Tuesday, June 28, 2011
I find myself this day in heavenly places. Surrounding me are legions of holy warrior angels each kneeling before my Lord and master Jesus Christ! They are glowing with the anointing and fire of God. They are one and all kneeling before him with their swords of fire upraised in a holy salute. Turning around I could see angels stretching out as far as the eye could see. They seemed to stretch out almost into infinity.
I know in my spirit there are millions and millions of angels assembled here and I feel in my heart of hearts I have been brought here to be a witness of what is about to happen. Feeling a hand from behind me touch my shoulder I turned and found myself looking in the eyes of the master. I have never known anyone as kind and loving, patient and gentle, as Jesus. Yet today his eyes are also aglow with the fire of the divine.
All my strength left me and I fell on my face before him. I lay at his feet and with my face pressed down into the ground I began to worship him. He reached over and placed his hand on my head. I could feel strength and renewed vigor filling my spirit. Yet at the same time I was feeling his strength enter my spirit, Jesus began to glow and we were surrounded by an intense light that encapsulated both of us but whose source was coming directly from him.
We began to soar upwards and in a few seconds time I found myself standing with the master before the mountain of God once more. The very ground before the mountain was shaking with the glory of God. Turning to my left I saw the master was standing beside me. The ground was shaking under the glory of God. I have never experienced anything like this before.
A strong wind was blowing all around us and I could see it blowing through Jesus hair. Looking up I could see the top of the mountain of God enveloped in fire and a cloud of smoke. My knees began to shake and if Jesus had not at that moment reached over and steadied me I would have fallen to the ground. I have never been so close to the glory of God as I am at this moment.
Jesus turned me to him and we were standing there face to face. The glory of the Lord was radiating from him. Tears formed in his eyes and began to course down his cheeks.
He said, “Michael my son you have suffered great afflictions of body and soul. Even now your body is in pain yet you have never wavered in your commitment to us. The day that you have been reaching for has come. You have traversed the path we set before you without complaint even though you have suffered persecution and pain.
Yet the time is at hand and you are finally ready my son to ascend into the cloud of Father’s glory. We started this son’s journey almost four years ago as you count time and I gave you a word then that when the time was right Father was going to call you unto himself”.
Jesus stopped and wrapped his arms around me. I placed my head on his shoulder but my spirit is lit up with the glory of God.
Jesus said, “I told you then son that when the time was right you would know and I would know. That day has come”.
Having said this to me Jesus simply vanished and I was left alone standing before Father’s mountain. I fell on my knees and raised my arms in submission to the lord.
“Father I submit myself such as I am to you this day once more. I am the least worthy of all your servants to be called here and to stand before your holy mountain. I am weak and sick in body my lord yet I submit to you this day do with me what you will”.
At that moment the air was rent with a loud trumpet blast that I knew from past experience meant Father was calling to someone to come to him. Tears began to roll down my cheeks as I on bended knee worshiped my Lord and my God.
From out of nowhere an angel appeared. He was an angel I recognized. I have had the privilege many times in the past to see him and as all the other times Michael the archangel’s appearance caused me to fall on my face.
The glory of the Lord is so strong here and that anointing is growing by the minute. Michael walked over to where I am lying prostrate on the ground.
“He said rise servant of the most high for I have been charged by Father to bring you into his presence. For the day of his unveiling to you the revelation of his person on his holy mountain has come. You have on your person a scroll that was given to you months ago and had the wisdom to put aside. Now the time has come to open the scroll for your day has come”.
Somehow Michael’s words strengthened me and I was able to stand once more. Michael was standing about ten feet away from me with his sword drawn. I reached inside my cloak and pulled out the scroll. It was sealed with the seal of Father’s own ring. I looked over at Michael and he was just standing there looking at me with a fierce determined look on his face.
I turned my attention once more to the scroll I was holding and with trembling hands I broke the seal and opened the scroll. There was no written message inside the scroll. On the contrary a great force of light and fire entered my spirit when I opened the scroll. Looking up I saw a pillar of fire descending from the top of Father’s mountain and descend down to where I was standing.
The pillar of fire descended until It was only a few feet above my head. The scroll which I opened, the contents of that scroll, have somehow bonded with my spirit and I have been changed on the inside. I have been privileged many times to come face to face with the pillar of the Holy Spirit, but the internal change of which I spoke has changed me and I am seeing and sensing him in an entirely new way than before.
I said Spirit of God take me as I am. I am not worthy that you should come to me for I am a man of faults and failures as any other man, but I long to walk in the glory of my Father’s presence take me as I am I pray for I offer myself this day as a living sacrifice to you”.
Having said this he in a moment’s time enveloped me in the pillar of fire in which he chose to reveal himself at this time and picked me up and carried me to the top of Father’s mountain.
He set me down and I could see the glory cloud of Father’s anointing just a few yards in front of me. The entire top of the mountain was shaking violently and there were flashes of light and thunder. I heard footsteps behind me and soon a figure was standing beside me. Turning I realized it was the master.
He said, “Michael you and I are one and through my death, burial, and resurrection you have been birthed into the family of God. Realize my son that without me you can do nothing. He then reached over and took me by the hand and we began walking over to the glory cloud surrounding Father on his mountain.
Jesus turned his head and our eyes met. A slight smile crossed his face. He and I stopped just a couple of feet from the cloud of glory. I closed my eyes and I could still see flashes of light reaching out to me from inside the cloud.
Jesus said, “Fear not my son the day of revelation has come”.
He then squeezed my hand once more and side by side we entered the cloud.
Story taken from
Lebanon's Hezbollah is preparing for a possible war with Israel to relieve perceived Western pressure to topple Syrian President Bashar Assad, its guardian ally, sources close to the movement say.
The radical Shi'ite group is watching the unrest in neighboring Syria with alarm and is determined to prevent the West from exploiting popular protests to bring down Assad.
Hezbollah supported pro-democracy movements that toppled Western-backed leaders in Tunisia and Egypt, but officials say it will not stand idly by as international pressure mounts on Assad to yield to protesters.
It is committed to do whatever it takes politically to help deflect what it sees as a foreign campaign against Damascus, but it is also readying for a possible war with Israel if Assad is weakened.
"Hezbollah will never intervene in Syria. This is an internal issue for President Bashar to tackle. But when it sees the West gearing up to bring him down, it will not just watch," a Lebanese official close to the group's told Reuters.
"This is a battle for existence for the group and it is time to return the favor (of Syria's support). It will do that by fending off some of the international pressure," he added.
Hezbollah and Syria have both denied that the group has sent fighters to support a military crackdown on the wave of protests against Assad's rule.
Hezbollah believes the West is working to reshape the Middle East by replacing Assad with a ruler friendly to Israel and hostile to itself.
Analysts rule out the possibility of a full-scale regional war involving Syria, Iran and Lebanon on one side against Israel backed by the United States. A war pitting Hezbollah against Israel was more likely, they said.
"There might be limited wars here or there but nobody has the interest (in a regional war)," said Lebanese analyst Oussama Safa. "The region is of course heading towards radical change... How it will be arranged and where it will lead is not clear."
Western intelligence sources say the movement's arsenal has been more than replenished since the fighting ended, with European-led UN peacekeepers in southern Lebanon powerless to prevent supplies entering mostly from Syria.
In the meantime Hezbollah, which has praised other Arab uprisings and enjoys strong support among ordinary Arabs over its confrontations with Israel, has seen its image tarnished because of its support for Assad.
"The events in Syria have not impacted Hezbollah in a significant strategic sense, but have certainly put the party in an uncomfortable position," said Elias Muhanna, a Middle East scholar at Harvard.
"The fact that Nasrallah has supported the regime's war against the opposition in Syria while attacking similar regime actions in Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Bahrain, and Yemen has been pointed out by many as a blatant double standard."
