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Problems with Russia!

Prophecy Update: Russia and the Coming War

Early in 1977 a retired NATO general called together six of his collegues–including an admiral, an airman, an economist and a diplomat–to write a dramatized game-plan for the next world war. General John Hackett wrote, “The Third World War – The Untold Story.” I read this book in the early 1980’s and it was an intriguing study of the war fighting abilities of the NATO countries in conflict with the Soviet bloc nations. In the end the Americans lead the forces of the nations allied with them to victory. It might surprise you to learn that one of the problems that the Soviets faced was using conscripts who hated the Soviet Union. The KGB forces would line up behind the conscripts and force them into battle and they would shoot their own people if they retreated. In all of history, slave armies can never win battles against free armies.

Another British General has written a book about war with Russia. Consider this summary of the book: “The rapid rise in Russia’s power over the course of the last ten years has been matched by a stunning lack of international diplomacy on the part of its president, Vladimir Putin. One consequence of this, when combined with Europe’s rapidly shifting geopolitics, is that the West is on a possible path toward nuclear war. Former deputy commander of NATO General Sir Richard Shirreff speaks out about this very real peril in this call to arms, a novel that is a barely disguised version of the truth. In chilling prose, it warns allied powers and the world at large that we risk catastrophic nuclear conflict if we fail to contain Russia’s increasingly hostile actions.” To set up the fiction part of the book, Shirreff states in the forward that the West and NATO have not responded to the Russian aggression.

In 2008 Russia invaded into Georgia and the response from the West and Nato was nothing. Shirreff said of this, “So an initial Russian toe in the invasion waters had shown Putin what he could get away with; Hitler and the reoccupation of the Rhineland in 1936 came strongly to my mind, even as far back as 2008.” (pg. xx Preface) When Russia invaded and took back the Crimea in 2014 Shirreff said, “The annexation of Crimea and the President’s vow to reunite ‘Russian speakers’ in the former republics of the Soviet Union under the banner of Mother Russia, was little different from Hitler’s annexation of the Sudetenland in 1938.” (pg. xvi Preface)

The attitude of the Russians and Putin is summarized in this speech by Putin, “Russia and the Ukraine are ‘one nation’ and Kiev is the mother of Russian cities.’ Here is where the threat of war with Russia is greater today than any time in history. Russia is not a slave state anymore, their armed forces is full of people who believe in Mother Russia and the need to protect her borders. It is anathema to the Russians that their borders are protected by nations in NATO. Ukraine is not in NATO but the West made a mistake in 2008 to promise Ukraine membership in NATO. Putin invaded Georgia as a message to the west, don’t mess with our borders.

In 1994, after the fall of the Soviet Union, many nations broke off from the Soviet Union. Four of those nations are in grave danger of invasion today. Those four nations are Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, and Ukraine and Ukraine is currently at war with Russia. Slowly but surely, Ukraine has fallen to the Russians. The West has done nothing but shown pacifism that would embolden someone like Putin. 1994 was an important date for another reason; the ‘Budapest Memorandum’ was an agreement between America, Russia, and the British in which Ukraine agreed to give up its nuclear weapons in return for US and Russia guarantees of its territorial integrity. Shirreff said, “Russia had torn up the Budapest Memorandum and Obama had chosen to forget American promises.” In 2014 there was this article in the British paper Daily Mail that bears on this problem:

Revealed: The forgotten treaty which could drag the US and UK into WAR with Russia if Putin’s troops intervene in Ukraine

“Bill Clinton, John Major, Boris Yeltsin and Leonid Kuchma – the then-rulers of the USA, UK, Russia and Ukraine – agreed to the The Budapest Memorandum as part of the denuclearization of former Soviet republics after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Technically it means that if Russia has invaded Ukraine then it would be difficult for the US and Britain to avoid going to war.” This article goes on to explain how the West found a way to disregard the Memorandum and this pacifism started in spades. Ukraine made a big mistake, they should have never given up its nukes and Russia would not have invaded. The Baltic States are a different story though. They are NATO countries and the US is obligated to fight if Russia invades. Will we?

