Saturday, July 25, 2015
Today religious Jews are in a time of great mourning, the "fast of the fifth month" (Zech. 7:3; 8:19).
I HAVE GOOD NEWS: "Surely HE has borne our GRIEFS and carried our SORROWS; yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But HE was wounded for OUR transgressions, HE was bruised for OUR iniquities; the chastisement for OUR peace was upon Him, and by HIS stripes WE ARE HEALED" (Isaiah 53: 4-5).
Who is HE? HE is the Jewish Messiah. His name is YESHUA. He is the same Lord and Savior of the Christians, but He is holding out His scarred hands to the Jews, saying, "Come unto ME!" His crucifixion is described in Isaiah 53. Jesus/Yeshua is the "suffering servant" and identifies with the Jews in their suffering.
The saddest day on the Jewish calendar begins tonight from sunset to sunset, July 25-26. It is called the NINTH OF AV. Many, many tragedies have befallen the Jewish people on this exact date throughout history, beginning with God's condemning them to wander in the wilderness for 40 YEARS and die there until their children went into the Promised Land.
BOTH THEIR TEMPLES IN JERUSALEM were destroyed on the Ninth of Av - by the Babylonians in 586 B.C. and by the Romans in A.D. 70. Now what are the odds of both temples being destroyed on that exact date? This is the most serious fast day for the Jews besides Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement (coming soon this year September 22-23).
A string of tragedies for the Jews struck on this date of the ninth of Av. Here are a few:
133 A.D. - Bar Kochba revolt against the Romans crushed
1290 - Jews expelled from England by King Edward
1306 - Jews expelled from France after many other expulsions over the years
1492 - Jews expelled from Spain by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella
1942 - Nazis begin mass deportation of Jews from the Warsaw Ghetto to Treblinka death camp
2005 - Israel's unilateral disengagement from Gaza by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon by expelling approximately 9,000 Jewish residents from Gush Katif and other Jewish communities in Gaza on August 15. Actually, the forced expulsion was changed to the tenth of Av because of the traditional mourning and fast of the ninth of Av. Remember that Sharon fell into a coma the following January of 2006. He remained in a coma for eight years! His death came in January of 2014.
This is the tip of the iceberg. Feel free to add to this list by making a comment at the end of this blog.
The Jewish people have endured much suffering down through the ages, fulfilling the prophecies of Moses in Deuteronomy, chapters 28 through 32. But now the prophecies of Zechariah, chapters 12-14, among many other prophecies, are about to be fulfilled in our day. It is a time for the restoration of the Jewish people back to their God by accepting His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, as their Messiah. The physical restoration back to the Land is almost complete. The spiritual restoration will soon be complete, and they will say, "Baruch haba b'Shem Adonai!" --- "Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!"
Friday, July 10, 2015
Reflecting on all the persecution and martyrdom of Christians in the world, especially in the Middle East, right now, my thoughts were drawn to the real possibility of this persecution and threat of death coming ever closer to me personally and to those I love. That is how I came to write this poem. I pray it will be a source of courage for Christians facing persecution either today or in the future.
CORRIE, STEPHEN AND PAUL
Will I muster courage to give my life for Him?
Thinking back to Corrie, she walked out on a limb!
Hiding Jews from Nazis, she saved hundreds of lives.
Her family was involved, and some of them would die.
Her sister whom she loved taught Corrie to forgive,
When Betsy died, Corrie’s heart with bitterness did not fill.
God behind the scenes was working in that place,
And Corrie was released – a clerical error, by His grace!
The concentration camp was where her sister had a vision:
Survivors gaining health till from the ashes they had risen!
Another story gives me hope to make a sacrifice,
To give my life like Stephen – for his Lord he paid a price.
The angry crowd gnashed their teeth, killing him with stones,
But Stephen falling to the ground, his face with glory shone!
Heaven opened wide, and he saw Jesus standing up
To welcome him with outstretched arms, to give His man a hug!
