Pro and Con 879

Posted 3-13-02

Ergun Caner: Islam is not a Peaceful Religion http://www.cbn.com/700club/profiles/Ergun_Caner.asp

Ergun is the oldest son of a Muslim mwazien. The mwazien is similar to a preacher. In 1982 when he was 16 years old, he attended a revival service in Columbus, Ohio, at the invitation of a high school friend and accepted Christ. Ergun started attending church on Monday, accepted Christ on a Thursday -- and had his first piece of ham at a Youth Afterglow activity days later....

Ergun's Swedish mother met and married a Turkish man . They relocated to the U.S .where the younger brothers were born. Ergun says he was called to preach one year after salvation (he began college at 16), becoming a pastor at age 17 to a small country church in Manchester, Kentucky....

Islam Is Not A Peaceful Religion

As the son of a mwazein, Ergun had to learn the hadith (the sayings and traditions of Muhammed, the Prophet of Islam) in the Qur'an. In these teachings, Ergun says the central thesis of Islam does in fact have an essential tenet of militaristic conquest at its heart. The infidel, or unbeliever, must be converted or conquered. If the Muslim dies in such a struggle or declaration of war (jihad), he is promised immediate translation into the highest level of paradise. Therefore, when pressed most Muslims would say that Mohamed Ata is in heaven according to the Qur'anic teaching....

A Muslim is a Muslim by birth, but many are illiterate. Therefore they must take the word of the imam, equivalent to a pastor, as truth. They cannot question the validity of what the imam says....

Incredible Opportunity

But in the midst of this turmoil, Ergun says this is the most incredible opportunity to witness to Muslims. They are beginning to understand their religion. Many do not want to be part of the violence and are coming to Christ. The difference between reaching them and not reaching them depends on the teaching of grace.

"The single most important thing to do is teach on grace," he says. To Muslims, the intimacy of God is so new. Teach them that they don't have to live in fear of the "scales of Allah," which are seen as actual scales (2 Surah 4). For the Muslims who fear the scales that measure their eternal damnation if weighted heavier for evil than good, this is the only true eternal security they have.

Christians should also know that Allah and God are not the same. "No serious or intellectual Muslim would say that Allah has a Son, that He is a Triune, nor that He is personal," Ergun says. Allah is Creator and Judge. Christ's attributes are so totally different. He is loving, kind, gracious, and forgiving. As a Christian, Ergun is offended when he hears people say that God and Allah are the same. Many think getting to God is like getting to Chicago. You can get there by plane, train or auto. It doesn't matter what path you take, as long as you get there. Ergun calls this the "Oprahization" of American culture.

On October 19, 2001, Ergun spoke before the UN at the Subcommittee on Cultural Affairs. As an expert on Islam and one who speaks Arabic, he is being invited to participate in even more high-level projects on this area. There are only 20 former Muslims who are now preachers in America; there are only eight (and Ergun is one of them) who are professors of theology.

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Re: NOTES FOR "ANTIMISSIONARIES"
Looks like you have an "anti" trying to put down your grammer in order to "elevate" himself.

Here are a few notes; they are scattered and have no "direction" but you might be able to pick out a few pearls:...

The Gospel was preached to Abraham, Moses and Job proves that there was never any segmented aspects to God's grace. The following is proof that the OT saints and prophets knew of and believed in Yeshua - Jesus and by such faith that Jesus would come and do the promises of the Gospel, they got into heaven: Galatians 3:8 "And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the GOSPEL unto Abraham,,,"; Job 19:25 "For I know that my redeemer (Yeshua - Jesus, knowing that He would walk the earth in the latter days proves the Job believed in His resurrection, which had not happened yet for Job; thus Job must have known the Gospel!) liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:"; Hebrews 4:2-4, "For unto us was the GOSPEL preached, AS WELL AS UNTO THEM:,,," (The Hebrews in Sinai received the GOSPEL, AS WELL AS THE LAW AND OBSERVED BOTH; WE SHOULD TOO, their future belief, as our past belief, was based on faith in the atoning blood of the Messiah was sufficient for OT Hebrews to get into heaven, such as Moishe & Eliyahu as were seen on in a cloud from heaven (Shekinah Glory) on the mount of transfiguration - WOA!! imagine that Moses - who in flesh was barred from entering the Holy Land - made it into the Holy Land - HEAVEN - , PRIOR to the crucifixion). Their getting into heaven is possible because of: Hebrews 4:3 "For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although THE WORKS WERE FINISHED FROM THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD.". Jesus said: Matthew 9:13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come TO CALL THE RIGHTEOUS, but sinners to repentance.".

