your land that the LORD your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart or shut your hand against your poor brother, (ESV)
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–8)

According to Jewish tradition, tzedakah is so fundamental to Judaism that if a Jewish person fails to show mercy to the poor, his or her lineage is considered suspect.

Throughout these Days of Awe, however, tzedakah will be offered over and above what we would normally give throughout the year.


A Jewish boy places his contribution in the pushka
(little box), a special box found in many Jewish
homes for the giving of tzedakah (charity).

Closing the Gate

On Yom Kippur, the closing service is called Nillah, which means the closing of a gate.

The tradition in Judaism is that up until this very last moment, we can repent and pray for God’s mercy; but when dusk comes and the fast of Yom Kippur is finished, the gate is closed and judgment is sealed.

Contrary to the perception of a closing gate that must be narrowly slipped through before it shuts completely, access through this gate is never easier than in the hours before Yom Kippur.  This is a time when the heavens are open wide.

In the Brit Chadashah (New Testament), Yeshua (Jesus) said He is the gate for His sheep.

“I am the Gate, whoever enters through Me will be saved.”  (John 10:9 [show/hide]John 10:9 [9]I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. (ESV)
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)

To understand what Yeshua mean by this, let’s examine the purpose of a gate.

1. A gate gives us access to a place; to get to the other side, we go through the gate.  Through Yeshua, by faith, we gain access to eternity:

“Those who believe in Me, even though they die like everyone else, will live again.  They are given eternal life for believing in Me, and will never perish.”  (John 11:25 [show/hide]John 11:25 [25]Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, (ESV)
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–26)


A gate in ancient Kfar Nahum (Capernaum), which is located on the
northern shore of the Sea of Galilee.

2. A gate also provides a way through a barrier.  Our sins separate us from God, but through Yeshua, Jew and Gentile have access to the Father in Heaven (Abba b’Shamayim).

“Yeshua said, ‘I am the way, the truth and the Life; no one can come to the Father but through Me.’”  (John 14:6 [show/hide]John 14:6 [6]Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (ESV)
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3. A gate controls who may or may not enter:

“Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the Tree of Life and may go through the gates into the city.  Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.”  (Revelation 22:14 [show/hide]Revelation 22:14 [14]Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life and that they may enter the city by the gates. (ESV)
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–15)

4. Yeshua tells us that anyone trying to climb in by some other way is a thief and robber:

“Very truly I tell you Pharisees, anyone who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber.”  (John 10:1 [show/hide]John 10:1 I Am the Good Shepherd [10:1]"Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door but climbs in by another way, that man is a thief and a robber. (ESV)
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)


During this period of self-examination and soul-searching,
sin is confessed and remorse is expressed.

That None Would Perish

God’s desire is that everyone would repent and no one would perish. (Matthew 18:14 [show/hide]Matthew 18:14 [14]So it is not the will of my Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish. (ESV)
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)

That was the reason for instituting atonement and for sending Yeshua the Messiah.  His very name means salvation!

Yeshua did not come to judge or condemn, “but to save the world through Him.”  (John 3:17 [show/hide]John 3:17 [17]For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. (ESV)
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Even while dying on the execution stake between two criminals, Yeshua offered a place in Paradise to the one who placed last minute trust in Him.

Yeshua told him, “This day you will be with Me in Paradise.”  (Luke 23:43 [show/hide]Luke 23:43 [43]And he said to him, "Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise." (ESV)
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)

Even until someone’s very last breath, the gateway to salvation through the Messiah Yeshua is still open.


Praying at the Western Wall

As we pass through these Ten Days of Awe (Yamim Nora’im), let’s take time to get our lives right with God and one another.

This is the time to let go and forgive, as well as to seek forgiveness.

These Ten Days of Awe are an opportunity to seriously seek the face of God, to examine our lives, and repent before Him for our sins.

It’s a time to call upon His mercy for ourselves, our families, our nations, and for Israel.

As Jewish People turn their hearts to God in repentance and examine their ways during this week, please pray fervently that they will see Yeshua in the prophecies of their Bible and enter through the Gate to Eternal Life.

Sylvia, please click with your Special Days of Awe offering of $100, $50, $250, $500 or $1000

“Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions.”  (Psalm 51:1 [show/hide]Psalm 51:1 Create in Me a Clean Heart, O God To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David, when Nathan the prophet went to him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba. [51:1]Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.
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Sep 29 2014

Leaving “Victim” Behind

Tag: Marriage/CouplesSage @ 2:15 pm

“To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example.” 1 Peter 2:21 [show/hide]1 Peter 2:21 [21]For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps. (ESV)
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Politically correct notions in the culture today would lead us to believe that we all have reasons to be angry about the biases arrayed against us. The supposed discrimination extends to girls, boys, the elderly, homosexuals, drug addicts, alcoholics, atheists, those who are overweight, balding, short, undereducated, women (representing 51.2 percent of the population), and now, white men. There’s hardly a person alive who doesn’t have a claim against an oppressor in one context or another. I (JCD) call it “the victimization of everyone.”