Saul was looking on and couldn’t shake it from his mind,
That Stephen had gone on to heaven, leaving him behind!
Saul had labored hard to please Eloheynu, our God:
He dragged the Christians off to death, but God his conscience prod.
Appearing to him on the road, in Hebrew Jesus spoke,
Revealed to Saul just how He felt and how His heart broke.
Saul had seen a Christian stoned, a smile upon his face –
Stephen’s death had changed Paul’s life, and God will give me grace,
If ever I must stand for Him and face a Muslim’s sword,
I know my Lord will strengthen me, His Spirit on me poured.
His love will fill my heart and soul – like Stephen I will say,
“Forgive them, Lord,” and I will be in Paradise that day!
Corrie was released. By stoning Stephen died.
Paul was beheaded with Jesus by his side.
“Pray for deliverance, whichever it will be,
But rest assured, My child, and know that you will be with Me!”
By Nancy Petrey – July 10, 2015
Friday, July 3, 2015
GROUND ZERO - ST. PAUL'S CHAPEL - SYCAMORE TREE SAVED THE CHURCH!
The first President of the United States, George Washington, was inaugurated on April 30, 1789, in New York City. Washington, D.C. was not in existence at the time. New York City was the capital of the nation at the beginning. This was the day America officially became a nation with a Constitution, Congressmen, and a President. That morning bells rang in New York City for 30 minutes. People were to “go up to the house of God to commit the new government to the “holy protection and blessing of the Most High.” George Washington took the oath of office and gave the inaugural address in Federal Hall on Wall Street. That afternoon he led members of the House and Senate on foot to ST. PAUL'S CHAPEL to pray and dedicate the nation to God. In his speech earlier, he said, “The propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself hath ordained.” This was a prophetic warning, and, sadly, it was fulfilled when terrorists flew two planes into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City on September 11, 2001.
In his book, The Harbinger, Rabbi Jonathan Cahn writes about a revelation he received from God, based on Isaiah 9:10 – “The bricks have fallen down, but we will rebuild with dressed stone; the sycamores are cut down, but we will replace them with cedars.” These were words of defiance spoken by the leaders of Israel (the northern kingdom with the capital in Samaria) when they were first attacked by Assyria. Instead of repenting for their idolatry that brought on the attack, they uttered these arrogant words. Cahn saw nine prophetic signs warning of national judgment that Israel did not heed and, subsequently, were destroyed ten years later and the people taken captive by Assyria in 722 B.C. Now, Cahn says, these same nine warnings, “harbingers,” are reappearing on American soil.
For instance, the day after 9/11, Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, spoke to a joint session of Congress, making a resolution. This was the first official response to the terrorist attack. He ended his speech with these words: “I know that there is only the smallest measure of inspiration that can be taken from this devastation, but there is a passage in the Bible from Isaiah that I think speaks to all of us at times like this.” Then he quoted Isaiah 9:10, essentially words of defiance instead of repentance! How remarkable that Daschle found this obscure verse to quote in this important speech! He was unwittingly pronouncing judgment on America! The preceding verses were ignored: “The Lord sent a word against Jacob, and it has fallen on Israel. All the people will know – Ephraim [Israel] and the inhabitant of Samaria – who SAY IN PRIDE AND ARROGANCE OF HEART:” (Isa. 9: 8-9). Following the vow, God says, “Therefore, the Lord shall set up adversaries … against him and spur his enemies on … and they shall devour Israel with an open mouth …” (Isa. 9: 11-12). The defiant vow, then judgment!
It is even more amazing that the same arrogant statement of Isaiah 9:10 was uttered again by a national leader, Sen. John Edwards, on September 11, 2004, the third anniversary of 9/11! He was speaking at the Congressional Black Caucus Prayer Breakfast in his campaign for Vice President. Out of 30,000 verses in the Bible, Edwards chose that verse on which he built his whole speech! Like Daschle, he was unknowingly making a prophecy of judgment on America, repeating Israel’s ancient vow! This utterance by a national leader would be repeated again by President Barack Obama in his first address to the joint session of Congress on February 24, 2009, giving an answer to the greatest crisis since 9/11, the stock market crash of 2008. He said, “… tonight I want every American to know this – WE WILL REBUILD.” What about repentance?
