Friday, August 29, 2014

Hitler's Nightmare: Part 5 of 5

Dr. David R. ReaganPDFBy

The question posed was: "Could Nazi Germany happen here in America?"


Potential for Evil

We need to keep in mind that the potential for the evil of Hitler resides in all of us. The Bible states that "the heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick" (Jeremiah 17:9). Jesus affirmed this when He asserted that all evil — both thoughts and actions — come out of the heart (Matthew 15:19-20 and Mark 7:20-23). Over and over the Bible asserts that the nature of Man is evil and should never be trusted (Psalm 53:1-3, Psalm 118:8-9, and Romans 3:10-12).

This fundamental truth about the nature of Man was reflected in the most surprising quotation I ran across while doing research for this article. I found the quote in the writings of Charlie Chaplin's son, Charles Jr. He says that in 1940 while his father was filming his parody of Hitler, "The Great Dictator," he was "haunted" by the similar backgrounds of Hitler and himself. He explains:

Their desires were poles apart. One was to make millions weep, while the other was to set the whole world laughing. Dad could never think of Hitler without a shudder, half of horror, half of fascination. "Just think," he would say uneasily, "he's the madman. I'm the comic. But it could have been the other way around."

Charlie Chaplin

That profound insight is true of all of us. We are born with a fallen sin nature. We have to learn the difference between good and evil. That knowledge comes from God's Word, and we learn it either from our parents or from the Church, or both.


Wake up, America!

When God is ejected from society and the Church is either marginalized or suppressed, evil is let loose, and "God gives the society over to a depraved mind" (Romans 1:28). That's where we are in America today.

We are literally begging for the fate of ancient Judah when that nation turned against God and refused to repent, despite the infliction of many remedial judgments and the warnings of prophets. Some of the saddest words in the Bible, recorded in 2 Chronicles 36:15-16, describe what happened:

15) The LORD, the God of their fathers, sent word to them again and again by His messengers, because He had compassion on His people and on His dwelling place;
16) but they continually mocked the messengers of God, despised His words and scoffed at His prophets, until the wrath of the LORD arose against His people, until there was no remedy.


Getting Acquainted with Erwin Lutzer

Erwin Lutzer was born in 1941 in Canada and grew up on a farm near Regina, Saskatchewan. He earned a Bachelor of Theology degree from Winnipeg Bible College and then proceeded to Dallas, Texas to study at Dallas Theological Seminary where he earned a Master of Theology degree. Later he received a degree in philosophy from Loyola University in Chicago. While he was a student at Dallas Theological, he met his wife, Rebecca.

In 1980 he succeeded Warren Wiersbe as senior pastor of The Moody Church in Chicago and has served there in that capacity ever since. He is an award-winning author of more than twenty books, a celebrated international conference speaker, and the featured speaker on three radio programs: The Moody Church Hour, Songs in the Night, and Running to Win. These programs are available on the Moody Broadcasting Network, the Bible Broadcasting Network, Trans World Radio and many Christian radio stations around the world.

He and his wife, Rebecca, live in the Chicago area and are the parents of three married children. They have seven grandchildren.

Pastor Lutzer’s parents were born and raised in the Ukraine in a German-speaking community. When World War I broke out in 1914, the Russian government began persecuting all people of German heritage living within its borders. His mother’s parents fled to Siberia; his father’s family went to Afghanistan. Both families ultimately migrated to Canada, and that’s where his parents met – at church.

A few years ago I was invited to be a co-speaker with Pastor Lutzer at two conferences held in the state of Illinois. I looked forward to meeting him personally, and I decided to do some research about his background. In the process I discovered that his father was 106 years old, and his mom was 100! I mentioned this when I met him, and he said it was true at the time the article was written, but that his dad had since died.

He then began chuckling to himself. I asked what was so funny. He said he was thinking about something his father told him shortly before he died. "Son," he said, "your mom and I were talking the other night about how long we have lived, and in the process, it occurred to us that most of our dear friends in Christ died 30 or more years ago. And that’s when we realized that by now, they must have all come to the conclusion that when we died, we went to Hell!"

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Hitler's Nightmare: Part 4 of 5

Dr. David R. ReaganPDFBy

The question posed was: "Could Nazi Germany happen here in America?"


An Insightful Book

In Lutzer's book, "When A Nation forgets God," he begins by asserting that "Yes, Nazi Germany has some lessons to teach us." Following up on that observation, he writes:

I am aware, of course that parallels between Nazi Germany and the United States can easily be overdrawn, but this danger should not stop us from learning some hard lessons from that dark period when the Church struggled to find its identity and had to suffer for what it believed... those similarities are happening before our eyes...
Nazism did not arise in a vacuum. There were cultural streams that made it possible... Some of those streams — myths accepted by the masses — are in evidence in America today, and hence this book... there were circumstances and widely accepted ideas that enabled the population to become a part of an evil that was greater than that of any individual. The gas ovens were the end result of certain political and religious trends that made the horrors possible.

When a Nation Forgets God

Lutzer then illustrates his point with a quote from the writings of Viktor Frankl (1905-1997), the famous psychoanalyst who was a Holocaust survivor:

The gas chambers of Auschwitz were the ultimate consequence of the theory that man is nothing but the product of heredity and environment — or as the Nazis liked to say, "Of blood and soil."

Focusing once again on American society, Lutzer observes:

Today we face cultural pressures that are forcing us to combine Christ with other religions, or to combine Christ with a political or ideological agenda. The experience of the Church in Nazi Germany reminds us that Christ must always stand alone; He must be worshiped not as One who stands alongside the governmental leaders of this world, but as standing above them as King of kings and Lord of lords.
Whether it's Nazism, Marxism or Secularism, the state is always in conflict with religious freedom.

