Prophecy News – MEGA-PASTOR -TEN COMMANDMENTS NO LONGER APPLICABLE

Prophecy News - MEGA-PASTOR -TEN COMMANDMENTS NO LONGER APPLICABLE

WASHINGTON – A mega-pastor of one of the largest “evangelical” churches in the U.S. is attacking the Old Testament again, this time insisting Jesus rendered the Ten Commandments null and void, issuing one new law “as a replacement for everything.”

Andy Stanley, pastor of the 34,000-member North Point Community Church in suburban Atlanta, who famously advised his flock to “unhitch” from the Old Testament in a sermon last spring, has now penned an article promoting his new book saying laws such as “Thou shalt have no other gods before me” and “Thou shalt not kill” are no longer relevant to Christians living in the New Covenant era.

“You’ve heard the story before: A group of Christians puts up a monument of the Ten Commandments in a public space or on government property,” begins Stanley in his article titled, “Why do Christians want to post the Ten Commandments and not the Sermon on the Mount?” “Someone says it violates the separation of church and state. The Christians say taking it down would violate their freedom of speech. There’s some back and forth in court and both sides say some not-so-great things about the other. Rinse and repeat. But how many times have you seen Christians trying to post the text of the sermon on the mount in a public place? Or the all-encompassing commandment Jesus gave us? ‘A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another — John 13:34 The one commandment! Doesn’t have the same ring to it, does it? But if we’re going to create a monument to stand as a testament to our faith, shouldn’t it at least be a monument of something that actually applies to us?”

Stanley goes on to write that the Ten Commandments are from the Old Covenant, which he says “played a significant role in God’s creation of the nation of Israel. It gave them moral guidelines and helped separate this new nation from their neighbors. This was part of the formal agreement (or covenant) God created with his people, but Jesus’ death and resurrection signaled the end of that covenant and all the rules and regulations associated with it. Jesus didn’t issue his new command as an additional commandment to the existing list of commands. He didn’t say, ‘Here’s the 614th law.’ Jesus issued his new commandment as a replacement for everything in the existing list. Including the big ten. Just as his new covenant replaced the old covenant, Jesus’ new commandment replaced all the old commandments.”

The implications of that unequivocal statement have been staggering to other Christians who point out how the words of Jesus and the apostles seem to contradict them flatly and reject such a conclusion.

In Matthew 5:17-19, Jesus says: “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”

gospel-book-196“Andy Stanley is not preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom that Jesus and the apostles preached,” says Joseph Farah, author of “The Gospel in Every Book of the Old Testament,” which documents what he characterizes as “the miraculous, supernatural and perfect continuity of the Good News of redemption throughout both the Hebrew and Greek Scriptures.” “Nor is Stanley preaching the Gospel of personal salvation that Jesus and the apostles preached. Instead, he is preaching replacement theology – completely discarding about three-quarters of the Bible and misinterpreting what’s left.”

Farah calls Stanley’s reductionist gospel “Chick-fil-A theology,” an exegesis based on modern American Christian cultural traditions rather than the Bible.

“Participants in the new covenant (that’s Christians) are not required to obey any of the commandments found in the first part of their Bibles,” writes Stanley. “Participants in the new covenant are expected to obey the single command Jesus issued as part of his new covenant: as I have loved you, so you must love one another. The new covenant replaced the old one. The covenant established by Jesus retired the covenant God established with the nation of Israel. This is why most Christians don’t mind a little bacon with their eggs. It’s why you can’t get either at Chick-fil-A on Sunday. (If we were still taking our marching orders from the old covenant, they would be closed on Saturday.)”

