Earthquakes, Famines and Wars. . .

Earthquakes, Famines and Wars. . .
Vol: 101 Issue: 27 Saturday, February 27, 2010

Back in the early 1990s, we used to do a lot of prophecy conferences. By “we” I mean the Lalonde brothers and the “This Week in Bible Prophecy” television ministry.

I mean, we did them everywhere. (Well, everywhere except where it was snowing.)

In the winter, we found most people preferred to attend conferences in the deep South where it was warm. (And it wasn’t just us, honest. You don’t see a lot of Bible prophecy conference is being held in Maine in mid-February.)

Anyway, at almost every conference, on both coasts, there was this one lady that would come to challenge me with a list of earthquake statistics.

We came to call her “The Earthquake Lady” because she wanted to debate the premise that earthquakes have been on the increase in both frequency and intensity since 1948.

We woke up this morning to news of yet another massive earthquake, this time just outside Concepcion, Chile. The quake measured 8.8 on the Richter scale, making it one of the most powerful in history.

Chile is also the site of the most powerful earthquake ever recorded.  On May 22, 1960, a massive 9.5 temblor struck near Santiago, Chile, killing more than 6000.  The resulting tsunami caused deaths from Japan to Alaska.

The Indonesian earthquake that sponsored the Christmas day tsunami Asia that claimed a quarter million was, by comparison, about a 9.2.

The Indonesian earthquake was so powerful that it rocked the planet, shifted the island of Sumatra by more than 100 meters and actually tore the space time continuum by a millisecond or so.

It’s important to understand what the Richter scale actually measures. Not everybody is a scientist and for some of us, its a little hard to grasp. It is for me.

A 2.0 earthquake is 1000 times as powerful as a 1.0 earthquake. A 9.0 earthquake is 1000 times as powerful as an 8.0. 

Or, expressed in terms of explosive power, an 8.0 earthquake is the equivalent to that generated by a one gigaton underground nuclear explosion.

A 9.0 earthquake is the equivalent to 32 gigatons, a 9.1 to 67, and so on. 

(A kiloton is a thousand tons. A gigaton is a thousand Kilotons.)

So we’re talking a really big earthquake in Chile, coming on the heels of a pretty big earthquake in Haiti. Earthquakes have killed more than a quarter million people so far in 2010, and it’s only February.

The “Earthquake Lady” would always produce charts and graphs to support her contention that earthquakes were not increasing in frequency or intensity, but rather that we were getting better at detecting them.Earthquakes 7.0 or greater in magnitude

I always gave her a respectful hearing and kept an open mind. After all, I wanted to be sure in my own mind that I wasn’t reading Bible prophecy in light of current events, instead of the other way around. 

The major earthquakes of the 21st century have so far been pretty easy to detect, even without special equipment. And all the charts are pretty much in agreement — talk about your ‘hockey stick’!

I had to squeeze the chart down so it would fit — click the chart or click here for the larger image.  

Nobody in Chile needed a seismograph to detect this morning’s temblor.  It released about 800 times more energy than the earthquake that destroyed Haiti.

I often wonder what became of the “Earthquake Lady”. And I wonder, is she still skeptical?

Assessment:

Earthquakes are the big sign that Jesus said to watch for. All the rest of the signs are subjective; “wars and rumors of wars” sounds different from the middle of Saskatchewan than it does from the middle of Israel.

To Israel, a “rumor of war” means keeping one room sealed against potential incoming chemical or biological attack.  To Saskatchewan, a ‘rumor of war’ means they heard of a war . ..  somewhere.

The same can be said for “pestilences” and “famines”; they too, are subjective. Pestilences and famines, like wars, have always been part of the human condition.

So whether or not they’re on the increase depends largely on one’s perspective. If you live in parts of Africa, it isn’t hard to believe famines are increasing.

The same could be said of the sub-Saharan African AIDS epidemic. It is easier to argue increasing pestilence to someone living in South Africa than it is to a person living in Saskatchewan.

Additionally, all the signs are influenced in some way by human activity. So it can be argued, (weakly, I think,) that any increase in frequency or intensity can be explained by the increase in population.

But earthquakes aren’t like that. An earthquake is an earthquake. We have nothing to do with them, and can only replicate, not cause them.

“For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be earthquakes in divers places, and there shall be famines and troubles: these are the beginnings of sorrows.” Mark 8:3

Looking back over the 20th century, one can almost chart the beginning of ‘the beginning of sorrows’. The “War to End All Wars” was actually the beginning of wars capable of ending all life.

That’s why it’s called the FIRST world war. The first two world wars were essentially ethnic European wars; ‘nation against nation’. The Cold War was between two political super-power “kingdoms”.

The Jews were restored to the land of Israel which was recognized by the United Nations in 1948. The frequency and intensity of earthquake activity began to spike at precisely that same point in history.  

I believe there is strong evidence that 1948 started the countdown to the fulfillment of all prophecy in one generation.  The generation that witnessed the rebirth of Israel will witness the return of Christ.

Since all the subjective signs seem to be coming together one would expect an objective, neutral sign like earthquakes to reflect the same trend.

And son of a gun, what do you know?  It does.  In spades.

Major earthquakes began to increase measureably in frequency and intensity in the second half of the 20th century, averaging between 18-25 per decade.