Following this disturbing introduction, Lutzer launches into the heart of his book by outlining seven lessons he believes Americans need to learn from Nazi Germany. The seven are listed below, with a quote from each section.

1) When God is separated from government, judgment follows.

And so it was that secularism was imposed on the German people. The role of the Church was minimized by privatizing faith and instituting laws about what could or could not be said from a pulpit.

2) It's always the economy.

When given a choice, most people probably will choose bread and sausage above the free market and individual liberties.

3) That which is legal might also be evil.

When God is separated from government, we are forced to accept arbitrary laws. Either God is the lawgiver or Man is; either we derive our laws from theistic universal values, or we say that the individual countries or cultures are the lawgivers. Either God is supreme or the state is supreme... a court can make abortion legal, but it cannot make it moral... Show me your laws and I will show you your God.

4) Propaganda can change a nation.

Perhaps the most enduring lesson of Nazi Germany is that ordinary people, simply concerned about living their own lives, can be motivated to become a part of an evil movement through the power of compelling propaganda, intimidation and mass euphoria.

5) Parents — not the state — are responsible for a child's training.

Today's law in Germany that makes home schooling illegal reminds us of a Nazi-era law instigated by Hitler back in 1938. He declared that public education was compulsory and that children could not be educated in the home. The state, not the family or the Church had first dibs regarding the child's education.

6) Ordinary heroes can make a difference.

"When God calls a man, He bids him come and die," wrote Dietrich Bonhoeffer during the dark days when the Church in Germany was being Nazified. And at the age of 39, he practiced what he preached; he was hanged on the gallows and died...
Today in America we need an army of ordinary heroes to stand against the gathering darkness in our land. We need people who will stand for truth courageously, consistently, and with humility and grace.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer

7) We must exalt the Cross in the gathering darkness.

... without the Cross we pound a nail in our coffin! There is a danger that we become so overburdened with social/political agendas that our message is lost amid our many cultural skirmishes. The Church has always faced the temptation to modify the Gospel or make it secondary to a given political, philosophical or cultural agenda... God is neither Republican nor Democrat. When the Cross is wrapped in the flag of a political party, it is always distorted or diminished.

Lutzer points out how we as Christians have allowed the culture to divert our eyes from Jesus onto ourselves:

In the evangelical community, psychology is substituted for theology and cheap grace has replaced what Bonhoeffer described as "costly grace." In short, we have lost our intellectual and spiritual center and replaced it with consumerism, self-help and the quest for personal advantage. We are self-absorbed rather than God-absorbed. And we can see the results.


In the fifth and last part of this series on Hitler's Nightmare, I'll explain where the potential for evil lies.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Hitler's Nightmare: Part 3 of 5

Dr. David R. ReaganPDFBy

The question posed was: "Could Nazi Germany happen here in America?"


A Powerful Sermon

I now want to call your attention to another major prophetic voice that God has called to warn our nation — namely, Erwin Lutzer, the Pastor of The Moody Church in Chicago, Illinois.

He has been speaking out strongly and fearlessly for several years, unafraid of whose toes he might step on.

As examples of what he is saying to our nation, I would point you to two sources in particular. One is a sermon of his that you can find on the church's website. It is titled, "America's Spiritual Crisis." The other is an outstanding book that was published in 2010. It is titled, "When a Nation Forgets God: 7 Lessons We Must Learn From Nazi Germany."

When a Nation Forgets God

In his sermon, Lutzer begins by going directly for the jugular, by providing a no-holds-barred definition of the problem:

Despite its foundational Christian heritage, America is rapidly degenerating into a godless society. The Church in America, although highly visible and active, appears powerless to redirect the rushing secular currents. Mired in moral and spiritual crisis, America's only hope is a national revival, like God has graciously bestowed in the past.

He proceeds to emphasize the way in which our leaders are doing everything they can to erase God from America's consciousness.

The powers in America today... have chosen a path of rejecting God and His ways. Federal courts have interpreted our constitution as requiring that the Bible, prayer and religious discussion be removed from classrooms, community buildings and places of public gatherings. Government officials and educators across the country are systematically eliminating any vestiges of God from society. Militant secularists will not be satisfied until God is expunged from every fact of American life.

As for Christianity in particularly, Lutzer declares that "society is becoming openly hostile to Christian values." In this regard, he points out that "the media trivializes and ridicules Christianity in the name of humanistic and pluralistic concerns." Commenting further on the influence of the media, he writes:

American culture is dominated by television and movies, whose profanity and lewdness tramp God's honor into the mud, inculcating non-Christian values from infancy. Public schools teach our children how to practice various forms of immorality. One school curriculum in America teaches acceptance of homosexuality in the first grade and mutual masturbation in junior high... America is reaping the dire consequences of rejecting God. Our society is morally bankrupt, and the problems seem resistant to government cures.

As a pastor, Lutzer is particularly concerned about the waning influence of the Church. He declares:

The Church in America, despite its many activities and apparent successfulness, has had no measurable affect in reversing the downward spiral... Sadly, the influence has been in the wrong direction, as we see evidence that our culture has begun to permeate our churches. The Church is seduced by the social agenda of wealth and pleasure, and has condoned sinful compromises.


In the fourth part of this series on Hitler's Nightmare, Erwin Lutzer outlines seven lessons he believes Americans need to learn from Nazi Germany.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Hitler's Nightmare: Part 2 of 5

Dr. David R. ReaganPDFBy

The question posed was: "Could Nazi Germany happen here in America?"


The Needed Spark

All that is needed is a spark to set off a new civil war that will lead to the suspension of civil liberties and the institution of martial law.

