Little Things

Question: “Does God care about the little things that happen in our lives?”

Answer: Of course, God cares about the little things in our lives, because everything is “little” compared to His Word says, “Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” God takes the time to keep up with how many hairs we have—now that’s a God of detail!

Throughout Scripture, we see that God is interested in more than just the highlights of our lives as His children. He cares about every aspect of who we are, because we are His creation made in His image. He cares for all of His creations, including plants, animals, and the environment, look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? If God even meets the needs of birds who are not made in His image, who have no will to choose Him or reject Him, how much more will he care for our needs in detail? Because of God’s care, we can trust Him: “Your Father knows what you need before you ask him”

Throughout Jesus’ earthly ministry, we see that He was interested in the specifics of people’s lives. Jesus has always been more interested in quality than quantity. Jesus was sent to save the lost and bridge the gap between man and God since the fall, but He still took the time to meet the immediate needs of people He encountered. In Matthew, we see a clear picture of Jesus’ compassion on the hungry crowds. One meal in the lives of so many is but a detail, yet we have an amazing account of His earnestness in providing a heaven-sent meal for over 5,000 men, women, and children.

Children are “little things” and often seen to get in the way of the more “important” things. In fact, once when people brought their children to Jesus, the disciples rebuked them with the thought of sending them away. “When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Jesus is not too “big” or too busy to bless the children.

God does indeed care about the “little things” in our lives, because He cares about us. Compared to Him and His glory, our whole lives are made up of those “little things”.

Psalm 139:17 How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!18 If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.

 

Thanks Got Questions Ministries

Our Daily Bread

I remember watching television news reports in 1991 as the nonviolent revolution took place in the streets of Moscow. Russians who had grown up in totalitarianism suddenly declared, “We will act as if we are free,” taking to the streets and staring down tanks. The contrast between the faces of the leaders inside and the masses outside showed who was really afraid, and who was really free.

Watching the newsreels from Red Square on Finnish television, I came up with a new definition of faith: paranoia in reverse. A truly paranoid person organizes his or her life around a common perspective of fear. Anything that happens feeds that fear.

Faith works in reverse. A faithful person organizes his or her life around a common perspective of trust, not fear. Despite the apparent chaos of the present moment, God does reign. Regardless of how I may feel, I truly matter to a God of love.

What could happen if we in God’s kingdom truly acted as if the words of the apostle John were literally true: “He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4). What if we really started living as if the most-repeated prayer in Christendom has actually been answered—that God’s will be done on earth as it is in heaven?

odb

Hold On

Hold Fast

“But that which ye have already, hold fast till I come. And he that overcometh, and keepeth My works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations. And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.” – Revelation 2:25-27

In these days there will be more temptation to get away from the Word of God, the blood atonement, and salvation by grace through faith. Churches will be under attack by seducing spirits and doctrines of demons. Here in Jesus’ message to Thyatira He says, “You hold fast till I come.”

Even though it seems to be tough, remember this, dear friend—the saints are going to have their day. Look in verse 26. One of these days Jesus is going to come and rule this world, and we are going to rule with Him.

If we suffer with Him, we’ll also reign with Him (2 Timothy 2:12). We are even going to judge angels (1 Corinthians 6:3). It may not be long before Jesus comes and His millennial reign begins here on this earth. The Bible clearly says that it’s going to be a powerful reign (v. 27).

Don’t give up, don’t let down. Hold fast, stick to it, stay with the Word of God. Hold fast that old truth. Hold fast to this old Book and don’t let go.

A.Rogers

Bible Study

THE JUDGMENT OF THE BABYLONIAN HARLOT     Revelation 17:1-18

In chapter 16 we witnessed the final judgment of God against this world. We saw God judgement on this world through a series of powerful plagues. We also witnessed the defiance of fallen man. Even in the face of judgment, man refused to repent it shouldn’t surprise us; man refused to repent in the face of Law and man has refused to repent in this age of grace. Man is an incorrigible sinner, and apart, from the grace of God, mankind is hopelessly lost!