How did one get RIGHTEOUS PRIOR to the crucifixion? Answer: Same way we do now by believing and living the Gospel: Galatians 3:8 "And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before THE GOSPEL unto Abraham,", Hebrews 4:2 For unto us was THE GOSPEL preached, as well as unto them ("them" are Moses and the Hebrews at Sinai):". God is God of the living; and to be alive after having once died REQUIRES one to be in heaven with God: Matthew 22:31-33 "But as concerning the resurrection of the dead, have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living. And when the multitude heard this, they were astonished at his doctrine.". Again we ask who else might be in Shemayim, prior to the resurrection of Yeshua HaMashiach (Jesus The Christ, Jesus The Messiah or Anointed One) Consider: Matthew 23:13 "But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the KINGDOM OF HEAVEN against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, and ye hinder THEM THAT ARE ENTERING to go in." - THUS PROOF THAT OT Jews were entering heaven, but being hampered by the San Hedrin & Matthew 9:13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call THE RIGHTEOUS, but sinners to repentance."...

HOW DID ONE GET RIGHTEOUS PRIOR TO THE CRUCIFIXION? - SAME WAY WE DO TODAY THEY BELIEVED IN THE GOSPELS AND JESUS AND ENTERED HEAVEN...

The Talmud reports that the Hebrews had warnings of moral disintegration and impending catastrophe for 40 years (the time period signifying a Biblical generation and time period of testing by God) prior to the dispersion of the people Israel. In the 40 years from 30 AD.(the year of Yeshuas crucifixion) to 70 AD.:

a) The Supreme Court (Beth Din or Sanhedrin) was banished from meeting in the "Chamber of Hewn Stone" erected in the Temple enclosure. Then, the court sat in a trading station (bazaar). They "wandered to ten places of banishment" and ended up in Tiberias { Shabbath 15a, and Rosh Hashannah 31a, b,},
b) The Lot for "the L-rd's goat" never came up in the right hand of the Cohen Gadol on Yom Kippur, as it had during the 40 years of Simon the righteous (circa 300 BC). Between Shm'on and the final 40 years of the 2nd Temple, the lot came up in either hand, intermittently. { Yoma 39a, p.184, 39b, p. 186}
c) The crimson colored cloth thread tied on the door of the Temple did not turn white to indicates God's forgiveness on Yom Kippur (thus irefutably validates Yeshua's blood atoning crucifiction) during the final 40 years of the Temple. { Yoma 39b, 67a, 68b}
d) The Westernmost light, from which from which the other lights of the golden candelabra (menorah) were lit, did not shine continuously. { Yoma 39a, p. 185}
e) The great doors of the Temple (hekal) would open by themselves. It normally took 2 minyans to open the heavy portals. The Talmudic rabbis considered that this predicted the Temples destruction in fulfillment of Zec 11:1: Open thy doors, O Lebanon (Lebanon meaning "white" thus referring to the Temple), so that the fire may devour your cedars (wealth). And in the subsequent centuries eretz Yisrael was made desolate. { Yoma 39b, and 39a,}

Also, If Yeshua was a "trickster" as depicted in Talmud several questions arise:

1. The character of a "trickster" is one of moral lowliness, a swindler, as it were. Drawing from our knowledge of human nature, would one whose life is dedicated to "getting away with lies, cheating & falsehoods" be willing to die such a horrible death for the sake of his craft? We can only think not, the very nature of a trickster is to "vacate the premises" as we say. Yeshua knew full well at Getsamane that the Beth Din & et. al. were coming for him. He did not flee; very uncharacteristic for an alleged trickster (Steinsaltz Edition of Talmud uses the word trickster),