I believe that spark will most likely be an overwhelming economic collapse — one far more severe than the one we experienced in 2008. I believe that because, as I said before, the dollar has become our god, and the true God of this universe is a jealous God who delights in destroying false gods.

That economic collapse will most likely be triggered by a major terrorist attack, possibly involving nuclear weapons. Just imagine the national chaos that would occur if a nuclear device were to be detonated by a suicide crew on a merchant ship in New York harbor. It could easily happen.

Hitler in Crowd

The Bible makes it clear that God never pours out His wrath on a nation without warning. He will send both remedial judgments and prophetic voices to call the nation to repentance before He will deliver it to destruction.

God is doing that in America today. He responded to our Sexual Revolution in the 1960s with the Vietnam War that ended up plaguing the soul of our nation. He has sent natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina, man-made disasters like the 9/11 attacks, and economic calamities like the stock market crash of 2008.


Prophetic Voices

God has also sent the prophetic voices calling the nation to repentance and warning of impending judgments. The first major voice to be anointed was that of Dave Wilkerson, who told in the 1970s about his vision of New York City burning.

In recent years the prophetic voices have been greatly multiplied and magnified because we as a nation have dug in our heels and refused to repent.

In previous issues of the Lamplighter magazine we have focused on two of the prophetic voices God has anointed to call us to our senses — Messianic Rabbi Jonathan Cahn (May-June 2013) and Baptist Pastor Robert Jeffress (November-December 2013). You can find both of these issues on our website.


In the third part of this series on Hitler's Nightmare, I'll share what Erwin Lutzer believes is the problem that makes the United States ripe for a dictator.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Hitler's Nightmare: Part 1 of 5

Dr. David R. ReaganPDFBy

Could Nazi Germany happen here in America?

The question posed is one I have often asked people, and the answer I have always received is a resounding, "NO!"

The reasons given usually include such things as:

  • America's strong Christian heritage.
  • Our nation's commitment to freedom and liberty — both in our constitution and in practice for over two centuries.
  • The high level of education and civilized culture that characterizes our nation.

Those are good reasons, and on the surface, they seem invincible. But they are not.

We need to remind ourselves that pre-Nazi Germany had a strong Christian heritage. It was, in fact, the heartland of the Reformation Movement.

Germany also contained a highly educated and erudite population, and was a land of literary giants and scientific geniuses. It was, in fact, one of the most advanced civilizations on earth.

And Germany also had a democratic government. In fact, Hitler was elected to power.


The Trigger

So, what happened? The nation's economy was destroyed by World War I and the draconian reparations Germany was required to pay after the war. Racked by a runaway inflation and widespread joblessness, the German economy created the kind of despair that will motivate people to seek desperate solutions.

Our nation is a sitting duck for the same type of peaceful transition to the form of totalitarian dictatorship that Hitler instituted.

Just think about it for a moment.

Hitler

In the 1960s we began to jettison our Christian heritage. It happened quickly and decisively, and it continues to accelerate to this day. The culture war has been won by the secularists and pagans, and we can no longer claim to be a "Christian nation." Without the inhibitions of Christian morality, the demons have been let loose. And so, on a daily basis, we witness senseless killings and gross immorality.

Churches have gotten in bed with the world, endorsing such biblical abominations as homosexuality and same-sex marriage. And they have surrendered to the demands of "tolerance" by embracing such heresies as "many roads to God." Polls show that the number of Bible-believing Christians in America is no greater than 9%. The Church has ceased to be a restrainer of evil.

Our level of education is certainly very high, but we have kicked God out of our educational institutions from the pre-school to the graduate level. The result is a pagan education that teaches our children that there is no God and that they are simply the accidents of evolution. In short, they are being taught that they are nothing more than a higher species of animal, and they are acting like it.

Our culture is becoming increasingly depraved. Immorality is being encouraged by our governments, and it is being celebrated in our movies and television programs. Hedonism and materialism are the driving forces in our culture. The dollar has become our god.

Our democratic heritage is also being rapidly undermined by the centralization of power in the national government and its ever-increasing welfare programs. More and more people are becoming wards of the state, and when it comes to voting, their only concern is which candidate will promise to give them the most "free stuff."

Our governmental leaders, particularly at the national level, have become so corrupt that we can no longer believe anything they have to say.

Our nation is becoming increasingly polarized. The two coasts are battling the center of the country. The young are fed up with having to support our exploding class of senior citizens. Blacks and Hispanics are at each other's throats. Pagans continue to try to silence Christians.


In the second part of this series on Hitler's Nightmare, I'll identify what the spark could be that would set off a second American civil war.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Tribulation Versus the Great Tribulation: The Abomination of Desolation

Nathan JonesMP3 PDFBy

What event starts the second half of the Tribulation, which is called the Great Tribulation?

On July 23, 2014, I was interviewed by Vic Batista, senior pastor of the Miami-based Calvary Chapel Aventura on his radio program "The Truth Will Set You Free" via TWave Radio. "Pastor Vic" (as he likes to be called) was born in the Dominican Republic and is as active in planting churches and helping orphans there as he is in southern Florida, reaching out with the Good News of Jesus Christ to both the English and Spanish speaking audiences.

Pastor Vic Batista

In this "The Truth Will Set You Free" episode, we discuss the differences between the Tribulation and the Great Tribulation. The first half of the discussion is in English, while the second half is translated into Spanish.

Play MP3


The Great Tribulation

Let's go back to Matthew 24 where we'll read, "Therefore when you see the 'abomination of desolation,' spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (whoever reads, let him understand), then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let him who is on the housetop not go down to take anything out of his house. And let him who is in the field not go back to get his clothes. But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! And pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath."

