Sunday, October 26, 2014

TEXT: I THESSALONIANS 4:13-18
SUBJECT: JOYFUL ANTICIAPATION OF THE END TIMES, PART II
INTRODUCTION:

In our first message from this text, we preached on the “Great Family Reunion” that God has planned for the end of the age. This will be for all of those who are in Jesus—including those who have died or have “fallen asleep” in Him—and  will take place at the Rapture and Second Return of Jesus at the end of the Tribulation Period. The Great Shepherd of the Church inspired the Apostle Paul to use the tender phrase, “fallen asleep” when referring to those who had died, to make it clear that they were not dead, only sleeping! Consequently, on “That Day,” or “The Day,” of the Rapture and Second Coming of Jesus, those who have died and are now in Heaven with God will be returning back to the earth with Him to be reconciled with those in Christ who will be alive on the earth at that time.

It will be quite the event to say the least!

This is a day that the eternal God has been looking forward to for a long time, and He has been moving all things toward this day since the beginning. It will be the central focus of the Day of the Lord. To say that this event will leave the whole world at a loss for words would be the understatement of all time. This spectacular revelation that has been in God’s mind from the eternal past and was set in motion at the creation of the heavens and earth will leave all who witness it—including angels and demons—stunned at the greatness of God!

Just think of it, all of the saints—going back to Adam, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, David, Paul, Peter, John and every generation of believers up to that time, including our loved ones who have fallen asleep in Jesus—will be returning to this earth with the Son of God and the holy angels! Beloved, there will not have been anything like this since the moment that God spoke the universe into existence!

If you are saved and are glad that you will be a part of it, would you say a good amen?

So in our first message to you from this text, we focused on vv. 13-15 and the sheer joy of the hope that we have as believers in being reconciled with our loved ones when they are awakened from their sleep in Jesus.

In part two of this message, we will focus on the event itself and how God will bring it about. Again, it will be breathtaking! And if you will embrace it by faith, it will fill you with a joyful anticipation of the end times and set you free from fear and dread.

 I. Let’s begin with verse 16: “For the Lord Himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command (or shout), with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.”

This stunning event of Almighty God—the Rapture and Second Return of Jesus—will be revealed in three powerful ways:  (1).The loud command or shout of the Lord, (2).The voice of the archangel, and (3).The trumpet call of God.

(1). The Rapture and the Lord’s Second Return will begin with the loud command or shout of the Lord Jesus Himself.

A.) To help get a visual of how this amazing event will look, I want to take you back to the ascension of Jesus into heaven after His bodily resurrection from the dead and after His appearances to His disciples for over a period of forty days.
1. Acts 1:9-11, “After He said this, He was taken up before their eyes, and a cloud hid Him from their sight. They were looking up intently into the sky as He was going, when suddenly two men (angels) dressed in white stood beside them. Men of Galilee, they said, why do you stand here looking up into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen Him go into heaven.”

a.) Notice that the angels said, “This same Jesus” will return. That very simply means that the “same Jesus” who became a man through the virgin Mary; the “same Jesus” who gave His life on the cross to pay for our sins; the “same Jesus” who was raised from the dead with a physical body; and the “same Jesus” who appeared to His disciples for 40 days after He had been raised from the dead and who ascended into Heaven from the Mount of Olives in bodily form will also return back to the earth in bodily form—this “same Jesus!”
b.) And this “same Jesus” will return to the earth in the “same way” that you have seen Him go into Heaven. When Jesus returns, He will do so in physical and VISIBLE form—in the “same way” that he was taken up from the Mount of Olives. It will not BE HIDDEN OR DONE IN SECRET! Rather, it will all unfold in plain view for all the world to see—in real time.

Beloved, when the Lord Jesus splits the sky, it will be the most dynamic act of God that this world has ever witnessed!

The point that I am trying to convey here is that the Rapture and Second Return of the Lord will not be done in a corner or where no one can see it. God hasn’t waited this long for this moment only to hide it. No way!!!
This event will be the display of the raw power of the Almighty God! And that raw demonstration of God’s power, when Jesus descends from heaven, will begin with the loud command or shout of the Lord.

The question is this: what is the loud command or shout of the Lord?

