Thursday, January 27, 2011

Unrest in the Middle East: ripped from the pages of the bible (UPDATED)

UPDATE: Please go here for update as of 2-21-11, as events are moving so fast. Link also includes map.

There has been unrest, regime change, or heavy protesting taking place in Tunisia, Algeria, Egypt, Yemen, Sudan and Lebanon over the last several weeks. Arutz Sheva reports, "With no fewer than five major areas of unrest/revolutions/regime changes going on in the Arab world, Arab satellite television, one of the mainstays of information dissemination in the Middle East, has been playing a major role in communicating news – or attempting, if not to suppress it, then at least to spin it."

Part of that suppression is Egypt's decision to shut off internet today in the wake of intensifying protests against the government. The people have been protesting President Hosni Mubarek, Egypt's President for nearly thirty years. As this Dallas Morning News editorial aptly titled 'Why we should care about Egypt protests' states, "American foreign policy in the Middle East, for the past four decades, has relied heavily on keeping certain dictatorships firmly in power -- Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Jordan. We call most of them monarchies, but their rulers are not in power because of any kind of free and fair election. They survive because the U.S. government does everything in its power to keep them there. Despite all of our talk about democracy, it would be America's (and Israel's ) worst nightmare if the government of Hosni Mubarak were to suddenly fall from power and be replaced by a democratically elected government that truly represents the will of the Egyptian masses. Because the Egyptian masses are not predictable and could easily be swayed by the populist promises of Islamist parties such as the Muslim Brotherhood. Every single Middle Eastern country with a democratic form of government has experimented with the extremes -- even Israel. Eventually, voters learn to moderate their leadership, but it takes time. And when you're talking about the Middle East's most populist country with an extremely high poverty rate, it really could take Egyptians a long time to figure out what, exactly they want. In the meantime, Egypt risks lurching back and forth, and an elected Islamist government could well decide, for example, that it's No. 1 priority is to support its Hamas brothers in neighboring Gaza."

Unrest and collapsing peace talks in the Middle East are constant and troublesome, but revolutions and prophetic alliances being cemented before our eyes is quite another thing entirely. Tunisia, Algeria, and Sudan are northern tier African countries prophesied to ally with Turkey-Iran-Russia in the Gog-Magog battle Ezekiel describes in chapters 38 and 39. Joel C. Rosenberg discussed a growing concern of the tightening ties between Russia, Iran and Sudan, here.

As we know, last week Lebanon's government fell because of a governmental coup by the terrorist organization Hezbollah. Hezbollah is backed by Iran and Syria. Tunisia and Algeria are protesting economic hardships and the obvious graft and corruption of wealthy officials in the face of devastating poverty. Additionally, the Israel peace talks are widely acknowledged to have failed this month.

In a short article titled "Winds of Arab revolt reach Yemen" it was stated "Tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets of the Yemeni capital yesterday to demand the end of the three-decade rule of its President in the latest sign of rebellion sweeping the Arab world."

It seems that unrest, even revolutions, are catching. Yet Jesus told us in Matthew 24:7 that in the Tribulation nation would rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. The word for nation in this context is "ethnos", or 'race'. This means that civil war will be a norm in addition to country vs. country kinds of war. It is interesting to note that Yemen and Egypt's leaders have been in power for about thirty years, Tunisia's President has been in power for for 22, Yemen's president for 21 years.

There is a reason all these middle eastern nations are in the news just now. They are prominent in the last days and in the Tribulation. They are biblically prophesied to have a role in God's continuing plan of redemption and judgment. That they are nearly at the point of fulfilling that role now speaks to how close we are to the rapture.

19 comments:

  1. What may surprise many 'christians' in the west will be to find out that they are counted as the WORST of hypocrites. They espouse freedom, and human rights and other virtuous ideals yet they sit by, decade after decade, denying the same for their fellow man-even if of another faith. Now they bite their nails worried about an islamic takeover of the current wave of rebellions, when if they truly believed in the values they espouse they would have pressured their own govt's to support a better life for these people from 50 years ago! The devil has got them alllllll afear and atremble and his media tool only fuels the blindness.