In the middle of the Tribulation, that's 3.5 years into it, the Antichrist will come to Jerusalem. Preaching from Jerusalem will be what's called the Two Witnesses. For the first 42 months, which we read about in Revelation 11, they'll be preaching from Jerusalem the Good News to all the people of the world. The Antichrist will hate them, but they're indestructible until they're time is complete. That time is done when the Antichrist shows up in Jerusalem at the midpoint. He kills the Two Witnesses. He then goes into the Third Temple which the Jews will have rebuilt by then on the Temple Mount, and he'll go in there and desecrate it by setting up a statue of himself. He'll then declare himself to be God and make everybody bow down and worship him.

The result of the desecration we read in Matthew 24 is that a remnant of the Jews will then flee out of Jerusalem. They'll pour down to southern Jordan. Because of Psalm 83, we know that Israel will have conquered Jordan at some point and have control of it. They Israelis will go to Jordan and stay there where they'll be protected by God.

That's the event that starts the Great Tribulation, and that's how it will begin. So, the Tribulation lasts for seven years, but when the Jews are being persecuted by the Antichrist, that's what starts the Great Tribulation. The Great Tribulation is the last half of the Tribulation. The last half will include the Seventh Trumpet Judgment and the Seven Bowl Judgments.

Vic: Nathan, what a great point you made. Many people are mistaken thinking that the first 3.5 years of the Tribulation are going to be peaceful, but the Bible says otherwise. It says that there's going to be a major earthquake that's felt around the world and many other terrifying events during the first half.

Nathan: Yes, the Tribulation pretty much begins with an earthquake that's so bad that it levels the mountains. It says that the rulers of the world will hide in caves and cry out for the wrath of the Lord to stop.

Then we get to the Seventh Trumpet Judgment in the middle of the Tribulation, which is at the beginning of the Great Tribulation. We read in Revelation 11 where it says that the temple of God was open in Heaven and the Ark of His Covenant was seen in His temple. Hey, you want to know where the Ark of the Covenant is? The Ark was seen in His temple. There's all sorts of lightning, noise, thunder, an earthquake and great hail.

So, to sum up, the Great Tribulation starts out with the Antichrist declaring himself to be God. Satan possesses the Antichrist at that time. He's ruling directly over the whole world through Satan's power. Then another great earthquake begins the next series of judgments for the latter half of the Tribulation.

Vic: Wow, those are some amazing yet terrible events coming down the line. That's why I just want to offer some hope to everyone, because a lot of what you are sharing with us is something that is for the future, but we believe that time is coming up quickly. Nobody promises us tomorrow, therefore we need to be ready today.


Preparing Your Heart

Vic: Nathan, I wanted to see if maybe you could shout out a word of encouragement to someone that's out there who may not have a relationship with the Lord?

Nathan: Certainly. The reason why God tells us about the future is because He wants us to know what's going to be coming so that we have a chance to ask for forgiveness of our sins and to accept Jesus as our Savior. Jesus died on the cross for you because He loves you and He wants you to be saved. He wants you to be free of your sins and the guilt and burden that you carry. To accept Christ's gift, you have to surrender your life to Him.

In your heart pray, "Dear, Jesus, please forgive me of my sins and be my Savior."

Jesus promises to forgive you of your sins and to rapture you up with the Church before the Tribulation. He'll give you an eternal life with Him. The rest of the world will suffer through the Tribulation, but many will turn to Jesus as their Savior at that time. Don't be one of those people who has to survive through the Tribulation, because most will not survive to the end. Most people will die, and there will be very few left alive by the end of the Tribulation.

Pastor Vic, we haven't even talked about the seven Bowl Judgments in Revelation 16, where most of the world is utterly destroyed. There's very few people left alive by the end of the Tribulation. That's why this is the time for everyone to give their heart to Jesus Christ and avoid all of that, but most importantly to also be free of their sins.

Vic: Amen! And, Nathan, maybe for that person who doesn't know how to pray, could you give a prayer to show how they can begin that relationship with Jesus?

Nathan: Sure, Pastor Vic. It all comes down to a decision of faith. It's about trusting that Jesus died for your sins. As John 3:16 teaches, "For God so loved the world that He gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life."

Jesus wants to give you eternal life, and all you have to do in your heart is put your faith in him and pray something like, "Dear, Jesus, please forgive me of my sins and be my Savior." Jesus promises to forgive you, to give you a new life, to be the Lord of your life, to direct you in your paths throughout the rest of your life here on this earth, and give you eternal life.

Vic: Amen! Thank you so much, Nathan, and again thank you for all the wonderful information that you just filled our hearts and our brains with.

Nathan: Praise the Lord. I hate to leave such a burden on people, but it's important to know that the Lord wants us to realize what's coming down on the world soon. That's why it's so important that we give our lives to Jesus Christ right away.

Vic: Again, you're tuned into the "Truth Will Set You Free" Bible Prophecy edition with Vic Batista and Nathan Jones. You can always reach out to us here at TWave.org or simply by calling 305-992-9537. May the Lord bless you!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Tribulation Versus the Great Tribulation: Unleashing the Antichrist

Nathan JonesMP3 PDFBy

Will the first half of the Tribulation be peaceful?

On July 23, 2014, I was interviewed by Vic Batista, senior pastor of the Miami-based Calvary Chapel Aventura on his radio program "The Truth Will Set You Free" via TWave Radio. "Pastor Vic" (as he likes to be called) was born in the Dominican Republic and is as active in planting churches and helping orphans there as he is in southern Florida, reaching out with the Good News of Jesus Christ to both the English and Spanish speaking audiences.

Pastor Vic Batista

In this "The Truth Will Set You Free" episode, we discuss the differences between the Tribulation and the Great Tribulation. The first half of the discussion is in English, while the second half is translated into Spanish.

