Ministry in Tribulation
One of the chief reasons G_d gives us prophecy is to help us prepare for various changes which are to come upon us in the coming hours. A good example of this can be found in Acts 11:28-29:
"And there stood up one of them named Agabus, and signified by the Spirit that there should be great dearth throughout all the world: which came to pass in the days of Claudius Caesar. Then the disciples, every man according to his ability, determined to send relief unto the brethren which dwelt in Judea:"
In this case, the disciples responded to a prophecy, not by bragging that they knew something the rest of the world did not know, but by dealing with the coming problem that Agabus prophesied. He saw the famine coming and the church was able to prepare for it.
The Bible gives us more than ample warning that when certain conditions existed, that you could expect tribulation to be at hand. In fact, the books of Daniel and Revelation discuss this fact in almost exacting detail. There are few that doubt the fact that the Biblical conditions for tribulation have been met. Yet the church in North America has done little to prepare itself for the coming tribulation. Instead, many of the church organizations have elected to embrace the "pre-tribulation rapture" theory, and as such, have determined that preparation is unnecessary. We pray that if you hold to this thinking, you should objectively research your Bible and learn the truth for yourself. As the disciples received prophecy and moved accordingly, so we need to do the same thing. We see the tribulation coming, actually intensifying as we get closer to the end. But how are we to plan and prepare without compromising our Christianity?
Changes in the Spiritual Environment
Proper Christian preparation begins with the heart. It is vital that you "make your calling and election sure". (See Newsletter 2-2 for details on this.) But even after you have done this, you have only completed the beginning of the task. Preparation is a long and time-consuming task which requires a lot of thought and considerable prayer. Preparation takes on both spiritual and physical attributes. We have offered spiritual advice in our previous newsletters as have other ministries as well. Other ministries have done a good job of dealing with the physical preparation. This preparation is good, but only when you truly understand the conditions you will be required to work under.
One of the major concerns in preparing for the end is to understand the spiritual environment which you will be working and living in. Unlike the recent couple of centuries, Christian ministry is not going to be as free to operate as it once has been. The days are quickly passing when you can openly discuss Christianity on the street corner. With the coming of the end, you are going to see major changes which we will evaluate in coming newsletters.
Probably the biggest spiritual environmental concern is the increased level of Satanic activity. As we move closer to the end, we can expect Satan (also known as Lucifer) to unleash all of his resources in an effort to subvert the entire earth to his realm of control. This effort will be spearheaded by Satan himself as he knows that his time is short.
Every Spiritual Technology he has been developing in his laboratory will now be unleashed and used against every member of the Body of Christ. The primary objective of this move will be to destroy the faith of every Christian. The key change in the spiritual environment though, will be organization. Remember when Jesus made the following statement:
Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand: And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand? (Mat 12:25-26)
When you understand that Jesus was addressing the Pharisees, the same people who he previously described using the following phrase in John 8:44: "Ye are of your father the devil," then you can understand that when he made that statement, he was in effect actually mocking Satan's kingdom.
In what way is Jesus mocking the Kingdom of Satan? By reminding him that his kingdom was divided against itself. Anyone who has worked in the deliverance ministry for very long learns that the devils hate each other. While Ephesians 6:12 identifies a definite ranking system in the kingdom of Satan, it is also well known that the lower ranking devils will do almost anything they can to move up in rank so they can acquire more power and influence. While there has always been an organizational structure in the kingdom of Satan, the devils often subverted it to achieve their personal ambitions and agendas.
But now that the end of the age approacheth, it is apparent that Lucifer has taken a greater level of management control and suddenly, a dictatorial style of leadership has been added to the Satanic system. That is why they have made such powerful gains within the governments of the world. It is also why the governments of the world have become so depraved and reprobate.
