4/29/11

Voice of the Martyrs Prayer Update for week of april 29, 2011

The Voice of the Martyrs USA: www.persecution.com

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. Romans 8:18

Afghanistan—Imprisoned Afghan Believers Released—VOM Sources

Luke 4:18
The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;


Two Afghan Christians were released from prison recently. Shoaib Assadullah, who was arrested in October 2010 for giving a Bible to a friend, was released on March 31. While imprisoned in the city of Mazar-e-Sharif, Shoaib was physically abused and threatened by fellow prisoners. He refused to recant his faith in exchange for his freedom. Another imprisoned Afghan Christian, Said Musa, was released from prison in February after serving nine months on apostasy charges. He was granted asylum in Europe. Thank the Lord for the release of Shoaib and Said! Pray that believers in Afghanistan will stand strong in their faith and reach out to their neighbors, despite their small numbers.

Vietnam—U.S. Evangelist Gives Historic Sermon at Christian Festival—Compass Direct News, Luis Palau Association, BosNewsLife, VOM Canada

Matthew 10:19
But when they deliver you up, do not worry about how or what you should speak. For it will be given to you in that hour what you should speak;


Evangelist Luis Palau made history on April 9 when he preached at the Protestant centennial celebration in Vietnam. Palau, who preached on two consecutive nights in Ho Chi Minh City, became the first U.S.-based evangelist to preach at a major event in Vietnam since the 1975 communist takeover. About 5,500 people came forward to receive Christ over the course of two nights, even though authorities forced event organizers to relocate from an open field to an enclosed stadium at the last minute. The Palau team had hoped to hold a similar event the following weekend in Hanoi, but organizers were unable to get permission to use their chosen venue. Meanwhile, the Vietnamese government has increased its oppression of minority Christians living in the central highlands — forcing hundreds to renounce their faith. Thank God for this evangelistic opportunity in Vietnam, and pray for the new believers. Pray that Christians in rural areas will face persecution bravely.

Somalia—Al-Shabab Murders Christian Convert—Compass Direct News

Exodus 14:14
The LORD will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace.”


Members of the militant Muslim group al-Shabab murdered a 21-year-old Christian in the Lower Shabele region on Monday, April 18, as part of its campaign to rid the country of Christianity. Two al-Shabab militants reportedly entered the home of Hassan Adawe Adan at 7:30 p.m. and dragged him outside. A source told Compass Direct that the militants then shot Adan and shouted, “Allahu Akbar” (God is great). Adan, who was single, lived with his Muslim family. He secretly converted to Christianity several months ago, and area Christians said they think someone informed al-Shabab of Adan’s new faith. “This incident is making other converts live in extreme fear, as the militants always keep an open eye to anyone professing the Christian faith,” a Compass Direct source said. Pray that this news will not discourage other secret believers in Somalia, but will instead reaffirm their commitment to Christ. Pray that the Lord will fight their battles for them even if they keep silent about their faith.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

© 2011 The Voice of the Martyrs

4/28/11

Hitler, Religion, and the Holocaust (Promo)


From Living Waters/Way of the Master ministries is a promo for an upcoming documentary.

http://www.youtube.com/user/thewayofthemaster
http://www.livingwaters.com/
http://wayofthemaster.com/

Should Christians Never Offend Anyone?

Clearing Up Misconceptions
by Jeremy Ham, AiG–U.S.
January 25, 2011

Over time, many beliefs with little to no Biblical basis have crept into common Christian thinking. This web series aims to correct some of the most commonly held misconceptions about the Bible.

In this current world, offending someone seems rather easy. We probably have all offended or hurt someone's feelings, whether it was intentional or not. Is the belief that Christians should never offend anyone a biblical guideline?

Continue reading this article on the website:

http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/2011/01/25/christians-should-not-offend#

© Copyright 2011 Answers in Genesis

4/25/11

Trying to be a good person is not good enough, why?

The Bible teaches that a person cannot be put right with God or earn their way into Heaven through good works/deeds. Unless you turn to God through faith in Jesus, then the Bible says that person will not be saved, and therefore will not go to Heaven and will instead go to hell. A person will not automatically be right with God and go to Heaven when they die just because they tried to be a good person in life or because they read the Bible or went to church or gave to charity or died as a martyr or anything else of that nature. The Bible teaches that our good deeds are like filthy rags because of our sinful nature (which every single human being has). This is the whole point of why Jesus came to die for us, because we simply aren't good enough on our own! This is why to receive salvation and have a right standing and relationship with God we must, absolutely must, come to Jesus in order to receive it. Yes, a person is supposed to be good and do what is right ("But just as He who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do" 1 Peter 1:15), but not in order to receive salvation. Good works goes along with living a Christian life through Jesus after a person receives their salvation through Jesus which is solely through faith alone; turning to Him in faith in who He is (God) and what He has done (took the punishment that we deserve for our sins and put it upon Himself and then overcame death through rising from the dead).

Isaiah 64:6 "We are all infected and impure with sin. When we display our righteous deeds, they are nothing but filthy rags. Like autumn leaves, we wither and fall, and our sins sweep us away like the wind."

John 1:1-5,9-14,18 "In the beginning was the Word (Jesus), and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through Him (Jesus) all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made. In Him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it...The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. He was in the world, and though the world was made through Him, the world did not recognize Him. He came to that which was His own, but His own did not receive Him. Yet to all who did receive Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God—children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God...The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth...No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son (Jesus), who is Himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made Him known."

John 3:16-18 "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son (Jesus), so that whosoever believes in Him (Jesus) should not perish, but have everlasting life. God sent his Son (Jesus) into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through Him (Jesus). There is no judgment against anyone who believes in Him (Jesus). But anyone who does not believe in Him (Jesus) has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son (Jesus). And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed. But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants."

John 14:6 "Jesus answered, 'I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."

Romans 3:20,23,27,28 "Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin...But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe...for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus...Where, then, is boasting? It is excluded. Because of what law? The law that requires works? No, because of the law that requires faith. For we maintain that a person is justified by faith apart from the works of the law."

Ephesians 2:8-9 "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast."

Philippians 3:3,4,8,9 "For we who worship by the Spirit of God are the ones who are truly circumcised (true believers). We rely on what Christ Jesus has done for us. We put no confidence in human effort, though I could have confidence in my own effort if anyone could. Indeed, if others have reason for confidence in their own efforts, I have even more!...I once thought these things were valuable, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done. Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord...I no longer count on my own righteousness through obeying the law; rather, I become righteous through faith in Christ. For God’s way of making us right with himself depends on faith."

4/24/11

Resurrection Sunday 2011

Happy Resurrection Sunday!

The penalty, corruption and authority of sin has been taken care of through Christ's death, burial and resurrection. We can receive forgiveness and cleansing, through His grace and not by works. Amen.

4/23/11

The Hal Lindsey Report: The Week That Changed the World


This week on 'The Hal Lindsey Report'

Because of the tremendous response every time it airs, it's become something of a tradition in the short span from 2008 until now for me to present during Holy Week a program I call, "The Week that Changed the World." The timing of the events of that week is critical. Jesus Himself set the timetable.

I'll tell you why I think we're mistaken in commemorating "Good Friday." It should be "Good Thursday!"

And you probably know that the Feasts of Passover, Unleavened Bread, and First Fruits dramatically and poignantly foreshadow the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. But there may be some aspects of the preparation for those feasts that surprise and move you.

Finally, I'll discuss the overwhelming evidence for Christ's resurrection presented by "The Undisturbed Grave Cloths."

Please tune in and tell someone else about the show. Don't miss this week's Report on TBN, Daystar, Inspiration, CPM Network, various local stations, www.hallindsey.com, or www.hischannel.com

Rejoice! Jesus Christ lives! Happy Resurrection Day!

God Bless,

Hal Lindsey
mail: HLMM, P.O. Box 470470, Tulsa, OK 74147
email: comments@hallindsey.com
web: http://www.hallindsey.com

4/22/11

Good Friday 2011

Today is Good Friday, which is observed as the day that Jesus was arrested, beaten and crucified on the cross, hence dying for the sins of the world. This year it just so happens to land on the same day as Earth Day. May we pause and reflect upon the sacrifice of Jesus, which makes it possible for us sinners (all of humanity) to receive salvation and have a right relationship with God. Read the Bible (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John give the crucifixion account), watch a Christian movie or something. Whatever helps you to take this all in.

John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, so that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life."

John 14:6 "Jesus answered, 'I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.'"

1 Timothy 2:3-4 "This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth."

Ezekiel 18 "Do you think that I like to see wicked people die? says the Sovereign Lord. Of course not! I want them to turn from their wicked ways and live...Repent, and turn from your sins. Don’t let them destroy you! Put all your rebellion behind you, and find yourselves a new heart and a new spirit...I don’t want you to die, says the Sovereign Lord. Turn back and live!"


Song "Via Dolorosa" by Sandi Patty with clips from the movie "Passion of the Christ."

Israel - Oil Leviathan


From the "Hal Lindsey Report" (04-15-2011)
http://www.hallindsey.com

Voice of the Martyrs Prayer Update for week of april 22, 2011


"Prayer is the pulse of life; by it the doctor can tell what is the condition of the heart. The sin of prayerlessness is a proof for the ordinary Christian or minister that the life of God in the soul is in deadly sickness and weakness." - Andrew Murray

"praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints" - Ephesians 6:18


AZERBAIJAN--Unregistered Churches Banned from Worship (VOM Canada)

Hebrews 5:7

Three religious communities in Gyanja, Azerbaijan, have been banned from meeting for worship. The worship bans were imposed in mid-March because the communities do not have state registration. Local sources said one of the religious communities was warned that "if they met for worship on the following Sunday or at any future date they would all be arrested." Two buses full of police and riot police later arrived to prevent them from worshiping, but the church had already reluctantly canceled the Sunday service that day. The government, however, continues to deny its involvement in religious oppression. Babek Sadykov of the Gyanja Police said, "No one is being prevented from worshiping." And President Ilham Aliev told a government-initiated World Forum on Intercultural Dialogue that "freedom of religion and freedom of conscience have been fully established in Azerbaijan." Pray that believers will be encouraged to continue worshiping together despite opposition.