Play MP3


Unleashing the Antichrist

Nathan: Revelation divides the judgments of the Tribulation into three groups of seven – the Seven Seal Judgments, the Seven Trumpet Judgments and the Seven Bowl Judgments.

The First Seal Judgment starts with the Antichrist conquering the world. The world will cry out for a one-world ruler to fix all of their problems. They world will get someone who at first will dazzle them, but as time goes on they're not going to like the person whom they get. Initially, he'll be a great orator and a great politician. Revelation 6 says he conquers with a bow, but he has no arrows. In other words, he doesn't at first need war to conquer. But, as soon as the Antichrist sets up the peace treaty with Israel according to Daniel 9, that's when the seven-year Tribulation begins.

Vic: The old saying is true, "We get what we ask for."

Nathan: Oh, yes, indeed. Just look at what the former head of the UN said. He decried about how much the world needs a one-world ruler to bring peace and harmony, and that the world couldn't care less whether the man was a god or a demon, either way we would all accept him. And, a demon is what they're going to get – Satan himself.

The Antichrist will be a monster of a person possessed by Satan. He'll plunge the world into World War III. We read in the Second Seal Judgment how the world will be plunged into a war as the Antichrist conquers those different nations which resist his rule.

The Antichrist's peace treaty with Israel protects Israel for the first 3.5 years of the Tribulation. We know from Revelation and also Daniel that Israel will be at peace for the first 3.5 years of the Tribulation. The Antichrist will then use that time to conquer the rest of the world. We read that a quarter of the world population will die in that war, which is 1.5 billion people in today's numbers.

Vic: Oh, how awful. Nathan, we know that all this is coming right around the corner in a sense compared to the thousands of years that we've waited for Israel to become a nation again. These Tribulation events can literally unfold in the very near future.

Nathan: Yes, I agree. Jesus said that as we get closer and closer to the end times, then the signs of the end times which He gives us in Matthew 24 will come upon the world more frequent and more intense. For example, with natural disasters, we've always had them, but they will come more frequently and more intensely. The chaos from the fragility of the politics of the world will come more frequent and more intense. The wars and rumors of wars will come more frequently and more intensely, and we are seeing this happening this very day.

Just watch the news and you'll see how the world is ratcheting up for something big. In the center of it all is Israel, just like God said in Zechariah 12 and 14. He said that Israel would become the center of the world's attention. The world today blames Israel for all of its problems, for its financial problems and for the political situation in the Middle East. Antisemitism is on the rise, so we know that prophecy is being fulfilled and that Jesus is coming back soon.

After this terrible world war in the Seal Judgments of Revelation 6, the Third Seal Judgment will follow bringing famine and disease. The result will be another quarter of the world's population will die. So, just in the first year or two of the Tribulation, half the world's population will die from war, famine and plague.

Vic: Absolutely terrible! What a sound of alarm that should be for people today to take seriously.

Vic: Nathan, the first half of the Tribulation, will it seem then that everything's peaceful?

Nathan: Well, for the Jews it will be. They are engaged in a peace treaty with the Antichrist, so they're protected. The treaty likely is the result of another war talked about in Ezekiel 38 and 39, and that's the Gog & Magog War. That's when all the Islamic nations come against Israel, along with Russia. God steps in and destroys those nations and their armies. Just think of Russia and the Middle East no longer being a player in world politics. That's a huge change! So, Israel will be at peace, but the rest of the world will be in a world war.

Some theologians believe that the first half of the Tribulation will be peaceful and the second half of the Tribulation is all out war and destruction, but that's far from the truth. Just read about the first four Seal Judgments and you'll see the whole world is plunged into war, except for Israel. Death will be everywhere, so the first half is hardly peaceful.


In the fifth and last part of this discussion with Pastor Vic on the Great Tribulation, we'll learn why the second half of the Tribulation is even worst than the first, but offer up real hope.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Tribulation Versus the Great Tribulation: Three Purposes

Nathan JonesMP3 PDFBy

What are the three main purposes for the coming Tribulation?

On July 23, 2014, I was interviewed by Vic Batista, senior pastor of the Miami-based Calvary Chapel Aventura on his radio program "The Truth Will Set You Free" via TWave Radio. "Pastor Vic" (as he likes to be called) was born in the Dominican Republic and is as active in planting churches and helping orphans there as he is in southern Florida, reaching out with the Good News of Jesus Christ to both the English and Spanish speaking audiences.

Pastor Vic Batista

In this "The Truth Will Set You Free" episode, we discuss the differences between the Tribulation and the Great Tribulation. The first half of the discussion is in English, while the second half is translated into Spanish.

Play MP3


A Remnant of Israel Saved

Nathan: This Tribulation time of judgment has three purposes.

In the last chapter of Amos, he talks about the Day of the Lord, which is this time of judgment coming upon the earth. We read in Jeremiah 30:7 the first purpose, that it's going to be a time of great distress for Israel. For the last 2,000 years, God's focus has pretty much been on Gentiles coming to know Jesus as Savior through the activities of missionaries through the Church, but God isn't done with Israel. He has a redemptive plan for them, which is why He's regathered them back into the land of Israel. It's amazing that after 1,900 years of the Jews being in exile, Israel is a nation once again.

Vic: Yes, that's so amazing!

Nathan: A nation coming back from the dead after centuries has never happened before. You don't see the Hittites coming back and restarting their country, or the American Indians creating their own nations again outside of the reservation. But, when Israel happens to be brought back into their land, it means something. They are still important. Jesus in Matthew 24 said that when we see Israel brought back together as a nation again, then the Tribulation will come.

Vic: That's amazing! We know that Lamb & Lion Ministries' founder, Dr. David Reagan, has a great love for Israel. In one of your conferences you talked about the many pilgrimages that you and he have made to Israel so that people could see the truth of this great miracle happening there. I think you mentioned something like six million Jews have returned to the land since 1948?