Before I offer an answer to that question, I do so with this caveat: no one can fully comprehend what it will be like to hear this loud command or shout of the Lord since no one has ever experienced it. Just as no human being can describe that first grandeur moment of creation when God brought the universe into existence, so too can no one describe the moment when the Lord descends into our atmosphere with a loud command or shout.

With that said, according to the Greek word translated “loud command,” or “shout” (keleusmati), the meaning here is associated with a victorious King riding into battle with his army. As the Lord Jesus, along with those who have fallen asleep and with the angel army, leaves the third heaven and breaks into the material heavens—into our air on terra-firma—He will give the loud command or shout of the King of Kings! It will be a shout that will shake both the heavens and the earth. And it will be the Divine announcement to all of those on the earth that everything is about to change, FOREVER!

The Holy Spirit gave John a glimpse of this staggering truth in Revelation 19:11-16 “I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called faithful and true. With justice he judges and makes war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on His head are many crowns. He has a name written on Him that no one knows but He Himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and His Name is the Word of God. The armies of heaven were following Him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Out of His mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike the nations. He will rule them with an iron scepter. He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty. On His robe and His thigh He has a name written: King of Kings and Lord of Lords.”

This incredible and supernatural scene unfolds first with the loud command and shout of the Lord as He breaks into our atmosphere for the first time since He ascended from the Mount of Olives. Not to be overly simplistic, but it will truly be “the shout heard around the world!”

“When Christ shall come with shout of acclamation
And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart
Then I shall bow in humble adoration
And there proclaim, my God, how great thou art.”
(2). The second way that the Rapture and Second Return of the Lord will unfold will be with the voice of the archangel.

As with the last point about the loud command or shout of the Lord, no one can define what the “voice of the archangel” will actually sound like. Nor does the Bible indicate which archangel it will be, Michael or Gabriel.

But the real point is this: at this momentous event of the Rapture and Second Return of the Lord, it is only fitting that the highest in the angelic hierarchy should be present and involved. So along with the shout of the Lord, this mighty archangel adds his voice to this heart-stopping revelation of God’s Son!

I’ve never heard an archangel’s voice, but I will on that day. As with the loud command or shout of the Lord, I look forward with joyful anticipation to that mighty sound from the archangel at the end of this age announcing the Rapture and Second Return of the Lord.

(3).The third way in which the Rapture and Second Return of the Lord will unfold will be with the “trumpet call of God.”

There is little doubt in my mind that the Rapture and Return of the Lord will happen on the Feast of Trumpets. Just as sure as Jesus fulfilled the first four Feasts of God to the very day, 1.Unleavened Bread, 2.Passover, 3. First Fruits, and 4. Pentecost, He will fulfill the last three of God’s seven Feasts to the very day—5.Feast of Trumpets, 6.Day of Atonement, 7. Feast of Tabernacles.

The Lord will fulfill the Feast of Trumpets at the Rapture and Second Return. Ten days later on the Day of Atonement He will save the Remnant of Israel from the Antichrist, and five days later He will commence the Feast of Tabernacles which will lead into the Millennial Reign of Jesus over all the earth. (For a more comprehensive explanation of the Seven Feasts of God, please visit my blog: warriorprophet.blogspot.com and reference my post from February 23, 2012 “The Seven Prophetic Feasts of God.”) There can only be one fulfillment of the Feast of Trumpets as it is with the other Feasts of God. Therefore, the Rapture and the Second Return of the Lord occur at the same time—at the end of the Tribulation period! (See Matthew 24:15-31 for the timing of this event)

Along with the loud command or shout of the Lord and the voice of the archangel being that of a victorious King and His heavenly army, the sounding of the trumpet call of God—in keeping with the meaning of the Feast of Trumpets—is God announcing to the world to prepare for judgment. [1]

However, if the sounding of the trumpet means judgment for a rebellious and unbelieving world, it is for the Church the announcement of God gathering the faithful in Christ to be rewarded and blessed because of His Divine mercy! I will more fully develop the timing and meaning of the Rapture and Second Return in subsequent messages, but for our purposes in this message I will close with what is revealed in vv. 16-18

When the Lord Jesus comes from the third heaven (a dimension that we as yet have not experienced) with those who have fallen asleep in Him and with the holy angels, as He enters our physical heavens with a loud command or shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, something spectacular is going to happen for all of those who are true believers in Jesus.