The last plague in Rev. 16:17-21 brought about a great earthquake that destroyed the cities of the world. This earthquake destroyed everything that represented the greatest accomplishments of humanity. All of mankind’s centers of pleasure and profit are wiped out.

Since the dawn of time man has been in the business of trying to get by without God. Man rests on his power, his accomplishments, his ability to produce and his ability to enjoy pleasure. In that last great judgment, everything man trusts is taken away.

What we have in chapters 17 and 18 is another parenthetical passage. These two chapters give us the details of the destruction of the Babylonian system. In chapter 17 we will see the destruction of religious Babylon. In chapter 18 we will see the destruction of economic Babylon.

         

  I.  v. 1-6     THE BABYLONIAN HARLOT DESCRIBED

The first verse tells us that we are going to witness “the judgment of the great whore.” The word “whore” is a word that we do not use in decent company. But, it is a word used by the Bible, so we must deal with it. It translates the Greek word “porne”, which refers to “a woman who sells her body for sexual uses; a harlot; a prostitute.” It is also used to refer to a woman who is an “idolatress”. In this passage the word refers to the whole system of false religion embraced by this world. These verses teach us about this system of false religion and how it will be judged someday.

A.  v. 1  The Scope Of This System – We are told that the harlot “sitteth upon many waters”. Verse 15 gives us the commentary on this verse. What we see here is a one world religious system.

        Right now there are thousands of religions on this planet, and there is little agreement between them. The primary religions recognized by most people are Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism and Hinduism. Most of the world’s population observes one of these religions.There will come a day when all the religions of the world will be brought together under one banner. The Antichrist, or the False Prophet, will have a plan that will iron out all the difference between these systems of belief. One day there will be a one world religion.

        There is already a great push in that direction now. There is an ecumenical movement working in our day that is seeking to bring all the religions of the world together.

        Christianity is different from all other religions on the earth because it is not really a religion, it is a faith. When the Rapture occurs, all true Christians will be removed from this world. What will be left will be those who “have a form of godliness but deny the power thereof”. Those people will be easy prey for the devil and demonic religion.

B.  v. 2  The Seduction Of This System – According to verse 2 the entire world will come under the spell of this great end-time religion. Kings and world leaders will be a part of the movement. The whole world will be intoxicated by the teaching of this false system of belief. Like a slick seductress, this great harlot will seduce the world with her promises and her power.

C.  v. 3  The Supporters Of This System – This harlot is supported by the Antichrist. The Antichrist is the “beast” and he carries this religious system to great power in the world.

        The phrase “full of names of blaspheme” reminds us that Antichrist will set himself up as God. He will enter the Jewish Temple and he will demand that the world worship him, 2 Thes. 2:3-4. He will demand worship and a deluded world will give him what he desires, 2 Thes. 2:11. He will give this religion its power.

        According to verse 9, this system sits on “seven hills”. This could be a reference to ancient Rome which was built on seven hills. Some people think that this reference ties this system in with Roman Catholicism. However, the seven hills could be a reference to the seven continents, which would indicate that this system is worldwide in nature

D.  v. 4  The Success Of This System – Just as a prostitute usually dresses provocatively to draw attention to herself, so does this false religious system. This religion wears the colors “purple and scarlet”. These are the colors of royalty and nobility. She is “decked with gold and precious stones and pearls”. This speaks to her wealth and prosperity. This system will be wealthy beyond words. This is true of many of the “great religious systems” of our day. There is big money on religion! Some people grow very wealthy at the expense of others!

                The Bible tells us that this system is well connected and prosperous, but it is all a pretense. This harlot holds in her hands “a golden cup full of abominations and filthiness of her fornications.” While this religion appears healthy, good and prosperous on the outside, it is really filled with corruption. It is an abomination to God! 