Writing a response to Stanley’s new assault on the Hebrew Scriptures, Grayson Gilbert, a graduate student pursuing a masters of divinity degree at Moody Bible Institute, disputes that Jesus only left His disciples with one new law to follow. In fact, Jesus issued hundreds of commandments in the gospel accounts, while affirming the Ten Commandments and the law and the prophets in Matthew 22:37-40: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”

“Interestingly enough, Stanley bypasses these verses in his discussions, though I have a feeling he would explain them away and disregard that they are drawn from Deuteronomy 6:5 and Leviticus 19:18, which are legal texts in and of themselves given to Israel,” writes Gilbert. “Furthermore, it is plainly stated in the text itself, these are a summation of the law and prophets.”

Stanley blames the Old Testament , not misguided Christianity, for centuries of horrors and abuse of those of different beliefs: “The justifications Christians have used since the fourth century to mistreat people find their roots in old covenant practices and values. Imagine trying to leverage the Sermon on the Mount to start an inquisition, launch a crusade, or incite a pogrom against Jews. But reach back into the old covenant, and there’s plenty to work with.”

“This not only fundamentally misunderstands the nature of God, but essentially claims He has instituted a means of oppression and ill-begotten values in the Old Testament,” writes Grayson. “In other words, the Old Testament is only the foundation of violence, oppression, and so forth, rather than revealing the character and standards of God. Let me be quite frank, Andy is about as close as one can get to saying the God of the Old Testament is different than the New Testament without explicitly stating, ‘The God of the Old Testament is different than the God of the New Testament.’”

It’s not the first time Stanley has been accused of the heresy of Marcion, who took just such a position.

Stanley concludes: “While Jesus was foreshadowed in the old covenant, he did not come to extend it. He came to fulfill it, put a bow on it, and establish something entirely new. The “new” Jesus unleashed made the faith of first-century believers formidable. Their apologetic was irrefutable. Their courage, unquestionable. And the results were remarkable. Dear Christian reader: Why? Why? Why would we even be tempted to reach back beyond the cross to borrow from a covenant that was temporary and inferior to the covenant established for us at Calvary?”

“Jesus is One and the Same as the God of the Old Testament,” says Farah. “He is described in John 1 as the Creator, the maker of all things that were made and in as the One and Only Mediator between God and man in 1 Timothy 2:5. It’s not just that Jesus was foreshadowed in the Old Testament, as Stanley says. He was there at the beginning. He tells the Pharisees: ‘Before Abraham was, I am.’ In other words, Jesus referred to Himself as the great ‘I am,’ one in the same as the Father. There is no separation, no disagreement, between the Father and the Son. They are One.”

Stanley’s new book is called, “Irresistible: Reclaiming the New that Jesus Unleashed for the World.” It is currently ranked at Amazon as one of the most popular books in the “church leadership” category. Farah’s new book, prior to release, as one of the most popular in “Old Testament” category.”

“Maybe they are dueling books for a time such as this,” says Farah. “This is a teaching that must be countered by believers.”

Farah has challenged Stanley’s assertions on the irrelevance and inapplicability of the Old Testament in a series of commentaries:

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News and Prophecy – Prophecy in news – Early Warning Signs of Global Warming: Droughts and Fires

Early Warning Signs of Global Warming Droughts and Fires

High temperatures, strong winds and months of dry weather are creating severe conditions in various parts of the world. Over 400 fires are burning in western Canada, and more than 100 fires are burning in the United States (Vancouver Sun, August 8, 2018; Reuters, August 11, 2018). Much of the state of California has been ablaze for weeks, with 18 fires currently burning. Nearly a million homes are at high or very high risk of destruction from fire (LocalSYR.com, August 13, 2018)! The Mendocino fire, the largest in California’s history, has already burned over 450 square miles (MSN, August 8, 2018). Homeowners insurance rates are expected to rise drastically as a result of the fires.

On the other side of the globe, the state of New South Wales in southeast Australia is engulfed in drought. The government is now allowing farmers to shoot kangaroos who vie with cattle over limited pasture land (Deutsche Welle, August 8, 2018). Australia’s prime minister recently made the sobering observation, “Now we are the land of drought.” Australian farmers and ranchers expect major crop failures and even cattle deaths. Wild fires are also ravaging Greece and other European nations, bringing devastation and death (The Guardian, August 12, 2018). 