    Oh and by the way, there were NOT tens of thousands of demonstrators in Sana'a. There were around 1,600-a minimal number. Plus they are the same groups that demonstrate routinely and they remain near the university and not city wide- So far there is not a popular uprising-not to say there won't be...I know I live in Sana'a.

    Remember in these troubled times that distortions are all over. The truth will come that most forms of 'facts and truth' whether from the left, the right, the church, the mosque, the temple, the woods, the bank, the school and university, and most certainly the media are falsehoods and spins twisted to the agenda we are witnessing today. Stay true to what you know is in faith and goodness_EVEN if the most authoritative figures of religion, material faith, and humanly endeavors insist that what you KNOW is right is not!

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  2. Fear mongering if I have ever seen it. How can you expect to be taken seriously if you cover UFOs, Religion, Apocalyptica erotica, and "Human Rights"? Objectivity. Learn it.

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  3. Anonymous, I hope you ARE afraid. Obviously, gentle conviction from the Holy Spirit hasn't prompted you to repent. Obviously, the works and miracles of Jesus have not convicted you to repent. Obviously, the love of God throughout the ages has not prompted you to repent. The fact is, what's coming is very scary.

    It is not my job to worry about being "taken seriously" because in order to do that, I'd have to water down the message of Jesus Christ, and in that case, HE would not take ME seriously. My job is to present the truth, and pray the seed lodges in your heart, to grow and flourish so that you can know the love of Jesus in heaven one day.

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  4. I will repent when I see it fit. Your condescension and two-faced beliefs are the very reason that Christianity is losing its chokehold on the world. People are evolving, growing, learning; all the while religion seeks to keep society from advancing. Cast down your outdated and outmoded beliefs. Christians used to preach that blasphemers would be struck down by the very hand of God. Guess what? We have more people than ever questioning his existence and the vast majority of them go on to live very healthy lives. Do not force your beliefs upon me. Do not draw me into your closed, bigoted mind.

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  5. Hello Anonymous,

    Thanks for visiting the blog, and reading, and taking the time to comment. I thank the Holy Spirit for that, He prompted you to come here.

    Anonymous, condescension? I was not the one to say "I will repent when I see fit." But in His grace He does allow you to repent when you see fit, up until you die, then your fate is sealed. Your choices are set for eternity.

    Blasphemers ARE struck down. Hebrews 10:29 says: "How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?"

    You are right. Many people who reject God and live in their sins remain on earth for their entire life, seemingly not punished. But the key word you used was "healthy lives." They die. And then they are in hell. And then at the end of the age, Jesus will resurrect them to face His judgment.

    "outmoded"? When did He become "outmoded? What was the expiration date, exactly? If we are going by numerical majorities, that is, on how many people here and there question His existence or not.

    But numerical majority has no bearing on His existence, nor on their sin and coming judgment. He hates sin, but loves you. He still wants you to come to Him and be blessed with eternal life with Him.

    I'm forcing my beliefs on you? Not really. I state my beliefs and you entered this blog of your own volition. I will always state my beliefs here.

    Yes, I'm bigoted against sin. I'm bigoted against blasphemy. I'm bigoted against satan. However, I love you.

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  6. Elizabeth - your words of grace and love are an inspiration... thank you

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  7. Well stated Elizabeth.. What is happening in the world now is playing out like a script in a play written by the the infallible word of God. It is an excited and blessed time to be a Christian. Knowing Him and understanding His Word causes those to believe to anticipate seeing Him face to face.. Still there is a urgency to share out faith with unbelievers as His word commands. The time is indeed short and I don't want anyone to be left behind to face the Great Tribulation..

    To my brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus:
    Share the Gospel with someone today!!

    Come quickly Lord Jesus!!

