“this is eternal life”

Friday, December 8, 2017

If you love Christ and believe Him in heart, mind, soul and strength, then, “magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together” (Psa. 34:3). “The Lord reigns; let the earth rejoice; let the multitude of the isles be glad” (Psa. 97:1). “Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name” (Heb. 13:5).

“Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; let the sea roar, and all its fullness…For He is coming, for He is coming to judge the earth. He shall judge the world with righteousness, and the peoples with His truth” (Psa. 96:11–13). “For behold, the day is coming, burning like an oven, and all the proud, yes, all who do wickedly will be stubble. And the day which is coming shall burn them up” (Mal. 4:1).

“Behold, the day of the Lord comes, cruel, with both wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate; and He will destroy its sinners from it. For the stars of heaven and their constellations will not give their light; the sun will be darkened in its going forth, and the moon will not cause its light to shine. I will punish the world for its evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; I will halt the arrogance of the proud, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible” (Isa. 13:9–11).

In the dread of the great tribulation God has a place of safety and provision for those who believe Him. “Come, my people, enter your chambers, and shut your doors behind you; hide yourself, as it were, for a little moment, until the indignation is passed. For behold the Lord comes out of His place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity” (Isa. 26:20–21). Think Passover, and, “That which has been is what will be…there is nothing new under the sun” (Eccl. 1:9).

“Then the woman [that is, “the freewoman” (Gal. 4:21–31), the prepared, discerning, watching and waiting true church] fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, that they should feed her there [3 1/2 years] one thousand two hundred and sixty days” (Rev. 12:6). Many profess being of “the freewoman” but their traditions of unbelief belie their profession.

Are you prepared for that day? Have you confessed Christ and repented of your sins and unbelief? Are you certain that in that terrible day to come your Advocate will be Christ because you have been born again unto eternal life? “And this is eternal life, that they [you and I] may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent” (John 17:3).

Now this breaking news event from ARUTZ SHEVA, 12/05/2017, “Embassy waiver lapses – is embassy move underway?” The article continues, “The security waiver used by every president since Bill Clinton to avoid implementation of a 1995 law requiring the US embassy in Israel be relocated to the capital city of Jerusalem lapsed Monday night amid speculation President Donald Trump could officially recognize the city as Israel’s capital or even announce an embassy move as early as this week.”

David Rosenberg, the editor of ARUTZ SHEVA, closes the article by saying, “I can’t see any legal way out of this, the President has begun the process of moving the American Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Trump has finally corrected 70 years of discriminatory policy towards Israel, make no mistake; this is huge!”

This past Wednesday the world awoke to electrifying headlines that U.S. President Trump has recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital city! David Rosenberg’s assertion that “this is huge” is an understatement. Breaking Israel News’ 12/07/2017 headline said, “TRUMP’S JERUSALEM DECLARATION PAVES WAY FOR THIRD TEMPLE.” Orthodox Jews desperately want their Third Temple in which they will again offer animal sacrifices, see Revelation 11:1.

The BIN article continued, “President Donald Trump’s epic proclamation on Wednesday acknowledging Jerusalem as the eternal capital of the Jewish people was a major step towards establishing the Third Temple and bringing the Messianic era, said a number of Jewish activists working to rebuild the Holy Temple.” Of course, the messiah for whom Orthodox Jews wait, will be none other than Antichrist who drafts a false seven-year peace “covenant with many”.

Fox News, 12/06/2017, had this headline: “Hamas plans ‘day of rage’ in response to Trump’s Jerusalem decision.” The terror group, Hamas, said, “We call on the people of Palestine to declare ‘rage day’ on Friday against Israel, denying the U.S. plan to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital,” the statement read.”

Advancing the end-times by formally acknowledging Jerusalem as the capital of Israel gives Israel cause to celebrate its 70th anniversary as that nation which was reborn on May 14, 1948. As a consequence of that rebirth, “this generation will by no means pass away till all these things [Antichrist, the falling away, the great tribulation and rapture] take place” (Matt. 24:34).

This event will likely embolden Antichrist, “the man of sin…the son of perdition” (2 Thess. 2:3) to craft the biblically required, seven-year peace “covenant with many” (Dan. 9:27) which will trigger the beginning of the seven-year tribulation. We will soon find out, for we live in very exciting times; times that God’s Holy Spirit called end-time “labor pains” (1 Thess. 5:3).

God said, “Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples, when they lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem. And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it” (Zech. 12:2–3). We will see this!

Will you ascend the holy highway of testimony for Jesus to your lost neighbors, friends and co-workers when they see the Middle East explode with violence that extends globally? This is just one reason why knowing God’s prophetic truths is so important, to help people believe the truth of God’s offer and free gift of salvation, for He “desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim. 2:4).

Yes, amen! “Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; let the sea roar, and all its fullness; let the field be joyful, and all that is in it…For He is coming, for He is coming to judge the earth. He shall judge the world with righteousness, and the peoples with His truth” (Psa. 96:11–13).

Marlin J. Yoder

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“yesterday, today, and forever”

Friday, December 1, 2017

Seeing disunity and compromise in Christ’s “one body” (Eph. 4:4), God said through Paul, “Now I say this, that each of you says, ‘I am of Paul,’ or ‘I am of Apollos,’ or ‘I am of Cephas,’ or ‘I am of Christ.’ Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?” (1 Cor. 1:12–13). In Christ, there’s no disunity or compromise of His truths.

Having been in the structural steel fabrication industry for over forty years, I know the importance of by-the-book (AISC Manual of Steel Construction) qualified structural steel engineering data that governs the grade, design, fabrication and erection of structural steel. Disunity in calculations is unacceptable, and compromise of steel grade, connection design and fabrication is intolerable.