E.  v. 5  The Spirit Of This System – In ancient times, it was common for prostitutes to wear identification so that prospective customers could recognize them. This system is identified by God as “the mother of harlots and abominations of the earth.

        When we speak of Babylon, many people immediately think of a city. And, it is a city located in the country of Iraq. Babylon the city was once the grandest capital of the most powerful nation in the world. Today, it is abandoned by everyone by archaeologists and historians. But, Babylon is also a system. Babylon is described as the system from which every false religious system in the world originated. That is what the title “mother” implies.

        This Babylonian system first appears in Genesis 11:1-9. The city was called Babel then and was founded by a very wicked man named Nimrod. The people of Babel decided to build themselves a tower so that they could leave their mark on the world, Gen. 11:3-4. The flood was fresh in their minds and they wanted to leave their mark on the world. This tower was not designed to reach into Heaven as some think. It was designed as a temple of Heaven. The constellations were placed on the top of this tower and men climbed it to worship the heavenly bodies, Gen. 11:4. This tower, and the religion in represented, is the first of many false religions started by man. They were the first false religionists, but they would not be the last. However, the same seeds of humanism and pride that are found in their attempt at forming their own religion can be found in every religion founded by man!

        God judged these people for their rebellion and for their foolish worship. Just as He judged them, He will one day judge all the false religions of the world. That is what we see here in Revelation 17. This chapter clearly reveals what will happen to the false religions of this world at the end of the Tribulation Period.

F.  v. 6  The Slaughter Of This System – This system of belief is responsible for the deaths of every saint of God who has ever died at the hands of false religion. From the death of Abel, to the prophets, to the early Christian martyrs, to the martyrs of the inquisition, all the way the millions of martyrs of the Tribulation; every single death can laid at the feet of the Babylonian harlot. She is responsible for the deaths of God’s children and she will be judged for her blood thirsty ways!

 

I.  The Babylonian Harlot Described 

II.  v. 7-15       THE BABYLONIAN SYSTEM DEMYSTIFIED

A.  v. 7-11  The Beast Demystified – Verse 8 refers to the miracle of the power of a once powerful government to basically die and the come back as a world empire. Some people think it could be the old Roman Empire, which has been dead for years.

B.  v. 12-13  The Benefactors Demystified – These two verses refer to ten kings who will give their allegiance and power to the Antichrist. In return, he gives them great power and authority. These kings are wholly committed to the reign of the Antichrist. They are given a kingdom, but their reign is short lived,  one hour”.

C.  v. 14  The Battle Demystified – As we mentioned in our last study, the nations of the world under the direction the Antichrist and his kings will gather to do battle with Jesus Christ at Armageddon. They are fighting a losing battle because they are foolish enough to attack the Lamb. The Lamb they attack is the “king of Kings and the Lord of Lords.” He will destroy them with the word of His mouth, Rev. 19:11-21. We will get to that in a few weeks!

        This verse also refers to those who are with the Lamb when He does battle with the world. These people who are “called, and chosen and faithful” refer to the Bride of Christ. This, my friends, is us! When He comes, we are coming with Him! We will watch the Lamb do battle and shout for Him as He claims victory over all His enemies! What a day that will be!

 

I.  The Babylonian Harlot Described

II. The Babylonian Harlot Demystified

III.  v. 16-17        THE BABYLONIAN HARLOT DESTROYED

A.  v. 16  The Reality Of The Harlot’s Destruction – After the Antichrist and his minions use the harlot to achieve power, they will turn on her. When they have reached the pinnacle of success, they have no more need of a religious system. They turn on the Harlot and they totally destroy her.

B.  v. 17  The Reason For The Harlot’s Destruction – Antichrist and his followers do not know it, but they are merely doing the will of the Lord. He is the One Who puts it into their hearts to destroy the Babylonian religious system. God uses these wicked men to carry out His will against false religion.