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  8. @Pearlygates:

    The fact that you people seem to want the end of days is frankly astonishing (Disclaimer - I am an atheist, and I'm not going to repent without some damned good evidence. And no, you're not going to show me anything I haven't seen, because it took 9 years of soul-searching for me to come to my ultimate conclusion. I've put more thought into my beliefs than most people ever will). You claim to want to spread the message of Jesus Christ, to distribute his love and caring to everyone. Okay, fine, I can dig that. I guess. I mean, it's a bit silly, because relentless proselytizing does more harm than good, but whatever.

    But here's the kicker. You're also waiting with baited breath for the end of days, cheering on the impending demise of everyone who didn't believe (and according to your beliefs, you'll go to heaven, they'll burn forever.), leaving you with significantly less time to convert them than had the "Rapture" never occurred.

    But wait! It gets better. You believe in an eternal afterlife. Disregarding how few people actually understand the truly massive scope of eternity, and the terrible implications thereof, this means that your "life" will be infinitesimally short in comparison to your afterlife. Therefore, there is absolutely no logical reason to look forward to the potential apocalypse, as it will be utterly insignificant in the grand scheme of things. You think you'll live forever, and while I disagree, that's your prerogative. But why do you want other people to spend less time in this life and more in hell? That's hardly the act of a loving Christian, now is it?

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  9. You are mistaken when you detect in our joy at imminently being with our Savior, attendant joy at your demise. It is not so. Separate those two: the truth from your mistaken perception, and you have it. We long to be with our savior, that is true. But we dont' gloat over your demise, we mourn you. We are sad and cry real tears over the lost. Remember, the lost doesn't include only people like you whom we will never meet, but the lost also includes our mothers, our sisters, our husbands, our wives. They are colleagues, sons, friends. We are not heartless. We don't 'wish for them to go to hell.' We really do mourn you and wish that all of you would choose heaven. That hell is what you CHOOSE for yourselves makes it worse.

    Another mistake you are making is thinking that "the apocalypse... will be utterly insignificant in the grand scheme of things". You will discover differently, to your eternal horror.

    You are correct in that life is short in terms of afterlife. But you are again mistaken when you say we do not understand that. The bible reminds us over and over, James 4:14 is one such verse that reveals the massive scope of eternity in the face of earthly life: "Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away."

    We do not want people to spend less time in this life and more in hell. However the timing of the end of the world is God's alone. He cuts it off at a certain point. That we are that generation seeing the cutoff is simply the fact of our lives. He gave us information as to what to look for when it nears. There are many reasons for this, but one is that we will witness with urgency mindful of your fate. It is so we could say: Jesus loves you, in all your fallenness, depravity, and sins. He loves you. He wants you to come to Him and ask Him to forgive those sins and He will open His arms to you. You can think all you want that I and those like me are heartless, loveless harridans hoping for your demise, that's your prerogative. But never think for a moment that Jesus doesn't love you. He does. He is the ultimate Loving Christian.

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  10. Jesus was a man who lived 2,000 years ago. He has never met me. He can not love me. He can certainly claim to love me. Hell, if you go 2,000 years into the future you can claim anything will happen. The blatant disregard for logic in rationalizing your faith is what baffles me. How can someone human transcend the corporeality of their existence? I can claim to love someone 2,000 years from now, but ultimately I will never meet them. I will not understand their actions, motivations, or circumstances. I will not be able to empathize or sympathize. I will be dead, gone, perhaps in eternal life, but I firmly believe otherwise. Love is not something inherent. Love is something found. You can love someone who is dead. But you cannot love someone whom you have never met. You can love the idea of loving them, but the quintessential truth is that you are married to the ideal of love, not the actuality of love. You are married to the idea that a man with great political influence over oppressed and impoverished gentiles actually cares about you.

