Oct 21, 2019

Tolerance Will not be Tolerated

The political divide between the right and left has become incredibly wide. In fact, I did not think it would be possible to have a functioning society with this level of political discord. With each passing week, we manage to find a new low.

The latest milestone is that tolerance itself has become a dirty word. If you tolerate your enemy in any way, you are guilty of their political sins. Forget about Jesus’ sermon about loving your enemies. Hate is now the new virtue.

The Friendship between Ellen DeGeneres and George W. Bush has been in many news reports. The two made headlines when DeGeneres was spotted sitting next to Bush and his wife, Laura Bush, at a Dallas Cowboys football game. Ellen defended their friendship, saying, ‘We’re all different and I think that we’ve forgotten that that’s okay, that we’re all different.’

CNN and moderator Anderson Cooper were criticized for ending the night with a question about the TV host’s unlikely friendship with the former president. Cooper could have just as well asked if it’s odd that Trump has black friends. As a member of the leftist cabal, DeGeneres clearly violated some rule with her coziness with Bush.

I knew the day would come when Shepard Smith would leave Fox News. Smith, the network’s chief news anchor and managing editor of its breaking news unit, has worked at Fox News since its inception in 1996. He made headlines for his on-air criticism of President Donald Trump.

Smith was clearly working for the wrong network. He infused his show with a demonstrably hateful, contemptuous, and toxic anti-Trump tone, and his ‘reporting’ often sounds like Democrat talking-point propaganda. He frequently drew criticism from primetime stars like Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson.

I’m sure Shepard Smith will easily get a job at another network. His long career at Fox News may prove to be a problem. Someone will dig up old praises Smith had for a conservative, and that will be the end for him. The former Fox News head Roger Ailes having called Shepard Smith his “go-to guy” for “hard news” might as well be praise from Satan himself.

Megyn Kelly didn’t last long at NBC because she had worked for Fox News. The staff hated her because she, in their mind, could never get the smell of the so-called conservative network off of her flesh. It didn’t matter that Kelly had been a foe of President Trump. NBC had to pay out $25 million to rid itself of her.

Senator Cory Booker recently made an appearance at a CNN town hall, in which he advocated for religious intolerance. He basically suggests that Catholic schools across the country should shut down because they don’t endorse his homosexual lifestyle:

“And so for me, I cannot allow, as a leader, that people are going to use religion as a justification for discrimination. I could respect your religious freedoms, but also protect people from discrimination, and as I said in the earlier answer, I grew up in a household where my parents talked to me about how people used to use religion to justify the discrimination against African Americans.”

I don’t understand where he thinks he has the right to say “I cannot allow.” Catholics have a right to act in ways that don’t harm anybody else, and if they choose to have an institution that elevates heterosexuality above homosexuality, that is not harming anyone else. Booker doesn’t have to participate in that institution.

The sexual views of the Catholic church are based on natural law. For the same reason the Catholics are against abortion and contraception, they’re also against homosexual activity. Namely, they believe that the end of the sexual act is procreation, and that because sex is directed toward procreation and toward the deepening of relationships that end with procreation, heterosexual sex ought to be favored over homosexual activity.

If we cut to the chase on tolerance, the last thing to go will be patience for anyone who claims to be a believer in Jesus Christ. By having given any forms of intolerance a green light, murder will quickly become a reasonable punishment.

“Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name [than Jesus Christ] under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).

“When the Lamb broke the fifth seal, I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God, and because of the testimony which they had maintained” (Revelation 6:9).

–Todd


Thinking on Gog-Magog

Regions directly north of Jerusalem are being stirred to turmoil by the whirlwinds of prophetic destiny. Therefore it is the responsibility of watchmen on the wall to closely examine all things powerfully affecting that area so concentric to Bible prophecy yet to be fulfilled.