While some blame “global warming,” others see these weather extremes as part of predictable weather cycles. However, Bible prophecies provide additional insights. Jesus Christ warned that as we approach the end of the age, we should expect to see “famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places” and said these dramatic events are just “the beginning of sorrows” (Matthew 24:7–8). Long ago, God warned that Israelite-descended nations at the end of the age (such as Australia, Canada and the U.S.) would experience serious drought and related consequences due to their sins and rejection of Him (Deuteronomy 28:17, 23, 38). The Bible does far more than tell us these sobering circumstances are a foretaste of what is to come—it also explains why these disasters are coming. The current drought-related events we are watching are sobering, but the Bible helps us understand both “why” and “what is next.” To learn more about this timely topic, read or listen to Fourteen Signs Announcing Christ’s Return, or go online to read or listen to Who Controls the Weather?

Early Warning Signs of Global Warming: Droughts and Fires

Warmer global temperatures are expected to cause an intensification of the hydrologic cycle, with increased evaporation over both land and water. The higher evaporation rates will lead to greater drying of soils and vegetation, especially during the warm season. Climate models also project changes in the distribution and timing of rainfall. The combination of a decrease in summer rainfall and increased evaporation will lead to more severe and longer-lasting droughts in some areas. Increasing drought frequency has the potential to affect land-based natural and managed ecosystems, coastal systems, and both freshwater quality and quantity. Increasing drought frequency also has the potential to increase the likelihood of wildfires.

Predicted changes in the regional distribution of precipitation are uncertain, primarily because the scale of most climate models is too coarse to resolve important hydrologic processes such as the formation and distribution of clouds and storms. Nevertheless, model projections suggest increased vulnerability to drought for certain areas (Kattenberg et al., 1996). Simulations using higher atmospheric CO2 levels generally predict drier summers at northern high latitudes (e.g., Gregory et al., 1997). In these regions, less winter precipitation falling as snow and warmer temperatures leads to an earlier drying of soils in the spring, increasing the likelihood of drought. Other areas strongly affected by snow, such as mountainous watersheds, will be similarly affected. An increase in the ratio of rain to snow, accelerated spring snowmelt, and a shorter snow season will lead to more rapid, earlier, and greater spring runoff but reduced summer flow.

The observed climate trends over the last century have been dominated by increasing precipitation, rather than by drier conditions (see Downpours, Heavy Snowfalls, and Flooding). Some regional decreases in precipitation have been observed, notably in parts of Africa, the Caribbean, and tropical Asia (IPCC, 1998, Appendix A). There is presently no evidence for an increase in the frequency of droughts in North America over the past century, in part because the severe droughts of the 1930 s dominate the historical record (Karl et al., 1996). Studies of past drought variability in the US Great Plains, however, indicate the potential for more severe and frequent droughts in the future (Laird et al., 1996; Woodhouse and Overpeck, 1998), and human-induced warming may exacerbate this natural variability.

The environmental and ecological consequences of the summer 1999 drought in the eastern United States provide examples of situations that may become more frequent as climate changes. Without freshwater to rinse out rivers and streams, salt water encroached further up rivers in many areas of the mid-Atlantic coast (USGS, 1999). The high salt content threatened water supplies in cities that depend on freshwater from rivers and prevented farmers in some areas from irrigating their crops. Decreased freshwater runoff also led to increased salinity and low oxygen conditions in Chesapeake Bay, causing fish kills and other ecological changes. As future sea level rise shifts the saltwater-freshwater boundary farther inland, droughts will exacerbate the geographic extent and impacts of saltwater encroachment into coastal aquifers.