Jonathan Cahn points out in his book that on the very ground where our nation was consecrated to God in 1789 at St. Paul’s Chapel, God brought judgment. On September 11, 2001, the chapel was at the corner of GROUND ZERO! He compares it to King Solomon’s dedication of the Temple to God many years before it was destroyed in 586 B.C. The ground of consecration becomes the ground of judgment when a nation turns its back on God. The chapel was the ONLY building at Ground Zero that was spared! And guess what! The chapel was shielded and saved by a SYCAMORE TREE! Remember the Isaiah 9:10 vow – “the sycamores are cut down.” The next part of the verse has also been fulfilled – “… but we will replace them with cedars.” First the fallen sycamore was taken from the place of its fall and put on public display as a symbol of the calamity. The root system was also removed. A bronze structure of the roots was made and set up at the end of Wall Street in the courtyard of the old church, and unveiled on September 11, 2005. The creator thought it was a symbol of HOPE, but it was really a sign of judgment. In late November of 2003, a cedar tree was brought by crane and guided down to the appointed spot, all in fulfillment of the ancient vow of Isaiah 9:10!
Jonathan Cahn’s book is riveting! The history of Wall Street is given, and as I read, my jaw continued to drop further down. None of these things are accidents or coincidences. A merchants association met under a buttonwood tree on Wall Street in May 17, 1792, and signed the “Buttonwood Agreement,” which became known as the New York Stock Exchange. Can you believe that the buttonwood tree is a SYCAMORE TREE! The twin towers of the World Trade Center were a symbol of America’s financial power, but the sycamore tree was a symbol of America’s origin and a foreshadowing of the U.S. financial collapse seven years later on September 11, 2008! A living sycamore signifies the rise of America as the world’s preeminent financial power, but an uprooted sycamore signifies its fall.
A bronze statue of George Washington, our nation’s first President, stands on Wall Street in front of the New York Stock Exchange. He is a silent witness of the coming economic collapse America may see at the end of the Shemitah on September 13th. Jonathan Cahn says that the purpose of his book, The Harbinger, is not to condemn America to judgment but to save her. Redemption comes through calamity. St. Paul’s Chapel was the place that Americans ran to on 9/11 to pray. Indeed, churches all over the country filled with people, seeking God in prayer for our nation. Unfortunately, this did not continue, and now the state of our nation is worse than ever. As a watchman, I have written this to give warning. Turn back to God! Seek His face! “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and forgive their sin and heal their land” (II Chron. 7:14).
Blood moons, solar eclipse, the Bethlehem Star – we have been watching the skies lately, haven’t we? Four blood moons this year of the “Shemitah” (sabbatical or 7th year – Lev. 25:4) have really gotten our attention, and for good reason. Yes, we should WATCH. Scripture is filled with omens in the sky. On the fourth day of Creation, God created the sun, moon, and stars, saying they were for “SIGNS and seasons” (Gen. 1:14). What is the sign of the black sun (solar eclipse)? There will be a partial solar eclipse on September 13th this year, the last day of the Shemitah. (It will not be visible in our area, however.) And what is the sign of the fourth blood moon (lunar eclipse) on September 28th, the beginning of the Feast of Tabernacles in Israel? This is the only one of the four that Israelis can view.
As for the Bethlehem Star, we know that the birth of Jesus was signaled by a star that the wise men from the East followed right to Bethlehem. Thousands of years before the birth of Jesus, a prophet said, “I see Him, but not now; I behold Him, but not near; a Star shall come out of Jacob; a Scepter shall rise out of Israel …” (Num. 24: 17). The second part of the prophecy, “a Scepter,” indicating a Ruler, will be fulfilled at His second coming. Maybe, just maybe, the sign of His second coming will be another star! Jesus did say there would be a solar eclipse, a lunar eclipse, stars falling, the heavens shaking, and “Then the SIGN of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory …” (Matt. 24: 29-31 – read all of it). The lightning from one end of heaven to the other will truly be spectacular! (Luke 17:24).