First, “the dead in Christ will rise first” (v.16). As our text says, God will bring with Jesus all of those who are in spirit form and will raise up their new and glorified bodies to be united with their spirits! This all will happen with the shout of the Lord, the voice of the archangel and the trumpet call of God. God’s great power will accomplish this amazing event!

Although this will happen “in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye,”(see further I Corinthians 15:51-52) I believe that their ascent into the sky will be slow and very VISIBLE just like the ascent of Jesus from the Mount of Olives (Acts 1:9-11).

Secondly, v.17 “After that, (the dead in Christ having been raptured) we who are alive and are left will be caught up together with them to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.”

Once the dead in Christ are raptured up, then those believers who are still alive will also be raptured up to meet them and the Lord in the air or sky above the earth.

What a scene! What a spectacular event! Again, not since God created the universe has there been anything close to this! Beloved this is THE DAY OF DAYS!

And the call of the Spirit today is that we would be stunned with the anticipated beauty, hope and glory of the Rapture and Second Coming of Jesus at the end of the age! God wants us to be overwhelmed with what He has planned for us in the end times. The Lord desires that we embrace the events of the end times with joyful anticipation.

So once again Church, the end times are not the end for those who are in Jesus. Rather, what will be the end for the rebellious and unbelieving world will truly only be the BEGINNING for those who are in Christ Jesus the Messiah.

It is for that reason that the Apostle Paul can say to the Thessalonian Church and to us today: “Therefore, encourage each other with these words.”

ALTAR AND PRAYER

Father-God, as we enter into these last days, we ask that you would pour into us the stunning revelation of the Rapture and Second Return of Jesus. Help us to focus on what the shout of the Lord, the voice of the archangel, and the trumpet call of God will mean to all of those who are in Christ Jesus—eternal reward, blessing and glory!



 Please see for a full explanation: [1] http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/books/festivals_2/2.html

Sunday, October 19, 2014

TEXT: I THESSALONIANS 4:13-18
SUBJECT: Joyful Anticipation of the End Times
INTRODUCTION:

Recently, someone told me about a couple of ladies that they were talking with about the Blood Moons.[1] One of the ladies was excited and wanted to hear more. But the other lady had the opposite reaction. She said that this kind of talk made her afraid and fearful. And I believe that those two responses are typical of how many people view the end times. Some are very excited about what is coming, but many are fearful about the future. And of course, there are those who are completely unaware or are oblivious to the times in which we are living—at least for now. I believe that will change as events continue to unfold!

My desire as a pastor, with a prophetic gift, is to move you squarely and confidently into the people-group who are excited about the end times. I want you to have a joyous attitude of expectation and anticipation about what is coming in the future, and not one of fear or dread. And the best way that I can accomplish that is by giving you Biblical knowledge about what God’s Word says will take place in the coming days. When you know the truth about what’s coming in the end times, then you will be free from fear. As the scripture says, “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”[2] In this case, that will mean being set free from fear. When you begin to really grasp what God has planned for the future, you will be able to move into the coming days in faith and in victory.

In the coming weeks, I am going to preach and teach on four scriptures[3] that reveal God’s end time plan which is centered in the Rapture and Second Return of Jesus Christ. As we lay out these scriptures for you, two things will emerge. First will be the timing of the Rapture and Second Return; secondly, and equally important, will be what the Rapture and Second Return of the Lord will mean for the Church.

As we move forward, allow me to encourage you to pray for a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of God so that you will be a person who is moving into the end times with joyful anticipation and not in fear. For this is God’s will for you.


I. The first scripture that we will begin with in our study is I Thessalonians 4:13-18:

1 Thess 4:13-18

13 Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. 14 We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 15 According to the Lord's own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.18 Therefore encourage each other with these words.