        God hates false religion! In the end of the world, He will use the ungodly to destroy the ungodly. Ill. Organized religion is a disgrace to God! When ritual, tradition and the doctrines of men take prominence over the Lord God, it is false worship. It does not matter what name they have over the door. It does not matter what they claim to be. When anything or anyone but Jesus Christ is the center of attention, it is a false religion and it will be destroyed by God one day!

        When the Tribulation Period ends, all false religion will have been destroyed. This will pave the way for the Millennial reign of Jesus. He will usher in a one thousand year period of time when people will worship no one but Him, at least openly!

 

Conc: Did you know that man is a religious creature? That’s right, all people worship something. Everyone believes something. Even the person who claims to be an atheist believes in his unbelief. When it is all said and done this thing comes down to two simple choices: Jesus Christ or false religion!

        Every belief system in the world that does not center on the Lord Jesus is a false system of belief; it is a false religion. How can I say that?

Look what Jesus said, John 14:6, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” Look again, Acts 4:12, “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”   One more, John 8:24, “I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.

Tuesday With Karen

Even in our darkest day, God is still leading the way! KI

If We Give It To God

If we give it to God, putting it in His hands,
We’ll see Him work in ways we can’t understand;
His sweet breath will whisper, “Peace, be still,”
When we’re in the center of God’s perfect will!

If we give it to God, He knows just what to do,
There’s nothing His love won’t lead us through;
We worry much less when we give it all to Him,
Not only is He God, but also a faithful Friend!

If we give it to God, His hand is mighty strong,
His touch has a way to make right from wrong;
He’s never alarmed by things that take place,
But each day a new, He supplies us with grace!

Our load will be lighter if we give it to God,
He keeps His promise, His word changes not;
Anytime we may have a heartache or care,
He’s ready to listen when we cry in prayer!

9-6-19

Faith

Everybody falls sometimes
Gotta find the strength to rise
From the ashes
And make a new beginning

Anyone can feel the ache
You think it’s more than you can take
But you’re stronger
Stronger than you know

Don’t you give up now
The sun will soon be shining
You gotta face the clouds
To find the silver lining

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do

It doesn’t matter what you’ve heard
Impossible is not a word
It’s just a reason
For someone not to try

Everybody’s scared to death
When they decide to take that step
Out on the water
It’ll be alright

Life is so much more
Than what your eyes are seeing
You will find your way
If you keep believing

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do

Overcome the odds
You don’t have a chance
(That’s what faith can do)
When the world says you can’t
It’ll tell you that you can

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
And I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do
That’s what faith can do

Even if you fall sometimes
You will have the strength to rise.

DAVIS, WILLIAM SCOTT/KRIPPAYNE, SCOTT

 

 

It’s The Little Things

by Meagan Davis

God Always Works

“Does it ever seem like you are just drowning? Maybe it’s as if you know God is there, but you don’t know where to find Him.”

Trials were definitely coming every year. Friends change. Finances bottom out. Our bodies fail. Electronics die. Classes get canceled and moved around. People disappoint. Things just don’t always go the way we planned them to. We cannot count on the things that this life has to offer us. They just won’t always work.

But God always works.

If there is one thing that I have learned this past year at school, it’s this: God is always faithful.

Lamentations 3:22-23 says, “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.”

God is faithful when you lose a friend. God is faithful when money runs out. God is faithful when your body breaks down. God is faithful when your computer crashes. God is faithful when you’re schedule doesn’t work out. God is faithful when people fail you.

God is even faithful. . . when I am not faithful to Him.

It’s easy to feel like you’re drowning.

I could give you example after example from God’s Word of people who thought they were drowning, some quite literally. See Job’s life, his doubt, and his blessing in the end. Go read about the Israelites in the book of Judges. See Samson lose all his strength and then pull the pillars down. Listen to Moses’s excuses and see the promised land. Look at David’s fear of death and his sin. Watch him be a man after God’s own heart. Watch Peter as he almost drowns, and then he becomes one of the greatest preachers.

