Ted’s Remarks About Stuff
January thru March, 2018

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Mar. 31, 2018

15-second slideshow

Today is the first full day of the week of Pesach or Passover, which began at sunset last evening.  There also was a full supermoon early this morning.  This day is a commemoration of the exodus of Israel out of Egypt, as described in Exodus 12:1-51.

Just as lambs were slain on the first and subsequent Passovers, the Lamb of God, Yeshua/Jesus, also died on Passover.  His shed blood atoned for the sins of all who will accept His unique sacrifice on their behalf.  According to John the Baptist and the apostle Paul,

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29)

For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. (1 Corinthians 5:7b)

His death, of the righteous for the unrighteous, is the only thing that can bring us to God the Father.  According to the apostle Peter,

Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. (1 Peter 3:18)

There are clear links between the life, death, resurrection and future return of Yeshua/Jesus and the feasts and holy days of Israel.  (See more in Chapter 4 and Chapter 5 of my online book.)  More connections also can be found in my Good Thursday commentary.

The church I attend had a very nice Passover seder last night.  Messianic Passover services typically are on Friday during Passover week, since most Christians commemorate Jesus’ crucifixion on “Good Friday.”  However, I believe that the crucifixion was on Good Thursday).

Both the Jewish and the Messianic/Christian seders incorporate a “haggadah,” which is the text that sets forth the order of the seder.  The MessianicSeder.com site shows a haggadah that is representative of a Messianic Seder.  While Yeshua/Jesus is not mentioned in a traditional Jewish Passover seder, He is mentioned several times during the Messianic seder, such as here:

Get rid of the old yeast that you may be a new batch without yeast—as you really are.  For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. (1 Corinthians 5:7)

The cups of red wine or grape juice at the seder signify the blood Jesus shed for us.  The matzo or matzah (unleavened bread) is not made with yeast, which is a representation of sin in the Bible.  As believers, we are to get rid of the old sin (“yeast”) in our lives and be new “batches of bread” without yeast.  Our Messiah/Christ, who was sinless, was sacrificed as the ultimate Passover Lamb for us.

The matzo also has stripes and is pierced with holes.  Messianic Christians see this bread as representative of the body of Jesus, who was flogged (causing stripes) and nailed to a cross (creating holes in his wrists and feet).

He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his stripes we are healed. (Isaiah 53:5)





75-second slideshow

Indeed, Yeshua/Jesus our Passover Lamb was slain, and He lay in the tomb during the first few days and nights of the Feast of Unleavened Bread.  Fortunately for us, He did not remain there; He rose from the dead on the Feast of Firstfruits = Resurrection Day (Easter Sunday).

He is in heaven now waiting to return to earth, at which time He will sit on his throne in Jerusalem.  There, He will rule and reign as King over all the earth.  I hardly can wait.

Mar. 30, 2018

Middle East mapThis is “Palestinian Land Day” in Gaza.  It is an annual event protesting Israel’s “confiscation” of their land.  Thousands of Palestinians have gathered at five different locations along the border fence between Israel and Gaza.

Marches are taking place in Jerusalem, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and Egypt.  Anti-Israel protests, demonstrations and other activities are scheduled to continue through May 15, the day after the commemoration of the Israeli Declaration of Independence on May 14, 1948.

Organizers had said that the 6½-week “march of return” would be peaceful.  Instead, however, they already have turned violent, with Palestinian protestors throwing rocks and flaming tires at Israeli soldiers.  In turn, Israeli troops have opened fire on the instigators, resulting in numerous deaths and hundreds of injuries.  I expect these numbers to go up.

At least 7 killed as Palestinians,
Israelis clash on Gaza border

Mar. 29, 2018

I last posted an email message from Valerie Moody on Mar. 27.  Today, her email message is “Dark and Light of Passover.”  Passover begins tomorrow evening at sunset.

Dark and Light of Passover

Mar. 28, 2018

For some time, I haven’t had much time to respond to emails about topics at my website.  Here are three that I answered some time ago and finally have gotten around to translate them into a web page format:

Mar. 27, 2018

Christ's crown of thorns on the crossI receive occasional emails from Valerie Moody.  I typically unsubscribe from most email lists, but I remain on Valerie’s because I like her information and thoughts.  Also, I do not have the time to read through emails that are lengthy and rambling, which hers are not.

The subject of today’s email is “Thorns and Passover.”  Tsaniym is the Hebrew for thorns.  On Passover (which begins in a few days, at sunset on Mar. 30), a crown of thorns was set onto the head of Yeshua/Jesus (Mark 15:17) before they crucified Him (15:24).

