Wednesday, December 20, 2017

JPost Stacking the Deck of Public Opinion Against Messianics

Last week a Jerusalem Post article titled, Will Israel Ever Accept Messianic Jews? came to my notice. The sub-heading read: Indeed, Messianic Jews are largely shunned by mainstream Jewish communities around the world, and are commonly seen as proselytizers.
It also noted: 

> Rabbinical court rules against Jewish marriage rites for Messianic Jews and
> Study: One-fifth of Jewish millennials believe Jesus is the son of God

Apparently the writer, Tamara Zieve was doing damage control after bad press from the recent case of a Swedish Messianic Jew, the daughter of a Holocaust survivor, was deported last month because of her faith in Yeshua. This was an attempt to justify an unjust, if not illegal deportation of a Jew who believes in Jesus.

After reading the article, I was quite annoyed by it and began to attempt to post comment. This began a struggle as over the next 30 to 45 minutes I struggled to re-register to the JPost site and post my comment which kept disappearing - sometimes completely and sometimes with my closing thought cut off mid-sentence.. I would re-enter it again, but over and over my comment would disappear just as I posted it.

Finally after struggling all that time to get my comment posted, I was suddenly redirected to a page that warned me Visually and Audibly that I was on a Malicious Pornographic page attempting to infect my computer. I had to shut down my browser to get out of it.

Say what you will about "coincidences", but it is not the first time that the Jerusalem Post has blocked my comments regarding the Messianic Jews of Israel, nor is it the me only who has experienced technical obstruction. I have heard of other pro-Messianic comments being blocked. I was so angry about it that I went to Twitter where JPost on Twitter follows me and I tweeted:

Afterwards, some on Facebook reported that they saw my incomplete post on Jpost website. Yes: I am publicly accusing the Jerusalem Post online of purposefully obstructing by technical means the comments of those who are pro-Messianic faith. This has been going on for years, and it must be stopped!

With that said, here is the comment that I sought to post: 

This article is a case of strongly prejudicial reporting and certainly reflects more on the reporter's biases than upon the reality on the ground. I know a large amount of Israeli Messianic Jews and of their communities, and these are people who are not "largely shunned" by anyone except the ultra-religious sects which are often at odds with the thinking of mainstream Israelis. In fact, in many Israeli arenas, the Messianic Jews are thought of as highly honorable, generous, loyal and courageous people.

Also  prejudicially stated: "Messianic Jews are largely shunned by mainstream Jewish communities around the world". Around the world Messianic Jews enjoy their own space of worshipping God as they see fit, like many of the sects of Judaism which the ultra-religious in Israel also look down upon.  Plus, it is only in Israel where the government has ALLOWED the ultra-religious to judge the authenticity of faith of all other sects of Judaism. Everywhere else in the world Jews of every religious or non-religious point of view can live without fear of being expelled by the narrow-minded decisions of ultra-religious Jews. They can get married in their own nation. They don't have to fear the stalking of their children, homes and workplaces. 

This article is so slanted, in fact, it is worthless - except to try to trick people into thinking some is bad wrong with Messianic Jews in Israel in order to justify injustice against them. Sorry but you can't explain away injustice with what amounts to a false narrative against these good people. -end-

I believe it is important for Christians who support Israel to STOP letting abusive conduct and statements about the Israeli community of Messianic Jews go by unchallenged. They are our spiritual family in Jesus, and if you think it will ingratiate you to Israeli Jews, it may for some, but God will be sorely displeased by the betrayal. 

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

We Three Kings of Orient Are

How appropriate that on "Giving Tuesday" I awoke thinking about why the first century believers banded together, pooling their resources so everyone would have enough to live on as they were witnesses of the faith of Yeshua . . . .and how there is a similar dynamic going on in Israel today.

I have long believed that from the time of Acts 12 when Herod executed James the brother of John, and then also arrested Peter because it pleased the unsaved Jews, that the apostle Paul purposely set himself to establish churches giving to help the community of faith in Israel. The reason I believe that is because it was exactly the reason Paul and Barnabus traveled to Jerusalem where they became witness to the events that saw James was killed by Herod and Peter imprisoned. (Acts 11:26-12:3)

Paul, a former extremely zealous religious persecutor of the followers of Yeshua, understood full well that this was not a problem that was going away any time soon. I believe Paul also understood that it was no coincidence that by prophetic direction of the Holy Spirit through Agabus in Antioch, they were moved to collect an offering to be taken up to Jerusalem prior to a worldwide famine to be taken to help out the believers in Israel. It was going to be a worldwide famine, yet they were taking special measures to insure that the community of faith in Israel had provision to deal with it. That is not about favoritism, it was about necessity. (Romans 11:28)

It was no coincidence then that Paul and Barnabas took the offering to give to the community of faith in Jerusalem right at the time that two major leaders of the community were targeted by authorities - one to death, one to imprisonment. We are talking about Divine timing, not coincidence. (Romans 15:27)

Paul left that scene, heading back to the churches they were establishing among the Gentiles and from that point on a major feature of his teaching was that they were to set aside donations specifically for the support of the community in Israel. (2 Corinthians 8; 16:1 & 3; Romans 15:26-27, 2 Corinthians 9:12-13; Acts 20:4).  The apostle was urging the churches to continue in the giving not because of the famine, but because the faith would always have the believers in Israel in a bind. He was absolutely correct.

To this day the Israeli ministries are financially squeezed. Only a few are funded well and most struggle. What the international Church does not recognize is that the support dynamic that the apostle Paul sought to set in motion from them to the Israeli community of faith, was an absolute necessity. It was then and it is now today. (2 Cor. 8:10-11) He often referred to the community of faith in Israel as "the poor."

That is one of the great challenges of the Israeli congregations and ministries, for there are many poor among them.  Sometimes that is because of the high cost of living in Israel, sometimes because of such a great number of immigrants with limited earning power, and sometimes it is just because of persecutions - religious pressures applied to employers and landlords against the believers.