Susceptibility to wildfires increases during periods of drought. During 1997-98, the strong El Niño was associated with extremely dry conditions and large forest fires in many areas of the world, including Indonesia, eastern Russia, Brazil, Central America, and Florida. Although “slash-and-burn” land clearing methods and accidents triggered many of the fires, the severe drought conditions allowed them to spread out of control. Droughts have been relatively frequent since the late 1970s in some areas where drought usually accompanies El Niño events (e.g., north-east Australia) (Nicholls et al., 1996). This presumably reflects the relatively frequent El Niño events during this period. A new study suggests that climate change may produce a quasi-permanent/stable El Niño-like condition in the Pacific basin, interrupted by more extreme cold (La Nina) events (Timmerman et al., 1999). If the frequency of strong El Niños increases, the frequency and severity of droughts and forest fires may also increase, with potentially devastating effects on ecosystems if the increased fire frequency prevents the regeneration of certain species and ecosystems.

References

Gregory, J.M., J.F.B. Mitchell, and A.J. Brady, 1997. Summer drought in northern midlatitudes in a time-dependent CO2 climate experiment. Journal of Climate 10, 662-686.

IPCC, 1998. The Regional Impacts of Climate Change: An Assessment of Vulnerability, (Eds RT Watson, MC Zinyowera, RH Moss), Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.

Karl, T. R, R.W. Knight, D.R. Easterling, and R.G. Quayle, 1996. Indices of climate change for the United States. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society 77 (2), 279-292.

Kattenberg, A., F. Giorgi, H. Grassl, G. A. Meehl, J. F. B. Mitchell, R. J. Stouffer, T. Tokioka, A. J. Weaver, and T. M.L. Wigley, 1996. Climate models – projections of future climate, in Climate Change 1995: The Science of Climate Change, 285-357, (Eds J. T. Houghton, L. G. M. Filho, B. A. Callander, N. Harris, A. Kattenberg, and K. Maskell) Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.

Laird, K. R., S. C. Fritz, K. A. Maasch, and B. F. Cumming, 1996. Greater drought intensity and frequency before AD 1200 in the Northern Great Plains, USA. Nature 384, 552-554.

Nicholls, N., G.V. Gruza, J. Jouzel, T.R. Karl, L.A. Ogallo, and D.E. Parker, 1996. Observed climate variability and change, in Climate Change 1995: The Science of Climate Change, (Eds J.T. Houghton, L.G.M. Filho, B.A. Callander, N. Harris, A. Kattenberg, and K. Maskell), 133-192, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.

Timmerman, A.J. Oberhuber, A. Bacher, M. Esch, M. Latif and E. Roeckner, 1999. Increased El Nino frequency in a climate model forced by future greenhouse warming. Nature 398, 694-696.

USGS, 1999. 1999 Summer drought may become century s worst Mid Atlantic region experiencing most dramatic effects. News Release, U.S. Geological Survey. 2 August 1999.

Woodhouse, C.A. and J.T. Overpeck, 1998. 2000 years of drought variability in the central United States. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society 79 (12), 2693-2714.

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Jerusalem Bible Prophecy – Will Shabbat Massacre Usher in Final War for Third Temple?

Will Shabbat Massacre Usher in Final War for Third Temple

“And say to him, “Thus said God of Hosts: Behold, a man called the Branch shall branch out from the place where he is, and he shall build the Temple of Hashem.” Zechariah 6:12 (The Israel Bible™)

The horrific murder of three family members on Friday night signaled a painful upsurge in the battle for the Temple Mount indicated that the recent struggle is part of the archetypal end-of-days battle between good and evil that could bring the Third Temple.

In a bloody and brutal attack, a Palestinian terrorist entered the house of a family as they sat down to their Sabbath meal on Friday and murdered a grandfather and two of his children. The motive the terrorist cited on the Facebook post announcing his intentions was to avenge the placing of metal detectors on the Temple Mount.

The attack was, indeed, connected to the Temple Mount, said Rabbi Shlomo Katz, a Torah educator and musician, but not the way the Muslims think. Rather, he believes that Jewish teachings show the attack was integrally connected to the coming of the Third Temple.

