The sixth poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up to prepare the way for the kings from the east. Then I saw three unclean spirits like frogs coming from the dragon’s mouth, from the beast’s mouth, and from the mouth of the false prophet. For they are spirits of demons performing signs, who travel to the kings of the whole world to assemble them for the battle of the great day of God, the Almighty.
“Look, I am coming like a thief. The one who is alert and remains clothed so that he may not go around naked and people see his shame is blessed.”
So they assembled them at the place called in Hebrew, Armageddon. (Revelation 16:12-16)
The US, China trade fierce rebukes at first encounter since Biden took office / DEBKAfile, March 19, 2021
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken voiced deep concerns with actions by China “including genocide against Uighur Muslims, at the opening of a three-day session in Anchorage, Alaska on Thursday. He said there would be dialogue on “Hong Kong, Taiwan and cyberattacks on the US, economic coercion of our allies.” The Chinese Communist Party’s top diplomacy official Yang Jiechi and Foreign Minister Wang Yi, hit back: “China is firmly opposed to US interference in China’s internal affairs. We have expressed our staunch opposition to such interference, and we will take firm actions in response,” Yang warned. He accused the US of “inciting countries to attack China.”
Top general threatens Iran could ‘blow up’ Israel as rhetoric escalate / Al-Monitor, March 16, 2021
The chief of general staff of Iran’s armed forces, Maj. Gen. Mohammad Bagheri, issued a fresh warning March 16 against Israel.
“Iran has acquired what it takes to blow up the Zionist regime,” Bagheri said. He said the potential “removal of the child-killing, malicious, fake regime from the political geography of the region is no illusion, but rather a genuine power that Iranian forces have gained with resolve and faith.”
The statement was in apparent response a strong threat earlier this month by Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz, who told Fox News that his country was updating plans to strike Iran’s nuclear facilities. “We must stand independently and we must defend ourselves by ourselves,” Gantz warned, saying this would be the case if the world is unable to curb the Iranian nuclear program, which Israel has long considered as the top existential threat to its security.
In a 2013 speech, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei warned in response to Israeli threats of military strikes that the Israeli cities of Haifa and Tel Aviv would be razed. “The same command has turned into a project and will be put into operation,” Defense Minister Amir Hatami said March 7.
Moscow-Washington ties in ‘crisis’: Russia recalls US envoy / Al Jazeera, March 18, 2021
Russia on Wednesday said it would recall its ambassador to the United States for consultations, the latest sign of growing tensions between Moscow and Washington.
The move to bring Anatoly Antonov to Moscow was announced shortly after US President Joe Biden accused his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin of being a “killer”, and warned he would “pay a price” for alleged election meddling.
Biden’s comments came as a declassified US intelligence report linked Putin to influence operations aimed at helping Donald Trump in last November’s presidential election.
Russia denies the longstanding allegations of meddling as baseless.
The Russian embassy in Washington said in a statement that Antonov will leave the US on Saturday and would discuss “ways to rectify Russia-US ties, which are in crisis” upon his arrival in Moscow.
It added that “certain ill-considered statements of high-ranking US officials have put the already excessively confrontational relations under the threat of collapse”.
A critical End Times sign pointing to the apocalypse is a war between worldviews, that will bring about World War 3. At the end of the Tribulation, the war of worldviews reaches a climax, known as “Armageddon.”
A worldview is the fundamental orientation of a society’s knowledge and point of view. Worldviews include religion, natural philosophy, values, emotions, and ethics.
In this message, we explore 3 main worldviews – religion, reason, and Christianity:
Most of the world’s population follows a religion as part of their worldview. The 3 largest religions are:
Islam: with about 1.91 billion members worldwide believers of Islam are referred to as Muslims. While Islam is very popular in the Middle East one does not need to be Arabic to be Muslim. The largest Muslim nation is actually Indonesia. Followers of Islam believe that there is only one God (Allah) and Mohamed is his last messenger. There are two primary sects of Islam, Sunni, and Shia. Almost all of Iran’s 82,000,000 people are Muslim, with 90% of those being Shia.
