Archive for the ‘Religious News’ Category

China, the Dalai Lama, and the Silk Road project

Wednesday, April 15th, 2015


Tenzin Gyatso  also known as the Dalai Lama (photo by Christopher)

COGwriter

China has a new public concern about the Dalai Lama:

April 15, 2015

BEIJING— China accused the Dalai Lama on Wednesday of inciting a wave of self-immolations among Tibetans that are widely seen as desperate protests against Chinese rule in the Himalayan region.

Similar accusations have been denied in the past, and the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader has called the deaths sad and ineffective in changing Chinese policy.

A report issued Wednesday by the Cabinet’s State Council Information Office said Chinese police investigations showed such incidents are being “manipulated and instigated” by the Dalai Lama and his supporters.

The report said a strategy to encourage Tibetans to burn themselves to death emerged after the self-declared Tibetan government-in-exile based in India recommitted itself to non-violence in 2011.

It cited statements from exile groups that it said encouraged such acts as worthy Buddhist sacrifices and commemorated the victims as martyrs. It also said a monastic arm of the exile government coordinated with monasteries inside China to “remotely plan self-immolations.”

“To commit an act of self-violence in a public place is inherently violent behavior whose aim is to create an atmosphere of terror and transmit psychological horror,” the report said.

It gave no figures for the number of self-immolations. Independent groups say 113 men and 24 women have set themselves on fire since March 2011 and most have died of their burns.  http://www.voanews.com/content/china-accuses-dalai-lama-of-inciting-tibet-self-immolation/2719723.html

I do not know if the Dalai Lama has directly or indirectly encouraged this form of suicide protest.  If he has, that is wrong.  All forms of suicide are wrong (see also Robin Williams and the suicide ‘epidemic’).

All, including the Dalai Lama, should pray for peace and the establishment of the Kingdom of God.  While I have empathy for some of the concerns of the Tibetans, suicide is not a proper form of political protest.

China itself was also in the news for a project it wants to do:

April 15, 2015

BEIJING—

China is trying to connect more than 20 countries along the ancient Silk Road under a grandiose program christened “One Belt, One Road.” But the more than $140 billion program is facing challenges in many places over wars, territorial disputes and domestic unrest.

The plan involves expanding China’s economic influence by establishing two big foreign trade routes. One stretches overland from China through Central Asia and on to Europe, traversing many countries that are desperate for more trade options to grow their economies. The other route is a maritime trade link connecting Chinese ports with coastal trading hubs in Africa and the Middle East.

For many countries along the route, China’s ambitions could bring a welcome economic boost.

“China’s efforts to implement this initiative will likely have an important effect on the region’s economic architecture-patterns of regional trade, investment, infrastructure development-and in turn have strategic implications for China, the United States, and other major powers,” said an article published by the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Chinese Non-Interference Challenged By Ambitious Development Plan

But such an ambitious and far-reaching project also is vulnerable to becoming entangled in foreign disputes that Beijing has traditionally worked to avoid.

Those include the Ukraine crisis, island disputes involving six countries along the South China Sea, China’s border dispute with India, anti-China sentiment in Sri Lanka, instability in Myanmar’s border areas with China, terrorism in Pakistan and unrest in the western Chinese region of Xinjiang.

“If the territorial dispute cannot be solved, it is bad for the One Belt One Road program. If two neighbors are in conflict, there is no progress,” said Yao Peisheng, who earlier served as Chinese Ambassador to the Kyrgyz Republic, Latvia, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine besides the foreign ministry’s Department of European-Central Asian Affairs in Beijing. …

Some Countries Skeptical of Greater Chinese Political Influence

Countries that are extremely reluctant to join include Vietnam and the Philippines, according to Li Mingjiang, associate professor and coordinator of China programs at Singapore’s Institute of Defense Studies. Vietnam experienced anti-China riots last year after a Chinese oil rig parked in waters claimed by Vietnam. The Philippines has sought international arbitration in contesting Beijing’s claims to remote reefs that Manila claims as its own.

“There is also a feeling among ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) countries that China’s influence will rise much higher through the Silk Road program. Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia are concerned about this issue,” he said.

There are worries China would be able to overshadow the influence of ASEAN as member countries become connected by roads and sea routes financed and constructed by Chinese companies. Although it is a member of ASEAN+1, China has twice tried and failed to keep the sea dispute outside the agenda of ASEAN meetings in recent years. The Silk Road program could change that.

The territorial disputes in the South China Sea remain hotly contested, but Maritime Silk Road maps released by Chinese media have shown the route running through disputed areas. That could harden attitudes of regional countries such as Vietnam and the Philippines against the initiative.

Some Russian media also have been highlighting the dangers of the Belt and Road program conflicting with Moscow’s Eurasia initiative and helping China overtake Russia for influence among Central Asian countries.

The program may also face resistance in Sri Lanka, which recently went through an election that featured heated discussion about alleged corruption in Chinese backed projects. The new government in Colombo has suspended work on one such project for building a port city.

For now, analysts say Chinese president Xi Jinping appears to be using the One Belt One Road program as a litmus test to determine different countries’ level of cooperation.

Beijing also is expected to use its new Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) to build the transportation links and infrastructure improvements aimed at boosting the new trade routes. That initiative has gained the support of some 57 countries, including Britain, France and Germany to become members of the China-backed AIIB. …

Central Asian countries are excited about the prospects of Chinese funding because their economics have been hit due to sliding oil prices and lowered remittances from local people working in Russia.

China has allocated $40 billion to a newly created Silk Road Fund, while the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank is being created with an equity capital of $100 billion. But the actual fund made available for the program might be three or four times this amount, analysts said. Additional resources will include issuance of special bonds and low-cost financing by the Beijing based China Development Bank.

Even countries who have doubts are slowly being drawn towards the program for this reason. And despite U.S. criticism of the development bank and skepticism over the Silk Road Project, many countries are finding the promise of cheap loans and new infrastructure to be a power draw.

Because the USA is highly in debt, and many countries have needs, China’s program, especially when the AIIB is considered, has potential to greatly increase China’s influence (see also China, Gold, and the AIIB and China and 21 other Asian nations take another step to break USA dollar dominance and Europe is pivoting towards China and away from the USA and Former Treasury Secretary: USA Lost its Global Economic Leadership Last Month).

The Bible shows that China will have influence, but it will not rule over the world as some there hope.  But it likely will be very influential throughout the next decade or so.

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

China, Its Biblical Past and Future, Part 1: Genesis and Chinese Characters Where did the Chinese people come from? This article provides information showing that the Chinese peoples must have known about various accounts in the Book of Genesis up until their dispersion after the Tower of Babel. Here is a link to a version of this article in Spanish: ¿Prueban los caracteres chinos la exactitud de la Biblia?
China, Its Biblical Past and Future, Part 2: The Sabbath and Some of God’s Witness in China When did Christianity first come to China? And is there early evidence that they observed the seventh day sabbath?
Asia in Prophecy What is Ahead for Asia? Who are the “Kings of the East”? What will happen to nearly all the Chinese, Russians, Indians, and others of Asia? China in prophecy, where? Who has the 200,000,000 man army related to Armageddon? A YouTube video of interest may be Is China THE Threat to the United States of America?
Persecutions by Church and State This article documents some that have occurred against those associated with the COGs and some prophesied to occur. Will those with the cross be the persecutors or the persecuted–this article has the shocking answer. There is also a YouTube video sermon you can watch: The Coming Persecution of the Church. Here is information in the Spanish language: Persecuciones de la Iglesia y el Estado.
Does God Have a 6,000 Year Plan? What Year Does the 6,000 Years End? Was a 6000 year time allowed for humans to rule followed by a literal thousand year reign of Christ on Earth taught by the early Christians? Does God have 7,000 year plan? What year may the six thousand years of human rule end? When will Jesus return? 2021 or 20xx? There is also a video titled The 6000 Year Plan: Is the end of humanity’s reign almost up?
When Will the Great Tribulation Begin? 2015, 2016, or 2017? Can the Great Tribulation begin today? What happens before the Great Tribulation in the “beginning of sorrows”? What happens in the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord? Is this the time of the Gentiles? When is the earliest that the Great Tribulation can begin? What is the Day of the Lord? Who are the 144,000? Here is a version of the article in the Spanish language: ¿Puede comenzar la Gran Tribulación en 2014 o 2015? ¿Es el Tiempo de los Gentiles? You can also see the English language sermon video: The Great Tribulation from the Mount of Olives.
Project Prophecy: Economic Collapse Starting in 2015? Jim Rickards once worked for the CIA and also was once part of a a USA government program called called ‘Project Prophecy.’ He has a video were he claims that starting in 2015, the USA may have economic collapse resulting in a 25-Year Great Depression. He mainly cites debt figures and claims advises alternatives to the USA dollar which he says will collapse? What did Rand Paul state? Can the USA dollar collapse?
Market Collapse then New World Order in 2015? A long-time financial adviser named Harvey Organ claims that claims that because of insufficient gold in the central banks of USA and UK, that Shanghai would bring about exposing this and that this would lead to a massive, overnight, rise in the price of gold and silver, diminished value of their currencies. He states a market collapse will occur before the end of 2014, that the petroyuan will replace the petrodollar, and that a Chinese led New World Order will be in place for 2015. Is this possible? Where does the leader of the ‘New World Order’ come from? What does the Bible teach?
Anglo – America in Prophecy & the Lost Tribes of Israel Are the Americans, Canadians, English, Scottish, Welsh, Australians, Anglo-Saxon (non-Dutch) Southern Africans, and New Zealanders descendants of Joseph? Where are the lost ten-tribes of Israel? Who are the lost tribes of Israel? What will happen to Jerusalem and the Jews in Israel? Will God punish the U.S.A., Canada, United Kingdom, and other Anglo-Saxon nations? Why might God allow them to be punished first? Here is a link to the Spanish version of this article: Anglo-América & las Tribus Perdidas de Israel. Information is also in the YouTube sermons titled Where are the Ten Lost Tribes? Why does it matter? and British are the Covenant People. A short YouTube of prophetic interest may be Barack Obama and the State of the Apocalypse.
The Gospel of the Kingdom of God was the Emphasis of Jesus and the Early Church Did you know that? Do you even know what the gospel of the kingdom is all about? True religion should be based upon the true gospel.
Did The Early Church Teach Millenarianism? Was the millennium (sometimes called chiliasm) taught by early Christians? Who condemned it? Will Jesus literally reign for 1000 years on the earth? Is this time near? A related sermon is titled The Millennium.
Barack Obama, Prophecy, and the Destruction of the United States-Second Edition for Second Obama Term This is a 160 page book for people truly interested in prophecies related to Barack Obama and the United States, including learning about many that have already been fulfilled (which the book documents in detail) and those that will be fulfilled in the future. It also has a chapter about a Republican choice. This book is available to order at www.barackobamaprophecy.com. The physical book can also be purchased at Amazon from the following link: Barack Obama, Prophecy, and the Destruction of the United States: Is Barack Obama Fulfilling Biblical, Islamic Catholic, Kenyan, and other America-Related Prophecies? What About Republican Leaders? Second Edition for Second Obama Term.
Barack Obama, Prophecy, and the Destruction of the United States-Second Term-Amazon Kindle edition. This electronic version is available for only US$2.99. And you do not need an actual Kindle device to read it. Why? Amazon will allow you to download it to almost any device: Please click HERE to download one of Amazon s Free Reader Apps. After you go to for your free Kindle reader and then go to Barack Obama, Prophecy, and the Destruction of the United States-Second Term-Amazon Kindle edition.

Might Pope Francis give away the Vatican’s wealth as his statements suggest?

Wednesday, April 15th, 2015


Pope Francis (Source: presidencia.gov.ar)

COGwriter

On more than one occasion, Pope Francis has called for the Church of Rome to be poor and/or for the poor. He has also hinted about that theme with other statements (e.g. Francis says he wants Rome less narcissistic and says he does not believe in a ‘Catholic God’ as he inaugurates a reform team) and has told others to work on wealth redistribution (see Pope Francis speaks against current economic order and Pope tells United Nations to push wealth redistribution–a sign of Revelation 13 & 17?).

Notice the following report from Zenit, a pro-Vatican news source:

April 14, 2015

Pope Francis has said the Church is not for accumulating riches, but managing them with generosity.  During Francis’ morning homily at his daily Mass at Casa Santa Marta, he made this observation…

Turning to the common good, the Pope noted that Christians are not to hold on to wealth, but to put it to the service of others in need. The Pope said it is good if someone rich uses their wealth to help others. …

he Holy Father closed inviting the faithful to bring harmony, not internal division, to their parishes, dioceses, and lives.

Francis also reminded them to be at the service of others, especially the poor, and never to accumulate wealth, but use it to help the needy.  http://www.zenit.org/en/articles/pope-s-morning-homily-don-t-accumulate-riches-be-generous-to-those-in-need

How long can Pope Francis make such pleas and not follow them himself?

Over the two years or so he has been pontiff, he has made similar statements, but without real action on his part.