EGYPT--Copts "Terrorized" by Gang (Release International)

1 Samuel 14:6

Since late January, Copts in Minya province have suffered repeated attacks from a large gang of thugs who target Christians. The first attack on a Coptic family occurred on Jan. 28. The family reported the assault to police but withdrew their allegations after receiving death threats from the gang. Then, on Jan. 29, the gang leader raped two Coptic women, threatening to kill their children if they took the matter to police. In another assault, gang members kidnapped a 30-year-old man and a 12-year-old boy; their families were forced to pay ransoms to secure their release. The gang has also reportedly imposed a nighttime curfew on Copts. Copts in Minya are dismayed that the police and army have not taken more decisive steps to detain gang members and their leader. Pray that authorities will take action to apprehend the gang members in Minya province.

CHINA--Pastor Arrested in Inner Mongolia (VOM Sources)

Joshua 1:5-7

VOM contacts in China report that one of their dear friends, a pastor, was arrested in Inner Mongolia Tuesday, April 12. The pastor, Jesse, was arrested along with four other leaders. His "offense" is that 1,000 university students attend his church. About 100 of the university students are also Bible school students who are taught by a VOM worker. Police have detained Jesse five times over the last year, and they had warned him and let him know they were watching him. Pastor Jesse and the four others are being held in a detention center where prisoners are usually held for at least 30 days. It’s not known whether he will be formally sentenced. A friend wrote, "We sent some clothes [to Jesse] but were not able to meet and talk to him. Please pray. The situation here is so bad." Ask the Lord to encourage Pastor Jesse, and pray for his release. Pray that his church members will not falter in their faith but will grow stronger.

Suggested Links

www.Persecution.com
The Voice of the Martyrs Official Homepage

www.PrisonerAlert.com
Write to a Christian Prisoner in their own Language

www.VOMBooks.com
The Voice of the Martyrs Online Store

Twitter Page
Follow VOM-USA on Twitter for updates and prayer requests.

Facebook Page
You can become a fan of VOM on Facebook, and connect with other VOM supporters.

Resolving Conflicts in Marriage

by http://www.5lovelanguages.com/

What's so bad about arguing?

First, let me clarify what I mean by the word argue. It is a legal term. In a court of law attorneys make arguments designed to show the guilt or innocence of their client. They present the 'facts' with the attitude, "Any reasonable person would agree with my argument."

What works fairly well in the court room, works poorly in a marriage, because there is no judge available to determine when your spouse is 'out of order'. Arguments become charged with emotion and you end up yelling, screaming, or crying. Each feels the other is unreasonable. What's so bad about arguing? It turns spouses into enemies who have feelings of hurt, anger, and resentment.

Why is it so important to resolve conflicts?

Because unresolved conflicts stand as barriers to marital unity. Conflicts are those issues over which we have differences and we both feel that our side is right. If we don't find a 'meeting place' we become enemies instead of teammates. And, life becomes a battlefield. No one likes to fight. So, sooner or later someone gives up and walks away.

How sad that thousands of marriages end because couples never learn to resolve conflicts. The first step in resolving conflicts is to get out of the "arguing mode" and get into the "understanding mode". Stop trying to win an argument and start trying to understand each other.

Why do people argue?

In one word, rigidity. In essence we are saying, "My way is the right way, and if you don't do it my way, I'll make your life miserable." The arguer insists on getting his own way.

Conflict resolvers have a different attitude. They say, "I'm sure we can work this out in a way that will be positive for both of us. Let's think about it together." They look for a win-win resolution. They begin by respecting each other's ideas and looking for a solution instead of trying to win an argument.

The Scriptures say, "Love does not demand it's own way." Actually, love is looking out for the other person's interest. "What would be best for you?" is the question of love.

You will never resolve conflicts if you don't learn to listen.

Many people think they are listening when in fact they are simply reloading their verbal guns. Listening means seeking to understand what the other person is thinking and feeling. It is putting ourselves in the other person's shoes and trying to look at the world through their eyes.

Here's a good sentence with which to begin. "I want to understand what you are saying because I know it is important." One man told me that he made a sign which read: "I am a Listener." When his wife started talking he would hang it around his neck to remind himself of what he was doing. His wife would smile and say, "I hope it's true." He learned to be a good listener.

Can you hear me now?

We are all busy. Often, too busy to listen. And yet, listening is the only way you will ever come to understand your spouse's thoughts and feelings. Listening takes time and requires focus. Many people pride themselves in being able to listen while reading e-mails or watching television. One husband said, "my wife insists that I sit down and listen to her. I feel like I'm in a straitjacket, like I'm wasting time."

When you drop everything, look at your spouse and listen, you communicate, "You are the most important person in my life." On the other hand, when you listen while doing other things, you communicate: "You are one of my many interests." Listening is a powerful expression of love.

© 2010 Moody Publishers

4/21/11

What does the Bible say about reincarnation and karma?

by gotquestions.org

Question: "What does the Bible say about reincarnation?"

Answer: The concept of reincarnation is completely without foundation in the Bible, which clearly tells us that we die once and then face judgment (Hebrews 9:27). The Bible never mentions people having a second chance at life or coming back as different people or animals. Jesus told the criminal on the cross, "Today you will be with me in paradise" (Luke 23:43), not "You will have another chance to live a life on this earth." Matthew 25:46 specifically tells us that believers go on to eternal life while unbelievers go onto eternal punishment. Reincarnation has been a popular belief for thousands of years, but it has never been accepted by Christians or followers of Judaism because it is contradictory to Scripture.

The one passage that some point to as evidence for reincarnation is Matthew 17:10-12 which links John the Baptist with Elijah. However, the passage does not say that John the Baptist was Elijah reincarnated but that he would have fulfilled the prophecy of Elijah's coming if the people had believed his words and thereby believed in Jesus as the Messiah (Matthew 17:12). The people specifically asked John the Baptist if he was Elijah, and he said, "No, I am not" (John 1:21).

Belief in reincarnation is an ancient phenomenon and is a central tenet within the majority of Indian religious traditions, such as Hinduism, Sikhism, and Jainism. Many modern pagans also believe in reincarnation as do some New Age movements, along with followers of spiritism. For the Christian, however, there can be no doubt: reincarnation is unbiblical and must be rejected as false.

Recommended Resource: The Wonder of Heaven: A Biblical Tour of Our Eternal Home by Ron Rhodes.

Question: "What does the Bible say about karma?"

Answer: Karma is a theological concept found in the Buddhist and Hindu religions. It is the idea that how you live your life will determine the quality of life you will have after reincarnation. If you are unselfish, kind, and holy during this lifetime, you will be rewarded by being reincarnated (reborn into a new earthly body) into a pleasant life. However, if you live a life of selfishness and evil, you will be reincarnated into a less-than-pleasant lifestyle. In other words, you reap in the next life what you sow in this one. Karma is based on the theological belief in reincarnation. The Bible rejects the idea of reincarnation; therefore, it does not support the idea of karma.

Hebrews 9:27 states, “Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment…” This Bible verse makes clear two important points which, for Christians, negate the possibility of reincarnation and karma. First, it states that we are “destined to die once,” meaning that humans are only born once and only die once. There is no endless cycle of life and death and rebirth, an idea inherent in the reincarnation theory. Second, it states that after death we face judgment, meaning that there is no second chance, like there is in reincarnation and karma, to live a better life. You get one shot at life and living it according to God’s plan, and that is it.

The Bible talks a lot about reaping and sowing. Job 4:8 says, “As I have observed, those who plow evil and those who sow trouble reap it.” Psalm 126:5 says, “Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy.” Luke 12:24 says, “Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!” In each of these instances, as well as all the other references to reaping and sowing, the act of receiving the rewards of your actions takes place in this life, not in some future life. It is a present-day activity, and the references make it clear that the fruit you reap will be commensurate with the actions you have performed. In addition, the sowing you perform in this life will affect your reward or punishment in the afterlife.

This afterlife is not a rebirth or a reincarnation into another body here on earth. It is either eternal suffering in hell (Matthew 25:46) or eternal life in heaven with Jesus, who died so that we might live eternally with Him. This should be the focus of our life on earth. The apostle Paul wrote in Galatians 6:8-9, “The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”

Finally, we must always remember that it was Jesus whose death on the cross resulted in the reaping of eternal life for us, and that it is faith in Jesus that gives us this eternal life. Ephesians 2:8-9 tells us, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.” Therefore, we see that the concept of reincarnation and karma is incompatible with what the Bible teaches about life, death, and the sowing and reaping of eternal life.

Recommended Resource: Jesus Among Other gods by Ravi Zacharias.

© Copyright 2002-2011 Got Questions Ministries.

Can Christians Have Doubts About God?


Greg Koukl of Stand to Reason answers the question, "Can someone be a Christian and have doubts about God?" For more visit http://www.str.org.

4/20/11

Manna Fest w/Perry Stone - Jerusalem: Your Home for a Thousand Years

Perry teaches on the 1000 year reign of Jesus upon the Earth after He comes back to Earth, also referred to as the Millenial Kingdom. www.voe.org

Part 1


Part 2


Part 3

4/18/11

Haven't posted for a couple of days. Celebrated the Passover Seder tonight. Just a reminder: Don't give into darkness. Turn to God and let go. God loves you more than you could ever understand.

