the incredible growth of Christianity IN AFRICA AND ASIA
DEVELOPMENTS IN ISRAEL & THE MIDDLE EAST
OLMERT OFFERS SYRIA THE GOLAN IN EXCHANGE
FOR FULL PEACE
LIEBERMAN’S PLAN: “DECLARE GAZA HOSTILE
INDIA: GUJJAR PEOPLE DEMAND RIGHTS
TIME FOR A REVIVAL OF BIBLICAL TRUTH AND PRACTICE
BELIEVING HOME - A CENTRE
THE NEW COVENANT
HAVE CHRISTIANS HIJACKED A COVENANT INTENDED FOR ISRAEL?
OUR FINAL STUDY IN
GREAT DISTRESS, AND THE END OF THE AGE
SLAVERY AND OPPRESSION
Warm greetings once more in the Name
which is above all names - the Name of Y’shua the Messiah.
You have heard
about the growth of Islam; you’ve heard of the explosion of wickedness, and
the increase of drug addiction, violence, and apostasy. And at times you
might have been tempted to think that Satan is winning. Well, that’s not the
whole story! Here’s a recent account of the ...
the incredible growth of
IN AFRICA AND ASIA
Today more Presbyterians worship in
the African nation of Ghana than in Scotland. And more Anglicans worship in
Nigeria than in Britain.
While the “Christian West” likes to
think of itself as the centre of Christianity, there is growing evidence
that the center of Christendom has moved.
Africans are running to accept Jesus
Christ. And there are great things happening all across the developing
world. It may sound like an exaggeration, but it’s not! Christianity is
sweeping across the southern hemisphere and Asia like a tidal wave.
“The scale of Christian growth is
almost unimaginable,” says Dr. Philip Jenkins, professor of History and
Religious Studies at Penn State University. In his book, The Coming of
Global Christianity, Jenkins says within 20 years, two-thirds of all
Christians will live in Africa, Latin America or Asia.”
In the year 1900, there were about 10
million Christians in Africa - about 10% of the population. Today there are
360 million - almost 50% of the population.
“The Bible is alive in Africa, and
Asia, and Latin America,” Jenkins says. “And overwhelmingly, it’s the kind
of Christianity that is very Bible-centered, that takes the Bible and
authority very seriously.”
In China, there are between 80 and 100
million Christians. And a former Time Magazine correspondent, David
Aikman, predicts China will be a Christianized nation within 20 or 30 years.
He does not predict a Christian majority, but a China that is 25 to 30%
Christian; enough, he says, to change society and government. And, says
Aikman, the Chinese church leaders have a burden to take the gospel to the
rest of the globe, including to the Muslim nations.
“It’s part of a burden that they call
‘back to Jerusalem,’” Aikman said. “They believe that just as the gospel
originally came out of Jerusalem and went to the West and to N. America and
Europe and came to China, now the Chinese need to bring it back to
Jerusalem, not in the sense of evangelizing the Jewish, but in the sense of
completing the circle so that the gospel message is available to everybody
in the world.”
Imagine Chinese reaching the Muslims,
Koreans evangelizing Indians, Africans taking the gospel back to a largely
Matthew Ashimolowo, is an African
pastor of the fastest growing church in England. “God is sending people who
used to receive missionaries to now be missionaries around the world,” he
Kenyan Bishop Gilbert Dya has one of
the largest churches in London. “I am in this country, believing that God
sent me here in Great Britain to make a voice on His behalf to let them know
that they need to repent and come back to God,” he said.
- source: www.cbn.com/CBNNews/News/030819a.asp
That’s good news. But as the growth of
Christianity increases, and other religions feel threatened by the Gospel,
persecution erupts. And so today we see increasing attacks on Christians in
Y’shua, said: “Blessed are
those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom
of heaven. Blessed are you when men revile, insult and slander you,
and when they persecute you, telling all kinds of vicious lies about you
because of Me. Rejoice, and be glad for your reward in heaven is great, for
in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”
Let us rejoice with the many thousands
of souls coming to the Saviour every day. And let us rejoice with those who
are persecuted, and uphold them in our prayers. And, dear believer, keep
looking up as you see signs of the times coming thick and fast.
“For yet in a very little
while, He who is coming, will come, and will not delay!” (Hebrews 10:37)
May the peace of God fill your
hearts and minds.
Your brother in the Messiah,
& THE MIDDLE EAST
AHMADINEJAD: “IT’S TOO LATE TO
STOP NUCLEAR PROGRAM”
President Ahmadinejad said it was “too
late” to stop Iran’s nuclear program and urged the West and America to
abandon their “arrogant policies” of setting conditions. “Despite pressure,
Iran has only become stronger,” Mr. Ahmadinejad said at a news conference.
The Iranian president also appeared to
dismiss ambitions of using the controversial nuclear program for weapons
making. “What is atomic bomb good for? Thoughts can’t be changed by nuclear
bomb. Today is the day of thought and logic,” he said.