(1). The first reason why you can be excited and have a joyous anticipation of the end times is because it will be the happiest family reunion of all times!
a.) The Apostle Paul included this truth in his letter to the Thessalonians because fellow believers had died and those who were still alive were concerned about what had happened to them. Where were they? Did their death mean that they would miss out on what God had planned for the future? Paul took away their fears and concerns by sharing with them the revelation that he had received from the Lord Jesus Himself.[4]
1.) First of all, notice the tender words of the Great Shepherd of the Church as He speaks through the Apostle about those who had died: “Brothers, I do not want you to be ignorant about those who have “fallen asleep.” He referred to those who had died as having simply  “fallen asleep.” And we all know what happens when someone is asleep: They will wake up! And when they wake up, then we will be able to once again talk with them, be with them and enjoy being with them. What an amazing thought: One day in the future, according to the revelation of the Word of God, we will once again see and know our loved ones who have awakened from having “falling asleep” in Jesus!

Beloved, does this truth encourage you? Inspire you? Excite you? Cause you joyful anticipation? I can almost feel my Dad’s hand on the back of my neck and hear him saying, “It’s going to be okay bud.” And I can envision me and my Momma dancing around the room like we did so many times before she fell asleep in Jesus. Dear Church, no matter what may come in the future days, you can rest assured that at the end will come the happiest family reunion of all times for all of those who have “fallen asleep” in Jesus!

Illustration: I can remember as a boy how much I enjoyed waking up on a Saturday morning after a good long sleep. There was Dad, Mom, my grandmother (who lived with us), and my brother and sister. That little four room house that we lived in was so full of amazing joy because we all had and loved each other. How much more and greater and happier will be that great family reunion day when all of those who have fallen asleep in Jesus are reunited with those who are alive and remain at the coming of the Lord?

WHAT A DAY THAT WILL BE! IS NOT THE FUTURE LOOKING BETTER AND BRIGHTER ALREADY?
SHOULD WE NOT, AS CHRISTIANS, BE EXCITED ABOUT THE COMING DAYS? NOT FEARFUL, BUT FULL OF FAITH AND JOYFUL ANTICIPATION FOR THAT GREAT AND HAPPIEST OF ALL FAMILY REUNION DAYS!

IF YOU CAN ANSWER YES, WOULD YOU SAY A GOOD AMEN?[5]

2.) In verse 14, Paul goes on to say, “we believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in Him.”

As proof of life after death, Paul refers to the death and resurrection of Jesus. And what an amazing and comforting truth to those Thessalonians who were wondering about loved ones who had died or had “fallen asleep.” Paul powerfully connects the two together when he says in verse 14, “we believe that Jesus died and rose again, AND SO, (based on His death and resurrection from the dead) we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in Him.” Paul is telling the Thessalonians, and subsequently us too, that just as sure as Jesus is alive after death, so too are your loved ones who have fallen asleep in Jesus.

Beloved, your hope of being reunited with your loved ones who have fallen asleep in Jesus is not based on anything less than the historical, physical resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. The hope, our hope of life after death, is not just wishful thinking. A thousand times no! Quite the contrary, it is rooted and grounded in the central truth of scripture: The resurrection of the Son of God from the dead! And I have been to the tomb; it’s still empty!

Up from the grave He arose, with a mighty triumph o’er His foes
He arose a victor from the dark domain
And He lives forever with His saints to reign
He arose, He arose, hallelujah Christ arose!

Fearful of the future? No way! Rather, joyfully anticipating the future!

3.) With the death and resurrection of Jesus from the dead as proof of life for all of those who have fallen asleep in Jesus, Paul adds this thought in verse 14, “. . .we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in Him.”

In the last part of this verse that we just read, Paul is giving us the first link to the Rapture and Second Return of the Lord which we will look in our next message. He says, “. . . God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in Him.” Jesus is coming back to this earth again, and He is not coming alone.

You say, I know Pastor; He is coming with the angels. Yes, that’s true. But also coming back with Him, at His Second Return to the earth, will be those who have fallen asleep in Him! He is bringing them “with Him” the scripture says.

Did you get that Beloved? When Jesus comes back to this planet the second time, He is bringing my Dad and Mom with Him; my grandparents and my little brother who fell asleep in Jesus when he was only two weeks old.  And He is bringing back your loved ones who are now with Him in Heaven.