Hezbollah argues there is no contradiction in its position, saying Assad has popular support and is committed to reform.
"When the regime is against Israel and is committed to reforms then Hezbollah decision is to be by the side of the people and the leadership through urging them for dialogue and partnership," the Lebanese official said.
No Bias? While Syria, Libya and Yemen Kill it's citizens - only Israel singled out by UN for humans rights clause
Story taken from
Israel demanded Friday a UN vote and called on members to vote against a Human Rights Council agenda for the next five years, which will keep Israel as the only permanent state to be targeted out of 192 member-states.
The agenda in its current form ensures a continuing and skewed focus on Israel while ignoring other dictatorships and blatant human rights violations.
Israel requested a vote in order to prevent the automatic approval by the UN General Assembly, and in order to allow the state to express its objections.
The US, Canada, and Palau are the only countries that joined Israel in objecting to the agenda, which passed with an automatic approval of 154 states.
Ron Prosor, who just days ago officially assumed the position of Israel's UN ambassador, told Ynet the agenda was absurd.
"These days, as Assad slaughters his citizens, Gaddafi murders his countrymen, and in Yemen people are being gunned down in the street, The Human Rights Council is dedicating a special clause to the issue of human rights in Israel," he said.
"It is utter insolence that tyrannical regimes are judging Israel, the only democratic country in the Middle East, with a dignified court system."
Prosor added, "The Human Rights Council has missed a golden opportunity to become an international body that the global community can treat with respect and seriousness."
The five-year agenda dedicates a clause number seven to Israel while all other countries in the world – including Yemen, Syria, and Libya – are united under clause four, which describes human rights violations in the entire world.
The Human Rights Council was established in 2006 and replaced the United Nations Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR), which lost its reliability, partly due to its disproportionate treatment towards Israel.
Israel was hoping the HRC would make more objective decisions and the US negotiated extensively to this end, but apparently to no avail. Since its establishment, the HRC has met 17 times, 14 of which meetings concluded in anti-Israel resolutions.
Israel has also made numerous attempts to change the HRC's agenda over the past five years, but the council is within complete control of a number of nations which are themselves human rights violators. Libya was, until March, also a member.
Sunday, June 26, 2011
Story taken from
One of the hallmarks of the Arab Spring has been the emergence of a new and more modest American foreign policy. The Obama administration has insisted on not taking the lead in promoting democratic change; it has declined to act unless not just the French and British but the Arab League go first. It still can’t bring itself to say that Bashar al-Assad, a dictator and implacable U.S. enemy who is using tanks and helicopter gunships to slaughter his people, is not qualified to lead Syria to democracy.
Yet there is one big exception: the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. On a Middle Eastern front that has remained mostly quiet in 2011, the position of the United States is: a) it possesses a detailed solution; b) action must be taken immediately; and c) it doesn’t matter whether the people concerned — Israelis and Palestinians — are agreeable or ready.
Obama the timid suddenly turns tough when the “peace process” comes up. He has spoken in public on Syria just twice since its massacres began three months ago. But he chose to spell out U.S. terms for Israeli-Palestinian negotiations without the agreement of Israel’s prime minister, on the eve of meeting him at the White House and with only a few hours’ notice — arguably the most high-handed presidential act in U.S.-Israeli relations since the Eisenhower administration.
Now, with prodding from the European Union, Obama is attempting to strong-arm Israelis and Palestinians into beginning negotiations on the parameters he set. The talks must be agreed to this month, says Washington; they should begin by September. U.S. and European envoys were shuttling between Jerusalem and Ramallah last week in an attempt to extract a “yes” from Binyamin Netanyahu and Mahmoud Abbas.
It would be interesting if this imperialist diplomacy succeeded. If it does, it will disprove the Obama administration’s nascent doctrine about the limits of U.S. power and influence in the Middle East.
Consider the two parties who would be dragged to the negotiating table. Netanyahu heads a right-wing coalition that would almost certainly collapse if he agreed to Obama’s terms — which, in any case, he opposes. A senior Israeli official last week gave me a long list of fixes he said would be needed before his government could accept the Obama formula — and even then, he added, the proposal wouldn’t fly “unless there was a deep reservoir of mutual confidence” between the two leaders, “which doesn’t exist.”
Then there is Abbas, who at 76 is planning his retirement. He has committed himself to spending the next year seeing through a reconciliation with the Hamas movement, arranging elections for his successor and seeking recognition for Palestine at the United Nations. For two years he has refused to negotiate with Netanyahu, whom he despises. Even Yasser Arafat appeared more disposed than this Palestinian leader to make the wrenching concessions needed for a deal. And who would guarantee that the Palestinian president elected next May would pick up where Abbas left off?
What’s extraordinary about Obama’s initiative is not its details, which don’t differ meaningfully from the ideas of Bill Clinton, George W. Bush or, for that matter, several of Netanyahu’s predecessors as prime minister. It is, rather, its superpower chutzpah — the brazen disregard for the views and political posture of this Israeli government, and the fecklessness and disarray of the current Palestinian leadership. Never mind, goes the implicit Euro-American line: We will make this happen.
What could account for such an attitude, given the timorous approach to the rest of the region? Part of it is understandable frustration with years of Israeli-Palestinian impasse, which is magnified by the conviction in much of official Washington that the terms for peace are well known and widely accepted, and need only be implemented. Part is legitimate worry that the Israeli-
Palestinian front, though quiet now, could explode later this year after a United Nations vote, helping extremists in places such as Egypt. Yet the damage to U.S. interests from a U.N. resolution on Palestine would pale compared to the consequences of an Iranian-backed victory by Assad in Syria or the failure of NATO in Libya. Those crises have not moved Obama to lead.
There is, in his diplomacy, an implicit conviction that the United States must first of all deal with the sins of its own client. “Here are the facts we must all confront,” Obama declared in his speech to the AIPAC conference last month, before proceeding to deliver a lecture about Palestinian demography, Arab politics and the United Nations. It wasn’t that he was entirely wrong. But it’s revealing of this president that he is determined to speak truth to Binyamin Netanyahu — and not to Bashar al-Assad.
This Story taken From
A long time ago, when I spent a lot of time at the Council of Ministers in Brussels, my good friend Otto Graf Lambsdorff and I would wearily raise our heads and mutter “Beware the Greeks when they come demanding gifts” when confronted by yet another plea for a subsidy from our Greek colleague. It would be very easy to think that current events in Greece are just a continuation of that same problem.
That would be to misunderstand the grand strategy being pursued in Brussels. It is designed to achieve, without recourse to war, the realization of a dream unfulfilled since the fall of Rome, the first pan-European Empire. Spain, France and Austro Hungary failed in their attempts to build such an Empire and after yet another destructive European war, the founding fathers of the EU swore to achieve through politics what warfare had failed to deliver.
The creation of a common, or to be correct, sole currency, the euro, was not an end in itself, but a weapon to achieve by economic means, a European government. It was about politics, not economics.
Had it been about economics, the Germans would never have closed their eyes and held their noses as the Greek government met the requirement for admission to the currency union only with blatantly falsified statistics. There could never have been any serious doubt that sooner or later there would be a crisis requiring a Greek bail out, default or exit from the eurozone. Nor can there be any doubt that there will be bailout after bailout, with the sums at risk if Greece were to default and exit the zone growing to the level at which it would inflict huge damage to the wider European and world economy. Indeed, there are already whispers that it is our interest to do anything to avoid such a disaster, for if Greece went down Spain might be next.
In short, gradually the Greek escape route out of the euro to reconstruct its economy is being blocked. However, things cannot go on as they are, with drip-feed bailouts while the desperate problems of the Greek people grow worse.