AP / June 5, 2007
“ISRAEL’S DESTRUCTION IS IN NEAR FUTURE”
The Iranian President also said early
this month that the world will witness the destruction of Israel in the near
future. Mr. Ahmadinejad made his remarks in a speech marking the 18th
anniversary of the death of revolutionary founder Ayatollah Ruhollah
Iranian media quoted the president as
telling foreign guests that last year’s war between Israel and Hezbollah
guerrillas in Lebanon had started the countdown to Israel’s destruction.
ISRAELI ARMY PREPARING FOR
WAR ON TWO FRONTS
“The IDF is preparing for an
escalation on both the Palestinian and northern fronts,” Chief of General
Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi said in early June. “The IDF’s goal is to
improve our readiness, while at the same time continuing the war on terror,”
Military Intelligence Chief Maj.-Gen.
Amos Yadlin referred to the northern border in his briefing to the Knesset
Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee.
“Syria is making very real
preparations, cleaning army posts, conducting large drills and strengthening
defenses. They are reaching a state of readiness for war more than in the
past, but this doesn’t mean they’ll be ready for war tomorrow. The Syrians
have a very large quantity of long-range missiles. They do not need to move
forces around to attack with these missiles.
- Jerusalem Post
/Jun. 5, 2007
OLMERT OFFERS SYRIA THE GOLAN
IN EXCHANGE FOR FULL PEACE
JUNE 8. Israeli PM Ehud Olmert has
offered a deal to Syrian leader Bashar Assad, whereby Syria would receive
control of the Golan Heights in exchange for revoking the Syrian-Iranian
alliance and cutting all ties with terrorist organizations.
Olmert reportedly informed Syria, via
a third party, that he is aware that a peace agreement with Syria “means
returning the Golan to Syrian sovereignty.” He said he is willing to do so,
but wishes to know if Syria, in return, will “dismantle, in stages, its
alliance with Iran, Hizbullah and Palestinian terrorist organizations.”
Meir Dagan, the director of the
Israeli espionage agency, the Mossad, told a closed government meeting last
month that Syria was broadcasting its willingness to talk with Israel
strictly as a tactical maneuver.
This conclusion, he said, is based on
intelligence information and internal Mossad analysis. But Dagan said that
even if Israel were to open a channel of negotiations with Syria, the Assad
regime would not cut its support for, or ties with, the Hizbullah terrorists
in Lebanon, although it might do so in the cases of Hamas and the Islamic
Jihad. Assad has not yet responded to Israel’s latest offer.
- Yediot Acharonot /Arutz / 8 June 07
NATION UP IN ARMS AT OLMERT’S GOLAN OFFER
JUNE 8. PM Ehud Olmert’s latest offer
to give the Golan Heights to Syria flies in the face of polls showing
overwhelming public opposition to ceding the Golan. The offer also has many
MKs (Members of the Knesset - Parliament) on both sides of the political
spectrum up in arms.
A recent poll shows that a full 84% of
the public opposes a full withdrawal from the Golan.
Likud MK Calls on Shas and Yisrael Beiteinu
to Quit Government
MKs from the Likud and National
Union/National Religious Party came out vehemently against Olmert. Likud
faction head Gideon Saar called upon Shas and Yisrael Beiteinu
- two coalition parties whose voters are nearly all right-wing - to
immediately quit the government. “Olmert has no public legitimacy for a
withdrawal from the Golan,” Saar said. “Far from our eyes, processes are
taking place that will be hard to stop in the future. The responsibility for
this lies upon all the members of the government and coalition.”
The Left DEMANDS THAT Olmert GiveS GOLAN Away Now!
Left-wing MKs, on the other hand,
attacked Olmert for only offering the Golan and not actually taking steps to
actualize the offer. Meretz Party leader Yossi Beilin said the agreement to
give back the Golan has been ready to sign “ever since 2000 when [then-PM]
Ehud Barak became scared of himself and ended the meeting with the Syrians
in Shepherdstown, West Virginia.”
ASSAD ADVOCATES DIPLOMATIC TALKS,
BUT PREPARES FOR WAR
The UN Security Council’s decision to
establish an international court to try Basher Assad and his relatives for
the murder of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri has made the
Syrian government frantic. This development may come at Israel’s expense, as
within the battle for his survival, Assad may embark on a war against Israel
sooner than expected. -
Israel Opinion / 3 June 07
ABBAS: ‘PALESTINIANS ON VERGE OF CIVIL WAR’
Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud
Abbas warned Tuesday that his people were on the verge of civil war, and
said the infighting was worse than living under Israeli military rule.
Post / 5 June 07
HAMAS GETTING LONGER RANGE MISSILES
Military Intelligence Chief Maj.-Gen.
Amos Yadlin reported to the Knesset Defence Committee that in Gaza, Hamas
possessed Grad missiles with a range of 20 kilometers that have yet to be
fired at Israel.
Yadlin also warned that shoulder-fired
missiles, with a range of 40 kilometers, could soon be smuggled into the
- Jerusalem Post
/Jun. 5, 2007
“DECLARE GAZA HOSTILE POLITICAL ENTITY”
Declaring Gaza a hostile entity and an
enemy state is part of the new political plan presented by the Israeli
Deputy PM and Minister for Strategic Affairs Avigdor Lieberman on May 31.