But in the eleven years between 1997 and 2007, the USGS listed 99 earthquakes with magnitude 7.0 or greater.  This is more than a six-fold increase on any previous similar period in history.   

The USGS lists 32 major earthquakes (frequency 6.0 or higher) in 2008.   There were 18 major earthquakes in 2009 (as compared with 18 per decade during the 20th century).  And the five earthquakes of 2010 have claimed more lives than in any one single decade of the last century.

It was only 15 years ago that the Earthquake Lady was making the rounds of prophecy conferences debating an increase in the frequency of earthquakes.

It was only 15 years ago that it took a whole team an entire week to write and produce a single 30 minute television program highlighting apparent fulfillments in Bible prophecy.

Fully half of the time it took to produce each program was spent picking credible examples out of the overall news cycle. 

Today there is enough material for your daily Omega Letter.  Every Monday, I work with Hal Lindsey producing the script for his half-hour television broadcast.

Between the two of us, it takes us about a half a day to produce what it took a whole team five days to assemble only fifteen years ago.

Nobody is arguing against the increasing frequency of earthquakes and natural catastrophes anymore.  The best anyone can do is downplay their significance.

“And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up and lift up your heads, for your redemption draweth nigh.” (Luke 21:28)

You’re NOT imagining it.  It’s all true. Every word. We ARE eyewitnesses to the unfolding Plan of the Ages.  The Lord is coming back. He is coming back soon. And He’s coming back for us first.

We have His Word on it.

Rhymes with ”von Rath”

Rhymes with ”von Rath”
Vol: 101 Issue: 26 Friday, February 26, 2010

According to the Dubai police, there is a “99.9% probability” that the assassination squad that killed Mahmoud Al Mabhouh were all agents of the Israeli Mossad.

That seems to be the default assumption of most of the governments of the world that have since weighed in with their objections concerning the Israeli hit squad’s use of forged passports.

The target of the assassination was a relatively unimportant Hamas operative who had also entered Dubai under a false identity.

Mahmoud Al Mabhouh was certainly wanted by the Israelis, who openly celebrated at the killing of an old enemy

But he was wanted for the killing of two Israeli soldiers 20 years ago. While his death was cause for celebration, it wasn’t worth the risk involved in his assassination on foreign soil.

And despite the automatic assumptions, there remain significant questions about the identification of the hit squad, which consists mainly of the fact that more than half of the fake passports used in Dubai bore the names of Israelis.

As far as I can ascertain from reading the relevant news reports, the only actual arrests made on the scene were of two Palestinians, both members of the Palestinian Authority security services.

That is not to say that the Israelis are above using assassination squads. Indeed, I doubt there’s been a time in Israel’s modern history where Mossad assassins haven’t been kept fully employed.

But if this was a Mossad hit, it was so unbelievably clumsy as to be amateurish.

And bulky.

According to the Dubai police, the operation involved at least 26 operatives all using either stolen or forged passports. As already noted, at least half of them were linked to Israelis. Twenty-six operatives?  The Mossad?  The Israeli Mossad?  

That raises the question: why would Israeli Mossad agents carry so many Israeli linked passports?

At least half of the passports now under examination are not stolen but forged. If these guys can forge their own passports, why would they risk using Israeli passports?

And since they were carrying passports from countries including Britain, France, Ireland, Germany and Australia, again why risk using Israeli passports?

Personally, if I wanted to frame the Mossad, that’s the way I do it. I’d make sure there were plenty of easily-traceable links back to Israel.  

According to the Jerusalem Post, at least three of the Dubai suspects escaped through Iran. (Interesting the way that detail escaped most other news reports.)

I was reading with interest comments made by a former US intelligence official named Patrick Lang, quoted by the Australian broadcasting Corporation.

According to Mr. Lang, the Israeli Mossad is not only incompetent, it is suffering from tunnel vision.

“I certainly think it was the most odd. Israelis, in particular this Israeli government, are obsessed with Hamas and its leadership,” he said.

“They think that if they can kill off enough Hamas leadership than they will be able to make some sort of peace… with the PLO leaders who are now the provisional government of Palestine, really.”

Lang told ABC that he believes the Israeli intelligence operatives ‘badly bungled the assassination’.

Maybe so. But something doesn’t smell right. In fact, nothing does.

Assessment:

So is this a frame up? It’s hard to say, and I don’t want to go that far out on a limb.

Israel is fighting for its life, and the use of assassination squads makes perfect sense if it saves the lives of Israeli soldiers or prevents attacks against Israeli civilians.

So if this isn’t a frame, I don’t want to end up with egg on my face. (Plus, I’d hate to appear that naïve.)

But, if this isn’t a frame, then how the Mossad has survived this long is a mystery to me.

The target wasn’t worth the effort. There were way too many “operatives” involved. And worst of all, it was all traced right back to Israel. They don’t work that way.

This is just way way way too easy. It’s to me, it’s too well wrapped, it’s too, well, it’s just too much. They don’t actually have any of the hit squad in custody.

Again to my knowledge no Israelis have been arrested, just to Palestinian security service officers. So, why would the PA want to assassinate a Palestinian terrorist?

It is worth remembering that the target was also a member of Hamas. The Palestinian Authority had more to gain tactically by his assassination than did the Israelis.