It doesn’t get any more real or exciting than that! So how then should we be living as we enter into the last days? Fearful of the end of this age? Afraid of the end times? Anxious about the future?

Are you kidding me? Afraid of seeing the face of the King of Glory? Afraid of being reconciled with loved ones who have been asleep for such a long while? Afraid of the happiest family reunion of all times?

Beloved, it should be just the opposite for those who are in Jesus! We have everything to look forward to. We should be filled with joyful anticipation as we see THE DAY approaching.  It is no cliché when we say, “for those who are in Jesus, the best is yet to come!”

Therefore, when we see or hear about the Blood Moons, or the Shemitah[6], or ISIS or Vladimir Putin, we should be excited and full of joyful anticipation because these are signs that we are getting closer to the Great Day of God and all the amazing promises that will become reality for the Church! And one of those promises is the happiest reunion day of all time!

Consequently, if you are not excited about the end times and the future, it may mean that you need to make sure that you are right with God.

You need to make sure that you are ready for the end times by being born again, by putting your faith in Jesus Christ who died, rose again, and is coming back to this earth.

CONCLUSION

The end times are not the end for those who are in Jesus as we have seen from I Thessalonians 4. Rather, for those who are in Jesus, the end times literally mean a new beginning! And a major part of that new beginning will be the happiest family reunion of all times! It will be the reuniting with all of those who have fallen asleep in Jesus. So the end times mean, for those who are in Jesus, that the best is truly yet to come!

Beloved, let’s make sure that in these last days that we are living in that we are the kind of witnesses who are filled with such joyful anticipation of what is yet to come, our testimony and our lives will be irresistible in drawing others to Christ!

PRAYER

O LORD, PLEASE LET THE REVELATION OF THE PROMISE OF THE GREAT FAMILY REUNION AT THE RAPTURE AND SECOND COMING OF JESUS BECOME WHO WE ARE IN THESE EXCITING DAYS IN WHICH WE ARE LIVING!
IN JESUS NAME, AMEN!

FOOTNOTES





[1] Blood Moons have occurred with regard to significant events in the history of Israel. For more information, visit my blog: warriorprophet.blogspot.com and reference the post from October 2, 2013, “A Prophetic Event Is on the Horizon.”
[2] John 8:32
[3] I Thessalonians 4:13-18; I Corinthians 15:50-55; Matthew 24:15-31; Revelation 20:1-6
[4] I Thessalonians 4:15 “According to the Lord’s own Word. . .”
[5] If you have unsaved family members, God will one day wipe away all your tears. (See Revelation 21:4)
[6] Please reference: http://www.wnd.com/2014/10/shemitahs-first-2-weeks-bring-ominous-signs/

Monday, September 15, 2014


 

 I felt the need to post this prophetic  word from October 5, 2009. What was prophesied about the shakeup in the House of Representatives has already happened. It happened in 2010. 

October 5, 2009 (Warrior Assembly of God, Warrior, Alabama)

 

At our men’s prayer meeting on October 5, 2009, the Holy Spirit gave us a very definite word concerning the city of San Francisco, California. The meeting began with the Spirit telling us that He was soon to act in a very significant way in the earth. A brother present then said that he saw himself looking across the Golden Gate Bridge, not really knowing what that meant. I then remembered what my wife had told me that she had seen on Sunday morning during worship. She said that she saw an angel flying through the sky releasing fire. Immediately, having related that to the men, I saw an angel standing at the Golden Gate Bridge with a drawn sword. I knew that this meant judgment!

 The word that the Lord spoke to me next is direct and may not be received by very many, even those in the Body of Christ. However, I must speak it nonetheless. I saw a cup, and it was almost full. I knew in the spirit that this was the cup of iniquity in the city of San Francisco. The Spirit said that the cup of iniquity is almost full in this city and judgment is soon to come. This judgment is necessary, because the evil in this city is like a cancer on America, and it must be removed. San Francisco is a portal, and through it every kind of foul, demonic spirit is being released into our country. Consequently, this

evil must be excised. I know that there are many more cities which are extremely wicked, but San Francisco is where judgment will begin.