(Lieberman is the chairman of the Yisrael Beitenu party - “Israel our
The main points of the plan include
complete severance of ties with the Gaza Strip, isolating the Strip from the
West Bank [Judea and Samaria], bombing Gaza in retaliation for Kassam
attacks, canceling Palestinian prisoners’ visitation rights until kidnapped
soldier Gilad Shalit is released, and ending all contact with Palestinian
Authority [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas.
Lieberman explained that current
Israeli perception offers only two options on how to deal with the
Palestinians: Acknowledgment and acceptance of the existing situation, which
consequently rewards terror; or dialogue with the Hamas government in an
attempt to find a way out of the situation. He claimed that both
alternatives are equally wrong: “They both validate the axis of evil, and
they both shed doubt on the future of the State of Israel.”
The new political plan, which was
presented to government officials in the United States and Europe this week,
has not yet been introduced to the Israeli government. Nonetheless,
Lieberman plans to follow through on his plan, which constitutes Yisrael
Beiteinu’s vision as part of the current government. According to Lieberman,
this plan presents a pragmatic approach, which will bring Israel a practical
solution to the state of chaos with the Palestinian Authority.
In his plan, the deputy prime minister
refers to the West Bank and Gaza as two separate entities, both on the
political level and on the practical level. Israel will address both
entities separately. Any negotiation with the PA will only apply to the West
Bank. “Gaza will be defined as a hostile, independent political entity for
all intents and purposes,” Lieberman explained.
Lieberman suggested practical steps to
implement his plan: There will be no movement between Gaza and the West
Bank, not of goods, and not of people. This restriction of movement includes
the Palestinian president’s aides and Palestinian VIPs. Workers will not be
permitted to leave Gaza to work in Israel.
Taxes for the Gaza Strip will not be
collected. The Ashdod port will not transfer any goods to the Strip. All
crossings, including Karni crossing [between Gaza and Israel] will be
sealed. Israel will not provide Gaza authorities with any type of
infrastructure or resource. The Gazans will have to find their own solutions
to problems of fuel, water, and electricity.
Lieberman said that the process of
complete severance of ties will begin in 2008, when all contact between
Israel and Gaza will be cut off. “Gaza’s fate will be like that of Sinai,”
Lieberman’s plan said. “Just as Israel did not continue to provide anything
to Sinai after it withdrew, there is no reason why it should act any
differently toward Gaza, especially in the current situation.”
Leading up to the complete separation
from Gaza and from that point onward, Israel will treat any security threat
coming from the Strip very severely. Israel will work toward thwarting the
threat by any means available, just as any sovereign country is meant to do
in order to protect its citizens from an enemy attack. “It’s very simple,”
said Lieberman, “Sderot’s fate will be similar to that of the Gazan
neighborhood of Rimal. If Sderot is hit, the Rimal neighborhood will be hit
just as hard at the very least.”
“The security situation will change
only when NATO forces and the European Union take full responsibility for
what goes on in the Gaza Strip. NATO will act to enforce public order and
preserve security in the region.
The EU will take responsibility for
the construction and opening of alternative infrastructure and provide
employment for the residents of Gaza. Financial activity will include not
only money transfers, donations, and investments, but the management and
close supervision of projects being started, and infrastructure being built.
Otherwise, the money will evaporate or be used to fund terror.”
Lieberman added that “as long as (Gilad)
Shalit is held captive with no one able to visit him, not even the Red
Cross, visitation rights of all Palestinians security prisoners held in
Israel should be cancelled.”
Israel should also admit to the
failure in its attempt to strengthen Abbas, said Lieberman, adding that the
Jewish state should “admit that every attempt to strengthen him, or place
him as a partner who is capable of getting the job done, has failed. Israel
should wait for an authentic replacement with leadership potential and a
- Ynetnews.com, May
MORE THAN 20 KILLED IN
CLASHES WITH GOVERNMENT
Tribal farmers in India known as the
Gujjars want affirmative action rights. They want rights so badly that
they’re clashing with the government and other tribes to get this status.
More than 20 people have died in the violence.
A Christian worker in the area
expressed deep concern. “Basically the government’s trying to keep a lid on
it. However, it is very, very serious, and it’s actually starting to spill
over into other states. This is a very, very serious situation. It could
really blow up.”
This unrest, coupled with the large
number of Dalits turning to Christ, angers Hindu nationalists, said the
Christian worker. “That’s the whole part of why the church is being
persecuted. They’re turning to Christ by the tens of thousands. It basically
takes [Dalits] out of the Hindu faith, and therefore the caste system starts
to deteriorate, which actually is a fundamental part of the Hindu belief
Gujars (also Gujjar, Gurjar, or
Gurjara), are members of one of the many groups, or castes, of the
subcontinent, mainly inhabiting Punjab (Pakistan), Jammu & Kashmir, Punjab
(India) and Gujarat, with some groups in Rajasthan and Haryana. Gurjars
belong to the Kshatriya castes.
IT’S TIME FOR A
what you have learned and have become convinced of, knowing from whom you
have learned; and how from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures
which are able to make you wise in respect to salvation through faith
in the Messiah, Y’shua.