“With the murder this Shabbat, we see that everything is coming down to the Temple Mount,” Rabbi Katz told Breaking Israel News. “In these final days before Moshiach (Messiah), we need to have clarity about this.”

Rabbi Katz sees this tumultuous time as an opportunity for Israel to move forward towards the Third Temple.

“The Temple Mount was in our hands and we gave it away. We have another chance now to say to the world that this is God’s house,” the rabbi said. “That is what the struggle is about, and has always been about.”

The rabbi stated that the real struggle for the Third Temple “begins in our hearts.”

“The Temple service can only be done in joy, and there is no joy like dispelling doubt,” he said. “We are arguing about things, like the murder of a family, like the Temple Mount, things that there really should be no doubt at all in anyone’s minds, especially ours. Only when we have no doubt will we be ready for the Temple.”

This heinous act comes at the end of the three-week period of austerity leading up to the fast day on the Ninth day of Av, a holiday commemorating the destruction of the two Temples. In two days, all of Israel will be mourning the Temple as the memory of the Salomon family rests heavily on the hearts of the Jewish people.

But there is a powerfully Phoenix-like aspect to the holiday. Though the sad day is a reminder of great loss, the Talmud (Brachot 2:4) teaches that the Messiah will be born on the Ninth day of Av. This renewal of the Temple coming from its own destruction is referred to explicitly by the Prophet Zechariah.

Thus said God of Hosts: The fast of the fourth month, the fast of the fifth month (Av), the fast of the seventh month, and the fast of the tenth month shall become occasions for joy and gladness, happy festivals for the House of Yehuda; but you must love honesty and integrity. Zechariah 8:19

According to Jewish tradition, the arrival of the Messiah will be necessarily be preceded by pains, similar to the pangs of a woman giving birth, as referred to by the prophet Isaiah.

Like a woman with child Approaching childbirth, Writhing and screaming in her pangs, So are we become because of You, Hashem. Isaiah 27:16

The Yalkut Shimoni, a compilation of rabbinic commentary on the Bible believed to have been composed in the 13th century, said these pains would be caused by conflict between nations.

The year in which Melech Hamashiach will be revealed, all the nations of the world will be provoking each other…The king of Persia (Iran) will provoke the King of Arabia. The King of Arabia, will go to Edom (the leader of the Christian nations) to take counsel and the King of Persia (Ahmadinejad) will threaten to destroy the entire world. The nations of the world will be outraged and panic. They will fall on their faces and will experience pains like birth pangs. Israel too, will be outraged and in a state of panic ask, “Where do we go?” Yalkut Shimoni

Moshe Feiglin, a right-wing political figure and former member of Knesset, warned that this current conflict could evolve into a final battle for Israel’s very existence.

“They killed two policemen and then they killed a family,” Moshe Feiglin said. “This is all because for fifty years we have said the Temple Mount is theirs and not ours. If the beating heart of the Holy Land belongs to them, then it all belongs to them.

“If we give in now, we will bring down the final, most destructive war.”

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Prophecy NEWS – Prophetic Vision: ‘I Will Begin to Manifest Myself Alive at the Wailing Wall’