Few Israeli ministries are banded together in order that the living needs of all are met and so that the ministries can continue to advance as they were in the Acts of the Apostles. The modern mindset considers that kind of sharing resources "communist."  I have actually heard it called "communist" by an American pastor famous for preaching a Prosperity gospel. But this isn't communist ideology, it is merely a necessity required to take care of a large network of ministers who desire to produce more fruit in Israel than they could in standalone ministries. Our friends at Tikkun Israel International practice this. It requires a deep commitment to the work of the ministry and a solid trust of each other, not dictatorial communism.

We cannot view ministry in Israel as we do in most parts of the developed world. The experiential wisdom of ministry life in the U.S., for example, is vastly different from ministry life in Israel. In America most church staff are paid good salaries, in Israel people in ministry have to raise their own individual support for the privilege of being in the ministry. There are sacrifices most church ministries have no clue their Israeli counterparts are making.  The hard fast rules that apply outside of Israel, are not always so in Israel.

Some churches have a hard fast rule that they don't donate to website ministries. Big mistake in Israel. Like our friends at who are providing a high value resource to the whole community of faith in Israel by making them known - large or small, regardless of charismatic or non - to the international churches...and interested as-yet-unsaved Israelis in their Hebrew KehilaNews site.

The same goes for numerous website-ministries in Israel that are in the Hebrew language that allow interested as-yet-unsaved Israelis to investigate the faith and hear the testimonies of Israeli believers in the complete privacy of their own homes & computers. You may have no idea what a powerful tool this is for the Medabrim or One For Israel sites. Or the internet TV and Radio ministries like Yeshuachai TV (Yeshua is Alive or Yeshua Live) or Radio Hadashot mi Israel  (Good News from Israel).

The apostle Paul understood that the need for practical material support would be an ongoing situation, and that the solution would lie in the international churches recognizing this as their duty to support the community of faith in Israel. Is it any wonder that the devil is so dead set on keeping that understanding from dawning on the international saints that there are roadblocks to understanding thrown up everywhere  from the traditional denominational churches to the charismatic independents.

Just for starters, consider how many Christian ministries teach that the apostle Paul made a huge "mistake" when he finally travelled to Jerusalem in order to deliver the donations that he had collected from  all the churches that he was the apostle over. He was urging that collection for the community of faith in Israel for over 3 years and he intended to deliver it by the Feast of Shavuot, or Pentecost - a prophetic marker for the salvation of the Jewish people.

Yet many Christians preach and teach that Paul made a big mistake because he was warned every step of the way by prophets that it would end up with him imprisoned in chains. (Acts 20:23) That was no mistake in judgment! That was the measure of commitment that Paul had made to the cause of his journey to Jerusalem to deliver the contributions from the churches to the community of faith in Israel. Paul was committed to a Divine purpose, and I believe he had even consecrated himself to the purpose when he took a Nazarite vow in Cenchrea (Acts 18:18) and he fulfilled his vow in Jerusalem when delivering the church contributions to the Jerusalem ministry leaders. (Acts 21:20-26)

While in Israel, still en route to Jerusalem with representatives from the giving churches, listen to what Paul told the prophets and believers in Caesarea:

"After we had been there several days, a prophet named Agabus came down from Judea. Coming over to us, he took Paul's belt, bound his own feet and hands, and said, "- The Holy Spirit says: 'In this way the Jews of Jerusalem will bind the owner of this belt and hand him over to the Gentiles.'" When we heard this, we and the people there pleaded with Paul not to go up to Jerusalem. Then Paul answered, "Why are you weeping and breaking my heart? I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die in Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus." When he would not be dissuaded, we fell silent and said, "The Lord's will be done." Acts 21:10-14 

It may be difficult to fathom, but we are seeing in Israel among many, similar high commitment, personal sacrifice and consecration in order to minister the Word of God and the life of Yeshua to Israelis. 

Every week we feature ministries in this prayer summary that are just as worthy of the support of the churches as they were in the first century when the apostle Paul carried their donations to Jerusalem to deliver to the community of faith.

I hope you see it, and if you don't, please study for yourself the things I have scripture referenced here. It has been my great honor for two decades to have seen these things from God's Word, and to act upon that knowledge to the best of my ability. I hope you will too and "Giving Tuesday" is an excellent place to start.

We are like the Christmas carol, "We Three Kings of Orient Are bearing gifts we traverse afar" to lay our gifts at the feet of the body of Messiah in Israel so that Yeshua may continue to raise up His kingdom throughout  Israel by the irreplaceable witness of local Israeli ministries and believers.  - Donna Diorio

Friday, October 20, 2017

Prophets Who Cannot See Israel in God's Plans

About half of Christianity are clueless about God's intentions for Israel in the days ahead. Many have heard about the Jews coming to faith and the body of Messiah in Israel, they know what scriptures we base our eschatology theology on, yet they reject it as of no consequence.

Many of these are from the highest profile charismatic, prophetic ministers in the world - so how can they not understand the basic faithfulness of God to return to Israel with faith? I don't honestly have an answer for that beyond what Paul warned against in Romans 11:18: arrogance.

HERE IS WHAT I BELIEVE ABOUT THAT: Many who are currently following eschatological and theological beliefs that deny and discount the place of Israel and the body of the Lord in Israel, will at some point have their blindness removed - exactly as Jews are having their blindness removed.

In fact, I believe there is a direct correlation to the restoration of spiritual sight in the blindness of the Jews to their Messiah and the blindness of Christians to God's intentions and plans toward Israel.

As we are seeing more and more Jews awaken to their Messiah, we are seeing more and more Christians awaken to God's intentions and plans toward Israel. As more Jews come to faith in Yeshua, more Christians will enter into the revelation of Israel's place in God's heart and God's faithfulness to return to the Jews with salvation in Yeshua.

I do not say, You are all going to be condemned to hell those of you Christians who can't see the significance of Israel and the Jews.

I do say, In the name of Jesus: Turn, turn, turn. 
To everything (turn, turn, turn)
There is a season (turn, turn, turn)
And a time to every purpose, under heaven

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Before the Eclipse, the Sign

Psalm 19:1-6
The heavens declare the glory of God; 
the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
Day after day they pour forth speech;  
night after night they reveal knowledge.
They have no speech, they use no words; 
no sound is heard from them.
Yet their voice goes out into all the earth, 
their words to the ends of the world.
    In the heavens God has pitched a tent for the sun.
It is like a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, 
like a champion rejoicing to run his course.
It rises at one end of the heavens and makes its circuit to the other; 
nothing is deprived of its warmth.

