Merkel Warns EU Against Kneejerk Reaction

German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday warned EU member states against drawing hasty conclusions about Britain’s decision to quit the bloc, as that risked further splitting Europe.

“We take note of the British people’s decision with regret. There is no doubt that this is a blow to Europe and to the European unification process,” she said.

But “what the consequences of this would be… would depend on whether we — the other 27 member states of the EU — prove to be willing and able to not draw quick and simple conclusions from the referendum in Great Britain, which would only further divide Europe,” said Merkel.

Member states should “calmly and prudently analyse and evaluate the situation, before making the right decisions together,” said Merkel, who will host talks with French President Francois Hollande, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi and European Council president Donald Tusk in Berlin on Monday.

Source: Merkel warns EU against kneejerk reaction to Brexit

How long was Jesus in the grave?

Q: How long was Jesus in the grave?
A: Exactly 72 hours: from Wednesday just before sunset to Saturday just before sunset.

Jesus did many miracles while on Earth, but he gave only one sign that He was the Messiah.

Matthew 12:38 Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered, saying, “Teacher, we want to see a sign from You.”
Matthew 12:39 But He answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.
Matthew 12:40 For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

In other words, Jesus was who He said He was, then He would be dead in the ground for this amount of time or we could not consider Him the Son of God.

When we harmonize the supporting Gospel accounts of this event we find that there is only one length of time that it could be.

John 2:19 …in three days (no more than 72 hours)

Mark 8:31 …after three days (no less than 72 hours)

Matthew 16:21 …the third day (no less than 48 hours and no more than 72 hours)

The only amount of time that satisfies these and all the other corresponding scriptures is exactly 72 hours.

Of course much of the standard thinking on this subject has Jesus dying on Friday evening and being raised on Sunday for approximately 36 hours in the grave – which many do not seem to have a problem with in spite of the pronouncement against a prophet who prophesies and it does not come to pass (Deuteronomy 18:20-22). Try as we may, we cannot come up with three days and three nights much less the 72 hours necessary that Jesus may be proclaimed the Messiah.

The problem lies in the correct determination of which Sabbath immediately followed His crucifixion. We see that it was actually a high Sabbath or a holy day (John 19:31) and not the regular weekly Sabbath. In this case it was the first day of unleavened which follows Passover. Of course this makes perfect sense seeing that Christ was our Passover sacrifice (1 Corinthians 5:7).

In the year of His death this high Sabbath began at sunset on Wednesday evening (when God begins a day). Next we see that the women had to wait until after the end of this Sabbath (Thursday evening at Sunset), to buy spices (Mark 16:1). They prepared them and fragrant oils on Friday and then observed another Sabbath, the weekly one (Friday sunset to Saturday sunset) two days later (Luke 23:56).

Now while it was still dark as the first day of the week (Sunday morning ~6am) began to dawn, the women approached the tomb to find that Jesus had already been resurrected, approximately 12 hours before, (John 20:1; Matthew 28:1-6) proving that He was the Christ.

Saudi Land Purchases Fuel Debate Over US Water Rights

Saudi Arabia’s largest dairy company will soon be unable to farm alfalfa in its own parched country to feed its 170,000 cows. So it’s turning to an unlikely place to grow the water-chugging crop — the drought-stricken American Southwest.

Almarai Co. bought land in January that roughly doubled its holdings in California’s Palo Verde Valley, an area that enjoys first dibs on water from the Colorado River. The company also acquired a large tract near Vicksburg, Arizona, becoming a powerful economic force in a region that has fewer well-pumping restrictions than other parts of the state.

The purchases totaling about 14,000 acres enable the Saudis to take advantage of farm-friendly U.S. water laws.

We’ve got them coming, moving in here and using our natural resources up. Why isn’t anyone paying attention to the ground we live on?” she said.

Christopher Thornberg, an economist at the University of California at Riverside, called alfalfa farms a “shocking waste of a resource” and suggested California consider seizing land under eminent domain.

“At some point in time,” he said, “we have to face the fact that the state cannot continue to prosper under the current circumstances.”

Source: Saudi land purchases fuel debate over US water rights – Yahoo News

France: Exodus of 10,000 Millionaires Amid Rising Muslim Tensions

Rising tensions in France, especially in Paris following a series of Islamist terrorist attacks in 2015, have spurred an exodus of its super-wealthy citizens, a new report on migration trends of millionaires and high-net worth individuals across the world reveals. The report warns that other European countries, including the UK, Belgium, Germany and Sweden “where religious tensions are starting to emerge”, will also see similar trends.