Hinduism: There are about 1.16 billion Hindus in the world. It is one of the oldest religions and is practiced mostly in India and southeast Asia. Some consider Hinduism to be a religion while others view it as a spiritual practice or way of life. A prominent belief in Hinduism is the belief in Purusartha or the “object of human pursuit.” The four Purusartha’s are dharma (righteousness), Artha (prosperity), kama (love), and moksa (liberation).
Buddism: Has about 507 million followers worldwide. Like Hinduism, Buddhism is another religion that can also be a spiritual practice. It also originates from India. Buddism shares the Hindu belief in dharma. There are three branches of Buddism: Theravada, Mahayana, and Vajrayana. Many Buddist seeks enlightenment or liberation from suffering.
Most religion, theistic or otherwise, is man-centered. Any relationship with God is based on man’s works. Atheistic religion, such as Judaism or Islam, holds to the belief in a supreme God or gods; while non-theistic religions, such as Buddhism and Hinduism, focus on metaphysical thought patterns and spiritual “energies.” But most religions are similar in that they are built upon the concept that man can reach a higher power or state of being through his own efforts. In most religions, man is the aggressor and the deity is the beneficiary of man’s efforts, sacrifices, or good deeds. Paradise, nirvana, or some higher state of being is man’s reward for his strict adherence to whatever tenets that religion prescribes.
The spirit of the antichrist is the spirit that operates through every antichrist. Antichrist does not deny the existence of God. In fact, he claims to be God’s representative. What he does deny is the relationship of the Father and the Son within the Godhead. The main manifestation of the spirit of the antichrist is Islam, the religion of Mohammed.
Islam emerged in the seventh century in what is today Saudi Arabia. The traditional account maintains that God revealed his will to Muhammad (AD 570?–632) in a series of revelations dictated by the angel Gabriel over roughly 20 years. These revelations, codified and put into writing after Muhammad’s death, compose the Quran, accepted by Muslims as the Word of God. The Quran is said to be God’s definitive revelation, the culmination of earlier revelations to numerous prophets, including Jews and Christians (called “People of the Book” in the Quran). Muhammad is said to be the last and greatest of the prophets.
Is Allah of Islam the same as Yahweh of Christianity?
Christians believe Jesus is God, but the Quran is so opposed to this belief that it condemns Jesus’ worshipers to Hell (5.72).
According to Jesus, God is our Father, yet the Quran very specifically denies that Allah is a father (112.1-4). In fact, in 5.18, the Quran tells Muslims to rebuke Jews and Christians for calling God their loving Father because humans are just things that God has created.
Islam roundly condemns the worship of the Trinity (5.73), establishing, in contrast, its own core principle: Tawhid, the absolute oneness of God. Tawhid specifically denies the Trinity, so much so that it is safe to say the doctrine of God in Christianity is antithetical to the doctrine of God in Islam.
The Quran contains over 100 passages that call Muslims to take up arms against unbelievers in the name of Allah:
“Kill them [unbelievers] wherever you find them… And fight them until there is no more unbelief and worship is for Allah alone” (Quran 2:191-193).
“Strike off their heads and strike from them every fingertip” (Quran 8:12).
“Allah has purchased from the believers their lives and their properties; in exchange for that they will have Paradise. They fight in the cause of Allah, so they slay and are slain” (Quran 9:111).
“Truly Allah loves those who fight in His cause in battle array…” (Quran 61:4)
“The Messenger of Allah said: I have been commanded to fight against people till they testify that there is no god but Allah, and that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah” (Sahih Muslim 1:33).
In the famous mosque in Jerusalem that is called the Dome of the Rock—built on the site of what was the Temple of Solomon at one time—the Arabic inscriptions around it twice say, “God has no need of a son.”
About 1.19 billion consider themselves to be non-religious or atheist – not believing in any form of Higher being. An essential part of secular humanism is a continually adapting search for truth, primarily through science and philosophy. The percentage of the Chinese population that are strict adherents to Atheism runs to about 61%. During the long era of the Soviet Union, atheism was a widespread practice.