Notice something from October 4, 2013:

Pope Francis on Friday (Oct. 4) traveled to Assisi, the central Italian hill town made famous by the pope’s namesake, St. Francis, where he renewed his call for Christians to forsake the pursuit of worldly possessions. The medieval saint lived in poverty in order to dedicate his life to Christ, and the pope said Christians — not just Catholics — should seek to emulate the venerated patron saint of the poor, calling the pursuit of wealth a “cancer of society and the enemy of Christ.”

The pope warned that seeking worldly possessions leads to “vanity, arrogance, and pride.”…Francis addressed a group of poor people in the same room where St. Francis is believed to have stripped off his clothes and given away his worldly possessions. The pope expressed anger at a “savage world” that “doesn’t help, doesn’t care if there are children in the world who die of hunger.” http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/on-faith/pope-francis-walks-in-the-shadow-of-namesake-saint-in-assisi/2013/10/04/c1422f12-2d21-11e3-b141-298f46539716_story.html

While on the surface this sounds like what a ‘lamb’ may say, could it be part of the speech of a dragon (Revelation 13:11)?

Notice that financial pressures will be something that the Antichrist is associated with:

16 He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, 17 and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. (Revelation 13:16-17)

The “He” above is the two-horned beast (Revelation 13:11), also known as the False Prophet (Revelation 16:13), and Antichrist (1 John 4:1-3).

The Bible also says that the merchants of the world will have gotten wealthy from the system that the Antichrist will promote:

2 Babylon the great…has become a dwelling place of demons…a cage for every unclean and hated bird! 3…and the merchants of the earth have become rich through the abundance of her luxury. (Revelation 18:2a,b,d, 3c)

So, there are several biblical prophecies that tie the power that the Antichrist supports with a type of deceitful prosperity. Did you notice the connection to a cage of birds above? Well, then notice then also the following:

27 As a cage is full of birds,
So their houses are full of deceit.
Therefore they have become great and grown rich.
28 They have grown fat, they are sleek;
Yes, they surpass the deeds of the wicked;
They do not plead the cause,
The cause of the fatherless;
Yet they prosper,
And the right of the needy they do not defend.
29 Shall I not punish them for these things?’ says the Lord.
‘Shall I not avenge Myself on such a nation as this?’

30 “An astonishing and horrible thing
Has been committed in the land:
31 The prophets prophesy falsely,
And the priests rule by their own power;
And My people love to have it so.
But what will you do in the end? (Jeremiah 5:27-31)

So, the supporters of the Beast and Antichrist/False Prophet will prosper for a time, then God will punish.

Furthermore, notice three Catholic writings/prophecies about the final Antichrist:

Saint Mechtilda (died 1299): Antichrist will, through base and false strategem, and with presents of gold and gems, attain influence over the worldly princes. They will look up to him as their Lord and God (Culleton, The Reign of Antichrist, pp. 133-134).

Saint Ephrem (died 375): Antichrist will use worldly goods as bait. He will entice many Christians with money and goods to apostatize…The devil will help him find all the hidden treasures of the world, even those at the bottom of the ocean. With those treasures he will attain greater success for the reign of Satan than at any other time in past centuries (Connor, pp.73.74).

Saint Jerome (died 420): Antichrist…will gain support with many gifts and money. He will sell himself to the devil…(Connor E. Prophecy for Today. Imprimatur + A.J. Willinger, Bishop of Monterey-Fresno; Reprint: Tan Books and Publishers, Rockford (IL), 1984, p. 74).

The Bible, by the way, does mention that the King of the North will end up with a lot of gold, silver, and precious stones (Daniel 11:38,43) and that a seven-hilled/mountain-based power will have “gold and precious stones and pearls” (Revelation 17:4).

But is it possible that before the Beast rises up that the Antichrist will use material items for bait?

Might the Antichrist use some of the wealth of the Vatican to support certain European nations/leaders? I expect this, as it seems to be likely and consistent with the following scriptures:

1…”Come, I will show you the judgment of the great harlot who sits on many waters, 2 with whom the kings of the earth committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth were made drunk with the wine of her fornication.”…9 “Here is the mind which has wisdom: The seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman sits…18:3 For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth have become rich through the abundance of her luxury.” (Revelation 17:1-2,9; 18:3)

Nor do I believe the Vatican will limit its support to Europe. The Church of Rome has a lot of worldly wealth–it is a version of that church that is being discussed above in Revelation.

Pope Francis, within days of becoming pontiff, declared, “Oh, how I would like a poor Church, and for the poor” (see Pope Francis: Do his comments about the poor show that he intend to fulfill biblical and Catholic prophecies about the final Antichrist?). Is it possible that he is suggesting that since his church hold enormous wealth in bank accounts, land, art, and jewels, that perhaps he intends to distribute some of this wealth (see Pope Francis claims he wants his church to be poor and help the poor)?

I suspect the time will come when the Vatican will actually sell/give away/pledge some of its wealth to influence world events.  Pope Francis has been hinting of this for about two years, so at some point in time, he probably intends to take action to match his rhetoric.  This will increase his popularity with the media, European leaders, and others in the world.

If Pope Francis does not end up doing this, he, at minimum, has made various statements that the final Antichrist (which may not be him as that is not certain yet), can point to as justification for wealth distribution.

Some items of related interest may include:

Mary, the Mother of Jesus and the Apparitions Do you know much about Mary? Are the apparitions real? What happened at Fatima? What might they mean for the rise of the ecumenical religion of Antichrist? Are Protestants moving towards Mary? How do the Eastern/Greek Orthodox view Mary? How might Mary view her adorers? Here is a link to a YouTube video Marian Apparitions May Fulfill Prophecy.
Pope Francis: Could this Marian Focused Pontiff be Fulfilling Prophecy? Pope Francis has taken many steps to turn people more towards his version of ‘Mary.’ Could this be consistent with biblical and Catholic prophecies? This article documents what has been happening. There is also a video version titled Pope Francis: Could this Marian Focused Pontiff be Fulfilling Prophecy?
Feast of the Immaculate Conception? Did early Christians teach Mary had an immaculate conception and led a sinless life?
Origin of the Marian Dogmas: Where Do Catholic Scholars Say The Four Dogmas of Mary Came From?
Assumption of Mary Did Mary die? Was she taken to heaven on August 15th? What is known? What does the Bible show?
Could Pope Francis be the Last Pope and Antichrist? According to some interpretations of the prophecies of the popes by the Catholic saint and Bishop Malachy, Pope Francis I is in the position of “Peter the Roman,” the pontiff who reigns during tribulations until around the time of the destruction of Rome. Do biblical prophecies warn of someone that sounds like Peter the Roman? Could Francis I be the heretical antipope of Catholic private prophecies and the final Antichrist of Bible prophecy? This is a YouTube video.
The Malachy Prophecies and “Peter the Roman” An Irish bishop allegedly predicted something about 112 popes in the 12th century. Pope Benedict XVI was number 111. Francis would seem to be number 112–if he is that one–and if so, he is to reign until Rome is destroyed. May he be an antipope/final Antichrist?
Which Is Faithful: The Roman Catholic Church or the Continuing Church of God? Do you know that both groups shared a lot of the earliest teachings? Do you know which church changed? Do you know which group is most faithful to the teachings of the apostolic church? Which group best represents true Christianity? This documented article answers those questions. [Português: Qual é fiel: A igreja católica romana ou a igreja do deus?]
Some Doctrines of Antichrist Are there any doctrines taught outside the Churches of God which can be considered as doctrines of antichrist? This article suggests at least three. It also provides information on 666 and the identity of “the false prophet.” Plus it shows that several Catholic writers seem to warn about an ecumenical antipope that will support heresy. You can also watch a video titled What Does the Bible teach about the Antichrist?
The Antichrist Quiz Do you really know much about the Antichrist?
Jesus: The Son of God and Saviour Who was Jesus? Why did He come to earth? What message did He bring? Is there evidence outside the Bible that He existed? Here is a YouTube sermon titled Jesus: Son of God and Saviour.

Vitorinus: A Catholic bishop and saint who held to teachings the Church of Rome opposes

Wednesday, April 15th, 2015


“Orthodox” 16th Century Representation of the “Apocalypse”

COGwriter

Today, some in the Church of Rome will honor one of their “saints” and bishops named Victorinus. Here is some of what The Catholic Encyclopedia reports about him:

St. Victorinus

An ecclesiastical writer who flourished about 270, and who suffered martyrdom probably in 303, under Diocletian.

He was bishop of the City of Pettau (Petabium, Poetovio), on the Drave, in Styria (Austria); hence his surname of Petravionensis or sometimes Pictaviensis, e.g. in the Roman Martyrology, where he is registered under 2 November, which long caused it to be thought that he belonged to the Diocese of Poitiers (France). Until the seventeenth century he was likewise confounded with the Latin rhetorician, Victorinus After. According to St. Jerome, who gives him an honourable place in his catalogue of ecclesiastical writers, Victorinus composed commentaries on various books of Holy Scripture, such as Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Isaias, Ezechiel, Habacuc, Ecclesiastes, the Canticle of Canticles, St. Matthew, and the Apocalypse, besides treatises against the heresies of his time…

Like many of his contemporaries he shared the errors of the Millenarians, and for this reason his works were ranked with the apocrypha by Pope Gelasius. (Clugnet, L. (1912). St. Victorinus. In The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. Retrieved April 1, 2013 from New Advent: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/15414a.htm)

Notice that like MANY GRECO-ROMAN LEADERS just prior to Constantine, Victorinus taught the millennium. That was a both a biblical doctrine as well as the teaching of most professing Christians prior to Emperor Constantine. The millennium was certainly part of the apostolic tradition (the Apostle John, after all, wrote about it in Revelation 20), thus any who challenge or dismiss it are not being faithful to biblical doctrine nor apostolic tradition.

Victorinus wrote the following about the Book of Revelation, in likely the late 3rd century:

FROM THE TWENTIETH CHAPTER.

1–3. “And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the abyss, and a chain in his hand. And he held the dragon, that old serpent, which is called the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years, and cast him into the abyss, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be finished: after this he must be loosed a little season.”]…

For we know not of those who seem to stand whether they shall not fall, and of those who are down it is uncertain whether they may rise. Moreover, that he says that he is bound and shut up, that he may not seduce the nations, the nations signify the Church, seeing that of them it itself is formed, and which being seduced, he previously held until, he says, the thousand years should be completed, that is, what is left of the sixth day, to wit, of the sixth age, which subsists for a thousand years; after this he must be loosed for a little season. The little season signifies three years and six months, in which with all his power the devil will avenge himself under Antichrist against the Church. Finally, he says, after that the devil shall be loosed, and will seduce the nations in the whole world, and will entice war against the Church, the number of whose foes shall be as the sand of the sea. (Victorinus. On the Apocalypse. Translated by Robert Ernest Wallis. From Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol. 7. Edited by Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe. [Buffalo, NY: Christian Literature Publishing Co., 1886.], p. 359. http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf07.vi.ii.xviii.html).

He also wrote:

…that true and just Sabbath should be observed in the seventh millenary of years. Wherefore to those seven days the Lord attributed to each a thousand years; for thus went the warning: “In Your eyes, O Lord, a thousand years are as one day.” Therefore in the eyes of the Lord each thousand of years is ordained, for I find that the Lord’s eyes are seven. Wherefore, as I have narrated, that true Sabbath will be in the seventh millenary of years, when Christ with His elect shall reign. (Victorinus. Commentary on the Creation. Translated by Robert Ernest Wallis. From Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol. 7. Edited by Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe. (Buffalo, NY: Christian Literature Publishing Co., 1886.) Revised and edited for New Advent by Kevin Knight).

The Roman Catholic Church, in spite of the fact that it admits that many of its early saints taught the millennium, now strongly condemns this belief. Notice:

676 The Antichrist’s deception already begins to take shape in the world every time the claim is made to realize within history that messianic hope which can only be realized beyond history through the eschatological judgment. The Church has rejected even modified forms of this falsification of the kingdom to come under the name of millenarianism, especially the “intrinsically perverse” political form of a secular messianism. (Catechism of the Catholic Church. Imprimatur Potest +Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger. Doubleday, NY 1995, p. 194).

It should be noted that the millennial teaching appears to be the only doctrine associated with Antichrist that is condemned in the current official Catechism of the Catholic Church (which is the first new one in hundreds of years). The one that has the imprimatur of Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger who is now called Pope Emeritus and formerly Benedict XVI.

It tends to amaze me that some associated with the Church of Rome do not realize that many of their “saints” held positions that are so strongly condemned by the current Roman Catholic Church.