None of this exonerates Israel, or exculpates anyone else; these are merely the facts as we know them.

The old saying “history repeats itself” was modified by Mark Twain to more accurately reflect reality when he observed that “history doesn’t repeat itself, but it rhymes.” 

In 1938, a German diplomat named Ernst Von Rath was fatally shot by a Jewish youth named Herschel Grynszpan at the German Embassy in Paris.

There is reason to believe that von Rath was the victim of a “lover’s quarrel’ but the Nazis found a way to use it to advance their pre-planned agenda.

Goebbels turned it into a ‘Jewish conspiracy’ and launched Kristallnacht, the “night of the broken glass” in reprisal. 

At present, the Syrian/Iran terror axis is looking for any provocation it can use to attack Israel. It would really like to have a credible excuse. . . and something of a free hand. 

What it would not like, as for the governments of Britain, France, Ireland, Germany, Australia, and any other major power, to feel particularly sympathetic toward Israel.

One great way to accomplish that would be to implicate Israel in a diplomatic kerfuffle involving forged national passports used to facilitate assassinations in foreign hotel rooms.  

Self defense against Mossad hit squads isn’t all that credible an excuse for a military attack against Israel. But then, neither was the von Rath assassination much of an excuse for Kristallnacht.

This is hardly the von Rath assassination.  But one can detect a certain rhyme. . .

Syria, Iran Issue Joint Threat To Israel

Syria, Iran Issue Joint Threat To Israel
Vol: 101 Issue: 25 Thursday, February 25, 2010

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad paid another visit to Damascus this week to fan the embers of the war fires he’s been lighting all over the Middle East.

In his latest provocation, Amadinejad held a joint press conference with Bashar al Assad in Damascus. Last year, we stood on the Golan Heights, looking off toward Damascus from just below one of Israel’s border observation posts.

From that observation post along the Israeli border, as we looked out over the abandoned villages of the Golan,  I was struck by the fact I was standing some forty miles from Damascus at that moment.

Forty miles-odd from that Israeli OP to the place from which Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was threatening Israel’s destruction.

Ahmadinejad said Arab nations will usher in a “new” Middle East “without Zionists and without colonialists.”  By “colonialists” Ahamdinejad means, Americans.  

“(The Americans) want to dominate the region but they feel Iran and Syria are preventing that . . . We tell them that instead of interfering in the region’s affairs, to pack their things and leave.”

He said that “if the Zionist regime wants to repeat its past mistakes, this will constitute its demise and annihilation.”

Ahmadinejad said Iran, Syria, Iraq and Lebanon will stand against Israel.

Assad piped in with  typically mindless Arab sloganeering, saying America’s stance on Iran “is a new situation of colonialism in the region.” 

If so, Assad has discovered a new definition for colonialism.”Colonialism” is when a country sends out settlers to start a colony. 

Demanding that lunatics not play with weapons that could eliminate entire nations is not.

The Obama administration seems determined to ‘engage’ with Syria as part of its Middle East peace strategy, but it is a ‘strategy’ in name only. 

The Arab world has been gearing up for war ever since what they view as Israel’s tactical defeat during the 2006 Hezbollah War. 

In recent weeks, the Arabs have started to rachet up the war of words against Israel. 

A couple of weeks ago, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem sent this message via a press conference from Damascus:

“Don’t test the determination of Syria, you Israelis. You know that war this time would move to your cities.”

The threat was so overt as to prompt ABCNews to comment:

“The threatening language implied Syria would be willing and able to target Israeli population centers with long-range missiles in a conflict. It was the first time such a threat had been made.”

Actually, it is only ‘the first time’ if you only get your news from ABCNews. If they boldly go where no ABC reporter has evidently dared to go before (the internet) they’ll discover such threats have been regular fare from Damascus for several years. 

This is only a surprise to the liberal media.  We wrote about the escalating war of words back on February 3rd .UN Resolution 1701 was a joke. Israel went into Lebanon in 2006 to recover two kidnapped Israeli soldiers.  Resolution 1701 made returning them part of the cease-fire agreement. 

Israel was to withdraw, and Hezbollah was to return Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev.  Lebanon was to disarm Hezbollah. Syria was to withraw its forces, cut its supply lines and get out of the Bekaa Valley. 

Israel withdrew. Goldwasser and Regev weren’t returned for another two years. That’s when their families learned they were dead. 

Hezbollah refused to disarm. Lebanon surrendered to Hezbollah. UN peacekeepers ignored Hezbollah and focused their attention on Israeli compliance.

Apparently, Hezbollah feels it has been sufficiently rearmed by Iran and Syria despite the presence of UN ‘peacekeepers’ who were stationed in Lebanon to enforce UN Resolution 1701 that forbade it.

Hezbollah chief Hasan Nasrallah raised the stakes even further last week.

“If you hit Dahiyeh, we will hit Tel Aviv. If you strike Martyr Rafik Hariri International Airport in Beirut, we’ll strike your Ben-Gurion airport in Tel Aviv. . . If you hit our ports, we will hit your ports. If you attack our refineries, we’ll attack your refineries. If you bomb our factories, we’ll bomb your factories.”