Some philosophers contemplate the enormity of space and the depth of infinite time, and reject any sense of meaning or reason for an individual life:
If God, as the supra-sensory ground and goal, of all reality, is dead; if the supra-sensory world of the Ideas has suffered the loss of its obligatory, and above it, its vitalizing and up-building power, then nothing more remains to which Man can cling, and by which he can orient himself. That is why there stands this question: Are we not straying as through an infinite nothing? Martin Heidegger, Being and Time, 1927
The nihilist’s life-negating values answer the question of “What is the meaning of life?” by stating that life has no reason for being. They believe the Universe is cold and indifferent.
The nihilist can use axioms and symbolic logic to “prove” their case:
In logical nihilism, this means “given any proposition, it is neither a true or false proposition.”
Whither are we moving? Away from all suns? Are we not plunging continually? Backward, sideward, forward, in all directions? Is there still any up or down? Are we not straying, as through an infinite nothing? Do we not feel the breath of empty space? Has it not become colder? Friedrich Nietzsche, The Parable of the Madman, 1882
Religious humanists regard the universe as self-existing and not created, and that man is a part of nature and that he has emerged as a result of a continuous process. They believe that best we can do is live with dignity in the face of nothingness, living with “secular saintliness” against the world’s indifference.
Humanism starts with the belief that there is no god; humanists believe in situation ethics, euthanasia, and the right to suicide; and the primary goal of humanism is the establishment of a one-world government.
For almost 6,000 years, most of humanity knew almost nothing about how things really worked. The invention of clear glass in the 13th century paved the way for the development of the lens. Glass lenses inspired the creation of two of the most important scientific inventions of the 16th century – the telescope and the microscope.
In 1543, the Scientific Revolution marked the emergence of modern science, when developments in mathematics, physics, astronomy, biology, and chemistry transformed the views of society about nature.
The invention of clear glass in the 13th century paved the way for the development of the lens. Glass lenses inspired the creation of two of the most important scientific inventions of the 16th century – the telescope and the microscope. They demonstrated that ordinary observers could see things that the Greek philosophers had not dreamed of. The telescope and the microscope helped prove that we do live in a clockwork universe, driven by natural law.
Using the telescope, we now know there are around 1 septillion (10^24) stars in the universe. This calculation assumes there are around 10 trillion galaxies in the universe, multiplied by the Milky Way’s estimated 100 billion stars.
Science has been able to derive the vast bulk of phenomena in the universe from first principles. The laws can be described mathematically.
The greatest discovery in science was the verification that all matter is composed of atoms, first proposed in 1803 by English chemist John Dalton. All disciplines of science are derived from that fact. The second greatest theory came in 1905 when Einstein published general relativity, showing that the presence of mass and energy “curves” space-time, and this curvature affects the path of free particles (and even the path of light).
Almost everything in the universe can be explained in terms of fundamental laws like Einstein’s theory of gravity or the laws of quantum mechanics.
In physics, there is a deep symmetry that unifies electricity and magnetism…
On a microscopic level, new life forms were discovered and the germ theory of disease was born.
The Cell Theory emerged from early work with microscopes. The notion that all living things are composed of cells, that cells are the units of structure and function of living things, and that cells arise from pre-existing cells were all-powerful ideas.
The molecule now known as DNA was first identified in the 1860s by a Swiss chemist called Johann Friedrich Miescher, who called it nuclein. In 1881 Albrecht identified nuclein as a nucleic acid and provided its present chemical name, deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). It was by following the work of the pioneers before them that James and Francis were able to come to their ground-breaking conclusion about the structure of DNA in 1953.
Watson and Crick themselves felt that the double helix was so simple, so beautiful (it’s sometimes described as the “Mona Lisa” of science), that it had to be right, while its enigmatic symmetry made a powerful prediction about how genetic information is stored and transmitted from one generation to the next.