 How will this judgment come? I don’t know exactly, but I did see fire rising up from the ground. Will it be some sort of terrorist attack, or will it be a colossal earthquake? I am not sure, but I have the sense that it will be an earthquake. However it may come, the Spirit impressed upon me that this judgment would be very, very decisive and destructive. To put it in simple terms, the judgment coming to San Francisco is going to be bad, really bad, and will include a lot of collateral damage. I’ll say more about that a bit later.

I then saw Nancy Pelosi, who is a House Member representing the city of San Francisco in Washington. She also is the Speaker of the House, meaning that she has been entrusted with a great deal of authority. In this vision or spiritual impression, Speaker Pelosi was walking away from me, yet looking back. Her face was grim. The whole scene began to shake, including Speaker Pelosi. It was evident that the Lord was saying that not only will San Francisco be shaken but that there would also be a shakeup of power in the House of Representatives. You can draw your own conclusions as to all that may mean. At that point, we felt impressed to pray for the will of God to be done concerning Speaker Pelosi.

After the Spirit revealed His heart to us concerning this coming judgment, we then felt impressed to intercede.  Listed below is how the Spirit led our intercession:

 

 1. Intercession that God would awaken and speak to the believers in that city to be delivered from the coming judgment. Even as Abraham interceded concerning Sodom and Gomorrah, the Lord sent an angel to lead Lot and his family out of that place. So likewise, may angels be sent to deliver the believers in San Francisco.

2.  Secondly we interceded, that in judgment God would remember mercy--the very thing He is eager to do.  We prayed that the collateral damage would be minimized as much as is possible.

3. Third, our intercession led us to pray that after this judgment has come, the Christian leaders who will be given a platform to speak will not acquiesce and be passive and misleading as to what has occurred. We prayed that they would have the courage to speak the truth in love. What is going to happen in San Francisco will be unequivocally the judgment of God and it must not be explained otherwise. To do so will only bring more judgment on our country.

4. Fourth, we then prayed that the result of this judgment will be repentance. Our prayer is, like that of an aftershock from an earthquake, repentance will reverberate from West to East and South to North. And by this repentance America will be turned back to God. Truly this could be the impetus for the Third Great Awakening in this country! This intercession, we believe, is crucial. If America refuses to genuinely repent and turn back to God, then there will be another judgment, and another and another, until we repent!

 

 What will happen in the city of San Francisco will not be by the hand of man. It will be the hand of God. This judgment is absolutely necessary or it would not happen. God does not delight in the death of the wicked, He never has. But in order for Him to fulfill His will in America, judgment must come. God loves this country, and He is not finished with her yet. It’s not "God damn America" as some Chicago preacher has said, rather it is God bless America. Yet, this blessing cannot come without judgment.

I ask you to join me in the spirit of intercession listed above. Although God’s judgment will come, it can result in our country turning back to God if we will pray. What is at stake is the future of this great country. America will not be saved by the hands of politicians; it is too late for that. Our future and the future of our children and grandchildren will be determined by the faithfulness of a praying church. So I ask you dear watchmen, please take your place on the wall and let’s intercede according to God’s will. If we pray, we will be victorious.

Friday, November 22, 2013


Revelation 12:1-6; 13-17 A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head. She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth. Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on its heads. Its tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that it might devour her child the moment he was born. She gave birth to a son, a male child, who “will rule all the nations with an iron scepter.” And her child was snatched up to God and to his throne. The woman fled into the wilderness to a place prepared for her by God, where she might be taken care of for 1,260 days. 13 When the dragon saw that he had been hurled to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. 14 The woman was given the two wings of a great eagle, so that she might fly to the place prepared for her in the wilderness, where she would be taken care of for a time, times and half a time, out of the serpent’s reach. 15 Then from his mouth the serpent spewed water like a river, to overtake the woman and sweep her away with the torrent. 16 But the earth helped the woman by opening its mouth and swallowing the river that the dragon had spewed out of his mouth. 17 Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to wage war against the rest of her offspring—those who keep God’s commands and hold fast their testimony about Jesus.