The thorns were a token of the curse of sin.  It was our sins that Jesus, the Lamb of God (John 1:29,36), bore in His body on the cross (1 Peter 2:24).  Jesus Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed (1 Corinthians 5:7).

Valerie points out how thorns are comparable to “enemies of the Most High” God.  Thorns also equate to the “aspirations of wicked men, with scratching, piercing, and affliction.”  Using the thorns of sin, the proxies of Satan continue to seek the complete destruction of Israel and to prevent the Kingdom of God from being established on the earth.  Ultimately, neither endeavor will succeed.

Thorns and Passover

Mar. 26, 2018

Stock Market Activity Mar. 26, 2018Last week was the worst week in the U.S. stock market in two years.  This followed news that the U.S. would impose tariffs on China and restrict the transfer of technology to Chinese firms.

However, now there are indications that the U.S. and China are open to negotiations to avert a trade war.  China's government has said it is open to negotiating with Washington.  This caused the market to have its biggest one-day point gain, 669.40 points, since 2008.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) was up 2.84% to 24,202.60, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 2.72% to 2,658.55.

Dow Jones Industrial Average: 24,202.60.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index: 2,658.55.

The extreme volatility in the stock market for the past couple of months seems to be related to a great deal of emotional variability within American society.  This appears to be increasing.

It looks like all it’s going to take is some exceptionally bad news for the market to crash suddenly through the floor.  With things so unstable in the U.S. government and in the world at large, this very well could happen much sooner rather than later.

Mar. 25, 2018

This is “Palm Sunday,” the day that Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey.  This was prophesied to take place centuries before it happened:

Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion!  Shout, Daughter of Jerusalem!  See, your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey. (Zechariah 9:9)

As Yeshua/Jesus, the Messiah/Christ, passed by, the people who had witnessed the countless miracles He had done shouted,

“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”  “Hosanna in the highest!” (Matthew 21:9)

A few days later on Passover, Jesus our Passover Lamb was sacrificed.  He was the Lamb of God who took away the sins of the world (John 1:29).  See more details in parallels between Jesus and the Passover lamb.

Mar. 24, 2018

At Olive Tree Ministries today, Jan Markell, Tom Hughes and Mark Henry talked about the increasing division within the United States of America.  It is looking more and more like the result of this division will be what Jesus described in Matthew 12:25 and Mark 3:24: “Any kingdom divided against itself cannot stand.

The U.S. is becoming increasingly divided politically, socially, religiously, racially and in other ways.  Division is a natural result of sin and straying away from God and His righteous commandments.

God desires, and has every right to be, the center of everyone’s focus.  He will greatly bless those who obey His commandments, ordinances and precepts.  However, He becomes very angry when the people of a nation do the following:

  • turn away from Him rather than from their evil ways,
  • fail to observe His commands and decrees, and
  • worship their own idols and natural things rather than Him.

Ancient Israel exemplified what happens when a nation rejects God, and the people indulge in their own sinful practices: 2 Kings 17:7-23.  It can happen to them again.  Arguably, all the nations of the world, including the USA, are on the same path.  The apostle Paul gave a cogent summary of how people will be in the last days:

But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days.  People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—having a form of godliness but denying its power.  Have nothing to do with them.  They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over weak-willed women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires, always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth.  Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so also these men oppose the truth—men of depraved minds, who, as far as the faith is concerned, are rejected. (2 Timothy 3:1-8)

Division within a nation (or a city or a family) is a natural result of sin.  In the ancient books of the Bible, it can be seen that God distanced Himself from Israel when they, as a nation, sinned against Him.  Whenever they persisted in doing this long enough, His dreadful judgment and punishment would fall upon them.  My sign of Jonah section continues to come to mind.

God gives people over to their own selfish desires, and then their depravity just increases after that.  What happens to America next probably depends on whether the nation, as a whole, repents and turns back to God—which is very doubtful.

At the end of the age, as Jesus’ return draws near, God’s wrath and subsequent judgment on the nations of the world, including the USA, seem inevitable.  Today’s audio program, lasting 57 minutes, can be heard here:

America: A Kingdom Divided Against Itself — Audio

I do feel that Jan Markell, Tom Hughes and Mark Henry made many valid points today.  However, I do not agree with their perspective about a Pre-tribulation Rapture taking place just prior to the final 7 years of this age.  I do, however, leave open the possibility for a “firstfruits” Mid-tribulation Rapture, taking place on a Feast of Firstfruits.

My views about the Rapture can be found in my two-part commentary here: The Rapture.  Some of my email responses to people’s Rapture questions can be found here: Rapture Questions & Responses.