Even in life itself, scientists confirmed the truth of a clockwork universe. Like a recipe book, DNA holds the instructions for making an organism. Biology follows the cosmic laws of physics.
The proteins that this process makes are the “Lego’s of life” that form most of the cell body.
The 19th-century English naturalist Charles Darwin argued that organisms come about by evolution, and he provided a scientific explanation, essentially correct but incomplete, of how evolution occurs and why it is that organisms have features—such as wings, eyes, and kidneys—clearly structured to serve specific functions. Natural selection was the fundamental concept in his explanation. Natural selection occurs because individuals having more-useful traits, such as more-acute vision or swifter legs, survive better and produce more progeny than individuals with less-favorable traits. Genetics, a science born in the 20th century, reveals in detail how natural selection works and led to the development of the modern theory of evolution. Beginning in the 1960s, a related scientific discipline, molecular biology, enormously advanced knowledge of biological evolution and made it possible to investigate detailed problems that had seemed completely out of reach only a short time previously—for example, how similar the genes of humans and chimpanzees might be (they differ in about 1–2 percent of the units that make up the genes).
‘The Evolution of Everything,’ by Matt Ridley / The New York Times, Nov. 25, 2015
On the face of it, the disappearance of grisly totems of justice, the suspiciously coincidental patent filings and the inexorable rise in living standards in the face of organized disaster and depravity seem to have little to connect them. But Matt Ridley, the author of several well-regarded books on genetics and evolution, would argue that they are all of a piece — that each is the result of unplanned and undirected behavior unfolding over time. The word for this is “emergent,” and with “The Evolution of Everything” Ridley has set out to construct a sort of grand unified theory of emergent behavior.
Citing the British innovation theorist Richard Webb, he calls Darwin’s thesis the “special theory of evolution,” as opposed to a general theory that goes beyond biology “to society, money, technology, language, law, culture, music, violence, history, education, politics, God, morality.” In his previous book, “The Rational Optimist,” Ridley took on doomsayers with the argument that things are getting better, thanks largely to market economies and other actions that take place without the benefit of central planning. Here he assails “creationism” in all its forms.
In the course of the book’s 16 chapters, which deal with the evolution of everything from the internet to leadership, Ridley repeats this mantra many times: Darwin’s mechanism of selective survival resulting in cumulative complexity applies to human culture in all its aspects, too. Our habits and institutions, from language to cities, are constantly changing, and the mechanism of change turns out to be surprisingly Darwinian: it is gradual, undirected, mutational, inexorable, combinatorial, selective and “in some sense vaguely progressive”.
Government, religion, the Internet — all are spontaneous and evolutionary in Ridley’s view, the laws of Moses notwithstanding.
Many Americans believe that the United States is the most progressive culture and that all cultures should and will “evolve” to be more like them. The world’s cultures are still divided into three evolutionary stages: a “first” world, or developed countries; a “second” world of developing countries; and a “third” world of undeveloped countries. It is assumed that both the “third” and the “second” world will eventually “evolve” into developed, industrial, capitalistic, democratic cultures similar to those already in the “first” world. Meanwhile, the goal of developed countries should be to help less developed countries become more like us–whether they want to or not. This is the modern version of cultural evolutionism. So while cultural evolutionism is no longer an acceptable paradigm in anthropology, it is alive and well as part of the American worldview.
Christianity: with about 2.38 billion members, Christians make up 33 percent of the global population. The religion arose from Judaism in the first century. Its followers believe Jesus Christ was the son of God and the Messiah foretold of in the Old Testament. There are three major sects of Christianity: Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, and Protestantism.
But, true Christianity is not a religion; it is a relationship that God has established with His children. In Christianity, God is the savior and man is the beneficiary. The Bible states clearly that there is nothing man can do to make himself right with God. According to Christianity, God did for us what we cannot do for ourselves. Our sin separates us from His presence, and sin must be punished. But, because God loves us, He took our punishment upon Himself. All we must do is accept God’s gift of salvation through faith.
Grace is God’s blessing on the undeserving. God’s plan is outlined in the Holy Bible.