Unquestionably, there are disadvantaged people among us who need legal protection and special consideration, including some racial minorities. But the idea that the majority is exploited and disrespected is terribly destructive—first, because the belief that “they’re out to get me” paralyzes us and leads to hopelessness and despair; second, because it divides people into separate and competing self‐interest groups and pits them against each other.

The Scripture gives us a better way. It tells us to thank God every day for His blessings and to focus our attention not on ourselves, but on those who are less fortunate. Not once does it support or sanction the curse of victimization. Do not yield to it.

Just between us…

================

Do we usually blame someone or something for our circumstances?

How does playing the role of a victim make us tend to give up?

What does God promise us for our earthly struggles?

Lord, forgive us for our quickness to shift into “victim thinking.” Show us which hard things we can change and which we should accept as Your loving best for us. And grant us Your grace and joy in both circumstances. Amen.

- Bible Gateway.Com

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Sep 29 2014

Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon - 29th September

Tag: Verse of the DaySage @ 2:11 pm

Morning

=======

“Behold, if the leprosy have covered all his flesh, he shall pronounce him clean that hath the plague.” / Leviticus 13:13 [show/hide]Leviticus 13:13 [13]then the priest shall look, and if the leprous disease has covered all his body, he shall pronounce him clean of the disease; it has all turned white, and he is clean. (ESV)
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Strange enough this regulation appears, yet there was wisdom in it, for the throwing out of the disease proved that the constitution was sound. This morning it may be well for us to see the typical teaching of so singular a rule. We, too, are lepers, and may read the law of the leper as applicable to ourselves. When a man sees himself to be altogether lost and ruined, covered all over with the defilement of sin, and no part free from pollution; when he disclaims all righteousness of his own, and pleads guilty before the Lord, then is he clean through the blood of Jesus, and the grace of God. Hidden, unfelt, unconfessed iniquity is the true leprosy, but when sin is seen and felt it has received its death blow, and the Lord looks with eyes of mercy upon the soul afflicted with it. Nothing is more deadly than self-righteousness, or more hopeful than contrition. We must confess that we are “nothing else but sin,” for no confession short of this will be the whole truth, and if the Holy Spirit be at work with us, convincing us of sin, there will be no difficulty about making such an acknowledgment–it will spring spontaneously from our lips. What comfort does the text afford to those under a deep sense of sin! Sin mourned and confessed, however black and foul, shall never shut a man out from the Lord Jesus. Whosoever cometh unto him, he will in no wise cast out. Though dishonest as the thief, though unchaste as the woman who was a sinner, though fierce as Saul of Tarsus, though cruel as Manasseh, though rebellious as the prodigal, the great heart of love will look upon the man who feels himself to have no soundness in him, and will pronounce him clean, when he trusts in Jesus crucified. Come to him, then, poor heavy-laden sinner,

Come needy, come guilty, come loathsome and bare;

You can’t come too filthy–come just as you are.

Evening

=======

“I found him whom my soul loveth: I held him, and would not let him go.” / Song of Solomon 3:4 [show/hide]Song of Solomon 3:4 [4]Scarcely had I passed them when I found him whom my soul loves. I held him, and would not let him go until I had brought him into my mother's house, and into the chamber of her who conceived me.
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Does Christ receive us when we come to him, notwithstanding all our past sinfulness? Does he never chide us for having tried all other refuges first?

And is there none on earth like him? Is he the best of all the good, the fairest of all the fair? Oh, then let us praise him! Daughters of Jerusalem, extol him with timbrel and harp! Down with your idols, up with the Lord Jesus.

Now let the standards of pomp and pride be trampled under foot, but let the cross of Jesus, which the world frowns and scoffs at, be lifted on high. O for a throne of ivory for our King Solomon! Let him be set on high forever, and let my soul sit at his footstool, and kiss his feet, and wash them with my tears. Oh, how precious is Christ! How can it be that I have thought so little of him? How is it I can go abroad for joy or comfort when he is so full, so rich, so satisfying. Fellow believer, make a covenant with thine heart that thou wilt never depart from him, and ask thy Lord to ratify it. Bid him set thee as a signet upon his finger, and as a bracelet upon his arm. Ask him to bind thee about him, as the bride decketh herself with ornaments, and as the bridegroom putteth on his jewels. I would live in Christ’s heart; in the clefts of that rock my soul would eternally abide. The sparrow hath made a house, and the swallow a nest for herself where she may lay her young, even thine altars, O Lord of hosts, my King and my God; and so too would I make my nest, my home, in thee, and never from thee may the soul of thy turtle dove go forth again, but may I nestle close to thee, O Jesus, my true and only rest.