The specific prophecy, of course, involves that given about the Gog-Magog battle in Ezekiel chapters 38 and 39. We have been watching the stage setting for some time. Russia, which we believe to be Rosh, Iran (the greatest part of which is almost certainly Persia), and Turkey, which we believe to be a reference to most of what was ancient Togarmah, have been coalescing to Israel’s north for quite some time. This alone can be seen as nothing short of astonishing. Now, with the whole region directly to Israel’s north lighting up with what looks to be prophetic pyrotechnics, the spiritually attuned discerner’s observational powers should be fully turned on and in focus.

We have some from the Christian media community making declarations of what developments mean.

Pat Robertson said the following on his 700 Club show: “I am absolutely appalled that the United States is going to betray those Democratic forces in northern Syria, that we possibly are going to allow the Turkish to come in against the Kurds.” In typical “word of knowledge” power he claims to have, he offered further: “The President of the United States is in danger of losing the mandate of Heaven if he permits this to happen.”

While I can’t and don’t wish to be able to claim such “word of knowledge” ability to pontificate, I’m concerned, but not necessarily against, the president’s decision. I certainly don’t believe his decision to withdraw America from the immediate region of hostilities will doom Mr. Trump to a loss in the 2020 presidential election.

It might just be that the move is by the very hand of God. We can know for sure that America withdrawing in such a manner has in no way slipped up on the Creator of all things. This has not escaped His omniscience.

Turkey invading northern Syria to get at rebels of the region is a serious matter. The Kurdish people are in danger. Many among them are Christians, and that is one reason for many concerns among we who pray for our brothers and sisters there. But so should we pray for all who face death and destruction in this or any military incursion. So, I, like you, don’t view all this lightly.

I do, however, consider these matters from a particularly focused perspective. Things taking place in that biblically important part of the world at this late hour in this quickly fleeting Age of Grace must be critically important. In view of all other converging signs we are discerningany such apparent stage-setting should light up the eschatological radar screens. 

It is proper to consider, I think, whether this president’s decision to remove American involvement from that specific area is God-ordained. I don’t mean that Mr. Trump might be aware of it possibly being a directive from on high. That in no way is part of this bit of prophetic pondering on my part.

We know that America is not mentioned by name in Ezekiel’s Gog-Magog prophecy, just as the nation isn’t mentioned in any prophecy by name. Here is what we do know God’s prophetic Word says about the nations observing that attack from the sidelines –the attackers we believe to be led by Russia, Iran, and Turkey.

Sheba, and Dedan, and the merchants of Tarshish, with all the young lions thereof, shall say unto thee, Art thou come to take a spoil? hast thou gathered thy company to take a prey? to carry away silver and gold, to take away cattle and goods, to take a great spoil? (Ezekiel 38:13)

My scenario-pondering is wrapped up in the following. I claim no “word of knowledge.”

With America removed from that region of interminable conflict, the other nations that presently comprise NATO and all other countries of combatant-loaning sorts might not be willing to intervene against the assault. Most consider Israel as the problem in the world. Think about the UN being almost totally against Israel on every issue.

If America isn’t there at the time of the Gog-Magog assault, these nations will almost without question not seek to oppose the coalition, led by a powerful Russia.

The removal of America at this time from this theater of future war is most interesting to contemplate. God tells in this prophecy that He, alone, will save His chosen nation. There will be no doubt about who does the rescue.

America’s military might won’t do so. That’s for sure.

–Terry

Oct 14, 2019

The Fed is Running Out of Financial Tricks

For the past several weeks, the Federal Reserve has been pouring money into the banking system. About $400 billion has been used to keep the short-term loan market from freezing up. This action was only to last a few days, but it has lasted a couple months now.

Some of you may have heard the term repurchase agreements or “repo.” In the repo market, borrowers seeking cash offer lenders collateral in the form of safe securities—frequently Treasury bonds—in exchange for a short-term loan. The term of these loans can be as short as overnight. When the Fed adds money to the financial system through the repo market, it is acting as a lender.