We broke the treaty with Ukraine and we are breaking our promises to the Baltic States. I hope that President Trump will not follow the pacifism of the Obama Administration. Vice President Pence went to Estonia on July 30th and it was encouraging. TALLINN, Estonia — “U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence on Monday strongly pledged America’s commitment to protecting NATO allies against attacks, including the Baltic states, which have anxiously watched a growing Russian military presence in the region.” Putin responded, “Russian President Vladimir Putin on Sunday ordered the U.S. to cut its embassy and consulate staff in Russia by 755 people.”
In spite of what President Trump is doing to stand against the Russians, the State department is against his focus on Europe. In 2015 there was a new foreign policy initiative by President Obama called the “Asia Pacific Pivot.” Shirreff said of this, “At that time there was a massive reduction in American forces stationed in Germany. How ironic it was that a month after Putin invaded Crimea the last American tanks left German soil after 69 years.” Shirreff goes on to catalogue the pacifism of the last 3 years that has emboldened Putin to move troops into position to fight, threatened American and British naval and air force troops with fly byes, and taken more land in Syria and replaced ISIS forces with Russian and Iranian forces. Russia has concluded that Britain, Germany, France, and the nations of the European Union have lost the resolve to fight. Has America lost her resolve? Certainly, Pres. Trump has not but our political and intellectual elites say that Trump is nuts and we do not need to rearm. Our nation is in grave danger of war.

Here are the facts: Putin has increased tension in the Middle East in order to spread more Muslims into Europe to destabilize Europe. 2014: 283,532, 2015: 1,822,260 2016: 381,307, and now according to NATO, Putin is weaponizing migration to undermine Europe, causing Libyans to go into Italy. Russia is moving more troops into Belarus, on the Israel border, and more to the Baltic states borders. Hungary, Moldavia, Greece, Bulgaria, Serbia, and Montenegro all have turned away from NATO and the European Union to ally with Russia. A Gallup poll in Greece showed that Greece chooses Russia over NATO. Russia is starting military war games. On Aug.10th the Economist reported that ‘Russia’s largest war game in Europe since the cold war alarms NATO.’ Yet Russia’s upcoming Zapad 2017 military exercises with 13,000 troops near the Baltic States’ borders in September may further strain relations. Russia reported 13,000 soldiers participating but they moved 100,000 troops into position for the war games. The Lithuanian President is so alarmed that she called for the US to move troops into her country. What did NATO and America do, we sent 1000 troops to each of the three Baltic States, what a joke. Consider this headline in a military magazine, ‘US Commander Warns NATO Couldn’t Repel Russian Baltic Invasion.’
NATO would currently be unable to protect the Baltics against a Russian attack, the commander of US ground forces in Europe, General Ben Hodges, said in a news report Wednesday. “Russia could take over the Baltic states faster than we would be able to defend them,” Hodges was quoted as saying in a German-language article by news weekly Die Zeit. He said they would fall in 36 to 60 hours! This is the most important fact: NATO has 31,500 troops defending Europe and Russia has 1,605,000 troops in position to invade!

This week Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel went to Russia to meet with Putin. Problem is that the Iranian and Russian troops are growing on the border of Israel. The more Israel accepts Russian troops there and only publicly worry about Iran and not Russian troops, the closer to the GOG MAGOG war we get! Netanyahu told Putin that they may act to stop Iran in Syria! “Iran is already well on its way to controlling Iraq, Yemen and to a large extent is already in practice in control of Lebanon,” Netanyahu told Putin. “We cannot forget for a single minute that Iran threatens every day to annihilate Israel,” Netanyahu said. “Israel opposes Iran’s continued entrenchment in Syria. We will be sure to defend ourselves with all means against this and any threat.” I doubt Putin has any desire to help Israel and is aligned with Iran. Israel will get no help from Putin! In fact, Putin may be GOG and is even now being drawn into a war with Israel.
Bible Prophecy does not happen at the whims of man. It happens on God’s time, and the Lord has brought Russia into Syria on the border with Israel. Aligned with Iran, Russia is not there because of geopolitics, it is because God is causing them to be there for His purpose of judging them!
Ezekiel 38:2, Thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold, I am against you, O Gog, prince of Rosh, Meshech and Tubal. 3 “I will turn you about and put hooks into your jaws, and I will bring you out, and all your army, horses and horsemen, all of them. 8 “After many days you will be summoned; in the latter years you will come into the land that is restored from the sword, 39:2 and I will turn you around, drive you on, take you up from the remotest parts of the north and bring you against the mountains of Israel.” It is clear that God is even now dragging Russia and Iran into Syria so that they can attack Israel. The appeasement of the West has emboldened Russia—pray that they will be restrained.