Nathan: Yes, there's about 12.5 million Jews worldwide, and now half of them live in Israel. The fact of the matter is interesting, because Zechariah prophesied again and again that Israel would be the center of the world's attention and that people would be consumed with who gets to control Jerusalem. All you have to do is turn on the news and everything's about Israel. It's Israel this or Israel that, and of course right now Israel is having to deal with Gaza.

The fact that Gaza is sort of recognized as a nation once again plays into Bible prophecy, because Psalm 83 prophesies that Israel will have to subdue there hostile neighbors such as Gaza. Maybe that's what's happening in Gaza right now with Operation Protective Edge. Maybe this conflict is the beginning of that Psalm 83 War the Bible prophesied would happen right before the Tribulation.

It's just incredible that we're seeing all these things that the Bible prophesied coming true in our day. And so, we know the Tribulation is about bringing the Jews to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. A third of the Jewish people who will have survived the Tribulation will come to know Jesus as their Savior.

During the Tribulation, many Gentiles from every tribe, tongue, nation and people the Bible says will accept Jesus as their Savior as well.

Vic: That's why you mentioned that Bible prophecy is not all about doom and gloom. God has a wonderful plan for the nation of Israel, and we read that salvation is going to come and the Holy Spirit is going to be poured out upon them one day soon.

Nathan: Yes, but the Church won't be here to witness it, because we'll be raptured off this earth before that happens. God, though, afterwards brings to salvation 144,000 Jewish evangelists. They go out across the earth along with a messenger angel to share the Gospel throughout the entire world.


Prepping the World for Christ's Reign

Nathan: The second purpose of the Tribulation is a judgment on the world. Revelation tells of 21 judgments that will befall this world during that time. They'll devastate the economic, the social, the ecological and the human population. God uses these disasters also to bring people down to their knees where they'll finally accept Jesus as Savior.

During the Tribulation people will come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. He wants to rescue people's souls for eternity. So, as terrible as the Tribulation sounds, sometimes that suffering is what it takes to turn people's hearts. Sometimes God just has to bring people to their knees before they'll finally relent and surrender and give their lives to Jesus Christ.

The third purpose for the Tribulation is for Jesus to return and defeat evil and set up His kingdom.

Vic: That's why we're telling people to come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ today, so they won't have to suffer the Tribulation, right?

Nathan: Right. The Rapture of the Church is an imminent event, which means it could happen at any moment. After that, if you're unsaved, then you're left behind. You'll then have to endure the Tribulation. You'll see the Antichrist, who is this one-world ruler who'll arise out of Europe. He'll make a peace treaty with Israel. Then you'll know you're living in the Tribulation.


In the fourth part of this discussion with Pastor Vic on the Great Tribulation, we'll see what the Antichrist causes to start the worst time in human history.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Tribulation Versus the Great Tribulation: Daniel's Seventieth Week

Nathan JonesMP3 PDFBy

How long will the coming Tribulation last?

On July 23, 2014, I was interviewed by Vic Batista, senior pastor of the Miami-based Calvary Chapel Aventura on his radio program "The Truth Will Set You Free" via TWave Radio. "Pastor Vic" (as he likes to be called) was born in the Dominican Republic and is as active in planting churches and helping orphans there as he is in southern Florida, reaching out with the Good News of Jesus Christ to both the English and Spanish speaking audiences.

Pastor Vic Batista

In this "The Truth Will Set You Free" episode, we discuss the differences between the Tribulation and the Great Tribulation. The first half of the discussion is in English, while the second half is translated into Spanish.

Play MP3


Daniel's Seventieth Week

Vic: Nathan, please continue sharing with us about the Tribulation. Then, maybe tell to us about what's going to happen in the first part of the Tribulation versus the second part which is called the Great Tribulation.

Nathan: In the Bible, Daniel talks about how God's end times are involved with seventy weeks of years. Daniel describes this prophetic time as seventy weeks of seven years, so 490 years. Now, 483 of those years would happen up to the time that Jesus came and made His triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Jesus' First Coming was when He first came to save the world, and He did so spiritually, but He hasn't taken His kingdom yet. That kingdom will be set up after the final seven years – the last set of seven – which will happen in the end times.

Between the 69 seven-year periods and the final one seven-year period has been the last 2,000 years. During this interlude we've been going through the Church Age. The signs of the end times Jesus gave in Matthew 24 demonstrate that He is coming back very soon, so therefore we're getting real close to the end of the Church Age and that time of the Tribulation.

For believers in Christ, the Bible promises the Rapture of the Church. First Thessalonians 4 and 1 Corinthians 15 and other verses, like in the book of John for instance, tell about Jesus' return to take the Church – believers in Christ – up in the Rapture to Heaven. We will not have to endure the seven-year Tribulation. God promises that the Church is not destined for the wrath of God. So, Christians, don't get freaked out when Vic and I start teaching about the Tribulation.

There's a seven-year Tribulation coming upon the world. We know from Daniel and Revelation that its seven years divided into two sections of 42 months each, and that's in 30-day months. So, we can calculate exactly from the beginning of the Tribulation, which Daniel 9 tells us is when the Antichrist – a one world ruler who will come on the scene – will make a peace covenant with Israel. The day that he makes his peace covenant with Israel is the countdown to the end of the Tribulation. The end of the Tribulation happens with Jesus Christ comes back to defeat evil and rule and reign.

Don't lose heart because of how terrible the Tribulation will be, because even though it's going to be the worst time in human history, it also starts the greatest time period in all of human history – the Millennial Kingdom. That's when Jesus Christ comes to rule and reign on this earth in peace, righteousness and justice.