Though it’s never occurred in my structural steel fabrication business, there are structural steel failures that cause delays, cost overruns and sometimes death to people. For example, on July 17, 1981, “The Hyatt Regency walkway collapse took place at the Hyatt Regency Kansas City hotel in Kansas, Missouri. Two vertically contiguous walkways collapsed onto a tea dance being held in the hotel’s lobby. The falling walkways killed 114 and injured 216.” (Wikipedia)

Earlier in that building process, “The construction of the 40-story Hyatt Regency Kansas City [suffered] delays and setbacks, including an incident on October 14, 1979, when 2,700 square feet (250 m2) of the atrium roof collapsed due to the failure of one of the connections at its northern end, [but] the hotel officially opened on July 1, 1980.” (Wikipedia)

The first instance of a structural collapse on October 14, 1979 should have been a red flag sufficient to immediately terminate the services of the structural PE team. But disunity and compromise were permitted until less than two years later when the hotel was in use by the public, the tragically unnecessary death and critical injury of many people occurred.

I share the above illustration to say this: if the passing and temporal criteria of structural design is critically important to the safety and security of people, of how much greater importance is the by-the-Book (The Holy Bible) and its design criteria given by Almighty God for the safe passage of people from this life to their eternal destiny! The eternal is much more important.

But Satan has deceptively and masterfully used division to conquer. Take a look around and ask yourself why you attend the church you attend when there’s a smorgasbord of divided churches to choose from. No matter which Christian denomination you choose, it’s divided in matters of interpretation, doctrine, tradition, gifts, baptisms, etc. etc. against its neighbor up the street.

Yet they all use the same Book! They’re divided by the names or groups of men who created those denominations centuries and decades ago! Have you asked, why? Does it bother you? It should. Which one has the right doctrine? How do you know? Why do so few teach Christ’s prophetic meat of the Word while the majority ignore it? Like the failed Hyatt Regency data above, the majority of churches have compromised Christ’s prophetic design data of safety.

The Hyatt Regency walkway had the appearance of having structural integrity, but when live loads were applied, it proved to lack the connection integrity sufficient to its intended purpose. So too, many Christians have a confident appearance of spiritual integrity, but not being equipped in the knowledge of prophetic truths, will find that their profession of faith and connection to God is insufficient to its intended purpose. Now is the time to change that.

For, what’s the end result when the stress design of the tribulation sets upon the church? “And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another” (Matt. 24:10). This final generation is being taught by many pastors that God is love, grace, love, and more love. But the God of the Bible is love, mercy, grace AND justice, judgment and wrath.

What’s your design criteria for attending one church versus another? Does your flesh like what you hear? Not good! Maybe the entertaining light, smoke and sound show? Not good! The hip pastor? Maybe a little Bible but more of other books/programs? Or do you hear flesh-crucifying soul-searching truths that build more of Christ in you, truths that mature you in Christ “leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ” (Heb. 6:1) which is so vitally important?

To navigate your way through the maze of end-time churches is not easy, but you must do it. For the sake of your eternal soul you must do it. For the love of God and fellowman you must do it. For the sake of your loved ones, do it. It was Jesus Christ Himself, who said, “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man’s enemies will be those of his own household” (Matt. 10:34–36).

Please note that, spiritually, the Matt. 10:34–36 passage relates directly to God commanding the Levitical priesthood of ancient Israel at the Mt. Sinai rebellion, saying, “Let every man put his sword on his side, and go in and out from entrance to entrance throughout the camp, and let every man kill his brother, every man his companion, and every man his neighbor” (Exo. 32:27). And here’s the New Covenant counterpart: “He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me” (Matt. 10:37–38).

Here’s the application of those texts: if we favor our child, spouse, friend or tradition over the commands and teachings of God in Christ, we actively join in the idolatrous rebellion at the foot of Mt. Sinai when ancient Israel worshiped the gold idol Aaron made for them! Truly, God said, “I am the Lord, I do not change” (Mal. 3:6). And the Holy Spirit said, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Heb. 13:8).

We who are in Christ Jesus by faith are the O.T. Levitical priesthood counterpart, for, “you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people…who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy” (1 Peter 2:9–10). As such, we love God and fellowman, and prepare to endure to the end.

Though there are thousands of Christian churches, there is only “one body” (Eph. 4:4). Though there are millions of professing Christians, “many are called but few are chosen” (Matt. 22:14). Though many claim faith in Christ, Jesus said, “wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matt. 7:13–14).

There are voluminous prophetic design details awaiting your discovery of things to come before Christ gathers together His saints. Unfortunately, due to its false pre-trib rapture tradition, much of the church has taught the people to actually disbelieve that Christ gathers His saints only once “Immediately after the tribulation” (Matt. 24:29–31) as Jesus Christ taught.

I pray you have spiritual eyes to see and a discerning heart to know that influential men, putting forth their own interests, have divided the one body of Christ. But what are you doing to protect yourself and your loved ones from being deceived by divisive church doctrines, traditions and compromise that has created such a splintered church? As for me and my house, God’s Word, and not divisive theological powers, is preparing us to endure to the end as Christ taught.

Marlin J. Yoder

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“every eye will see Him”

Friday, November 24, 2017,

In this national season of Thanksgiving for God’s blessings, we Christians ought to give thanks every day for “God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love in which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ…and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast” (Eph. 2:4–9). With that backdrop, consider that God also said…

…“Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near…Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen. ‘I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,’ says the Lord, ‘who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty’” (Rev. 1:3, 7–8).

God’s promise is blessing for “he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy”; that is, The Revelation of Jesus Christ. Yet, The Revelation is one of the most ignored Books of the Bible today. Why – because many cannot discern that the end-times are upon us, and also leadership fears losing people, money and popularity if all biblical end-time truths are taught.

If the time of Christ’s return was “near” 2,000 years ago, how much closer are we now to The Revelation of Jesus Christ, than then! The signs are everywhere. And God said, “do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day” (2 Peter 3:8). Therein, it’s been only about two days since Christ suffered Calvary!

“Blow the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in My holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble; for the day of the Lord is coming, for it is at hand” (Joel 2:1). “How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?” (Rom. 10:14).