The attack on the Branch Davidian church in Waco, Texas is a clear example of this. Normal students of law enforcement history would have regarded the fire and subsequent murder of men, women and children as the worst debacle in American law enforcement history. However, the media "spin doctors" actually worked hard to sell the government's actions as an act of mercy for the sake of the children inside the compound. There was no feelings of grief for the people who died. In fact, it was almost like the government felt it was doing these people a favor by killing them. It is a strange paradox to kill a man before you can convince him what is right. A clear signal of a depraved government controlled by the devil and his angels. But why should we be surprised at all this. Have we not been reading the prophecies of the Bible?
Dealing with Governments in the End Times
Here is these United States of America, we have lived in very fortunate times indeed. How many other governments would allow you run around and share the gospel without restriction? Not very many. For over a thousand years, it was illegal to own a Bible written in the common language of the people. Those who did were burned at the stake as heretics. (Read Foxe's Book of Martyrs for a full history.) Even when the King James version reached fruition in 1769, (the 1611 version and other subsequent versions were riddled with typos and archaic words) it wasn't until the people learned to read and write that they could actually read the Bible. This window of opportunity lasted for about 270 years before the devil was finally able to sell church people on a more "modern version" of the Bible.
Now as we come to the end, the open and free spiritual environment has come to an end. We can no longer think that governments are going to stand by and allow Christians to promote their gospels unhindered. Instead, if you want to preach against the sin of homosexuality, you will be sued and otherwise condemned in the public media. If you make the simple statement that "Jesus is the only way to heaven," you will be condemned as a bigot. We have come to a time when even the pastor's sermon must come under the "politically correct" scrutiny before it can be preached.
However, as we have seen in Waco, just speaking words that are uncomplimentary of the world system can get your place of worship torched. The government is getting less and less interested in protecting free speech. Even worse, most government officials regard the constitution as nothing more than just another piece of paper. They now see themselves as the law, effectively becoming a law unto themselves.
The Christian must realize that the government is now the enemy of every true Bible-Believing Christian. Suddenly, the Apostle Paul's admonition to "walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming the time, because the days are evil" (Ephesians 5:15-16) makes a great deal more sense. We must further realize that potentially, every move we make is going to be watched by someone or something. Sometimes, the people watching us will not even know they are watching us, for it is the devil inside them that is doing the watching.
However, one must not confuse walking circumspectly with walking in fear. When you walk in fear, your concern centers around the enemy who is watching you. When you walk circumspectly, your main concern is whether what you are doing is in obedience to what God wants. Sometimes, we have to stop ourselves and ask the question: Are we walking circumspectly or walking in fear? If you are walking in fear, you need to get in prayer and find out why you are walking in fear. The answer might surprise you.
Another thing we as Americans have to get over is the idea that our government is an extension of the hand of God. One of the most embedded ideas in English and American legal history is the idea that the monarch (and/or President, Prime-Minister, etc. ) is somehow the hand of God for the country. In law they call that doctrine "the power of the sovereign." It is the reason you cannot sue the federal government unless you secure permission from them first. The reason is that you cannot sue God.
We as Christians have to realize that the government is not God, nor is it ever going to be God until Jesus Christ returns. Therefore, we cannot consider it automatic heresy if we are led to do something in direct contradiction with the edicts of government. Remember Peter's statement of the religious leaders of the day: "We ought to obey God rather than men." This they said in response to the government's edict that they should not preach Christ any longer. The Bible is full of examples where the men of God choose to obey God rather than the edicts of men.
Even in American history, we can find an example. Remember the famous abolitionist, John Brown. As a prophet, God showed him that unless the U.S. Government abolished slavery, the entire country would be plunged into a bloody Civil War. Apparently, these visions were so prolific to Prophet Brown that he felt it necessary to take up arms against those who supported slavery. Prophet Brown felt that by sacrificing lives in Kansas to get slavery out, that maybe the rest of the country would see the error of slavery and the government would abolish it. In the end, John Brown and his followers would meet their end at Harper's Ferry, (West) Virginia, at the hands of the Army under the command of one Col. Robert E. Lee, as they were supposedly trying to overthrow the government and bring in a new government that would abolish slavery.
