The Powerful Little Word

Rev Paul HoffmasterMany of the Biblical promises rest upon the action of the reader or hearer.  The little word “if” plays a big role in experiencing the Word.  In the Bible, this two letter word contains the option to either accept or reject the Word.  The Word of God is limited to man’s response.  The Scripture lies dormant until man responds to its content.  If man chooses to ignore the Word, it becomes nothing more than a conglomeration of phrases and sentences hidden under a book cover.

Reading a glowing book

The Living Word of GOD -Connecting the dots of the history of mankind

If it was not for the Bible, we would have no knowledge of God and His love for mankind.  If it was not for the Bible, we would not be aware of Jesus and His earthly ministry.  If it was not for God’s Word, we would never come to the knowledge of what Calvary was all about.  Without the Scriptures, man would be like a ship without a rudder, a car without an engine, or a plane without wings.  Without His Word, man would flow with the tide of changing opinions and life styles.  Without the Bible, mans’ hope for purpose will never be achieved.  Sixteen times in the book of Hebrews, this powerful word highlights the responsibility of the individual.  In chapter three, verse six, the Believer is likened unto a house that is built by Jesus; but if, by the actions of Christians, the world sees a creation that is no different from its own life, what would draw it to seek our building Contractor?  There are a lot of “prefab” Believers that build their faith around convenience and self-fulfillment, and, as a result, turn off prospective “buyers” of the Faith.  The problem is many treat the salvation experience as an “upgrade” to their lives instead of as a total rebirth experience. Continue reading

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Revelation 9

(Plus a quick review)

The last book of the Bible - Revelations

In our study of Revelation, chapter nine is about the 5th and 6th angel and what happens when their trumpets sound. We recently completed our discussion of the 4 Apocalyptic Horsemen via the first 4 seals of the scroll being opened. As dangerous and attention getting as they are, things are about to get more difficult for mankind, earth and any of its inhabitation. The pre-event of chapter 9 is what John heard as he recorded in the last verse of chapter 8:

(8:13b) “Woe! Woe! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth, because of the trumpet blasts about to be sounded (in chapter 9 & 10) by the other three angels!” (NIV; emphasis mine)

Paul Benware wrote in Understanding End Time…, the first four of the seven seals are known as the four horsemen of the Apocalypse. The first seal introduces the Antichrist (Revelation 6:1-2). The second seal causes great warfare (Revelation 6:3-4). The third of the seven seals causes famine (Revelation 6:5-6). The fourth seal brings about plague, further famine, and further warfare (Revelation 6:7-8) and the dividing of ¼ of the earth to death, famine, reduction, enslavement, . The fifth seal tells us of those who will be martyred for their faith in Christ during the end times (Revelation 6:9-11). When the sixth of the seven seals is broken, a devastating earthquake occurs, causing massive upheaval and terrible devastation—along with unusual astronomical phenomena (Revelation 6:12-14) [emphasis mine]

A series of 7 trumpets begin to call out their judgments at the opening of the 7th seal. Then, “ALL OF HEAVEN FALLS SILENT FOR THE SPACE OF A HALF AN HOUR” (8:1). This silence in heaven sends awesome chills as heaven has never been totally silent per anything mentioned in scripture. It is much like walking into a room or into the woods and everything is suddenly too quiet. We KNOW (YADDA) something is amiss or about to happen; it is not usually a good feeling of confidence on earth but all beings in heaven see God’s judgment will no longer be delayed. Satan’s time has run out and he knows it.

  1. Trumpet #1: (8:7) …hail, fire mingled with blood with a third part of the trees burned and all green grass burned.
  2. Trumpet #2: (8:8) …great volcano and mountain cast into the sea with a third part of the sea turning to blood. This is death to the sea creatures and ships in that part of the seas.
  3. Trumpet #3: (8:10) …’death star’ (possibly a huge meteorite) is cast to earth from the heavens. Now a third part of the rivers and spring water sources become wormwood (apsinthos: in a metaphorical sense, to be made bitter). Many (polos/polus) die due to the bitter or deadly water likely infected or made bitter by the shattering of this meteor into dust.
  4. Trumpet #4: (8:12) … Now the third part of our know universe that is stricken is the sun, moon and stars. This darkness makes night even darker and daylight less illuminant.
  5. Trumpets 5, 6, & 7 are God’s judgments on man.