On August 21 a total eclipse occurred in the USA which many interpreted as a sign of God's coming judgment on America. This is the historical response of mankind to solar eclipses. The Babylonians - who were fairly accurate at predicting eclipses as early as 1375 BCE - and the ancient Chinese believed an eclipse was a bad omen for their kings. They even took steps to seat a temporary king to face the anticipated anger of 'the gods'.

There is a storied history surrounding solar eclipses, but there is also a history of major scientific breakthroughs.  Albert Einstein theorized the existence of gravitational waves more than a century ago. Last summer, a good five days before the total eclipse passed from west to east across the US, international scientists observed an astronomical  marvel that took place 130 million years ago. More than 70 labs and telescopes across the world witnessed what happened when two neutron stars locked into gravitational sync with each other, circling round and round until at last they collided and merged together as one. When that merge occurred, it released  energy that spread outward throughout the universe.

On Aug. 17, 2017 those signals reached Earth — and sparked an astronomy revolution.  Scientists  are calling this discovery so profound that it has created a new era in space research which they are calling "MultiMesseger Astrophysics".  Through spiritual eyes, NASA's video depiction of this "multi-messenger" event speaks  strongly of the power that will be released when God's plan in Yeshua is fully realized.  Jew and Gentile in Him are already locked into a 'gravitational pull' to be made one in Messiah. When we at last collide, merging as one in Him, the spiritual energy from our impact will radiate outward throughout our world in the greatest revival the world has seen. 

True science will speak not only to the existence of our Creator, but also to His plans for mankind. This is an even greater spiritual sign and message than any which have been claimed regarding the solar eclipse. God knows the end from the beginning.

Scientists speaking to the Times of Israel also noted that the colliding stars confirmed another discovery to them, "We see the gold being formed." 

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Historic: Welcoming the King of Glory Conference Jerusalem

It's a First & Your Prayers are Especially Needed to Cover What is About to Take Place! 
by Donna Diorio with Chaya Mizrachi

On October 10-13th, a significant first will take place in Jerusalem during the festivities of the Feast of Tabernacles, or Sukkot as it is known from the Biblical Fall Feasts of God. During this season it is quite usual for Israel and especially Jerusalem to be overflowing with Christians who come to celebrate the feasts at many conferences that are conducted by Christian ministries.

What makes the "Welcoming the King of Glory" conference different is that this marks the first time that the Israeli ministry leaders were asked to be both the organizer and leaders the conference that would host ministry leaders and participants from the nations. Usually these international conferences are entirely organized and lead by Christian groups, with some participation in speaking by the local Israeli ministries. 

But a group of indigenous ministry leaders including many different Pacific islanders, New Zealand and Australia including Hawaiians and First Nations of the Americas, approached the Israeli ministry leaders to do a conference in Israel - with one catch: 

They would not do the conference unless the Israeli leaders led it. They said it was time for the Israeli leaders to sit at the table as an older brother and they stated that the nations could not find their right place until the Jewish leaders from Israel stepped into their place. What a powerful breakthrough of prophetic insight!

Adonai Roi congregation (The Lord is my Shepherd kehila) and Dugit Ministries leader, Avi Mizrachi in Tel Aviv said, “This is the first time that a group of Israeli leaders are leading a gathering where we are inviting the native leaders from the far islands to come and celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles with us.”

Apparently this has been on the heart of the indigenous peoples of the nations for some time and they have been praying about it for some time. Finally they approached Avi Mizrachi with their desire and Avi called a meeting of different Israeli leaders together to hear them. Avi said,  "We heard from God to go forward." 

Afterwards, it created a desire among the Messianic leaders to meet together to worship and hear from as a group as they have never moved together before. So over the summer as the Israeli leadership met together, Asher Intrater of Revive Israel stood up and said, "Avi, you are called to lead this and we are with you." 

Mizrachi, a sabra, or native Israeli himself, sees a special significance in the indigenous ministry leaders coming to the ministry leaders of Israel in this way. It is significant that they are the first international Christians to recognize correct protocol for coming up to Jerusalem to keep the feast of Tabernacles. It is a historical first.

What do I mean by that? I mean that many come to Israel to keep the feasts and to hold conferences, but the leadership of the Israeli Messianic community of faith are not approached except as an afterthought or sometimes in last minute recognition that their involvement would enhance the gathering. This is akin to throwing a party at a neighbor's house and not seeking their blessing until all the invitations have gone out and the plans completed. 

The correct protocol has been followed in this event and it is significant too that has come about at the request of the indigenous, or first-nations peoples. They recognized that it was important when coming to Israel to come as true guests of the Jewish Messianic ministry leadership.

There are many Israeli leaders involved in the conference including Benjamin and Reuven Berger, Guy Cohen, Argo Andargachew, Gil Afriat, Tony Sperando, Michael Yaron, Eitan Shiskoff, Schmuel Birbaunm, Asher Intrater, Ariel Blumenthal, Peter Tsukahira, Eddie Santoro, Rick Ridings, Simcha David, Israel Pochtar, Avishalom Tekle, Tal Robin, Michael Yaron and Avi Mizrachi.

There will also be Arab Christian pastors and leaders who will participate in the conference to show their support for the Israeli ministry leadership and for Israel. In fact, the conference will take place in Abu Ghosh/Kiryat Ye'arim, just outside Jerusalem in the Jerusalem Hills. Abu Ghosh is an Arab-Israeli village known for warm ties to Zionism according to the Times of Israel. Kiryat Ye'arim is an ancient Israeli town that is significantly noted as village that the Ark of the Covenant was returned to after being captured by the Philistines. It was held in Kiryat Ye'arim until the Ark could be correctly taken up to Jerusalem because there was an exact protocol issued by God for conveying the Ark.