Scripture is divinely-inspired - God-breathed, and is profitable for
teaching, for conviction and reproof, for correction, for training in
righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate and complete,
thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
(2 Timothy 3:14-17)
By Don Stanton
We are in the endtimes, and as the
apostle Paul foretold, and warned, people in the endtimes will have a form
of religion, but they will deny the power of true Godliness.
(2 Timothy 3:5)
The Messiah, Y’shua, has also
described the endtime church as one endowed with material wealth, but
stricken with spiritual poverty.
“You say, ‘I am rich, and
have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,’ and you do not know that you
are wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked.”
Today much of the Western “church” is
tremendously wealthy, but its teachings and practices are becoming more
In the 20th century truth was replaced
by modernism. In the 21st century, apostasy has produced a post-modernism
which is fast leading to a post-Christian era.
While the Gospel is mightily impacting
certain countries and communities around the world, a “new gospel” is
permeating much of “the church,” particularly in the Western world.
The “new gospel” is a deception, and
is not based on sound Biblical doctrine; it is driven by humanistic
reasoning. It is a package of new age philosophies, false teachings,
spiritualism, mysticism, rationalism, entertainment and psychological
The “new gospel” does not call for
repentance and implicit faith in Christ and the Word of God. Rather, it
imitates and compromises with the world.
The “church” has become more and more
professionalized and commercialized. Today is an age of mega-churches where
modern day “apostles,” like the popes of old, gained more power, influence,
and built “spiritual empires” around themselves.
In the Dark Ages, the Church of Rome
sold “indulgences” – forgiveness of sins. Salvation was paid for in hard
cash. Today, professional preachers proclaim prosperity as a reward for all
who share their salaries with the “sons of the seers” - self-seekers who
claim they are “building the kingdom.”
Living in luxury, and riding in
private air-jets, they proclaim they are “taking the world for Christ.”
Y’shua only twice or thrice, rode even on a donkey.
But times have changed! Today the new
gospel says, “Seek ye first the kingdom of materialism, and all these
prosperities will be added unto you.”
Today is it not, “Give us our daily
bread.” It is, “Give us our bread with butter and Manuka honey.”
In today’s “gospel” everything can be
spiritualised. The Scriptures are modernized to make the “message”
favourable to sceptics and money-minded marketeers. The Word is
allegoricalised (treated symbolically) so that it no longer means what it
Bible prophecy is placed in the realm
of necromancy; the Rapture is called “scare-mongering”; Israel’s prophesied
role in the endtimes is decried as ludicrous; hell is mediaeval; and heaven
is wishful thinking. “So enjoy your heaven here and now!”
In the US, a recent Newsweek/Beliefnet
poll found 68% of evangelical Christians doubt that Jesus is the only Way.
And in Scotland, two-thirds of Scottish clergy do not believe in hell.
Most people, it seems, would rather
believe the tycoon who came back from a near-death experience proclaiming,
“I did not see heaven, and there is no hell out there,” rather than believe
the Word of God.
Although it is still the world’s most
published Book, the Bible seems to be returning to a Dark Age where it is
kept on an altar, or the book shelf. Looks nice, but it’s not to be read and
Many modern preachers hold a
microphone, but not a Bible, in their hands. And Bible studies are being
replaced by “sharing” sessions where you talk about your problems and
experiences and get comfort from hearing about others’ experiences.
The “family altar” is now the TV
altar. The Lord’s Day is now The Sports’ Day; and the “united, spiritual
Christian family” is now an antique institution belonging to the 17th
Today we need a
Revival of Biblical Truth and Practice!
And now let me share with you about
one area where we may be able to start the revival . . .
THE BELIEVING HOME –
CENTRE FOR SPIRITUAL
By Don Stanton
explore the Biblical roots of the Faith, we will discover principles and
practices that have long been neglected.
In the Old Testament we see it was
God’s intention for every family in Israel
to be a centre for spiritual
growth. Every father was to be
the spiritual authority
home, and he was to train up his
family in the ways of YHWH. He was
to take care
of the family’s spiritual well-being as well as
its basic education and sustenance.
The present Christian
practice is send children
to secular schools for “secular”
education, and to
Sunday School for
“religious” instruction. And the majority of
renege on their spiritual
responsibility as head of the
home. As a
result, they, and
their families forfeit much spiritual
“Time” of course is a main culprit.
Although we have
time for most other things, we don’t have much
time for the
family. Fathers! Do you neglect the
spiritual mandate from the
LORD for the personal training of your
Handing over a child
to someone else for
not the answer. Our children
need to hear God’s instructions from
their PARENTS’ mouths. (And of course,
parents should be Godly role models). While they are young,
children will listen
parents. The very fact that “Dad said it,” is enough for most children.
Today, homes everywhere are breaking
up, and even many Christian children are in rebellion. The pressures and
influences from outside are very powerful, and unless our children are
established in the Faith at an early age, they are soon going to be play
toys in the hands of Satan.
If you think that Sunday School and
“the Pastor” are going to fulfil your family’s spiritual requirements, you
may be very disappointed. Already it may be too late! Father, it is YOUR
responsibility. The Scriptures say:
“Train a child in the way
he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.”