Some articles of related interest, which contain many scriptures to search to verify what I am saying, include the following:

Did The Early Church Teach Millenarianism? Was the millennium (sometimes called chiliasm) taught by early Christians? Who condemned it? Will Jesus literally reign for 1000 years on the earth? Is this time near? A related sermon is titled The Millennium.
Does God Have a 6,000 Year Plan? What Year Does the 6,000 Years End? Was a 6000 year time allowed for humans to rule followed by a literal thousand year reign of Christ on Earth taught by the early Christians? Does God have 7,000 year plan? What year may the six thousand years of human rule end? When will Jesus return? 2022 or 20xx? There is also a video titled The 6000 Year Plan: Is the end of humanity’s reign almost up? Here is a link to the article in Spanish: ¿Tiene Dios un plan de 6,000 años?
When Will the Great Tribulation Begin? Can the Great Tribulation begin today? What happens before the Great Tribulation in the “beginning of sorrows”? What happens in the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord? Is this the time of the Gentiles? When is the earliest that the Great Tribulation can begin? What is the Day of the Lord? Who are the 144,000? Here is a version of the article in the Spanish language: ¿Puede comenzar la Gran Tribulación en 2014 o 2015? ¿Es el Tiempo de los Gentiles? You can also see the English language sermon video: The Great Tribulation from the Mount of Olives.
The Sabbath in the Early Church and Abroad Was the seventh-day (Saturday) Sabbath observed by the apostolic and post-apostolic Church? Here is a related sermon video The Christian Sabbath and How and Why to Keep It.
Some Doctrines of Antichrist Are there any doctrines taught outside the Churches of God which can be considered as doctrines of antichrist? This article suggests at least three. It also provides information on 666 and the identity of “the false prophet”. Plus it shows that several Catholic writers seem to warn about an ecumenical antipope that will support heresy. You can also watch a video titled What Does the Bible teach about the Antichrist?
Which Is Faithful: The Roman Catholic Church or the Continuing Church of God? Do you know that both groups shared a lot of the earliest teachings? Do you know which church changed? Do you know which group is most faithful to the teachings of the apostolic church? Which group best represents true Christianity? This documented article answers those questions.

Australia and California take steps to increase vaccinations

Monday, April 13th, 2015


COGwriter

A supporter in Australia tipped me off to the following:

April 13, 2015

(CNN) Parents who refuse to vaccinate their children can lose up to $11,000 of welfare benefits a year under a new government policy, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has announced.

Currently parents can choose to opt out of vaccinations for medical or religious reasons, or by stating they are “conscientious objectors,” and still receive taxpayer funded child care benefits.

Under the new “no jab, no pay” policy, the exemption as a conscientious objector will be removed starting January 2016.

“The choice made by families not to immunize their children is not supported by public policy or medical research nor should such action be supported by taxpayers in the form of child care payments,” said Abbott in a joint statement with Social Services Minister, Scott Morrison. …

Existing exemptions on medical or religious grounds will continue said Abbott, but guidelines on religious exemptions will be tightened.

“It requires the formal position of that religious body being advised to the government and approved by the government. This is a very significant narrowing,” Morrison told reporters in Sydney on Sunday.

He added that no mainstream religious organizations have made any formal objection to immunizations.  http://www.cnn.com/2015/04/13/asia/australia-anti-vaccination-welfare-cut/

So, there still will an allowance for some religious objections, but this will be complicated by the government requiring paperwork and its assessment of the religious objection.

In the State of California, there is a bill that was passed by its Senate last week that will attempt to stop children from attending school if they have not been vaccinated:

April 9, 2015

SACRAMENTO — Unswayed by a relentless parade of opposition, a key Senate panel on Wednesday passed a bill that would strengthen California’s vaccination requirements, capping an emotional hearing that marked the beginning of a battle over what has become Sacramento’s most contentious issue this year.

For more than 11/2 hours, an extraordinary wave of parents and children from across the state crept one by one to a microphone to implore the Senate Health Committee to kill the legislation they insist violates parents’ rights and puts their children at risk. …

Senate Bill 277 would require that only children who have been immunized for various diseases, including measles and whooping cough, be admitted to school in California. Only medical exemptions would be allowed. The bill also would require schools to notify parents of immunization rates at their children’s schools. http://www.mercurynews.com/health/ci_27873768/vaccine-foes-rally-at-california-capitol

Having visited the California Senate and witnessing how the committee meetings go, let me simply state that senators often vote based upon the groups that donate the most money to their campaigns.  Which, in the case of those on the Senate Health Committee would tend to include the medical profession and the pharmaceutical industry.

California also changed its vaccination policy a little while back and now REQUIRES parents who have not had their children vaccinated be counseled by a doctor and provide a signed note in order to allow them to enter school.  This was not ‘retroactive’ as far as I can tell as we have not been required to provide such a note for our one child who still attends high school.

My wife and I did not vaccinate any of our three children. Nor have she or I had any vaccines in adulthood despite traveling to various countries around the world.

Am I saying that all vaccinations are necessarily wrong?

No.

But I also do not believe that one must expose oneself or ones’ children to the pathogens and other elements involved with vaccines. Nor do I believe that vaccines should be mandated to parents. Consider also:

Are the vaccinated more likely to develop issues like asthma? According to at least one report from a pro-vaccine source I saw, the answer is yes.

Are vaccines proliferating? Yes.

About 90 years ago, early natural health proponents warned that the time would come when there were not just a few vaccines, but that there would be scores of them. That has happened.

All that being said, let me state that I believe that both the pro-vaccine crowd and the anti-vaccine crowd have used misleading information and misused statistics to attempt to prove their position.

The late Garner Ted Armstrong wrote the following in a letter dated August 17, 1962 on behalf of the Radio Church of God:

RADIO CHURCH OF GOD
WORLD HEADQUARTERS
PASADENA, CALIFORNIA 91109

HERBERT W. ARMSTRONG
PRESIDENT and PASTOR

Broadcasting The WORLD TOMORROW
Publishers of The PLAIN TRUTH

August 17, 1962

Mr. Mason Reardon, Chairman
Sabin Oral Polio Vaccination Committee
P. O, Box 254
Gilmer, Texas

Dear Sir:

Pursuant to your letter of August 10, I would like to state briefly our position regarding the Administering of oral or other vaccines.

As you may know, we do believe thoroughly in the Bible doctrine of Divine Healing. We are not, however, a Church that unduly emphasizes healing, nor do we make it a primary part of our message to the world in our world-wide evangelistic effort.

Privately, however, and as a Church, we encourage members to trust in God for their protection and their healing should sickness or disease occur. If a member is weak in faith, there is no arbitrary decision made for him, nor is there coercion by any member of the Church upon any other member as to whether he seeks the aid of organized medicine.

We have in our possession, gathered by our world-wide news bureau, with wire services directly into Ambassador College campus, thick sheafs of statistical evidence which completely render as false some of the claims connected with the sabin oral vaccine. What is considered “satisfactory results” with this vaccine?…

The doctors have plainly said that vaccinated persons pose far more threat to UNvaccinated persons so far as possible carriers of the disease is concerned. Therefore, the people of Big Sandy will have nothing to fear whatsoever from our un-vaccinated Church members. We cannot recommend to our Church members that they join in the vaccination program.

The old Radio Church of God also published the following:

One doctor states that polio is caused by a weakened physical constitution and that health-promoting foods can prevent polio completely. Children who indulge in soft drinks (especially “colas”), candy, over-sweetened and refined, starchy foods, are the greatest sufferers of polio. POLIO IS UNKNOWN in countries where people live on NATURAL foods — raw milk, whole-grain cereals, fruits and vegetables — and do not have our refined, devitalized, demineralized foods, candies and soft drinks. …

The main diet of many people, especially children, in summer (the polio season) consists of colas, soft drinks, candy, hot dogs, hamburgers and ice cream. If we would replace this “junk” with substantial meals of fresh fruits, melons, milk, vegetables and protein foods (meat, fish, poultry and eggs), then we would have greater resistance to polio and other diseases. Also, there would be almost no tooth decay. Vaccination does not eliminate the CAUSE of disease — that of WRONG LIVING HABITS! Disease is caused by wrong eating, living and thinking! Our WAY OF LIFE must be changed in order to eliminate sickness and disease. This can only be done by following the principles of life — the basic laws of health — given by our Creator in His Word, the Bible.(Boraker R.The TRUTH About DRUGS and VACCINES. Good News, August 1961)

People should eat what is good (Isaiah 55:2) and try to live in accordance with God’s laws of health.

Let’s all remember that Jesus said that a time of pestilences would come (Matthew 24:7-8). Vaccines will NOT stop this from happening, and could possibly make it worse.  In an old radio broadcast, the late Herbert W. Armstrong stated:

Jesus said in Matthew 24, and speaking in verse 8 of the pestilence and of the famine that is to come; and we’re getting a foretaste of it and there is a terrific national drought coming that will be accompanied by such disease epidemics that one third of our people are going to drop dead; and in spite of all polio vaccines and everything of the kind my friends, things are coming that doctors will never know anything about or be able to cope with. It is in your Bible.

Vaccines are not going to save society.  The late Ernest Martin wrote:

Leading doctors have warned that there is no substitute for clean living – that drugs cannot nullify the damage done by wanton breaking of all health laws – and that wholesale vaccinations can weaken man’s overall natural resistance to disease. But as long as we appear to be well, almost no one gives these warnings a second thought.(Martin E. Will we ever learns? Plain Truth, August 1965)

Turning from sin, eating only what is good, and obeying sanitary principles in the Bible are more effective than vaccines.  But most political leaders will not truly advocate all of that.  Actually, politicians like now declared presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, have claimed that giving vaccinations is one of the most important things parents can do.  The Bible says that teaching God’s ways, commandments, and judgments are what is important for parents to do.  Most politicians do not believe that.

Australia, parts of the U.S.A., and other lands are likely taking bigger risks mandating vaccines than the proponents realize.

Several items of possibly related interest may include:

Fourth Horseman of the Apocalypse What is the pale horse of death and pestilences? What will it bring and when? Spanish: El cuarto jinete de Apocalipsis, el caballo pálido de muerte y pestilencia.
Five Rules for Effective Parenting Do you know that there are five simple rules that can make you a more effective parent? Here is a link to a version in Mandarin Chinese 五条简单有效的子女养育规则. There is also a 12 1/2 minute English language YouTube video on this, also titled Five Rules for Effective Parenting.
What Psychologists do not Know About Child Rearing This is an article by Herbert Armstrong that was used as the introduction to the pdf booklet The Plain Truth About Child Rearing.
The Plain Truth About Child Rearing This is a pdf booklet that the old WCG put out.
The New Testament Church, History, and Unclean Meats Are foods considered to have been unclean in the Old Testament considered to be food in the New Testament? This article discusses this from the perspective of the New Testament. It also has a list of clean and unclean animals. It also answers the question, is pork healthy or is pork dangerous? There is also a sermon-length video on this: Christians and Unclean Meats.
Hillary Clinton in Prophecy  Prophecy, Hillary Clinton? Are there prophecies that Hillary Clinton may fulfill?  Are there any prophecies that she has already helped fulfill?  Could Hillary Clinton be apocalyptic?  Could Hillary Clinton be the final Antichrist? A video of related interest is titled Hillary Clinton and Bible Prophecy.
Anglo – America in Prophecy & the Lost Tribes of Israel Are the Americans, Canadians, English, Scottish, Welsh, Australians, Anglo-Saxon (non-Dutch) Southern Africans, and New Zealanders descendants of Joseph? Where are the lost ten-tribes of Israel? Who are the lost tribes of Israel? What will happen to Jerusalem and the Jews in Israel? Will God punish the U.S.A., Canada, United Kingdom, and other Anglo-Saxon nations? Why might God allow them to be punished first? Here is a link to the Spanish version of this article: Anglo-América & las Tribus Perdidas de Israel. Information is also in the YouTube sermons titled Where are the Ten Lost Tribes? Why does it matter? and British are the Covenant People. A short YouTube of prophetic interest may be Barack Obama and the State of the Apocalypse.
Will the Anglo-Saxon Nations be Divided and Have People Taken as Slaves? Will the lands of the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand be divided? What about Jerusalem? What does Bible prophecy teach? Are there non-biblical prophecies that support this idea? Who will divide those lands? Who will end up with the lands and the people? Here is a link to a video titled Will the USA and other Anglo-nations be Divided and Their People Made Slaves? Here is a related item in the Spanish language ¿Serán divididas las naciones anglosajonas?
GMOs and Bible Prophecy What are GMOs? Since they were not in the food supply until 1994, how could they possibly relate to Bible prophecy? Do GMOs put the USA and others at risk? Here is a related YouTube video GMO Risks and the Bible.
Chimeras: Has Science Crossed the Line? What are chimeras? Has science crossed the line? Does the Bible give any clues?
Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse What do each of the four horseman of the Apocalypse represent? Have they began their ride? Did Jesus discuss the any of this? Might their rides coincide with the “beginning of sorrows? Do they start their ride prior to the Great Tribulation? Did Nostradamus or any other ‘private prophets’ write predictions that may mislead people so that they may not understand the truth of one or more of the four horseman? There is also a related YouTube video titled The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.
When Will the Great Tribulation Begin? 2015, 2016, or 2017? Can the Great Tribulation begin today? What happens before the Great Tribulation in the “beginning of sorrows”? What happens in the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord? Is this the time of the Gentiles? When is the earliest that the Great Tribulation can begin? What is the Day of the Lord? Who are the 144,000? Here is a version of the article in the Spanish language: ¿Puede comenzar la Gran Tribulación en 2014 o 2015? ¿Es el Tiempo de los Gentiles? You can also see the English language sermon video: The Great Tribulation from the Mount of Olives.
Barack Obama, Prophecy, and the Destruction of the United States-Second Edition for Second Obama Term This is a 160 page book for people truly interested in prophecies related to Barack Obama and the United States, including learning about many that have already been fulfilled (which the book documents in detail) and those that will be fulfilled in the future. It also has a chapter about a Republican choice. This book is available to order at www.barackobamaprophecy.com. The physical book can also be purchased at Amazon from the following link: Barack Obama, Prophecy, and the Destruction of the United States: Is Barack Obama Fulfilling Biblical, Islamic Catholic, Kenyan, and other America-Related Prophecies? What About Republican Leaders? Second Edition for Second Obama Term.
Barack Obama, Prophecy, and the Destruction of the United States-Second Term-Amazon Kindle edition. This electronic version is available for only US$2.99. And you do not need an actual Kindle device to read it. Why? Amazon will allow you to download it to almost any device: Please click HERE to download one of Amazon s Free Reader Apps. After you go to for your free Kindle reader and then go to Barack Obama, Prophecy, and the Destruction of the United States-Second Term-Amazon Kindle edition.