Mar. 23, 2018

After the U.S. House passed a whopping $1.3 trillion spending bill yesterday, it also was passed in the Senate late last night.  This morning, President Trump indicated that he probably would veto the 2,232-page bill.  Had he done so, the U.S. government would have been shut down at midnight.

However, this afternoon, Trump made a public announcement indicating that he reluctantly had signed the mammoth legislation.  He said that in order to secure an increase in military spending, he also had to agree to provide money to Democratic projects that were a “wasted sum of money.”

Many conservative members of Congress objected to the size and cost of the bill.  They also disapproved of the bill’s failure to remove funding for Planned Parenthood and so-called “sanctuary cities.”  I agree with all of that.

Trump did say that he never would sign another spending bill like this again.  I am not at all convinced of that.

Trump signs spending
bill, blasts Congress

Not long after Trump’s public address, the stock market began another sell-off.  It was similar to yesterday’s decline, although not as much.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) was down 1.77% to 23,533.20, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was down 2.10% to 2,588.26.  The Dow has declined 11.6% since its all-time high of 26,616.71 on Jan. 26.  This qualifies as a market correction, since it is a decline of greater than 10%.

Dow Jones Industrial Average: 23,533.20.  Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index: 2,588.26.

Mar. 22, 2018

Stock Market Activity Mar. 22, 2018The greatest point drop in history of the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), –1,175.21 points, took place on Feb. 8, with the second greatest point drop ever, –1,032.89 points, on Feb. 5.

Today’s point drop was the fifth greatest ever: –724.42 points.  (The third and fourth greatest drops were -777.68 points on Sep. 29, 2008, and -733.08 points on Oct. 15, 2008.)  With the Dow closing today at 23,957.89, it is a 9.99% decrease from the all-time high of 26,616.71 on Jan. 26.  This makes it only 0.01% away from an official market correction of 10%.

The big sell-off came after Trump announced that the U.S. will impose tariffs on China and restrict the transfer of technology to Chinese firms.  According to Trump, these tariffs on China could be as high as $60 billion.  Evidently, that made the market pretty nervous.

Dow Jones falls 724 points after
Trump announces China tariffs

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) dropped –724.42 points today, the third greatest point drop ever.

Another factor causing some of the market decline may be upcoming probes into Facebook by the Federal Trade Commission and several states.  This is due to a collection of over 50 million Facebook users’ private information, without permission, by Cambridge Analytica.  I’ll never understand why people include so much of their personal information on Facebook and on other social media sites.

An additional factor in the Dow drop probably was the passage, by the U.S. House, of a $1.3 trillion spending bill today (with the Senate probably passing it tomorrow, or else there will be a government shutdown).  That makes me extremely nervous, as the “spending can” just continues to get “kicked” further down the road, especially with the U.S. national debt surpassing $21 trillion on Mar. 16.

Mar. 21, 2018

The Austin bomber has been identified as Mark Anthony Conditt, 23.  Early this morning, while in his car and being surrounded by officers of the law, he blew himself up with a bomb and died.

So far, it appears that Conditt acted alone in his horrendous series of bombings this month.  Authorities continue to search for a motive.

Everything we know about the 23-year-old
Austin bombing suspect, Mark Anthony Conditt

Mar. 20, 2018

Spring began today at 9:15 a.m. PDT = 12:15 p.m. EDT.  It is the Spring Equinox, when the daylight hours equal the nighttime hours.

After today, the hours of light will increase and the hours of darkness will decrease each day until June 21 (the Summer Solstice).  Then the pattern will reverse.

Spring and Autumnal Equinoxes

Mar. 18, 2018

In today’s election, Vladimir Putin was re-elected as the president of Russia.  He won the presidential elections in 2000, 2006, 2012 and now in 2018.  So he has been re-elected to another six-year term.

Putin claims crushing victory
in Russian presidential vote

Mar. 17, 2018

Although I am not Catholic, I do have some Irish ancestry.  I also have friends who celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.  So to all that do, I hope you have a fun and happy day.  In case you have some tasty food, please send me some attached to an email. 

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Mar. 16, 2018

U.S. National Debt ClockThe national debt has surpassed a whopping $21 trillion.  A little over six months ago, on Sep. 8, 2017, it went over the $20 trillion mark.

So the debt it is going up by unimaginable leaps and bounds.  This should be very concerning to Americans and, indeed, to the whole world.

National debt hits $21 trillion

There is no possible way that this national debt ever will get paid off, even if it were to freeze at its present amount.  Furthermore, anyone who thinks that this rocketing debt is “no big deal” is living in an idealistic, candy cane fantasy.