“When my precious Lord I find,

All my ardent passions glow;

Him with cords of love I bind,

Hold and will not let him go.”

- Bible Gateway.Com

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Sep 29 2014

Infant salvation

Tag: Marriage/CouplesSage @ 2:05 pm

‘Is it well with the child? And she answered, It is well.’ 2 Kings 4:26 [show/hide]2 Kings 4:26 [26]Run at once to meet her and say to her, 'Is all well with you? Is all well with your husband? Is all well with the child?'" And she answered, "All is well." (ESV)
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Suggested Further Reading: 2 Samuel 12:13 [show/hide]2 Samuel 12:13 [13]David said to Nathan, "I have sinned against the LORD." And Nathan said to David, "The LORD also has put away your sin; you shall not die. (ESV)
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–23

The child is saved, if snatched away by death as we are, on another ground than that of rites and ceremonies and the will of man. On what ground, then, do we believe the child to be saved? It is saved because it is elect. In the compass of election, in the Lamb’s book of life, we believe there shall be found written millions of souls who are only shown on earth, and then stretch their wings for heaven. They are saved, too, because they were redeemed by the precious blood of Jesus Christ. He who shed his blood for all his people, bought them with the same price with which he redeemed their parents, and therefore they are saved because Christ was sponsor for them, and suffered in their room and stead. They are saved, again, not without regeneration, for, ‘except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.’ No doubt, in some mysterious manner the Spirit of God regenerates the infant soul, and it enters into glory made meet to be a partaker of the inheritance of the saints in light. That this is possible is proved from Scripture instances. John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit from his mother’s womb. We read of Jeremiah also, that the same had occurred to him; and of Samuel we find that while yet a babe the Lord called him. We believe, therefore, that even before the intellect can work, God, who works not by the will of man, nor by blood, but by the mysterious agency of his Holy Spirit, creates the infant soul a new creature in Christ Jesus, and then it enters into the rest which ‘remaineth … to the people of God.’

For meditation: Men cannot affect the eternal destiny of infants, but ‘Shall not the judge of all the earth do right?’ (Genesis 18:25 [show/hide]Genesis 18:25 [25]Far be it from you to do such a thing, to put the righteous to death with the wicked, so that the righteous fare as the wicked! Far be that from you! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do what is just?" (ESV)
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). Spurgeon asks ‘Where did David expect to go? Why, to heaven surely. Then his child must have been there, for he said, “I shall go to him”. I do not hear him say the same of Absalom … He had no hope for that rebellious son.’ (Psalm 23:6 [show/hide]Psalm 23:6 [6]Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever.
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; 2 Samuel 12:23 [show/hide]2 Samuel 12:23 [23]But now he is dead. Why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he will not return to me." (ESV)
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). He also mentions Ezekiel 16:21 [show/hide]Ezekiel 16:21 [21]that you slaughtered my children and delivered them up as an offering by fire to them? (ESV)
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where God describes sacrificed infants as ‘my children.’

Sermon no. 411 / 29 September (1861) —   Charles Spurgeon

- Bible Gateway.Com

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Sep 29 2014

Declension from first love

Tag: Sermons - Charles SpurgeonSage @ 2:01 pm

“Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.” Revelation 2:4 [show/hide]Revelation 2:4 [4]But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. (ESV)
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Suggested Further Reading: John 15:9-14 [show/hide]John 15:9-14 [9]As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. [10]If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father's commandments and abide in his love. [11]These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. [12]"This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. [13]Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. [14]You are my friends if you do what I command you. (ESV)
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There are some people who always live upon what they have been. I speak very plainly now. There is a brother in this church who may take it to himself; I hope he will. It is not very many years ago since he said to me, when I asked him why he did not do something—“Well, I have done my share; I used to do this, and I have done the other; I have done so and so.” Oh, may the Lord deliver him, and all of us, from living on “has beens!” It will never do to say we have done a thing. Suppose, for a solitary moment, the world should say, “I have turned round; I will stand still.” Let the sea say, “I have been ebbing and flowing these many years; I will ebb and flow no more.” Let the sun say, “I have been shining, and I have been rising and setting for many days; I have done this enough to earn me a goodly name; I will stand still;” and let the moon wrap herself up in veils of darkness, and say, “I have illuminated many a night, and I have lighted many a weary traveller across the moors; I will shut up my lamp and be dark for ever.” Brethren, when you and I cease to labour, let us cease to live. God has no intention to let us live a useless life. But mark this; when we leave our first works, there is no question about our having lost our first love; that is sure. If there be strength remaining, if there be still power mentally and physically, if we cease from our office, if we abstain from our labours, there is no solution of this question which an honest conscience will accept, except this, “Thou hast lost thy first love, and, therefore, thou hast neglected thy first works.”