2. How could a trickster interfere directly with a process (the changing to white of the scarlet thread) only of God.? To be sure bad men defiled the Temple & the Temple was Gods, but not first until God foretold it would happen (destruction of Temples, thus it carried the authority of God). How could the above mentioned things (and the references are correct) be of hasatan or evil; if that were so hasatan would divide against himself in pointing out the Masheach! And if Traditional / Rabbinical Judaism considered Yeshua dead by that time (when the above things happened), how could he have done these things?

If not a virgin, then what kind of sign was Adonai referring to in: Isaiah 7:14 " Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin (almah) shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel." Almah, there is no instance in scripture where "almah" designates anything other than a virgin; & scripture defines its own words thru previous usage. More than two centuries before Yeshua was born, the Jewish translators of the Septuagint employed the Greek word "parthenos" to translate the Hebrew "almah.". "Parthenos" unequivocally means "virgin." In fact a thorough review will reveal that an almah is a virgin dedicated or associated with the Temple. Thus the almah spoken of in Isaiah is special & Miryam is Elisabeths cousin, who is attached to the Levites & Cohenim of the Temple.

God's plan, clearly revealed and that a most basic concept in the Tanakh is that God is the Deliverer of his people; man cannot save himself, In the Tanakh, the Son of God, the Messiah, alone is the Savior (Ps 44:3, 7; Isa 43:11; 45:21; 60:16; Jer 14:8; Hos 13:4). The messiah had to come twice: Isiah 11:11: His birth attested to: WHERE: Micah 5:2, WHEN: Genesis 49:10- Before the scepter departed-it departed circa 7AD when Israel lost the right of capital punishment,if someone says the sceptre departed with the Babylonian diaspora (586 BC), then the messiah had to come before that; then ask the person to identify who that person represented by the word shiloh is. 2Esdras 7:28 HOW: Isiah 7:14, WHO: The Divine Son of & Savior by God: 2 Samuel 7:1 (while the authorative geneaological records were still intact in the Temple) Ps 72:4,12-14,17; Isa 42:6-7; 49:6,8-9,16-17; 59:20; 61:1-3; Zec 9:9; Mal 4:2; Lk 1:68-77; 4:18-19; Isaiah 9:5(6), Psalm 2:7, 9-12, Proverbs 30:4, Daniel 7:13 and Ezekiel 21:9-11, WHY: Ps 44:3, 7; Isa 43:11; 45:21; 53:10-12; 60:16; Jer 14:8; Hos 13:4. The masheach's Death: HOW: crucifiction- even before it was invented-Psalm 22:16, Isiah 53:5, 8-12, Zech 12:10. WHEN: Daniel 9:26, Mal 3:1 (Prior to destruction of 2nd Temple)

My reply

Thanks so much for all the interesting information. I'll have to keep it for reference.

> > imagine that Moses - who in flesh was barred from entering the Holy Land - made it into the Holy Land - HEAVEN-, PRIOR to the crucifixion).

Here's some food for thought. Luke 16:18-31 tells us about the rich man that died and went to hell. "And in hell (hades) he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom." Do you think "afar off" here means Heaven? It does in some other places. For instance, 2 Peter 1:9 says, "But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off (i.e., Heaven at the time of the Pre-Trib Rapture), and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins" (when he accepted Yeshua as his Saviour). Luke 16:26 says that "between us and you there is a great gulf fixed." It would be a huge gulf if it stretched from Earth to Heaven.

I thought Yeshua took those waiting in Paradise, a compartment in the Earth, to the heavenly Paradise on Resurrection Day, the Feast of Firstfruits, in 30 AD.

What about Eph 4:8-10? It says, "Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, HE LED CAPTIVITY CAPTIVE (who did he lead, men?), and gave gifts unto MEN. (Now that he ascended, what is it but that HE ALSO DESCENDED FIRST INTO THE LOWER PARTS OF THE EARTH? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)" Why did he descend into the lower parts of the Earth before he ascended?