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Prophecy Updates

Psalm 103 Our Need to Praise!

Psalm 103: Blessing the LORD
When I post some of my Bible studies, I hope that you will take the time to read the Word and spend time alone with God. I go into depth at my church into these lessons. I can’t go into depth here but if you have questions, please write me at jmaggele@ashland.edu.

The next four Psalms are alike, they center on praise and blessing. Compare Ps.103:1, 104:1, 105:1, and 106:1? What do you observe? All praise and blessing is dependent on how big God’s work and ways impact the worshipper. Here is an outline explaining this truth:
• 1-5: Praise for God’s Work
• 6-10: Praise for God’s Ways
• 11-18: Praise for God’s Warm-Heartedness
• 19-22: Praise for God’s Word

David demonstrates for us how we should approach the Lord. Read vss.1-5 and note that David praises God for five things. God is personal; He is in relationship with His children because He loves His children. David begins his praise with God ‘who pardons all your iniquities.’ In Leviticus this word for pardon is translated ‘forgiveness’ because as a believer did sacrifices God fulfilled His word to forgive. Is.55:7 says, “Let the wicked forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts; And let him return to the LORD, And He will have compassion on him, And to our God, For He will abundantly pardon.” David also mentions God healing, redeeming, crowning, and satisfying us as His children. Lovingkindness is mentioned four times in the passage (vss.4, 8, 11, and 17)

In vss.6-10 God focuses on His ways. It is very important for us to read the Torah, the first five books of the Bible. The reason is given to us in vs.7 “He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the sons of Israel.” If you want to know what God is like, we need to not neglect the Old Testament. It is very hard for Christians in our day to read the Old Testament because there are some gaps between us and the text. Some of the gaps are historical, cultural, and the type of language used. All of these can be overcome. Most Christians only read the New Testament and have an unclear view of God because of it. Jesus knew and read from the OT all of the time. What does God focus on in vs.6-10? Does God get angry? When did He get angry? What promises does He give? It is clear in the scriptures that God gets angry, remember the flood, Sodom and Gomorrah, and the Exodus? It is important to work these things out because God is bringing days of vengeance on the earth in the near future.

In vss.11-18 God shows how warm hearted He is! A key verse is vs.12, “As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us.” When God forgives, He does not remember or bring it up again. God forgives and has great compassion on His children. From Abraham we have received a great covenant in which God forgives us His children. Each subsequent covenant has shown us the great forgiveness and love of God. It is topped off by the New Covenant and the payment for our sins in Jesus. As humans, we are frail and finite, but God’s lovingkindness is everlasting!

In vss.19-22 God shows us how important His Word is! The key verse for the whole Psalm is vs.19, “The LORD has established His throne in the heavens, And His sovereignty rules over all.” What is foundational to all doctrine and belief is the sovereignty of God over all things. The Word of God is about the works and ways of God. You cannot escape God’s sovereignty either in life or in the scriptures. God rules over all things and that includes the invisible world. In the invisible world are angels and God brings up His rule over the angels in this passage. They are mighty, they perform His Word! What angels do better than humans is obey His Word. Have you blesses the Lord over His angels today? He ends the Psalm with a strange phrase, ‘all you works of His in all places of His dominion.’ In other words, where in all of the creation has God not worked or reigned? When we bless the Lord in all of these things, we can be sure that the Lord is still in control and He still loves us!