It’s so easy to get caught up in the trials. It’s easy to get stuck and to want to give up. It’s so easy.

But please don’t.

God does not give up you. Don’t give up on Him.

Light

God Said, “Let There Be Light”

“And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.”  Genesis 1:3

“God said…”  To better understand how this very first day of creation can apply to our lives let’s turn to the New Testament, the book of John.  The Apostle John referred to himself as “the one whom Jesus loved” and even though Jesus had earthly brothers, Christ left the care of His mother to John as part of His last Words on the cross.  We can find great insight from this close friend in John 1:1-5, 9-10 & 14.

“1  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

2  The same was in the beginning with God.

3  All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

4  In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

5  And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not…

9  That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.

10  He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not…

14  And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.”

God spoke and brought light to a world of darkness.  The fall of Adam brought sin to God’s creation and once again the world experienced darkness.  God gave His only begotten Son, Jesus, to bring Light to a lost world.  “Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life”  .(John 8:12)  In these first three verses of the Bible we have seen God the Father, God the Holy Spirit, and God the Son.

 

Bible Study

FINAL JUDGMENT COMMENCES Revelation 16

There is no denying the fact that the book of Revelation is a book of judgment. It was written to people in the first century who were smiting under the angry whip of Roman persecution. It was given to them to let them know that God has a plan for the judgment of all those who have rejected Him.

      While there are passages that allow for rejoicing in the chapters of this book, it is, for the most part, a chronicle of God’s final judgment of sin, sinners and Satan. In Revelation there is a series of three judgments which are executed in seven stages each. There are the seven seal judgments, the seven trumpet judgments and finally the seven bowl judgments. As the judgments progress, the intensity and severity of the judgments increase.

      We have arrived at the final set of judgments. In Rev. 15:7 shows one of the four beasts giving to seven angels seven bowls “full” of the wrath of God. Just as a reminder, the word “full” means “to swell”. It is the image of a dam, under pressure, nearing its bursting point. This is a good description of the wrath of God.

      Ever since Adam sinned in Eden, the wrath of God against sin and sinners has been building. The grace and mercy of God have served as a powerful dam, which has held that wrath in check. In the judgments of the Revelation, the dam of God’s wrath bursts and a Christ rejecting world is swept away in the wave of judgment that issues forth.

      Up to this point, God has always tempered His wrath. God has been faithful to honor the request of the prophet Habakkuk. In Hab. 3:2, the prophet prayed, “in wrath remember mercy.” But, now the time for judgment has come. There will be no mercy any longer. The wrath of God is about to be poured out. God is preparing to commence His final judgment of the earth.

      In Rev. 14:10, John writes, “The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation.” In these verses, the world is about to experience the undiluted wrath of an offended God.

      In verse 1 God issues the command for the angels to begin pouring out the bowls filled with His wrath upon the earth. 

PLAGUES IN THE  SINNER  vs 2

A. When the first bowl is poured out, all those who have worshiped the beast and who have received his mark are afflicted with sores in the bodies. The word “sore” literally means “an ulcer”. It has the idea of an open, running, ulcerated place on the skin. It probably refers to an oozing boil.

      These sores are called “noisome”. This word means “of a bad nature, troublesome, injurious”. They are also described as “grievous”. This word refers to something that is “annoying, painful, or bad”. These two words reveal that these sores will be extremely painful, festering and incurable.

      No doubt the greatest medical minds of the age will do their best to find a cure, but they will fail. There will be no cream, no poultice, or no drug that will bring relief to the people suffering from these boils.

These festering ulcers bring to mind the ancient plagues in Egypt. The sixth of those plagues is found in Ex. 9:8-12. In that plague, the people of Egypt suffered from incurable, painful boils all over their bodies. This seems to be the same kind of physical problem Job experienced, Job 2:7.