Hear the words of The Shema -
one of the most well-known passages of the Old Testament:
“Hear O Israel. YHWH our
God, YHWH is one ... these words, which I am commanding you today, shall be
in your heart; you shall impress them upon your children. Speak about them
when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie
down and when you get up.”
These words make it abundantly clear
that the home must be the centre of spiritual learning.
Look also at Solomon’s instructions
in Proverbs 4:1-5:
“Sons! Listen to the
instruction of a father, and give attention to gain understanding;
for I have given you sound teaching. Do not abandon my instruction. When I
was a son in my father’s house, still tender and the only one
in the sight of my mother, he taught me and said to me, ‘Lay hold of
my words with all your heart. Keep my commandments and live! Get wisdom! Get
understanding! Do not forget, nor turn away from the words of my mouth’!”
For a child, the real world is the
home. The “church” or Sunday School to many is like a theatre, a place you
go to once a week, and listen to instructions from comparative strangers.
Preachers often shout or speak above the heads of children, and in a
language that is “separated” from real life.
(This observation is speaking in
general. It is not criticizing churches that are true spiritual
where children are taught the Scriptures clearly.)
And there are many homes where
children receive no spiritual instruction at all; so the Sunday School,
Assembly, or Children’s Bible Club may be the only place where they can
receive spiritual teaching.
The Church is very important indeed -
it is an expression of the Body of the Messiah. But it will be more healthy
and mature, when it is
composed of healthy, mature, and
spiritually-instructed families. Preachers have to minister to all types -
people who are at various spiritual levels, and at different ages. So they
are limited as to what they are able to teach, and for how long they can
teach. These days, most church members can’t endure more than a 20-minute
“message”; or 30
minutes if the sermon has more jokes in it.
(In one church, I was asked to preach
not longer than 7 minutes. But that church was in the process of gradually
conditioning the people to receive messages. Until shortly before that
time, they had no
messages at all. It was simply ritual.)
Many people “turn off” after 5 or 10
minutes because they
have never learned to concentrate on spiritual
exposition. And that’s more reason why we need to teach young ones how to
concentrate at home.
TRAINING IN THE HOME
In the home, the father must teach the
family HOW to read the Scriptures, and then he should impress Scriptural
principles upon the young ones. He needs to train them in such a way that
they are completely convinced, and learn to absolutely concur with the
Scriptures. They must be taught to love the Word, and they must know
they believe the Scriptures.
Parents need to set examples for their
children, and display the Scriptural roles of husband and wife.
The mother has an important role in
teaching also, as she usually spends more time with the children.
son, your father’s instruction, and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.”
But it will be a wise woman who deeply
respects her husband, and who teaches her children to honour their father as
the head of the home.
And it will be a wise man that honors
and upholds his wife, in front of the children, as an excellent wife.
In a home where the father is not
saved, or where he is not very spiritual, the wife, without nagging him,
should let him know that God’s intention for the father is to be the
spiritual head of the home. Many men have never had that thought cross their
minds. The wife should gently encourage her husband to read the Scriptures
to the family, and to learn to pray with them.
Here church leaders can play an
important role, by teaching the principles about spiritual authority in the
home, and how to teach the Word to build up the family in the faith. They
should be keen to guide the family in their desire to become a centre for
A WEEKLY FAMILY EVENING
We can learn an important lesson by
looking at the age-long Jewish practice of the Shabbat Erev meal –
that is, the Sabbath Eve meal. (In the Scriptures, the Sabbath begins at
sunset at the end of the 6th day.)
The eve of Shabbat was different from
the other evenings of the week; it was the beginning of their day of rest.
(It was a bit like in the Western world where most workers look forward to
Friday night – and the beginning of their weekend off.)
Spiritually-minded Jews loved Shabbat,
and their custom was for the family to gather for a
on Friday evening where
they would have their own special, family evening - a time of worship,
singing, reading the Torah, memorizing scriptures, praying, and reaffirming
their faith and Biblical values.
The meal, which was the best of the
week, was prepared before the Sabbath began. On the table there would be two
loaves of bread representing God’s blessing, both spiritual and temporal.
There were also two glasses of the fruit of the vine which represented the
joy of the LORD, and the joy of life that He gives.
During the evening the Father would
express his love and deep appreciation of his wife, and honour her as the
excellent wife of Proverbs 31. And then he would bless his sons, and his
daughters, one by one, reciting the blessing of Numbers 6:24-27.
Praying for their blessing, and
placing the Name of Yahweh upon the children, gave them an assurance that
they belonged to the faith of the family, and that their parents were always
concerned for them.
The whole evening was leisurely – it
was prime time for the family and the LORD! And this regular practice
helped greatly in uniting the
LET US SEEK TO MAKE OUR HOME
A SPIRITUAL CENTRE
believing family should seek to be a centre of spiritual growth. The father
is to be spiritual head of the
household, and the children are to be brought up in the instruction of the
We do not have to imitate the Jewish
custom, but a regular fellowship time can bring much blessing to Christian
families, and greatly help them to be united, and to grow up in the ways of
the Heavenly Father.