"O Israel, your 'Wailing' Wall shall become a 'Hailing' Wall." To wail means to cry out with lament or grief. To hail means to salute, greet or acclaim enthusiastically, such as, "Hail, King of the Jews!" In the Spirit, I saw the very shekinah glory of God begin to gradually seep through the cracks of the Wailing Wall while "homecoming angels" on the wall were stuffing love notes into every crack, imparting revelation into the minds and hearts of the "standing room only" multitude of God's chosen people who were now facing the answers to their prayers. Blinders began dropping off of their eyes as the Wailing Wall appeared to be turning into a giant theater screen. Many began to see visions of the King of kings and Lord of lords in all of His glory in 3-D technicolor. In the Spirit, these panoramic scenes on the wall could be seen by the Jewish people all around the world. A homesick feeling began to spread in epidemic proportion in the hearts of God's chosen people, turning their hearts toward home. God would not force His people to return home, but He did have "a ways and means" committee to help make them willing to go. In the Spirit, I sensed great earth-shaking events were now being pre-approved by the Father. These events will cause a great nest-stirring for God's people, the Jews, to be willing to leave where they had grown comfortable, living in seemingly secure places of the earth. But I saw a great shaking in the world's economy coming that would literally gouge the side out of their Titanic-like financial investments and businesses. I sensed the Father conversing with the angels on this, saying, "Yes, that will do it!" Synagogues were being revisited by the greatest teacher ever, Jesus Christ, revealing Himself through scripture as their Messiah—the King of the Jews! In the Spirit, I saw angels setting up camp around Jewish synagogues, and Jesus Himself walking right through many synagogue doors into the midst of their ceremonies. I also saw Him stand up in their midst and read and proclaim, once again, Isaiah 61, but this time, He read the whole chapter as many of their ears and eyes began to pop open! To many, Jesus began to show Himself openly. Some were having visions; others were convinced they were seeing Him! "And the plazas of the city will be filled with young boys and girls playing in her open places" (Zech. 8:5). I saw children dancing in the streets of Jerusalem. At first, it appeared that they were dancing with a make-believe friend. I then saw Jesus laughing and twirling them in the air and catching them as they danced together, as the joy of the Lord began running down through the streets of Jerusalem and beyond! Parents of these small children began to experience the presence of God as children began to talk about their experiences, visions and encounters with Jesus Christ, proclaiming Him to be their Messiah! Children were bringing His anointing and carrying His glory into their families! In closing, I sense the Father saying, "The intercession of nations for Israel is beginning to be heard, creating the greatest move of My Spirit in all of history in the lives of My chosen people, the Jews. Intercession must increase and prevail to bring My people home."

“O Israel, your ‘Wailing’ Wall shall become a ‘Hailing’ Wall.” To wail means to cry out with lament or grief. To hail means to salute, greet or acclaim enthusiastically, such as, “Hail, King of the Jews!”

In the Spirit, I saw the very shekinah glory of God begin to gradually seep through the cracks of the Wailing Wall while “homecoming angels” on the wall were stuffing love notes into every crack, imparting revelation into the minds and hearts of the “standing room only” multitude of God’s chosen people who were now facing the answers to their prayers. Blinders began dropping off of their eyes as the Wailing Wall appeared to be turning into a giant theater screen. Many began to see visions of the King of kings and Lord of lords in all of His glory in 3-D technicolor. In the Spirit, these panoramic scenes on the wall could be seen by the Jewish people all around the world. A homesick feeling began to spread in epidemic proportion in the hearts of God’s chosen people, turning their hearts toward home. God would not force His people to return home, but He did have “a ways and means” committee to help make them willing to go.

In the Spirit, I sensed great earth-shaking events were now being pre-approved by the Father. These events will cause a great nest-stirring for God’s people, the Jews, to be willing to leave where they had grown comfortable, living in seemingly secure places of the earth. But I saw a great shaking in the world’s economy coming that would literally gouge the side out of their Titanic-like financial investments and businesses. I sensed the Father conversing with the angels on this, saying, “Yes, that will do it!”

Synagogues were being revisited by the greatest teacher ever, Jesus Christ, revealing Himself through scripture as their Messiah—the King of the Jews!

In the Spirit, I saw angels setting up camp around Jewish synagogues, and Jesus Himself walking right through many synagogue doors into the midst of their ceremonies. I also saw Him stand up in their midst and read and proclaim, once again, Isaiah 61, but this time, He read the whole chapter as many of their ears and eyes began to pop open! To many, Jesus began to show Himself openly. Some were having visions; others were convinced they were seeing Him!

“And the plazas of the city will be filled with young boys and girls playing in her open places” (Zech. 8:5).