PLAGUES IN THE SEA  vs 3

When the second bowl is poured out, the waters of earth’s oceans are corrupted and become like the putrid, fetid blood of a corpse. Back in Rev. 8:8-9, when the second trumpet judgment was administered, one-third of the ocean was affected. Here, the cataclysm is worldwide. This will greatly effect the world food supply fro the seas. Without this source of food, millions will face starvation.

 

PLAGUES IN THE STREAMS    v. 4-7  

When the third bowl is poured out, the fresh water sources of this world are stricken. Again, we saw this in miniature back in Rev. 8:10-11, when one-third of the world’s fresh water supplies were poisoned when a comet, a meteor, or some other heavenly body fell in to them.

      Here, they are turned to blood. By the time this plague is poured out on the earth, the world has become absolutely blood thirsty. Millions of martyrs have been slain by the Antichrist and his forces. Millions of saints have had their blood shed by the enemies of God. He honors their desire for blood by giving them blood to drink. When Jesus was here, His first miracle was to turn water into wine. That miracle was designed to draw men to Him. Here He turns the water into blood to remind men of Him. One by one, the Lord is removing every prop, every comfort, everything mankind leans on for support and takes for granted. 

PLAGUES IN THE SUN  vs 8-9

The fourth plague touches the sun. Its heat is allowed to burn the bodies of men. The word “scorch” means “to be burned with heat; to be tortured with intense heat.” By some means, God will allow the heat of the sun to be intensified and the bodies of men will be burned.

This universe is an amazing place. God created everything and placed it exactly where it needed to be. The sun is some 93 million miles away from the earth. It sits at exactly the precise distance to allow life to exist on this planet. If the sun were any closer, we would be burned up. If the sun were any farther away, we would freeze to death. God placed it exactly where it needs to be.

Since the dawn of time the sun has risen every morning and sat every evening. It has yielded life-giving, dependable heat and light for thousands of years. One day, mankind will awaken to a sun that will blaze down in flaming heat. It will scorch their bodies. But, it will be nothing compared to the pain they will feel when they are cast into Hell’s fire. This is just a warning of something far more terrible and final! 

THE BEAST IS PLAGUED   v. 10a

Up until now the Beast has been somewhat sheltered from direct attack. When this fifth bowl is poured out, it is directed at the very seat of his power. Like Pharaoh in ancient Egypt, the Antichrist, with all his power is helpless against the judgment of God Almighty. This plague begins at the very throne room of the Antichrist and then spreads to cover his entire kingdom. He may be a powerful ruler, energized and supported by Satan, but he is helpless to defend himself against the God of Heaven!

When the fifth bowl judgment is unleashed upon the world, the world is suddenly engulfed in darkness. This darkness is not the darkness we normally think of, it is absolute, inky blackness. The darkness will be so complete that nothing can penetrate it. Surely this darkness represents some change in the way light reaches the planet. It also suggests that the power grids that we use to light the earth will be done away with. Whatever causes this darkness, it will be severe and it will be complete.

      This supernaturally imposed darkness is a tangible representation of the darkness that has already engulfed the world. The world has already rejected the Light of the World, the Lord Jesus, because they loved darkness rather than light, John 3:19. This world chose moral, spiritual, intellectual, and emotional darkness over the light that was available in the person of Jesus Christ and in the Word of God. They favored darkness over light and God gives them more darkness than they ever bargained for!

      We are also told that when this darkness descends, men will literally chew their tongues because their pain is so great. The combined misery of the sores in their bodies; starvation from the ruined oceans; the lack of drinkable water and terrible burns they have suffered from the intense heat of the sun, all combine to cause the inhabitants of the earth to writhe in pain.  

      

A BATTLE IS PLANNED  v. 12-16 

The sixth bowl is poured out on the earth and it sets the stage for the battle of Armageddon. When this angel pours out his bowl, we are told that the Euphrates River will dry up. The Euphrates begins in Turkey at Mount Ararat and flows south, through Iraq, and into the Persian Gulf. This river, which is over 1,700 miles long and 3,600 feet wide at places, has been for centuries, the dividing line between the east and the west. As we know, no river really poses a problem for a modern mechanized army, but God will remove every obstacle and prepare the way for a massive invasion of Middle East.