Some say I’ve been teaching the end-times for many years and nothing has come of it. But having spiritual eyes that saw and ears that heard, Christ’s apostles taught the same truths two millennia ago. They did not entangle themselves with pleasing men. The late David Wilkerson, Founding Pastor of Times Square Church, New York, NY, equally scorned a culture-pleasing message and sharply warned the church of the end-times and God’s imminent judgments.

Last week’s CBN article I shared stating that a former Google executive started a church called “Way of the Future” and its “worship of a Godhead based on Artificial Intelligence (AI)…and through understanding and worship of the Godhead, contribute to the betterment of society”, is very significant in light of Rev. 13:11–15. The “mark of the beast” (Rev. 13:16–17), and “image to the beast” (Rev. 13:15), being “a foreign god” (Dan. 11:38–39), are now being prepared.

As Antichrist develops his “image”, the church largely acquiesces, being a mirror of ancient Israel in Babylon bowing down to King Nebuchadnezzar’s image, see Daniel 3. Antichrist’s spirit is stealthily deceiving many Christians, like the frog in the kettle not knowing destruction is imminent. The snare of Antichrist is coming with humanistic legitimacy, and “when they say, ‘Peace and safety!’ then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape” (1 Thess. 5:3). It’s the promise of God!

Just because a global end-time apocalyptic event has not yet affected you, is no reason to doubt. We have the certainty of God’s Word that it will and the time of its occurrence is imminent. The gathering of Christ’s saints in the rapture is not imminent, but the apocalypse of the end-times, the Seal, Trumpet and Bowl judgments of The Revelation, most definitely are.

But note this truth: “scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, and saying, ‘Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation. For this they willfully forget: that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water, by which the world that then existed perished, being flooded with water. But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men” (2 Peter 3:3–7). This is the promise of God.

When Christ descends from heaven at the last day, “He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him”. We will all see Him, including the redeemed saints, all unbelievers, atheists and agnostics globally! “A day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness, like the morning clouds spread over the mountains” (Joel 2:2). This is the promise of God. I ask you, who, at that last day, will be your advocate? Will the unbelief of your own heart serve as your defense, or will you “have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 John 2:1)?

“And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him”. Why – because they believed not the Son of God, and were thus unprepared to see Him! They lived for themselves and their own lusts, they rejected Jesus as their Savior and Lord; “they did not repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts” (Rev. 9:21). Yes, repentance is essential to salvation! This is the promise of God.

Certainly you’re aware of the burgeoning number of Hollywood elite, corrupt politicians, Catholic priests, Protestant pastors and leaders, and many others being exposed for their sexual immorality, embezzlement of funds, murders and witchcraft. But God says to Christians, “have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them” (Eph. 5:11).

Jesus Christ said “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End”. Believe that, for you will not escape coming face to face with the Judge of all the earth. And to every believing Christian, please consider that “we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad” (2 Cor. 5:10). Only repentance, confession, and personal faith in Christ brings salvation.

In, The Judgment, every unbeliever will stand before “a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heavens fled away. And there was found no place for them. And I saw the [spiritually] dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books…Then death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire” (Rev. 20:11–15). This too is the promise of Almighty God.

Christ returns in power and glory, and “out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS” (Rev. 19:15–16).

On that glorious day when Christ gathers His saints from all the ages, and our faith becomes sight, then occurs the “restoration of all things, which God has spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began” (Acts 3:21). In that day “God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away. Then He who sat on the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new’” (Rev. 21:4–5). Let all God’s saints give thanks and shout for joy!

Marlin J. Yoder

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“discern the signs of the times”

Friday, November 17, 2017,

“Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth…And he exercises all the authority of the first beast…He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven…He was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed” (Rev. 13:11–15). This end-time revelation is much closer than you think. Are you discerning of it?

Now this 11/16/2017 headline from CBN News, “Former Google Exec Says Artificial Intelligence is ‘God,’ Creates New Religion.” The article continues, “According to paperwork filed with the IRS, this new church, called ‘Way of the Future,’ will focus on: ‘the realization, acceptance, and worship of a Godhead based on Artificial Intelligence (AI) developed through computer hardware and software’…the church will try to ‘develop and promote the realization of a Godhead based on artificial intelligence and through understanding and worship of the Godhead, contribute to the betterment of society.’” This is the spirit of antichrist at work.

The Spirit of God said through King Solomon, “That which has been is what will be, that which is done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun” (Eccl. 1:9). History repeats itself. And God said, “But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies” (2 Peter 2:1).

“Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons” (1 Tim. 4:1). In much of today’s church it’s evident that ancient Israel’s history of unbelief is repeating itself via false teachers and false prophets.

To the Pharisees and Sadducees of Jesus’ day who sought the vain glory and praise of men rather than discerning the signs of the times, Jesus said, “Hypocrites! You know how to discern the face of the sky, but you cannot discern the signs of the times” (Matt. 16:3). And to the non-discerning church of our late hour which ignores the signs of the end-times, Christ says exactly the same.

The large majority of ancient Israel’s followers of God could not discern that Jesus was their long-awaited Messiah. Because of false teachers they expected someone charismatic and wildly popular who would gloriously deliver them from Roman oppression rather than “the virgin shall conceive…Immanuel” (Isa. 7:14), who would come “lowly and riding on a donkey” (Zech. 9:9).

Due to false teachers in Jesus’ day many of God’s people had created a false messiah; a messiah who did not come according to their expectations. The fatal result of their failed expectations and non-discerning heart was their cry of deep offense: “Crucify Him, crucify Him!” (John 19:6).

Today, like then, many false teachers teach the people a false message of the returning Messiah via a pre-trib rapture. And once again a false expectation sown in the hearts and minds of many will result in hatred one of another because Messiah won’t be present to receive their wrath, but returns for His own “Immediately after the tribulation” (Matt. 24:29–31), and not before.