So it will not be long before the would-be collective Emperor in Brussels announces that Tebbit was of course right all those long years ago when he told Chancellor Clarke that no currency can have two, let alone a couple of dozen chancellors and there must be One Euro, One Chancellor, One Finance Ministry, One Tax Rate and One Europe or the whole European economy, including ours, will be brought down.
Could that be a democratic state? Please do not ask awkward questions like that. Just do as you are told. If not, it will be all the worse for you. You must be ready to pay the price for peace (of a kind) and prosperity (of a sort).
Saturday, June 25, 2011
Story taken from
Gary Samore, a top Obama administration national security official, warned of new sanctions if North Korea conducted a third round of nuclear tests on Monday, as reports surfaced that North Korea has miniaturized its nuclear warheads so they can be delivered by ballistic missile.
North Korea’s last round of tests, conducted in May 2009, appear to have included a “super-EMP” weapon, capable of emitting enough gamma rays to disable the electric power grid across most of the lower 48 states, says Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, a former CIA nuclear weapons analyst and president of EMPact America, a citizens lobbying group.
Samore, who handles arms control and non-proliferation issues, warned that “additional strong sanctions will be imposed on the North with the support of Russia and China."
North Korea’s nuclear tests have been dismissed as failures by some analysts because of their low explosive yield. But Dr. Pry believes they bore the “signature” of the Russian-designed “super-EMP” weapon, capable of emitting more gamma radiation than a 25-megaton nuclear weapon.
Pry believes the U.S. intelligence community was expecting North Korea to test a first generation implosion device with an explosive yield of 10 to 20 kilotons, similar to the bomb the U.S. exploded over Nagasaki in 1945. He said, “So when they saw one that put off just three kilotons, they said it failed. That is so implausible."
The technology for producing a first generation implosion weapon has been around since 1945, and is thoroughly described in open source literature.
South Korean defense minister, Kim Kwan-jin, told his country’s parliament on Monday that North Korea had succeeded in miniaturizing its nuclear weapons design, allowing them to place a nuclear warhead on a ballistic missile.
His analysis coincided with Congressional testimony in March by Lt. Gen. Ronald L. Burgess, director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, who stated that North Korea “may now have several plutonium-based warheads that it can deliver by ballistic missiles.”
The Soviet Union conducted an atmospheric test of an EMP weapon in 1962 over Kazakhstan whose pulse wave set on fire a power station 300 kilometers away and destroyed it within 10 seconds.
Such a weapon — equal to a massive solar flare such as the “solar maxima” predicted by NASA to occur in 2012 — poses “substantial risk to equipment and operation of the nation’s power grid and under extreme conditions could result in major long term electrical outages,” said Joseph McClelland of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in Senate testimony last month.
Pry said that a group of Russian nuclear weapons scientists approached him in 2004 when he served as staff director of the Commission to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) Attack, to warn the United States that the technology to make that weapon “had leaked” to North Korea, and possibly to Iran.
“They told us that Russian scientists had gone to North Korea to work on building the super-EMP weapon,” Pry told Newsmax. “The North Koreans appear to have tested it in 2006 and again in 2009.”
North Korea’s main partner in its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs is Iran. Dr. William Graham, chairman of the Commission to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) Attack, warned Congress three years ago that Iran had conducted missile launches in an EMP mode, detonating them high in the atmosphere.
Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., has introduced legislation known as the SHIELD Act that would require U.S. utilities to harden large transformers and other key elements of the nation’s power grid to protect them from a devastating EMP attack or a geomagnetic storm.
The House last year passed a similar measure by unanimous consent, but the bill died in the Senate, where Sen. Jeff Bingaman, D, N.M., and Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Ariz., the chair and ranking member of the Senate Energy Committee, insisted that the threat from cyberattack was more dangerous than the possibility of an EMP strike or a solar flare.
John Kappenman, the chief science adviser to the EMP commission, believes it would require just $1 billion to harden an estimated 5,000 power transformers around the country to shield them from the impact of an EMP-like event.
“We built this infrastructure without any awareness of this threat,” he told Newsmax. “We have no design code that takes this threat into account. We’ve been doing everything to design the grid to make it greatly more coupled, and therefore more vulnerable, to this threat.”
He compared the national power grid to a series of giant skyscrapers, “and only now we’ve discovered that it’s located on a big fault line.”
President Obama’s science adviser, John Holdren, warned in a March 10, 2011 Op-Ed co-authored with his British counterpart of the potentially catastrophic impact of a solar maxima event in the next 12 to 18 months.
Space weather can affect human safety and economies anywhere on our vast wired planet, and blasts of electrically-charged gas traveling from the Sun at up to 5 million miles an hour can strike with little warning,” Holdren wrote. “Their impact could be big — on the order of $2 trillion during the first year in the United States alone, with a recovery period of 4 to 10 years.”
Rep. Trent Franks, who authored the SHIELD Act, warned of “catastrophic consequences” should Congress fail to act.
“The U.S. society and economy are so critically dependent upon the availability of electricity that a significant collapse of the grid, precipitated by a major natural or man-made EMP event, could result in catastrophic civilian casualties,” he said. “This vulnerability, if left unaddressed, could have grave, societal altering consequences.”
Story taken from
Harold Macmillan, the prime minister who watched US power rise as the British empire crumbled, used to say that Britain would play ancient Greece to America’s Rome.
These days it looks as if Rome is declining too. The US finds it increasingly hard to drive forward its vision of international trade and economics over the objections of big emerging-market countries.
The Visigoths and the Vandals who sacked Rome and undermined its empire, though far more cultured and sophisticated than their popular reputation, were unable to replicate the Pax Romana order it had established. European territories previously under Roman rule fractured into an unstable array of weak kingdoms and embattled city-states. Similarly, the vacuum created today by the erosion of US hegemony and the turmoil in the eurozone is resulting in stasis rather than a new direction.
Even those trade officials most hermetically sealed in bureaucratic bubbles are finally accepting that the so-called “Doha round” of trade negotiations, which the US pushed to the launch pad 10 years ago, is expiring. New Delhi and Beijing have shown they are perfectly willing to collapse the talks rather than accede to demands from Washington.
China, with covering fire from other governments, has repulsed much of the US’s charge to force Beijing to liberalise its currency. Assuming that Christine Lagarde, the French finance minister, takes over the managing directorship of the International Monetary Fund, she will inherit a process of mutual economic assessment at the behest of the G20 to encourage global economic rebalancing. But recent history suggests it will do little to make China hasten the rise of the renminbi.
The potential influence of emerging markets is underlined by the sight of Ms Lagarde beetling round the developing world asking for votes. But those countries either collectively or individually have yet to give a coherent view of what they want in return.
Politically, they remain divided. Agustín Carstens, Ms Lagarde’s only challenger, has failed to unite the developing world behind him and seems resigned to setting down a marker for the future.
Emerging markets talk in general terms of increasing their power in the fund. Yet votes and executive board seats are already being shifted – admittedly painfully slowly – away from Europe towards middle-income countries. Many emerging markets would prefer to remove the US’s veto power over important decisions by cutting its share of the vote to below 15 per cent but no credible voting formula has been or will be devised to achieve that. China’s diplomatic efforts within the IMF in recent years have largely been negative, trying to get it to pipe down about the renminbi. Doha is dying but the emerging markets at the centre of the talks – India, China and Brazil – have not sketched a replacement.
True, the emerging markets will supply more top management in the international financial institutions: Justin Lin, the World Bank’s chief economist, and Zhu Min, adviser to the IMF managing director, are both Chinese. But that does not guarantee a change in policy direction. It is the realities of the world economy, rather than the nationality of management, that drives the ideology and purpose of such organisations.
This is evident over the road from the IMF at the World Bank. The US has long had a lock on the bank’s presidency, the counterpart of the traditional European claim on the IMF managing directorship. Back in the 1980s, when the US economy was more dominant and the bank was often the most significant source of finance for many low-income countries, the Reagan administration used it to export an aggressively deregulatory view of economic development.