      How will the river be dried up? Considering the fact that the oceans and all fresh waters have been turned to blood, the amount of rainfall the earth has received has been dramatically reduced; some have speculated that water levels would be far lower than normal anyway. Add to this the fact that many dams have been built along the river, it would be very easy for human engineers to cut off the water. However, the fourth bowl intensified the heat of the sun. This would cause the snow and the ice cap on Mount Ararat to melt, causing the Euphrates to overflow its banks. Either way, it will be the result of divine intervention. God will speak and the waters of the Euphrates will cease to flow so that a massive army can pass.

A.  v. 12  An Army – We are told that an vast eastern army will use the highway created by the drying up of the Euphrates River to move toward Israel. The intention of this army is the total destruction of Israel. The phrase “kings of the east” literally means “the kings of the rising sun”. This reference has caused many to speculate that China and her allies will be the source of this army. Back in Rev. 9:16, the Bible speaks of an army that numbers some 200 million. Only one nation on earth could raise an army of that size: China.

      However, I would like to propose a different interpretation. The way things are shaping up in our world, we are headed toward a showdown between the Islam and the Jews. Ever since the United Nations took Palestinian lands and gave it to the Jews, there has been conflict in that region, The Arab nations that surround Israel have repeatedly tried to oust the Jews from Palestine; they have failed in every attempt. Though outnumbered some seven to one, the Israelis have defeated their Arab enemies every time they met on the field of battle. This has created great hostility in the hearts of the Arab nations.

      Imagine returning home to land that had been in your family for centuries only to find someone else living there and you and your family evicted with no place to go. The Arabs hate the Jews and they long for the total destruction of the nation of Israel. I think that is what we are seeing in these verses.

      While Islam paints itself in colors of peace and love, the religion also calls for the deaths of all Jews and Christians. Anyone who is not a Muslim is an infidel in their eyes, and infidels must either repent or die! Dr. Ken Trivette, in a sermon on these verses, shares the following quotations from the Qur’an.

·         Qur’an 59:14 “The Jews are devoid of sense. There is a grievous punishment awaiting them. Satan tells them not to believe so they will end up in Hell.”

·         Qur’an 4:55 “Sufficient for the Jew is the Flaming Fire!”

·         Qur’an 88:1 “Has the narration reached you of the overwhelming (calamity)? Some faces (all disbelievers, Jews and Christians) that Day, will be humiliated, downcast, scorched by the burning fire, while they are made to drink from a boiling hot spring.”

      It would be for radical Islam to field a massive army bent on the annihilation of the Jews and their state. It may be Islam that leads a final, fatal Jihad against the nation of Israel.

B.  v. 13-14  The Antagonists – When this judgment is poured out, three frogs are seen coming out of the mouths of the dragon, the Beast and the false prophet. Frogs are unclean creatures and are used here to refer to evil spirits, or demons. The mouth is the source of influence. So, it seems that Satan will inspire the worlds of these hellish world leaders and they will whip their followers into a frenzy for a final assault against Israel. They are able to form a coalition between the world’s armies. This final war will be satanically inspired and energized.

C.  v. 15  An Announcement – On the heels of this judgment a heavenly announcement is made. Ever since Jesus ascended back into Heaven, it has been prophesied that He would return, Acts 1:9-11. Seven years prior to these events, Christ did return and He received His bride into Heaven. That was the Rapture. This verse is referring to the Second Coming. Jesus is telling His precious people to hang on for just a little longer. His coming that has been imminent has become immediate! He is at the door! The saints of God are encouraged to keep the faith for a few more days, the Lord is coming! He is coming like a thief. The world will not see the signs, but He will come in an instant and bring judgment with Him. Jesus lets His people know, however, that their waiting is over.