4/16/11

Courageous (New Movie Trailer)


From the people that brought you "Fireproof," "Facing the Giants" and "Flywheel" comes "Courageous." Four men, one calling: To serve and protect. When tragedy strikes home, these men are left wrestling with their hopes, their fears, their faith, and their fathering. Protecting the streets is second nature. Raising their children in a God-honoring way? That's courageous.

In Theaters September 30

For more information visit:
http://www.courageousthemovie.com

Is the Date of Easter of pagan Origin?

Misconception: The church borrowed the date of Easter from pagan celebrations, so Christians should not celebrate this holiday.
by Roger Patterson, AiG–U.S.
April 12, 2011

Other Articles in the Series
Is the name of "Easter" of pagan origin?
Are the symbols and customs of Easter of pagan origin?

Clearing Up Misconceptions

You may have heard the claim that Christians should not celebrate Easter because of its origins. Many believe that what we call Easter today was developed as Roman Catholicism co-opted pagan festivals celebrated in different regions in honor of various false gods and goddesses. The claims are laced with names of scholars who have made connections between the names of the festivals and goddesses, the timing of the celebration, and the symbols used.

Continue reading this article on the website:

http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/2011/04/12/easter-date-pagan#

http://www.answersingenesis.org/

© Copyright 2011 Answers in Genesis

4/15/11

Voice of the Martyrs Prayer Update for week of april 15, 2011

The Voice of the Martyrs USA: www.persecution.com

“As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. John 15:9

China—Police Break Up Outdoor Worship in Beijing
China Aid Association / Los Angeles Times


Hebrews 5:7
Who, in the days of His flesh, when He had offered up prayers and supplications, with vehement cries and tears to Him who was able to save Him from death, and was heard because of His godly fear,


Police detained and fingerprinted more than 100 members of an unregistered Beijing church on April 10 after the church gathered for worship at an outdoor location near the city’s university neighborhood. The Shouwang Church, which has a congregation of about 1,000, was forced to meet outdoors after being repeatedly denied access to rented space. The church has faced difficulties with three separate spaces it has tried to use for worship since 2009. During that time, local authorities pressured the management of two hotels and one building developer to deny the Shouwang Church worship space, leaving them nowhere to meet. In March, the church made the difficult decision to meet outdoors. They understood that because of the public nature of their protest, they would likely suffer as a congregation and as individuals. Please pray for the Shouwang Church as they stand before man and God with clear consciences. “Pray for us in a loud voice, and raise up hands and pray vigilantly!”

Israel—Pressure Increasing on Messianic Jews
VOM Sources


Hosea 3:5
Afterward the children of Israel shall return and seek the LORD their God and David their king. They shall fear the LORD and His goodness in the latter days.


VOM sources say Messianic Jews in Israel are facing increased pressure from groups opposed to freedom of religion. One of these groups, Yad L’Achim, staged a demonstration against a Messianic congregation of 150 in Ashdod. “The speech against the believers was slanderous and vicious,” said a VOM source. An Israeli television station that recently profiled Yad L’Achim described the organization as a militia that goes outside the law to carry out its agenda. Many Messianic Jews have had residency visas and even their citizenship revoked once their faith in Jesus was discovered. Others face constant harassment at their homes and businesses. “It is very important for you who pray for the Messianic body in Israel to … understand the depth of the paranoia and the hatred for the name of the true Messiah of Israel,” the VOM source said. Pray that Jesus will reveal himself to all those in Israel.

India—Eighteen Indian Christians Arrested
VOM Canada


Psalm 109:20–21
Let this be the LORD’s reward to my accusers,
And to those who speak evil against my person.

But You, O GOD the Lord,
Deal with me for Your name’s sake;
Because Your mercy is good, deliver me.


Eighteen Christians in Odisha state (formerly called Orissa), including two pastors, were arrested on March 28 for converting to Christianity without an official permit. The two pastors and 16 newly converted Christians were arrested after a police complaint was filed against them in Mayurbhanj district. The Christians were brought before the sub-divisional judicial magistrate at Baripada and charged under the “Orissa Freedom of Religion Act,” which bans any conversion lacking a permit issued by authorities. All of the Christians were released on bail within three days. Pray that all charges against them will be dropped. Ask the Lord to minister to the new converts and deepen their faith through this persecution.

Add the PrisonerAlert.com application on Facebook by visiting http://apps.facebook.com/prisoneralert/

Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Hollywood Prayer Network Newsletter (apr 2011)


Dear HPN members!

HAPPY EASTER! April is the month in 2011 for celebrating the glorious Resurrection of our Lord! Let’s invite our friends and family, no matter what they believe, to join us as we gather this Easter. It’s the perfect day to reach out to all those people around us who may have no plans next Sunday. Have a joyful time together! Let’s also pray for the people in entertainment community who have no idea what this day means. May God bring Christians to them to explain why it’s such an incredible time of year!

SUMMARY:

• HPN praises God for His faithfulness and for supplying our daily bread!
• Continue to pray for Charlie Sheen • Continue to pray for Justin Bieber http://www.hollywoodprayernetwork.org/content/prayer-justin-bieber
• Pray for the 64th annual Cannes Film Festival coming up this May
• We thank God for the many Christians He has placed here as salt and light
• The television Execs are headed toward the annual UPFRONTS this month
• HPN wants our pray-ers to understand how destructive “celebrity” can be
• Pray for the new Christians who come into town to pursue a career
• Please pray for the Christians who are working successfully in the industry
• We are thankful for Bernie, in Illinois, who supports our passion
• Sign up with RALPHS Grocery Store so that they will donate 2% to HPN
• Join the Christian community on Thurs., May 5th for the National Day of Prayer
• Check us out on Facebook and become our Friend!

PRAISE:
• We praise God for His faithfulness. It has been the driest financial time for HPN in 10 years. And yet, we know that God is faithful and will continue to be so. We just received a miraculous donation from a dear friend. God chose to supply this for us, in the perfect time, and the perfect amount for that moment. We should never question His provision, His timing or His intimate care for us! Let’s keep praying for more miracles where only God can get the glory!

UPDATES:
• Continue to pray for Charlie Sheen, as he travels the country doing press interviews, and live shows about his life. He is a broken man who needs the love and protection of the Lord, not a platform to discuss his brokenness. Let’s ask God to work a miracle in his life, to surround him with solid believers who can help him find truth, love and for protection from those who take advantage of his vulnerability. Please pray as you read this article.

• Continue to pray for Justin Bieber, whose mom, Pattie, is so thankful for our prayers. He has been getting some trouble from the press lately and they are feeling the pressure of being in the limelight as they travel through the Holy Land. (http://ca.news.yahoo.com/justin-bieber-says-besieged-paparazzi-israel-20110412-100439-634.html) Justin is only 17 and needs our prayers to stay on course and in the palm of the Lord’s loving and wise hand. To hear Pattie’s heart for prayer, click HERE: At the bottom of that page find our Twitter Link and tweet a prayer for Justin!

REQUESTS:
• Pray for the 64th annual Cannes Film Festival coming up this May 11 – 22nd in Cannes France. It is one of the world’s largest International Film Festivals and is attended by some of America’s most known film professionals. There are often Christians there who have a heart to reach out to those film stars who are often unapproachable here in Hollywood. Let’s pray for the hearts of the people attending, for the Lord to touch those who win and lose awards, and for the atmosphere to be full of the love of Jesus. For more information on the event click HERE.

• We thank God for the many Christians He has placed as salt and light throughout our industry. There are more committed believers in Hollywood than anyone outside our community realizes. So be encouraged and thank God with us for all He is doing here. We praise God this month for our friend Glen Keane, a Disney animator who has impacted every one of us through his work in creating Ariel, Tarzan, Pocahontas, Aladdin, The Beast and Rapunzel, to name only a few. He is a loving, generous Christian man who is a powerful example of Jesus in the workplace. Read this recent article on Glen in Christianity Today.

• The television Execs are headed toward the annual UPFRONTS this month: All the major networks are preparing for their meetings in NYC May 15 – 19th, where most of the major program sponsorship decisions for the new Fall TV season will be made. The UPFRONTS are when networks announce their new primetime schedules in a live show, including clips, sometimes extravagant musical numbers, comedic scenes and appearances by TV stars. The purpose for this event is to allow marketers, or sponsors, to buy commercial airtime “up front,” or several months before the TV season begins. Pray for the decisions made and for the decision-makers to have wisdom during this time. To read more about UPFRONTS click HERE.

• HPN wants our pray-ers to understand how destructive “celebrity” can be for most people. It is a curse more than a blessing. We don’t want to judge celebrities for their choices, but instead we want to pray that the Lord will protect them as they try to live a life of no privacy, full of gossip, pressure from fans, and excess that is hard to handle. We ask that you pray this month for the women who have won “Best Actress” Academy Awards, for they often find that their personal lives fall apart soon after winning their Oscar. For an interesting perspective click HERE.

• Pray for the new Christians who come into town to pursue a career in the entertainment industry and soon question whether they are meant to be here, if they have the talent needed to break in, or if it is even God’s desire for them to be here at all. What does a Christian do when they think they’ve been “called” to Hollywood, but nothing is working out? That’s a tough question that hundreds of people are asking every day as they try to pay their rent. Would you pray for the Christians to have wisdom to know what God’s BEST plan is for them? Click HERE to get a writer’s perspective.

• Please pray for Christians who are working successfully in the industry, and also standing strong in their faith. They have their own struggles that give them unique challenges. Let’s pray that they can balance their work with their personal lives and ministry, and be eternally effective in all areas. One person, our friend Mako Fujimura, is an artist in New York City and he is having not only an impact in the culture, but also in the lives of the people around him as he lives his life as a father, husband, artist, minister and friend. Click HERE to learn more about Mako as you pray for him and for other professionals like him.