Vic: That's awesome! Nathan, you referenced that from Daniel 9?

Nathan: Yes, Daniel 9:24-27 to be specific.

Vic: I know there's a lot of other passages that talk about the Tribulation, but Daniel was the greatest reference. I believe it's important for individuals to check these references out in the Bible for themselves.

Nathan: Here are the references. The length of the Tribulation is seven years long, described in a variety of ways as "one seven" year block in Daniel 9:27, half called "times, time and half a time" in Revelation 12:14, consisting of two "1260 days" periods in Revelation 11:3, or two "42 month" periods in Revelation 11:2 and 13:5.

All throughout the prophets in the Old Testament are references to the Day of the Lord, which is another name for the Tribulation. Daniel is like the Revelation of the Old Testament, and Zephaniah is totally about the Tribulation. The book of Zephaniah is a little minor prophet which few people ever even read.


In the third part of this discussion with Pastor Vic on the Great Tribulation, we'll look at God's first purpose for the Tribulation.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Tribulation Versus the Great Tribulation: The Coming Apocalypse

Nathan JonesMP3 PDFBy

What exactly is the Tribulation?

On July 23, 2014, I was interviewed by Vic Batista, senior pastor of the Miami-based Calvary Chapel Aventura on his radio program "The Truth Will Set You Free" via TWave Radio. "Pastor Vic" (as he likes to be called) was born in the Dominican Republic and is as active in planting churches and helping orphans there as he is in southern Florida, reaching out with the Good News of Jesus Christ to both the English and Spanish speaking audiences.

Pastor Vic Batista

In this "The Truth Will Set You Free" episode, we discuss the differences between the Tribulation and the Great Tribulation. The first half of the discussion is in English, while the second half is translated into Spanish.

Play MP3


The Coming Apocalypse

Vic: Today we're going to be talking about this incredible topic of the Tribulation versus the Great Tribulation. It's a topic that many people get confused about.

Nathan, could you read for us Matthew 24:21?

Nathan: I'd be happy too. I'll be reading out of the New King James. "For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be."

Vic: Wow, that's incredible! And, Nathan, would you explain to us what the Tribulation is exactly? And, in particular, the difference between the first and second time periods of the Tribulation?

Nathan: Matthew 24:21 says that the Tribulation is going to be the worst time in human history. God is going to bring judgment upon this earth, and it will be so bad that it'll be unlike anything seen before in human history.

The Tribulation rather reminds me of those Terminator movies, with the machines crunching over skulls and the nuked landscape and everything's dead and humanity's on the brink of extinction. It's interesting how our society today is obsessed with movies that talk about the apocalypse, the end times, and the end of humanity. In fact, a lot of that imagery is based on what the Bible teaches concerning the Tribulation. It's not that there will be terminators running around, but the fact that we're going to get to that point in human history when humanity will exist in a post-apocalyptic era, that according to the Bible is indeed coming. The Bible calls it the Tribulation, which is a seven-year time period coming upon this earth.

Vic: You're right, Nathan. It's almost as if the world is being prepared for such things. We see all these movies coming out about zombies and vampires and stuff which portray humanity at the end of its rope.

Nathan: Another interesting fact about society anticipating the end times is that just recently a survey was made of teenagers today. It asked them, "What is your biggest fear of the future?" You would think they'd have said jobs or uncertainty about college, but no, their number one fear is of a coming apocalypse. So, it makes you wonder, because a lot of these kids aren't schooled in the Bible. It makes me wonder where they're getting this idea that the end of the world is coming.

I believe you're right, Pastor Vic. Even though Hollywood and books and TV are obsessed with the idea of the end of the world, it's a biblical event long ago foretold. These media reinterpret the Tribulation, of course. Nevertheless, the Bible teaches that there'll be a great Tribulation coming upon the world, an apocalypse, an end time which will result in the almost total destruction of humanity.

Vic: That's an excellent point, and that's why we want to clarify this event called the Tribulation.


In the second part of this discussion with Pastor Vic on the Great Tribulation, we'll see what the prophet Daniel had to say about his prophetic Seventieth Week.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Criticisms of the Rabbi Kaduri Story: The Witnessing Criticism

Nathan JonesWatch MP3 PDFBy

Have you heard the amazing story about the world renowned Rabbi Yitzhak Kaduri who left a sealed message to be opened a year after his death? He said the Messiah had appeared to him and that the message would contain the Messiah's identity. And, when the message was opened in 2007, it shocked the entire Orthodox Jewish world, so much so in fact that they have tried to keep it quiet ever since.

Pastor Carl Gallups of Carl Gallups Ministries, author of one of the best apologetics books called The Magic Man in the Sky , reveals just what the rabbi's message said and how it has shocked the Orthodox Jewish world in his latest book The Rabbi who Found Messiah. The Kaduri story has also ignited a firestorm of controversy in the Christian community, so much so in fact that we have invited Carl back a second time on Christ in Prophecy to discuss the impact this story has made.

[Note: Lamb & Lion Ministries is simply reporting on the story of Rabbi Kaduri. We are neither endorsing Kabbalah nor substantiating Kaduri's claim of having met the Messiah.]

Carl Gallups


The Witnessing Criticism

Carl Gallups: Another complaint that I get is, "Why would Kaduri leave a note? Why didn't he just immediately start telling people about Jesus?"

Nathan Jones: Yes, if Kaduri was really saved, he would have been running into the streets proclaiming, "Jesus is Lord!"

Dr. Reagan: They've never heard of Nicodemus, have they?

Carl Gallups: That's right, nor never heard of the Apostle Paul. It took Paul 17 years before he went out into the mission field. We read Galatians 1-2 where Paul states that it was three years before he went to Jerusalem to talk to the Apostles. He said after that it was 14 years later before he went back to the Church.