Orthodox ‘Holy Fire miracle’

Saturday, April 11th, 2015


The Miracle of Holy Fire painting

COGwriter

Tomorrow is celebrated as Pascha by the Eastern/Greek Orthodox (which is the Greek word for Passover) and is known as ‘Easter‘ to Protestants and Catholics. The day before (which is today this year) they believe a miracle occurs.  And they believe that ‘Holy Fire’ arrived again today:

April 11, 2015

Thousands of Christian pilgrims filled Jerusalem’s ancient Church of the Holy Sepulchre on Saturday for the “Holy Fire” ceremony on the eve of Orthodox Easter.

Israeli police spokeswoman Luba Samri said tens of thousands of Orthodox Christians flocked to the church and surrounding streets in the annexed east Jerusalem’s Old City for the ceremony, held under a heavy police presence.

The pilgrims, mostly from eastern Europe but also Christian Arabs living in the Holy Land, swiftly passed the light on from candle to candle as it emerged from the church.  http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Middle-East/2015/Apr-11/294166-orthodox-christians-mark-holy-fire-rite-in-jerusalem.ashx

April 11, 2015

Israeli police spokeswoman Luba Samri said tens of thousands of Orthodox Christians flocked to the church and surrounding streets in the annexed east Jerusalem’s Old City for the ceremony, held under a heavy police presence.

The pilgrims, mostly from eastern Europe but also Christian Arabs living in the Holy Land, swiftly passed the light on from candle to candle as it emerged from the church.

The flame is also flown out to Greece and other Orthodox countries.

Believers hold that a divine fire from heaven ignites candles held by the Greek Orthodox patriarch, in an annual rite dating back to the 4th century symbolising the resurrection of Christ. http://news.yahoo.com/orthodox-christians-mark-holy-fire-rite-jerusalem-132325255.html

Here is more information about it:

up to content Where and when does the miracle occur?

The ceremony, which awes the souls of Christians, takes place in the Church of the Resurrection in Jerusalem. The date for Pascha is determined anew for every year. It must be a first Sunday after the spring equinox and Jewish Passover. Therefore, most of the time it differs from the date of Catholic and Protestant Easter, which is determined using different criteria. The Holy Fire is the most renowned miracle in the world of Eastern Orthodoxy. It has taken place at the same time, in the same manner, in the same place every single year for centuries. No other miracle is known to occur so regularly and so steadily over time. No other miracle is known to occur so regularly and so steadily over time. It happens in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, the holiest place on earth[2], where Christ was crucified, entombed, and where He finally rose from the dead. …

Typically they wait from the afternoon of Holy Friday in anticipation of the miracle on Holy Saturday. Beginning at around 11:00 in the morning the Christian Arabs chant traditional hymns in a loud voice. These chants date back to the Turkish occupation of Jerusalem in the 13th century, a period in which the Christians were not allowed to chant anywhere but in the churches. “We are the Christians, we have been Christians for centuries, and we shall be forever and ever. Amen!” – they chant at the top of their voices accompanied by the sound of drums. The drummers sit on the shoulders of others who dance vigorously around the Holy Ciborium. But at 1:00 pm the chants fade out, and then there is a silence. A tense silence, charged from the anticipation of the great demonstration of God’s power for all to witness. Shortly thereafter, a delegation from the local authorities elbows its way through the crowd. At the time of the Turkish occupation of Palestine they were Muslim Turks; today they are Israelis. Their function is to represent the Romans at the time of Jesus. The Gospels speak of the Romans that went to seal the tomb of Jesus, so that his disciples would not steal his body and claim he had risen. In the same way the Israeli authorities on this Holy Saturday come and seal the tomb with wax. Before they seal the door, they follow a custom to enter the tomb, and to check for any hidden source of fire, which would make a fraud of the miracle.(http://www.holyfire.org/eng/, viewed 04/11/15)

Irrespective of where Jesus was killed, entombed, and rose from the dead, the Bible does not endorse that the possibility that leaders of the Eastern/Greek Orthodox could be involved in regular true miracles from Him.

Of course, real Christians do not believe that the above ceremony is a God-ordained miracle. The Eastern Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem should have the integrity to tell people the truth about this, but never does. The Bible itself warns about deceivers and forms of deception (2 Timothy 3:13).

Here are a couple of Wikipedia comments related to it:

Holy Fire

The Holy Fire (Greek Ἃγιον Φῶς, “Holy Light“) is described by Christians as a miracle that occurs every year at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem on Holy Saturday, the day preceding Orthodox Easter. It is considered by many to be the longest-attested annual miracle in the Christian world. (Holy Fire. Wikipedia, April 4, 2010).

Some, however, who have been associated with it question it and understand that this is not a miracle of God. Furthermore, I noticed that Wikipedia removed the statement ” It is considered by many to be the longest-attested annual miracle in the Christian world” from the above article. In 2013, Wikipedia had the following statements:

Holy Fire

The Holy Fire (Greek Ἃγιον Φῶς, “Holy Light“) is described by Christians as a miracle that occurs every year at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem on Holy Saturday, the day preceding Orthodox Easter.

Description

Orthodox tradition holds that the Holy Fire is a miracle that happens annually on the day preceding Orthodox Easter, in which a blue light emanates either from the dome of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre or from the slab believed to be the “Stone of Anointing” upon which Jesus’ body was prepared for burial, which eventually forms a column containing a form of fire, from which candles are lit, which are then used to light the candles of the clergy and pilgrims in attendance. Pilgrims and clergy claim that the Holy Fire does not burn them.

The Holy Fire is brought to certain Orthodox countries, such as in Georgia, Greece, Russia, Belarus, Cyprus, Serbia, Montenegro, Bulgaria, Romania, Moldova, Ukraine, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Macedonia, every year by special flights, being received with honors by state leaders at the respective airports.

History

The Holy Fire is first mentioned by the pilgrim Bernard the Monk, in 870 AD.[5] A detailed description of this phenomenon is contained in the travelogue of the Russian hegumen Daniil (Daniel), who was present at the ceremony in 1106 AD…

Criticism

As with all alleged miracles, many question the validity of the Holy Fire, noting, for instance, that cold-handed pilgrims generally withstand the fire for the same very brief periods of time as can be achieved with any fire.

Criticism dates at least to the days of Islamic rule of Jerusalem, but the pilgrims were never stopped, because of the significant revenue they brought to local governments even at the end of the first millennium. When the apparently uninitiated Crusaders took over the Orthodox clergy in charge of the fire, it failed to appear, increasing the skepticism among Western Christians. But feeling the lack of pilgrim revenues, Baldwin I of Jerusalem reinstated the Orthodox priests in charge, and the fire, as well as the stream of revenues, returned.

In 1238, Pope Gregory IX denounced the Holy Fire as a fraud and forbade Franciscans from participating in the ceremony.

The Ottoman traveller, Evliya Celebi, claimed that a hidden zinc jar of naphtha was dripped down a chain by a hidden monk…

Dobrokhotov and other critics, including Russian Orthodox researcher Nikolay Uspensky,Dr. Aleksandr Musin of Sorbonne, and some Old Believers quote excerpts from the diaries of Bishop Porphyrius (Uspensky) (1804–1885) which told that the clergy in Jerusalem knew that the Holy Fire was fraudulent. (Holy Fire. Wikipedia, May 5, 2013)

So, this ‘holy fire’ event supposedly began over eight centuries after the resurrection of Jesus. Hence, it is certainly not an original Christian practice, and I (and many others) do not believe that it is a miracle from God.

Why is there any importance of this at this Church of God News page?

Because the Bible warns that someone will come with signs and lying wonders to mislead the world:

8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. 9 The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, 10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, 12 that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. (2 Thessalonians 2:8-12)

Furthermore, “fire from heaven” will be one of those signs:

11 Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns like a lamb and spoke like a dragon. 12 And he exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence, and causes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. 13 He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. 14 And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived. (Revelation 13:11-15)

By currently believing in “holy fire” many Orthodox are unknowingly setting themselves up to accept the signs and lying wonders that the Bible warns about.  The acceptance of signs and lying wonders over the truth of the Bible is part of  Satan’s Plan. All, including the non-Orthodox, need to understand that signs and wonders are NOT of themselves proof that something is of God, including the annual ritual of “holy fire.”

So, when reports come out about this, please realize that just because fire is shown, does not mean that God caused it.

I should also add that while it is good that unlike many American Catholics and Protestants, the Eastern Orthodox realize that what is called ‘Easter’ is really supposed to be Passover. However, like the Catholics and the Protestants, the Orthodox do not observe Passover like the early Christians did (and the faithful still do) or even when they did (Nisan 14, and the Orthodox realize that this was the original date that many that they claimed to descend from observed).

Easter was NOT celebrated by early Christians. They observed actual Passover which occurs in the evening. Notice that even the Eastern Orthodox realize this:

Pascha is the feast of universal redemption. Our earliest sources for the an­nual celebration of the Christian Pascha come to us from the second century…The feast, however, must have originated in the apostolic period…According to the earliest documents, Pascha is described as a nocturnal celebration…(Calivas, Alkiviadis C. The Origins of Pascha and Great Week – Part I. Holy Cross Orthodox Press, 1992. Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, http://www.goarch.org/ourfaith/ourfaith8504 viewed 11/04/2011)

Yet, they and others do not observe it when or how the early Christians did.

In addition, notice what a respected Protestant scholar reported about the second century:

The most important in this festival was the passover day, the 14th of Nisan…In it they ate unleavened bread, probably like the Jews, eight days through…there is no trace of a yearly festival of the resurrection among them…the Christians of Asia Minor appealed in favor of their passover solemnity on the 14th Nisan to John (Gieseler, Johann Karl Ludwig. A Text-book of Church History. Translated by Samuel Davidson, John Winstanley Hull, Mary A. Robinson. Harper & brothers, 1857, Original from the University of Michigan, Digitized Feb 17, 2006, p. 166).

Notice also:

The first Christians celebrated the death of Jesus with a Pascha meal (eucharist) on the lunar date of the Jewish Passover (note 1 Cor. 5:7-8).

At first there was no annual celebration of the resurrection. Eventually, in the gentile world, the day of resurrection was added to the Pascha festival. That day was Sunday. At the Council of Nicea (325) it was ruled that Easter Sunday would be celebrated on the Sunday immediately following that full moon which came after the vernal equinox. At the same time the Council decided that the vernal equinox would be March 21 in the Julian calendar (Eusebius, Vit. Const. 3.18). (Synder GF. Irish Jesus, Roman Jesus: the formation of early Irish Christianity. Trinity Press International, 2002, p. 183)

While some will make excuses, early Christians did not celebrate an Easter morning resurrection holiday.

Samuele Bacchiocchi noted that the change to Easter-Sunday and to a weekly Sunday was due to persecution (the new Gentile hierarchy he is referring to are Greek bishops in Jerusalem, which took over after the rebellion was crushed):

The actual introduction of Easter-Sunday appears to have occurred earlier in Palestine after Emperor Hadrian ruthlessly crushed the Barkokeba revolt (A.D. 132-135)…

The fact that the Passover controversy arose when Emperor Hadrian adopted new repressive measures against Jewish religious practices suggests that such measures influenced the new Gentile hierarchy to change the date of Passover from Nisan 14 to the following Sunday (Easter-Sunday) in order to show separation and differentiation from the Jews and the Jewish Christians…

A whole body of Against the Jews literature was produced by leading Fathers who defamed the Jews as a people and emptied their religious beliefs and practices of any historical value. Two major causalities of the anti-Jewish campaign were Sabbath and Passover. The Sabbath was changed to Sunday and Passover was transferred to Easter-Sunday.