D.  v. 16  Armageddon – This army has been assembled by Satan to destroy the people of God. The devil still thinks that he is in control! A quick glance at the Scripture paints a different picture altogether. Verse 14 tells us that this army is being gathered “to the battle of that great day of God Almighty”. Then, verse 16 says, “He gathered them together…” Satan may think that he is in control of these events, but the real Ringmaster is God Himself. He gathers the nations of the world in the valley of Megiddo so that He might engage them and destroy them in one moment of time.

      

BABYLON IS PLUNDERED   v. 17-21        

The seventh bowl is poured out. When it is, the awful wrath of God and His judgments against the earth are ended. Also, in this final judgment, this world system is destroyed. Since the dawn of time man has moved in rebellion to God. He has rebelled in his personal life, his public life, his political life and his productive life. In these verses, that entire world system is brought crashing down and man is left with nothing! Let’s look in as Babylon is plundered.

A.  v. 17  A Sentence Is Rendered – As this bowl is poured out, a voice from the throne says, “It is done!” This statement signals the fact that judgment has reached an end. The Lord Jesus is on His way. He is prepared to take back everything Adam lost in the fall. He is preparing to claim everything He purchased at the cross. Jesus is about to receive the glory He is due. When Jesus was on the cross, He cried, “It is finished!” There He announced His victory. Here, He cries, “It is done!” Here He announces His verdict. There He cried out in joy; here He cries out in judgment. He is letting us know that we have reached the end of judgment; glory is just around the corner.

B.  v. 18-21a  A System Is Ruined – God has been in the process of judging the earth all the way through the Tribulation. Wave after wave of divine wrath has washed over this world and its inhabitants and still this world system stands in continued defiance to the will of God in Heaven. Here, in one final stroke, God destroys the last vestiges of human power. In one final judgment, God removes the last of man’s props. God destroys everything that man has built and glories in. In a moment of time, the world is brought to its knees. Let’s take a minute to unpack these verses.

C.  v. 21b  All Sinners Are Revealed – Even after all they have been through, the inhabitants of the world refuse to repent. They continue to blaspheme God. It is hard to imagine that the human heart can be so hard. Yet, the condition of sinners under judgment proves that lost people are totally depraved and will not repent!

      I praise the Lord that He came to me in grace and called me to Him! What love! What grace! What a Savior that would condescend to love sinners like me! He was good to me even when I was in rebellion to Him. It was goodness that won my heart and yours, Rom. 2:4.  despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?

Victory Baptist Church 04 September 2019 victorypalmetto.com

Wade’s Wednesday

Finding the Way Home

By Randy Kilgore

[God] Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. 2 Corinthians 1:4

Sometimes this journey through life can be so difficult that we’re simply overwhelmed, and it seems there’s no end to the darkness. During such a time in our own family’s life, my wife emerged one morning from her quiet time with a new lesson learned. “I think God wants us not to forget in the light what we’re learning in this darkness.”

Paul writes this same thought to the Corinthians (2 Corinthians 1), after describing the terrible difficulties he and his team endured in Asia. Paul wants the Corinthians to understand how God can redeem even our darkest moments. We’re comforted, he says, so we may learn how to comfort others (v. 4). Paul and his team were learning things from God during their trials that they could use to comfort and advise the Corinthians when they faced similar difficulties. And God does that for us as well, if we’re willing to listen. He will redeem our trials by teaching us how to use what we’ve learned in them to minister to others.

Are you in the darkness now? Be encouraged by Paul’s words and experience. Trust that God is right now directing your steps and that He’s also stamping His truths on your heart so you can share them with others who are in similar circumstances. You’ve been there before, and you know the way home. By Randy Kilgore

Insight: When . . .  suffering is poured into our lives, God will transform it by His supernatural grace and power. Just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows.

For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.(2 Cor. 1:5).

When trouble flows in, look to God for His overflowing comfort—first to us, then through us to others.