These days, with developing countries able to tap a range of sources of money, particularly China, the bank’s discourse has shifted towards inclusiveness and policy eclecticism rather than privatising anything that moves. It is not clear what the US now gets out of running the World Bank.
As one G20 official says of the governance of global trade: “At the moment, the US cannot lead but nothing can happen without the US.” The age of Pax Americana is gradually passing but as yet there is no organised power rising to supplant it.
Friday, June 24, 2011
In our world today there coexists two entirely different forces and two different kinds of people. Logic dictates that the world if one concedes the providence of a creator was never intended to be the world we see today. The lord has impressed on me that we can see in Genesis chapter one the work of the triune God in not only the creative acts of God, but also the work of the Holy Spirit in the salvation of the individual human heart.
In many ways a tragic liberalism has crept into the church of Jesus Christ this has created concepts that have blurred the biblical realties as given in the word of God. In the first seven chapters of this work we have seen fallen man through the prism of God’s view of man. I shall put it in words I hope everyone may understand.
Society has lost many God given values that shaped the moral fabric of the Christian world in the past. No longer even in many Christian circles is the Bible accepted as the inerrant word of God. This has had tragic consequences for the world around us. In the church individual believers feel free to accept some things written in the bible but to reject others.
The consequences of this have been horrific. The bible unequivocally states that the soul without Christ is lost. Sin as defined in the word of God separates fallen man from God. Hell is the destiny of all lost souls who do not accept Jesus Christ as Savior. Yet in our modern world the Bible has gone from the book by which right and wrong are to be evaluated to just one of many other versions of truth.
Our society to put it bluntly no longer accepts the concept of sin as taught in the word of God. If we do not believe in the existence of sin in the first place we go from sinners lost before God to individuals who are just maladjusted who need loving guidance and support to change.
If we no longer see ourselves as sinners we lose the need for salvation. If man does not need salvation in this world view it is because the concept of the fall of man as recorded in Genesis chapter three is no longer held to be credible. If man is not fallen and we are not lost sinners before God than the existence of hell is the next domino to fall. The God of the bible is turned from the just sovereign of the universe to whom we shall all give an account to someday, to a kind Father figure who loves us just as we are, no matter what our conduct may imply.
One may ask why all of this is so important. Because I believe there are millions of people all over the world who confess their belief in God but to whom they do not feel personally accountable in any way. The message coming from pulpits across the nation is a socially acceptable gospel intended to not offend anyone. Any mention of the word sin and the biblical concept that we as believers have a moral responsibility to live holy devout lives before God is ridiculed as legalism. Such a message is relegated to the thinking of the past.
It is not my purpose to be hard here. However our worldview is colored by our spiritual view. If any so called believer has rejected the concept of holiness before God it colors his or her perception of how they may approach God. I have been blessed to have walked with the Lord for over fifty years now. As the readers of my blog may attest I have had many visions and encounters with the Lord.
I have been asked many times how can I walk in heavenly places as you do. There are many reasons that I could and shall refer to in this work but it is built on the principles of God’s word. If you believe that yes I know that God wants me to live right but it doesn’t really matter how I live because he will always forgive me no matter what you will never walk in the deep things of God.
God reveals his heart and revelation to the holy. The word states unequivocally that only the holy shall see God. This pertains to this world as well as the next. Let no careless person think that it does not matter to God how they live. We have been purchased with a price and therefore belong to God. Yes it is true that he will forgive us time and time again, and it is also true that in this life we never lose the ability to sin and thus cannot walk in total perfection before him.
Yet let it also be stated plainly and without equivocation that God shares his secrets and opens the revelation of the kingdom to that individual who rises from his bed each day ,and kneels with trembling knees, and seeks him to be filled with righteousness from on high, that he might walk in holiness before God that day and be a witness to a lost and dying world.
Most of the people who have inquired of me how do I walk with God as you do have no idea what they ask. God will share with anyone the deep secrets of his kingdom and being. The price is the total sacrifice of all that we are that we as believers may be filled with the fullness of God.
In closing I would bring to any that are reading this missive that my heart is grieved at the change I have seen in the church in my time. There was a time when believers would gather together for what we called in those days revival. I remember most clearly at the end of each revival meeting the saints of God would gather together to pray and seek his face at the altar. Many wonderful things happened in the altars of those days. The memory to which my spirit longs for today is at the end of those services we sang songs and gave testimonies of the wonderful things God had effectuated in our hearts that night.
We took great delight in the fact that we were in the world but not of the world. We were pilgrims passing through for we like Abraham were seeking a city whose builder and maker is God. Most of all we reveled in the fact that having come to God on bended knee we were holy separated sanctified vessels of God.
The change In the direction of the church could not be more shocking. Today believers come to God to celebrate and party. The height of worship is to get drunk in the spirit and lose one’s ability to function. I see very little repentance of sin in these grand meetings. On the contrary preachers of true righteousness and accountability before God are ridiculed and despised as legalists who are too blind to join in the new wave of what God is doing now.
I will close with this final observation. All true revival brings in its wake a consciousness of sin and of our need to fall on bended knee before God. Any purported move of God where sinners in the surrounding community are not brought under the conviction of the Holy Spirit and brought into the church is a lie and a farce. Many so called great spiritual gatherings today are no different in their effects from the local bar down the street. People after all go to a bar to drink to forget the pain in their lives, and to get a buzz under the influence of alcohol.
In a revival sent from heaven the people of God will be made aware of the state of the unbelievers all around them. Their hearts will be consumed with a passion sent from heaven to pray and intercede on bended knee with a barrage of prayer seeking the Lord for a move of his spirit to bring the lost into his kingdom.
Jesus said you will know them by their fruits. This is not only true of individuals but movements as well. Today believers congregate to gather to dance and party in the house of God while the unbelieving world in a more desperate state than ever sees millions of souls lost and without God on their path to hell.
In conclusion I call on all true believers in Christ to ask the Lord to open the hearts of the church in our world today to both repent and allow the Holy Spirit to give them a passion for the lost. If we are in the last of the last days as I believe we are, there are billions of souls standing on the threshold of the tribulation. God help us to bring the light of the grace of God into their hearts and lives.
An al-Qaida-linked website has posted a potential hit list of targets that include names and photos of several U.S. officials and business leaders, calling for terrorists to target these Americans in their own homes, NBC New York has learned.
The FBI has sent out a new intelligence bulletin to law enforcement agencies, warning that this new web-based threat, while not a specific plot, is very detailed. The bulletin said the list includes leaders "in government, industry and media."
The FBI has notified those individuals who are named.
NBC New York will not identify them or their companies. The list includes Wall Street firms, political leaders, leaders with think tanks and contractors who do business with the military.
The websites contain 40 specific names, 26 of them with photos attached, and they call for posting home addresses. One jihadist called for sending package bombs to any listed address as just one possibility.
The FBI is calling the list of names the most detailed web-based al-Qaida-linked threat since Osama bin Laden was killed. The list has also been discussed on another al-Qaida-linked web forum.
The concern is a lone actor could try to use the specific information for a plot.
The FBI letter says the information on the overseas websites "is aspirational and it's unknown if the threat will progress beyond these discussion forums."
These specific postings follow calls by Adam Gadahn -- al-Qaida’s American-born communication chief -- for individual attacks.
Officials are concerned the list has been shared on numerous jihadist sites.
“What’s scary about this is how specific the individual information is,” said former New York State Homeland Security Director Michael Balboni. “What you don't know is, when does aspirational become operational in cases like this, involving a possible lone actor here inspired by a website.”
The FBI memo stresses al-Qaida and its supporters have a history of making web based threats with little result.
“Part of this is a necessary precaution. You don’t want to scare people,” Balboni said. “But there is much more specific, individual targeting than we've seen before.”