FROM HPN MEMBERS:
• We are thankful for Bernie, from Illinois, who has graciously posted an article stating our passion for more men to be intercessors through our HPN “I to I” Prayer Partnership Program (http://hollywoodprayernetwork.org/new/I-to-I). We would love to have you read Bernie’s support of HPN and his desire to have more men who will pray and provide encouragement to more male Christian leaders in our community. HERE is the link to “MEN WANTED…”:

OPPORTUNITIES TO GIVE:
• HPN is officially partnering with RALPHS Grocery Store. They have graciously agreed to donate 2% of any participant’s total grocery bill to our ministry – at NO cost to you. Please sign up with Ralphs (which includes Kroger and Foodforless) in order to have them donate to us. This is a great way to help us raise funds, just by food shopping. We'd love to have you register. Just click on the Ralphs website HERE then scroll down to PARTICIPANT and click on “ENROLL” to sign up. You can either get a Ralphs card (which gives you discounts every time you shop) or just connect the HPN account to your existing Ralphs Card and you will automatically donate a minimum of 2% of your purchases to HPN! We would SOOOO appreciate your support. Our ministry is listed either by our title: Hollywood Prayer Network, or by our Ralph's Org. #: 92945. You will also benefit through the Ralphs discounts the card provides. Thank you so much for helping us. We deeply appreciate your effort to take this step of support.

• Check us out on Facebook and become our Friend! Click here and let us know who you’re praying for in the global entertainment industry: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=2252979785

UPCOMING EVENTS:

• HPN’s friend and member Sandra Lord hosts the popular, award-winning Hollywood Networking Breakfast on the last Thurs. of every month. Sandra has been faithfully connecting industry professionals and providing access to top Hollywood players through her breakfasts for over 17 years. Join them on April 28th at: http://www.changingimagesinamerica.org/hnindex.htm

• Come join the Christian community on Thursday night, May 5th for the National Day of Prayer. Find a gathering in your area or if you’re in the Hollywood area, come to Bel Air Presbyterian Church at 7:30 – 9pm for a wonderful celebration of our nation, our state, our city and the entertainment industry. For more info click HERE.

• If you want to go through one of Act One's summer training programs (Writing, Producing) you need to get in touch with them ASAP, as the deadline is fast approaching. Act One is entering it's 13th summer of top-notch training programs for Christians desiring to work in the mainstream entertainment industry. Check them out at www.actoneprogram.com, or contact them at info@actoneprogram.com or 323-464-0815.

• Arts & Entertainment Ministries is now accepting applications for their upcoming A&E Institute, equipping artists and creative professionals to think, live and create from a Christian worldview. To find out more, click HERE.

• As a special partner of Life Fest, our organization is able to offer our friends a FREE pass to TOMORROW’s (Saturday April 16) first-ever pro-life film festival being held in the LA Convention Center. (West Hall) 1201 S. Figueroa St. LA, CA 90015. Say you are a friend of HPN at the festival to get your FREE ticket. For more info about the festival, go to www.lifefilmfest.com

• For a list of other events happening in the Christian community, click HERE

Thanks so much for praying and keep praising God during this Easter season!

In Him,
Karen and Caren

-----------------------------------
TIP OF THE MONTH:
Even secular Grammy winners believe that they were “called” into this industry and get very spiritual about their careers. We’re all hungry for God and we want His approval. Click on “God at the Grammys: The Chosen Ones"

QUOTE OF THE MONTH in honor of her passing:
It is strange that the years teach us patience; that the shorter our time, the greater our capacity for waiting. ~Elizabeth Taylor

VERSE OF THE MONTH in honor of the National Day of Prayer:
“I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” Psalm 91:2

This message was sent from:
Hollywood Prayer Network
1763 N. Gower St.
Hollywood, CA 90028
United States

http://www.hollywoodprayernetwork.org/

© Copyright 2007 Hollywood Prayer Network

4/14/11

Is the World Falling Apart?

(from Perry Stone, Voice of Evangelism ministries)

Recently on the national news a commentator asked the question, “Is the world falling apart?” He was commenting on the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, the revolutions and uprisings in the Middle East, and the economic woes in America. The world is not falling apart, but the nations are experiencing a shaking that will eventually rearrange the world into a division that will open the door in time to come for the Biblical antichrist to take his throne.

The Egyptian revolution was allegedly about “democracy and economic opportunity.” When the dust was settled, there were no more jobs and there were still food shortages. Things became worse after the former President was expelled. When President Obama went on worldwide television and said that President Mubarak should step down, in the eyes of the leaders of Saudi Arabia, Obama actually dishonored the Egyptian President.

We must learn to spend quality time in the presence of God and believe that He is with us and has never left His people, and will continue to be with His people through the good and the bad.

This is something that is seen as the greatest act of disrespect in the Arab world. Since that time, the king of Saudi Arabia has turned his attention to both China and Russia, opening discussions with these two nations. I have read from inside sources that Mubarak has refused to take Obama’s phone calls since his departure from Cairo. There is now a great rift in the Gulf region between the kings of the Gulf and the U.S. administration. By overthrowing the leader of the nation, it creates a huge void and a question about who will take the leader’s place.

As I will be sharing in the weeks ahead in some of our major meetings, I believe this Middle East shaking is going to prepare these nations for the rise of the beast of Biblical prophecy. These nations that are revolting will soon realize that their newly appointed governments will not be successful in solving the problems. Eventually, one man will unite these disillusioned nations with his plan to solve the problems by defeating and conquering what he claims will be the “source” of the problem: Israel and the Jews. Then the world will enter into the time of tribulation predicted by the Biblical prophets.

We have been forewarned about the events occurring in the time of the end, and how that the times will become perilous and men’s heats will fail them for fear of looking after what is coming upon the earth. We must learn to spend quality time in the presence of God and believe that He is with us and has never left His people, and will continue to be with His people through the good and the bad. Always keep the end goal—heaven—on your mind. That thought is enough to encourage even the most discouraged person!


-Perry Stone
www.voe.org
www.perrystone.org

http://www.voe.org/Prophecy-Update/is-the-world-falling-apart.html

©2008 - 2010 Perry Stone Ministries

4/12/11

U.S. Senate to Vote on De-Funding Planned Parenthood and the Obama Health Care Law


UPDATE


Via NRLC (National Right to Life)(April 14, 2011) -- The U.S. Senate today defeated a bill to cut off federal funds to the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA), by a vote of 42 in favor to 58 opposed. The roll call is here.

The Senate also defeated a measure to cut off federal funds to implement the Obama health care law, by a party-line vote of 47 in favor and 53 opposed. The roll call is here.

**********************************************************************************
WASHINGTON (April 12, 2011) -- The U.S. Senate is expected to vote on Thursday, April 14, or Friday, April 15, on two special bills that are strongly supported by National Right to Life. Please follow the guidance below to call the offices of your two U.S. senators immediately to urge them to support these bills.

The first Senate vote will occur on House Concurrent Resolution 35, which would remove funding for the entire Obama health care law that was enacted in 2010. The Obama health care law contains multiple provisions that will, if fully implemented, result in government-imposed rationing of lifesaving medical care. In addition, the Obama health care law contains multiple provisions authorizing funding of abortion and funding of health plans that cover abortion.

The second Senate vote will occur on House Concurrent Resolution 36, which would cut off federal funds to the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) and its affiliates. (This bill is similar to the Pence Amendment that was adopted by the House of Representatives on February 19; this will be the first time that the Senate has voted on this issue.) PPFA is the nation’s largest abortion provider, reporting 332,278 abortions in 2009. It appears that abortion accounts for roughly one-third of the aggregate income generated by PPFA-affiliated clinics.

For more information on these two issues, please see the letter sent to the Senate by National Right to Life on April 12, posted here. (Note: The Senate cannot vote on the two bills until after the House of Representatives passes them, but that is likely to happen on April 14.)

Please call your senators today! Simply use the "Take Action Now" or "Call Now" box in this alert. When you enter your zip code, you will be shown the correct phone numbers to call for your two U.S. senators. You will also be shown a few short suggested "talking points" to use in your conversations with the senators' staff persons. In addition, you will be given an opportunity to easily send a short e-mail to National Right to Life, if you wish to do so, to report on how your call went.

Please call today, and ask your like-minded friends to do the same!


http://www.nrlc.org/

Manna Fest w/Perry Stone - Understanding Difficult Sayings of Jesus & Prophetic Objects from the Time of Christ

In "Understanding the Difficult Sayings of Jesus" (from 2010) Perry teaches from Israel about some of the sayings of Jesus that can be difficult to understand. In modern times, we don't have the same knowledge of certain sayings that people would have been familiar with in the time of Christ. So, Perry explains what it all means.

Video Link: http://media.voe.org/2213953

In "Prophetic Objects from the Time of Christ" (from 2009) Perry again is teaching from Israel. He gives us a tour of different places and shows us some objects from the time of Christ which Jesus and John the Baptist spoke of in the Bible; particularly in Matthew 24, 25. This gives us a visual image of those items.

Video Link: http://voe.sermon.tv/2213888

www.perrystone.org
www.voe.org

4/10/11

Jack Van Impe Presents: President Obama's Faith

Jack and Rexella Van Impe address the issue of President Barack Obama's faith. Why do 50% of Americans question if Obama really is a Christian? Is he a Christian or not? What does he believe in? Jack Van Impe sets the record straight. Now, I was not one of those people that said 'Oh he's not a Christian' because I really didn't know. But, I did question it. After seeing this program which addresses the issue, which shows quotes from Obama himself, it is clear that Obama is not professing true Christianity. It appears that Obama either isn't sure on what the Bible teaches and doesn't understand what it takes to be saved, or he does know and simply rejects it.