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Prophecy Updates

What Time Is It?

Prophecy Update: Friday August 18, 2017

I am concerned that people are not paying attention to how God works in history. The general knee jerk reaction of many Christians is that God does not cause wars, weather, and hard times. They prefer to see those things as coming from Satan. I faced this head on when 9/11 happened in 2001. The sovereignty of God dictates that God is in charge of all that happens in history. Proverbs 16:4 says, The LORD has made everything for its own purpose, even the wicked for the day of evil.” Notice that the verse says, “The Lord made everything for its own purpose; Learn then this basic truth, that the Creator is absolutely Sovereign, executing His own will, performing His own pleasure, and considering nought but His own glory.” (A.W. Pink Sovereignty of God) God did not make the world and then withdraw so He has no part in the working of the creation. God is the designer and the sustainer of the creation. Hebrews 1:3 says that God is upholding all things by the word of His power. God controls the universe and the nations. Do you see that the nations are on a collision course with destiny?

Bill Koening wrote that the last eight and a half years have been terrible for America. He mentions these evils advanced in America from the Obama administration:
• The government ran roughshod over the U.S. Constitution.
• Undermined America’s Judicial System
• World’s number one promoter of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT)
• Celebrated Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage with a rainbow imaged on the White House
• Directed a destructive transformation of the U.S. military
• Lectured God-fearing Christians on how to behave
• A Muslim apologist and defender of Islam in America
• Passionate about Middle East refugees coming to America
• Expressed no emotion over Christians being persecuted for their faith
• Endangered Israel and U.S. Middle East allies by destabilizing the region
• U.S. Federal Debt will almost double to $20 trillion; Federal Reserve debt increased over $4 trillion; personal debt at record levels.

With these things in mind, the election of Donald Trump has thrown the advocates of Communism in our land into a demonic frenzy. When is the last time you saw the promotion of assassinating the president of the United States in the press and Hollywood? Newsweek had this headline in June, “Johnny Depp is Not the First Celebrity to Joke About Wanting Donald Trump Dead.” Madonna also threatened the president when she said, “Yes, I have thought an awful lot about blowing up the White House.” Snoop Dog shot a music video advocating the assassination of the president. Perhaps the most direct and shocking of the Trump assassination stories was that of the U.S. comedian Kathy Griffin who posed in a photoshoot holding a bloodied fake head that clearly depicted Trump. The New York City-based organization staged a modern interpretation of William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar in the city’s Central Park in May and June. The play sparked criticism for its depiction of the lead character in the style of Trump, replete with wild blond hair and an oversized red tie. As in Shakespeare’s original, Caesar is assassinated by his close ally Brutus and others in the performance. The University of Central Florida allowed the unregistered student group the Knights of Socialism to hold an event last month during which they encouraged kids to bash pinatas of Trump and other top Trump administration officials. Around the nine-minute mark of a video they posted, one boy asks if he can “kill Donald Trump.”
The Presidents worldview is polar opposite of the alt left. The alt left is made up of those who wish to destroy the constitution and remake America in their own image. Unfortunately for us, most of the media goes along with the alt left. What the alt left cannot stand is Jesus and His church. Those who tell the truth about what is happening are anathema to them. Thus, so much hate is coming through what they are saying and doing. Make no mistake, this is Satanic and our battle is not against flesh and blood, but against the world forces of darkness! This darkness extends from our country to communist North Korea and China.