    Do not forget that Jesus Himself did not author the Bible. Fallible men whose comprehension and understanding of current events was filtered through their own biases and preconceptions wrote the Bible. Much of the Old Testament was written thousands of years after the events contained therein had actually occurred. Oral tradition is hardly a concrete medium through which to convey information. Embellishment, misremembering, misinformation, and flat out forgetfulness seep into the stories. For all we know, Adam actually seduced Eve. Men may have changed the story to oppress women.

    The fact is Christians (and many other religious sects) base their entire lives around the idea of something; not the actual existence of it. That takes a level of blind faith I simply cannot rationalize and cannot partake of. My mind is fixed on logic, rationalized decisions, and observation of current events. I do not bet my life on the notions of men who lived in a time when the majority of people believed that Earth was flat, nature was built on the four primary elements, and the land west of Europe was China.

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  11. "You will discover differently, to your eternal horror."

    Totally missed the point there, but whatever. You seem to have hit on it a bit on the next paragraph, so kudos there. Kinda skirts what I was hitting at, but the bible is old, so credit for trying to find a verse that fit.

    "Jesus loves you, in all your fallenness, depravity, and sins"

    I'd like to ask how you know anything about the latter two. That I'm "fallen", I suppose, should be a given - I'm a self-proclaimed agnostic atheist. But that I'm a depraved sinner? Really?

    Here's a short list of things that I do and have done with my life.

    I'm an Eagle Scout. I give money to charity and volunteer when I have weekends off (rare, sadly). I spend a lot of my time following and supporting humanitarian causes, both religious and not (though I prefer those without religious motivations, if it doesn't overly affect their work, I support them). \

    Let's see what else I can bring up as an example of what a depraved person I am. I love animals and have several of my own.

    I've never intentionally harmed another person, and on the one or two occasions that someone attempts to fight me, I refused. Got my ass kicked for it, but I didn't fight back. Jesus said something about that, no? Turn the other cheek, I think it was?

    I don't think I've ever unintentionally harmed another human being, but I've been alive a long time, I'm sure it's happened once or twice, emotionally or otherwise.

    Damn but I'm a sick, perverted freak. Just because I don't believe doesn't mean I want people to look back on my life and spit. And hell, if I'm wrong, and this is the kind of life that gets me sent to hell? I'll gladly burn because a hypocrite is not a god I want to worship.

    "He loves you. He wants you to come to Him and ask Him to forgive those sins and He will open His arms to you"

    Then why, in 9 years of soul searching and questioning, did he never talk back? Never do /anything/ to indicate that it was more than a fairy tale for adults? Seems like that would have been the perfect time to extend his love.

    Oh, and here's the final little kicker that I don't usually throw around, regarding my lack of belief - I'm autistic. For those of you that aren't well versed in this disorder (and I wouldn't blame you. Even those who are experts really don't know that much), this means that I have extreme difficulty grasping that which is abstract, that which is not concrete, that which /cannot be proven/. Like, you know, Religion.

    You believe that god made each and every one of us. That it (or he, if you want to be misogynistic. There's no data to suggest that it's a boy)knows everything.

    But the kicker to omniscience is that it encompasses knowing /all/, past, present, and most importantly, future, meaning that the god you believe so fervently in made me this way, knowing full well that I would stop believing in it at around age 13, because of the way that he made me.

    Which means that your all knowing, all powerful, all loving god, damned me and millions of others to an eternity of hellfire without ever giving us a say in the matter. And because it's a god we're talking about, we can say, I guess, that it knows exactly what would be required to convert each and every one of us. And doesn't. Which means that it, for whatever reason, /wants/ us to burn, because no other explanation aside from nonexistence or apathy make sense.