The timing of this event is also seen as particularly significant as 2017 marks a special moment on God’s calendar. It is:

   120 years since the First Zionist World Congress
   100 years since the Balfour Declaration
   70 years since the United Nations Resolution 181 calling for the partition of British Mandate  Palestine into a state for Jews and a state for Arabs
   50 years from the Six-Day War and unification of Jerusalem
   50 years of the restoration of Judea, Samaria, the Jordan Valley and the Golan Heights to Israel

Intercession for this event is requested between now and the event date just a few weeks into October.  This morning (9/26) Chaya Mizrachi noted to me an indication of the level  warfare that exists for this quite historic conference relating the history of their event location and also noticing a terror attack that occurred this very day.

Chaya explained that in 1948 the British handed the keys of the Abu Ghosh police station containing the arms to the Muktar, the head of the village. Also that the British handed  over much to the Arabs rather than to the Jews in the villages, tilting the balance of power, if you will. But in a surprising and unusual move the Muktar of Abu Ghosh turned around and gave the keys to the Palmach Hagana, the Jewish fighting force during the British Mandate. With the British rule pulling out, Abu Ghosh was taking its stand with Israel. From that strategic location, the Jews were able to watch the road to Jerusalem and protect Jewish settlements in the area.

Today, you may have heard about a terrorist attack in Har Hadar that murdered three Israeli and seriously wounded a fourth. The one the three security forces men that were murdered by the terrorist was a young man from Abu Ghosh. He was there, an Israeli Arab, protecting the Jewish community. 

As Eddie Santoro of Ahavat Yeshua congregation wrote recently, "We live in this reality every day. The battle that is raging around us is mighty on many fronts. There is every 'natural' reason for fear to raise its ugly head. But we have chosen not to look to the way of this world but to trust in God. His way is our way and His victory is our victory. We step out in faith and the wonder of God surrounds our life. We are committed to stepping out in faith also in sharing Yeshua with those we meet."

The spiritual warfare going into this historic breakthrough is great.  Also because it is already a great breakthrough that the recognition of the Pacific Islands and First Nations have followed the correct spiritual protocol to an event in Israel. We are expecting great fruit to come from this conference, and ask for many to take up the prayers of faith interceding for every detail going into the conference and covering all the participants coming and going.

We are entering into times that the spiritual enemies of our God do not want to see unfold. That is why the ministries of Israel live under strong daily pressures and also why there is an urgency to this call to intercede over this historically significant  "Welcoming the King of Glory" conference.  

Please join us in praying for this to be the first of many more to come in the correct protocol from the nations. 

To learn more about this event you can access the conference  website 
Arrows from Zion will also be posting more as we continue to receive  further updates.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

The Year is 5778

The year is 5778.
I remember many years ago I was at a conference and my friend who was putting on the conference asked me to stand on Sunday morning and told the congregation that I had an Israel Prayer letter. Then he asked me what the Jewish year was. I answered, I don't know because I don't follow that kind of stuff. Later he told me I should have given it a shot since none of the people there would have known the difference anyway. This is so true. To pursue understanding to all things Jewish from a Christian standpoint is to dive into a seemingly bottomless pit. There is no end to the 'rabbi trails' of study that we can wander around in like some elaborate maze. And of course I did exactly that in my first years of being drawn into the search for the Jews that I found missing from the faith of Jesus, the Messiah born in Nazareth. As I locked onto where God was leading me, to the believer ministries of Israel, I came to realize that although there was much richness in Jewish roots and the Hebrew language, it did not hold a candle to me realizing and pursuing what God was doing through the believers of Yeshua in the nation of Israel. That they were the key to future events and it was crucial that believers in the nation became not only aware of them, but entered into relationship with them. When the Church officially cut off the Jewish believers in 318 AD - according to Catholic historian Malachi Martin - they were a comparatively rag tag group of emissaries who went to Rome to meet with pope Silvester. Martin writes of them that "they shunned all worldly power and revolution, and were for the most part dirt-farmers and petty merchants, hugging close to their obscurity even though their first bishop was James, first cousin of Jesus." To most of the major figures in the Church, the Israeli ministries of our time also appear to be a rag tag group of emissaries "hugging close to their obscurity." In the restoration of God's mercies, expressed through His salvation of Israel to faith through the Messiah Yeshua, it is the Church in the nations who see beyond the humble nature of the Israeli ministries and believers, and in faith re-connect with them. It is a seeing through the eyes of faith, like Naaman, a commander of the Syrian army who was a leper seeking to be healed by a prophet of God in Israel. Elisha told him to dip in the Jordan River seven times to be healed. What the prophet told Naaman to do enraged him, because it was too simple, too plain - not dignified or treating him as his commanding rank surely deserved. Besides, the Jordan River was just a dirty brown river and Naaman was used to more sparkling clean river flows in Syria. This is a metaphor for the state of much of the Christian church today regarding the Israeli prophets - and all the five fold ministries. Naaman's SERVANTS had to talk sense to the great commander. They asked him essentially that if the Israeli prophet had told him something that appealed more to his own image of his personal standing, would he have followed the instruction and been healed. So, Naaman humbled himself and did as Elisha had told him to do - dip 7 times in the dirty Jordan River and be healed of his leprosy. I often see Christians who do not want to accept that God has put the Israeli ministries into a significant and unique position in these last days of the last days. Not only are they especially anointed to reach their people in Israel, but they are also anointed to be facilitators of the vision of God for one new man in Messiah Yeshua that is coming together. At this point while the Western church continues somewhat to balk at the rag tag Israeli contingent of the faith, the Far East is coming in droves to connect as family with their brothers in the faith. The faith has traveled across the world heading west and is now coming full circle back to Jerusalem - from the far east through the middle east and will finally come to Jerusalem, the City of the Great King. Time for the West to awaken to this.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Birthpangs 2017 Part 2