Earlier this week, in an address broadcast live Tuesday on Iranian state television, Ahmadinejad again vowed to destroy Israel, saying that,

“If these criminals make the mistake again, the regional countries need to eradicate them once and for all.”

Assessment:

US National Security Advisor James Jones recently addressed the Center for Strategic and International Studies on the prospects for the Middle East in the immediate future.

His comments tended to confirm our earlier assessment  that Iran plans whip things up and use Hamas, Hezbollah and Syria as surrogates.

“When regimes are feeling pressure, as Iran is internally and will externally in the near future, it often lashes out through its surrogates, including, in Iran’s case, Hizbullah in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza. As pressure on the regime in Teheran builds over its nuclear program,” he said, “there is a heightened risk of further attacks against Israel.”

We’ve already flogged the Psalms 83 scenario in previous Omega Letter briefs and we’ve discussed Ezekiel’s Gog-Magog scenario so many times that you can probably recite it from memory. 

Instead, look at the way events are unfolding for the first time.  Remember the sense of awe you that felt the first time you realized you were witnessing the unfolding of Bible prophecy before your eyes.

For many of us, it was that realization that led us to the altar of salvation.  

This is one of those times when all the signs point in one direction and the Bible points in the other.  There are two separate conflicts that take place in the last days.  

Psalms 83 describes a war between Israel and the surrounding Arab states, including Syria, Lebanon, Gaza, Egypt and Jordan.  The Psalms 83 war comes to a decisive end. That is the same conflict foreseen by Isaiah 17’s ‘burden of Damascus.”  

The second great conflict of the last days is the Gog-Magog War.   That conflict involves Iran (Persia) and is equally decisive.  But the two are clearly not the same. 

In Gog Magog, Israel is dwelling at peace and safety.  Israel is currently on its highest state of alert.

In Gog-Magog, Israel is a land of unwalled villages.  Currently, Israel is walling up villages with its security barrier.

In Gog-Magog, the attack against Israel catches everyone by surprise.  I doubt that anybody will be very surprised to hear of a Syrian-Hezbollah-Hamas attack against Israel.  Shocked, maybe.  But hardly surprised. 

The Iranians and Syrians and Hamas and Hezbollah spokespersons have left little doubt of their intentions.

Since this is NOT Gog-Magog, then Persia (Iran) must somehow survive to meet its appointment with destiny against the mountains of Israel together with its patron (Russia), Turkey and and a number of other states equally unlikely to get involved here.

None of the Gog-Magog nations are numbered among the Psalms 83/Isaiah 17 nations and vice-versa. 

I don’t know if this IS the Psalms 83/Isaiah 17 conflict or just another dress rehearsal. 

But we need to pray for our OL brothers and sisters trapped behind enemy lines in Damascus,  Beirut, and elsewhere. We need to pray for the Israelis who have already seen far too much war and destruction.  

And we need to pray for each other.  There are scary times ahead.

Behold The Fig Tree

Behold The Fig Tree
Vol: 101 Issue: 24 Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The supreme spiritual authority of the Palestinian Authority, Sheikh Taisar Tamimi, ruled that Arabs who work in Jewish construction are ‘traitors’ deserving of imprisonment.

The ruling also includes Arabs who take part in archaeological digs by the Israel Antiquities Authority in eastern Jerusalem, or who work with other Jewish organizations in the old city of Jerusalem.

The fatwa also forbids Arabs from doing business or working with “settlers” – Jewish residents of Judea, Samaria or eastern Jerusalem. 

Sheikh Tamimi is the President of the PA’s Sharia Moslem religious courts. His fatwa, or religious edict, gives special emphasis to the archaeological digs on the Temple Mount.

Tamimi’s fatwa declared that “traitors to Islam and to their homeland” must be punished with “severe and difficult prison sentences,” saying Israeli construction and archaeological works are designed only to “Judaize Jerusalem.”

Last August, Tamimi condemned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, as well as “all Jewish rabbis and extremist organizations,” for lying and asserting that Jerusalem was a Jewish city. 

PA President Mahmoud Abbas threatened a “religious” war against Israel.  The reason? Because Israel added the Cave of the Patriarchs and Rachel’s Tomb to its list of heritage sites to be preserved and protected.

Why would the PA freak out over Israel wanting to preserve the burial site Abraham, Isaac and Joseph?  Because Islam claims the same three patriarchs as theirs, as recorded in the Old Testament. 

Hmmm.  Makes the whole concept of two states living side-by-side and at peace somewhat problematic, doesn’t it? 

Nobody on either side is even pretending anymore. 

The Palestinians have stopped pretending the objective was ever peace with Israel and the Israelis have stopped pretending they believed the Palestinians weren’t pretending all along.

Last week, Israeli archeologists reported the discovery of a wall dating to the time of Solomon and David. 

The current secular historical view is that King David and King Solomon never actually existed, but were mythical figures, sort of like King Arthur and Sir Lancelot. 

That is the view championed by the Palestinians and their apologists.

The discovery of this wall running as close as it does to Temple Mount supports the Bible’s account of a powerful kingdom centered in Jerusalem near Temple Mount 3000 years ago, when the Bible says David bought the Temple Mount from Araunah the Jebusite (Samuel 24:24).