Because of unbelief the expectations of many Christians will be shattered, and “then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another” (Matt. 24:10). Why? – because the true Messiah will not return according to the pre-trib rapture expectations promised by false teachers. The offense that occurred at Jesus’ first advent will be repeated at His second advent.

The days of tribulation are near when the world, including Christians, will see God’s Word fulfilled, saying, “Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples, when they lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem. And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it” (Zech. 12:2–3).

So, what can you do to avoid the coming offense and sudden “falling away” (2 Thess. 2:3) when Antichrist is revealed as foretold by the Spirit through the apostle Paul? First, repent of unbelief, and believe “the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Rev. 1:9) for His return and gathering of His saints. Second, prepare by teaching yourself and your loved ones to endure to the end, “at the last day” (John 6:40) when Christ raises the righteous dead at “the first resurrection” (Rev. 20:4–6).

Third, put away from yourself any teachings that do not agree with the teachings of Christ, our true Messiah, “whom heaven must receive until the times of restoration of all things, which God has spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began” (Acts 3:21), knowing that the “restoration of all things” does not occur until the last day of this present age.

Only at the time God restores all things, will, “the Lord Himself descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord” (1 Thess. 4:16–17).

I implore you in the love of Christ, do not believe false teachers who ignore Jesus’ testimony for the gathering of saints. They have their reward of wealth and popularity teaching the false hope of the pre-trib rapture. They’ve changed the Messiah of the Bible, they teach heresy! Be wise in Christ. The pre-trib rapture is a spiritual poison. Come out from among them; be not complicit!

False expectations leading the offense in Jesus’ day at His first advent, will be repeated at His second. Satan has worked deceitfully to create multiple scenarios of Jesus’ return, including the pre-trib, mid-trib, pre-wrath, and post-millennial rapture of the saints, but there’s only one truth.

“Immediately after the tribulation…He [Christ] will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other” (Matt. 24:29–31). This is the testimony of Jesus Christ, and you will do well to heed His Word, discern the present time and prepare accordingly, because anything else will fail you.

“Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed – in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed’ (1 Cor. 15:51–52); but “he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him” (John 3:36). Do you believe Him?

Marlin J. Yoder

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“he shall confirm a covenant”

Friday, November 10, 2017

The second Jewish Temple was destroyed in AD 70 by Titus the Roman Emperor, upon which Israel ceased from being a nation. Since the rebirth of Israel as a nation, however, in May 1948, seventy 360-day Hebraic years have passed. Upon David Ben-Gurion’s declaration of Israel’s statehood, U.S. President Harry S. Truman led the world in acknowledging Israel as a nation.

The Vatican, however, was the one nation that did not recognize Israel as a nation for the next 45 years and 7 months! The Vatican finally recognized Israel as a nation, but only on its terms and conditions of the “FUNDAMENTAL AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE HOLY SEE AND THE STATE OF ISRAEL, December 30, 1993”. The Vatican, unlike other nations, put in legal terms its rights to Israel which will ultimately seat the pope in the temple where he claims to be God.

Article 10 of that “AGREEMENT”, states in part, “The Holy See and the State of Israel jointly affirm the right of the Catholic Church to property.” In carefully crafted legal terms the Vatican seized “religious, moral, educational and charitable” rights, including “land”. Orthodox Jews will soon be allowed by a seven-year “covenant” of peace to rebuild their third Temple in which they will again offer Old Testament-style animal sacrifices.

But construction of that Temple will not begin until “he [Antichrist] shall confirm a covenant with many for one week” (Dan. 9:27), meaning 7 years. That covenant is the event that begins the seven-year tribulation, the final seven years of this present age. Christians, both now and then, must ascend the holy highway of testimony for Christ Jesus. It’s nearly 24 Gregorian years since the Vatican signed its “FUNDAMENTAL AGREEMENT” with Israel. The time is near when the Vatican and its final pope will “confirm a covenant with many”.

At or near what will be the start of the final seven years of this age, John the revelator is told by the angel to, “Rise and measure the temple of God, the altar, and those who worship there. But leave out the court which is outside the temple, and do not measure it, for it has been given to the Gentiles. And they will tread the holy city underfoot for forty-two months” (Rev. 11:1–2).

“And I will give power to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy one thousand two hundred and sixty days, [3 1/2 years] clothed in sackcloth…And if anyone wants to harm them, fire proceeds from their mouth and devours their enemies. And if anyone wants to harm them, he must be killed in this manner. These have power to shut heaven, so that no rain falls in the days of their prophecy; and they have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to strike the earth with all plagues, as often as they desire” (Rev. 11:3–6). Their ministry effects the whole world.

The offering of animal sacrifices will indeed be an abomination to God who sent Christ to die for the sins of mankind, hence, the ministry of God’s two witnesses. And at the end of their 3 1/2 year ministry the two witnesses will be killed, but “after the three-and-a-half days the breath of life from God entered them, and they stood on their feet, and great fear fell on those who saw them. And they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, ‘Come up here.’ And they ascended to heaven in a cloud, and their enemies saw them” (Rev. 11:11–12).

“But in the middle of the week he [Antichrist] shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall be one who makes desolate, even until the consummation, which is determined, is poured out on the desolate” (Dan. 9:27). 3 1/2 years into the tribulation Antichrist breaks his “covenant” and demands that the whole world worship him as God.

To enforce global worship of himself, “He [Antichrist] causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name” (Rev. 13:16–17). But at the middle point of the tribulation God has a (Rev. 12:6, 14) place of safety and provision for Christians who believed Christ and prepared accordingly.

This begins the last 3 1/2 years of this present age which Christ called the “great tribulation” (Matt. 24:21). That time will be known by those having the knowledge God gave, together with spiritual discernment, when “the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God” (2 Thess. 2:3–4).

We will then know that about 42 months of this age remain, for Jesus said, “he who endures to the end shall be saved” (Matt. 24:13); and, “See, I have told you beforehand” (Matt. 24:25). So, I ask you in the love of Christ, do you believe and personalize Jesus’ end-time teachings? Many Western Christians do not believe Christ because they’ve been deceived by false teachers.