I have never been a big fan of the direct connect-the-dots of political incidents against Israel to catastrophic weather events. Years ago it was popularized in an extremely detailed book which was well received by our community of Messianics and Messianic supporters. Regardless of the warm welcome it got almost universally from those of us who love Israel, I did not and still do not believe it says the right thing about the God we serve.
Maybe some of you think my comment yesterday, Birthpangs 2017, was in part mocking those who believe that God is directly punishing America for recent political moves related to Israel. Maybe I was mocking - although it was sparingly I believe. The real problem is what it says about God. For the record, I don't like what it implies about God when believers connect their causal dots to abortion, homosexuality or other sins that specifically push their buttons as followers of the LORD.
As I explained, there were spiritual laws laid down in Genesis 3 that govern the whole of mankind and one of those is that the curse of sin would not entirely rest on the man and women and their descendants, but some of the curse for their sins would be absorbed into the very ground. "Cursed is the ground for your sake."
Then later on in Moses time, God gave His people something that would keep them safe in the repercussions of sin. He gave them laws - statutes and ordinances which would not bring curses on the them directly, nor into the ground on which they lived. This was so important that God told them not only were they to live by these moral laws but they were to see to it that the strangers that lived among them did the same. And why because if some did not the curse of those sins would be absorbed into the very ground beneath their feet, and when that happens, then at some point the ground will begin to "vomit" out the inhabitants. Natural disasters are that vomiting out.
This is a universal spiritual law over the whole earth like gravity is a natural law over the whole earth. It is going to happen when a land absorbs the sins of the people who inhabit it. God does not have to issue a judgment, He already did in Genesis 3.
Sometimes there are connect the dots causal curses that are unleashed on us through political actions we take. But those are different from weather events which belong to the Genesis 3 curse. The sowing and reaping law is the direct causal spiritual law that impacts us when bad political moves are taken. "When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked bears rule, the people mourn."
We are about to come upon the 16th Memorial of such an event of political sowing and reaping tomorrow, the 9/11 terror attack. Politically in 1993 the decision was made to allow Hamas to fund raise in the U.S. which meant Israel would bear an increased brunt of terror attacks. When the 9/11 terror attack occurred, the United States literally reaped what it had sown against Israel when it did not cut off Islamists within us from funding the effort against Israel.
The whole of Europe is in much worse shape than the United States on the same count of evil political moves against Israel and for Israel's Islamist enemies than we in the US are. That is because they are reaping on the same level that they sowed evil against Israel politically. This is a DIRECT cause and effect, sowing and reaping. It is also a spiritual law that is in effect that does not require God to say one word in judgment. He may stay the reaping, giving people a time to repent, but the sowing and reaping is going to happen regardless.
I grew up in a denomination that continually looked judgmentally at individuals upon whom bad things happened. I grew up thinking God was mad and mean, directly punishing us for every single time we screwed up. It has taken a lot to transform that view of God in my heart. Maybe that is why it bothers me so much to hear believers say God is punishing us when a major natural disaster strikes. The world is literally in our hands, it operates under God's laws, but we are the ones on the ground that are releasing what happens either through our obedience or our disobedience to His laws governing this earth.
In times like the current weather events in the USA, it seems to me that we are to be representing God as the way to safety, refuge, peace and compassion. I don't know about you, but when I returned to the God of my childhood, I was in dire straits. I was looking for help, not an explanation that God was hacked off at me and that was why I was in such a pickle.
Anyway, a few clarifying thoughts this morning.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Birthpangs 2017

We have a higher calling than to debate our connect-the-dots of why the world is experiencing so many great natural disasters at this time - and make no mistake about it: It is not just the USA experiencing these things. In the United States we are awash with prophetic speculations as to the cause of so many powerful hurricanes hitting the nation. Prophetic words on this are a dime a dozen. 
That is why I find it a pointless exercise for believers to focus on trying to pin all the current natural disasters on some specific evils, sins and opposition to God's plans committed by the US which God is taking vengeance on. It is not like God has looked down and said, 'That's it, I've had it! Release the Krackin!'
I do not believe in this explanation of things. Nor do I believe that these storms are purely generated by demonic activity that we believers have complete control over if we will just arise and speak to the storm. We have spiritual authority to use over the storms, but it is not complete because there is a reason why the storms are happening, and it is definitely evils, sins and opposition to God's plans.
There is some truth in both positions that we are seeing the people of God take in the face of these natural disasters, but to focus on putting our finger on single sin issues as the cause, or thinking that we are just dealing with demonic activity in stirring up the natural disasters is not looking at it with a big picture view.
As someone quoted the other day, "For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed" Ro 8:19 and 22 "the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time"
So we are seeing the whole creation groaning in these disasters. They are groaning to see the children of God being revealed.
When did creation begin to groan? Genesis 3:17 "cursed the ground for your sake". How does that manifest? Lev 18:24-29 explains that the ground is defiled by the sins of the inhabitants. That is why God gave HIS PEOPLE (we're that right?) statutes and ordinances that if His people would follow, it would keep them from defiling the ground beneath them.
And why is that important, because further explained that when the ground beneath us becomes so defiled it will begin to "vomit" out the inhabitants. Have you ever eaten anything that was spoiled and your body reacted to it with violent vomiting out of the bad? The land beneath us does the same, and it is part of the groaning we read about in Romans 8. Don't spiritualize that groaning because it is physical and we are experiencing it right now in natural disasters.
So the earth is groaning and it is groaning as in the pains of childbirth. What child is going to be brought forth? the children (sons) of God will be birthed out of the natural disasters. Selah.
The groaning of the land - natural disasters are occurring because the land beneath is so defiled by sin - violations of God's moral and ethical laws. Now many Christians reject this thought out of hand saying the Law has passed away, but how can God's morality pass away? And if that is so why do you say these hurricanes are because of abortions or homosexuality? Well yes, both of those are violations of God's morality and both of those defile the land in which we live and do play a part in how the land is trying to vomit us out. But that is not the whole story.
Our main focus is not in condemning the world, but in pointing the way to LIFE. These birthpangs are meant to bring ~us~ the sons of God, forth, snatching the sinners from the fire, or the floods, or the earthquakes. This is not primarily a time to cry out judgment, but to cry out, Over here! Here is where you can find safety and refuge from the storms. Here is where you will find peace in the midst of the storm. Here is where your needs will be met when you have nothing left. Here is where you will find compassion and hope.
Oh, yes, we are to speak to the storms, the fires, the quakes to be tempered by the mercies of God, but we are not going to make it all go away by exercising Christian spiritual macho over the storms. There are some things that cannot be reversed. We are to focus on the people in the midst of those storms, taking the opportunity of devastation to show them Jesus. When we do this, the sons of God will be birthed for the increasing spiritual battles ahead.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Timing versus Conditions