According to the report, Millionaire migration in 2015, France topped the list of countries with maximum millionaire outflows as it lost 10,000 millionaires, or 3% of its millionaire population. Among the cities that saw maximum millionaire outflow, Paris, was at the top – losing about 6% of its millionaire population or 7,000 millionaires in 2015 to the UK, the US, Canada, Australia and Israel.

“The large outflow of millionaires from France is notable – France is being heavily impacted by rising religious tensions between Christians and Muslims, especially in urban areas. We expect that millionaire migration away from France will accelerate over the next decade as these tensions escalate,” the report warns.

Source: France: Exodus of 10,000 millionaires amid rising Muslim tensions

EU Planning to Threaten “Action” Against Israeli Settlements

At the time of the end, the King of the North, the Beast, will occupy the Holy Land (Daniel 11:45). Here we see that there is no love loss between the two right now as the EU continues its pro-Palestinian demands and Israel ignores them.

“The EU will continue to closely monitor developments … and will consider further action in order to protect the viability of the two-state solution, which is constantly eroded by new facts on the ground,” the draft statement says.

It links Palestinian unrest to lack of faith in peace talks. “Only the reestablishment of a political horizon and the resumption of dialogue can stop the violence,” it says.

Israel has, since the last EU statement on the conflict, in July 2015, advanced 2,410 new housing units.

Source: EU may threaten ‘action’ against Israeli settlements

The 144,000 of Revelation 7

Scripture shows:

  • The 144,000 will be sealed after the Great Tribulation.
  • So none of the 144,000 have been sealed at this point in time.
  • Because they are sealed they will not have to go through the Day of the Lord.
  • The 144,000 are physical Israelites that will be alive at this time
  • 12,000 of each tribe of Israel will be sealed [Except Dan; 2 for Joseph]
  • Since the 144,000 will be sealed after the Great Tribulation they will not be afforded a place of safety and will have to go through the Great Tribulation.

Listen to find out how we easily come to these conclusions.



Q&A What occurred between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:2?

Q:  Can you explain the timeline that eventuated between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2?

A:  Let’s have a look at these two verses first:

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.  The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

A better translation for Genesis 1:2 is “The earth became without form, and void…” We find the same exact word, hâyâh, translated appropriately in Genesis 2:7 as became.  The translator  had certain leeway based on the context of the sentence in terms of whether they would translate it was or became. In the case, it really should be the latter.

Back to verse two, the earth, in other words, was not this way to begin, but became this way over the course of time.  The words depicting this state are tohu and bohu.  According to Strong, tohu means:  to lie waste; a desolation, that is, desert; figuratively a worthless thing; confusion, empty place, without form, nothing, (thing of) nought, vain, vanity, waste, wilderness.  Similarly bohu is defined in this manner:  meaning to be empty; a vacuity, that is, (superficially) an undistinguishable ruin: – emptiness, void.

As was mentioned in the Q&A on what happened before Genesis 1:1, the angels predated the creation of the earth and notice what their reaction was in Job 38:4-7 when the earth was originally created:

Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth… when the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?

It stands to reason that the angels would not have shouted for joy if the earth had been an empty morass of confusion or a wasteland devoid of beauty as it was to become later.  In addition to this, it fits in perfectly with what we know of God’s character.  He does everything decently and in order and not in a confused manner (1 Corinthians 14:33, 40).

The question then is how did the earth become this way between verses 1 and 2 of Genesis 1?  To answer this we need to go back to the ultimate creation of the angelic realm – Lucifer.  His name means “light bringer” and he was the “seal of perfection” and “perfect in [his] ways” (Ezekiel 28:12, 15).

Being the epitome of angelic creation though would prove to be his undoing.  In Isaiah 14:14, Lucifer’s ego got the best of him and he said, “…I will be like the Most High.”  The thoughts of his heart were that he could and should be above God since there can only be one who is the “highest” (Isaiah 14:13).

When this thought became action, Lucifer said he would rise above the clouds (Isaiah 14:13).  This puts his location at that time as being on earth.  Presumably his assignment was to tend the earth and prepare for the coming of man.  But this was not good enough for Lucifer so he left his domain, the position that he occupied here on earth in an attempt to take God’s office.