Caroline Glick on Aug.11, 2017.
“The Clinton, Bush and Obama administrations all opted not to take concerted action against North Korea, instead embracing the easy road of appeasement. All three let the threat grow as they kicked the North Korean nuclear can down the road. They engaged in nuclear talks with Pyongyang that North Korea exploited to develop nuclear weapons and missile systems.” China has used the North Korean peninsula as their personal tool against the west. Now that nuclear war is a real possibility, people have fear in their hearts. Do not fear, Jesus has a great plan in all of this. Just as the North Korean deals were designed to prevent them from getting nuclear bombs and failed, so the Iran deal will also fail. Consider this headline:

Obama’s Iran Deal Sounds a Lot Like Clinton’s Failed North Korea Deal July 20, 2015 5:00 am Washington Free Beacon
“President Obama’s defense of his nuclear deal with Iran echoes President Bill Clinton’s defense of his disastrous nuclear deal with North Korea, the Free Beacon found.” In 1994, the Clinton administration tried to entice North Korea to forgo its nuclear program by giving it oil, nuclear energy technology, and sanctions relief. The deal collapsed after a decade when North Korea pocketed U.S. concessions and raced for the bomb. The hermit kingdom tested its first nuclear weapon in 2006 and has subsequently developed enough nuclear material for six bombs. Today, the Obama administration is trying to entice Iran to forgo its nuclear program by giving it nuclear technology, $100 to $150 billion in previously-frozen assets, and sanctions relief on its weapons trade, ballistic missile program, and top military commanders. The restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program begin to subside after eight years, leaving the Islamic republic with near-zero breakout time to construct a bomb when the deal ends.

When this was taking place in 2015 and 2016 I was resigned to the fact that Obama was going to be successful in his attempt to help Iran get the bomb. I fought against it, went to senators offices, went to Washington D.C. to lobby against it, and all the time knowing in my heart that my efforts were going to be fruitless. I thought this way because I know Bible prophecy. Iran needed to strengthen and America needed to weaken for the Ezekiel 38-39 prophecy to be fulfilled. The Washington Free Press article went on to say:

“Both Clinton and Obama claimed that their deals reduced the risk of nuclear proliferation, although Clinton’s deal ultimately led to further proliferation concerns. Since acquiring its nuclear arsenal, North Korea has exported nuclear secrets to other rogue regimes, including Iran and Syria.”

In a very direct way, then, Clinton’s rapprochement with North Korea has contributed to the crisis unfolding in Iran. Iran has used its up to 400 billion dollars to increase terrorism, troops to the border of Israel, to take more land in Iraq and Syria, and to dominate her neighbors.

America and Israel are spiritually connected. When America cursed Israel in this Iran deal, God started judging our country over this evil. We have not yet repented over the sins our country committed the last 5 years. I have been praying that this administration would renounce the Iran deal, declare Jerusalem the capital of Israel, move the embassy, and get rid of the Oberegfell decision which established gay marriage as law. Remember that the Obergefell decision was during the four Blood Moons—June 26, 2015. The Iran deal was July 14th 2015 during the Blood Moons. At the same time, Russia and Iran entered Syria and God set up the Gog Magog war.
The last solar eclipse in the USA was August 21, 1914. There also was a total solar eclipse over Turkey, the Ottoman Empire. As you know, this is when WW1 started and it destroyed the Ottoman Empire. This total solar eclipse is also Aug. 21st and that sends shivers down my spine. If I could say anything to the church and to the nation, repent. August 21 is also the first of Ellul on the biblical calendar. This eclipse is like a sign that the bridge is out—we need to start repenting or God’s judgment will get worse. This is what happened in Haggai 1:1-2, on the first of Ellul God warned the Jews, rebuild the temple. “Thus says the LORD of hosts, ‘This people says, “The time has not come, even the time for the house of the LORD to be rebuilt.” So God began to up the pressure on the Jews until they obeyed. Jesus spoke about signs in the heavens in Luke 21:25, “There will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth dismay among nations, in perplexity at the roaring of the sea and the waves.” Signs are for repenting. God is merciful and always give warnings.
Back to Iran and North Korea: The news is that North Korea is about to test another nuke and it is for Iran. Iran and North Korea have client states who have miniaturized Nukes that you can put on a ICBM. Both Iran and North Korea have tested and launched ICBM’s. This is dangerous for all of us and I have yet to see anyone outside of President Trump and Benjamin Netanyahu who has the courage to stand up to the threats. Our greatest need in the USA is not a strong leader but repentance. Europe is so weak but they are looking for a strong leader—they need repentance. From 1917 to 2017, God has been screaming to the nations to repent and we have not. This is why it is the time of the end times, the time of the spirit of the Anti-Christ.
When Jesus died on the cross, He gave two signs that are hard to neglect; An earthquake and an eclipse for 3 hours. What is the objective of the sign: repent and receive Jesus as Lord and Savior. (Matthew 27:45, 51-53) When the eclipse starts in America, it is at the very same moment of the sun setting in Jerusalem. The last eclipse to go across the whole nation was 1918 and we had a flu pandemic that killed 675,000 Americans. God help us!