Psa 68:18 says, "Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast LED CAPTIVITY CAPTIVE: thou hast received gifts for MEN; yea, for the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them."

Yeshua did go to Heaven and back on Resurrection Day. He couldn't be touched until he came back later in the day. John 20:17 says, "Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God."

May the Lord bless you with all good things. Shalom and agape

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Fwd: Israel, USA and September 11, 2001
Today in America on March 11, 2002 we are commemorating the tragic events of September 11, 2001 of 5 months ago. Not even Osama, in his wildest dreams and most diabolic hopes, had envisioned the horrific extent of destruction meted out in different parts of America, especially, of course, to the Twin Towers. G-d, in His sovereignty permitted this destruction and even in this, miraculously and mercifully limited the numbers of dead and casualties.

But has any one linked these events with the Jewish Scriptures? It has not been widely publicized that George Tenet precisely one week BEFORE September 11 recalled all CIA staff from the West Bank and Gaza and evacuated them from Israel? It was not because they expected a terrorist attack in America.

It was because the CIA expected an eruption of conflict in all of the PA territories and throughout Israel AFTER the US would have recognized Palestinian Statehood (by September 11). They did NOT expect the attack on the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon. When Powell, on September 11, 2001, was to make his scheduled (but aborted, thank G-d) announcement to the UN General Assembly that United States of America was giving full recognition of a Palestinian State WITHOUT a cease fire and WITHOUT a peace agreement (after 12 months of suicide attacks in Israel since September 2000!), Tenet and his CIA people believed that all hell-fire and pandemonium would explode in Israel. The time bomb they left ticking did not explode in Israel but in the United States! The consequential concussion even blasted the General Assembly session out of the United Nations until after two months later!

The State Department's determination and intention to proclaim USrecognition of Palestinian Statehood before the UN General Assembly at 10.00 a.m. on September 11, 2001 WAS PREVENTED FROM HAPPENING! That scandalous scheme was aborted by the events that occurred between 8.00 and 9.00 a.m. only a few blocks away at the World Trade Center. And life is America has forever been changed since that tragic date!

Can we learn anything from this? We must! Joel 3:1-3 reads "In those days and at that time, when I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem, I will gather all nations and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat. There I will enter into judgment against them concerning my inheritance, my people Israel, for they scattered my people among the nations and divided up my land."

G-d says that He will enter into judgment against them CONCERNING MY INHERITANCE, MY PEOPLE ISRAEL, FOR THEY HAVE SCATTERED MY PEOPLE AMONG THE NATIONS AND HAVE DIVIDED UP MY LAND!" "DIVIDING UP GOD'S LAND" is not in God's will for Israel. It behooves every nation, especially after September 11, 2001, to think very, very carefully before they decide to parcel out land that rightfully and biblically belongs to God's Inheritance, the People of Israel.

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hope you don't mind me saying but, the rapture is not biblical. have you missed text that tell us that every eye will see the second coming?

My reply

Sorry to take so long to answer.

The Rapture is not the Second Coming. In the Rapture, Jesus will come in the air. His Bride will rise up to meet him in the clouds. 1Th 4:16,17 says, "the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them IN THE CLOUDS, TO MEET THE LORD IN THE AIR: and so shall we ever be with the Lord."

Some people will see the Rapture take place, but not all. Psa. 40:1-3 says, "I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined (bent down) unto me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of an horrible pit (out of the Earth, as Jeremiah was brought up out of the miry pit), out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock (the heavenly planet), and established my goings. And he hath put a new song (sung after the Rapture, Rev. 5:9) in my mouth, even praise unto our God: MANY SHALL SEE IT, AND FEAR, AND SHALL TRUST IN THE LORD."

