An Op-Ed piece in the Israeli National News (Arutz Sheva) newspaper today just tore me up. I've been reading over the years of the incremental chipping away at Israel's right to her holy and historic sites. Today there was an Opinion Editorial (Op-Ed) lamenting this sad fact.
Has Israel Lost the Temple Mount Race?
Op-ed:Olympic races don't mean a thing, but the race for the control the Temple Mount is one that we must win. By Giulio Meotti
"A Palestinian flag is now flying on the Temple Mount, the most holy site on earth, where the First and Second Temples stood and the Holy of Holies was. Piece after piece of Eretz Israel is becoming a symbol of Arab nationalistic achievements. Several months ago, the Palestinian Rehabilitation Committee raised the UNESCO flag next to the Palestinian flag in front of Hevron’s Tomb of the Patriarchs. A Palestinian flag on the Temple Mount not only makes the Jewish people psychologically weaker, it looks as though Islam won the race in climbing to the top of the most sacred mountain. It’s an implicit recognition of Muslim hegemony."
Then I read this about a young man:
Youth Arrested for Prostrating Self on Temple Mount
"A 21-year-old resident of the Judean Jewish community of Kiryat Arba was detained for questioning, Tuesday morning, after he prostrated himself on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The action violates guidelines for non-Muslim visitors to the holy site, who are not allowed to do anything that resembles praying."
There are rules that no one may stop walking on the Mount, or fold hands or whisper or bow. Once, a woman was arrested for putting her head on a bench. You cannot bring a bible. You cannot bring anything with Hebrew lettering on it, even a newspaper. If you break some of these rules you will be summarily arrested. Others, you will be detained and your item confiscated. Sad!! It will be so great when all believers are in the presence of Holy God and we can pray all we want.
The Lebanon Daily Star is usually pretty interesting. I read Arutz Sheva and the Jerusalem Post, the Jordan Times, and Turkey's Hurriyet News to get my dose of news from epicenter mainstream sources, and whatever the King of the dictator in power at the moment has allowed into print. The Lebanon Daily Star has an interesting feature: Photos of the Day. They offer a different perspective than the similar feature at the Boston Globe does. For example, here is one of yesterday's photos:
An Afghan man stands near the window of a tea house in downtown Kabul. AFP PHOTO/ Roberto SCHMIDT
Or this one from today
A riotpoliceman reacts after he was hit by a petrol bomb thrown by protesters during a nationwide general strike in Athens. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)
The Greek and Spain economic situation is terrible. People are dumpster diving in Spain in increasing numbers just to find some food so they can stay alive.
Spain Recoils, as Its Hungry Forage Trash Bins for a Next Meal
"On a recent evening, a hip-looking young woman was sorting through a stack of crates outside a fruit and vegetable store here in the working-class neighborhood of Vallecas as it shut down for the night. Getty Images The European Union (EU) flag, left, flies alongside the Spanish national flag. At first glance, she looked as if she might be a store employee. But no. The young woman was looking through the day’s trash for her next meal. Already, she had found a dozen aging potatoes she deemed edible and loaded them onto a luggage cart parked nearby. “When you don’t have enough money,” she said, declining to give her name, “this is what there is.”
It is a gripping, sobering, and heartbreaking article. This is so especially because the real hunger hasn't even started yet. (Revelation 6:6; Matthew 24:7)
Also in the Daily Star is this news article:
Tehran unveils drone capable of reaching Israel
"Iranian military leaders gave details Tuesday of a new long-range drone and test-fired four anti-ship missiles in a prelude to upcoming naval war games planned in an apparent response to U.S.-led warship drills in the Persian Gulf. The show of Iranian military readiness and its latest tool – a domestically made drone capable of reaching Israel and most of the Middle East..."
Hmmm. This bodes ill. Today Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promised an appropriate response to Iran Prime Minister Ahmadinejad's speech a the UN where as usual he promised to wipe Israel from the map.
Netanyahu promises fitting response
"Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu left hours after the end of Yom Kippur Wednesday night for New York to address the United Nations where he pledged to give a fitting response to Iran's desire to "sentence us to death." In an unusual letter to the Israeli public before leaving for the US, Netanyahu wrote that history showed that those who desired to wipe the Jewish people "off the map" failed, while the Jewish people persevered and overcame all obstacles. Netanyahu – referring to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's speech to the UN on Wednesday – said that while "we prayed to be inscribed in the Book of Life, a platform was given to a dictatorial regime in Iran that strives, at every opportunity, to sentence us to death."