Scholars usually recognize the anti-Judaic motivation for the repudiation of the Jewish reckoning of Passover and adoption of Easter-Sunday instead. Joachim Jeremias attributes such a development to “the inclination to break away from Judaism.” In a similar vein, J.B. Lightfoot explains that Rome and Alexandria adopted Easter-Sunday to avoid “even the semblance of Judaism” (Bacchiocchi S. God’s Festival in Scripture and History. Biblical Perspectives. Befriend Springs (MI), 1995, pp. 101,102,103).

Other compromises also occurred, which is why the date is named in English after the Babylonian fertility goddess Ishtar.

Anyway, God DID NOT PROVIDE HOLY FIRE TODAY.  Those who believe that He did are deceived.  Partially, because of that deception, they accept a compromised religion that IS NOT the “the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 3).

Of course, even if you are not Eastern Orthodox, you need to consider whether or not you believe and practice the original faith that is laid out in the Bible (see Continuing History of the Church of God), and even if you somewhat do, if you are supporting the truest Christian church (see Where is the True Christian Church Today?).

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

Satan’s Plan Does Satan have a plan? What is it? Has it already been successful? Will it be successful in the future? Here are links to a two-part sermon series: What are Some of the Parts of Satan’s Plan? and Satan’s Plan is More Dramatic than Many Realize.
Passover and the Early Church Did the early Christians observe Passover? What did Jesus and Paul teach? Why did Jesus die for our sins? There is also a detailed YouTube video available titled History of the Christian Passover.
Did Early Christians Celebrate Easter? If not, when did this happen? Where did Easter come from? What do scholars and the Bible reveal? Here is a link to a video titled Why Easter?
Two Horned Beast of Revelation and 666 Who is 666? This article explains how the CCOG views this, and compares this to Ellen White.
Some Similarities and Differences Between the Orthodox Church and the Continuing Church of God Both groups claim to be the original church, but both groups have differing ways to claim it. Both groups have some amazing similarities and some major differences. Do you know what they are?
Some Doctrines of Antichrist Are there any doctrines taught outside the Churches of God which can be considered as doctrines of antichrist? This article suggests at least three. It also provides information on 666 and the identity of “the false prophet.” Plus it shows that several Catholic writers seem to warn about an ecumenical antipope that will support heresy.
Why Should American Catholics Fear Unity with the Orthodox? Are the current ecumenical meetings a good thing or will they result in disaster? Is doctrinal compromise good? Here is a link to a related video Should you be concerned about the ecumenical movement?
Beware: Protestants Going Towards Ecumenical Destruction! What is going on in the Protestant world? Are Protestants turning back to their ‘mother church’ in Rome? Does the Bible warn about this? What are Catholic plans and prophecies related to this? Is Protestantism doomed? There is also a video: Charismatic Kenneth Copeland and Anglican Tony Palmer: Protestants Beware!
Orthodox Must Reject Unity with the Roman Catholics Unity between these groups will put them in position to be part of the final end time Babylon that the Bible warns against as well as require improper compromise.
Where is the True Christian Church Today? This free online pdf booklet answers that question and includes 18 proofs, clues, and signs to identify the true vs. false Christian church. Plus 7 proofs, clues, and signs to help identify Laodicean churches. A related sermon is also available: Where is the True Christian Church? Here is a link to the booklet in the Spanish language: ¿Dónde está la verdadera Iglesia cristiana de hoy?
Continuing History of the Church of God This pdf booklet is a historical overview of the true Church of God and some of its main opponents from c. 31 A.D. to 2014. Two related sermon links would include Continuing History of the Church of God: c. 31 to c. 300 A.D. and Continuing History of the Church of God: 4th-16th Centuries. In Spanish: Marque aquí para ver el pdf folleto: Continuación de la Historia de la Iglesia de Dios.

Bible Millionaire Fun

Friday, April 10th, 2015

Game Seat

By COGWriter

You have two holy days in a row.

Are you interested in a fun way to add to your knowledge of the Bible?

A very popular link at the COGwriter website is to the Who Wants to be a Biblical Millionaire? quiz, developed by Michael Thiel.

It is an interesting game and Michael is always adding more questions to it. The game has over 1,100 different questions. Think of it as an entertaining way to assist your doctrinal memory.

While I believe that this and other quizzes at the site help people better learn the Bible, the major reason I have quizzes, animations, photos, and even news, as opposed to only doctrinal articles, is to attempt to better follow the Apostle Paul’s example which was:

22 I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. 23 Now this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I may be partaker of it with you (1 Corinthians 9:22-23).

Besides, the Bible teaches that there is a “time for every purpose under heaven” (Eccl 3:1). Hence, there are new items, games, and other materials than simply doctrinal and prophetic ones at the www.cogwriter.com website.

Michael’s Free Bible Quizzes and Public Domain Animations.

Self Grading Bible Quiz 15 questions and a report card when you finish.
The Good Samaritan A public domain claymation for younger people.
Paul in Damascus Not a quiz, but a Lego-animation.
John 21 Not a quiz, but (other than a Lego suggesting a long-haired Jesus) a biblical story for young people.
David vs. Goliath A higher level animation for older young people.
Solomon’s Temple This is a a 5 minute animated film that shows one artist’s understanding of the details about Solomon’s temple.
Bible Crossword Puzzle
Who Wants to be a Biblical Millionaire?
A sophisticated quiz.
Pentecost Quiz This is a Pentecost quiz based upon the Old and New Testaments in the Bible.
The Antichrist Quiz Do you really know much about the Antichrist?
Michael’s Feasts and Fasts Quiz 15 questions, amusing wrong answer screens.
The Ten Commandments Quiz Developed by my son Michael.
Michael’s Day of Atonement Quiz Another free on-line Bible quiz by my son Michael.
Bible Hangman Michael’s most interactive Bible game to date. Another one of his free online Bible games.

Orthodox Pascha is Sunday

Thursday, April 9th, 2015


Site of Calvary?

COGwriter

The Eastern Orthodox have a somewhat different religious calendar than the Roman Catholics and their descended groups. This Sunday will be their biggest one of the year:

The Eastern Orthodox Celebrate the Resurrection of Christ
The Phoenix,

Many Christians in the West have no idea that the Eastern Orthodox Church exists…This year Orthodox Christians celebrate Easter on Sunday…

Not Easter, but Pascha

Chances are you will not actually hear the word “Easter” in Orthodox churches. The Orthodox will almost always use the word Pascha for the feast of the resurrection of Christ, as we have since about the time of the Lord’s ascension. “Pascha” is the Greek transliteration of Pesach, which is the Hebrew word for Passover. From apostolic times the Orthodox celebration of the resurrection has been framed within the story of the Passover in Exodus.

This is big. Really, really big

There are 12 major feasts celebrating Christ in the Orthodox year — and Pascha is not among them! Pascha is too big. Pascha is the Feast of Feasts! It gives meaning to everything else we do and believe. So like the woman in the Gospel pouring costly oil on the Lord’s feet, we spare nothing in our love and response to Christ’s resurrection.

We…read aloud the Gospel in many languages, our hearts radiant in the presence of the risen Lord.

Then there is the fellowship meal after the paschal services, which often continues into dawn — tables laden with food and drink, red-dyed eggs and decorated bread, and everyone in bright (or white) festive clothing. No other feast of the Church comes anywhere close to the extravagant, colorful and loud celebration of Pascha.

Pascha, a New Passover

The original Passover is the prophecy for the true Passover, which Christ would accomplish through His death and resurrection on the third day. This is why Christ died during the Passover, and why He celebrated the Passover supper with His disciples. Christ was saying, basically, that this event is only a prophecy, a model of the event that I am now bringing to reality before you. http://www.phoenixvillenews.com/articles/2009/04/17/life/srv0000005118804.txt

While the Orthodox are correct that Passover was not last Sunday. They seem to have forgotten that they originally kept Passover on the 14th.

They also seemed to forget that colored eggs are not part of Jesus’ original Passover.

If the Orthodox would truly go back to the original practices of the Bible, they could be the church that they want to tell others that they are.

Early Christians did not keep Easter.  And when they kept the Passover, it was after sunset on the 14th of Nisan (which was Thursday evening, April 2, 2015).

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

Did Early Christians Celebrate Easter? If not, when did this happen? Where did Easter come from? What do scholars and the Bible reveal? Here is a link to a video titled Why Easter?
Passover and the Early Church Did the early Christians observe Passover? What did Jesus and Paul teach? Why did Jesus die for our sins? There is also a detailed YouTube video available titled History of the Christian Passover.
The Passover Plot What was the first Passover plot? Which plots have Islam and the Greco-Roman faiths perpetuated about Passover? A sermon video of related interest is The Passover Plots, Including Easter.
Melito’s Homily on the Passover This is one of the earliest Christian writings about the Passover. This also includes what Apollinaris wrote on the Passover as well. Here is a related sermon, also titled Melito’s Homily on the Passover.
TPM: Passover on the 14th or 15th? While the real COG observes Passover on the 14th, some observe it on the 15th. Why is the 14th correct? A related sermon is titled Is Passover on the 14th or 15th for Christians?
Some Similarities and Differences Between the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Continuing Church of God Both groups claim to be the original church, but both groups have differing ways to claim it. Both groups have some amazing similarities and some major differences. Do you know what they are?
Where is the True Christian Church Today? This free online pdf booklet answers that question and includes 18 proofs, clues, and signs to identify the true vs. false Christian church. Plus 7 proofs, clues, and signs to help identify Laodicean churches. A related sermon is also available: Where is the True Christian Church? Here is a link to the booklet in the Spanish language: ¿Dónde está la verdadera Iglesia cristiana de hoy?
Continuing History of the Church of God This pdf booklet is a historical overview of the true Church of God and some of its main opponents from c. 31 A.D. to 2014. Two related sermon links would include Continuing History of the Church of God: c. 31 to c. 300 A.D. and Continuing History of the Church of God: 4th-16th Centuries. In Spanish: Marque aquí para ver el pdf folleto: Continuación de la Historia de la Iglesia de Dios.

‘The Month of the Holy Eucharist’

Wednesday, April 8th, 2015


Eucharist Host in a Monstrance

COGwriter

April is called ‘the Month of the Holy Eucharist” by certain Catholics.

Did early Christians use a round eucharistic host?

A careful comparison of what is taught in the Bible and the Catechism of the Catholic Church along with eucharistic practices should make this clear to any truly interested in the truth.

Let’s first start out with two translations of a quote from the Apostle Paul:

1 Be ye followers of me, as I also am of Christ. (1 Corinthians 11:1, Douay-Rheims)

1 Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ. (1 Corinthians 11:1, NKJV)

The Apostle Paul is teaching that Christians are to follow or imitate him as he imitates Christ (the Greek word translated as follow/imitate above is mimetes; the English word mimic comes from it). Thus, all should be careful to carefully follow Jesus and the Apostle Paul in this regard.

Notice what Jesus said:

6 He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked. (1 John 2:6)

Article 3, under the Seven Sacraments of the Church in the Catechism of the Catholic Church discusses the eucharist. Section II asks and answers the question, What is this Sacrament Called? Several names are listed, including “The Breaking of Bread” (#1329).

It also states the following:

1339 Jesus choose the time of the Passover…And he took bread, and when he had given thanks he broke it and gave it to them…(Catechism of the Catholic Church. Imprimatur Potest +Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger. Doubleday, NY 1995, p. 373)

Now the above is scriptural. Here are some related scriptures:

19 And the disciples did as Jesus appointed to them, and they prepared the pasch.

26 And whilst they were at supper, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and broke: and gave to his disciples, and said: Take ye, and eat. This is my body. (Matthew 26:19,26 Douay-Rheims)

22 And whilst they were eating, Jesus took bread; and blessing, broke, and gave to them, and said: Take ye. This is my body. (Mark 14:22, Douay-Rheims)

19 And taking bread, he gave thanks, and brake; and gave to them, saying: This is my body, which is given for you. Do this for a commemoration of me. (Luke 22:19, Douay-Rheims)

Notice, it is very clear that Jesus BROKE the bread on Passover (Pasch means Passover).

The Apostle Paul confirmed that it was the practice of the early Christians to break bread:

16 The chalice of benediction, which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ ? And the bread, which we break, is it not the partaking of the body of the Lord? (1 Corinthians 10:16, Douay-Rheims).