For meditation: Past love is no substitute for present expressions of it

(Philemon: 5-7,20). Present work is no guarantee that love cannot be lost in the future (Philemon: 24; 2 Timothy 4:10 [show/hide]2 Timothy 4:10 [10]For Demas, in love with this present world, has deserted me and gone to Thessalonica. Crescens has gone to Galatia, Titus to Dalmatia. (ESV)
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).

Sermon no. 217 / 29 September (Preached 26 September 1858) —   Charles Spurgeon

- Bible Gateway.Com

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Sep 29 2014

C.S. Lewis - the right direction leads not only to peace but to knowledge.

Tag: C.S. Lewis: Mere ChristianitySage @ 1:56 pm

C.S. Lewis Daily

Remember that, as I said, the right direction leads not only to peace but to knowledge. When a man is getting better he understands more and more clearly the evil that is still left in him. When a man is getting worse he understands his own badness less and less. A moderately bad man knows he is not very good:

a thoroughly bad man thinks he is all right. This is common sense, really. You understand sleep when you are awake, not while you are sleeping. You can see mistakes in arithmetic when your mind is working properly: while you are making them you cannot see them. You can understand the nature of drunkenness when you are sober, not when you are drunk. Good people know about both good and evil: bad people do not know about either.

From Mere Christianity

-Bible Gateway.Com

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Sep 29 2014

Three threats to America, Israel & the Church in the Mideast. Video of my address at Moody Bible Institute.

Tag: Israel: Middle EastSage @ 1:51 pm

From Flash Traffic Blog Wordpress.Com

Three threats to America, Israel & the Church in the Mideast. Video of my address at Moody Bible Institute.

by joelcrosenberg

· Receive every blog post automatically via the RSS feed.

Speaking at Moody Bible Institute's chapel on "Three Threats To America, Israel & The Church In The Middle East."

Speaking at Moody Bible Institute’s chapel on “Three Threats To America, Israel & The Church In The Middle East.”

It was an honor to be on the campus of Moody Bible Institute in downtown Chicago in early September. Several weeks ago, at the invitation of Dr. Paul Nyquist, president of MBI, and Dr. Michael Rydelnik, a professor and head of the Jewish Studies Program, I was invited to teach a class on the Holocaust, another class on modern Israeli politics and society, speak on an evening panel on “Israel & The Gaza Conflict,” tape two programs for Moody Radio. I also had the joy and honor of addressing the student body — some 1,600 future Christian leaders — one morning at chapel.

· Here are my notes for the address I delivered: “Three Threats Facing America, Israel and the Church in the Middle East.”

· Here is a link to the video of my address at Moody, if you would like to watch it online.

An excerpt:

Followers of Jesus Christ who love Israel and understand God’s Biblical plan for Israel must not be blind to the suffering in the Arab, Iranian, and Muslim world….nor deaf to their cries for help…..nor dull to the terror and tyranny they face.

We are witnessing a Radical Islamic offensive across the Mideast, from Gaza to Syria to Iraq.

Leaders in Washington and across the world have been slow to see, and slow to act.

But the Church must step up. We serve the King of glory. Our King was born in the epicenter. He died and rose again in the epicenter. He is coming back to the epicenter — and He’s coming soon.

So we must help our brothers and sisters who are being persecuted in the Middle East. We must show Christ’s love and compassion to Jews, Muslims and Christians in the epicenter.

———————————-

· Learn more about The Joshua Fund (www.joshuafund.com). This is an organization my wife and I founded in 2006 to educate and mobilize Christians to bless Israel and her Arab neighbors in the name of Jesus, including caring for the poor and needy with food and other humanitarian relief. Read our 2013 Donor Report. Please pray for our team, especially as they care for people in the rocket zone. And please prayerfully consider making a generous, tax deductible, secure, on-line contribution.

· We are moving up release of my new thriller about the ISIS threat, THE THIRD TARGET. It will be published on Jan. 6.

· To pre-order THE THIRD TARGET, please click here.

· Order The Auschwitz Escape today — it’s available now in hardcover, e-book and audio formats. You can get it online, or in your favorite bookstore.