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  12. You could be Mother Theresa but you're still depraved. The laundry list of nice things you do is very nice, and important, but not holy. Only God is holy and all the nice things we do, even if we did them forever, would never come close enough to His standard of holiness. God looks at you not comparing how nice you are from the next guy, but to how Holy HE is. And we all have sinned and therefore we all fall short. (Romans 3:23)

    So you blame God for quitting your belief at age 13??? You blame Autism on your failure to grasp religion? Blame game gets you nowhere. YOU stopped believing. Your choice. You have a condition. So what?? And Jesus isn't asking you to grasp religion. He asked you to understand your position in depravity compared to His position of Perfect Holiness. And then repent. You seem to have a very good grasp on your 'goodness'. Now try rasping the opposite. Not too hard.

    God didn't damn you to hell. YOU did. You can get escape that fate: just admit you're a sinner. Although it is evident you feel pretty secure in the goodness of your deeds. But if you do admit that all your good deeds will count as nothing on the Day of Judgment and appeal to your Creator for forgiveness, you will enjoy eternal joy with your Savior.

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  13. Anonymous, of 1:00 PM --

    You are trying to see things through your own eyes. Jesus knows you because He created you. He knows every person on this planet and all the prople who ever lived, personally. Just because you don't understand that or can't envision His love lasting 2000 years doesn't mean it isn't real. I used to be like you, thinking Christians were irrational.

    But once I repented and the Holy Spirit came in me and opened my eyes, I see with clarity that far from the bible being "oral tradition" it has more literary/contextual/historical integrity than any other book on the planet. it is 99.9% pure. Not bad for an old book, eh?

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  14. Now we request you, brethren, with regard to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, that you not be quickly shaken from your composure or be disturbed either by a spirit or a message or a letter as if from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come. Let no one in any way deceive you, for {it will not come} unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself above every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, displaying himself as being God.
    2 Thess 2

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  15. I was an athetist too. Thn God did speak to me! Most people do not hear God because the won't be quiet and listen, they are much too busy being rational!
    It is still a matter of faith for me, I agree God does not make sense, nor the bible, nor so many things in life that we do not understand. But the old arguement holds true...you can not see the wind, but you know it is there! That is "faith" believing in what you cannot see. And that is what my heart tells me is true about God. When I start thinking and start wondering why the heck I believe in God, He "speaks"to me quietly and reminds me that He wants me to have a choice. He will not force His love on me, it is up to me if I believe.
    If you would be quiet and listen HE WILL speak to you. And He is so good and kind that HE will give you another chance when you see all the things (rapture, anti-christ, etc.) we ave been told will happen- happens! So though you will be sentenced to live through the tribultion for your current unbelief, you have been sent here so that you will know the things God has warned us about are true and you will be able to understand and HEAR the Lord after we are raptured. May God be with you during your coming trials, ad lead you to Him as you are so obviously crying out for Him to save you.

    I tell people I thought I was an athetist, but God knew I wasn't! He has forgiven me my arrogance and I will be with HIM soon! He sent so many people to tell me what I tell you...He would rather you be hot o cold than lukewarm. He has not lost faith in you, and you will be saved when the time is right between you and Him.

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  16. please don't tell me you've lost your sense

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  17. Lost my sense? Of what? Humor? No, I haven't lost that

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  18. The very people that do not belive in God 99.9% of them when facing death if able call on God to save them.

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  19. Today is the 20th of January, 2015. Years have gone by since this article was so articulately written and posted. I happened onto it while searching for scriptures that would fit with the latest CNN reports involving more terrorist attacks around the world. I became captivated by the blog and read comments regarding it. There is NOTHING that will cause a soul to repent and turn their life over to Messiah except prayer. My heart is breaking for 'Anonymous' as this is obviously a lost soul that Jesus speaks about over and over. And Elizabeth, bless you for reaching out. You and I know the TRUTH and are secure in knowing that our rescue is inevitable. I'm waiting with Holy expectancy for my God and King to bring me home, but in the mean time, my prayer is for the sinner, the infidel and the lost. Many blessings to you, Elizabeth. Anonymous, chose life......"Jesus said to her, 'I am the Resurrection and the Life. The one who believes in Me will life, even though they die.' " (John 11:25)

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