23 For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus, the same night in which he was betrayed, took bread.

24 And giving thanks, broke, and said: Take ye, and eat: this is my body, which shall be delivered for you: this do for the commemoration of me. (1 Corinthians 11:23-24, Douay-Rheims)

The Apostle Paul followed Jesus’ practice and broke bread. Furthermore, notice what The Catholic Encyclopedia teaches in its article “Host”:

…the first Christians…simply used the bread that served as food. It seems that the form differed but little from what it is in our day. The loaves discovered in an oven of a bakery at Pompeii weighed about a pound each. One of these, being perfectly preserved, measured about seven inches in diameter and was creased with seven ridges which facilitated the breaking of the loaf without the aid of a knife. (Leclercq, Henri. “Host.” The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 7. Nihil Obstat. June 1, 1910. Remy Lafort, S.T.D., Censor. Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1910. 28 Feb. 2011 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07489d.htm>)

Notice the article basically says that the practice of the first Christians, which is consistent with the Bible, was to use normal loaves of bread that resemble what is still in use today. And that it was broken. (The article never says where the round host actually came from, other than it was first mentioned in writing in the fourth century by Epiphanius and that earlier paintings in catacombs and bas-reliefs showed something like that. But I should state that the oldest early painting in a catacomb I am aware of has a woman, Priscilla, presiding over the ceremony, so the Church of Rome may wish to be careful about relying on that as they do not allow women to do that. Hence, the earliest picture of the eucharist host did not come from what is practiced in today’s Roman Catholicism–so the question from whence the Catholics adopted it remains.)

Thus, to have a Passover/eucharistic ceremony where they bread is not broken is certainly not imitating Jesus, the Apostle Paul, nor the early Christians. It is a change that the Church of Rome must have gotten outside of the Bible.

Yet, in the eucharistic ceremonies in the Catholic Church, the bread is not broken. Instead, it is a round host that the Catechism of the Catholic Church says can/should be worshipped and adored (CCC #1378, p. 385). Yet, there is no indication that the early Christians or the apostles did anything like that.

They basically taught that it was to be eaten.

Worshipers of sun-gods worshiped round symbols. Early Christians did not.

As far as the word “host”, The Catholic Encyclopedia teaches:

The bread destined to receive Eucharistic Consecration is commonly called the host , and though this term may likewise be applied to the bread and wine of the Sacrifice , it is more especially reserved to the bread.

According to Ovid the word comes from hostis, enemy: “Hostibus a domitis hostia nomen habet”, because the ancients offered their vanquished enemies as victims to the gods. However, it is possible that hostia is derived from hostire, to strike, as found in Pacuvius. (Leclercq, Henri. “Host.”)

The word “host” (or derivatives) do not appear to be a direct translation of any of the original Hebrew or Greek that the Bible was actually written in. Hence, it does not seem to be a biblical term, but instead may have pagan ties according to certain Catholic researchers. Does anyone really think that Jesus wanted to be considered the “host” of pagan militaristic rituals?

Since it did not come from the Bible, the Eucharistic Host is not holy.

Perhaps it should also be mentioned that some Roman Catholic priests, like Nicholas Gruner and Paul Kramer have raised concerns about eucharistic ceremonies in languages other than Latin. Notice the following:

Latin Mass…The truth is — in English, Italian, and Spanish, among others — the vernacular translations of the consecration of the wine makes it of doubtful validity…as has been demonstrated by Father Paul Kramer in his book The Suicide of Altering the Faith in Liturgy (Gruner N. Is Antichrist Coming Next? The Fatima Crusader, 96, Autumn 2010, p. 10).

Now, in case everyone is unaware of this, it should be pointed out that the original apostles spoke Greek (cf. Acts 21:37-39) and other languages, but there is no indication that any of them used Latin in any early Christian ceremony (and even if they did, it certainly was not a widespread, or universal, practice). Even Tertullian, the so-called “father of Latin theology” did not begin to write until around 190 A.D. Latin mass is a CHANGE. Those who are true traditionalists would realize that the original and early Passover services were not done in Latin and there is no valid reason to insist on Latin today. Those who insist on Latin and those who use a round host are absolutely altering the liturgy of the faith of the original Christians.

Cannot those who claim to be Catholic traditionalists see this?

Similarities Between Egyptian and Roman Eucharistic Practices

It has been reported that there were many similarities between ancient pagan Egyptian practices and the Roman eucharist:

The Egyptians celebrated ten great mysteries on ten different nights of the year. The first was the night of the evening meal (literally the last supper), and the laying of offerings on the altar…

The altar or communion-table thus provisioned was the coffin lid. This also was continued in the ritual of Rome, for it is a fact that the earliest Christian altar was a coffin. According to Blunt’s Dictionary of Doctrinal and Historical Theology (p. 16), this was a hollow chest, on the lid or mensa of which the eucharist was celebrated. This, as Egyptian, was the coffin of Osiris that constituted the altar on which the provisions were laid in Sekhem for the eucharistic meal. Hence the resurrection is described as “dawn upon the coffin of Osiris.” Therefore he rose in spirit from the mummy in the coffin, beneath the lid which constituted the table. This was the body supposed to be eaten as the eucharist, which was represented by the provisions that were laid upon the altar for the sacramental meal…The first of the Osirian mysteries is the primary Christian sacrament. “Provisioning the altar ” was continued by the Church of Rome. “The mysteries laid upon the altar” which preceded ” the communion of the body and blood of Christ ” were then eaten in the eucharistic meal (Neale, Rev. J. M., The Liturgies, Introd., p. 33). Thus we see in the camera obscura that the provisions laid on the altar or table represented the flesh and blood of the victim about to be eaten sacramentally. The night of the things that were laid upon the altar is the night of the great sacrifice, with Osiris as the victim. The things laid on the altar for the evening meal represented the body and blood of the Lord. These, as the bread and wine, or flesh and beer, were transelementecl or transubstantiated by the descent of Ra the holy spirit, which quickened and transformed the mummy Osiris into the risen sahu, the unleavened bread into the leavened, the water into wine. Osiris, the sacrifice, was the giver of himself as “the food which never perishes” (Rit, ch. 89).

The Christian liturgies are reckoned to be the “most pure sources of eucharistical doctrine.” And liturgy appears to have been the groundwork of the Egyptian ritual. It is said by one of the priests (Rit., ch. i), “I am he who reciteth the liturgies of the soul who is lord of Tattu “—that is, of Osiris who establishes a soul for ever in conjunction with Ra the holy spirit in the mysteries of Amenta. In one character Osiris was eaten as the Bull of Eternity, who gave his flesh and blood as sustenance for humanity, and who was the divine providence as the provider of food. (Massey G. Ancient Egypt, the light of the world: a work of reclamation and restitution in twelve books, Volume 1. T. F. Unwin, 1907. Original from Princeton University, Digitized Mar 19, 2008, pp. 220-221)

A more recent author reported, somewhat “tongue-in-cheek”:

Of course, average Catholics have no idea their beloved Eucharist is nothing more than an updated version of an ancient Babylonian occult practice. When this religion spread to Egypt, the Egyptians worshipped the sun god, Osiris, and the priests claimed “to have magical powers which enabled [the priests] to change the great Sun God, Osiris, into a wafer.” Because the Eucharist is based upon the ancient worship of the sun, the host is made into the shape of a circle—the shape of the sun…Alberto warns that Catholics are also unaware that the initials on their hosts, IHS, really stand for the Egyptian gods Isis, Hoeb, and Seb. This was the origin of the Catholic practice of the Eucharist, the central act of worship in Roman Catholicism. ..

As this religious system was forming, many Christians realized the real occult nature of the Catholic Church and rejected it. They fled into the hills and took the true copies of the Scriptures with them. When they were caught, they were given the choice to convert or be killed. This is the origin of such groups as the Waldneses and Anabaptists. (Gonzalez D. Steps of Grace. Dog Ear Publishing, 2010, p. 39)

Now, some of the above seems to be his former belief and speculative (and understand that not all who were called Waldneses or Anabaptists were true Christians). Yet it is clear that the round host most certainly did not come from the Bible nor the earliest faithful Christians.

Some may argue that it matters not what ancient pagans did to worship their gods. But notice what the Bible teaches:

2 Destroy all the places in which the nations, that you shall possess, worshipped their gods upon high mountains, and hills, and under every shady tree: 3 Overthrow their altars, and break down their statues, burn their groves with fire, and break their idols in pieces: destroy their names out of those places. 4 You shall not do so to the Lord your God (Deuteronomy 12:2-4, Douay-Rheims)

29 When the Lord thy God shall have destroyed before thy face the nations, which then shalt go in to possess, and when thou shalt possess them, and dwell in their land: 30 Beware lest thou imitate them, after they are destroyed at thy coming in, and lest thou seek after their ceremonies, saying: As these nations have worshipped their gods, so will I also worship. 31 Thou shalt not do in like manner to the Lord thy God. For they have done to their gods all the abominations which the Lord abhorreth (Deuteronomy 12:29-31, Douay-Rheims).

So, God does not want altars like the pagans had to be used to worship Him. Nor does He want their practices continued.

And while some have argued that God allowed the pagans to have practices that they did so that they could later accept Christ, the reality is that the early Christians did not have a round eucharistic host that was consecrated over an altar. There is no justification in scripture nor in the earliest traditions of the Christian church for getting away from the practices of Jesus and Paul in this area.

As far as origin of the initials IHS, The Catholic Encyclopedia offers an alternative explanation:

IHS

A monogram of the name of Jesus Christ. From the third century the names of our Saviour are sometimes shortened, particularly in Christian inscriptions (IH and XP, for Jesus and Christus). In the next century the “sigla” (chi-rho) occurs not only as an abbreviation but also as a symbol . From the beginning, however, in Christian inscriptions the nomina sacra, or names of Jesus Christ, were shortened by contraction, thus IC and XC or IHS and XPS for Iesous Christos. These Greek monograms continued to be used in Latin during the Middle Ages. Eventually the right meaning was lost, and erroneous interpretation of IHS led to the faulty orthography “Jhesus”… Towards the close of the Middle Ages IHS became a symbol , quite like the chi-rho in the Constantinian period. (Maere, René. “IHS.” The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 7. Nihil Obstat. June 1, 1910. Remy Lafort, S.T.D., Censor. Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York. Robert Appleton Company, 1910. 28 Feb. 2011 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07649a.htm>)

The familiar monogram I H S was first popularized by St. Bernardine of Siena in the early fifteenth century (Hassett, Maurice. “Monogram of Christ.” The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 10. Nihil Obstat. October 1, 1911. Remy Lafort, S.T.D., Censor. Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York. Robert Appleton Company, 1911. 28 Feb. 2011 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/10488a.htm>).

Notice the following from another Catholic author (bolding mine):

SAINT BERNADINE OF SIENA 1380-1444…He is especially remembered for his zeal…and he popularized, with the help of St. John Capistrano, a symbol representing the Holy Name. The Gothic letters for the name of Jesus, “IHS,” were set in a blazing sun to whose tongues of fire and spreading rays he attributed mystical significance. For a time the Saint was denounced as a heretic and the symbol regarded as idolatrous…(Cruz JC. The Incorruptibles. Nihil Obstat Henry C. Bezon, November 11, 1974. Imprimatur +Philip M. Hannan, Archbishop of New Orleans, November 19, 1974. TAN Books 1977, p. 127)

IHS…{an} innovation over five hundred years ago. (Cruz, p. 127)

Notice that the IHS and the use of the sun as a symbols were innovations and that the promoter was properly condemned as a heretic when he initially promoted them. Innovations like that were NOT part of the earliest tradition of the Christian church and have pagan elements.

So, the Catholics are not truly clear where IHS came from, they suggest that IHS appeared in Catholicism no early than the fourth century, and that for centuries their church did not know the meaning of the abbreviation, it did not become popular until much later, and the one who popularized was denounced as a heretic promoting idolatry. This, of course, is not proof that IHS did or did not come from Egypt. Yet, the lack of knowing where IHS came from supports the possibility that it likely came from outside of Christianity.

The use of broken bread, without IHS, is still observed by faithful groups in the 21st century like the Continuing Church of God.

Do you follow the practices of the early faithful Christians?