That argues against the popular depiction of Israel as an invading and occupying force bent on stealing ‘traditional Palestinian’ land. 

Assessment:

Taking advantage of this generation’s willingness to rewrite history without a backward look,
organizad Islam only recently started denying the pre-existence of a Jewish state in the land of Israel.  

I am personally astonished at how many people have actually come to believe that modern Israel ‘stole’ the land from the ‘indigenous’ Arabs.

There are entire Christian denominations that have divested themselves from all things Israeli — in solidarity with the Palestinians as if Israel had no legitimate claim whatsoever.

If today’s Israel is not the Israel of antiquity, then where did all these Jews come from? Israeli Jews aren’t like Americans — there was no such people as ‘American’s 300 years ago.

Americans are the descendents of settlers from all countries and all races who immigrated to this continent from their mother countries. 

That doesn’t describe the Jews that immigrated to Israel from the Diaspora. There were Jews that populated all of these mother countries.  There were Jews before America’s mother countries even existed.

If those Jews didn’t originally come from Israel, where did they come from? 

It sounds like a bone-headed question. Like asking, “Who is buried in Grant’s tomb?” But contained in the answer is the solution to the entire Middle East peace process — if anyone were actually interested in solving it fairly.

The issue in contention is the legitimacy of the Jewish state. If the Jews didn’t come from Israel, where did they come from?  Roman records say there was an Israel.

Insofar as it is possible to make comparisons, there is no historical contradictions between official Roman records and the historical record offered by the Bible. 

The Romans say there were Jews in Judea, later renamed ‘Palestina’ by the same Romans. There were Jews in AD 70 that were scattered into the Diaspora by the Romans.  There have been Jews that have popped up in the historical record of every nation throughout history.

There is no possible way to sever the Jews from Judea in AD 70 or to recognize it’s renaming as ‘Palestina’ without acknowledging what it was renamed from — “Judea” named for the Tribe of Judah, the survivor of David’s Israel, forever after known as Jews.

I’ve read lots of fanciful attempts to do so, all of which require impossible numbers of conspirators acting over generations and centuries to steal the identity of Jews.

They stole the identity of the Jews — and the ghettos in medieval Europe, down through the eastern pogroms and of course, the European Holocaust.  Yeah. Right.

But that’s one theory.  There are as many others as credulity will allow. There is no historical people of antiquity whose origins, history, customs, culture and religious identity is more carefully documented or uniquely defined than that of the Jews.

Every argument that advances the theory that today’s Jews aren’t the Jews of antiquity simply ignores the question, “where did these Jews come from?” as if it were irrelevant.

And if today’s Jews aren’t the legitimate possessors of their mother country, then where IS their ‘mother country?’  Is there ANOTHER historically defined race of people that DON’T have a mother country?

Every people can point to where their ancestors came from.  It is what defines them.  The Irish are from Ireland — that’s why they aren’t called Norwegians — because Norwegians are from Norway. 

All this should be painfully obvious to those Christian denominations that stand against Israel and support divestiture and so on.  And since it should be, then it is — and they choose to ignore it for reasons inexplicable in the natural.

The only remaining explanation falls more into the category of supernatural. That Israel is hated is without question.  But nobody is hated without cause.  Except Israel.

Israel has given the world no cause to hate her. Throughout her history, she has simply reacted — there is even a word for hating Jews without cause.  It’s called antiSemitism.

There are those who would try to draw a line or a distinction between anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism. That line only exists in academic theory.

An anti-Semite doesn’t like Zionists and not many anti-Zionists like Jews. That there are exceptions only reinforces the existence of the rule.

As I said from the outset, it is inexplicable in the natural.  But it is the situation predicted by Scripture, not just for the last days, but for the past two thousand years.

Jew-hatred transcends the natural because it is supernatural.  The world hates Israel because it stands as a visible reminder of the existence of the God of the Bible. 

Israel’s existence forces the world to consider the possibility of God’s existence, and therefore of their own accountability before Him. 

So the world hates Israel with a supernatural hatred, inexplicable even to themselves. 

“And He spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree, and all the trees; When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand.

So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand.

Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled.” (Luke 21:29-32)

There is to my mind no more powerful argument favoring the reality of Israel’s God or the soon return of His Son for His Bride than the impossible scenario that exists today.  Which means the Lord is coming.

It’s the only explanation that makes sense.

Fellowship Note:

Long-time OL member and our dear brother Bob Woodward broke his hip in a fall recently.  Please join us in prayer for Bob’s speedy recovery.  Visit our members-only praise and prayer forums for more information.

The John Wayne Fan Club

The John Wayne Fan Club
Vol: 101 Issue: 23 Tuesday, February 23, 2010

One can classify all religions into but one of two categories.  There is the religion of works; Romanism, Islam, Humanism, Shintoism, Confucianism, Buddhism,  etc — and the ‘religion’ of Biblical Christianity.

I use the term ‘religion’ in its broadest possible application so as to include Christianity, although Christianity does not rightly qualify as a ‘religion’.  

Biblical Christianity is not a religion — it is a blood relationship

“Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his Lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of My Father I have made known unto you.” (John 15:15)

What is the difference?  By way of analogy,  it is unlikely that there are many of our members who are unfamiliar with the late John Wayne.  