Right now I am staring at a picture in my Facebook news feed of Masai women in Tanzania in their traditional clothing and ornaments. It is the picture graphic of a short article by 
Cody Archer of Revive Israel on how it is not the many signs of the end times that matter, but rather it is the existing CONDITIONS that are the key to the days just before Yeshua returns.
What conditions? These two: 1. A significant Remnant of His believers in Jerusalem and 2. the Good News having reached every people group on the planet.
I am struck by this because last night I listened to the US President laying out how they planned to proceed in Afghanistan and Pakistan. What he was emphasizing in his speech about the military strategy that would guide what the US does next is that he intends to measure success by the conditions that exist, not by arbitrary timing restraints.
Now people are more pleased by arbitrary timing deadlines. They like to know that on such-and-such a date thus-and-so is going to happen. That is true in the political realm and it is equally true in the spiritual realm. That is why in terms of last days prophecies we have seen sooooooo many date setters.
They based their dates on the signs of the times that they determined proved we had to be on the doorstep of the second coming. Many of their arguments are compelling cases but can I tell you that a compelling case can be made using scripture for just about anything and many cases of totally erroneous theories or doctrines have been made over the history of the Bible.
Timing can be interpreted but conditions cannot.
When the US pulled out of Iraq based on timing rather than on conditions, the mission there was sacrificed to please the people. It gave us the rise of ISIS and we have paid dearly for not remaining in place until the favorable CONDITIONS existed.
Many of you may be thinking right now, There she goes again being more political than spiritual.
You may not think much about it but truth is, Yeshua is the Commander of the Armies of Heaven. We are in a battle for the souls on the earth, and do not think that He has some arbitrary time frame guiding His command of what happens next. No: He is in the battle until the favorable conditions exist.
There is not going to be a 'pull out' of His troops on the earth until the two conditions He is looking for exist. Those conditions are Matthew 23:37-39 and Matthew 24:14 - a significant number of believers in Jerusalem are welcoming Him to return as KING and all of the people groups of the earth have had the opportunity to receive Him as LORD.
All the other signs of the times are "not yet".
As Matthew 24:6 reveals: And you shall hear of wars and rumors of wars: see that you be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.

My Prophetic Scrapbook

Today I was emailing with a good friend. We were talking about Christian prophecy teachers and it reminded me of something I haven't thought about in a long time. Thought it was worth sharing here: I got deep into a study of end times prophecies myself in the late 1980's. I had one of those huge photo scrapbooks that the pages were sticky and had an overlay of vinyl on top so you could re-position things easily. What I did was take photocopies of all the prophetic scriptures in my Bible and I would cross reference the specific mentions of the same thing, like say in Revelation it would talk about X and then in Daniel it would also talk about X. I would cut out those passages and position them next to each other in the scrapbook. Then I could see what else Revelation was saying in the passage and what else Daniel was saying. Some words, imagery or terms had several mentions in the Bible and would I add them all on the same page of the scrapbook to try to see a bigger picture of what X was all about. It became a massive scrapbook - you would not believe how many of the prophecies cross-reference by special words, or imagery and terms! Also, I looked at which prophecies had already been fulfilled in history, and I noticed that some prophecies that had already been fulfilled could also be fulfilled in the last day. I had an encyclopedia of ancient history and could literally follow the nations that were spoken of symbolically in history. It was such a deep dive into prophecy done over maybe the space of a year that it became mind-boggling to me. The more I cross-referenced, the more I found that was cross-reference-able! Soon I could not get all the passages of scripture on one scrapbook page and had to start going with putting them on 2 facing pages....then it spilled over into needing 3 pages. I stepped back from it at that point because it was too mind-boggling. I didn't realize it then, but the point I should have taken from the experience is that the New Testament and the Old Testament are never to be read one without the other. I have long believed that but did not realize until just now how God showed me the deep truth of that in my prophecy scrapbook period. When I stepped away from it, I decided that whatever God was going to do, it would be enough if I could recognize it when He was doing it. Right after that period is when I discovered the Messianic Jews. It was like God was answering the desire of my heart to recognize when the times came upon us, because there is no greater prophetic indicator of the last days than the rise of Messianic Jews, and especially those in Israel. They are the key sign bar none. Many people have a hard time really believing that the Jews are going to come to faith in epic numbers. I have seen that throughout my walk since 1982. They ARE going to believe - that is exactly why God raised up the Messianic Jewish movement. They are the witnesses in Israel to other Israelis. Yes, we should help Israel as Christians BUT we should be aligned in our helping with the Israeli Messianic community. Full Stop. Honestly, there are too many Christians in Israel (or coming in and out) that will not have anything to do with the Messianic believers there because they don't want to hurt their relationship with Israelis who believe in Jesus. That is the most negative message a Christian can send to an unsaved Jew! Because Israeli unsaved Jews will accept the help and support of Christians with the understanding that 'your religion is your religion and our religion is our religion and you have no right to try to convince us that your religion should be ours.' That is the understanding that most Christian ministries who are in Israel or who work with the Israelis in immigration, humanitarian, etc. have to abide by. So the only witness to Israelis is through the Messianic Jews - and that's okay, that's what God intends. But the Christian ministries that keep their distance from Israeli believers - personally I believe they are all going to be kicked out of Israel at some point and that is going to make them mad, like Luther got when he defended the Jews and then became furious because they didn't respond to his kindness by accepting faith. Never mind that it was not the time God had for Jews to come to faith, nor was Luther to be the witness to bring them. I believe in helping Israel in all the ways the Christians are helping Israel - only I believe unless they are aligned with the Messianic Jewish believers in Israel, in relationship and in helping Israel as an honest expression of Christian faith, then it is a wasted deposit of seed that will not bear the fruit (or VERY little fruit in comparison). Not acknowledging the place of spiritual authority that God has placed in the Israeli Messianic Jews for their own country is exactly the kind of arrogance against the Jews that Paul talked about in Romans. There is always order and chain of command in the kingdom of God - including related to Christians going into Israel apart from relationship with the Lord's body in Israel. Why is that? Because there is also an anointing as was indicated in the first generation of apostolic leadership, Galatians 2:8: "For God, who was at work in Peter as an apostle to the circumcised, was also at work in me as an apostle to the Gentiles." It is a classic mistake of Christians who want to be a part of what God is doing in the salvation of all Israel to ignore this spiritual chain of command as if it could not matter in the least. The time is right for this understanding to break forth as we work in right order toward the salvation of "all Israel".