The 1st Rapture will take place before the Tribulation. In Rev. 3:10-12, Jesus said, "Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from (ek, out of, as in Rev. 5:9) the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth. Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown. Him that OVERCOMETH will I make a PILLAR in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

Why does it mention overcomers being a pillar in the temple? There were two pillars in front of the temple. They may represent the two Raptures, one before the Tribulation, the other just before the wrath of God hits Earth. 1Ki 7:21 says, "he set up the pillars in the porch of the temple: and he set up the right pillar, and called the name thereof Jachin (meaning he that strengthens and makes steadfast): and he set up the left pillar, and called the name thereof Boaz (in strength).

1Ti 3:15 says, "But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is THE CHURCH of the living God, THE PILLAR and ground of the truth."

At the Second Coming, Jesus' feet will touch the Mt. of Olives. It will split. Zech. 14:4 says, "his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south." Agape

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From: Rich Pope. Re: Rapture
Here is an article written by Dr. James Trimm, a Nazarene Jew. I wish to make the distinction that Nazarene Jews are not Christians, but they do include the NT in their faith.

http://www.nazarene.net/_halacha/pretrib.htm

My reply

If I remember right, Dr. James Trimm is a friend of Dr. Tabor, who is translating both the Tanakh and the B'rit Hadashah for the Original Bible Project. Both have accepted Y'shua as their Messiah and Saviour. Neither believe in a Pre-Trib Rapture.

When discussing the Rapture with Dr. Tabor, I tried to figure out how he believed. I finally asked if he believed like the Nazarenes. He replied that it was pretty close. As far as I could tell then, Nazarene Judaism kept all the Torah keeping, as Moshe gave the Law to the Israelites in the wilderness, and added faith in Y'shua HaMaschiach. Only today, when I looked up the Nazarene's Statement of Faith, did I learn that they know they are saved by grace and not by keeping Torah. They keep Torah, but not because they think they can be saved by doing so. Praise the Lord.

I don't know if they apply the term Messianic Jews to themselves or not, but to me, they are Messianic Jews. They are saved, and if there is a Pre-Trib Rapture, they could be caught up with the Bride of Yeshua before the 70th week of Dan. 9:27 begins. If not then, they would probably be among the 144,000 Israelites that will be caught up just before the wrath of God falls on unbelievers left on Earth.

The following is the main part of the Nazarene Statement of Faith on their website:

I. YHWH

We believe that YHWH is one (ECHAD).

We believe that YHWH reveals Himself in many ways, characteristics and sefirot, including those of Father, Word (Memra), and the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit).

II. BIBLE

We believe that the Bible, which includes both the Tanakh [Old Testament] and the "New Testament" is the divinely inspired, infallible Word of ELOHIM in its original texts and manuscripts.

III. MESSIAH

We believe that Y'shua (Yahushua) HaMashiach has come and with great joy we anticipate his return, and even though he may delay, nevertheless we think about his return every day.

We believe he was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life in accordance with the Torah, performed miracles, was crucified for the atonement of his people in accordance with the Scriptures, was bodily resurrected on the third day. ascended to heaven and currently sits at the right hand of YHWH. He will return at the end of this age to usher in the Kingdom of ELOHIM on earth and will rule the world from Jerusalem with his people Israel for one thousand years.

IV. SALVATION

We believe that through the death of Messiah, because of his blood covenant with us, we receive salvation by way of inheritance. This salvation comes by faith through grace alone and is not earned by Torah observance.

V. TORAH

The Torah of Truth the Almighty gave to His people, Israel, through Moshe. He will not exchange it nor discard it for another until heaven and earth pass away. We believe that Torah observance is mans moral obligation and expression of love to YHWH.
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I agree with this and hope to see them both in Heaven after the Pre-Trib Rapture. If you would like to correspond with Dr. Trimm, his e-mail address is jstrimm@nazarene.net.

I can tell you exactly why I believe in the Pre-Trib Rapture and where I think Dr. Trimm was led astray in his article, but that's sort of getting the cart before the horse. You need to accept your Messiah before you would even have a chance to be caught up to Heaven in the Pre-Trib Rapture.

The Rapture was a mystery not fully revealed in the Tanakh. The mystery was revealed more fully in the B'rit Hadashah. Since you don't yet believe that the B'rit Hadashah is Scripture, I will only give you a reference in the Tanakh that pre-shadowed the Rapture.