In an interview with the Chicago Sun-Times, he was asked what he believes in. He said, "I'm rooted in the Christian tradition, but there are many paths to the same place, heaven." (True Christianity teaches that there is only way way to Heaven and that is Jesus John 14:6). Later, when asked if he believes in heaven, he said, "I don't presume to have knowledge about what happens after I die." (True Christianity teaches that there is indeed a very real place called Heaven and that if you are saved then you can have confidence that you will go there). When asked who Jesus is to him, he said: "A historical figure, a bridge between God and man, a wonderful teacher." (Okay, but what about Lord and Savior of the world? Actually, come to think of it, sounds like a mix of different religious beliefs in there). In USA Today, he said, "I can't accept the idea of hell. I don't respect the bigotry of the Apostle Paul in the Book of Romans." (There are hundreds of instances in the Bible where it mentions hell. Jesus taught and warned that hell is a real place and that many people go there. The Apostle Paul wasn't a bigot at all. All he did was preach the Word as he was moved by the Holy Spirit).

What Obama is saying is not Christianity at all. His grandparents, who spent part of Obama's life raising him, were Baptists/Methodists and turned to the unitarian church later in life. The unitarian church does not teach Biblical doctrine. None of this surprises me now. What is the point in all of this? The ultimate point is that we need to pray for Obama and his family. I don't know his heart and I don't know him personally, but it's obvious from his statements that he is way off.

Part 1


Part 2


http://www.jvim.com

Ezekiel 38 & 39: Prophecy of the Future

Ezekiel 38

A Message for Gog

1 This is another message that came to me from the Lord: 2 “Son of man, turn and face Gog of the land of Magog, the prince who rules over the nations of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him. 3 Give him this message from the Sovereign Lord: Gog, I am your enemy! 4 I will turn you around and put hooks in your jaws to lead you out with your whole army—your horses and charioteers in full armor and a great horde armed with shields and swords. 5 Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya[a] will join you, too, with all their weapons. 6 Gomer and all its armies will also join you, along with the armies of Beth-togarmah from the distant north, and many others.

7 “Get ready; be prepared! Keep all the armies around you mobilized, and take command of them. 8 A long time from now you will be called into action. In the distant future you will swoop down on the land of Israel, which will be enjoying peace after recovering from war and after its people have returned from many lands to the mountains of Israel. 9 You and all your allies—a vast and awesome army—will roll down on them like a storm and cover the land like a cloud.

10 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: At that time evil thoughts will come to your mind, and you will devise a wicked scheme. 11 You will say, ‘Israel is an unprotected land filled with unwalled villages! I will march against her and destroy these people who live in such confidence! 12 I will go to those formerly desolate cities that are now filled with people who have returned from exile in many nations. I will capture vast amounts of plunder, for the people are rich with livestock and other possessions now. They think the whole world revolves around them!’ 13 But Sheba and Dedan and the merchants of Tarshish will ask, ‘Do you really think the armies you have gathered can rob them of silver and gold? Do you think you can drive away their livestock and seize their goods and carry off plunder?’

14 “Therefore, son of man, prophesy against Gog. Give him this message from the Sovereign Lord: When my people are living in peace in their land, then you will rouse yourself.[b] 15 You will come from your homeland in the distant north with your vast cavalry and your mighty army, 16 and you will attack my people Israel, covering their land like a cloud. At that time in the distant future, I will bring you against my land as everyone watches, and my holiness will be displayed by what happens to you, Gog. Then all the nations will know that I am the Lord.

17 “This is what the Sovereign Lord asks: Are you the one I was talking about long ago, when I announced through Israel’s prophets that in the future I would bring you against my people? 18 But this is what the Sovereign Lord says: When Gog invades the land of Israel, my fury will boil over! 19 In my jealousy and blazing anger, I promise a mighty shaking in the land of Israel on that day. 20 All living things—the fish in the sea, the birds of the sky, the animals of the field, the small animals that scurry along the ground, and all the people on earth—will quake in terror at my presence. Mountains will be thrown down; cliffs will crumble; walls will fall to the earth. 21 I will summon the sword against you on all the hills of Israel, says the Sovereign Lord. Your men will turn their swords against each other. 22 I will punish you and your armies with disease and bloodshed; I will send torrential rain, hailstones, fire, and burning sulfur! 23 In this way, I will show my greatness and holiness, and I will make myself known to all the nations of the world. Then they will know that I am the Lord.

Footnotes: Ezekiel 38:5 Hebrew Paras, Cush, and Put.
Ezekiel 38:14 As in Greek version; Hebrew reads then you will know.


Ezekiel 39


The Slaughter of Gog’s Hordes

“Son of man, prophesy against Gog. Give him this message from the Sovereign Lord: I am your enemy, O Gog, ruler of the nations of Meshech and Tubal. 2 I will turn you around and drive you toward the mountains of Israel, bringing you from the distant north. 3 I will knock the bow from your left hand and the arrows from your right hand, and I will leave you helpless. 4 You and your army and your allies will all die on the mountains. I will feed you to the vultures and wild animals. 5 You will fall in the open fields, for I have spoken, says the Sovereign Lord. 6 And I will rain down fire on Magog and on all your allies who live safely on the coasts. Then they will know that I am the Lord.

7 “In this way, I will make known my holy name among my people of Israel. I will not let anyone bring shame on it. And the nations, too, will know that I am the Lord, the Holy One of Israel. 8 That day of judgment will come, says the Sovereign Lord. Everything will happen just as I have declared it.

9 “Then the people in the towns of Israel will go out and pick up your small and large shields, bows and arrows, javelins and spears, and they will use them for fuel. There will be enough to last them seven years! 10 They won’t need to cut wood from the fields or forests, for these weapons will give them all the fuel they need. They will plunder those who planned to plunder them, and they will rob those who planned to rob them, says the Sovereign Lord.

11 “And I will make a vast graveyard for Gog and his hordes in the Valley of the Travelers, east of the Dead Sea.[a] It will block the way of those who travel there, and they will change the name of the place to the Valley of Gog’s Hordes. 12 It will take seven months for the people of Israel to bury the bodies and cleanse the land. 13 Everyone in Israel will help, for it will be a glorious victory for Israel when I demonstrate my glory on that day, says the Sovereign Lord.

14 “After seven months, teams of men will be appointed to search the land for skeletons to bury, so the land will be made clean again. 15 Whenever bones are found, a marker will be set up so the burial crews will take them to be buried in the Valley of Gog’s Hordes. 16 (There will be a town there named Hamonah, which means ‘horde.’) And so the land will finally be cleansed.

17 “And now, son of man, this is what the Sovereign Lord says: Call all the birds and wild animals. Say to them: Gather together for my great sacrificial feast. Come from far and near to the mountains of Israel, and there eat flesh and drink blood! 18 Eat the flesh of mighty men and drink the blood of princes as though they were rams, lambs, goats, and bulls—all fattened animals from Bashan! 19 Gorge yourselves with flesh until you are glutted; drink blood until you are drunk. This is the sacrificial feast I have prepared for you. 20 Feast at my banquet table—feast on horses and charioteers, on mighty men and all kinds of valiant warriors, says the Sovereign Lord.

21 “In this way, I will demonstrate my glory to the nations. Everyone will see the punishment I have inflicted on them and the power of my fist when I strike. 22 And from that time on the people of Israel will know that I am the Lord their God. 23 The nations will then know why Israel was sent away to exile—it was punishment for sin, for they were unfaithful to their God. Therefore, I turned away from them and let their enemies destroy them. 24 I turned my face away and punished them because of their defilement and their sins.
Restoration for God’s People
25 “So now, this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I will end the captivity of my people[b]; I will have mercy on all Israel, for I jealously guard my holy reputation! 26 They will accept responsibility for their past shame and unfaithfulness after they come home to live in peace in their own land, with no one to bother them. 27 When I bring them home from the lands of their enemies, I will display my holiness among them for all the nations to see. 28 Then my people will know that I am the Lord their God, because I sent them away to exile and brought them home again. I will leave none of my people behind. 29 And I will never again turn my face from them, for I will pour out my Spirit upon the people of Israel. I, the Sovereign Lord, have spoken!”

Footnotes: Ezekiel 39:11 Hebrew the sea.
Ezekiel 39:25 Hebrew of Jacob.

New Living Translation (NLT)

Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright© 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
If you mess with Israel, you will face God's wrath.

4/9/11

Hidden Meanings Revealed in the First Verse of the Bible

The first verse of the Bible is Genesis 1:1, which says: "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth."


Taking the Hebrew letter pictographs and translating those meanings from the first verse of the Bible (which was originally written in Hebrew) it says this: "The Son of God will be destroyed (or killed) by his own hand on a cross."


"In the beginning (time) God created the heavens (space) and the earth (matter). Scientists now know that the basic components or makeup of the universe are time, space and matter. However, the Genesis 1:1 text revealed this over 2000 years before scientists determined this to be true.

7 is a number that is used in the Bible to represent completion or perfection. In the world there are 7 continents, 7 oceans, 7 colors in a rainbow, 7 notes on a musical scale, 7 stars in the Big Dipper which has been used to point to the Northern Star aka Guiding Star since the most ancient of times, 7 objects in our solar system are visible to the naked eye (sun moon mars mercury jupiter venus saturn), 7 digits in a row has been proven over and over to be the average limit of memory for most human beings, 7 metals of antiquity upon which civilization was based (lead tin copper mercury silver gold), periodic table of elements consists of 7 distinct levels, and on and on the 7's in the world around us go, each representing God's divine touch of completion. Genesis 1:1 contains 10 words in the English, but in the original Hebrew there are 7 words with 7 features of the number 7.