In the following of only 820 words, I will give you a very simple paradigm of how to interpret the things that have happened, the things that are happening now, and the things that will happen in the future. If you please, it is the big picture of what is really going on behind what is being played out in the natural world. In order to understand it better, think of what happens at a puppet show. What everyone sees are the puppets, but as we all know, the reality is the personalities behind the puppets! What is written in the above scripture is the reality of what has happened in our world, what is happening in our world, and what will happen in our world! It is imperative to understand this truth if you are going to be victorious in the days that are ahead.

The “Red Dragon” is the devil; “the woman” is the nation of Israel; and “the woman’s offspring” is the Church. The question that must be asked is this: why does the devil desire to destroy Israel and the Church? For one reason: to keep himself from being judged and banished forever (Revelation 20:1-10). Let me say this in the simplest terms possible. THE ANSWER is found in two scriptures. The first is Matthew 23:39, “For I (Jesus) tell you, you (Jewish leadership) will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’” The devil hates Israel and has tried and will try to annihilate them so that this scripture cannot be fulfilled. If there is no nation of Israel then Jesus cannot be welcomed back; and if Jesus does not return, then God is liar and the devil wins and will not be banished. This is why the devil worked so violently and maliciously through Hitler and Nazism in attempting to destroy the Jews! And that is what he is trying to do through Islam today—destroy Israel! The second scripture is Matthew 24:14 “This gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.” It is predicted that by the year 2015 the whole world—all peoples—will have heard the Gospel! Consequently, the devil is seeking and will seek to destroy the Church because he doesn’t want “the end to come.” Only the Church is capable of preaching the gospel to the whole world, and by so doing bring about the end. This is not the end of the world but rather is the end of the age and the beginning of the end for the devil! So there it is in plain language. So the next time you see Israel or the Church being attacked, you know who is really behind it and why. The good news is that the devil will lose and God and His people, Israel and the Church will win. It is written!
I am a voice of one crying in the wilderness, prepare the way of the Lord!
Jimmy Hammock

Friday, November 1, 2013

Basic Rules of Interpretation


When handling the Word of God, there are rules of interpretation that must be followed. This is important so that what you end up with is exegesis: “leading out” what is in the text. If these rules are not followed, then what you will end up with will be eisegesis: reading something “into” the text that is not there—such as your own presuppositions or preconceived ideas. Although there is always some subjectivity in Bible interpretation, the goal of the interpreter is to be as objective as possible. II Peter 1:20-21 says, Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation of things.  For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” With that said, I will list below some of the basic rules for interpreting the Word of God.

1.      Have at least a working knowledge of the original languages the Bible was written in. The Old Testament was written primarily in Hebrew, (a few chapters in Ezra and Daniel, and one verse in Jeremiah, was written in Aramaic); the New Testament was written in Koine Greek (“the common” language of the people). The importance of being able to understand the original languages is that when you translate from one language to another you can lose some of the original meaning of a word or words. For example, the Greeks had several words for love that we translate as only one word in English. In Greek, there is “philos,” meaning “brotherly love,” (Philadelphia is the combination of the Greek words for love and brotherly, hence “the city of brotherly love.” And then there is “agape,” meaning the “unconditional, willful love of God.” Therefore, a working knowledge of the original languages of the Bible is an invaluable tool in the exegesis of the scriptures.

2.      A second rule of interpreting the Word of God is to give careful attention to what the text meant in its original setting. This would require an understanding of who the author of the text was as well as the people to whom he was writing. For example, understanding that Matthew was writing to a first century Jewish audience to convince them that Jesus was the promised Old Testament Messiah would explain why he quotes so much from the Old Testament. That would obviously be very important to a Jewish audience and important to the one interpreting the text of Matthew.

3.      A third rule of interpretation is to understand the Jewish culture and mind set. With the exception of Luke, who was a Greek, the entire New Testament was written by Jews! It is important then to think like a first century Jew. How do you do that? First and foremost, learn to love the Old Testament. The Jews who wrote the New Testament did. It is very difficult to understand the person of Jesus the Messiah without understanding God’s revelation of Him in the Old Testament. The Old Testament was the prophecy and preparation for the New Testament. Therefore any serious interpreter of the New Testament must know the Old Testament.