Mar. 14, 2018

Stephen Hawking, perhaps the best-known theoretical physicist and cosmologist of all time, has died at age 76.  With one of the most brilliant minds in human history, I always felt it was unfortunate that he rejected the existence of God—the one who gave Hawking the amazing mind that he had.

Stephen Hawking, famed
physicist, dead at 76

Mar. 13, 2018

President Trump announced early this morning that he has fired Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State.  He will nominate Mike Pompeo, the director of the CIA, to replace Tillerson.

Trump also will nominate Gina Haspel, who currently is the deputy director of the CIA, to be the CIA’s director.  If confirmed by the Senate, she will be the first female director of the CIA.

Trump fires Tillerson, taps
Pompeo as next secretary of state

Mar. 12, 2018

Locations of three recent package bombs in Austin, TexasIn Austin Texas, where I have some friends, three package explosions have taken place this month.  Two of them were today, and the other one was on Mar. 2.

In each case, a package was left at the front door step of three different homes.  After the packages were retrieved by residents of the homes, they exploded.

A man, 39, was killed on Mar. 2, and a boy, 17, was killed this morning.  Others were injured by the explosions.  No arrests have been made, and investigations are ongoing.

In each case, the packages were not delivered by the U.S. Postal Service nor by private mail carriers.  There are similarities among the three incidences; perhaps the same person is behind each of the explosions.

Governor Greg Abbott’s office is offering a reward of up to $15,000 for information leading to the arrest of those involved in the deadly package blasts.  Austin police chief Brian Manley urged Austin residents not to open suspicious packages and to call 911 if they see any unusual packages at their homes.

Austin package explosions leave teen dead,
women hurt after three blasts in 2 weeks

Potentially, something like this could become a “copycat” crime that spreads to other places.  I certainly hope not, but the warning not to open suspicious packages should be heeded by people nationwide.  Basically, if you did not order something, but a package appears outside your front door, do not open it.

Mar. 11, 2018

In most of the United States (except Hawaii and most of Arizona), and in some other parts of the world, time has “sprung forward” an hour today.  These regions observe Daylight Saving Time, where the sun will rise an hour later in the mornings but set an hour later in the evenings.

Daylight Saving Time begins

Mar. 10, 2018

Daylight Saving Time begins tomorrow in most of the United States.  At 2:00 a.m., the time will become 3:00 a.m.

I like the fact that there will be an extra hour of daylight at the end of the day for about 8 months.  However, I don’t particularly enjoy losing an hour of sleep the first night.

Therefore, at noon today, I set my watch and the clocks in the house and in my car an hour ahead.  So I will be adapting to the new time the rest of the afternoon and evening.

Moreover, I will get my full amount of sleep tonight because I will be going to bed an hour early.  That way, I won’t be yawning during church tomorrow.  I use the official U.S. time clock to obtain the correct time, to the nearest second.

Mar. 9, 2018

South Korea’s National Security Office, Chung Eui-yong, spoke yesterday in Washington, DC.  He reported on a meeting earlier this week between South Korean officials and the president of North Korea, Kim Jong Un.

Now, a meeting apparently is being planned between President Trump and Kim Jong Un.  If such a meeting takes place, it probably will be in May.  The proposed location of the meeting is unknown.

World Leaders Welcome Planned Talks
Between Trump And North Korea Leader

If this proposed meeting takes place, I am very skeptical that North Korea actually will cut back its nuclear reserves.  Kim Jong Un might say that they will do it just to get some of the sanctions against N.K. lifted.

However, for decades, N.K. has been agreeing to turn back their nuclear program while, at the same time, escalating it.  I don’t see how that is going to change anytime soon, if ever.

Mar. 7, 2018

A friend from church forwarded me an email report from Jewish Voice Ministries International.  It describes how the enemies of Israel seem to be preparing to attack her.  I made a page out of the whole email here:

JVMI's Weekly Middle East Update

If everything in the report is true, then it is possible that an attack on Israel could occur sooner rather than later—perhaps even as soon as Passover week, which begins on March 31 and runs through the first week of April.  If so, then we probably can expect the prophetic words by Jesus in Luke 21:20-24 to take place:

When you see Jerusalem being surrounded by armies, you will know that its desolation is near.  Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains, let those in the city get out, and let those in the country not enter the city.  For this is the time of punishment in fulfillment of all that has been written.  How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers!  There will be great distress [tribulation] in the land and wrath against this people.  They will fall by the sword and will be taken as prisoners to all the nations.  Jerusalem will be trampled on by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.