Most likely, you were fans.   (I still can’t resist a good John Wayne movie — they don’t make ’em like that any more.)

That’s what religion is like — like being a John Wayne fan.  You can positively love John Wayne and have all of his movies.   You can even be the head of John Wayne’s fan club.   

But you never really knew John Wayne.   More importantly,  John Wayne didn’t know you.  You felt you knew him,  and you certainly loved him.   (I know I did.)  

When John Wayne died, I felt I had lost a role model — and even something of a mentor.   But I didn’t know him.   He didn’t know me.  We didn’t have a relationship.  We weren’t friends.

On the other hand, John Wayne’s children knew him and he knew them.  The world thought they knew John Wayne, but only his kids knew their Daddy.   

All religions are the same in the sense that they are like John Wayne fan clubs (no disrespect intended) — formed along the lines of what they think will make them acceptable to their Deity. 

The rituals and rules and admission requirements are as complex as the religion itself — and they are, by and large, rules and requirements that evolved over the centuries.

Put another way, religion is a word that describes man’s way of making himself acceptable to his Deity by his works.  

On the other hand, Christianity is a relationship with God in which He makes you acceptable by His works. 

Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ: (Philippians 1:6)

One scenario makes you a member of a fan club.  The other makes you a member of the family. 

Assessment:

He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it.”  

For some of you, this is a boring Sunday school lesson.  For others, it is a sudden and somewhat jarring revelation.    

Notice your role in the ‘good work’ of salvation — you don’t do it. You are it.

Religion promises to teach you how to conform to the image of God’s Son — according to narrowly defined rules and regulations drawn from various Scriptures. 

“For whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. ” (Romans 8:29)

Paul says I will be conformed.  The dictionary defines the verb tense of ‘conformed’ this way — “To bring into agreement or correspondence; make similar.”

And Jesus began the good
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work in me.  He will perform that good work.  My job is to get out of His way and let Him. 

How do I know?  The Bible tells me so.  Religion tells me different.

Religious Christianity misses the forest entirely, but can identify every individual tree contained in it.   They know of God and they know of His Son.

They profess to love God and they profess to love His Son.  And they do — after a fashion. 

But more often than not, it is love in the sense that I ‘loved’ John Wayne the actor than in the sense that John Wayne’s kids loved their dad.

That is what makes the Christian relationship unique — and it is also what proves it to be true.   Man can dream up all kinds of ways in which he would like to be worshipped.  

That’s why there are so many religions, both inside and outside of organized Christianity.

After all, the natural man is of his father, with whom a genuine relationship also exists: “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do.” – (John 8:44)

While man can dream up all kinds of pomp and circumstance and rules for membership and so on and all that is reflected by religion — it is devoid of relationship. 

In a religion, everything is pre-planned and outlined in advance. ‘God is this,  you are that, you must therefore do this because . . . ‘

A relationship is unique in that it develops into a relationship as Jesus begins to perform the good work in you of conforming you to His image. 

The Omega Letter’s mission is not to dazzle anybody with prophetic parlor games so much as it is to equip the saints with answers for the questions that we all encounter in our daily encounters with unbelievers. 

The difference between religion and relationship is one I believe is worth having in the ol’ toolbox. 

“But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:”

I don’t have to constantly wonder if I am saved. I’m not a member of the King’s fan club.  

I’m a member of the Family.   

Enemies of the State

Enemies of the State
Vol: 101 Issue: 22 Monday, February 22, 2010

Tucked away somewhere in a building in Jefferson City, Missouri is an organization known as the Missouri Information Analysis Center, or MIAC for short. 

MIAC was opened in 2005 and serves as a self-described “fusion center” that  combines resources from the federal Department of Homeland Security and other agencies. It was set up by DHS “to collect local intelligence to better combat terrorism and other criminal activity” as a division of the Missouri State Police.

“Missouri Information Analysis Center (MIAC) provides a public safety partnership consisting of local, state and federal agencies, as well as the public sector and private entities that will collect, evaluate, analyze, and disseminate information and intelligence to the agencies tasked with Homeland Security responsibilities in a timely, effective, and secure manner,”explains the MIAC website.”

“As of February 2009, there were 58 fusion centers around the country. The Department has deployed 31 officers as of December 2008 and plans to have 70 professionals deployed by the end of 2009. The Department has provided more than $254 million from FY 2004-2007 to state and local governments to support the centers,” explains the Department of Homeland Security on its website.”

 Missouri is mentioned as a “participant” in this federal “intelligence” effort. 

 Nobody had heard about the MIAC until about a year ago when the MIAC issued a report on domestic terrorism.  The report was focused on the threat posed by the the so-called “militia movement” last heard of in the mid-1990’s.

 In the 1990’s, the “militia movement” grew to describe the growing grass-roots backlash to the Janet Reno Justice Department’s Gestapo-like tactics at Waco, Texas and Ruby Ridge, Idaho.   

 The militia movement was the liberal media’s sinister name for the larger, unorganizatd and non-violent ‘Patriot Movement’ that was on track to become the Clinton version of the Tea Party ‘movement’ currently giving the Obama administration heartburn.

 After the bombing of the Alfred P Murrah building in 1995 was linked to Tim McVeigh and Tim McVeigh linked to various militia and ‘patriot’ groups,  calling oneself a ‘patriot’ was linked back to Tim McVeigh, stopping the movement’s momentum in its tracks.