Since bin Laden was killed, intelligence officials have been working to track terrorists and monitor possible plots. Experts say fear of a homegrown or isolated actor remains a concern.
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Jesus and I have been in hell now for eight days. We have been traveling down a long dark tunnel. Our course has taken us ever downward deeper and deeper into the inner recesses of hell. The air is hot and oppressive. The atmosphere is one of utter hopelessness and despair. We have come to the end of the passageway through which we have been traveling ever since we arrived here.
During all this time I have seen no one except the master. Turning to look at him I could see a look of deep concern on his face. Sighing I take great comfort in having him here with me. I cannot imagine what it would be like to be here alone and without him. In the distance I can see a large entrance way. Suddenly my heart was flooded with an intense fear.
I have never felt anything like this. I began to tremble all over and would have fallen over if the master had not stopped and put his hand on my shoulder to steady me. Looking up I saw he was looking directly into my eyes. Almost instantly my fears began to subside and my spirit was strengthened by the love of my lord and savior.
He said, “My son these are the days long ago foretold by anointed prophets of God. Fear not my son for as before they will not be able to see us. I have brought you here to reveal to you the great evil that shall soon be unleashed in the world. This is the force and power of apostasy that shall soon consume the hearts of the leaders of all nations.
There have never been days like those that lie just ahead. Millions around the world shall because of the terrors hell that shall soon be unleashed in the world, shall be prepared to accept the rule of that evil one foretold in my word. It is for these days my son you have been in preparation. Come let us be going for I have many things to show you”.
Having said this he turned and began walking once more to the entranceway that was growing closer and closer with each step. It was eerie because as of yet I have still seen no one. The only sounds were the echoes of our sandals echoing off the walls of the chamber we are traversing. I can hear a strange humming sound that even though I have no idea what it is fills my heart with fear and dread. I soon saw why as we came to the entrance of the large cave beyond. There was an inscription on the side of the entranceway. I recognized at once Father’s hand writing with which I am familiar. There was an inscription sealed with the seal of God on the face of this wall.
Upon closer examination I could tell the inscription and seal were very old. I could not make out what it said and in confusion I turned to the master. He was standing right beside me facing the wall where the inscription was. He reached out and gently ran his fingers over the front of the seal. Looking at his face I could see tears had welled up in his eyes and had begun to trickle down his cheeks.
I put my arm on his shoulder in a feeble attempt on my part to comfort him. He turned and looked at me and smiled. Yet even in the smile I could see the pain in his eyes. One of the remarkable things about Jesus that I have seen over and over is the compassion that drives his heart,
He said, Michael my son this seal was placed here by Father ages ago in the distant past before time had even begun in the universe”.
Having said this he paused and reached over and touched the writing again.
“My child there are many heavenly languages some that only my Father and I and the Holy Spirit understand. There are spiritual forces so dark that upon the rebellion of Lucifer they were deemed to wicked to dwell within the world of men. These are the spirits of evil spoken of in my word that shall be released in an hour of Father’s choosing. They were placed here and kept here by Father’s will.
Father himself sealed them in and placed this inscription here and sealed it with his ring. Come my son for you must see that which shall shortly be released in the world”.
Having said this Jesus turned took my hand in his and we walked past the entranceway and found ourselves in a vast cave. I was surprised to see a legion of warrior angels standing guard. They perceived at once the Lord and dropped down on one knee with their swords of fire raised in a holy solute. Jesus gestured for them to stand to their feet, which they did at once. They once more took their posts surrounding an evil force that lay just beyond.
It is dark in this place but there was still enough light to perceive that there was a great chasm just beyond the angels standing guard. I could hear the humming sound more clearly now and I perceived in my spirit the greatest force of evil I had ever encountered before. Whatever these beings were they were located at the bottom of the pit just in front of us.
The master reached over and put his arm on my shoulder and led me back a little distance from the pit. I could still hear the humming sound in the distance.
Jesus said, “Michael my son these forces of apostasy and wickedness shall soon be released from their place of confinement. They shall be the spiritual forces of wickedness that shall turn the lost of the world and convince them to follow the evil one whose appearing has been foretold of old. They shall inspire the world to walk after the beast in wonder and worship.
Michael my son it was necessary to bring you here and show you the spiritual reality of the end times wickedness and evil. Many so called followers of mine who serve me only for gain and spiritual sensation shall believe the lie of antichrist and follow him. These evil beings shall be the source of the miraculous and under the evil ones direction they shall perform signs and wonders.
They shall not be allowed to succeed. Millions shall follow the voice of iniquity and follow them to their own destruction. This is the enemy you shall encounter my child in the days ahead. They shall spread sickness and death throughout the world. Worldwide famine caused by the wars of conquest envisioned by the prince of darkness shall follow in their wake. My son there are many more places of evil and wickedness that hell is preparing to unleash in the world. Yet fear not for my child evil shall once and for all in this hour shown to be what it is”.
Jesus having said this reached over and took my hand once more. His eyes began to glow with the fire of God and his vestige began to glow with the brilliance of the sun. I fell to my knees before him and began to worship him. I was soon enveloped in the light and glory of God. The light was so bright and the glory of the lord so intense that even ii hell the darkness was enveloped by the light of the glory of God.
I could no longer see the pit but I noticed the hum I had been hearing coming from the pit had stopped. In its place shrieks of terror and torment could be heard echoing out of the pit. At that moment Jesus and I began to rise and in a moments time we left hell and its environs far behind. In a blink of an eye I found myself in the throne room of God. Jesus was still standing beside me.
He said, “The final battle shall soon begin and as I have shown you hell is in preparation to unleash upon the world a blood bath of evil. Yet this shall be seen as the hour of Father’s great working in the earth. Come my son for as you have seen hell and its preparations I shall now unveil to you the glory of the Lord that shall soon be released in the world through the church”.
The atmosphere could not have been more different. I could see at a glance millions of angels all carrying swords of fire and each glowing with the glory and fire of the Lord. I had stopped for a moment to look at the wonder of this heavenly host.
Jesus looked at me and smiled. Come my son for I would share with you that which my Father shall soon unleash in the world”.
I turned and once more followed him. My heart is aflame with the glory of the Lord.
The conservative party of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan won a clear victory in parliamentary elections on Sunday with a strong showing that critics worry might be used to further consolidate its power after nearly a decade of rule and to circumscribe civil liberties and its political opposition.
With 99 percent of the returns counted, Mr. Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development Party won about 50 percent of the votes, according to the semiofficial Anatolian News Agency. The main opposition group, the Republican People’s Party, won nearly 26 percent, and another opposition party, the Nationalist Action Party, had 13 percent, the agency said.
The returns give the pro-Islamist Justice and Development Party, known as the A.K.P., its third term in office since it first won a parliamentary majority in 2002. The results, however, failed to provide the absolute majority that the party wanted to push for major changes, including a shift to a presidential system and the drafting of a new constitution. The party will now have to work to forge consensus with its opposition.
Mr. Erdogan, in an address to hundreds of cheering supporters at his party headquarters in Ankara, the capital, acknowledged the need to work for a consensus if constitutional reforms were to be realized, a priority shared by the country’s political parties and civil organizations.
“Our nation delivered to us a call for consensus and dialogue in making this new constitution,” Mr. Erdogan said. “This constitution will be established upon brotherhood, support, sharing, unity and togetherness.”
Kemal Kilicdaroglu, the leader of the Republican People’s Party, congratulated Mr. Erdogan on his success, but emphasized that he and his party would be scrutinizing the government’s approach to upholding democratic principles as any push for a new constitution went forward.
The current Constitution was prepared after a military coup in the 1980s, and many here believe that it elevates protections for the state above those of citizens, at the expense of individual rights and freedoms. Under Mr. Erdogan’s stewardship, the government restored political and economic stability after years of turmoil, though opponents say the gains have come at the price of an increasingly autocratic exercise of power.