I saw children dancing in the streets of Jerusalem. At first, it appeared that they were dancing with a make-believe friend. I then saw Jesus laughing and twirling them in the air and catching them as they danced together, as the joy of the Lord began running down through the streets of Jerusalem and beyond! Parents of these small children began to experience the presence of God as children began to talk about their experiences, visions and encounters with Jesus Christ, proclaiming Him to be their Messiah! Children were bringing His anointing and carrying His glory into their families!

In closing, I sense the Father saying, “The intercession of nations for Israel is beginning to be heard, creating the greatest move of My Spirit in all of history in the lives of My chosen people, the Jews. Intercession must increase and prevail to bring My people home.”

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Prophecy NEWS. Cindy Jacobs: The Lord Wants to Break the Spirit of Weariness in Your Life

The Lord Wants to Break the Spirit of Weariness in Your Life
“You cannot let yourself go down in your destiny due to the weariness of the battle.” (Pexels)

I awakened the other morning with a Spanish word that I wasn’t quite sure what it meant, “basta.” It means enough, fed up, I’ve had all I’m going to take.

I felt from the Holy Spirit, as I was praying, that there was this spirit of weariness that is coming on people. It’s actually demonic. It’s saying, you’re never going to get ahead. It makes you tired emotionally. The Bible says in Daniel 7:25 that he’s going to persecute—or Satan will persecute— or wear out the saints. I felt that this was like a wearying spirit.

Some of you are going to relate to this. You just feel so tired all the time, you feel, and it’s not a natural tiredness. It’s a soul-tiredness, where you just feel like you can’t get up, you can’t move, you can’t do anything, and I literally heard the Holy Spirit say, “Basta!”

“Fed up, get up,” to the powers of darkness around you. The Lord would say, “You cannot let yourself go down in your destiny due to the weariness of the battle. You cannot let yourself be robbed of the blessings I have for you because you are too tired to fight anymore.”

The Lord would say this morning, “Basta! Stop!” to the enemy. And I want to agree with that, I want to bind that spirit of weariness; I want to bind that which is coming against you. I just feel like the Holy Spirit wants to give you a refreshing. He wants to do something extraordinary for you. He wants to cause you to be able to shake off yesterday’s troubles, yesterday’s anxieties.

I see you’ve gotten into panic mode, where you’re spiraling down and down and down. I just say to the enemy, basta, stop it, in the name of Jesus. I say to your spirit, rise up! There is a refreshing in the presence of the Lord. There’s a rest in God that you can come to.

I’m thinking of Psalm 23, that He’s leading you beside green pastures and still waters for His name’s sake. I’m feeling something break. It’s breaking off of you. It’s breaking off you emotionally, It’s breaking off you physically, and sometimes, I just feel for the Lord that you cannot separate, and even that’s happened to me before, you cannot separate a natural weariness, which we get weary, but from a demonic weariness that is pressing you down. So, this morning, we say enough, stop, basta to what is coming against you.

I speak the peace of God into your soul, and I just want you to receive it. Just receive it by faith, and the Lord would say, “I am giving you an anointing of strength to resist the devil so he’ll flee from you, and just enter into My rest.”

Well, God bless you. I love that word. I’m applying it to my own life.

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After 2,000 Years, Jerusalem Fulfills Prophesied Destiny as ‘Unwalled’ City

Tower of David

“Run speak to this young man saying: Yerushalayim shall be inhabited without walls for the multitude of men and cattle therein. For I saith Hashem will be unto her a wall of fire round about and I will be the glory in the midst of her.” Zechariah 2:8 (The Israel Bible™)

Jerusalem, circumscribed by walls since it was a tiny hamlet inhabited by Jebusites thousands of years ago, is finally fulfilling its prophesied destiny as an unwalled city – a reality which seemed almost impossible until very modern times.