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Prophecy Updates

Bible study Psalm 102

I have been studying the Psalms the last few years and I am amazed how the Lord communicates His love for Israel. The Psalmist in Ps.102 faces a personal and national struggle. He is a patriot who loves his nation and his personal problems are worsened because of what is happening to the nation. Today, our nation is in a civil war. As I mentioned in my book, there is a battle between those who want America to be a communist nation and those who want it to continue to live under the Judeo/Christian ethic and worldview. Many can care less and are clueless of the battle. Judge Roy Moore is running for the Senate in Alabama and he represents those who still see the Lord as the God of this nation. The people in Charlottesville Virginia, who rioted and fought each other represent those who want to take down this nation for a dictatorship or communism. I hope this Bible study will give you hope today that the Lord and His promises are still true. He can take us through the struggle of the nation!

Psalm 102: Personal Problem of a Patriot in light of Bible Prophecy

Intro: The historical background is not given in this Psalm but we know that the nation of Israel has experienced a tragedy. The personal tragedy is bound up in the national tragedy. Spurgeon wrote of this Psalm, “it is the patriots lament over his countries distress.” The Holy Spirit gave us a wonderful commentary of this Psalm in vs.18+22. This was written for future generations that would see the fight and the victory that Jesus would have over all of the nations of the world.

102:1-11: Sickness
The prayer in vs.1-2 focuses on the distress that he is feeling. Distress can be translated as enemy or adversary. Although the passage focuses on his personal struggle, the issue is where is the Lord? Read vs.10, what is the Lord doing? Each Christian needs to face the fact that the Lord of heaven and earth brings wrath to the earth and we get caught up in the turmoil.

102:12-17: Security in Faith
This guy turns from his grief and proclaims his faith! The day is coming when the Lord is turning everything around. This guy does not lose faith in what he was taught. Read Psalm 137:1-6? In vs.13 the Psalmist rehearses the promises of God, God has chosen Zion for His habitation and He will come back to her. All of the nations will serve the Lord in Jerusalem. Read Dan.9:16, what do you think of Daniels prayer? Also read I Kings 9:3, what did the Lord say of this city and temple? Has God kept His promise?

102:18-22: Security in Prophecy
This Psalm has been written for our generation. We are the generation that is seeing the reestablishment of Israel, Jerusalem, and the Temple. We are those like in vs.20 now because we see the nations resisting the will of the Lord. The persecution of Christians and Jews over the trust in the sovereignty of God for our day is spreading. In the midst of the persecution, people are operating out of faith; Faith that the nations will be gathered someday to praise the Lord in Jerusalem. In vs.12-22, Zion is mentioned three times and the nations of the world are mentioned four times. The nations will be gathered to Zion to worship and serve the Lord. The Lord gazed at the earth, which means that He regarded or paid attention. (Look up Ps.33:13, 80:14, 119:15, 18)

102:23-28: Servants who Trust

In vss.23-24 the Psalmist is back to lamenting his circumstances but the Holy Spirit was pleased to give us great hope. In vss.25-27 the Lord mentions the sovereignty of God over the creation. This passage is quoted in Hebrews 1:10-12 and reaffirms that Jesus is the creator. What do you learn from this passage? The earth mirrors the servant of God, we may wear out and die, but the Lord never wears out. Our hope is wrapped up in vs.28, we who are the children of the Lord will live on eternally with the Lord!