God is faithful and true, and “if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Rom. 10:9–10). Now is the time to believe Christ and get right with God, because no one has the promise of tomorrow.

The significance of the rebirth of the nation of Israel is this: Jesus said, “Now learn this parable from the fig tree [Israel]: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. So you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near – at the doors! Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away” (Matt. 24:32–35). The May 1948 rebirth of Israel marked the start of the last generation of this age.

God’s Word reveals that the Vatican is the seat of “the great harlot who sits on many waters, with whom the kings of the earth committed fornication…The woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls…And on her forehead a name was written: MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH” (Rev. 17:1–5).

We must depend on Christ for strength to endure the rising spiritual and physical tsunami of evil. The persecution of Christians is escalating globally, and the mass murder of Christians has now come to America. But Jesus foretold all this and more. We’ve begun seeing the hatred, chaos and tribulation that will envelop the earth. But only in Christ and His atonement is eternal salvation!

Marlin J. Yoder

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“Christ and Him crucified”

Friday, November 3, 2017

We live in a spiritually chilling and deceptive time when many churches take the low road of trying to make followers of Christ. They paint the gospel as a sensational splash of the world, while the cost, repentance, humility and consequence of being a true Christian is increasingly ignored. In many churches today multiple sensory stimulation’s of the flesh take center stage.

Some resort to playing secular music during pre-service time. Many produce Hollywood-style light and sound shows with fake smoke to stimulate the senses, with the clear message being to improve on the gospel message to make it more palatable, luring many to a false gospel.

Many call it “building a bridge to unbelievers” which misses the mark of the gospel. The bridge to unbelievers has already been built and there is NOTHING anyone can do to improve upon it! His name is Jesus Christ, and His name is a Rock of offense, and He promised His followers, “If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet, because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you” (John 15:19).

God further promised true Christians, “Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution. But evil men and imposters will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived” (2 Tim. 3:12–13). Suffering persecution for being a true Christian, however, is what is NOT taught by many churches today as they bow the knee to the unbelieving world.

Paul did not adopt the world’s distracting, sensory-pleasing show to make unbelievers comfortable. Paul demonstrated true leadership of the gospel, saying, “For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling. And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God” (1 Cor. 2:2–5).

Don’t miss the revelatory truth of the Apostle Paul’s purpose in preaching “that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God”! Anything that distracts from the severity and price of the cross of Christ for the redemption of fallen, unrepentant man is an affront to and scourge against Christ. The cross of Christ and cost of repentance cannot be made comfortable.

Our sins and unbelief lashed the body of Jesus Christ. Our unrepentant estate nailed Him to the old rugged cross. Our sin and pride pierced His side. Our hard hearts platted a crown of thorns upon His head. Our choice of the world’s glamorous offerings mocked Him as He suffered, that we, the wretched, undeserving, unbelieving, unrepentant and hopeless sinners might be saved.

That we could do nothing to change our destiny of an eternal hell, being eternally separated from God, is why Christ took on human flesh, suffered our punishment and shame, that by true faith in Him, and “the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Rev. 1:9), counting ourselves dead to sin (Rom. 6:11, 13) by faith in the finished work of Christ unto eternal life – this is the good news of the gospel.

A glamorized church produces a lukewarm unrepentant heart. Yet, that’s the happy, feel-good, watered-down message presented in many churches today by pastors exercising oratory skills, “with persuasive words of human wisdom”, and gain the praise of the unrepentant. This is also how saints are deceived by the false pre-trib rapture, that Christ will snatch Christians out of this world before the seven-year tribulation and revelation of Antichrist.

But note the dialogue between Pilate and Jesus. Pilate: “Are You not speaking to me? Do You not know that I have power to crucify You, and power to release You?” Jesus answered, ‘You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given you from above. Therefore the one who delivered Me to you has the greater sin’” (John 19:10–11).

When one teaches the gospel selectively, or in partiality, opposing what Christ taught, he, like Pilate, declares his power over Christ, but Christ says back to him, “You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given to you from above. Therefore the one who delivered Me to you [a false witness] has the greater sin”. Many pastors deliver a false Christ to the people!

There is no imminent, pre-trib return of Christ for the gathering of saints, and anyone who teaches so speaks violence against Christ as did Pilate. Here’s why: God said, “Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, [the rapture] we ask you…Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition” (2 Thess. 2:1–3).

The “falling away” (2 Thess. 2:3 and Matt. 24:10) from the Christian faith when the tribulation is revealed must and will occur, and Antichrist must and will be revealed before the return of Christ for the gathering of His elect. The only thing that’s imminent is the possible end of any of our lives, which could occur at any moment, because no one has the promise of tomorrow.

The sensational light, smoke and sound shows so prevalent in many churches today is just an extension of the progressive but illegal end-time changing of God’s Word, for many, “will not endure sound doctrine” (2 Tim. 4:3), which notably began with the rise of deceiving end-time spirits in the early to mid-nineteenth century when much false teaching infiltrated the church.

What about you? Does “Christ and Him crucified” (1 Cor. 2:2) look anything like the glamorous Hollywood-style productions put on by many churches today? Isn’t there conviction of personal responsibility for our unrepentant hearts that nailed Christ to that old rugged cross? Much truth of new birth conversion is tragically being removed from the church and its author is Satan who dispels by distraction and worldliness the truths of salvation. Christian, be on your guard!

Marlin J. Yoder

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“keep him in perfect peace”

Friday, October 27, 2037

Those discerning the signs of the times know the spirit of Antichrist is multiplying in humanity at an increasingly unrestrained rate, for, “you know what [God] is restraining, that he [Antichrist] may be revealed in his own time” (2 Thess. 2:6). Jesus said “as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the in the days of the Son of Man” (Luke 17:26). In the days of Noah “the earth was filled with violence” (Gen. 6:11). Increasingly, we are seeing the same today.

