Rapture Ready

Nearing Midnight

We Are Living in Violent Times

It is stunning how violent American society has become in the last few years. What is most saddening is how quickly we become desensitized to the new level of violence. We wonder what has become of society when someone murders 30 people at a university, and then we are all the more dismayed when someone murders a larger number of people in a gay disco and then a country music concert.

The 1959 Clutter murders are a very useful milestone in showing how violent our nation has become. In Cold Blood is a non-fiction novel by American author Truman Capote, first published in 1966; it details the murders of four members of the Herbert Clutter family in the small farming community of Holcomb, Kansas.

It's amazing to realize that the killing of four individuals was able to captivate the nation for several years. Today, the murder of four or more family members occurs several times a year.

Last month, seven people were killed in the Tennessee community of Westmoreland. Michael Lee Cummins, 25, is suspected of killing six people in one home and a seventh victim at a second location. All seven victims were beaten to death by Cummins, including his parents and a 12-year-old girl. Even though this was the deadliest homicide event in Tennessee in at least 20 years, it hardly got any news coverage. The newsrooms in New York collectively decided that no one cares about the deaths of a bunch of Tennessee hicks.

It's not just the quantity of murder that shows how bad things are getting. Where it takes place reflects on the rising level of violence. When I was young, it never entered your mind that you would face gunfire in a house of worship. Sitting in a pew, the general view was that you had an equal chance of being hit by a meteorite as being hit by a bullet.

The unthinkable has become reality as religious centers are now fair game for violence. In seven months' time there have been two major shootings at synagogues: the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburg and the Chabad of Poway synagogue near San Diego.

Another thing that needs to be noticed is the change in the nature of the person behind the gun. Going back to the In Cold Blood killers, Richard Eugene "Dick" Hickock and Perry Edward Smith were ex-convicts recently paroled from the Kansas State Penitentiary. It is easy to see why they turn to murder and robbery. John Earnest was the gunman in the Poway synagogue shooting. He had no criminal record. He described himself this way: "I'm just a normal dude who wanted to have a family, help and heal people, and play piano." It is just pure madness for Earnest to say he needed to kill Jews because there is "no other option."

The liberal media deserve much of the blame for the normalization of violence. It has a set agenda for downplaying bloodshed. The nation of Mexico has had record murder rates in 2017 and 2018. The press covered up the violence because it didn't want Pres. Trump to be able to cite the stats as justification for his wall. The liberal media don't have a logical reason for why they minimize the violent acts of Muslims. The press does this because it is run by evil people.

2 Timothy 3:1:3 warns us "that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves..." and "Without natural affection." One of the most distressing examples of the lack of natural love is parents that murder their own children. This week I ran across a story about a stepfather who intentionally shot his daughter in the chest with a pellet gun because she stole food. I was dumbfounded that this man thought this nearly fatal form of child abuse was the proper way to administer discipline.

God is in full control of all world events. As we get closer to the tribulation hour, the Lord is slowly granting Satan more freedom. We won't know what level of wickedness will trigger the rapture, but know it must be very near.

"The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved" (2 Thessalonians 2:9-10).

-Todd Strandberg


Never again!...?

While platitudes flow from the political left, claiming that their ideology as the most compassionate, the most tolerant, it's U.S. Mecca is showing otherwise. As a matter of fact, the city that never sleeps has apparently awakened in ways thought headed for extinction.

Antisemitism is manifesting significantly in New York City, according to a report by the New York Police Department. The report claims a tremendous rise in crimes against Jews and in acts involving crimes of hate in general.

The New York Police Department has reported a massive increase in anti-Semitic hate crimes in the city, with the data showing an 82% increase in such incidents in the first three months of 2019. The Anti-Defamation League's 2018 audit of anti-Semitic incidents published earlier this week found that there was an even bigger rise of anti-Semitic hate crime in New York State - an increase of 170% from the third to the fourth quarter of 2018.

In the latest in the ongoing series of incidents of harassment and assault against Jews in New York, a passerby spat at and cursed a Jewish man in Brooklyn on Wednesday, an incident which was captured on video and published on social media.

"The data released by NYPD today is deeply disturbing and should serve as an important reminder to all of us that we must continue to be vigilant in the face of hate," said Evan R. Bernstein, ADL NY/NJ Regional Director. ("Massive 82% spike in anti-Semitic hate crimes in New York City, NYPD finds," by Jeremy Sharon, Jerusalem Post, May 3, 2019)

Such rise of antisemitism is not unique to New York. Our news sources have been parading such reports for years across our daily headlines. The percentage of incidents have ratcheted up in hockey-stick fashion across the globe during recent weeks.

The breakout of hatred for Jews, not coincidentally, comes during time of a tremendous rise in Islamic populations across Europe and other places. All one has to do is to consider the dynamics taking place within the U.S. House of Representatives to understand that America and the world face troubles just ahead. They are troubles that are prophesied in God's Word.

Rants against Israel and, tacitly, against the Jewish race by a newly elected Muslim congresswoman give focus to the mounting evidence of the coming time of Jacob's trouble (Jeremiah 30:7). The rants come from an elected representative whose constituency views Israel and Jews as the central catalyst for most all the problems across the world. The Democrat Party Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi-and, for that matter, all of those in Congress-can't or won't govern the Muslim woman's caustic rhetoric against Israel and Jews.

They, instead, do everything to accommodate her wants and needs as a Muslim-for example, throwing out rules against headwear while in session, allowing her to wear her Islamic headdress.

They tolerate her vitriolic spewing of hate, while they and the mainstream media do their best to cover up any mention of Muslim involvement in the many jihad attacks that have been inflicted on thousands throughout the recent decades. We are castigated by those media types anytime we mention the words "Islam" or "Muslim" in conjunction with such hate crimes. We remember recently when both Shepard Smith and Neil Cavuto of FOX News cut off guests when they mentioned Islam as a problem within this context.

American presidents and American congressional members throughout the years since the conclusion of World War II in 1945 joined the Israelis in echoing their declaration, "Never again!"

So, what is happening? The dynamics have changed. The tolerance seems only for those who are adamantly against the Jews-and, for that matter, against Christians. The left goes deafeningly silent when Christians across the world are persecuted, tortured, and murdered. These same "tolerant" within Washington officialdom go ballistic when Israel does what is necessary to protect its people. Muslims should, these anti-Israel political ideologues shout, be allowed to do whatsoever they wish to the Jewish military forces defending the country, because they are being oppressed and kept from taking over their rightful homeland-though Israel's right to the land is based on longstanding biblical and historical facts.

All of this points to the coming second holocaust-the one that will be instituted by Antichrist, planet earth's final and most terrible tyrant.

The pledge "Never Again!" in regard to saying genocide against the Jewish people will never again be allowed will be overruled for a short time by the beast of Revelation 13. But, the God of Heaven says "Never Again!" too. We can be assured that pledge will be kept. Israel will never again be removed from her land. Israel will survive and thrive to become the head of all nations for Christ's millennial reign.

"Behold, he that kept Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep" (Psalms 121:4).

-Terry James

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