This takes us to chapter 9 in Revelation; the 5th angel and trumpet. All the damage to this point by the blowing of the first four trumpets is upon physical surroundings. One-third of everything we know of and see is struck. The woe, woe, woe, in 8:13b is a change in venue. It is now mankind that is directly punished for rejecting warnings and pleadings to accept and follow Jesus Christ (New Testament) and God (Elohim) of Israel (Old Testament).

We read in Revelation 9:1, as found in a previous article in this website, about a falling star. The verse reads “…to him was given the key to the bottomless pit.” Since this star (as-stare’ in the Greek) is identified as “him,” we likely have either a fallen or falling angel; suggestion: Satan himself is finally removed from approaching the Throne of God in Heaven. [Revelation 12:10: This verse points to the already given fact that Satan “…has been hurled down” from heaven]. He uses the key he is given to open the bottomless pit. From it belches smoke; locusts emerge from the smoke to cause severe pain to man; to all who “do not have the Seal of God in their foreheads.” They are not *given the power to inflict death even though later in chapter nine we read that mankind call for death and can’t get it.

*given the power: Note that these locusts do not possess the power in or of on their own, but are given it with **limitations. This is God’s hand at work as the final hours of the earth as we know it closes.

**Limited to causing pain on man for 5 months, but not the remaining greenery of earth as is the usual target of locust.

Verse 6 is very clear. “…man shall seek death and shall not find it.” Verses 7-10 describe these creatures of torment. Interestingly, in verse 10 of chapter 9… “they have a king over them.” When Satan rebelled against God and took 1/3 of the angels with him, for he was a mighty angel (angel of the morning light and beautiful), he became the lord and king over the fallen angels. They obey him for he is powerful, persuasive, and dangerous to oppose. One might speculate that the locust might be the hoard of fallen angel-locusts who emerge from the smoke. Satan knows by now that his time of roaming to and fro on and over earth (his kingdom) is over. 1 Peter 5:8; Job 1:7) tell us that Satan has been at work since the creation of earth; seeking who he may… bring joy??? Not a chance. He is seeking who he may devour: inflict pain, sickness, disease, casualty, conflict, stress, confusion, disjointedness, mistrust, the road to destruction! (James 1:17; Acts 10:38; John 9:2-3))

The locust is the first of the three woes that John heard from an angel in heaven (8:13). I must hasten to point out Greek grammar. In 9:1 it is too often concluded that the “bottomless pit” in this particular scenario is hell itself. This does not fit well considering the final judgment, Lake of Fire and the locations of Hades or Sheol. The word used here is Phrear. It is an old word for cistern or well; something with a small mouth; narrow. The path to hell is a wide road. This misunderstanding simply does not fit. It is not Hell that this “fallen angel” opens the gate with a key. It is more closely related to Hades or Sheol; a holding tank of sorts for the dead yet to be judged. Hell and the Lake of Fire come into play after the Great White Throne Judgment. This is found at the end of the Millennial Reign of Christ on earth.

The second woe, beginning at verse 13, comes when the sixth angel blows his trumpet. This releases the four angels assigned and created solely for this purpose (v15); the second woe. One third of mankind is slain; those without the Seal of God in their forehead. It is a massive army of (evil forces) 200,000,000 strong. Fire, smoke (as in choking gases; chemical warfare?), and brimstone are the weapons of death in these few verses. This is not the massive army of mankind who assemble at Har Mageddo (Valley of Jezreel; Armageddon) to battle Jesus in Jerusalem after the 7th Trumpet is sounded.