Isa. 57:1-3 (Stone) says, "The righteous one perishes (abad, escapes, vanishes, i.e., at the Pre-Trib Rapture), and no man takes it to heart; men of kindness are gathered in (acaph, gathered, removed, evacuated, withdrawn, taken up) with no one understanding that because of the impending evil (the 70th week of Daniel 9:27) THE RIGHTEOUS ONE WAS GATHERED IN (acaph, taken up, i.e., before the impending evil comes). He will come (to Heaven) in peace; they will rest on their resting places -- he who walks in his integrity."

Actually, I believe there will be two Raptures, two trumpets of God calling saints to Heaven at the Pre-Trib and Pre-Wrath Raptures. Things happened to Israel in the past as examples of what will happen at the end of this age (I Cor. 10:10,11). In the Tanakh type, Nu. 10:1-4 (Stone) says, "HASHEM (YHVH) spoke to Moses, saying, "Make for yourself TWO SILVER TRUMPETS -- make them hammered out, and they shall be yours for the summoning of the assembly and to cause the camps to journey. When they sound a long blast with them (both), the entire assembly shall assemble to you, to the entrance of the Tent of Meeting (i.e., later, at the Pre-Wrath Rapture). If they sound a long blast with ONE (i.e., at the Pre-Trib Rapture), the leaders (i.e., 24 elders of Rev. 4:4, the 12 patriarchs and the 12 apostles of Israel) shall assemble to you, the heads of Israel's thousands."

Let me know when you are ready for more information on the Pre-Trib Rapture. One thing you might want to know now is that the Rapture was understood long before Darby and Margaret macDonald's time.

In his approx. 1500 word sermon, "On the Last Times, the Antichrist, and the End of the World," Pseudo-Ephraem (c. 374-627 AD) said, "All the saints and elect of God are gathered together before the tribulation, which is to come, and are taken to the Lord, in order that they may not see at any time the confusion which overwhelms the world because of our sins." (Alexander, Paul J. "The Byzantine Apocalyptic Tradition [Berkeley: Univ. of CA Press, 1985] p. 210).

"Why therefore do we not reject every care of earthly actions and PREPARE OURSELVES FOR THE MEETING OF THE LORD CHRIST, SO THAT HE MAY DRAW US FROM THE CONFUSION, WHICH OVERWHELMS ALL THE WORLD? Believe you me, dearest brother, because the coming (advent) of the Lord is nigh, believe you me, because the end of the world is at hand, believe me, because it is the very last time. Or do you not believe unless you see with your eyes? See to it that this sentence be not fulfilled among you of the prophet who declares: 'Woe to those who desire to see the day of the Lord?' FOR ALL THE SAINTS AND ELECT OF GOD ARE GATHERED, PRIOR TO THE TRIBULATION THAT IS TO COME, AND ARE TAKEN TO THE LORD LEST THEY SEE THE CONFUSION THAT IS TO OVERWHELM THE WORLD BECAUSE OF OUR SINS."

"And there will be a great tribulation, as there has not been since people began to be on earth...and no one is able to sell or buy of the grain of the harvest, unless he is the one who has the serpentine sign sign on the forehead or the hand. And when the three and a half years have been completed, the time of the Antichrist, through which he will have seduced the world, after the resurrection of the two prophets, in the hour which the world does not know and on the day which the enemy or the son of perdition does not know, will come the sign of the Son of Man, and coming forward the Lord shall appear with great power and much majesty, with the sign of salvation going before him, and also even with all the powers of the heavens with the whole chorus of the saints". Shalom and agape

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Re: Warning to all Catholics?
I just read pro/con 878 and had a frightening thought; what is the ratio of Catholics to Protestants in the world?

Forgive my ignorance, but aren't Catholics taught they are not able to confess their sins directly to God or Christ, but have to confess them to a priest? If this is true, the entire Catholic church could be the foolish Laodicean virgins, because they have never confessed their sins to God directly!!! This could have been Satan's ultimate plan for deceiving "the church" (referring now to the Catholic Church) and making them have to go through the Tribulation!!!