But in Christ “He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4). And, “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High [the condition precedent to] shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty” (Psa. 91:1). While it’s true that no one knows “the day or hour” of Christ’s return, that doesn’t negate the necessity for saints to know what we must endure getting to “the first resurrection” (Rev. 20:4–6), “at the last day” (John 6:40, 44, 54), because Christ “must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything” (Acts 3:21 NIV).

People of the U.S. are witnessing its societal destruction by elite globalists. History is being rewritten. Violence is the new norm. Lies abound. Gender neutrality is now the celebrated hatred for God. Freedoms, and especially of speech, are being destroyed on the guise of crushing “hate speech” while sin, lawlessness and perversions are protected. God foretold this and much more.

From Gatestone Institute 10/21/2017: “Germany: Full Censorship Now Official”. The article says, “Germany has made no secret of its desire to see its new law copied by the rest of the EU. When employees of social media companies are appointed as the state’s private thought police and given the power to shape the form of current political and cultural discourse by deciding who shall be allowed to speak and what to say, and who shall be shut down, free speech becomes nothing more than a fairy tale. Or is that perhaps the point?”

Gatestone, continues, “A new German law introducing state censorship on social media platforms came into effect on October 1, 2017. The new law requires social media platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, to censor their users on behalf of the German state. Social media companies are obliged to delete or block any online “criminal offenses” such as libel, slander, defamation or incitement, within 24 hours of receipt of a user complaint — regardless of whether the content is accurate or not. Social media companies receive seven days for more complicated cases. If they fail to do so, the German government can fine them up to 50 million euros for failing to comply with the law.” This is the New World Order at work.

Censorship laws are also descending on America, and Christians must be certain of who they serve. Homosexuals are allowed to sue Christian bakeries for refusing to bake cakes celebrating same-sex marriage. Christian bakeries are being sued by Satanists for refusing to bake cakes celebrating Lucifer; and public schools are being turned into centers of anti-Christ propaganda celebrating the occult, homosexuality and transgenderism.

The result? God’s end-time judgments are descending upon America and other nations. The many “natural” disasters of fires, floods, earthquakes and volcanoes, devastating thousands of homes, families and communities worldwide is anything but natural. It’s God, shaking this evil world, calling people’s attention to their unbelief, and to their evil, self-destructive ways.

Very dark and harsh days are ahead, but most pastors now also censor voluminous truths of the end-times. We live in a Christian culture where fear of losing numbers supersede the preaching of “All Scripture” (2 Tim. 3:16), especially the third about the end-time that Christ taught, warning that it’s, “he who endures to the end shall be saved” (Matt. 24:13). It’s spiritually telling of our evil day that Jesus’ end-time teachings are censored by many pastors and teachers, preferring a distracting and lighter toned venue than the difficult time of the end.

Consider: would a calculus student succeed if difficult levels of math were not taught? Would a pre-med student succeed if difficult biological truths were ignored? Would an engineering student succeed if difficult design truths were abandoned? Likewise, on what basis, then, shall Christians endure the end-times if the material relative to it is not thoroughly taught?

Consequently, you might ask, “So what can I do?” In the midst of today’s biblical censorship, miss-information and ignorance, here’s what God says: “You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You. Trust in the Lord forever, for in YAH, the Lord, is everlasting strength” (Isa. 26:3–4). But that requires you to personally study God’s end-time truths because most church leaders, pastors and teachers will not teach those critical truths.

God does not want you to experience shock, awe and offense at calamitous tribulations of the end-times, but to be fully equipped, knowledgeable and prepared for all those things that are coming; things that will challenge even the strongest of saints to stand firm in the faith, and not yield to the evil dictates of the culture in which we live. But to do that we must first believe God.

God promises to “keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You”. But in the midst of His promise to keep you in “perfect peace”, do you see the condition precedent to you keeping your mind “stayed on the Lord God”? God’s promises are conditional upon believers actually believing and participating willfully with God, for He will not force you against your will.

I call your attention to consider that God said, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16–17). Not just some, but “All Scripture…” is inspired by God. Yet, God’s end-time message is being censored by most. Why? There’s only one agent behind the censorship of “All Scripture” – Satan, because he doesn’t want God’s conditional salvation and end-time truths revealed.

Marlin J. Yoder

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“That they may know…”

Friday, October 20, 2017

In context to the end-times, two-thousand years ago the Holy Spirit said, “But the end of all things is at hand; therefore be serious and watchful in your prayers…If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God” (1 Peter 4:7, 11), meaning that one’s teaching of the times of the end must agree with God’s prophetic Word and not man’s self-conceived desires of the same.

A few years ago I watched a theologian preaching the false pre-trib rapture at a large Christian university, who, voicing unbelief of the post-trib rapture Jesus and His apostles taught, declared the typical statement, “I cannot conceive of a God who would drag His Bride through the mud of the tribulation, and then marry her!” He thus planted seeds of unbelief in the minds of thousands of students, while reinforcing his own unbelief of the Bible’s clear teachings of the end-times.

Mega-church pastor, Phil Hotsenpillar, of Influence Church in Anaheim Hills, California, in a 10/12/2017 Charisma News article, reflecting upon the horrific California wildfires destroying many hundreds of homes and businesses, and being ordered to evacuate his own home, had this to say regarding this and many other devastating calamities now befalling humanity: “Thinking about all of this, I found myself asking, ‘Where is God?’ As a nation, we are facing an increase in lawlessness and what appears to me, an unusual number of natural disasters.

He continued: “It’s a natural human response to ask questions for things we can’t understand or process. I get it: moral evil can be explained by the free will of man but much of the things we face (cancer, death, hurricanes and fires) are not a result of our free will. So where do I go from here? Either God or nature (which He created) must cause these physical evils. But these things seem incompatible with an all-loving, all-powerful God.”