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Do not embitter your children

When we think of bitterness forming in a person, generally we think of it in adults. Truth is childhood is often the place where bitterness begins to form and grow, so by the time the child has reached adulthood that is when the bitterness has become a major issue in the life of an adult. 

If you are a person of faith, make sure that your children understand the ultimate consequences of bitterness, and that you do all in your power to clear up bitterness before it hardens in their hearts.

As Colossians 3:21 advises, Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged. That word, discouraged is athyméo and it means to be disheartened, dispirited, broken in spirit. Once this happens, bitterness can form in the place of those open wounds.

I know this to be true because I was one who developed bitterness as a child over a parent with mental illness. My parent also had developed bitterness as a child and by the time it had become full grown in her, mental illness took over.

The Scripture says that the root of bitterness defiles many. That is because we are not islands. The bitterness developing in our lives not only limits or destroys our capacity to love ourselves and others in our lives, it also defiles the others who are around us. Those we are embittered against and those we are so sure we will do better to than was done to us.

Life is messy. Especially lives that are not devoted to the Lord and to becoming like Him. So many of us have traveled through many years of our lives before finding the Lord which means we have traveled many years stumbling and blundering along...perhaps making people bitter against us along the way and not having any inkling how to deal with it.

It is quite a shock to the system to suddenly see how our own mistakes of the past have led to great bitterness in others - a bitterness that to this day is a spoiler of relationships for that person. We are rarely in it alone, and truth be known, every person ultimately has to own their own bitterness. No one made them choose bitterness, we just do.

Fortunately, whom the Son sets free is free indeed. There is a way out of bitterness for every single person and it is not dependent upon what anyone else involved does or does not do. It is forgive. Not just a one time forgiveness, but a dedication to walking in forgiveness for the rest of your life.

Regardless of how easy it might be just to renew our bitter feelings, we can CHOOSE to forgive and keep walking in it towards those who are bitter. And we can pray that God will give them grace to recover themselves from this most powerful trap of the enemy used to destroy those who hold onto their bitterness.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Guest Post: Arni Klein of Emmaus Way in Israel 7/18/2017

Arni Klein
of Emmaus Way

As some of you know, last month a delegation of five from our congregation in Tiberias were ten days in the Far East taking part in six days of worship on a 19-story cruise ship along with 3000 believers and a crew of 2000. It was an unprecedented complex experience with ramifications at personal, corporate and global levels. Shortly before the trip began, I was reminded of how deeply the world was impacted by what took place in that region fifty years earlier and was impressed that this company of worshipers had been called and commissioned by the Lord to do something in the spirit realm designed to have a significant and far-reaching effect.

People’s perceptions and beliefs about the Vietnam War varied from one end of the spectrum to the other.  Many were convinced that our involvement was wrong and immoral.  Others believed it was a righteous cause justifying the high price paid in human lives.  There are many stories of how individual lives were saved by the US involvement in the region.  It is not our intention here to take a position on the motives, methods or morals of those making the decisions, or the ultimate effect it had on those directly involved in the conflict.  Regardless of the truths about underlying elements and individual ramifications, the war divided the US like no other single event of our day. The civil rights struggle, the exposed corruption in the government, and the string of high-level assassinations were all factors that also affected the spiritual atmosphere of the nation.  But none polarized and mobilized the population, as did the war in Vietnam.

The resultant societal breakdown was a primary factor in opening the way for a spiritual revolution that brought a mass of young people into the Kingdom of God.  Alongside the positive aspects of the spiritual awakening, many ungodly spiritual forces found expression that caused or enabled a generation to set aside long-accepted Biblical principles and beliefs.  ...

The sheer magnitude of the cruise, the likes of which has probably never taken place anywhere on the open seas, and surely not in the place we were, is something not to be considered lightly.  To coordinate something like this out of purely human desire, not to mention getting visas for some 1700 Mainland Chinese, would be unlikely if not practically impossible.  There were some challenges and difficulties along the way, but we can testify that the Presence of God manifest throughout the entire journey took us to places where words and sounds and any manner of human expression fell short of being able to adequately respond to His beauty and glory. In the light of it all, we are constrained to believe that something of global significance took place.  ...  For two weeks I was unable to connect with daily life or focus on anything except to mull over the cruise.  I was aware that my spirit was reaching out to lay hold of what this was from God’s perspective.  I had no choice but to be still.  My time was not my own.

Some days into this waiting period, a friend forwarded me a word delivered by someone known as a prophet spoken over a particular nation.  The word declared that over the next three years God was going to pour out untold blessings and wonders over this people, and that they would become the very platform for worldwide revival.  In all that was related, there was nothing about the people needing to do anything. There was no call to repentance, change, or any manner of preparation.  As the “prophecy” stood, it was solely a matter of God deciding that on a certain date, by a sovereign act, for no apparent outward reason, heaven was going to open.  It left me feeling grieved in the spirit. 

Words such as these have become normal and common within the Charismatic body, at least in the West.  Remembering back forty years, in the movement’s early days, it was not so.  But as time progressed, the focus on self, our identity, our calling, our portion, our anointing, our authority, etc. etc. grew and grew to where the person of God effectively ceased to be the central focus of the life of the Church.  Rather it was about what He does and will do…in particular for us.  As these thoughts ran though my mind, the spiritual fog that had engulfed me began to lift.