4.      A fourth rule for interpreting the Word of God is to compare scripture with scripture. Or said another way, let scripture interpret scripture. For example, when you are studying the end times, it is essential to get a complete view of what the Bible teaches on this subject. Study what Jesus taught about the end times as well as what the Holy Spirit also said through the other Old Testament and New Testament writers. For example, it has been said that Daniel is essential to interpreting the book of the Revelation. Consequently, a sound New Testament theology and exegesis on the Second Coming of Jesus is dependent on this rule of interpretation. If this rule of interpretation is ignored, then you are likely to have a wrong as well as a dangerous end time theology!

5.      The fifth and final rule of interpretation that should never be ignored by anyone desiring to  properly interpret and exegete the Word of God is to always pray and be dependent upon the Holy Spirit. Although written over a period of 1600 years by forty different writers, The Holy Spirit is the ultimate Author of the scriptures. It is He and He alone who can take what is written and make it life and revelation to your soul!

The above list is not all inclusive, but is the basics of exegetical, Bible Interpretation. I hope this will help you in some small way to better know and understand “The Greatest Story” ever told! Shalom friends.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

A prophetic event is on the horizon!


This Sunday, October 6, 2013, at Warrior Assembly of God I will be preaching an end time message on “The Four Blood Moons on Two Jewish Feasts (Passover and Tabernacles)” that you simply cannot afford to miss!  I will show you how that these particular blood moons, which have occurred three times in the last 500 years according to NASA, are directly connected to the chosen people of Israel. I will further show you what happened in 1492, 1948 and 1967 concerning the Jews and why you should care. Finally, we will look at the next tetrad (series of four blood moons) that will occur in 2014 and 2015 according to NASA (on the Jewish feasts of Passover and Tabernacles) and what that may mean to not only Israel but to the whole world! Friends, a major prophetic event is on the horizon and you need answer only one question: Are you ready?

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The Push of God Has Begun
Garris ElkinsRecently, I took part in a conference with people attending from all around the world. The worship was powerful. During one of the morning worship sessions, the Lord began revealing to me a developing image of a father's heart. I saw a father gently pushing one of his children out onto a stage where the child was about to take part in a school play. He had never been on this stage before. The child began to resist the father's gentle push. He was afraid of being abandoned and left alone in front of the audience.
As this image developed, I realized this was a word for the Church. It was a picture of God who was beginning to propel His people out onto the world stage by the breath of His Spirit. Some who are feeling His push are resisting. They have been given promises in the past that have not yet been fulfilled and they are responding to God out of disappointment and fatigue.
"I Want Your Trust to Be Placed in My Presence Alone"
As this image was taking place, I heard the Lord say:
"I am beginning to push My people into a new season upon the world stage. This push will be a work of My Spirit needed to overcome a reluctance that has developed in your hearts. I will never call you to a new place where I would ever leave you alone and without power. As I told My servant Joshua, I tell you today, 'I will never leave you or forsake you.' The stage upon which I am now positioning you is a place complete with everything you will need to accomplish My will.
"My presence will be your single resource in this new place. Bring nothing with you. I want your trust to be placed in My presence alone, not in your performance or what has worked for you in the past. I will stand with you in this new place to help you experience the fullness of what I have called you to do in My name. I have begun a good work in you, and this push of My Spirit is to move you to a new place where you will stand confident until My good work is completed in you."
This is a season of countdown, for the drawing of a curtain, where things God has promised are about to be seen. Many have chosen to remain standing in the wings of God's miraculous stage instead of stepping out onto this visible platform of faith. It has been such a long time that some have forgotten why they are waiting. They have forgotten the words of their part in God's play. They don't remember their cue. The push of God's Spirit is coming to launch them out onto God's stage for a demonstration of His love and power as the curtain of time is pulled back.
Garris Elkins, Senior Leader
Living Waters Church - Medford, Oregon

Email: info@prophetichorizons.com
Garris Elkins' ministry, Prophetic Horizons, is a ministry of teaching, writing and prophecy committed to raising up a prophetic generation to speak to the cultures of our world with the empowered voice of Heaven. Garris and his wife, Jan, are the Senior Leaders of Living Waters Church in Medford, Oregon, and have two grown children, Anna and David.