The theologian’s assertion, “I cannot conceive of a God…” and the pastor’s conclusion that, “these things seem incompatible with an all-loving, all-powerful God”, is often the basis for many, who, without allowing the authority of God’s Word, form their own beliefs of who, or what, God is, does, or doesn’t do. It’s the well-traveled “wide gate” (Matt. 7:13) of unbelief.

Due to false teachings and the thought that, “I cannot conceive of a God who would…” and then fill in the blank, many are left to create their own unbiblical belief about God. Many view God as “all-loving, all-powerful” but to the exclusion of His “judgment” unto sickness and even death for not discerning the body and blood of the Lord (1 Cor. 11:27–32); and for His “chastisement” and “rebuke” for waywardness (Heb. 12:5–8); and His abiding “wrath” for unbelief (John 3:36).

We are seeing many horrific scenes of death and destruction unfolding across the world. And the killer wild fires of California, the killer floods of Houston, and the fury of killer hurricanes, make God’s activity real to Americans, many of whom simply reject that this could be God’s doing in fulfillment of the end-times wherein “a third of the trees were burned up, and all green grass was burned up” (Rev. 8:7); with “the sea and the waves roaring” (Luke 21:25). But worse is to come.

Because the God of the Bible is a God of love, judgment, chastisement, rebuke, and wrath, we have the certainty of His Word made all the more poignant saying, “That they [you and I] may know from the rising of the sun to its setting that there is none besides Me. I am the Lord, and there is no other; I form the light and create darkness, I make peace and bring calamity; I, the Lord, do all these things” (Isa. 45:6–7). The question is: “Do we actually believe God?”

The next time you hear someone declare what God does or doesn’t do, please tell them to read all of His Word before asserting their own wishful thinking, for we need truth to guide us in the way everlasting. Begin with Job 38 to 41 and confess, “I know that You can do everything, and that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You. You asked, ‘Who is this who hides counsel without knowledge?’ Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know…I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You. Therefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes” (Job 42:2–6).

Precious time is being squandered by many pastors and teachers in not teaching their people the end-time oracles of God according to “the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Rev. 1:9). This will prove disastrous for many in the time of tribulation trouble, for they will not have been prepared or equipped according to the oracles and will of God in Christ for things yet to come.

Jesus said, “Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. So you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near – at the doors! Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away” (Matt. 24:32–35). Do you discern Jesus’ teaching?

“Teach me Your way, O Lord, and lead me in a smooth path, because of my enemies. Do not deliver me to the will of my adversaries; for false witnesses have risen against me, and such as breathe out violence. I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait on the Lord; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; wait, I say, on the Lord!” (Psa. 27:11–14).

Marlin J. Yoder

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“those who fear the Lord”

Friday, October 13, 2017

Both the Old and New Testaments conclude with details of God’s “book” in which are written the names of those who belong to Him. This truth should compel every Christian to “Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? – unless indeed you are disqualified” (2 Cor. 13:5).

“Then those who feared the Lord [“often” KJV] spoke to one another, and the Lord listened and heard them; so a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the Lord and meditate on His name. ‘They shall be Mine,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘on the day that I make them My jewels. And I will spare them as a man spares his own son who serves him.’ Then you shall again discern between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve Him” (Mal. 3:16–18).

The born again heart will “often” speak of God and His Christ, “For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45). And Jesus said that, “if these should keep silent, the stones would immediately cry out” (Luke 19:40). Those who fear the Lord, meaning to love and revere Him and His Word, speak to one another “often” about the truths and applications of His Word.

From ancient times this was characteristic of those who truly feared the Lord God, who said, “these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up” (Deut. 6:6–7).

How much more, then, is this characteristic true of those who have been spiritually rejuvenated by the power of the Holy Spirit. How can one born again by faith in Christ keep silent? He can’t. Talking and sharing with one another truths of God in Christ from when we first believed to His return for the saints is God-honoring, faith-building and life-preserving.

Should our conversation, however, get hijacked by the enemy to wallow in doctrines, traditions and wishful thinking of men, God’s unchangeable truths no longer protect, preserve and guide one into His truths, but away from it. Words from our mouth reveal our heart, “For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned” (Matt. 12:37). Therefore, do our words agree with God’s Word?

Note the benefits of speaking God’s Word with one another: “a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the Lord and who meditate on His name. ‘They shall be Mine,’ says the Lord of hosts” (Mal. 3:16–17). Like myself, I know you want to be in God’s “book of remembrance”, for “’They shall be Mine,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘on the day that I make them My jewels’” (Mal. 3:17), which occurs “at the last day” (John 6:40), at “the first resurrection” (Rev. 20:4–6), “when the Lord Himself will descend from heaven” (1 Thess. 4:16).

However, to take away or diminish the Word of the Lord not only dishonors God, but destroys; the worst part of which is God’s promise, saying, “if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophesy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life, from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book” (Rev. 22:19). God could not “take away” ones “part from the Book of Life” unless ones name was not previously written therein.

Further, God warns those who would change His Word by adding to it what isn’t there, saying, “If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book” (Rev. 22:18). Yet, in much of today’s church many leaders, pastors and teachers add things to God’s Word that are simply not there, teaching assumptions and traditions.

For every church leader, pastor, deacon, elder, teacher and worker, such departure demands self-examination, because, “you are not your own. For you were bought at a price” (1 Cor. 6:19–20), which is the price of the precious redeeming blood of Jesus Christ. We, like Christ’s apostles are called to be “slaves” and “bondservants” of Christ, defending and teaching the testimony of God.

God’s Word did not originate with us, but we “are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us” (2 Cor. 5:20). Thus, God commands us to teach “them to observe [obey] all things that I have commanded you” (Matt. 28:20), that we separate from traditions and doctrines of men that add to or take away from truth, “making the word of God of no effect” (Mark 7:13).