· Follow on Twitter — @joelcrosenberg

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Sep 29 2014

Jihad Watch: News Index - 29th September 2014

Tag: Global CommentarySage @ 1:43 pm

From Jihad Watch.Org

NYU Prof: Myles Standish beheaded too; we’re all as savage as the Islamic State

Sep 28, 2014 11:33 pm | Robert Spencer

In a certain sense it is true: the dividing line between good and evil is not between one group and another; rather, it is within every human heart. This article is trying to make that point, but also to go farther than that, to reinforce the fashionable relativism of the intelligentsia: no moral distinctions can […]

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Australia: Slain jihadi’s family stones media at funeral

Sep 28, 2014 10:49 pm | Robert Spencer

Numan Haider stabbed a police officer and a federal agent. He threatened to kill Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott. He was shot dead in the midst of his jihad attack on the police. And apparently, from their actions at the funeral, his family blames the Australian media. Perhaps we should send them some of our […]

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OK beheader was shouting “Islamic phrases” during murderous rampage

Sep 28, 2014 10:37 pm | Robert Spencer

“Islamic phrases”? What could they have been? Maybe “Islam is a religion of peace”? “Islam respects the People of the Book”? “Islam is completely compatible with democracy”? “Concern about jihad terror equals Islamophobia”? “Fired Muslim convert store-worker who beheaded female colleague after losing his job was ‘shouting Islamic phrases’ as he carried out his bloody […]

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OK beheader’s mosque imam says AFDI ads should be outlawed

Sep 28, 2014 10:24 pm | Robert Spencer

Imad Enchassi, imam of the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City, posted this on Facebook the day before a member of his mosque, Jah’Keem Yisrael, beheaded one of his coworkers and tried to behead another at Vaughan Foods in Moore, Oklahoma: “Hate speech and ads that crosses freedom of speech and encouraged violence ought to […]

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Malaysian explains why he joined Islamic State: Muhammad demands it

Sep 28, 2014 08:24 pm | Robert Spencer

“The people who went there didn’t go for fun or adventure, it’s for Islam.” But don’t they know that the Islamic State is not Islamic and has nothing to do with Islam? You mean, they’re misunderstanding Islam even in modern, moderate Malaysia? How could this have happened? Will Obama send Kerry over there to straighten […]

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Oklahoma: Another Muslim threatens to behead coworker

Sep 28, 2014 06:41 pm | Robert Spencer

This happened on Friday, the same day Jah’Keem Yisrael beheaded one of his coworkers and tried to behead another. Both have demonstrated allegiance to the Islamic State — Yisrael with the one-finger signal and Murithi in words. Both were fired from their jobs, which means that both will probably be classified as “workplace violence,” not […]

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White House: Too early to know if OK beheading was terror or workplace violence

Sep 28, 2014 05:58 pm | Robert Spencer

Jah’Keem Yisrael was shouting Islamic phrases as he stabbed and beheaded. He is clearly a devout Muslim. He has photos on his Facebook page glorifying beheadings and showing him giving the one-finger sign of allegiance to the Islamic State. What does all that signify for the Islamic State? Workplace violence, of course! They haven’t ruled […]

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Pro-jihad journalist asked to leave “Palestinian” university because she is Jewish

Sep 28, 2014 05:16 pm | Robert Spencer

Amira Hass is an Israeli journalist for the Leftist publication Haaretz. She is strongly in favor of the “Palestinian” jihad. But she was asked to leave a conference at the “Palestinian” Birzeit University, and warned “This is for your own protection [from the students].” She writes: “And I was at that moment reminded of the […]

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UK: KFC customer refused hand-wipe to avoid offending Muslims

Sep 28, 2014 04:25 pm | Robert Spencer

More absurd self-subjugation in Deranged Britannia. The local Muslim groups haven’t even demanded this; KFC just did it preemptively. Isn’t assuming that Muslims will grow enraged over alcohol-based hand-wipes a kind of “Islamophobia”? “Leicester KFC customer shocked as he is refused hand-wipe because of branch’s halal policy,” by Yasmin Duffin, Leicester Mercury, September 28, 2014 […]

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OK beheader: “Sharia law is coming!” — posted photos of beheadings on FB

Sep 28, 2014 08:47 am | Robert Spencer

While the FBI pretends that Oklahoma beheader Jah’Keem Yisrael’s Facebook page doesn’t exist and goes in search of a motive that the social media page makes abundantly clear, I used the page yesterday to show the dishonesty of the mainstream media and the beheader’s mosque. And now even the mainstream media is having to take […]

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Sep 28 2014

The Number Of Volcanic Eruptions Is Increasing And That Could Lead To An Extremely Cold Winter

Tag: Global CommentarySage @ 5:39 pm

From Prophecy News Watch.Com

The number of volcanoes that are erupting continues to rise, and scientists cannot seem to explain why this is happening. In 2013, we witnessed the most volcanic eruptions worldwide that we have ever seen in a single year, and this increased activity has carried over into 2014.