 The MIAC report reincarnated the “militia movement” boogeyman.  MIAC claims members of a “rightwing” militia movement organized in the 1990s — “continuously exploit world events in order to increase participation in their movements.”

 “Due to the current economical and political situation, a lush environment for militia activity has been created” and supposedly exploited by “constitutionalists” and “white supremacists.”

 The MIAC report profiled domestic terrorists as those opposed to the North American Union, Obama’s proposed “Universal Service Corps”,  the implementation of RFID,  what it calls “the Christian Identity Movement”, white nationalists, anti-abortion activists, income tax resisters, opponents of the UN, and ‘apocalyptic’ Christians that believe these are the end times.

 According to the profile, a guy with a “Ron Paul for President”and a “Christians For Pro-Life”  bumper sticker on the same car  is a domestic terrorist-in-waiting

 Noted The American Thinker:

“Were this an isolated incident, it would be easy to dismiss. But couple this with some other politically motivated incidents, such as Barack Obama`s “truth squad” in which he encouraged the prosecution of people who protested him too aggressively (bear in mind he had St. Louis Prosecuting attorney Jennifer Joyce and St. Louis County`s Bob McCullugh on the squad, as well as a number of Democrats holding high positions in law enforcement statewide), along with Obama`s proposal for a national militia trained and funded like one of the branches of the military, and you have a very disturbing trend here.

Assessment: 

Those who would trade essential freedoms for a little security deserve neither . . . ” – Benjamin Franklin.

Last week, a disturbed man with a beef with the IRS set his house on fire and then flew his airplane into the IRS office in Austin that housed the IRS Collections Department.  The guy left behind a ‘manifesto’ of sorts that the liberal mainstream is using to link the guy to the Tea Party movement. 

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said over the weekend that domestic terrorism is now as big a concern as international terrorists.  

Quoting the Associated Press report:

“The government is just starting to confront this reality and does not have a good handle on how to prevent someone from becoming a violent extremist, she said. In the last year, Napolitano said, she’s witnessed a movement from international extremism to domestic extremism – cases in which Americans radicalized and decided to plot attacks against the country. ”  

She used examples of Muslim terrorism on TV, but all the training manuals and warning memos issued by the DHS are in the same vein as the MIAC.  The real threat comes from so-called ‘patriots’.  

 South Carolina recently passed the “Subversive Activities Registration Act which mandates, (read it carefully) 

“Every member of a subversive organization, or an organization subject to foreign control, every foreign agent and every person who advocates, teaches, advises or practices the duty, necessity or propriety of controlling, conducting, seizing or overthrowing the government of the United States … shall register with the Secretary of State.” 

I emphatically oppose overthrowing the government of the United States.  But under this law, Thomas Jefferson would be required to register within ten days or be declared a domestic terrorist subject to a $25,000 fine and ten years in prison.

“But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security . . . Thomas Jefferson, The Declaration of Independence,(2nd paragraph)

Whew!  Thomas Jefferson is a subversive under South Carolina law!  According to his DHS profile,  Thomas Jefferson is a prime candidate for becoming a domestic terrorist. (I thought profiling was illegal?)

Yesterday, I was reading through the prayer of the afflicted recorded in Lamentations 5:1-8.

“Remember O LORD, what is come upon us, consider, and behold our reproach.
Our inhertance is turned unto strangers, our houses to aliens
We are orphans and fatherless, our mothers are as widows.
We have drunk our water at a price, our wood is SOLD to us.
Our necks are under persecution, we labor and have no rest. 
We have given the hand to the Egyptians and to the Assyrians, to be satisfied with bread. 
Our fathers have sinned, and are not: and we have borne their iniquities. Servants have ruled over us: there is none that does deliver us out of their hand.”

09 Lima

09 Lima
Vol: 101 Issue: 20 Saturday, February 20, 2010

The American Family Association has published an article on its website calling for Muslims to be barred from military service.

Bryan Fischer, AFA’s Director of Issues Analysis, argues that the Fort Hood shootings are a signal that “It is time to stop the practice of allowing Muslims to serve in the U.S. military”:

[T]he more devout a Muslim is, the more of a threat he is to national security. Devout Muslims, who accept the teachings of the Prophet as divinely inspired, believe it is their duty to kill infidels….

Of course, most U.S. Muslims don’t shoot up their fellow soldiers. Fine. As soon as Muslims give us a foolproof way to identify their jihadis from their moderates, we’ll go back to allowing them to serve. You tell us who the ones are that we have to worry about, prove you’re right, and Muslims can once again serve. Until that day comes, we simply cannot afford the risk. You invent a jihadi-detector that works every time it’s used, and we’ll welcome you back with open arms.

This is not Islamophobia, it is Islamo-realism….

And just as Christians are taught to imitate the life of Christ, so Muslims are taught to imitate the Prophet in all things. Major Nidal Malik Hasan was simply being a good Muslim.

General George Casey, the Army’s chief of staff offered this bizarre comment at the time:

“Our diversity… is a strength. As great a tragedy as this was, it would be a shame if our diversity became a casualty as well.”