The Bible consists of two parts: the Old Testament and the New Testament.
The Old Testament is an account of a nation: Israel.
The New Testament is an account of a man: Jesus, God’s Son.
The nation was founded and nurtured by God to bring the man into the world. In Jesus, God Himself became a man to provide the means for the redemption of mankind. Jesus also gives humanity a concrete, definite, tangible idea of what kind of person to think of when we think of God: God is like Jesus. Jesus was God incarnate, God in human form.
His appearance on the earth is the central event of all history: the Old Testament sets the stage for it; the New Testament describes it.
Jesus the Christ (the Messiah) lived the most memorable, beautiful life ever known. He was born of a virgin and led a sinless life. As a man, Jesus was the kindest, tenderest, gentlest, most patient, most sympathetic man who ever lived. He loved people. He hated to see people in trouble. He loved to forgive. He loved to help. He did marvelous miracles to feed hungry people. For relief of the suffering He forgot to take food for Himself. Multitudes, weary, pain-ridden, and heartsick, came to Him and found healing and relief. It is said of Him, and of no other, that if all the deeds of kindness that He did were written down, the world could not contain the books.
That is the kind of man Jesus was.
That is the kind of person God is.
Then Jesus died on the cross to take away the sin of the world, to become the Redeemer and Savior of humanity.
He rose from the dead and is alive now—not merely a historical character but a living Person. This is the most important fact of history and the most vital force in the world today.
The whole Bible is built around this beautiful story of Christ and around His promise of life eternal to those who accept Him. The Bible was written only that people might believe, and understand, and know, and love, and follow Christ.
Christ, the center and heart of the Bible, the center and heart of history, is also the center and heart of our lives. Our eternal destiny is in His hand. Our acceptance or rejection of Him as our Lord and Savior determines for each of us eternal glory or eternal ruin—heaven or hell, one or the other.
The most important decision anyone is ever called on to make is to settle in one’s heart, once for all, the matter of one’s attitude toward Christ.
On that depends everything.
It is a glorious thing to be a Christian, the most exalted privilege of mankind. The Creator of all things wants to have a personal relationship with each and every one of us! To accept Christ as Savior, Lord, and Master, and to strive sincerely and devotedly to follow in the way of life He taught, is certainly and by far the most reasonable and most satisfactory way to live. It means peace, peace of mind, contentment of heart, forgiveness, happiness, hope, life abundant, life that shall never end.
Although it is not possible to verify every incident in the Bible, the thousands of discoveries of archaeology since the mid-1800s have demonstrated the reliability and plausibility of the Bible narrative.
The Bible has a lot to say about the Lord, the creation, and time:
In the beginning was the Word,
and the Word was with God,
and the Word was God.
He was with God in the beginning.
All things were created through Him,
and apart from Him not one thing was created
that has been created. (John 1:1-3)
However, we do speak a wisdom among the mature, but not a wisdom of this age, or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. On the contrary, we speak God’s hidden wisdom in a mystery, a wisdom God predestined before the ages for our glory. (1 Corinthians 2:6-7)
If we could stand outside of our Universe, we would see an expanding bubble that contains everything we experience:
The Lord told us about our expanding Universe from the very beginning. Over and over in the Holy Bible, the Lord speaks of “stretching out” the heavens:
A declaration of the Lord,
who stretched out the heavens,
laid the foundation of the earth,
and formed the spirit of man within him. (Zechariah 12:1)
In the story of Job, the Lord is asking Job if he knows the physical and moral laws by which the course of nature is governed (Do you know the laws of heaven?) In asking Job that question, God was helping His troubled servant to understand just how little humans really know in comparison with the limitless wisdom of the Creator.
Then the Lord answered Job from the whirlwind. He said:
Who is this who obscures My counsel
with ignorant words?
In Chapter 38, the Lord finally makes His appearance to Job, and talks to him directly:
Then the Lord answered Job from the whirlwind. He said:
Who is this who obscures My counsel
with ignorant words?
Get ready to answer Me like a man;
when I question you, you will inform Me.