I got an email in response to a question I posed to someone about where they stood concerning the revelation they received about the central place of Israel in God’s heart and global strategic plan.  The lack of visible response was in stark contrast to the dramatic way God had spoken to them of their need to wake up to Israel.  A line from the mail jumped off the page.  It read, “I can't speak up in un-lived truth but will always speak up as prompted and led by Him.” 

The words un-lived truth...were the key to unlock the understanding my spirit was reaching for.  The scriptural discussion of faith and works immediately came to mind.  As faith without works is dead, so truth un-lived is dead. ... How does God view our seeing and knowing something as truth that is not part of our life that does not produce in us a contending…a pressing in…a battling through into full light?  ....There is no middle ground.  The existence of a sit-upon-fence is an illusion…or moreover, a deception.  To hear His voice and not respond immediately is to harden our heart and reject Him who is the living Word.  To lightly esteem what God values brings a bitter curse.  (See the literal Hebrew for Genesis 12:3)....Regardless of where we think we are and what we think we know, to not take into our heart what we recognize as God’s very truth is to reject it.  Actually, we are not rejecting an “it”.  It’s Him, Yeshua…the Truth… we are turning from. 
For some 25 years, we have traveled to the nations speaking about Israel.  Out of multiplied hundreds of meetings, we can recall only one where there was an outright rejection of the word we brought.  In well over half there was a clear acknowledgment of the message as truth.  However, in most of these situations, we have seen little if any follow-up to what was revealed.  

How can followers of the Lord not feel the need to battle and struggle until our hearts beat in sync with what our minds know to be true?  How can we know Him and love Him and not be moved by what moves Him? 
Perhaps the answer partly lies in the fact that the modern Western Church has generally grown up without understanding the fear of the Lord.  We emphasize that God is love and proclaim His grace, but somehow miss the fact that in the very chapter (Heb.12) that follows the great discourse on faith and of our coming to Mount Zion we are sternly warned, “See that you do not refuse Him who speaks” (vs.25). The chapter ends with…“our God is a consuming fire.”  
We would suggest that to understand the true nature of un-lived truth and how this unacceptable denial of life has gone virtually unnoticed will have a revolutionary effect on the Body of Messiah.  Most professing born-again believers have read the Scriptures and consequently know what is written about the significance of Israel, yet seemingly remain as yet unmoved.   Though this dynamic of non-response to truth extends beyond things concerning Israel, the place of Israel, both in Scripture and the daily news, makes it something of a universal “acid test”. 
Let’s connect a few dots to hopefully get the fullness of this picture.

Un-lived truth is un-loved truth.  In 2 Thess.2:9-10 we are told that to whomever does not receive the love of the truth, God will send a strong delusion, that they will believe a lie and perish.  It does not get more serious than this.  God asks, “Will you walk with me?  Will you go where I go?  Will you love what I love?”  He opens our eyes.  He shows us His heart.  We see how Israel is the key to His plan.  Will we cling to what is true?  Will we press in to lay hold of that for which we have been laid hold of?  Will we change our direction?  Will we change our thinking?  Will we align ourselves with His heart?  Will we cry out for Him to quicken us to be passionate for what He loves?  Will we wrestle in the spirit until His truth is alive in us?  Can the love of the truth be anything but a consuming fire?  This question hearkens back to the prophecy over a nation to which I referred earlier in this letter. 

We mark as a trend that began in the late 1960’s with the Charismatic movement, that personal experience became a primary measure of spiritual reality. Individuals with unique and dramatic gifts came to the foreground and were lifted up.  Ministry after ministry was named after the “anointed person of God”.  As the issue of gifts became more central, believers looked to people and spiritual experiences for motivation.  This has produced a spiritually-weak, emotionally-driven, blessing-oriented, man-centered church that is able to abide with un-lived truth.  The water has been slowly heating for fifty years.  Our frog is now quite cooked. 

The understanding to which we have come concerning the place of the worship cruise is that the Lord sent 3000 people to release His Presence in a region out of which came a literal revolution.  It awoke a whole generation to jump out of the pot.  (The fact that most climbed back in is another matter).  It may seem somewhat remote and subjective, but given all what we have experienced before, during, and after, we are constrained to present our sense that something has been released that will have a global effect.

When we arrived in Danang Harbor in Vietnam, which had been a main landing point for the US troops, something dramatic happened. The Israeli team was ministering in the main hall with about 1000 worshipers present.  The Spirit of the Lord brought us to nearly complete silence for about 30 minutes.  Not a small thing!  As far as we know, that was the only time anything like that happened during the cruise.  There was no doubt that God was doing something of significance in that place in that moment.  It felt like a repeat of a history -- that somehow something was released into the spirit realm destined to shift the focus and course of the present-day Church. 

This long awaited radical breakthrough is connected to an intimacy with the Lord beyond what we have corporately known to date.  In the Song of Solomon, there is a moment when the bridegroom comes calling and the bride is not immediately moved to respond. After what seems like a brief moment’s hesitation, she gets up only to find that her lover is already gone. Running out to look for Him she gets beaten in the streets. What a picture.  Are we ready to grasp this result of a mere momentary hesitation?  Is God really that sensitive?  The word of God is a two-edged sword.  On the one hand, while taking those living in truth deeper into God, it simultaneously releases a spirit of deception upon those who have not valued what they’ve been given.

Here then is a short-form attempt to connect the three dots that brought me out of my two-week fog.  The worship cruise was about a global spiritual release unto a radical shift.  The “God-is-going-to” prophecy highlighted the Cross-less bless-me “gospel” that has enveloped the Body in a lethal passivity.  The lack of conviction and discomfort in the face of perceived un-lived truth is a sign that the great deception has already begun. As a not-so-side note, following the election of Donald Trump a spirit of rebellion and division has manifested in the US, polarizing the nation in a way we have not seen since the days of the war in Vietnam.

If we have understood this moment correctly, to put it rather directly, those who do not contend for God’s passion for Israel will be consumed in the not-so-slowly-warming pot.  As it is written…they will believe a lie and perish.  To live as one out of time is to be established in eternal truth.