Paul also said he needed to start preaching to the Gentiles. Why? Well, first of all, he was persecuted unmercifully by his own people.

So, just think, Kaduri was really old. He was 108. If you had asked me why he left that note, when I first started writing the book I would have scratched my head and said, "I don't really know." But, after I wrote it, this is what the Holy Spirit has given me to know now. I know if God had really revealed Himself, then how brilliant a plan was this? Kaduri died just a few weeks after making his note revelation. I don't think Kaduri could have known that he would die so soon, but he said essentially, "I'm putting this in a note to be opened one year after my death." So, he created an interest, a fascination, in his message.

Kaduri's Note

One year later after Kaduri died, everyone was so eager to see what his note said. It was put on his website. Why? Because the note didn't say, "Jesus Christ is Lord." If the note had said that, when they opened it, they would have burned it, spit on it, and threw it away. Nobody would have ever known Kaduri's message.

Instead, Kaduri's note was encrypted in a Hebrew phrase that described Messianic traits. The rabbis soon discovered he had left a decoding formula. Take the first letter of each of the six Hebrew words in the note, and it'll reveal where you'll find the name of Messiah. It actually took the rabbis a few weeks to decode it all. In the meantime, screen captures were taken of the note and the media was reporting on it.

The rabbis were so thrilled that Rabbi Kaduri had left this note, that is until after they decoded it and saw that it said Yeshua is Messiah. Oh, the rabbis freaked out. They shut the story down. The rabbis knew this wasn't some false Jesus. Kaduri's note was talking about Jesus the Messiah of the New Testament!

I just think how brilliant it was for Kaduri to put his note out there in the public, because now it cannot be covered up. The book I've written and the movie that was made, they cannot be covered up. Jews are coming to Jesus in the streets like never before since the time of Jesus Himself.

I believe leaving the note was a prophetic and brilliant plan on God's part, and that's just how God would do something.


The Rabbi Who Found Messiah
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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Criticisms of the Rabbi Kaduri Story: The Different Jesus Criticism

Nathan JonesWatch MP3 PDFBy

Have you heard the amazing story about the world renowned Rabbi Yitzhak Kaduri who left a sealed message to be opened a year after his death? He said the Messiah had appeared to him and that the message would contain the Messiah's identity. And, when the message was opened in 2007, it shocked the entire Orthodox Jewish world, so much so in fact that they have tried to keep it quiet ever since.

Pastor Carl Gallups of Carl Gallups Ministries, author of one of the best apologetics books called The Magic Man in the Sky , reveals just what the rabbi's message said and how it has shocked the Orthodox Jewish world in his latest book The Rabbi who Found Messiah. The Kaduri story has also ignited a firestorm of controversy in the Christian community, so much so in fact that we have invited Carl back a second time on Christ in Prophecy to discuss the impact this story has made.

[Note: Lamb & Lion Ministries is simply reporting on the story of Rabbi Kaduri. We are neither endorsing Kabbalah nor substantiating Kaduri's claim of having met the Messiah.]

Carl Gallups


The Different Jesus Criticism

Nathan Jones: Carl, what do you say to the people who are claiming that the people who are coming to Jesus through Kaduri's revelation about Jesus being the Messiah are coming to a different Jesus? I assume they only have to go to Zev Porat's website and watch the testimonies of the Orthodox Jewish people giving their lives to Jesus Christ?

Carl Gallups: Yes, They can go to messiahofisraelministries.org. I've had Zev on my radio program several times, too. The man is a gem of a Christian. He knows the Scriptures, he's contextual, and he's as solid as any one of us here. He preaches Jesus is the Word. The desire of his heart is to take the message of Jesus to the Jews first, and to the Gentiles, as well. I think of Zev Porat like a modern day Apostle Paul. He has a heart for the Gentiles, but the first thing he wants to do is go to his own brothers.

Dr. Reagan: The Jewish people love to read because they have one of the highest percentages of books in the world per person.You know they knew there hadn't been any books written about Kaduri yet, so they really wanted to read your book.

Carl Gallups: Yes, and by the way, the movie now has been subtitled into Hebrew and Spanish. The reason I wanted it in Spanish is because I have a lot of contacts in South America. What I didn't realize until Zev told me is that there are a lot of Spanish speaking people in Israel today. So, you can see God is working powerfully through all of this.

Dr. Reagan: He's opening doors across the United States for you to show the film in churches, too?

Carl Gallups: Yes, churches all over America are showing my film on the Kaduri story. I've been getting tons of positive feedback, even from some of the most fundamental, conservative churches and pastors. Once they watch the movie, they understand it in its context.

Most of the criticism I get are from people who have not watched the movie or read the book at all. They haven't even tried to understand it.

Dr. Reagan: Nine times out of ten, when I get a critical letter about this subject, you can tell from the letter that they haven't read your book.

Carl Gallups: If they would just read it all the way through, then they would love the conclusion. They'll have their questions and concerns answered.


The Reputation Evidence

Dr. Reagan: I love the way you conclude your book, The Rabbi who Found Messiah. You write the story down as an investigative reporter, which you were as a police officer before becoming a pastor. You were trained to evaluate the evidence. You ask right at the end, "Why would Kaduri leave such a note if it would only serve to discredit him?"

Carl Gallups: That's right. Why would he leave a note saying, "Jesus is the Messiah?"

Dr. Reagan: Kaduri surely knew what the reaction was going to be.

Carl Gallups: That's right. He knew that everyone of his followers would probably shun him.


In the fifth and last segment of our interview with Pastor Carl Gallups on the criticisms of the Rabbi Kaduri story, he'll address the criticism about Kaduri not openly witnessing.


The Rabbi Who Found Messiah
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