Numerous ancient walls have been discovered by archaeologists plumbing the depths of Jerusalem’s past, including a 7-meter-wide wall from the First Temple period which was found beneath the modern Jewish quarter. The massive wall was built to shore up Jerusalem’s northern defenses in view of the impending invasion by Assyrian king Sennacherib, but it is also testimony to the strategy required to defend a town topographically inferior to the mountains surrounding it.

It would have been unthinkable at this stage to envisage a Jerusalem without walls. David, king of Israel, prayed that God maintain the walls of his capital, asking:

Do good in Thy favour unto Tzion; build Thou the walls of Yerushalayim. (Psalms 51:20)

The walls of Jerusalem were destroyed by the Babylonians during the destruction of the First Temple, but immediately after the Jews returned to Zion, their initial task was to erect walls around Jerusalem. Nehemiah describes in extended detail the building of this wall (Nehemiah 3:1-32) as well as the attempts by the Samaritans to belittle the wall and harm its construction. (3:33-35).

These attempts led to a remarkable feat of construction being attempted by Nehemiah, with workers holding their hammers and chisels in one hand and their swords in the other to prevent the enemy from taking advantage of the unfinished wall.

It is against this backdrop that the prophet Zechariah made the remarkable prophecy that Jerusalem would one day be unwalled.

Yerushalayim shall be inhabited without walls for the multitude of men and cattle therein. For I saith Hashem will be unto her a wall of fire round about and I will be the glory in the midst of her. Zechariah 2:8-9

With such a struggle going on to complete the construction of the wall and its necessity so evident, it seemed utterly far-fetched to imagine a city being inhabited in a defendable manner without walls surrounding it. Indeed, even in subsequent eras Jerusalem remained a walled city and the wall’s status was halakhically (adhering to Jewish law) defined by the requirement to eat certain tithes and sacrifices within the walls of Jerusalem.

At the end of the Second Temple period, with Jerusalem growing and sprawling further northwards beyond the original walls, a second fortified wall was built to the north, containing 14 towers according to the historian Josephus, as well as a moat in front of it. Later, during the life of Jesus, a third wall was built stretching the city even further north.

In subsequent generations, Jerusalem was renamed, repopulated and denuded of its walls, but no Jews were allowed to enter the city by the Roman conquerors. The walls of Jerusalem were erected once again later in a vain attempt to protect against Sassanian, Muslim and Crusader invaders but Jerusalem did not grow beyond its borders even as it gained influence in three religions.

Suleiman the Magnificent restored the walls of Jerusalem in 1536 and they have stood the test of time, but it was only 150 years ago that Jews seriously began contemplating establishing neighborhoods and communities outside the walls.

It was the dream of one Jew, Joseph Rivlin, to be the architect of the fulfillment of Zechariah’s prophecy. Rivlin, a scion of the establishers of the Ashkenazic community in Jerusalem, wished not only to escape the crowded, squalid living conditions in the Old City but also to be surrounded by “the walls of fire” envisaged by Zachariah.

He was a practical dreamer and set about establishing the Nahalat Shiva neighborhood together with six other friends. The only problem was that none of those friends were willing to live in the neighborhood. With armed robbers and wild animals abounding and no walls of fire visible, Rivlin was the sole brave soul who ventured to move there.

Even his wife refused to join him there, and Rivlin led a solitary existence outside the walls for two years and eight months, suffering from frequent attacks by marauders until others finally racked up the courage to join him.

Rivlin went on to found a total of 13 neighborhoods outside the walls, until he earned himself the Yiddish nickname “Shtetlmacher”, or Town-Maker. He died impoverished, unable to pay even the doctor who treated him, but his legacy as the harbinger of Zachariah’s prophecy lives on in modern Jerusalem

Today, in a clear fulfillment of Zechariah’s unlikely prophecy, just 5 percent of Jerusalem’s 800,000 population live today within the walls, while the other 95 percent are spread over a vast municipal area. While Zechariah’s “wall of fire” is not visible to the naked eye, few believers could deny that the modern, unwalled Jerusalem, simply by virtue of its blessed continuance, is protected by Divine grace.

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