Now let’s consider the black suns and blood moons. “The ancient Jewish sages taught that “when the sun is in eclipse it is a bad omen for the world (those who worship idols) … when there is an eclipse of the moon it is a bad omen for Israel, since Israel reckons time by the moon and those who worship idols by the sun” (the Babylonian Talmud Sukkah 29a). There will be a partial solar eclipse on September 13, 2015. It will not be visible in our area, but could it be a bad omen for nations outside Israel? On the Jewish calendar the date is Elul 29, which is the last day of the Shemitah, the seventh year Sabbath: “At the end of every seven years you shall grant a release of debts. And this is the form of the release: Every creditor who has lent anything to his neighbor shall release it; he shall not require it of his neighbor or his brother, because it is called the Lord’s release” (Deut. 15:1-2). In Hebrew it is called the Lord’s “Shemitah.” This Shemitah year began on September 24, 2014, and concludes on September 13, 2015.
I think America could possibly have a financial collapse on September 13th. Why do I think that? There are two good reasons in our recent history. At the conclusion of the Shemitah of 2001-2001, terrorists struck the twin towers of the World Trade Center, and this led to the greatest stock market point crash in the history of America! It wiped out debts and credits! This last day of “the Lord’s Shemitah” was a JUDGMENT ON THE USA! On September 11, 2001, the New York Stock Exchange was forced to close down. This was on a Tuesday. When the NYSE opened back up on Monday, September 17th, it so happened to be Elul 29, and Wall Street collapsed!
This scenario happened again! It was on the seventh anniversary of 9/11, on the last day of the next Shemitah year, Elul 29, the “day of nullification” which was September 29, 2008. That morning the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange refused to ring! “Observers took it as an omen. What followed the omen would surpass even the crash of 2001. … It was the greatest stock market point crash in American history. … The greatest financial collapse in American and world history took place on the very day given in the Bible to wipe away the financial accounts of a nation. … It just happened to occur on the exact appointed day and down to the exact appointed hours in which the cancellation of financial accounts had to be accomplished.”
Recently, I have been re-reading Rabbi Jonathan Cahn’s two books, The Harbingerand The Mystery of the Shemitah. I take my job as a “watchman” seriously! It is obvious that the United States of America is going down, down, down, and I feel an urgency to warn people to prepare for what may be coming. All Christians must watch and pray. God has specific things He wants each of us to do. Perhaps our downward slide can be reversed!
Yes, we can watch the skies for signs from God, but, most of all, we need to watch in prayer. Remember, Jesus chided the disciples for not watching even one hour when He was going through the greatest trial of His earthly life in the Garden of Gethsemane. He said, “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak” (Matt. 26: 38-41). He is saying to be vigilant, stay awake! Also, Jesus warned about the awful consequences of NOT watching in the end times preceding His coming: “Behold, I am coming as a thief. Blessed is he who watches, and keeps his garments, lest he walk naked and they see his shame” (Rev. 16:15).
Tomorrow, Americans will be celebrating the Fourth of July, Independence Day, but I am not excited about it this year due to the recent Supreme Court ruling, legalizing same-sex marriage. I plan to write a blog, drawing from Jonathan Cahn’s book, The Harbinger. He shows nine harbingers or warnings of judgment from God revealed to him in the destruction of 9/11. I believe Cahn is a modern day prophet for America. He shows how the nine harbingers that appeared in ancient Israel are now manifesting in America. The book is full of American history, so interesting. The watchword is RETURN! There is still hope for America, but we must REPENT and turn to God. If you haven’t read this book, I urge you to get a copy immediately and read it! It will blow your mind! Meanwhile, watch and pray!