Poetic words. History shows that Netanyahu is right. The bible as history book shows time and again that when God wants Israel to be an immovable rock, He makes Israel an immovable rock. (Zechariah 12:3).
Turkey used to be fairly secular. Over the past ten years or so it has turned into a Muslim state. Now, there are complaints that high school children are being forced to attend imam hatip schools. These are schools which focus not only on secular curriculum but teach conservative Islam theology. If you want to be an Imam you graduate from one of these schools. They call them Muslim preacher schools.
Students forced to enroll in religious schools in Istanbul
"Students living in Istanbul's European-side district of Sultangazi who failed to earn good enough marks to enter the advanced Anatolian High School system or a vocational school have been enrolled in the religious imam-hatip schools without their knowledge, daily Hürriyet reported. Nearly 3,000 students were prevented from enrolling the Anatolian and vocational schools following the entrance tests, and most of those were subsequently enrolled in religious imam-hatip schools against their wishes."
Parents are quoted as saying their child had checked off vocational school but the child wound up in the religious school instead, despite there being plenty of openings and the preference being having been made clear.
Meanwhile in Jordan there is concern that there is not enough Arabic content on the internet.
‘Gov’t to form council on Arabic web content’
"The government said on Wednesday that it will establish a consultative council to increase Arabic content on the Internet. The council will include representatives of the public sector, private content development companies, academia, publishers, lenders and investment funds, a source at the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology said. “Our objective is to help look into ways to increase Arabic content to serve Internet users not only in Jordan but across the Arab world,” the source told The Jordan Times."
People are nuts. The smallest thing will set them off. In NYC, two businessmen fight over a taxi. The scuffle began on the street with chest bumping and shoving, then one guy raced to the taxi with the other guy close on his heels, then the two shoved their way into the open passenger door, with one man briefly putting the other in a chokehold. One man entered the cab victorious and the other slammed the door very hard as the taxi prepared to speed away.
The newscaster said that though people argue over cabs all the time in the big city, you don't often see this:
I can't imagine how difficult it is living in proximity to many millions of people who are off their rockers in sin and haven't been saved. With sin rising the way it is a city would be the last place I would want to spend any time at all.
student took his own life at school. It shocked us all that a youth would end his life, (he died a day later in hospital) and in such a public and dramatic way, too. Now I read another story today of a youth killing himself in a public school. This one was in Oklahoma. And he was 13 years old.
Police: Student shoots self at Stillwater school
"STILLWATER, Okla. — A 13-year-old student shot and killed himself in a hallway at an Oklahoma junior high school before classes began Wednesday, police said, terrifying teenagers who feared a gunman was on the loose."
Oh, our precious babies!!
So the end will be soon but not yet. Maybe tonight. Maybe tomorrow. Maybe next week. Soon- for believers will be taken out of the way before the Tribulation begins. (Isaiah 26:20; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, Revelation 3:10). But not yet.
"And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet." (Matthew 24:6.)
Have you ever considered that one evidence of the Holy Spirit's work in regeneration is the very fact we look forward to the final ‘regeneration’ at the end of the age? (Matt. 19:28). "By His resurrection, our Lord Jesus Christ became the ‘firstborn among many brethren.’ In the new birth, we are born again into the family of God, and the new light of the world to come begins to irradiate our lives. We yet live in ‘this present evil world’ (Gal. 1:4), but we live the life of the world to come because it has already come in the indwelling presence of God’s Spirit, the Spirit of God’s new and proper Man, Jesus Christ. The Spirit’s indwelling, renewing presence imparts a new direction, even trajectory, to our lives." [more here]
Pastor Steve Lawson preached on the signs of the end of the age in a sermon called "Get Ready!" He said toward the end of his portion on the signs themselves,
"There will be forerunners who will announce His coming. And they are one of the signs that are mentioned throughout the entirety of this chapter. And Jesus says, 'When you see these signs being fulfilled, we are to recognize and know that He is near, right at the door. The picture here is of Christ, arising from His throne in heaven, and approaching a door that would lead from heaven to the earth...He has arisen from His throne and His hand is on the door, ready to open the door and burst upon the stage of human history. Jesus says 'when you see these signs increasing as leaves on a tree do suddenly appear on a tree in spring and grow and increasing fashion, when you see these signs growing in fullness, know that the judge is standing right at the door....Is it wrong to look at world events and try to estimate where we are in God's prophetic calendar? The answer is no. Or He would never have told us what are these signs to look for. It would be a total denial of what Jesus said to not have one hand on the bible looking into the scripture and the other eye looking around at the world to see what is going on."
So keep looking up, He is right at the door!
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