If an official inquiry were made of your life, is there sufficient evidence to convict you of being an ambassador of God’s Word, holding it above reproach or contradiction? Is your name written in God’s “book of remembrance” (Mal. 3:16)? And are you certain that God will not take away your part “from the Book of Life”, or “the things which are written in this book” on the basis that you have not taken “away from the words of the book of this prophesy” (Rev. 22:19)?

“Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, and the Lord listened and heard them; so a book of remembrance was written before him for those who fear the Lord and meditate on His name” (Mal. 3:16). Remember, the Word of God did not originate with us, but God is “pleading through us”, that is, we who have been born again, to defend and teach all things that He taught.

Marlin J. Yoder

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“be zealous and repent”

Friday, October 6, 2017

This past Monday morning the world awoke to the Fox News headline, “MASSACRE ON THE STRIP: At least 58 killed, more than 515 hurt in Vegas attack; gunman ID’d” the worst massacre in U.S. history. Dear saints, violence, murder and death are escalating. Death and destruction is increasing throughout the earth, but of course, God forewarned us that these days would come.

The unrestrained escalation of death to humanity is end-time based, because God said, “When He [Christ] opened the second seal…Another horse, fiery red, went out. And it was granted to the one who sat on it to take peace from the earth, and that people should kill one another, and there was given to him a great sword” (Rev. 6:3–4). But is the church discerning it? Nearly not.

And is the beast-image healer emerging? Note this 9/28/2017 article at The Guardian: “Deus ex machina: former Google engineer is developing an AI god”. “Anthony Levandowski who is at the center of a legal battle between Uber and Google’s Waymo, has established a nonprofit religious corporation called Way of the Future, according to state filings first uncovered by Wired’s Backchannel. Way of the Future’s startling mission: “To develop and promote the realization of a Godhead based on artificial intelligence and through understanding and worship of the Godhead contribute to the betterment of society.”” Is the church discerning of this?

And as for high profile theologians and self-appointed TV prophets who teach that America’s best days are yet ahead, please don’t listen to them. Believe and prepare in the Words of Jesus who said, “See, I have told you beforehand” (Matt. 24:25). Most cannot discern that our generation is the last by Jesus’ parable of the fig tree, Israel, (Matt. 24:32–35) which was reborn June 14, 1948.

The spirit of Antichrist is raging as God withdraws His restraint of evil. Fellow Christian, it’s time to repent from sin and unbelief, and to believe the only wise God who can save, redeem, cleanse, purify and prepare His Bride in garments of pure white, washed in the blood of the Lamb. That begins with humility, a broken and contrite spirit, and unyielding faith.

God said, “I know your works, your labor, your patience, and that you cannot bear those who are evil. And you have tested those who say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars; and you have persevered and have patience, and have labored for My name’s sake and have not become weary. Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place – unless you repent” (Rev. 2:2–5).

Many Western Christians are spiritually lukewarm, and pampered with believing as “they” will; that they have authority to tell God what will be rather than God telling them. But such pride will not change the course of God’s end-time Word. And for those who continue assigning Christ’s Olivet Discourse to national Israel, but exclude themselves, their snare of offense has been laid.

And God said, “Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die, for I have not found your works perfect before God. Remember therefore how you have received and heard; hold fast and repent. Therefore if you will not watch, I will come upon you as a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come upon you. You have a few…who have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with Me in white, for they are worthy. He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments, and I will not blot out his name from the Book of Life; but I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels” (Rev. 3:2–5).

Many Christians assume identity in Israel Houghton’s lyrics saying, “I am a friend of God” without discerning the cost and conditional requirements of actually being a friend of God.

Houghton sings, “Who am I that you are mindful of me – That you hear me when I call, Is it true that you are thinking of me – How you love me, it’s amazing (Who am I Lord)

I am a friend of God – I am a friend of God

I am a friend of God – I am a friend of God

God Almighty – Lord of Glory – You have called me friend”

But as is very prevalent today, Houghton deceptively doesn’t tell us that friendship with God is conditional. Jesus said “You are My friends if you do whatever I command you” (John 15:14). I trust you understand the difference between Houghton’s self-assured assumptions of being a friend of God, from God’s criteria of the same. Spiritually, what’s NOT said is critical.

“I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’ – and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked – I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent” (Rev. 3:15–19).

God also said at Pentecost, “Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out” (Acts 3:19). From the start of the gospel being preached to The Revelation of Jesus Christ, repentance is central. But that’s highly unpopular in the culture-accommodating church today because true repentance kills the very nature and self-will of the fallen human spirit.

“Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Cor. 6:2). If we will be saved and endure the end-time apocalyptic storms of violence, natural disasters, deceptions and more, we must believe Christ and act upon His Word. That begins by the confession and repentance of sins and unbelief. If we submit to Christ, He will lead us in that process.

In the NKJV of the New Testament the Words “repentance” and “repent” occur 50 times, and “humility” and “humble” occur 13 times, both of which are inescapable requirements of being born again unto eternal life. Salvation is not based on one’s wishful declarations, but on God’s command to believe Christ, confess sins, repent and obey the gospel of God.

Today, many are in love with the idea that God loves them, while true repentance and humility eludes them. Many in the church say they love Jesus but produce fruit contrary to His teachings. Is this the result of true repentance and humility not being taught to the people as each are left to believe what “they” will? Have proud assumptions largely replaced the Word of God? I think so.

God assures that “The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, and saves such as have a contrite spirit” (Psa. 34:18); and that, “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, a broken and a contrite heart – these, O God, You will not despise” (Psa. 51:17); and “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6). These are essential truths of salvation unto eternal life.

Exchange Israel Houghton’s proud assuming lyrics for those of Elisha Hoffman (1839–1929) who wrote the soul-searching and challenging lyrics to, “Are You Washed In The Blood?”

“Have you been to Jesus for the cleansing power? Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?

Are you fully trusting in His grace this hour? Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?

Lay aside the garments that are stained with sin, And be washed in the blood of the Lamb;

There’s a fountain flowing for the soul unclean, O be washed in the blood of the Lamb”.

Marlin J. Yoder

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