The Federal Reserve chair, Jerome H. Powell, said that the central bank was resuming Permanent Open Market Operations after a 5-year hiatus. It would again begin expanding its portfolio of government-backed securities, called quantitative easing (QE), and continued to leave the door open to another interest rate cut this month. While “policy is not on a preset course,” Mr. Powell said, the Fed will “act as appropriate to support continued growth.”

“Because Congress has granted the Federal Reserve significant protections from short-term political pressures, we have an obligation to clearly explain what we are doing and why. And we have an obligation to actively engage the people we serve so that they and their elected representatives can hold us accountable,” Powell said.

“My colleagues and I will soon announce measures to add to the supply of reserves over time,” Powell said at the National Association of Business Economics meeting in Denver, Colorado. “This is not QE.”

In the past, the unchecked printing of money has always resulted in hyper-inflation. It is amazing that we have been able to avoid calamity by simply calling it QE. Eventually, people will realize what is taking place, and they will run for the door.

The federal budget deficit for 2019 is estimated at $984 billion, a hefty 4.7 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) and the highest since 2012, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said last week. I looked at the Fed’s website for Sep 30, 2018, to Sep 30, 2019, and the year deficit was $1.2 trillion. There is at least $200 billion of bonds that need to be issued to cover the bonds that were allowed to expire between February and September.

The Fed now needs to issue a trillion dollars in debt each month to cover bonds that have a short duration. Our total national debt currently stands at nearly $23 trillion.

The U.S. dollar has been rising against most global currencies because most nations have their own massive budget deficits. It is stunning to note that the reaction to this sea of red ink was for rates to drop below zero. By Oct 1, 2019, negative-yielding debt had grown to more than $18 trillion. Greece has defaulted four times on its national debt, and it has just issued its first negative yield bond.

Anyone with a basic understanding of how financial markets work knows that the day will eventually come when the Fed and Wallstreet will become powerless to prevent a monetary meltdown. The ability of us to reach levels of absolute absurdity shows that some form of supernatural intervention is at work. God is holding things together until the tribulation hour springs on humanity like a bear trap.

We are now in the longest period of positive growth in American history. Because Jesus said he would come at a time of “peace and safety,” I think the Rapture is the only explanation for why we have a Goldilocks economy.

“I heard the third living creature say, Come and see. And I looked, and behold, a black horse, and he who sat on it had a pair of scales in his hand. And I heard a voice in the midst of the four living creatures saying, A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not harm the oil and the wine” (Revelation 6:5-6).

“For when they shall say, ‘Peace and safety’; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape’” (1 Thessalonians 5:3).

–Todd


A Restraining Force

Each morning in my prayer time, I am prompted to ask that the Lord continue to restrain the evil coming against His prescription for godliness. That evil seems to be closing in like an eerie, early morning fog. But unlike such naturally occurring, gathering opaqueness, the increasingly darkening supernatural mist that is engulfing life in America today harbors genuine threat. There are real bogeymen who intend harm lurking in that satanically spawned fog.

The Lord of Heaven didn’t put the following in His Word without good reason:

And now ye know what [restrains] that [Antichrist] might be revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now [restrains] will [restrain], until [the Restrainer] be taken out of the way. And then shall [Antichrist] be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders. (2 Thessalonians 2:6-9)

All the Christian needs do to discern that this generation is being enveloped by the end-times “mystery of iniquity” fog described in the Apostle Paul’s above warning is to consider his “perilous times” forewarnings. Let us again examine just a couple of these characteristics of end-time man given in Paul’s prophecy:

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith. (2 Timothy 3:1-8)

“Lovers of Self”

This characteristic is made manifest by social media. Facebook and all other forums hold captive the minds–particularly of Millennials, many of whom live daily in deep concentration on drawing attention to themselves. This “universe of self” opens their souls to invasion by the original being that had “I trouble.” Lucifer and his many “I wills” (Isaiah 14: 14) wishes to infect every human with this attempt to take attention away from God and His prescription for conducting life in the proper way.