In recent months, we have seen major volcanoes roar to life in Russia, Peru, Hawaii, Reunion Island, Indonesia, and all over Alaska. It is highly unusual for so many volcanoes to all be erupting at the same time. According to Volcano Discovery, a whopping 34 volcanoes are erupting around the globe right now.

This is sending a massive amount of dust and ash into the upper atmosphere, and it may explain why many parts of the planet are experiencing strangely cold weather at the moment. If this trend continues, we could potentially be facing years of crop failures and widespread famines all over the world.

And what we have witnessed already may just be the beginning. There are several more very large volcanoes around the globe that scientists are extremely concerned about right now.

For example, just check out what is going on in the Philippines…

Mayon Volcano in the province of Albay was placed on “Alert Level 3″ on Monday evening, September 15, after showing signs of “relatively high unrest,” the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) said.

In a bulletin issued at 10:00 pm, PHIVOLCS observed 39 rockfall events from 5:00 am to 8:00 pm on September 15, symptoms of the build-up of magma at the summit dome. At least 32 low frequency volcanic earthquakes were also recorded, indicating magma intrusion or volcanic gas activity.

PHIVOLCS-DOST raised the alert status of Mayon Volcano from Alert Level 2 to Alert Level 3 which is equivalent to a “Critical Alert” in the agency’s 5-level alert system. This means that the volcano is exhibiting relatively high unrest, magma is at the crater, and that an eruption is possible within weeks.

But of even greater concern is Bardarbunga. It is the largest volcano system in Iceland, and a major eruption could potentially be absolutely catastrophic…

This time the threat of an eruption – potentially even more powerful than the one in 2010 – is posed by Bardarbunga, the biggest of Iceland’s 30 or so volcanic systems. Located roughly at the country’s centre, the volcano’s 10-kilometre caldera lies several hundred metres beneath Vatnajokull, Europe’s largest glacier by volume.

Scientists are taking the latest rumblings seriously: roughly 8000 years ago, after all, the volcanic leviathan let rip with the largest eruption of the past 10,000 years.

“It is very difficult to predict exactly what will happen with an eruption,” says Monash University vulcanologist Professor Ray Cas, who is president of the International Association for Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth.
Scientists tell us that over the last 10,000 years Bardarbunga has produced “more lava than any other volcano on the planet.”

If we witness a full scale eruption at Bardarbunga, the cancellation of a few thousand flights may be the smallest of our concerns.

The truth is that we might be looking at the coldest winter that any of us have ever seen in the northern hemisphere.

But don’t just take my word for it. The following is from a British newspaper article entitled “Icelandic volcano could trigger Britain’s coldest winter EVER this year”…

Depending on the force of the explosion, minute particles thrust beyond the earth’s atmosphere can trigger DECADES of chaotic weather patterns.

Tiny pieces of debris act as billions of shields reflecting the sun’s light away from earth meaning winter temperatures could plunge LOWER THAN EVER before while summer will be devoid of sunshine.

The first effect could be a bitterly cold winter to arrive in weeks with thermometers plunging into minus figures and not rising long before next summer.
If this did happen, there is nothing that we could do to change it.

We would just have to deal with it.

This is a kind of “climate change” that everyone can agree on. It is well known that volcanic eruptions can substantially lower global temperatures. In fact, some global warming theorists are already blaming increased volcanic activity for why temperatures have not been rising in recent years…

“In the last decade, the amount of volcanic aerosol in the stratosphere has increased, so more sunlight is being reflected back into space,” said lead author Benjamin Santer, climate scientist at Laurence Livermore National Laboratory, in a press release. “This has created a natural cooling of the planet and has partly offset the increase in surface and atmospheric temperatures due to human influence.”

But if Bardarbunga fully erupts, we could be looking at something a lot worse than a little “global cooling”.

We could potentially be facing winters that never seem to end.

It has happened before in recorded history many times. The following list comes from Wikipedia…

The effects of volcanic eruptions on recent winters are modest in scale, but historically have been significant.

Most recently, the 1991 explosion of Mount Pinatubo, a stratovolcano in the Philippines, cooled global temperatures for about 2–3 years.

In 1883, the explosion of Krakatoa (Krakatau) created volcanic winter-like conditions. The four years following the explosion were unusually cold, and the winter of 1887-1888 included powerful blizzards. Record snowfalls were recorded worldwide.