None of this is to be bondage, except
in the sense that we are the slaves of righteousness. (Romans 6:16). This
may seem quite “heavy” to Christians who want to walk casually and lightly
with their God. But should it not be our burning desire to do God’s will?
to do Your will, O My God; Your Torah (instruction) is within My
obey your parents ... FATHERS, do not provoke your children to anger; but
bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Master.”
THE NEW COVENANT
HAVE CHRISTIANS HIJACKED A COVENANT
INTENDED FOR ISRAEL?
Jeremiah’s prophecy in chapter 31 is
about God’s future New Covenant for Israel - not the church. The New
Covenant for the church that has been inaugurated by the Messiah, and that
is up and running for all believers – Jews and Gentiles - of the church age,
is taught in the other scriptures, as we will see later in this article.
Let’s first look at the New Covenant
promise for Israel:
“‘See, the days are coming,’ declares YHWH, ‘when I will make a new
covenant with the House of Israel and with the House of Judah,
not like the covenant I made with their fathers in the day when I
took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt - My covenant
which they broke - although I was a husband to them,’ declares YHWH.
“ ‘But this is the covenant I will make with the House of Israel after those
days,’ declares YHWH: ‘I will put My Law (Torah-teaching) within
them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they
will be My people.
“And no longer will they teach, each one his neighbour and each one his
brother, saying, “Know YHWH,” for they will all know Me, from the least of
them to the greatest of them,’ declares YHWH, ‘for I will forgive their
iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more’.”
From this passage and several other
prophecies, we can identify the main features of the New Covenant for Israel
which are to be fulfilled in the Millennium.
1 It is an unconditional covenant
involving God and both Houses of Israel. (v 31)
2 It is clearly distinct from, and
different to, the Mosaic Covenant. (v 32)
3 It promises national regeneration
for Israel. (v 33a).
4 It involves the indwelling of the
Holy Spirit (v. 33b), and Ezekiel 36:27 - “I will put My Spirit within
5 It is linked to the universal
regeneration of Israel. It is for all believing Jews. (v 34a). No Jew will
say to another, “Know the Lord,” for they shall all know Him.
6 It brings forgiveness and takes
sin away. (v 34b) The covenant is mediated by the Messiah. (Hebrews 8:6-8,
13; & 9:15). And Israel’s salvation is based on the atonement through
Messiah’s sacrifice at Calvary. Old Testament believers are also covered by
the death of Messiah.)
7 The precepts of God are engraved
on their hearts of all the Israelites. (v 33)
8 It includes elements from the
Abrahamic and Davidic covenants - regarding the promised land, and the
perpetual throne of David. (Genesis 12:1-3. Psalm 69:3-4)
9 It will shower Israel with
millennial blessings. (Ezekiel 34:25-27).
10 It includes a Sanctuary of God
(the Millennium Temple) according to Ezekiel 37:26-28.
11 It will fulfil the Millennial
prophecies concerning the Messiah and the Kingdom. (Luke 24:25-27)
12 The Mosaic Covenant contained the
Law of Moses, but the New Covenant contains the Law of the Messiah (Romans
8:2 and Galatians 6:2), as Messiah will be the King over the Millennial
HAS THE NEW COVENANT BEEN HIJACKED
BY THE CHURCH ?
A-millennialists (people who don’t
believe in the future literal 1,000-year kingdom), and “replacement
theologians,” teach that the church has replaced Israel, and therefore the
promises made to Israel are fulfilled in and by the church. Yes, Replacement
Theology is an attempt to hijack the New Covenant by spiritualising the
prophecies and making them fit into a non-literal scheme of fulfillment. In
fact, A-millennialists regard many of the endtime Bible prophecies as
Pre-millennialists like myself,
totally reject “replacement theology” and A-millennialism.
God’s prophecies for Israel will be
fulfilled with literal Israel, including the New Covenant promised in
Israel’s regeneration begins early in
the Great Tribulation when God pours out the Holy Spirit on all flesh.
And throughout the seven years, increasing numbers of Jews will receive
Y’shua the Messiah as their Redeemer, until finally, all believing
Israel will be saved.
The majority, I believe, will be saved
in the first half of the Tribulation. These believers will experience the
promises and the provisions of the Eternal Covenant.
In the second half of the Tribulation
many believers - Jews and Gentiles - will be slain because of their faith in
Y’shua. These martyrs, however, will be raised to reign with Messiah in the
With the establishment of the Kingdom,
the Covenant with the two houses of Israel comes into effect.
Now the question is …
WHAT IS THE NEW COVENANT THAT IS
ALREADY UP AND RUNNING FOR THE CHURCH?
And how does it differ to the future
New Covenant for millennial Israel?
1. The Lord Jesus, the apostle Paul,
and the Book of Hebrews all speak of a New Covenant which has been
inaugurated by Christ, and that it is already operating for all born again
Y’shua, at the Passover meal on the
night before He was crucified, indicated that His shed blood would ratify a
“After they had eaten,
He took the cup, saying, ‘This cup
represents the New Covenant ratified by My blood which is to
be poured out for you’.”
And as this statement is repeated in
Paul’s message to the largely Gentile Corinthian church, we believe this is
a covenant for the Universal Body of Christ.
“In the same way, after
supper, He also took the cup, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, as often
as you drink it, in remembrance of Me’.”