4/8/11

Abortion and Birth Control: an Agenda for Black Genocide?

This is a controversial subject. The idea that organizations such as Planned Parenthood could be tied to such "conspiracies" as black genocide and attempting to wipe out "unfit" people and races is a large claim. But, is there any truth to this? I often receive "Defund Planned Parenthood" action alert petitions through my email from various Christian and anti-abortion organizations. But, why Planned Parenthood? What are they doing that is so wrong? Do they even perform abortions at their centers? Oddly enough, in my speech class a young man gave his "persuasive speech" presentation on supporting Planned Parenthood/Family Planning. He made it a point to assure the class that the organization 100% in no way performs abortions at their clinics. Then, why do I get so many action alerts from these Christian and anti-abortion organizations? What is the connection? Well, although I have heard that Planned Parenthood does not perform abortions at their clinics, the actual Planned Parenthood website tells otherwise. Their website states that "abortions are available at many Planned Parenthood health centers, clinics, and the offices of private health care providers." So, yes, there is an obvious connection with abortion. They of course also offer various forms of birth control. I also noticed that the language they use on their website concerning the question of abortions for those who are under 18 comes across as pretty swaying. It's as if they are encouraging those who are under 18 and want an abortion to make that possible. However, the history of Planned Parenthood goes back much further to a very controversial past, beginning with its founder Margaret Sanger and connection to the Eugenics movement in early 20th century America. This is where the idea of black genocide and eugenics comes in. In order to understand these claims a study on the history of the organization and origin of birth control contraceptives needs to be given a deeper look.

What is eugenics? The word "eugenes" is Greek and means "well-born." The term "eugenics" was coined in 1883 by English scientist Francis Galton. Eugenics is "the study of methods of improving the quality of the human race, especially by selective breeding" (Dictionary.com). A more detailed description explains that eugenics is "the study of or belief in the possibility of improving the qualities of the human species or a human population, especially by such means as discouraging reproduction by persons having genetic defects or presumed to have inheritable undesirable traits (negative eugenics) or encouraging reproduction by persons presumed to have inheritable desirable traits (positive eugenics)" (Random House Dictionary). An outright blatant definition of eugenics is "the study of hereditary improvement of the human race by controlled selective breeding" (American Heritage Stedman's Medical Dictionary).

Maafa 21 is a project by Life Dynamics, an anti-abortion organization, that believes in the existence of a 150 year agenda to end the black population in America through abortion and birth control. “Maafa” (ma-a’fa) is Swahili for “tragedy” or “disaster.” “21” is for the 21st century. Hence, Maafa 21.

Whatever the claims, a look into the history of these organizations and their current practices should at least make one question if there is an agenda of genocide or the attempt to control the breeding of a part of the population. Is it factual and does the agenda still live on today, whether knowingly or unknowingly, by those involved within those systems?

Rod Parsley and Maafa 21 Expose Black Genocide from Abortion

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Kb3jg4IesQ
http://orders.rodparsley.com/Order_First.aspx?ostr=EWb385ahcCo%3d&gl=1

Maafa 21 Trailer

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zLnNi_qb7nY
http://www.maafa21.com/
http://www.lifedynamics.com/

Abortion: Black Genocide in 21st Century America (Part 1/13)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3B2YG7vtwXA&feature=related

Maafa 21 The History of Eugenics In America Part 1 of 13

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ASrFufnMNDg

Copyright © 2011 • Breakthrough with Rod Parsley • All Rights Reserved.

Voice of the Martyrs Prayer Update for week of april 8, 2011

The Voice of the Martyrs USA: www.persecution.com

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. Ephesians 6:10–11

Saudi Arabia—Eritrean Believer Faces Possible Death Sentence—Release Eritrea

Psalm 5:11
But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You;
Let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them;
Let those also who love Your name
Be joyful in You.


An Eritrean Christian faces a possible death sentence after being accused of preaching to Muslims outside a mosque in Saudi Arabia. Mussie Eyob, who converted to Christianity two years ago, was arrested at a mosque in the Haya Roda area on Feb. 12 and is being held at a high-security prison in Jeddah. Officials initially thought Mussie was mentally ill, but a medical examination found him to be in good mental health. Mussie’s family visited him on March 20 and found that although he had lost weight, he was being treated well and was in good spirits. Mussie began preaching at the Eritrean Embassy on Feb. 9 before moving on to the local mosque days later. Pray that God will soften the hearts of Saudi officials toward Mussie and that he will not be sentenced to death. Praise God for Mussie’s boldness.

Egypt—Christian Convert Escapes Egypt—VOM Canada

2 Corinthians 1:8–9
For we do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, of our trouble which came to us in Asia: that we were burdened beyond measure, above strength, so that we despaired even of life. Yes, we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead.


An Egyptian man who has been in hiding for two-and-a-half years fled the country recently with his daughter. Maher El-Gohary, 58, had been in hiding since August 2008, when he filed a suit requesting to change the religious status on his ID card from Muslim to Christian. He and his daughter, Dina Mo’otahssem, 17, flew from Cairo to Syria in February. Maher had hoped to obtain a visa to the United States, where his wife lives, but he tried for one week and was unsuccessful. He then sought assistance at a U.N. office in Syria and was granted an appointment for late April. Although Maher and Dina are safer in Syria than they were in Egypt, they still spend much of their time in their apartment because converts from Islam to Christianity are persecuted in Syria. Maher has no income, so he and his daughter have difficulty obtaining basic necessities. During this time of struggle, Maher continues to acknowledge God’s enduring care. “Without God’s love, we would have been dead by now,” he said. Thank the Lord for the ways in which he has provided for Maher and Dina. Pray that they will continue to rely on his strength and not on their own.

Belarus—Pastor Charged After Church Raid—Forum 18 News

1 Peter 5:10
But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.


On Feb. 13, police raided a Baptist church in Gomel, Belarus, and charged the pastor with “holding an unauthorized religious service.” The pastor, Nikolai Varushin, faces a fine of up to $345 if found guilty. The police major in charge of the raid said police had received repeated complaints about the church from nearby residents. Police officers filmed the worship service and confiscated CDs, audio cassettes of sermons and religious literature. In January 2008, Pastor Varushin was fined for leading an unregistered religious organization. Pray that the congregation will remain steadfast in faith as they undergo this trial.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

4/7/11

Manna Fest w/Perry Stone - Guarding the Threshold of Your House

Video Link: http://voe.sermon.tv/Manna_fest/2221750

Perry teaches on ridding the house of sin and overcoming the enemy by applying the blood of the Lamb and the word of your testimony. This is receiving Jesus into your heart and confessing He is your Lord. Perry uses Scripture and historical references to explain the processes that the ancient Israelites would do, through God's instructions, to purge their homes of sin and guard the threshold of their homes from evil. House here refers to both the physical house and the temple of the Holy Spirit (your Christian self). The heart is an entrance way to either good things or evil things. "You need to know where you stand with the Lord...if you've never found peace with God, if you've never accepted a redemptive covenant that forgives you of your sin and guarantees you with eternal life find Christ today and call on His Name."

1) Inspect the house.
2) Sanctify the house by applying the blood of the Lamb and the word of your testimony.
3) Guard the doorway.

www.voe.org

4/6/11

Creation in the 21st Century - Crunch the Numbers

Carl Baugh talks in his studio with John Heffner. They put the theory of evolution to the test of mathematics. http://www.creationevidence.org/

Part 1


Part 2


Part 3


© 2008 by CEM. All Rights Reserved. www.creationevidence.org
For non-commercial, educational use only.

4/4/11

Clear Israel’s Name: Withdraw Flawed Report

(from ACLJ.org) It was a rush to judgment - a deeply flawed report accusing Israel of war crimes in a conflict in Gaza in 2009.

As Israel launched a defensive military operation against Hamas terrorists who were killing innocent Israeli civilians, the international community criticized Israel - and an error-filled investigative ''Goldstone Report'' was issued, claiming Israel was guilty of war crimes.

Friday, the author of the Goldstone Report, Judge Richard Goldstone, recanted his initial findings - making it clear that Israel did nothing wrong in defending itself and never intended to target civilians in the conflict. It is Hamas, not Israel, that has a policy of attacking innocent civilians.

So today the ACLJ - along with its international affiliate, the European Centre for Law and Justice (ECLJ) - is calling on the United Nations (U.N.) to rescind the report.

Stand with the ACLJ and demand that the U.N. rescind this erroneous report without delay. Sign our online Petition to Rescind the Goldstone Report now.

Judge Goldstone's stunning reversal clearly underscores the fact that it is time to put this deeply flawed and biased report to rest. From the very beginning, the ACLJ argued that the damaging allegations against Israel were false and without merit. The author of that report now admits that there was no evidence that Israel deliberately targeted civilians while, as he stated, ''it goes without saying'' that Hamas did indeed intentionally target civilians. It's time for the United Nations to rescind this report and close its unfounded inquiry against Israel without delay.

Judge Goldstone wrote an opinion editorial published over the weekend in the ''Washington Post,'' saying in part, ''if I had known then what I know now, the Goldstone Report would have been a different document.''

Goldstone now admits there was no evidence to suggest that Israel ''intentionally targeted'' civilians during the conflict. At the same time, Goldstone admits that Hamas - unlike Israel, which spent tremendous resources conducting its own investigation - did nothing to investigate its own crimes, which, as Goldstone now concludes, ''were intentional ... its rockets were purposefully and indiscriminately aimed at civilian targets.''

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is calling for the Goldstone Report to be withdrawn: ''Goldstone himself said that all of the things that we have been saying all along are correct - that Israel never intentionally fired at civilians and that our inquiries operated according to the highest international standards. Of course, this is in complete contrast to Hamas, which intentionally attacked and murdered civilians and, naturally, never carried out any sort of inquiry. This leads us to call for the immediate cancellation of the Goldstone Report.''