In the closing two verses of chapter 9, we discover that even after all of this, men do not repent of their selfish and self-seeking gains (idols). In short, their continued rejection of God, Christ, and the Holy Spirit is finally judged. This continual rejection of God/Christ is amazing. The people who continue to reject Christ see that those with the Seal of God are not touched by these plagues. Such being so seems to anger mankind all the more to fully realize their pain is not shared with followers of the Almighty.

Next article begins with…”And I saw another mighty angel…” (Chapter 10 and in my opinion should not have a chapter break for number 11. Of course, these are man-made markers in the Bible as the author of Revelation, John, did not mark out chapter and verse.)

jStark3

Archeological Digs

On September 28, 2015 while continuing my 2-year archeological dig at the Murphy Jameshistorical Land of Kysor (park), I unearthed what is believe to be a third battle field. It is assumed this to be the traditional site where two rival tribes, using their 9 or 10 best warriors would engage in the clubbing of projectiles thrown at them thrown at them by a machine.

One at a time these very young and brave warriors would step in front of this machine. Each tribe member could defend with only a round long stick and quick reflexes. The machine was backed up by 9 or 10 members of the other tribe. Each tribe had a unique name. The goal, I believe, was to take out three of the opposing tribe at a time.

This ancient ritual included a dug out. Tribal members and reserve forces could hide while watching one of their tribal members step onto the field to wage battle with that machine. Some would be asked to “self-sacrifice.” Each youthful sacrifice would be met with cheers as another tribal member who had distracted the other tribe by hitting the projectile would advance further behind the lines of the opposing tribe.

This excavation continues. A box in the ground found next to the high ground mound shows where this tossing machine was tethered. If a tribal member was successful at defending him or herself with this rounded stick, s/he would then race behind enemy lines. Opposing tribal members would then throw the same projectile at the one who successfully hit it; all without further assistance from the tethered machine.

Over the past two years two other battle fields have been discovered and are now excavated. Those interested in this ancient ritual are welcome to visit and use these ancient fields of battle.

I have amassed significant information during my archeological digs as ancient tribal members stop by to share their experiences with the machine and opposing tribes. Some had sons or daughters who did self-sacrifice for their tribe. We must remember them and train future warriors.

The Living Word of GOD -Connecting the dots of the history of mankind

The Living Word of GOD -Connecting the dots of the history of mankind

Archaeological digs are very similar to deep study of the Bible. The more of this ancient history book we dig into, the more we realize it makes a lot of sense. One can’t dig just one hole in a research. The dots need to be connected by discovery digging. Eventually the dots connect themselves.

Longing For That Day…

Do you love someone so much that you never want to be apart? Do you have a heartheart to heart connection with someone?  Do you long to see their smile or feel their warm embrace? It’s a joy to hear them laugh and see him/her walk through the door!  The times you spend together are the Best moments of your life. When a person completes you and you complete him/her it is like heaven on earth. There is a longing to be with each other.

Can you imagine being with and loving someone for so long that it seems like forever? Then something happens that separates you. Each day you go through the motions, do your duties and even do them with joy but inside there is a longing for that day when you will be together again.

There is another One Who loves you like that and so much and more.

Jesus came to earth to do the will of His Father. He was with His Father since before the beginning of time. Imagine the physical torture, the mental anguish, and the rejection of men during the time He was on the Cross. He changed history and our destiny. For the first time ever, His Father had to turn His back on Him because all the sins of the world were placed on Him as He hung and died on the cross. Jesus, the perfect sacrifice for our sins – had to be separated from His Father. The pain and torture of death on the cross pales in comparison of that of being separated from the One Who loves him. But the Joy of obedience and making a Way for you to be saved was worth it all.

Hebrews 12:2-3 NASB who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Jesus rose again on the 3rd day, redeem us from sin and is ALIVE now. Do you jesushugknow Jesus? Without Christ, you will never experience love like the love of GOD and His Presence. This I know, not just because my Bible tells me so… because I experience His love. When you choose to accept Jesus as your LORD and Savior you will know LOVE for yourself.  And One day we will be absent from our bodies and present with the LORD — no more longings.

http://peacewithgod.net

–McKee