Supporters credit Mr. Erdogan with elevating Turkey’s profile in the Middle East, turning the country into an increasingly assertive regional player at a time when several of its neighbors are locked in sometimes violent struggles for democracy. One of most violent, in Syria, Turkey’s neighbor to the southeast, has sent thousands of refugees spilling over the border.
Mr. Erdogan has moved the country further up the road, although sometimes a bumpy one, to European Union membership. His party has brought the country strong economic growth of 8.9 percent, though unemployment remains stubbornly high at nearly 12 percent and income distribution remains uneven.
But his party has moved from the reformist approach it took in the early years of its rule, leaving an opening for opponents like the Social Democratic Republican People’s Party, which had some success in the current balloting for 550 seats in Parliament in winning back centrist Turks wary of the conservative tack the ruling party has taken.
“I support some of the party’s politics for stability in the country,” Bahar Forta, 62, a dermatologist, said as she was leaving a polling station at a high school in Sisli, an upper-middle-class neighborhood in Istanbul. “However, I also see that the power they hold — almost like a single-party system — will ultimately pave the way for an autocratic regime.”
For many younger voters, their biggest concerns were violations of civilian liberties.
“There is a thin line between stability and democracy,” said Mustafa Guler, 27, a computer technology consultant, who was on his way to vote.
“Freedom for minorities is still an issue, alcohol use is controlled by a government agency,” he said, adding: “Even leave all that aside — what can be more absurd in this day and age than to close down YouTube? My vote is to break their majority.”
Many Web sites, including YouTube, have been blocked in recent years by the government Internet Monitoring Agency, often without explanation.
Critics point to the fact that Turkey currently has more than 60 journalists in jail, many charged with crimes related to their published work, according to the Turkish Press Association.
At least two — Nedim Sener and Ahmet Sik, both investigative journalists critical of the A.K.P. and supportive Islamic organizations — have not been notified of their charges since their arrests in March.
Despite these shortcomings, some liberal circles have praised government efforts in challenging the status quo of the powerful military, which has staged three coups and until recently maintained a virtually untouchable place in Turkish politics.
The government oversaw a controversial trial of a group accused of plotting a coup against the ruling party in 2003. The investigation included the arrests of hundreds of officers, retired as well as active duty, tarnishing the military’s image and effectively eliminating it from politics.
Lebanon's Prime Minister Najib Mikati announced on Monday a long-delayed new government dominated by allies of Iranian-backed Hezbollah, which is likely to cause alarm among Western powers.
Mikati was appointed to form a government after Hezbollah and its allies toppled Western-backed former premier Saad al-Hariri's coalition in January over a dispute involving the United Nations backed tribunal investigating the assassination of statesman Rafik al-Hariri, Saad's father.
"Let us go to work immediately according to the principles and basis that we have affirmed our commitment to several times, namely ... defending Lebanon's sovereignty and its independence and liberating land that remains under the occupation of the Israeli enemy," Mikati said at the Baabda Presidential Palace.
Political wrangling had held up the formation of the cabinet, including disagreements over sensitive posts.
Mohammed Safadi, the former economy minister, was named finance minister and will try to improve Lebanon's growth outlook which stands at about 2.5 percent this year, driven down by the political stalemate.
Fayez Ghusn was named defense minister and Marwan Charbel as the interior minister. Nicolas Sehnawi was given the telecommunications portfolio, a post ridden with controversy due to disagreements over privatizing the sector.
Hariri, who is supported by the West and Saudi Arabia, has refused to join Mikati's government.
A main aim of the government will be to agree on a unified stand to face indictments by the tribunal expected to implicate members of Hezbollah in the 2005 killing of Hariri. The group denies any link to the attack.
Mikati, who says he is politically neutral, said the Lebanese government would seek to maintain positive ties with all Arab countries.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who has been fighting a popular revolt against his 11-year rule, telephoned Mikati to congratulate him, Lebanese media said. Syria is a strong ally of Hezbollah, the main player in the political coalition which helped bring Mikati to power in January.
"This government is committed to maintaining strong, brotherly ties which bind Lebanon to all Arab countries without exception," Mikati said.
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
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The Palestinians are sticking to their demand for an Israeli settlement construction freeze in the West Bank, Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said Thursday, complicating President Barack Obama's latest peace drive.
Obama recently outlined his vision of two states based on the pre-1967 war lines, with mutually agreed land swaps. The president's call for talks did not mention a new settlement freeze, and U.S. officials have indicated it is not essential to the restarting of talks.
"All that we want is a two-state solution based on the '67 borders and stopping settlement activities," Erekat said in Jordan, following Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' meeting with American envoys Dennis Ross and David Hale.
The latest round of peace talks broke down in September, just three weeks after their launch, with the expiration of an Israeli moratorium on settlement building in the West Bank.
The Palestinians have refused to negotiate without a new one that also includes east Jerusalem. Israel is demanding talks without preconditions, and says settlements should be one of the topics discussed.
Since the breakdown, Abbas has agreed to reconcile with Gaza's Hamas militants and has forged ahead with plans to seek U.N. recognition for a state, with or without a peace deal with Israel.
The United States opposes the move and has the power to veto the effort at the United Nations Security Council. It is not clear yet whether the U.S. will exercise its veto power.
Erekat said Abbas told the American diplomats the Palestinians were going ahead with recognition at the U.N. in September. "The Americans said they would be against us in this issue," he said.
U.S. officials say that a Palestinian demand for a freeze is now just as big a concern as Hamas' participation in a Palestinian unity government. Israel, the U.S. and EU label Hamas a terror group, and Israel has said it would not negotiate with a Palestinian government that includes Hamas, which rules Gaza. Abbas and his current government are in control of the West Bank.
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The International Monetary Fund cut its forecast for U.S. economic growth on Friday and warned Washington and debt-ridden European countries that they are "playing with fire" unless they take immediate steps to reduce their budget deficits.
The IMF, in its regular assessment of global economic prospects, said bigger threats to growth had emerged since its previous report in April, citing the euro zone debt crisis and signs of overheating in emerging market economies.
The Washington-based global lender forecast that U.S. gross domestic product would grow a tepid 2.5 percent this year and 2.7 percent in 2012. In its forecast just two months ago, it had expected 2.8 percent and 2.9 percent growth, respectively.
With regard to the global economy overall, the IMF struck a measured tone, saying the slowdown of recent months should be "temporary." It trimmed its forecast for global growth this year only slightly, to 4.3 percent from 4.4 percent, and maintained its estimate for robust Chinese growth of 9.6 percent despite recent signs of a slowdown there.
Yet that relatively benign global outlook could quickly fall apart if politicians in the United States and Europe do not start showing more leadership in addressing their countries' debt problems, the fund warned.
"You cannot afford to have a world economy where these important decisions are postponed, because you're really playing with fire," said Jose Vinals, director of the IMF's monetary and capital markets department.
"We have now entered very clearly into a new phase of the (global) crisis, which is, I would say, the political phase of the crisis," he said in an interview in Sao Paulo, where the updates to the IMF's World Economic Outlook and Global Financial Stability Report were published.
In the United States, the political problems include a fight over raising the legal ceiling on the nation's debt. A first-ever U.S. default would roil markets, and Fitch Ratings said even a "technical" default would jeopardize the country's AAA rating.
The IMF said the outlook for the U.S. budget deficit this year has improved somewhat due to higher-than-expected revenues. In a separate report, it forecast a deficit of 9.9 percent of GDP -- better than the deficit of 10.8 percent of GDP it foresaw in April, but still near historic highs.
MARKETS INCREASINGLY ON EDGE
The fund, which has endured its own political crisis due to the resignation of its chief, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, on sexual assault charges, said the global economy "has gained ground" despite a slowdown it deemed "not reassuring."