(1 Corinthians 11:25)
The apostle Paul made it clear that
the New Covenant was up and running, and that he himself was a minister of
“Not that we are adequate
in ourselves to claim anything as having come from ourselves, but our
adequacy is from God, who also made us competent to
serve as ministers of a New Covenant, not
of the letter of a written Law, but of the Spirit; for the letter
of the Law kills, but the Holy Spirit gives life.”
2. The writer to Hebrews compares the
Jeremiah 31 prophecy with the covenant mediated and inaugurated by the
“But now He, Y’shua,
has received a ministry which is much more superior and
excellent, just as the covenant of which He is Mediator is superior to
the old one, and which has been founded on better promises. For if that
first covenant had been faultless, no occasion would have been sought for
“But finding fault with
them, He, YHWH, said, ‘BEHOLD, THE DAYS ARE COMING, DECLARES YHWH,
WHEN I WILL MAKE A NEW COVENANT WITH THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL, AND WITH THE HOUSE
“When He speaks of “a new
covenant,” He has made the first covenant obsolete; and whatever
is becoming obsolete and ageing is ready to disappear - to be dispensed
“For this reason - His
sacrifice - He is the Mediator of a new
covenant. Because a death has taken place which redeems people from
the transgressions committed under the first covenant, those who are
called may receive the promised eternal inheritance.”
3. The Book of Hebrews was written
primarily for believers of Jewish background; and the writer makes it clear
that the new covenant inaugurated by Messiah was not future. It was already
a reality, and all true believers have a part of it.
“But you have come to Mount
Zion, to the heavenly Jerusalem, the city of the living God; to myriads of
angels, to the Universal Assembly, to the Ekklesia - the corporate
body of ‘The Firstborn’ who are enrolled in heaven. You have come
to God, the Judge of all, to the spirits of righteous men made perfect; and
you have come to Y’shua the Mediator of a
New Covenant and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks of mercy
- a more gracious message than the blood of Abel which cried out
This leads us to conclude that the New
Covenant is indeed present for the Church - for all believers saved by the
atoning work of the Messiah at Calvary. This Covenant has been inaugurated
by Messiah and is universal. It is also called the “Everlasting Covenant”
(Hebrews 12:20), as it completes the plan of God for those saved by the
Lamb, from “every tribe, tongue, people and nation.”
The New Covenant that YHWH will enact
with Israel will also be an everlasting covenant
as it completes God’s plan for the nation of Israel. The future national
spiritual regeneration of “all Israel” will prepare the Redeemed of the LORD
for their central role in the covenant for the Millennial kingdom.
That New Covenant will provide the
eternal spiritual realities for believers on earth during the Millennium,
and it will also make provision for a Sanctuary where the Sh’khinah Glory
(the manifest Presence of God) will reside once more.
Mt Zion, the Centre of
Millennial worship, will become “the Joy of the whole Earth.”
And the City of God will be called
Yahweh Shammah “Yahweh is there.” (Ez. 48:35)
OUR FINAL STUDY IN THE BOOK OF DANIEL
BY BROTHER BOB HINES, NEW ZEALAND
GREAT DISTRESS, AND THE END OF THE AGE
PLEASE READ DANIEL CHAPTER 12
In chapter 11 part 2 we learnt of the
rise of an evil king that other passages in the Bible refer to as The
Antichrist and The Beast. We also studied some of the battles that will
occur when this king is in a position of power.
Now chapter 12 starts by stating, “At
that time.” In as much as the previous prophecy referred to events that have
not yet occurred, events that we understand will happen just prior to the
return of Jesus Christ, so this reference fairly obviously is referring to
that same period of time.
The Jewish people have suffered
unbelievably down through the ages, yet Daniel is told that even worse is to
come during these last days.
“At that time Michael, the
great prince who watches over the sons of your people, will stand up.
And there will be a time of distress such as has never happened from the
beginning of the nations until then. But at that time your people - everyone
whose name is found written in the book - will be delivered.”
Satan knows that the Saviour of the
world is returning at the appointed time, and that His physical return is
intrinsically woven around Israel and its people. Therefore if he, Satan,
can wipe out this tiny nation and its people, he can forestall the return of
But God sends the archangel Michael to
protect the remnant that will survive. This “distress” will be a terrible
time for Israel, as other prophecies in the Bible tell us that two thirds of
those in the land of Israel will perish during the last half of the seven
year tribulation period. But “those whose names are found written in the
Book – will be delivered.”
Pray for the salvation of Israel and its people!
In verse 4, Daniel is now told to
“close up and seal the words of the scroll until the time of the end ...” I
am sure that Daniel could not understand all that he had been shown, but he
was being told to preserve the revelations he had been given so that future
generations, and in particular the last generation, would be able to read
God’s warnings of events in the last days.
Verse 4 concludes with the statement
that, “Many will go back and forth, and knowledge will increase.”
Surely this implies that at that time,
knowledge and understanding of the Bible, and especially events leading up
to the return of Jesus would be understood – much as they are today! Who can
doubt that knowledge has undergone an expediential growth in the last 100
From aircraft to rockets visiting the
planets, from adding machines to computers, from the finding of medicines
and drugs to cure diseases to the implanting of new body organs, the list
goes on and on.