Now it's time to set the record straight. There's no stronger evidence than the author of the damaging report now admitting he got it wrong. Writing an opinion editorial is one thing, but what Judge Goldstone needs to do is formally withdraw the report at the U.N.

The ACLJ and ECLJ presented both written and oral arguments defending Israel's actions during the Gaza conflict. In January 2010, we filed a written statement and supporting memorandum on our analysis of the Goldstone Report with the U.N. Human Rights Council. In those filings, we highlighted the systematic biases throughout the Goldstone Report and its failure to adhere to U.N. guidelines and the International Bar Association Guidelines for proper and objective fact-finding.

Stand with Israel. Sign the online Petition to Rescind the Goldstone Report now.

Thank you!

Sincerely,

Jay Sekulow
ACLJ Chief Counsel

4/3/11

Hal Lindsey Report - 1948 'Hinge of History'

Part 1

from "News from Hal Lindsey Ministries"
This week on 'The Hal Lindsey Report'
I'm going to examine one of the most pivotal years in history: 1948. You'll be amazed at the sheer number and scope of events that occurred or inventions and entities that were developed in that critical year -- all of which are necessary to the fulfillment of Biblical prophecies concerning the end of this Age. I believe 1948 was the year in which God's final countdown clock started ticking. In fact, I believe it is modern history's turning point. Many of the events and accomplishments of 1948 began to set the stage for the final days of this Age. But the most critical event by far, and the one that makes all of the others important in the prophetic scenario, was the birth of the modern nation of Israel. I'll discuss why that miraculous milestone alone qualifies 1948 as the 'Hinge of History.'

Don't miss this week's "Report" on TBN, Daystar, Inspiration, CPM Network, various local stations, www.hallindsey.com or www.hischannel.com

God Bless,

Hal Lindsey
mail: HLMM, P.O. Box 470470, Tulsa, OK 74147
email: comments@hallindsey.com
web: http://www.hallindsey.com


Part 2


This week on 'The Hal Lindsey Report'
First, let me thank you for your wonderful response to last week's rebroadcast of "1948: Hinge of History, Part One." It's been more than three years since we aired that program and I've received many requests asking us to replay it. I'm glad we were finally able to honor your wishes.

On this week's edition of "The Hal Lindsey Report," I continue my examination of 1948. I believe it is modern history's turning point. Last week, we reviewed some of the crucial events of that incredible year. We also looked at some of the inventions and global entities that sprang to life in 1948. Many of the events and accomplishments of 1948 began to set the stage for the final days of this Age. But the most critical event by far, and the one that makes all of the others important in the prophetic scenario, was the birth of the modern nation of Israel. This week, I'll discuss why that miraculous milestone alone qualifies 1948 as the 'Hinge of History.'

Don't miss this week's "Report" on TBN, Daystar, Inspiration, CPM Network, various local stations, www.hallindsey.com or www.hischannel.com

God Bless,

Hal Lindsey
mail: HLMM, P.O. Box 470470, Tulsa, OK 74147
email: comments@hallindsey.com
web: http://www.hallindsey.com

4/2/11

Manna Fest w/Perry Stone - Cain's Blood at the Church's Door

Part 1

Manna-Fest with Perry Stone #533 "Cain's Blood at the Church's Door" (2010-12-24)

Part 2


Part 3


The overall theme here in this episode is bringing life out of death. Perry teaches on the symbolism of Cain's blood and mark on certain people in the Church today. Then he talks about the importance of words, and how both positive and negative words affect people. He also talks about the physical body and the spiritual symbolism that can be found in our created bodies, such as the heart. Finally, a woman comes out and gives her testimony that references this topic. Another example of how deep God's majesty and revelation is on creation and our lives. Pretty interesting.

www.voe.org

Is Genesis 1–11 a Derivation from Ancient Myths?

by Steve Ham, AiG–U.S.
March 29, 2011
Apologetics

In a culture where God's Word is constantly under attack from those both inside and outside of the church, we must always be ready to give a defense for the hope that is in us. This web series on Apologetics is designed to give you the tools required to defend the faith.

When faced with the question as to whether the Bible accurately records ancient history in Genesis 1–11 or was derived from some other "ancient" document, we first need to apply a solemn reminder. God's Word has made the ultimate and justifiable claim for itself that none of these other ancient texts has made. The Bible repeatedly asserts to be the perfect Word of God (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:21; Psalm 19:7, 119:160). If the Bible borrowed from ancient mythologies, this claim would be called into question.

The Issue

All over the world we find cultural legends and myths that closely resemble certain accounts in Scripture, such as the Creation, the Fall, the Flood, and the Tower of Babel accounts. Oftentimes, these accounts are used as an external confirmation of the credibility of Scripture.

If one accepts the account of Scripture that we are all of "one blood" (Acts 17:26), he should also accept the biblical account that all human heritage goes back to the city of Babel where all human population once lived after the global Flood of Noah's day. We would expect to find common accounts of history (such as Creation and the Flood) within the stories and traditions of today's people groups that once lived together in one place after the great Flood. Given years of cultural diversity as mankind spread throughout the world, it is also not surprising that these stories have taken on their own cultural influences in the retelling.

In the mid-1800s within the buried cities of the Ancient Near East (including Nineveh and Nippur in present day Iraq), several excavations uncovered a whole library of tablets from earlier Mesopotamian times. Within these finds and upon the tablets were lists of kings, business archives, administrative documents, and a number of versions of the flood epic. Each version varied in language form and completion (most were only partially intact) with the most complete being the Babylonian collation of The Gilgamesh Epic. On its eleventh tablet was a narrative about the great Flood, and much of its detail shows similarities with the biblical account of the Flood. Rather than being used as a confirmation of biblical credibility, however, many have attempted to use these tablets as a reason to doubt the authority of God's Word because some of them supposedly predate the earliest times of biblical authorship (predating Moses). Some have concluded that with this supposed predating, along with storyline and some language similarity, the biblical accounts are a derivation from earlier Sumerian legends. Some have suggested the history in Genesis is also a form of earlier Jewish mythology in the same manner as the Middle Eastern texts.

Many have used these documents as reason to doubt the authority and inspiration of the Word of God. Some have used these documents to reject Moses as the writer of Genesis, and some have used these documents to suggest that Genesis itself is either myth, poetry, or even simply an argument (a theological polemic) used as a rebuttal of these supposedly older myths.

The Fallible Versus the Infallible

Only two conclusions can come from a study evaluating if the Bible is a derivation from ancient mythology. 1) If this is true, biblical claims of God's inspiration and His perfect Word are untrue, and the Bible cannot be trusted. 2) The Bible truly is the Word of God, and any other claim of authorship or external influence is false.

How we view Scripture has great bearing on how we view the reliability of the gospel of Jesus Christ on which the whole of Christendom is centered. When we read the claims of Scripture, we are left with no room for compromise. The Bible claims all of Scripture comes from God and not of human will. The Bible also claims a perfection in God and of His Word, and any inconsistency or blemish is intolerable to biblical inerrancy and God's infallibility. At the end of the day, this comes down to the claims of fallible men versus the claims of the infallible God.

Today, some scholars seek to understand the Scripture through a "comparative" study approach, looking for parallels in texts and culture as a way of interpreting Scripture. This means the scholars use external documents to interpret Scripture in their light rather than starting with Scripture to shed light on the external documents. Like every other issue of biblical compromise, it comes down to starting points.

If the significance of finding these documents in Nineveh and Nippur has caused some to doubt the authority of Scripture, the issue can only be an interpretation problem. We should always remember the Bible is the inerrant and infallible Word of God, and it should be allowed to interpret itself and the evidence rather than permitting the evidence to interpret Scripture.

The Significance of the Find

The library of tablets from Nineveh and Nippur was an amazing find, and at the time the significance was not even known. In fact, not until decades later did the deciphered tablets show a version of the Flood account similar to what we find in Genesis. The two most significant items sharing any commonality to biblical history (even if loosely) were the versions of the flood epic and the list of Sumerian kings, of which in particular interest are a list of pre-flood kings.

While these documents have many similarities with biblical history, there are also many differences. In these contradictions biblical history sheds light on its own authentic history and authority. Only the Bible has a consistent logic to its account.

The Dating and Source Dependence of the Documents

The supposed dating of the tablets found range from 2200 to 620 BC. God gave the Law to Moses during the wilderness wandering in the fifteenth century BC. Dating these Sumerian documents as being written even up to 800 years before Moses wrote the account of Genesis does not automatically mean that Genesis was derived from these Sumerian records.

Three possible reasons exist for the consistencies between these documents and the Bible:

1. These Sumerian documents were derived from the original Hebrew text (but are skewed and inaccurate).

2. The Hebrew text was derived from these documents (but was corrected in the process).

3. Both are separate accounts of commonly known history.

One cannot make a definitive choice between the first and third options, but the second option requires an irrational leap. When historical accounts are passed down, unless great care is taken to avoid it (such as has been taken with the biblical record), the records are usually embellished as time goes on, so the history becomes more and more distorted. The second option would require the writer to weed through numerous embellished and legendary accounts to produce the inspired record. Some might claim that God directed Moses throughout the process, but the author would need to sift through scores of texts in multiple languages just to find the scraps of inspired material in each. If one needs to invoke such divine intervention, it makes far more sense to accept the traditional view and obvious solidarity of God's whole inspired text.

Even as we look at the Babylonian flood epic, we find differences within the various Middle Eastern versions that have been uncovered. H. V. Hilprecht from the University of Pennsylvania in 1909 (Hilprecht was part of the University's Babylonian expeditions and excavations) uncovered the earliest fragment of the flood epic. After carefully uncovering and translating each cuneiform character, Hilprecht made the following statement: "In its preserved portion, it showed a much greater resemblance to the Biblical Deluge Story than any other fragment yet published."