It attributed the weakness to temporary disruptions such as the Japan earthquake, bad weather pressuring food crops and higher energy prices. Global growth should "reaccelerate" during the second half of the year, the report said.
The fund's forecast for global growth next year remained unchanged at 4.5 percent.
The IMF raised its growth view for the euro area in 2011 to 2.0 percent from 1.6 percent. For 2012, the IMF saw growth at 1.7 percent, little changed from its previous 1.8 percent.
Yet Europe also poses some of the biggest risks to the global economy, Vinals said.
"If you make a list of the countries in the world that have the biggest homework in restoring their public finances to a reasonable situation in terms of debt levels, you find four countries: Greece, Ireland, Japan and the United States," Vinals said.
Greece has edged closer to default as euro zone officials disagree on a planned second aid package for the indebted country. With strikes and protests around the country, political turmoil has added to uncertainty, stoking fears that the government will not be able to tighten its belt enough to reduce crippling deficits.
Fears of contagion in the euro zone have driven global stock markets lower in recent sessions.
The fund raised its forecast for Germany, the powerhouse of the euro zone, to 3.2 percent from 2.5 percent, with growth moderating to 2 percent in 2012.
Forecasts for large emerging markets remained stable or slipped. While China's GDP view stayed unchanged, the IMF lowered its Brazil outlook to 4.1 percent from 4.5 percent.
Those countries, along with Russia, India and South Africa, make up the fast-growing BRICS, a group of emerging economies whose brisk expansion has outstripped that of developed markets recently.
Robust economic growth and rising inflation have caused emerging economies to tighten monetary policy with higher interest rates and reserve requirements, even as many developed nations keep policy ultra-loose to try to boost anemic growth.
The IMF warned that many emerging markets still need more tightening. In China, for example, the high inflation rate means negative real interest rates.
Some emerging markets have been reluctant to tighten too far, fearful of derailing growth or attracting speculative investment flows that could push their currencies ever higher.
Monday, June 20, 2011
Then God said, “Let the land sprout with vegetation—every sort of seed-bearing plant, and trees that grow seed-bearing fruit. These seeds will then produce the kinds of plants and trees from which they came.” And that is what happened. 12 The land produced vegetation—all sorts of seed-bearing plants, and trees with seed-bearing fruit. Their seeds produced plants and trees of the same kind. And God saw that it was good. 13 And evening passed and morning came, marking the third day. (Genesis 1:11-13 NLT)
I have had many people ask me how to walk in a deeper relationship with God. The Lord gave me the revelation sometime back that in the book of Genesis we find all the great works of God. They are given to us in seed form however. The almighty God created the world in six days. In the first six teachings in this series we have seen how in the creation narrative we see a remarkable parallel to the work of the Holy Spirit in the new birth.
In our last teaching we saw that on the third day God caused the waters to divide and to have the dry land appear. In the same way when we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior Christ is formed in us. Just moments before, we were lost and undone. Yet upon our acceptance Jesus himself came alive in our spirits. We who had been incapable of life before now just as the earth was formed out of the darkness so now we are changed.
This land begins to bear fruit right away. On this day three types of vegetation was created. Grasses, the herb bearing seed of grains such as wheat, and the seed for fruit bearing trees as well are all able to come to life on this earth. In these three types of vegetation we can see the work of grace in the human heart.
The first type of vegetation was the grasses. Grass does not require much to take hold. It mainly requires good soil in which to take root and the sunlight to produce growth and life.
Paul spoke of new believers as babes in Christ. The newly born in Christ like the grasses of the plains main job is to take root and survive. Two things are the cause and effect of this life. First of all in this living example the Holy Spirit is the sunlight. Jesus is the new land that rises up out of the darkness of our past life before we met the Lord.
We who were dead inside lost without God, now have the life of Christ inside us and the Holy Spirit causes the grasses to grow and cover the land. So many believers never grow beyond this stage. They gather together in grand assemblies and their sole purpose in being there is to experience some new thing. This is a natural state for baby believers but not so for those who have walked with the Lord for any extended period of time.
To walk in the deeper realms of God however requires a price to be paid. Jesus said that unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies it has no life. There comes a time when the Holy Spirit will lead us to move up higher. Jesus said unless we take up our cross and follow him daily we cannot be his disciples.
The grains of the earth represent a step up from the grass of the newly converted. We must to walk in the higher realms with God be willing to sacrifice all that we are that we might gain Christ. Our Lord came to live and die as a man that a new form of life would come into existence. To grow into the man or woman of God he is calling us all to be we must be willing to take the seed or kernel of wheat that we are and bury it in the dry land that is Christ formed in us.
We must sacrifice all the lusts and ambitions of the soul at the foot of the cross that we may then be lifted up into the risen Christ. We do this not just once but daily. Jesus is not willing to invest in the human heart the glories of the kingdom yet to come if we ourselves are not willing to sell out everything to him and in his service.
Yet if we are willing to lay down our lives daily at the foot of the cross a new life shall be formed in us. The Holy Spirit takes the lifeless seed that our natural life is and plants it in Christ. From this union with Christ we are transformed into the living grains as seen it the wheat fields of the plains. We are raised in him into newness of life and like him we shall walk in the revelation and glory of the one into whom we have given ourselves.
How pitiful and lifeless are the temptations of hell when we see them through the eyes of the resurrected life of the Son. The first step in walking in the higher realms with God is we as individuals must be willing to die to all that we are that we might walk in his life. The wheat of the plain is the risen life of the son. We have gone from simply basking in the love of God as the grass of the field, to by willingly laying down our life transformed into beings that walk in and by the life of God.
Many things happen at this stage. The first one is we gain the internal revelation of the risen Lord in our hearts and our eyes are opened to the kingdom of God. The Holy Spirit begins to reveal to us the deep truths of the word and we begin to become others minded instead of being self centered as the carnal and unbelievers are.
Jesus was the prime example of a man who laid down his life at every stage to be obedient to the will of his Father. He was here to be obedient to the will of his Father and to give his life as a sacrifice for the whole world. Those who would walk in his anointing must first of all be willing to follow him where ever he may lead no matter where that might be.
Yet the believer who has done this is more than willing to do so. Those with the grass of the fields understanding see their spiritual purpose in life as the sustaining of the life and revelation they have known by basking in the sunlight of the Holy Spirit. The shocking truth is most believers never get past this stage. They are more than willing to walk in the bright light of the blessings of the Lord, so long as it does not cost them anything.
Their mentality is to sow that they might gain. The kingdom of God is all tied up in them and what blessing and understanding they have seen. Yet like the grass of the field they must be given the revelation by the Holy Spirit that it is the will of the Father that they move on beyond the anointing and understanding of the grass type revelation. They must allow the Holy Spirit to place within their hearts the desire to plant themselves totally and completely into the earth of the risen Christ.
The revelation that is given to the heart by the Holy Spirit is far different than the understanding they had known previously as grass. The world is seen through the eyes of the Spirit of God. This is possible because the individual so motivated has been transformed from a heart capable of merely sustaining themselves, into a grain of living wheat capable of feeding others.
This life is not just a product of the Holy Spirit. This life is a higher, deeper understanding of Christ that can only be seen or given to the heart who lays their life down that they main gain an understanding of the kingdom of God.
Finally the final vegetation mentioned is the fruit trees. Only those willing to lay down their natural life as the grain of wheat are able to begin to bear the fruit of the Spirit as typified in the fruit trees of the third day of creation. The fruit of the Spirit will only grow in the soil and life of someone who has laid his or her life down in his service.
The fruits of the Spirit are the divine attributes of the personality of God. God places far more value on fruit in our lives than how many gifts of the Spirit we may have had placed in our lives. What we are speaks volumes. Many see themselves as spiritually mature because they have been blessed by God to walk in a ministry gift or office. May the church of the living Christ so dedicate themselves to bearing fruit. The gifts without the fruit are carnal and self serving.