For some of us the majority of this
knowledge increase has occurred in the space of a single lifetime. Surely
this prophecy must have almost reached its fulfillment?
I am sure that after being told to
seal this information up until the appropriate time, Daniel would have had a
question in his mind of just when would this time be. But God beats him to
it! The angels voice the question for him – “How long will it be before
these astonishing things are fulfilled?” And then they answer their own
question by saying, “It will be for a time, times and half a time.” (v 6-7).
At first glance it appears that the
angel was asking for a date when these things would occur, but the answer
shows that he was in fact asking how long the “distress” would last. The
answer was that it would last for a period of 3½ years – a time (one year),
times (2 years) and half a time (half a year.)
And at the end of that period of time
the “power of the holy people will be finally broken.” (v 7). In the Bible
the “holy people” are the Jewish race, so it would seem that this verse is a
reference to the fact that it will take all of this terrible time of
suffering to break the pride of the Jewish people, at least those that are
left, and to bring them to a point of recognizing Jesus as the Son of God
and their Saviour.
Daniel, understandably was puzzled. He
could not get his mind around what he was being told. I am sure that if he
had fully understood it all he would have been heart broken with grief
because of what would one day happen to his people. Instead he was told to
seal up all that he had been told until the world reached “the time of the
end” when it would then be understood. (v. 9-10).
Many Christians believe that we now
understand these prophecies. If this is true then we can conclude that the
return of Jesus Christ is indeed drawing near!
Verses 11 and 12 are the subject of
some debate and conjecture.
“From the time that
the regular sacrifice is abolished and the abomination of desolation
is set up, there will be 1,290 days. How blessed is he who keeps
waiting and attains to the 1,335 days!”
We know from other verses (Daniel 9:27
and Revelation 13) that the “abolishment of the daily sacrifice and the
setting up of the abomination that causes desolation” occurs at the midpoint
of the seven year tribulation period.
This second half of the Tribulation
consists of 1,260 days (3½ Biblical years of 360 days each). Yet Daniel
12:11-12 refers to 1,290 days and 1,335 days.
The Bible gives us no explanation as
to the significance of these two sets of days, but by the very fact that
they are recorded means that they are important.
These figures may indicate that there
are 75 days beyond the Tribulation (that is, 1260 + 30 + 45 making 1,335),
before Messiah’s kingdom begins to function.
Daniel is now told to “go his way” and
that he will soon find rest (die). But at the end of the days he will be
raised to reap his rewards in Heaven. (v 13).
What a debt we owe this mighty man of
God. Through Daniel comes a large part of our knowledge and understanding of
events leading up to and surrounding that wonderful event we look forward to
so much – the return of Jesus Christ.
Many of the events Daniel was shown
have now occurred yet many more have yet to be fulfilled. Are we the
generation which will see the final working out of God’s plan culminating in
the return of Jesus Christ for His Bride? Oh how I hope and pray that we
As we go to sleep tonight, let us
ponder the possibility that we may awake in heaven, having taken part in the
Rapture. Or maybe there are still some years to go to the Rapture! Only God
knows - but we are exhorted to be ready and watching for that glorious
Friends, let us live each day as
though it might be our last, looking forward to our eternal reward, and
striving to take as many people with us as possible.
May God bless you, and may we meet one
day in heaven.
firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: mannaministries.cjb.net
PRAY FOR THE MINISTRY OF BRO BOB HINES
SLAVERY AND OPPRESSION
Millions of children across the world,
some as young as six, are forced to work up to 15-hour days as domestic
workers. Many are beaten, starved and sexually abused.
There are 200,000 child domestic
workers in Kenya, 550,000 in Brazil and 264,000 in Pakistan.
300,000 children under 15 are involved
with fighting forces, including government armies. Boys and girls in at
least 13 countries are actively being recruited as child soldiers or as army
Around 11,000 children in the
Democratic Republic of Congo are currently being held by fighting groups.
FORCED CHILD MARRIAGE
Child marriage, which often includes
mail order and internet brides, is one of the most widespread - yet hidden -
forms of slavery. Girls as young as four are forced to live and have sex
with their husband, and are often kept trapped indoors.
Girls under 15 are five times more
likely to die during pregnancy and childbirth than women over 20. In
Afghanistan more than half of all girls are married before they are 16.
INDIA: CHRISTIANS FORCED TO
JUNE 07. Hindus have confronted a
group of Christian evangelists, forcing them into a nearby village temple to
perform a ritual to “reconvert” them to the Hindu religion, according to a
new report from the Voice of the Martyrs.
A report from the Hindu American
Foundation accused a long list of Christian organizations, including some
providing aid in India, of promoting hatred. The report said, “The
proliferation of websites promoting religious hatred is an unfortunate
consequence of the universality of access to the internet.”
JUNE 07. A new law has been passed in
West Sumatra, which will take effect in 2008. According to this new law all
school students must pass an exam in the Quran, irrespective of their faith.
The same rule applies to engaged couples of any faith: they cannot marry
until they have passed the Quran exam, even if they are Christians.
LOOK UP! THE MESSIAH IS COMING SOON!