Assessment:

General Casey’s ‘diversity’ comment immediately grabbed my attention.  I looked up ‘diversity’ and one of its antonyms (dictionary: “a word of opposite meaning) is “unity.”

It would be a shame if America’s military disunity became a casualty? Has everyone gone mad?

Noted Fischer in his piece:

The military is not about social engineering or diversity or multiculturalism or about proving what open-minded people we are. It’s about being ready to break things and kill people so that Americans can sleep securely in their beds at night.

The mission is too important to be compromised by enlisting possible jihadi warriors and giving them the weapons and training to gun down our own soldiers and paying them all the while.

As soldiers were deploying in Kuwait in preparation for the invasion of Iraq, Army Sgt. Asan Akbar lobbed three grenades into tents housing the 101st Airborne.  One officer was killed and fifteen others were wounded.

Major Nidal Hassan’s ranting and raving about chopping off the heads of infidels was so blatant that, had he been anything OTHER than a Muslim, he would have been court-martialed.

Due to the Army’s counter-intuitive dedication to ‘diversity’ — everybody was afraid to speak up for fear of being labeled an “Islamophobe.” Instead, he was fast-tracked for promotion to major.

That’s an interesting word, ‘Islamophobe.’  It means “an overwhelming and unreasonable fear of Islam.”

One wonders if the soldiers at Fort Hood scrambling to avoid being shot by Major Hassan were exhibiting ‘unreasonable’ fear? 

If the fear is ‘unreasonable’ — given the Islamic-inspired havoc and destruction that has been wreaked against innocent Americans so far — then I am at a loss for an example of what would be ‘reasonable’ fear.

Ali A. Mohamed, formerly, a major in the Egyptian army, immigrated to the U.S. in 1986 and joined the U.S. Army as a resident alien. This, despite being on a State Department terrorist watch list before securing his visa.

An avowed Islamist, he taught classes on Muslim culture to U.S. Special Forces at Fort Bragg, N.C., and obtained classified military documents. He was granted U.S. citizenship over the objections of the CIA.

He later became a member of al-Qaeda and a close associate of Osama bin Laden who was involved with the US Embassy bombings in Africa.

Semi Osman, an ethnic Lebanese born in Sierra Leone and a Seattle-based Muslim cleric, served in a naval reserve fueling unit based in Tacoma, Wash.

Osman was arrested last May as part of a federal investigation into the establishment of a terrorist training camp in Bly, Oregon.

John Muhammed, the Beltway Sniper served with the Army’s 84th Engineers. In an eerie parallel to the Akbar case, Muhammad is suspected of throwing a thermite grenade into a tent housing 16 of his fellow soldiers as they slept before the ground-attack phase of Gulf War I in 1991.

Hassan Abujihaad, a Muslim American sailor who cheered the terrorist attack on the USS Cole has been charged with supporting terrorism with intent to kill U.S. citizens and transmitting classified information while serving about the USS Benfold.

In January, a Muslim interpreter employed by the US Army in Afghanistan shot and killed two US service members and another civilian contractor.  The Army said the killings were the result of a “disgruntled employee” and denied any linkage to Islam.

This week, there were reports of five Muslim soldiers from Fort Jackson, SC who were arrested for plotting to poison the fort’s food supply.

The five were part of the Arabic Translation program at the base called 09 Lima. The 09 Lima program is a program to train foreign-born Arabic translators on US military customs and courtesy, military regulations, and to bring their English up to speed.

Any member of 09 Lima who serves a single day in Iraq or Afghanistan earns a fast-track to American citizenship. 

During the Second World War, it wasn’t bigotry to view all Nazis as potential enemies. Even members of the American Nazi Party.   

During the Cold War, it wasn’t bigotry to view all Communists as a threat to liberty and freedom. Even members of the American Communist Party. 

Indeed, I would submit to you that members of the American Nazi and Communist Parties were as great a threat to liberty as were the Waffen-SS or the KGB.

One might argue that it is the jihadis themselves that are enemies of the West, not Islam.  That is like arguing that it was the German soldiers that were the threat to world peace in 1940, not the Nazi ideology that inspired them.  

The jihadis are Islamic fundamentalists — even moderate Islamics would agree with that label — they are the ones that draw the distincition. But a religious ‘fundamentalist’ of any religion is one who strictly obeys the fundamental, or foundational teachings of that religion.  

Based on his record of adherence to the fundamantals of Islam, Osama is an example of a ‘good’ Muslim, whereas an Americanized Muslim serving honorably in the US military would be viewed by fundamentalists as an apostate.

It is a testimony to the West’s willingness to embrace dhimmitude, (all the while pretending that fearing Islam is unreasonable),  that merely quoting Fischer’s comments could well qualify as ‘hate speech’ in any number of jurisdictions.

Geert Wilders is on trial in the Netherlands for “inciting racial hatred” against Muslims by producing a film entitled “Fitna” about Islam’s intentions for the West.

Islam, both a religion and a political worldview, is now suddenly elevated to the status of being a ‘race’.

The Court has already ruled that the fact Wilder’s statements are demonstrably true is no defense to prosecution.  

This might not be a religious war — from the perspective of the Western governments — and especially the perspective of the Obama administration.

The enemy is laboring under no such delusion.   But they are certainly glad that we are.