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Tony Blair’s interview in this morning’s Times deserves to be widely read on both sides of the Atlantic. Why? Because it shows that the Eurofederalists’ delusions of grandeur are firmly alive and remain a huge threat not only to British national sovereignty but the future of the transatlantic alliance, especially the Special Relationship. It is also a further demonstration of just how far removed Tony Blair is from political reality and public opinion in the UK, but that’s never stopped him before.
Blair has always been a European idealist at heart, even though he found out the hard way during the Iraq War that you can’t be both America’s best friend and ally and cosy up to Brussels at the same time. Over Iraq Blair found himself isolated among the ruling elites of Old Europe, especially with Germany and France, and at odds with the leadership of the European Union. He took the right decision to go to war to remove Saddam Hussein but was scorned by the EU establishment. Despite all this, he still remains wedded to the idea that Britain must be at the heart of a federal Europe, and believes that London should be at the forefront of driving the process of further European integration.
In his interview with The Times, the former prime minister calls for an elected president of the European Union, selected by an electorate of nearly 400 million people, which “would give the EU clear leadership and enormous authority on the world stage.” It is essential for Europe to have “strong, collective leadership and direction.” This is necessary, Blair believes, because “we won’t have the weight and influence a country like Britain needs unless we’re part of that European power as well.”
Significantly, his grand scheme is all about “power, not peace”, with a muscular Brussels supposedly taking on the rising ’superpower’ in Beijing:
“In a world in particular in which China is going to become the dominant power of the 21st century, it is sensible for Europe to combine together, to use its collective weight in order to achieve influence. And the rationale for Europe today therefore is about power, not peace.”
In all but name, Blair is urging the creation of a European superstate, a rival power to both the United States and China, one where national sovereignty is pooled in several key areas, including defence and foreign policy, immigration and organised crime, tax policy, and energy. The foundations for much of this have already been laid by the Treaty of Lisbon, but Blair’s vision takes the European project considerably further, especially in the area of tax harmonisation and defence.
Blair himself admits that there is little chance of his idea of an elected president being embraced at home at this moment (a position that he no doubt wishes to fill himself), but insists that this is the path that Britain and Europe must ultimately take. And there can be little doubt that his dream of a politically and economically unified EU is shared by many other leaders across Europe who remain wedded to the concept of ever closer union, despite the crisis in the Eurozone, and the irrelevance of Brussels over Libya.
While Blair’s words may sound like a pipe dream, the defenders of sovereignty and freedom in Britain and across the European continent should remain on their guard. For as we have seen so many times in the past, European national leaders, including in London, have made concession after concession as national sovereignty has been eroded treaty by treaty, overwhelmingly without popular consent. Who would have thought two decades ago that the EU would today have its own diplomatic corps with 7,000 staff and a budget of more than £6 billion, and with the tacit acceptance of a Conservative-led Coalition?
Tony Blair’s vision for a European superstate is a nightmare for anyone who cares about Britain’s future as a free country governed by its own elected representatives, and must be actively fought by this government and the next, as well as by generations to come. As Lady Thatcher remarked in her final book Statecraft, “that such an unnecessary and irrational project as building a European superstate was ever embarked upon will seem in future years to be perhaps the greatest folly of the modern era.” How right she was, and Blair’s interview today only serves to reinforce the importance of that message.
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Like the vanishing point in a perspective painting, long-term projections help us order our perceptions of what we see in front of us today. Here's one to think about, fresh from the just-released update of the United Nations' population forecasts: At constant fertility, Israel will have more young people by the end of this century than either Turkey or Iran, and more than German, Italy or Spain.
With a total fertility rate of three children per woman, Israel's total population will rise to 24 million by the end of the present century. Iran's fertility is around 1.7 and falling, while the fertility for ethnic Turks is only 1.5 (the Kurdish minority has a fertility rate of around 4.5).
Not that the size of land armies matters much in an era of high-tech warfare, but if present trends continue, Israel will be able to field the largest land army in the Middle East. That startling data point, though, should alert analysts to a more relevant problem: among the military powers in the Middle East, Israel will be the only one with a viable population structure by the middle of this century.
That is why it is in America's interest to keep Israel as an ally. Israel is not only the strongest power in the region; in a generation or two it will be the only power in the region, the last man standing among ruined neighbors. The demographic time bomb in the region is not the Palestinian Arabs on the West Bank, as the Israeli peace party wrongly believed, but rather Israel itself.
The right way to read this projection is backwards: Israelis love children and have lots of them because they are happy, optimistic and prosperous. Most of Israel's population increase comes from so-called "secular" Israelis, who have 2.6 children on average, more than any other people in the industrial world. The ultra-Orthodox have seven or eight, bringing total fertility to three children.
Europeans, Turks and Iranians, by contrast, have very few children because they are grumpy, alienated and pessimistic. It's not so much the projection of the demographic future cranked out by the United Nations computers that counts, but rather the implicit vision of the future in the minds of today's prospective parents.
People who can't be bothered to have children presumably have a very dim view of days to come. Reams have been written, to be sure, about Europe's demographic tailspin. Less has been said about Persian pessimism and Anatolian anomie.
Paradoxically, this makes Israel's present position dangerous, for its enemies understand that they have a very brief window in which to encircle the Jewish superpower. The collapse of Egypt and possibly that of Syria shortens this window. Nothing short of American support for a unilateral declaration of a Palestinian state on the 1949 armistice lines followed by economic sanctions against Israel, though, is likely to make a difference, and this seems unlikely.
Israel already is a high-tech superpower. Israeli leads the Group of 7 industrial nations in patent applications. As Professor Reuven Brenner of McGill University wrote in the January 2010 issue of First Things:
Today Israel's venture capital industry still raises more funds than any other venue except the United States. In 2006 alone, 402 Israeli hi-tech companies raised over $1.62 billion - the highest amount in the past five years. That same year, Israel had 80 active venture capital funds and over $10 billion under management, invested in over 1,000 Israeli start-ups.
Maintaining the stunning progress of the past decade will be a challenge, because Israel's high-tech sector received a one-time boost from Russian emigration. As Brenner observes:
Of the million Russians who moved to Israel during the 1980s and 1990s, more than 55 percent had post-secondary education, and more than half held academic and managerial positions in their former country ... This made Israel the world leader in the scientist and engineer workforce, followed by the United States with 80 and Germany with 55 scientists and engineers per 10,000 members of its labor force.
Israel's prowess in the arts matches its accomplishments in technology and business. Israel has become something of a superpower in that most characteristically Western art form, classical music. In a July 21, 2010, survey of Israeli music for the webzine Tablet, I wrote, "Israelis take to classical music - the art form that most clearly creates a sense of the future - like no other people on earth, to the point that music has become part of Israel's character, an embodiment of the national genius for balancing hope and fear."
Israel has one the largest local audience for chamber music recitals of any country in the world, and its leading musicians occupy top slots around the world - for example Guy Braunstein, concertmaster (principal violin) of the Berlin Philharmonic.
This, I believe, explains the implacable hostility of Israel's neighbors, as well as the Europeans. It is the unquenchable envy of the dying towards the living. Having failed at Christianity, and afterward failed at neo-pagan nationalism, Europe has reconciled itself to a quiet passage into oblivion.
Israel's success is a horrible reminder of European failure; its bumptious nationalism grates against Europe's determination to forget its own ugly embrace of nationalism; and its implicitly religious raison d'etre provokes post-Christian rage. Above all, it offends Europe that Israel brims with life. Some of Europe's great nations may not survive the present century. At constant fertility, Israel will have more citizens than any of the Eastern European countries where large numbers of Jews resided prior to the Holocaust.