Some articles to assist in your studies may include:

Marcus, the Marcosians, & Mithraism: Developers of the Eucharist? Marcus was a second century heretic condemned for having a ceremony similar to one still practiced by many who profess Christ. Might he also be in the apostolic succession list of the Orthodox Church of Alexandria? Where did IHS and the host come from?
What Did the Early Church Teach About Idols and Icons? Did Catholic and Orthodox “saints” endorse or condemn idols and icons for Christians?
What Do Roman Catholic Scholars Actually Teach About Early Church History? Although most believe that the Roman Catholic Church history teaches an unbroken line of succession of bishops beginning with Peter, with stories about most of them, Roman Catholic scholars know the truth of this matter. This eye-opening article is a must-read for any who really wants to know what Roman Catholic history actually admits about the early church.
Military Service and the Churches of God: Do Real Christians Participate in Carnal Warfare? Here are current and historical perspectives on a matter which show the beliefs of the true church on military participation. Is war proper for Christians?
Nazarene Christianity: Were the Original Christians Nazarenes? Should Christians be Nazarenes today? What were the practices of the Nazarenes.
Location of the Early Church: Another Look at Ephesus, Smyrna, and Rome What actually happened to the primitive Church? And did the Bible tell about this in advance?
Apostolic Succession What really happened? Did structure and beliefs change? Are many of the widely-held current understandings of this even possible? Did you know that Catholic scholars really do not believe that several of the claimed “apostolic sees” of the Orthodox have apostolic succession–despite the fact that the current pontiff himself seems to wish to ignore this view? Is there actually a true church that has ties to any of the apostles that is not part of the Catholic or Orthodox churches? Read this article if you truly are interested in the truth on this matter!
Early Church History: Who Were the Two Major Groups Professed Christ in the Second and Third Centuries? Did you know that many in the second and third centuries felt that there were two major, and separate, professing Christian groups in the second century, but that those in the majority churches tend to now blend the groups together and claim “saints” from both? “Saints” that condemn some of their current beliefs. Who are the two groups?
Which Is Faithful: The Roman Catholic Church or the Continuing Church of God? Do you know that both groups shared a lot of the earliest teachings? Do you know which church changed? Do you know which group is most faithful to the teachings of the apostolic church? Which group best represents true Christianity? This documented article answers those questions.
Do You Practice Mithraism? Many practices and doctrines that mainstream so-called Christian groups have are the same or similar to those of the sun-god Mithras. December 25th was celebrated as his birthday. Do you follow Mithraism combined with the Bible or original Christianity? A sermon video from Vatican City is titled Church of Rome, Mithras, and Isis?
Where is the True Christian Church Today? This free online pdf booklet answers that question and includes 18 proofs, clues, and signs to identify the true vs. false Christian church. Plus 7 proofs, clues, and signs to help identify Laodicean churches. A related sermon is also available: Where is the True Christian Church? Here is a link to the booklet in the Spanish language: ¿Dónde está la verdadera Iglesia cristiana de hoy?
Continuing History of the Church of God This pdf booklet is a historical overview of the true Church of God and some of its main opponents from c. 31 A.D. to 2014. Two related sermon links would include Continuing History of the Church of God: c. 31 to c. 300 A.D. and Continuing History of the Church of God: 4th-16th Centuries. In Spanish: Marque aquí para ver el pdf folleto: Continuación de la Historia de la Iglesia de Dios.

The History of Early Christianity Are you aware that what most people believe is not what truly happened to the true Christian church? Do you know where the early church was based? Do you know what were the doctrines of the early church? Is your faith really based upon the truth or compromise?

More are wondering if a particular red heifer is prophetic

Monday, April 6th, 2015


Red Angus Heifer

COGwriter

Two different readers send links related to a red heifer in the USA:

A Passover Sign form God?

April 5, 2015

A possible parah adumah, a full red heifer, is attracting attention across the Jewish world as the cow, located on a small farm outside of Lakewood, NJ, is getting set to reach its second birthday, Hamodia reported.

An extremely rare phenomenon, according to Jewish law, the cow would only become permissible for use after its second birthday, in which it will be fully inspected for any blemishes, included hairs that are not red.

A red heifer is necessary to make ash needed for the ritual purification process to carry out services in the Jewish Temple.

“Somebody from Brooklyn called and offered me one million dollars for her, but I told him that she’s not for sale. This is a gift from Hashem (God),” owner Herbert Celler told the newspaper. “When he asked what I’m going to do with her, I told him that I’m going to be the first in line when Moshaich (the Messiah) comes.”

According to Celler, the cow was born on April 2, 2013 during Passover. The farmer explained that he has been “extremely vigilant” in making sure that the cow does not engage in any work or sustaining any blemishes, which may disqualify the cow according to Jewish law.  http://www.breakingisraelnews.com/35291/a-passover-sign-from-god-opinion/

A fully red cow on a small farm outside Lakewood, New Jersey is attracting worldwide attention in orthodox Jewish circles and various movements with a Messianic or “End of Days” bent. Let me explain why. …

After the Biblical Exodus, the Tabernacle that Moses built served the Israelites for 40 years in the Sinai desert. Then there were two Temples that stood in Jerusalem for about a thousand years, from the 10th century BCE until the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 CE. Since then, there has been no Temple and, as far as we know, no kosher red cow – until now.Many believe that kosher red cows will once again appear when the Temple in Jerusalem – the House of God – is about to be rebuilt. The ingathering of the Jewish people and the creation of the State of Israel in 1948 has been seen by believers as signs of the impending arrival of the Messiah, the rebuilding of the Temple and the inauguration of the “Kingdom of God” – a qualitatively new phase in human history. For believers, the sudden appearance of a red heifer could be interpreted as a sign of the impending Messianic age.

And now it seems that such a red heifer – two years old and unblemished – has appeared in Howell, New Jersey. A Passover sign from God? | Simcha Jacobovici | The Blogs | The Times of Israel http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/a-passover-sign-from-god/#ixzz3WXnoc3sX

It is possible that Jews will decide that this could be the red heifer many have wondered about.

Here is what the Bible says about a red heifer:

1 Now the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, 2 “This is the ordinance of the law which the Lord has commanded, saying: ‘Speak to the children of Israel, that they bring you a red heifer without blemish, in which there is no defect and on which a yoke has never come. 3 You shall give it to Eleazar the priest, that he may take it outside the camp, and it shall be slaughtered before him; 4 and Eleazar the priest shall take some of its blood with his finger, and sprinkle some of its blood seven times directly in front of the tabernacle of meeting. 5 Then the heifer shall be burned in his sight: its hide, its flesh, its blood, and its offal shall be burned. 6 And the priest shall take cedar wood and hyssop and scarlet, and cast them into the midst of the fire burning the heifer. 7 Then the priest shall wash his clothes, he shall bathe in water, and afterward he shall come into the camp; the priest shall be unclean until evening. 8 And the one who burns it shall wash his clothes in water, bathe in water, and shall be unclean until evening. 9 Then a man who is clean shall gather up the ashes of the heifer, and store them outside the camp in a clean place; and they shall be kept for the congregation of the children of Israel for the water of purification; it is for purifying from sin. 10 And the one who gathers the ashes of the heifer shall wash his clothes, and be unclean until evening. It shall be a statute forever to the children of Israel and to the stranger who dwells among them. (Numbers 19:1-10)

Jews have interpreted this to mean that another red heifer needs to be sacrificed for sacrifices to be resumed or for the Messiah to return. While that is not directly stated above, it could be implied from that one is again needed. And if those who want to sacrifice will not do so until they have a red heifer, then in that respect a red heifer is important.

Some Jews believe that the Books of Daniel and Isaiah tell about a future red heifer, despite the fact that they do not specify one. Notice the following passages that are sometimes cited starting with those in Daniel:

9 And he said, “Go your way, Daniel, for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. 10 Many shall be purified, made white, and refined, but the wicked shall do wickedly; and none of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand.

11 “And from the time that the daily sacrifice is taken away, and the abomination of desolation is set up, there shall be one thousand two hundred and ninety days. 12 Blessed is he who waits, and comes to the one thousand three hundred and thirty-five days. (Daniel 12:9-12)

While certain Jews tie the purification in verse 10 to the removal of sacrifices in verse 11, the Bible does not tie this in with a red heifer. Some Jews then tie in the following from Isaiah:

18 “Come now, and let us reason together,”
Says the Lord,
“Though your sins are like scarlet,
They shall be as white as snow;
Though they are red like crimson,
They shall be as wool. (Isaiah 1:18)

Some Jews tie the burning of scarlet in Numbers 9:6 to the above. Yet, while sins can be as scarlet, the Bible is not saying that this is related to a red heifer. It is a call from God to repent. And Christians do this without a red heifer (Acts 2:38) as it is not possible that the blood of bulls or goats to take away sins (Hebrews 10:4). Jesus takes away sins (John 1:36).

The Jews have various traditions about the red heifer. In the Mishnah (Parah 3.5) it was claimed that “Moses prepared the first, Ezra prepared the second, and five were prepared after Ezra.”

So, according to one tradition, supposedly there have been only nine proper prepared ones and the tenth one is what is needed.

Notice some of what the Temple Institute teaches about it:

But in truth, the fate of the entire world depends on the red heifer. For G-d has ordained that its ashes alone are the single missing ingredient for the reinstatement of Biblical purity – and thereafter, the rebuilding of the Holy Temple…

The Divine ordinance of the heifer, beyond the grasp of man’s frail intellect, with all the details of its preparation and ceremony, calls out to Israel and to all who seek to cling to the living word of the G-d of Israel: “Purify yourselves! Shake off your despair! Death is an illusion!” Thus it is written, “…but all of you who cling to the Lord your G-d…you are all alive today” (Deut. 4:4)…

G-d uses many devices to bring His children back to Him. … the rabbis observed: “And if one should wonder, how could a man turn his life around, and come close to G-d on account of a heifer?! Do not wonder: For it is through the heifer that all of Israel becomes pure. https://www.templeinstitute.org/red_heifer/introduction.htm

The Mishna teaches that up until the destruction of the Second Temple, ashes had been prepared from a total of only nine red heifers. The very first red heifer was processed by Moses himself – as the verse states, “… have them bring you a red heifer.” The second was done by the prophet Ezra in the days of the First Temple, and during the entire era of the Second Temple only seven more heifers were used for ashes. This was enough to provide for the nation’s needs for purification throughout all those years.

The names of all the High Priests who prepared those seven heifers during Second Temple times are recorded by the Mishna: Simon the Just and Yochanan each made two; El’yhoeini ben Hakof, Chanamel HaMitzri and Yishmael ben Pi’avi processed one heifer each. Thus, from the time that Moses received the commandment of the red heifer from the Holy One, blessed be He, until the destruction of the Second Temple, purifying ashes had been produced by the hands of these great leaders from a total of nine red heifers.

The Tenth Red Heifer Will be Prepared by the Messiah

In recounting this historical record in his commentary to the Mishna, the great Maimonides ends with the enigmatic statement: “… and the tenth red heifer will be accomplished by the king, the Messiah; may he be revealed speedily, Amen, May it be God’s will.

With this amazing statement, Maimonides recounts an ancient tradition – that the tenth red heifer is associated with the Messianic era. Does this perhaps mean that the appearance of a red heifer in these waning end times is an indication, a forerunner of the appearance of the Messiah himself, who will officiate at its preparation?

If there has been no red heifer for the past 2,000 years, perhaps it is because the time was not right; Israel was far from being ready. But now… what could it mean for the times we live in, to have the means for purification so close at hand? With the words of Maimonides in mind, we cannot help but wonder and pray: If there are now red heifers… is ours the era that will need them? https://www.templeinstitute.org/red_heifer/tenth_red_heifer.htm

Some believe that the tenth red heifer came prior to the destruction of the last temple. Whether it did or not, the Bible simply does not mention ten red heifers.

Some have wondered if the abomination of desolation Jesus mentioned in Matthew 24:15 that Daniel taught spoke of is the sacrificing of the next agreed upon Jewish red heifer. Let me simply state that no it is not. That abomination has to do more with the final coming Beast of the Sea of Revelation 13 and not a sacrifice of the Jews.

Some Jews, like those affiliated with the Temple Institute, want to resume animal sacrifices and believe having a red heifer is a sign that the time is right. An agreed upon red heifer may increase pressure on the nation of Israel to allow such sacrifices–though it may not happen until the deal of Daniel 9:27 is fulfilled (see also The ‘Peace Deal’ of Daniel 9:27).

Many evangelical prophecy watchers seem to believe that a third Jewish Temple needs to be rebuilt in Jerusalem in the Temple Mount area near the Dome of the Rock for many end time prophecies to come to pass.

That belief is in error. An employee of the Temple Institute told me personally that his group did not believe that they needed a rebuilt Jewish Temple to resume animal sacrifices. He basically said is that all they need is an altar, which they have, and permission for the Israeli government, which they expect will happen some day. Years earlier, a representative of the ‘reconstituted Sanhedrin’ emailed me and said the same thing (see Why is a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem Not Required?).

There have been a few claimed red heifers over the past decade or two, but supposedly they were not sufficiently blemish-free. Notice the following:

The Temple Institute … thought to have identified two candidates, one in 1997 and another in 2002.[7] The Temple Institute had initially declared both kosher, but later found each to be unsuitable. During a March 2010 radio interview a Temple Institute representative claimed that there is now “definitely a kosher red heifer here in Israel.” (Red Heifer. Wikipedia, viewed 06/27/14)

So, now apparently another is being watched.

It is my belief is that once there is permission to start regular sacrifices, that whichever red heifer may be available then will be considered to be the right and acceptable one (if it was not so before hand).

Temple Not Required For Jewish Sacrifices

As far as a temple goes, it should also be noted that many doubt whether or not the claimed Temple Mount is truly the location of the last Jewish temple. Furthermore, many of the stones from that temple were moved to the Western Hill in Jerusalem, commonly referred to as Mount Zion (see Church of God on Jerusalem’s Western Hill).