Could this be so?? If so, it is terrible!!! And set many of "the elect" up to be deceived by the corrupt Catholic Church during the Tribulation!!! Agape

My reply

Catholics do confess sins to a priest. How serious an error this will turn out to be, I don't know. Christ is the judge, not me. I John 1:9 says, "If we confess our sins, he (God) is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." I Tim. 2:5 says, "there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus." He is our High Priest. As for me, I'm praying to the Father in the name of the Son, Jesus. Agape

My reply to a post on 5 Doves site

Re: Gleason Parker, "Paul's "Rapture"--A type of us?"

> > In II Cor 12:1-4, we read about Paul's experience which may be a type of the rapture for us.... > > I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell; God knoweth) such an one caught up to the third heaven. And I knew such a man (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth) how that he was caught up to paradise."

Spiritualizing Scripture has the inherent danger that we will let our imaginations run too far with our material. If it mean what we think it does, then it must be upheld by other scriptures.

What I can see in II Cor. 12:1-7 applies to the Rapture in a more literal way. It gives us the DESTINATION of the saints who are caught up in I Thess. 4:16,17. It says, "the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a SHOUT, and with the VOICE of the archangel, and with the TRUMP of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be CAUGHT UP (HARPAZO, plucked, pulled, taken, or caught up; by force) together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air."

Rev. 1:10 and 4:1 show us that Christ's "GREAT VOICE, AS OF A TRUMPET" will SHOUT "COME UP HITHER." Rev. 11:12 shows us what will happen when we hear that "GREAT VOICE from heaven." When Christ shouted "COME UP HITHER" unto Moses and Elijah, "they ASCENDED UP TO HEAVEN IN A CLOUD; and their enemies beheld them."

In II Cor. 12:2-4, Paul was also "CAUGHT UP " (HARPAZO) to Heaven, but it adds that it is "THE THIRD HEAVEN" and that "he was CAUGHT UP (HARPAZO), into PARADISE (paradeisos, an Eden, i.e., the heavenly one).

Since the other things are literal, I think "THE THIRD HEAVEN" is literal too. Where is the literal THIRD HEAVEN located? Count them, (1) Mars, (2) Jupiter and (3) SATURN, the THIRD HEAVEN."

Josephus was a Pharisee priest. He said that the candlestick represented the planets, including the Sun. Since the western lamp was to always be kept burning, it represented the Sun. The other lamps were lit at night, as the planets can be seen in the sky at night. There was the (1) Sun, (2) Mercury, (3) Venus, (4) Earth, (5) Mars, (6) Jupiter and (7) Saturn.

Now think of this planetary lineup as being vertical. The Sun, Mercury and Venus would be below Earth. Mars, Jupiter and Saturn would be above Earth. If one started counting with the Earth, Saturn would be the third heaven. If one started counting with the Sun, Saturn would be the seventh heaven.

Exo 20:11 says, "For in six days the LORD made (asah, refashioned) heaven (i.e., Saturn, Heb. Shabbatai, meaning rest) and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh (shbiy'iy) day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath (shabbath) day , and hallowed it." It looks to me like the Shabbath day reminds us that our place of rest is on the seventh Shabbatai. Tying in, the Day of the Lord, the seventh millennium rest, is called the sabbatismos in Heb. 4:9.

Keep that vertical planetary lineup in mind. In Ezekiel's vision in chapter 1, the four flying things orbiting in concentric circles (wheels within wheels) are the terrestrial planets, Mercury, Venus, Earth ("one wheel upon the earth," v. 15) and Mars. In verse 22, we find that there is a "firmament" (expanse of space) over the heads of the terrestrial planets. Verse 26 says, "And above the firmament that was over their heads was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone: and upon the likeness of the throne was the likeness as the appearance of a man above upon it." This is Christ's throne. Sapphire means dear to the planet Saturn, from the Sanskrit Sani, Saturn, and priya, dear. From the equator upward and downward is the color amber, v. 27. Saturn is yellowish and brushed with amber. Agape

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