The 1815 eruption of Mount Tambora, a stratovolcano in Indonesia, occasioned mid-summer frosts in New York State and June snowfalls in New England and Newfoundland and Labrador in what came to be known as the “Year Without a Summer” of 1816.

A paper written by Benjamin Franklin in 1783 blamed the unusually cool summer of 1783 on volcanic dust coming from Iceland, where the eruption of Laki volcano had released enormous amounts of sulfur dioxide, resulting in the death of much of the island’s livestock and a catastrophic famine which killed a quarter of the Icelandic population. Northern hemisphere temperatures dropped by about 1 °C in the year following the Laki eruption.

In 1600, the Huaynaputina in Peru erupted. Tree ring studies show that 1601 was cold. Russia had its worst famine in 1601-1603. From 1600 to 1602, Switzerland, Latvia and Estonia had exceptionally cold winters. The wine harvest was late in 1601 in France, and in Peru and Germany, wine production collapsed. Peach trees bloomed late in China, and Lake Suwa in Japan froze early.
The possibility of volcanic eruptions substantially cooling our weather is the biggest “climate threat” that we are facing by far.

Without warm summers and plenty of sunshine, our crops will not succeed.

And global food supplies are already stretched to the limit. Just this week we learned that one out of every nine people in the world does not have enough food to eat.

What would happen if global food production was cut by 10 or 20 percent for a few years?

So keep an eye on Bardarbunga and the other major volcanoes around the planet that are rumbling right now.

They may just play a major role in our immediate future.
Read more at http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/2014/September24/243.html#5LPS46fJIAu0VC35.99

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Sep 28 2014

Computer Models Tell Us That This Ebola Pandemic Could Soon Kill Millions

Tag: Health NewsSage @ 5:33 pm

From Prophecy News Watch.Com

We could potentially be on the verge of the greatest health crisis that any of us have ever seen. The number of Ebola cases in Africa has approximately doubled over the past three weeks, and scientific computer models tell us that this Ebola pandemic could ultimately end up killing millions of us - especially if it starts spreading on other continents.

At first, many assumed that this Ebola outbreak would be just like all the others - that it would flare up for a little while and then it would completely fade away. But that has not happened this time. Instead, this epidemic has seemed to pick up momentum with each passing week.

Despite extraordinary precautions, hundreds of health workers have gotten the virus, and the head of the CDC says that the spread of Ebola is “spiraling out of control” and that it is “going to get worse in the very near future.” For those that have thought that all of this talk about Ebola was just “fearmongering”, it is time for you to wake up.

Right now, the World Health Organization says that we could see the total number of Ebola cases reach 20,000 nine months from now. But computer models created for the National Institutes of Health and the Department of Defense are projecting that Ebola could soon be growing at a rate of 20,000 cases per month…

The Ebola epidemic affecting West Africa is predicted to last a further 12 to 18 months, according to U.S. scientists.

Epidemiologists have been creating computer models of the Ebola epidemic for the National Institutes of Health and the Defense Department.

The model they have created is a far less optimistic estimate than that of the World Health Organization (WHO), which last month said it hoped to contain the outbreak within nine months and 20,000 total cases.

The New York Times reports that various researchers have said the virus could grow at a rate that could be closer to 20,000 per month.

The WHO is sticking to its estimates, a spokesman said Friday.
Other scientists are even more pessimistic.

For example, a model created jointly by a researcher at the University of Tokyo and a researcher at Arizona State University has produced a “worst-case scenario” of 277,124 Ebola cases by the end of this year…

The Eurosurveillance paper, by two researchers from the University of Tokyo and Arizona State University, attempts to derive what the reproductive rate has been in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. (Note for actual epidemiology geeks: The calculation is for the effective reproductive number, pegged to a point in time, hence actually Rt.) They come up with an R of at least 1, and in some cases 2; that is, at certain points, sick persons have caused disease in two others.

You can see how that could quickly get out of hand, and in fact, that is what the researchers predict. Here is their stop-you-in-your-tracks assessment:

In a worst-case hypothetical scenario, should the outbreak continue with recent trends, the case burden could gain an additional 77,181 to 277,124 cases by the end of 2014.

That is a jaw-dropping number.
If we do see an explosion like that, how many millions of cases will we see by the time 2015 is through?

A different model has produced an even more jaw-dropping number.

An “econometric simulation model” created by Francis Smart at Michigan State University is predicting that a whopping 1.2 million people will die from Ebola in the next six months…

An econometric simulation model based on the assumption the World Health Organization and others will be unable to control the Ebola outbreak in West Africa predicts 1.2 million people will die from the disease in the next six months.