Notice that the Bible shows that during the time of Ezra animal sacrifices in the Temple were made before the second Jewish Temple was built:

2 Then Jeshua the son of Jozadak and his brethren the priests, and Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel and his brethren, arose and built the altar of the God of Israel, to offer burnt offerings on it, as it is written in the Law of Moses the man of God. 3 Though fear had come upon them because of the people of those countries, they set the altar on its bases; and they offered burnt offerings on it to the Lord, both the morning and evening burnt offerings. 4 They also kept the Feast of Tabernacles, as it is written, and offered the daily burnt offerings in the number required by ordinance for each day. 5 Afterwards they offered the regular burnt offering, and those for New Moons and for all the appointed feasts of the Lord that were consecrated, and those of everyone who willingly offered a freewill offering to the Lord. 6 From the first day of the seventh month they began to offer burnt offerings to the Lord, although the foundation of the temple of the Lord had not been laid. (Ezra 3:2-6)

So, while a red heifer may be required (or at least desired) for the Temple Institute to sacrifice, an actual rebuilt temple on the Temple Mount is not.

That being said, the Temple Mount area is a likely location for end time sacrifices to resume, especially considering that the Temple Institute insists that it is the correct location (which is truly debatable).

Since the Bible shows that the Jews will again have animal sacrifices (cf. Daniel 9:27; 11:31), the fact that The Temple Institute and others are taking note of another claimed red heifer shows that there is real interest in taking steps that will lead to the fulfillment of various end time prophecies.

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

The Red Heifer, Jewish Beliefs, and the End of the World The Temple Institute is watching a ‘red heifer.’ Why might this be important in the sequence of end time events? Here is a related link in the Spanish language Novilla roja descubierta en EE.UU. e Instituto del Templo está interesado en ella. Here is a related video in English The Red Heifer and the End of the World.
Why is a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem Not Required? Although people like Timothy LaHaye teach a third Jewish temple is required, who is ‘the temple of God” in the New Testament? Does the Bible require a rebuilt Jewish Temple?
Church of God on Jerusalem’s Western Hill Could this building, often referred to as the Cenacle on Mt. Zion, possibly have been the oldest actual Christian church building? Might it contain stones from the Jerusalem Temple?
The ‘Peace Deal’ of Daniel 9:27 This prophecy could give up to 3 1/2 years advance notice of the coming Great Tribulation. Will most ignore or misunderstand its fulfillment? Here is a link to a related sermon video Daniel 9:27 and the Start of the Great Tribulation.
Does the ‘Cenacle’ deal have prophetic ramifications? After a 20 year negotiation, the Church of Rome has negotiated the right to have Catholic mass in the building known as the Cenacle. It is in the area where the Church of God on Jerusalem’s Western Hill once stood. This is believed to be the location of the earliest Christian church building. How does the Bible define the ‘temple of God’ in the New Testament? Could this be the area where the ‘man of sin’ will sit in the “temple of God’ that Bible prophecy discusses in 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4? This is a YouTube video.
Jerusalem: Past, Present, and Future What does the Bible say about Jerusalem and its future? Is Jerusalem going to be divided and eliminated? Is Jesus returning to the area of Jerusalem? There is also a related YouTube video you can watch titled Jerusalem To be divided and eliminated.
Who is the Man of Sin of 2 Thessalonians 2? Is this the King of the North, the ten-horned beast of Revelation 13:1-11, or the two-horned Beast of Revelation 13:12-16? Some rely on traditions, but what does the Bible teach? Here is a related link in Spanish/español: ¿Quién es el Hombre de Pecado de 2 Tesalonicenses 2? Here is a version in Mandarin: 主编: 谁是’大罪人’?Here is a link to a related YouTube video, in English, titled Who is the Man of Sin?
Anglo – America in Prophecy & the Lost Tribes of Israel Are the Americans, Canadians, English, Scottish, Welsh, Australians, Anglo-Saxon (non-Dutch) Southern Africans, and New Zealanders descendants of Joseph? Where are the lost ten-tribes of Israel? Who are the lost tribes of Israel? What will happen to Jerusalem and the Jews in Israel? Will God punish the U.S.A., Canada, United Kingdom, and other Anglo-Saxon nations? Why might God allow them to be punished first? Here is a link to the Spanish version of this article: Anglo-América & las Tribus Perdidas de Israel. Information is also in the YouTube sermons titled Where are the Ten Lost Tribes? Why does it matter? and British are the Covenant People.

Saudi Arabia wants military support from Pakistan: a prelude for the King of the South?

Monday, April 6th, 2015


Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz logo

COGwriter

The political party in control of Pakistan is the Pakistan Muslim League.  Its leaders have been asked to support military actions of Saudi Arabia:

April 6, 2015

Pakistani Defense Minister Khawaja Muhammas Asif said Monday that Saudi Arabia has asked that his military provide ground troops, planes and warships to help a coalition battling rebels in Yemen.

He spoke at the start of a parliamentary debate on whether to join the Saudi-led effort against the Houthis that began nearly two weeks ago with airstrikes in support of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.  The president fled the country last month and went to Riyadh.

Pakistan has pledged to support the overall effort, but has not committed itself to any specific action or contribution.  Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has said he would defend Saudi Arabia from outside attacks.  The fight against the Houthis, who seized Yemen’s capital last September before marching on the southern city of Aden last month, has included rebel attacks on Saudi border crossings.

As the fighting between the Houthis and pro-government forces continued, the International Committee of the Red Cross said Monday it has not been able to deliver some 48 tons of medical supplies it has ready to send into Yemen.  The organization said it has approval, but that logistical concerns about flying into the war-torn country are holding up the process.  http://www.voanews.com/content/pakistan-weights-joining-saudi-coalition-in-yemen/2708122.html

Should Pakistan provide military support, this well could be a prelude to what will happen in the future.  Biblically, a military force of Arabs and others is inevitable. The force will be led by one called the King of the South in Bible prophecy:

40 “At the time of the end, the king of the south shall attack him, but the king of the north shall rush upon him like a whirlwind, with chariots and horsemen, and with many ships. And he shall come into countries and shall overflow and pass through. 41 He shall come into the glorious land. And tens of thousands shall fall, but these shall be delivered out of his hand: Edom and Moab and the main part of the Ammonites. 42 He shall stretch out his hand against the countries, and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 43 He shall become ruler of the treasures of gold and of silver, and all the precious things of Egypt, and the Libyans and the Cushites shall follow in his train. (Daniel 11:40-44, ESV)

The peoples listed above are mainly located in North Africa and the Middle East. They are in Muslim-dominated lands and include the Arabs and some of the Turks.  Cushites, interestingly enough, may include some in Pakistan.  As I have reported here for years, there is a belief that Saudi Arabia made a deal with Pakistan to provide Saudi Arabia nuclear weapons whenever it needs them.  Since the Saudis have money and Pakistan has nuclear weapons, this has long seemed like an arrangement of mutual benefit.

As an Islamic nation, and since some of the descendants of Phut are shown as part of a failed confederation involving Egypt in Ezekiel 30:1-9 and this appears to be an Islamic confederation, it is likely that Pakistan, to a degree, may support the King of the South in Daniel 11:40–though probably not too closely. That will be a mistake. As I have written before, Pakistan may actually directly or indirectly temporarily support the final King of the South to the point that it may even provide some nuclear support (see Pakistan’s Nuclear Weapons, Saudi Arabia, and the King of the South). Yet, since the “European beast,” who is also the final King of the North will defeat the King of the South, Pakistan will likely suppress its ties to Islam around that time–at least for a while.

Now, Saudi Arabia has asked Pakistan to support the military coalition that it and other Muslim nations are putting together.

There are more and more reports in the news about actions that seem to be leading to the formation of the power that will be led by the final King of the South.  Pakistan looks like it may play some role.

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

India, Its Biblical Past and Future: Any Witness? The Bible discusses the origins of those of Indian heritage.  This article quotes the Bible and also discusses some of the witness to India throughout history and what is happening in the 21st century (including those in Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka).
India and the Beast of Revelation 13 Do biblical, Catholic, and even Hindu prophecies suggest that many in India will follow, for a while, the Beast and False Prophet/Antichrist? Here is link to a related YouTube video Will People in India Worship the Beast of Revelation 13?
Egypt in Prophecy Does Egypt have a special role in end time prophecy? Will Egypt rise up and then be defeated. What does God teach will happen to those in Egypt? Here is a link to a YouTube video titled Egypt and End Time Prophecy.
Iraq, the King of the South, Armageddon, and Prophecy What will happen to Iraq? Is it the prophesied Mystery Babylon? What is Armageddon and how does that have to do with Iraq? Here is a related video Iraq, Armageddon, & Prophecy.
Iran in Prophecy Is Iran in Bible prophecy? If so, what does the Bible teach? What names, other than Persia, may be used to describe Iran? There is also a YouTube video titled Iran in Prophecy. Here is a related video Iran In Prophecy.
Is the Future King of the South Rising Up? Some no longer believe there needs to be a future King of the South. Others have many misunderstandings about him. Might Egypt, Islam, Iran, Arabs, or Ethiopia be involved? Might this King be called the Mahdi or Caliph? What does the Bible say? A YouTube video of related interest may be: The Future King of the South is Rising.
The Muslim Brotherhood and the Rise of the King of the South The Bible tells of the formation of a power of nations that
Obama Administration Pushing for an Islamic Empire? Because of the rise of groups such as the Islamic State, the Obama Administration and others are pushing for a coalition of Arab nations along with Turkey. Does this resemble the final King of the South of Bible prophecy? Is there an Islamic antichrist? Does the Bible teach that terrorism and the sword will affect the USA and some of its allies? What does the Bible teach in Ezekiel about a confederation involving Egypt? Will an Arabic confederation end in destruction for those who strongly support it? Are the 10 nations in the Arab coalition the ten kings of Revelation 17:12-13? Are the 10 nations including the USA and Turkey the ten nations of Revelation 17:12-13? Who is? Was the pushing of the Obama Administration to do this predicted by in 2009 in a writing by Dr. Thiel? What does the Bible show? are in the Middle East and North Africa that are part of the final “King of the South” (Daniel 11:40-43) The Muslim Brotherhood wishes to have an Islamic empire with basically the same nations. This YouTube video explains what to expect from such a confederation.
Differences Between Islam and the Continuing Church of God What are some of the main differences? Are there any similarities?
The Gospel of the Kingdom of God was the Emphasis of Jesus and the Early Church Did you know that? Do you even know what the gospel of the kingdom is all about? You can also see a YouTube video sermon The Gospel of the Kingdom.
Just What Do You Mean the Kingdom of God? A booklet that was written by Herbert Armstrong answers questions about the Kingdom.
The Arab and Islamic World In the Bible, History, and Prophecy The Bible discusses the origins of the Arab world and discusses the Middle East in prophecy. What is ahead for the Middle East and those who follow Islam? What about the Imam Mahdi? What lies ahead for Turkey, Iran, and the other non-Arabic Muslims? An item of possibly related interest in the Spanish language would be: Líderes iraníes condenan la hipocresía de Occidente y declaran que ahora es tiempo para prepararse para el Armagedón, la guerra, y el Imán Mahdi.
Is There an Islamic Antichrist? Is Joel Richardson correct that the final Antichrist will be Islamic and not European? Find out.
Arabic Nazarenes May Have Kept Original Christian Practices Were their faithful Arabs who held to original Christianity?
Nazarene Christianity: Were the Original Christians Nazarenes? Who were the Nazarene Christians? What did they believe? Should 21st century Christians be modern Nazarenes? Is there a group that exists now that traces its history through the Nazarenes and holds the same beliefs today? Here is a link to a related video sermon Nazarene Christians: Were the early Christians “Nazarenes”?
Did The Early Church Teach Millenarianism? Was the millennium (sometimes called chiliasm) taught by early Christians? Who condemned it? Will Jesus literally reign for 1000 years on the earth? Is this time near? A related sermon is titled The Millennium.
Does God Have a 6,000 Year Plan? What Year Does the 6,000 Years End? Was a 6000 year time allowed for humans to rule followed by a literal thousand year reign of Christ on Earth taught by the early Christians? Does God have 7,000 year plan? What year may the six thousand years of human rule end? When will Jesus return? 2022 or 20xx? There is also a video titled The 6000 Year Plan: Is the end of humanity’s reign almost up? Here is a link to the article in Spanish: ¿Tiene Dios un plan de 6,000 años?
When Will the Great Tribulation Begin? 2015, 2016, or 2017? Can the Great Tribulation begin today? What happens before the Great Tribulation in the “beginning of sorrows”? What happens in the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord? Is this the time of the Gentiles? When is the earliest that the Great Tribulation can begin? What is the Day of the Lord? Who are the 144,000? Here is a version of the article in the Spanish language: ¿Puede comenzar la Gran Tribulación en 2014 o 2015? ¿Es el Tiempo de los Gentiles? You can also see the English language sermon video: The Great Tribulation from the Mount of Olives.
The ‘Peace Deal’ of Daniel 9:27 This prophecy could give up to 3 1/2 years advance notice of the coming Great Tribulation. Will most ignore or misunderstand its fulfillment? Here is a link to a related sermon video Daniel 9:27 and the Start of the Great Tribulation.
How Will Middle East Peace be Brought About? Can humans bring peace to the Middle East? Here is a link to a related video: Middle East Peace? When?