Hilprecht's statement helps us understand the ongoing corruption of the Babylonian story compared to the authentic preservation of the biblical account and does not support the conclusion that the Near Eastern mythology should be attributed as the primary source of the biblical account. The inconsistencies within the texts themselves point to an unsurprising lack of reliability in using them as a gauge on the authenticity of the biblical account.

The Pre-Flood Kings

A brief look at just a few particulars of both the Sumerian kings list and the flood epics will show the many inconsistencies that forfeit any consideration of Babylonian myth as a source for Scripture.

The list of pre-flood Sumerian kings has some curious similarities to the list of patriarchs in Genesis. For example, Genesis and the Sumerian list both refer to the Flood. Both refer to men of great ages, and when the differing numeric systems are considered, they provide similar totals. The lists, however, have three significant differences:

1. The ages and lengths of reigns of the Sumerian kings are much longer than that of the biblical patriarchs, as some of the Sumerian kings supposedly reigned for more than 30,000 years. After discovering the Sumerians used a sexagesimal system5 rather than a decimal system of counting, the longer life spans in the Sumerian list are converted to a very similar number with the life spans of eight correlating patriarchs in the biblical account.

2. The Sumerian kings list has only eight in the list while the Bible gives 10 patriarchs before the Flood (including Noah). Although a close correlation exists between these lists, it seems the Sumerian list has omitted the first man and the man who survived the Flood (Adam and Noah). The similarities between the other eight men make this a reasonable consideration.

3. The Bible has a clear difference in the quality of information, the spiritual and moral superiority of the patriarchs, and the completeness of the list. The Genesis account explains in great detail the struggle of mankind with sin and the effects of the Curse. It highlights those who walked with God and also provides details about humanity apart from the patriarchs. Such detail is not found in the Sumerian kings list.

While a study of the Sumerian list is a fascinating journey in discovering the way Sumerians looked upon their ancestry and how their numeric and commercial systems worked, the quality of the biblical text is distinctly superior in both completeness, information, and spiritual and moral quality. The biblical text does not reflect a borrowing from an inferior text. If anything, the very mention of this kings list that matches so closely to the biblical account is a confirmation of biblical authenticity.

The Flood Epics

The Near Middle Eastern Flood epics have three main versions: the Sumerian Epic of Ziusudra, the Akkadian Atrahasis Epic, and the Babylonian Gilgamesh Epic. The Gilgamesh Epic is the most complete with 12 tablets decipherable and the eleventh tablet with the most complete flood account of the three versions.

After great bitterness over losing his friend Enkidu, Gilgamesh seeks Utnapishtim (the Babylonian equivalent of Noah) to give him the secret of immortality. Utnapishtim tells him of the gods' desire to flood the world because they could not sleep for the uproar of mankind. Ea, the god of wisdom, warned Utnapishtim in a dream to convert his house to a boat, take in the seed of all living creatures, and tell the people he was building a boat to escape the wrath of the god Enlil. Utnapishtim built the boat in seven days and took in family, kin, creatures both wild and tame, and all the craftsmen. The great flood came, and even the gods were terrified of it and fled. For six days and nights, the flood overwhelmed the world and on the seventh day grew calm. The boat rested on Mt. Nisir, and Utnapishtim sent out a dove, then a swallow, and then a raven. When the raven didn't return, he made a sacrifice, and the gods gathered like flies over it.

These flood epics reveal many internal inconsistencies, which rule them out from being the source of the Genesis text.

The Difference Is in the Detail

The Bible specifically states that Noah took two of every kind of land-dwelling animal and seven of some animals onto the Ark. The Genesis account is clear and realistic when comparing the animals and the size of the Ark. The Gilgamesh Epic is an unreliable account because it states Utnapishtim was to take the seed of all living creatures, both wild and tame, that he had available. This leaves us with no information about how many animals were likely on board the boat or whether all of the necessary kinds would have been represented for repopulation. The Bible is specific concerning the Ark's animal cargo:

You shall take with you of every clean animal by sevens, a male and his female; and of animals that are not clean two, a male and his female; also of the birds of the sky, by sevens, male and female, to keep offspring alive on the face of all the earth. (Genesis 7:2–3, NASB)

The detailed biblical account explains that the Flood began as all the fountains of the great deep broke open, that it covered the whole earth to the extent of the highest mountains, and that it killed every man and land dwelling, air breathing animal of the earth (Genesis 7:21–22). The biblical detail shows that the whole earth was covered by water coming from both above and below and that it rained continuously for 40 days and nights and the waters continued to rise until the 150th day. The Gilgamesh Epic, while stating the devastation of the flood on humanity, does not specifically detail the full geographical extent and depth of the Flood. Also, it is unreasonable to expect so much water coverage in just six days of rain.

The biblical dimensions of the Ark are detailed and consistent with a vessel that could float in rough waters and could house the animals described. The dimensions of the boat in The Gilgamesh Epic amount to more of a cube shaped vessel with the beam equaling the length. Although we know it had seven stories (decks), it is impossible to determine the full size of the vessel. Logistically, this boat could not float in a stable manner in rough seas and would not be structurally reliable.

The Bible is consistently reliable on the account of the birds that were released. It is logical to send out a raven before a dove, given that ravens are scavengers while doves feed only on plants. The intervals of release of the dove are consistent with the expectation of having a drained land for vegetation and occupants, and this correlates with the dove returning with a freshly picked olive leaf and then the dove not returning at all. By contrast, The Gilgamesh Epic mentions a dove, then a swallow, and finally a raven. There are no intervals mentioned to assess the appropriate time length for flights, and sending a raven last is questionable in that ravens may have been able to survive as scavengers.

The Character of the "Gods"

In The Gilgamesh Epic, the gods are impatient and impulsive. They do not like the uproar and babel of mankind and decide to destroy humanity. The gods have no justifiable moral reason to destroy humanity. In contrast, the God of the Bible sent the Flood on an already cursed world because of man's wicked heart that only desired evil. God's judgment in the light of sin is righteous and just.

The Babylonian gods lie and tell Utnapishtim to lie to other humans about the coming wrath. The Gilgamesh Epic promotes polytheistic mythology, whereas the Bible presents monotheistic theology. The many gods in The Gilgamesh Epic differ in ideas and motivations, and they seek to thwart each other. The God of the Bible is holy, pure, unchanging, and cannot lie. These are just a few of the character differences between the biblical God and the description of the gods in the Babylonian myth.

Lastly, it is important to note that in The Gilgamesh Epic the god Ea tells Utnapishtim to save himself through the ark by means of deceiving the other gods. In the Bible God Himself provides the plans for the Ark as the means to save Noah and his family. Furthermore, Noah was a preacher of righteousness rather than deceit (2 Peter 2:5).

Even based solely on comparison between the perfect Word of God and the imperfect pagan myths, it is absurd to think the descriptions in the Babylonian texts could be the source of the Genesis account in the inspired Word of God.

Conclusion

It is not difficult to rule out the Ancient Near Eastern mythological texts from being the source of influence for the account of Genesis. While Genesis is reliable, they are not. While Genesis shows consistency of our God's righteous and sovereign character, the mythological texts show the gods as little more than squabbling people, deceiving each other and humanity and lacking sovereign control. While the Genesis Flood account gives enough credible information to allow for historical and geological confirmation, the mythological texts provide little that can be confirmed, and what is provided does not make sense logically or scientifically.

The similarities among Ancient Near Eastern mythologies and between The Gilgamesh Epic and the Bible make sense from a biblical worldview. Christians should not be surprised to see people groups all over the world with their own accounts of the Creation, the Fall, the Flood, men of great ages, and even the Tower of Babel. The accounts can tell us people once had the same record or eyewitness of a common event handed down from a generation that was once congregated in the same place at the same time.

The Gilgamesh Epic tells a sad tale of a man (who was supposedly part god) looking desperately for everlasting life. This was a man who knew of great men of old who lived long lives and supposedly became gods, and he wanted to attain this status himself. He had a desperate desire to avoid death. A Christian can hear tales such as this and consider them in light of biblical truth. The Bible shows us that men did indeed live for longer periods of time, but as mankind became further distanced from a perfect original creation, life expectancies shortened. The Bible reveals the devastation of sin in the judgment of death and mankind's continual need for a Savior. The Bible gives us the account of the worldwide Flood that covered the entire earth and shows both God's faithfulness in judgment and in salvation by protecting a line of humanity for the promised Messiah.

In the light of Scripture, we see confirmation in mythology around the world that the Bible is indeed God's Word and the only reliable truth. In the message of God's Word, we see Him stepping into this world and taking upon Himself the wrath we deserve. Only through the consistent Word of the Bible can we know salvation is only received through faith in Jesus Christ alone.

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Footnotes

Stephanie Dalley, translator, Myths from Mesopotamia: Creation, the Flood, Gilgamesh, and Others (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009).
The Epic of Gilgamesh, translated by Andrew George (New York: Penguin Books, 1960).
Ira M. Price, The Monuments and the Old Testament, 2010 reprint (Valley Forge, PA: Judson Press, 1905).
H. V. Hilprecht, The Babylonian Expedition of the University of Pennsylvania (1910), 35).
A sexagesimal system is based on the number 60 and allows for easy division into various fractions for trade and other purposes.
For more information, please see Nozomi Osanai, "A Comparative Study of the Flood Accounts in The Gilgamesh Epic and Genesis" at http://www.answersingenesis.org/home/area/flood/introduction.asp. Accessed February 22, 2011

http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/2011/03/29/derivation-from-ancient-myths#