Six months is the minimum time the WHO projects will be necessary to contain the epidemic.

In his analysis, econometrics research assistant Francis Smart at Michigan State University took seriously the conclusions of Canadian researchers who proved the strain of Ebola in the current West African epidemic could go airborne.

The Ebola virus could be transmitted between humans through breathing, Smart says.

In developing the model, Smart began with WHO’s Aug. 28 statement that the Ebola epidemic in West Africa could afflict more than 20,000 people before it is brought under control.
That has got to be the worst possible number, right?

Wrong.

The other day a prominent German virologist came forward and declared that “it is too late” to stop Ebola and that five million people will die in Sierra Leone and Liberia alone…

A top German virologist has caused shockwaves by asserting that it’s too late to halt the spread of Ebola in Sierra Leone and Liberia and that five million people will die, noting that efforts should now be focused on stopping the transmission of the virus to other countries.

Jonas Schmidt-Chanasit of the Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine in Hamburg told Germany’s Deutsche Welle that hope is all but lost for the inhabitants of Sierra Leone and Liberia and that the virus will only “burn itself out” when it has infected the entire population and killed five million people.

“The right time to get this epidemic under control in these countries has been missed,” said Schmidt-Chanasit. “That time was May and June. “Now it is too late.”
So which of the numbers discussed above are accurate?

Only time will tell.

Meanwhile, the U.S. federal government is feverishly preparing for the worst.

This week we learned that Barack Obama is going to ask Congress for 88 million dollars for the purpose of conducting “a major Ebola offensive” in Africa.

Granted, Obama will ask Congress for money at the drop of a hat these days. He wants 500 million dollars to arm the allies of ISIS and his reckless spending has been one of the primary factors why the U.S. national debt has risen by more than a trillion dollars over the past 12 months.

But it is still noteworthy.

Even more noteworthy is the fact that the U.S. State Department has just ordered 160,000 Hazmat suits…

The U.S. State Department has ordered 160,000 Hazmat suits for Ebola, prompting concerns that the federal government is anticipating the rapid spread of a virus that has already claimed an unprecedented number of lives.

In a press release posted by Market Watch, Lakeland Industries, a manufacturer of industrial protective clothing for first responders, announced that it had signaled its intention “to join the fight against the spread of Ebola” by encouraging other suppliers to meet the huge demand created by the U.S. State Department’s order of 160,000 hazmat suits.

“With the U.S. State Department alone putting out a bid for 160,000 suits, we encourage all protective apparel companies to increase their manufacturing capacity for sealed seam garments so that our industry can do its part in addressing this threat to global health,” states the press release.

The huge bulk order of hazmat suits for Ebola has stoked concerns that the U.S. government expects the virus to continue to ravage countries in west Africa and may also be concerned about an outbreak inside the United States.
You don’t order that many Hazmat suits unless you are anticipating an outbreak of apocalyptic proportions.

And the CDC has just issued a six page Ebola checklist to hospitals to help them spot potential Ebola patients in America…

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, warning hospitals and doctors that “now is the time to prepare,” has issued a six-page Ebola “checklist” to help healthcare workers quickly determine if patients are infected.

While the CDC does not believe that there are new cases of Ebola in the United States, the assumption in the checklist is that it is only a matter of time before the virus hits home.
Let us hope and pray that these precautions do not become necessary.

Because if Ebola starts spreading like wildfire in this country, we are going to see pain and suffering beyond anything that most of us have ever imagined.

Just consider what a health worker on the front lines is seeing on a day to day basis…

I wake up each morning – if I have managed to sleep – wondering if this is really happening, or if it is a horror movie. In decades of humanitarian work I have never witnessed such relentless suffering of fellow human beings or felt so completely paralysed and utterly overwhelmed at our inability to provide anything but the most basic, and sometimes less than adequate, care.

I am supervising the suspect tent, which has room for 25 patients who are likely to have Ebola – 80-90% of those we test have the virus. We administer treatment for malaria, start patients on antibiotics, paracetamol, multivitamins, rehydration supplements, food, water and juice while they wait for their results. Sometimes people have arrived too late and die shortly after arriving.

In one afternoon last week I watched five seemingly fit, healthy, young men die. I gave the first a bottle of oral rehydration solution and came back with another for the second. In the half a minute or so in which I had been away the first man died, his bottle of water spilt across the floor. The four others followed in quick succession.
Ebola is truly a terrible, terrible disease.

The moment that cases start popping up in the United States, all of our lives will instantly change.
Read more at http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/2014/September24/242.html#slTKEkEAVLBSPX7j.99

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