The fallen one, through social media forums, has found a very effective conduit for funneling the minds of human beings into channels other than those leading to godliness.

“Unholy”

This characteristic made its infectious influence known just a week or two ago. We remember the thirty-one-year-old Dallas police officer who shot and killed an African-American man in his apartment. The officer claimed she thought she was entering her own apartment and found her door unlocked. A figure came at her from within the darkened apartment, and she shot what she believed to be an attacker with her service revolver.

Having heard all that’s been said about the case, I do believe this is exactly what happened. But, she was convicted of murder and given a 10 year sentence.

In a most touching scene following the sentencing, the victim’s brother, an eighteen-year-old young man, witnessed to the woman who had killed her brother, forgiving her and urging her to accept Christ. The judge who had just sentenced her, equally moved to compassion, followed suit in hugging the condemned woman, as did the victim’s brother, then the judge gave the woman a Bible to take with her as she served her time.

The crowd outside the courtroom was outraged at the light sentence and at the judge for her compassion.

The Freedom from Religion Foundation was even more enraged in the legal sense and sought to condemn with ethic violations the judge, who happened to be an African-American like the victim and his young brother.

This rage was directed at the Bible and how the judge had “crossed the line” in giving the book to the girl. This is an infection that now permeates much of American culture and society. It is an unholy characteristic that will one day bring God’s wrath and judgment.

This corrosive, stifling, corrupting toxic cloud of evil has the effect of dividing America. The political effects are the ones that are usually at the heart of my asking for the Lord to restrain the evil. Never in my memory–and, I believe, never in American history– has there been such a powerful, all-out assault against a president. The attackers are almost as one in opposing anything that the God of Heaven has given in His Holy Word about how life should be conducted. These who assault, for the most part, want to cast aside America’s founding principles–principles the early fathers used to form this republic. To the discerning spirit, this is an alert pointing to which side of this national divide is the right side to join.

Recently, Hal Lindsey wrote of this divide. He said that so far it isn’t as bad as the Civil War in terms of guns actually being turned on each other. However, he said the following:

But in one way, our situation is worse. Even though divided over slavery, Americans of 1861 held to a similar set of values. In his second inaugural address, President Lincoln said that northerners and southerners, ‘read the same Bible and pray to the same God.’

Not anymore.

The Bible doesn’t list the United States as a major player in world politics during the Tribulation. For that reason and others, I have been saying for a long time that the United States will be drastically weakened by the time of the Tribulation. Some prophecy teachers have predicted nuclear war, or that some other weapon of mass destruction will be used against America. Many of us have hoped that between now and the Rapture, so many Americans will come to Christ, that their disappearance at the Rapture will cause the problem. (“Divide and Destroy,” Hal Lindsey, https://www.hallindsey.com/ww-10-3-2019/)

I am one of whom Hal writes. Rather, I was one of whom he writes. By that, I mean that I no longer believe it is simply the number of Christians inhabiting America that keeps America afloat as a nation-state–i.e., it isn’t the loss of Christians in large numbers that will bring America down into catastrophic collapse. We seem to be a diminishing segment of American culture in the sense of governing influence.

It is rather that invincible, supernatural Restraining Force alone, who resides within each believer in Christ, whose voluntary removal from earth will allow that noxious cloud of mysterious iniquity to, for a time, seemingly take over planet earth.

That Restraining Force indwells each person who names the Holy Name of Jesus Christ–that is, each person who is born again from on high. Invoke His Name in your time of prayer. Ask that the Restrainer continue to hold back the fog of evil trying to swamp this generation, thus to choke any possibility of eternal life from every unregenerate human being.

Thankfully, that Restraining Force, the Holy Spirit, is alive and well, and is not willing for anyone to perish, but wants all to come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9).

–Terry