It was then at this time that the transition from Lucifer to Satan happened. God calls things as they are and when Lucifer committed himself to acting another way, one that was contrary to Him, Lucifer became Satan.  Satan means enemy or adversary and that is exactly what he had become to God and would be to man.  Satan was able to persuade one-third of the angels (the ones that are now demons; Revelation 12:4) to join him in his assault on the throne.  His plans were derailed when he was met in heaven by Michael and his angels and a war ensued (Revelation 12:7).

It was during this momentous conflict that we presume that the earth, as well as other celestial bodies received their pockmarks, some of which can still be seen today throughout our solar system.  It was because of this war that the earth became tohu and bohu and thus needed to be renewed (Psalm 104:30; Isaiah 45:18, the word tohu is translated “vain” here).  As a side note this battle also goes a long ways towards explaining what happened to dinosaurs and why the re-creation week was a literal week.

Satan and his minions lost the war and he was no longer welcome in the heaven where God resides.  Because of these iniquities Satan and the demons were cast back down to the earth, where he had previously been (Revelation 12:8-9; 1 Peter 2:4; Jude 6; Luke 10:18; Ezekiel 28:16).   This, of course, supersedes the renewal of the earth and the placement of man here.  In Genesis 3 we read that the serpent, Satan the devil, wasted no time getting into his new role deceiver which places him back on earth before the creation of Adam and Eve.

To summarize the chain of events that have to be taken a little from here and a little from there, we can conclude that much transpired in the indeterminable amount of time between first two verses of the Bible.  That being said, it is evident that God did not create the earth and universe in disarray, but rather it became that way through the prideful and belligerent acts of Satan who had been Lucifer.  Subsequently, he and the demons were cast back to earth where they had originally become discontent with their assignment from God.




Categories Q&A

Ruth 4


The book of Ruth is more than just a story about kindness even though that plays an important part in the book along with other sub-themes such as repentance, faith, grace, and works; characteristics that are considered to be New Covenant traits.  What we see though is that the word translated into a form of kind (kindly, kindness) is found three times in the book of Ruth, it only refers to Ruth twice and the word is more often translated to “mercy.” Now on the other hand we have the word for redeem/redeemer and it is found 21 times in the four chapters of the book of Ruth with 13 of those times in the last chapter…but redemption is only half of what this prose is really about.

We pick up the story today at the end of the harvest and at the time of the year we are currently in: the Pentecost season.

Read moreRuth 4

Shaped Through Adversity

What is it that God is doing in your life right now?  I think we all know the general answer to this – He is growing us!  He is building holy righteous character within us!  He is making us like His Son who came and lived a perfect sinless life.

“We know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.  For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.”  (Romans 8:28-29)

Of course this is what any Christian wants – to be like Christ.  In fact, when we call ourselves a “Christian” we are identifying ourselves as a follower of Christ.  We are saying that we want to live as He lived and be as He was on earth.

The problem is that we “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”  (Romans 3:23)  Our nature is an enemy to God (Romans 8:7) and if we are left to our own devices we will go the wrong way – away from Christ.

“O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walks to direct his steps.”  (Jeremiah 10:23)

“There is a way which seems right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” (Proverbs 14:12, 16:25)

How is it then that God shapes and molds us into what we should be? It is through the adversity of trials and tribulation.  “He is like a refiner’s fire And like launderers’ soap.” (Malachi 3:2).  Peter writes knowing how we will view testing, but nonetheless it brings about the intended fruit.

“… though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” (1 Peter 1:6-7)

It is God’s fervent desire that we be ready spiritually; that we are His express image and character; the same as His Son that we are to be pursuing.  He accomplishes this in us by and through trials.

Christ set the precedent in this also:  “For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:  Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:  Who, when He was reviled, reviled not again; when He suffered, He threatened not; but committed himself to Him that judges righteously.”  (1 Peter 2:21-23)

We, if we are true Christians, will have to follow His example of suffering AND we should undergo the trials with the correct frame of mind and right attitude.

“For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God.” (1 Peter 2:20)

Jesus did not transgress the law of God and still suffered unjustly.  How much more then should we accept justly and properly the testing that God deems necessary for us to endure?

Listen to: Shaped Through Adversity or watch: Why Does God Allow Christians to Suffer?