Where were you when I established the earth?
Tell Me, if you have understanding.
Who fixed its dimensions? Certainly you know!
Who stretched a measuring line across it?
What supports its foundations?
Or who laid its cornerstone
while the morning stars sang together
and all the sons of God shouted for joy? (Job 38:1-7)
Can you fasten the chains of the Pleiades
or loosen the belt of Orion?
Can you bring out the constellations in their season
and lead the Bear and her cubs?
Do you know the laws of heaven?
Can you impose its authority on earth? (Job 38: 31-33)
Who put wisdom in the heart
or gave the mind understanding? (Job 38: 36)
After the Lord is finished with His discourse, Job is humbled:
Then Job replied to the Lord:
I know that You can do anything
and no plan of Yours can be thwarted.
You asked, “Who is this who conceals My counsel with ignorance?”
Surely I spoke about things I did not understand,
things too wonderful for me to know. (Job 42: 1-6)
Bible prophecy foretells a 10-nation military alliance that will rise out of a revived Roman Empire (the European Union) and will come under the control of the Antichrist (Daniel 7:23-24). Unknown to many Christians, a 10-nation military alliance appeared in Europe in 1995, called the Western European Union (or the Brussels Treaty Powers).
These 10 nations are members of both NATO and the European Union. What bound them together was a mutual defense obligation under Article Five of the modified Brussels Treaty, which meant that an attack against one would be an attack against all.
Yet, on March 31, 2010, the 10 nations announced that they had agreed to terminate their alliance and transfer the Western European Union’s powers to the European Union – which, under the Lisbon Treaty, has developed a mutual defense obligation that includes all the EU member states.
He also said to me, “The waters you saw, where the prostitute was seated, are peoples, multitudes, nations, and languages. The 10 horns you saw, and the beast, will hate the prostitute. They will make her desolate and naked, devour her flesh, and burn her up with fire. For God has put it into their hearts to carry out His plan by having one purpose and to give their kingdom to the beast until God’s words are accomplished. And the woman you saw is the great city that has an empire over the kings of the earth.” (Revelation 17)
According to the Holy Bible, there are two humans (the beast and the “false prophet”) that are possessed by Satan in the last days, and they control a one-world government and religion.
The first scriptural references to the beast and his mark are in Revelation 13:
Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns like a lamb and spoke like a dragon. And he exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence, and causes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived. He was granted the power to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed. He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.
Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.
According to the Scriptures, the mark of the beast is received on the right hand or forehead. With modern technology, it is very possible that this mark may be directly linked with a computer chip implant. This is already being used in pilot programs all over the world. A tiny microchip which can be read by a scanner is inserted into a spot below the animal’s skin. “Infopet” in California boast the ability to keep track of 4 billion cats and dogs worldwide. This technology has proven that keeping track of large populations through implants and centralized computer data banks is completely feasible.
Already we are constantly hearing about the “New World Order”, or “global community”, and these buzz slogans are slowly sinking in as the world heads towards an international financial and political system, a cashless society controlled by a computer database that covers the entire globe, keeping track of every man, woman, and child, where they cross borders and when they buy and sell–exactly like the one predicted in Revelation chapter 13 nearly 2,000 years ago!
At the end of the Tribulation, the demon-driven armies stop fighting each other, and turn against the Lord:
Then I saw the beast, the kings of the earth, and their armies gathered together to wage war against the rider on the horse and against His army. But the beast was taken prisoner, and along with him the false prophet, who had performed the signs in his presence. He deceived those who accepted the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image with these signs. Both of them were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulfur. The rest were killed with the sword that came from the mouth of the rider on the horse, and all the birds were filled with their flesh. (Revelation 19:19-21)
Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. (Revelation 3:10)
If you are not sure that you are saved, you can accept Christ into your life right now, by praying:
“Lord Jesus, I believe you are the Son of God. Thank you for dying on the cross for my sins. Please forgive my sins and give me the gift of eternal life. I ask you in to my life and heart to be my Lord and Savior.”