Even though we are 140 years after the fact, I still think John Brown saw the vision and then left God's grace to seek a more humanistic response. Sort of like what we saw out of one Ms. Janet Reno, Esq., when she said that by killing the children at Waco, she was somehow saving them. Funny how humanism always reaches the same end: to convince people of what is right, you have to kill them! Still, I am open to correction on this issue, since many of the details surrounding the life of John Brown are still absent. The only history we have of John Brown is the one sanctioned by the government, just as the only history we have of David Koresh is the one given us by the FBI-ATF control center.
In any case, we have to realize that the time is come for us to understand that God may require us to do things which may be totally contrary to the edicts of the federal government. Some people may even find themselves in a place where they may be in armed conflict with the government. My only admonition would be that any act of war-defense be preceded by an inquiry from the LORD as to whether you should go into battle. The secondary admonition would be that you should wait on the LORD for an answer. The last thing we need in this hour and time is a "King Saul" who gets impatient and makes his own sacrifice when he should have waited for the prophet Samuel. (Read I Samuel 13 for the story.) We need to wait on our men of God, to get their word before we go rushing off into battle.
Bulletin: Assassination in Israel
As we go to press with this issue of The WhiteStone Letter, news reached us of the untoward assassination of Israeli Prime Minister: Yitzhak Rabin. Our initial information says a right-wing Jew did the job, but we will defer our judgment until we can get further information. Our media has a rather unfortunate history of being wrong about things. Therefore, we are going to reserve judgment until we get further information. One thing that bothers us is the emergence of the "lone right-wing, madman, gunman" theory which governments insist upon telling us every time there is an assassination. Instead, we suspect there was some kind of plot involved which will explain everything. Our contacts have indicated to us for several weeks that a climate hostile to Mr. Rabin has existed in Israel for some time. While the media is searching for a right-wing bogeyman, we need to expand our scope and look in all directions.
We found it interesting that he was shot on the evening of November 4, 1995, right after the conclusion of the Sabbath. Any time I see a major action in the eleventh month, it speaks of judgment. (Remember that President Kennedy was killed in the eleventh month.) Also, these verses in Psalms 95:10-11 speak to the situation:
"Forty years long was I grieved with this generation, and said, It is a people that do err in their heart, and they have not known my ways: Unto whom I sware in my wrath that they should not enter into my rest."
For while Mr. Rabin sought peace with his neighbors, his failure to know the Prince of Peace has brought judgment down upon him.
The Foundation has taken a considerable interest in the affairs of Israel. To that end, we have even developed contacts over there to give us clean and uncensored reports which we are unable to get from our own media.
This contact called us last week and shared with us some very interesting information. The biggest news is a big-time revival of Arabs coming to Christ. When they come to Christ, they quickly learn about Biblical prophecy and how it relates to the Israel. As a result, they become vehement supporters of the national of Israel. They realize that if the PLO or any other Arab government takes over, their Islamic religion would regard these Christians as infidels and order them killed. Accordingly, they need our prayers.
On a related front, our operative has also initiated an effort to bring together to two largest competing factions of Christians in Israel. The point of conflict: the adoption of the "New Age" adjustments as found in the New International Version and other modern Bibles. One group had accepted the doctrinal modifications while the other group has not. We have sought to bring these people together, to first seek a common ground, and secondly, to study, evaluate and then pray about their differences. So far, the results have been good, but there is a long road ahead. We need to lift these people up in prayer.
To explain a little further, we have always felt that if any group chooses to objectively research the Bible under the direction of the Holy Spirit, the entire group will come to the same conclusion. For that reason, we are not afraid to sit down and study the Bible with anyone, as long as they are willing to push their biases aside and study with an open mind.
Just as another note, we have come across a group of Christian people who want to build a plant in Israel which would produce the plastic resins needed to make computer chips and other specialty equipment. They need both financial investment and Christian people to come over ready to work and witness with their lives.
We appreciate all of the comments you have been sending us. If you have questions, please write us.