I don’t like to think about this happening, but it is going to happen at some point.  However, considering all the things—including countless disasters—that have taken place since the season of Teshuvah that began at sunset on Aug. 21, 2017, it wouldn’t surprise me at all if the fulfillment of Jesus’ dreaded prophecy is very near.  I hope not.

Mar. 5, 2018

Today, President Trump and wife Melania welcomed Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu and wife Sara to the White House.  It is the first time that Netanyahu has visited the White House while Trump has been president.

It was three months ago, on Dec. 6, 2017, that Trump acknowledged Jerusalem to be the capital of Israel.  He also said that the U.S. would be moving its embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Today, Trump indicated that construction on the new embassy would begin by Israel’s independence day in May.  It will be the day after the 70th anniversary of the declaration of the establishment of the State of Israel, which was on May 14, 1948.

Trump 'may' travel to Jerusalem
for US embassy opening

Netanyahu gets VIP treatment from Trump
after years of frosty relations with Obama

Mar. 3, 2018

I attended a fun Purim feast last night.  It actually happened a night or two late, due to scheduling difficulties, but that was okay.

We had a festive meal.  Then we read the story of Esther from the Megillah.  It was a good time.


30-second slideshow

Mar. 2, 2018

Following Billy Graham’s passing on Feb. 21 and his honorary memorial ceremony was held in the National Capitol Rotunda on Feb. 28, his funeral and grave side services took place today.  These services were in Charlotte, NC.

The funeral service was in a 28,000-square-foot tent, similar to other tents in which Graham held crusades for countless millions of people.  The huge tent used in Graham’s 1949 crusade was referred to as a “canvas cathedral.”  That crusade shot him to national attention.

About 2,000 people were in attendance today.  They included President Trump, Vice President Pence, and their wives.  All of Billy Graham’s five children had wonderful things to say about their father.

Billy Graham funeral: Evangelist's
children carry on crusade

Here is a video of the funeral service, just over 2 hours in length:

Here is a video of the graveside service, just over 1 hour in length:

Billy Graham quoted from the Bible in all of his crusades.  This may be his most quoted verse, stated by Jesus, which is absolutely true:

I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6)

One thing in particular that Franklin Graham said struck me as interesting.  He said, “Daddy, I won’t see you on this earth again.”  Then, gazing at the casket before him, he added, “But I will see you again...and maybe soon.”  Perhaps he senses that a gathering of believers may take place soon.

In other news, for a couple of hours this morning, I was unable to log onto AOL to check my email.  So I did a search online and discovered that AOL was experiencing an outage problem in several areas around the U.S.  No explanation has been given by AOL for what caused the outage.


Mar. 1, 2018

Today is Purim, which began last evening at sunset.  Many communities observe it tomorrow as well.  It is a time celebrated by Jews everywhere in commemoration of being saved from extermination.  This is a very interesting account of how God blessed a Jewish girl to the point of becoming Queen over the entire Medo-Persian Empire.

The annihilation of all the Jewish people had been decreed, and Queen Esther was in a position to prevent this from happening, even though she risked her life in doing so.  It is a fascinating, true story, in case you would like to read about it in the Book of Esther.  In that biblical account is written the mandate that every generation of Jews should celebrate Purim:

These days should be remembered and observed in every generation by every family, and in every province and in every city.  And these days of Purim should never cease to be celebrated by the Jews, nor should the memory of them die out among their descendants. (Esther 9:28)

13-second slideshow

Feb. 28, 2018

Billy Graham welcomed in heavenThe great Billy Graham passed away, at age 99, a week ago on Feb. 21.  I have no doubt that he received a big welcome in heaven (where everybody knows Jesus).

Today, an honorary memorial ceremony was held in the Capitol Rotunda in Washington, DC, where Graham will lie in honor for 24 hours.  Graham’s whole family was in attendance.  Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan and Donald Trump were among those who spoke at the event.

Graham is only the fourth civilian to lie in honor in the US Capitol.  The other three were Rosa Parks in 2005 and two Capitol Police officers, Jacob Joseph Chestnut and John Michael Gibson, killed in the line of duty in 1998.

Reverend Graham was not a sectarian nor a racist.  He loved everyone and believed that the gospel message of Jesus Christ should be heard by all.  Graham knew that the knowledge and acceptance of Jesus as Lord and Savior could change anyone’s life for the better, now and eternally.





75-second slideshow

A video of today’s special event, including Graham’s coffin being brought into the Capitol Building, can be viewed below.  It lasts just over an hour.

Feb. 25, 2018

The 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea, have come to an end.  I didn’t watch as many events as I did during the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, in 2014.  I don’t really care all that much about winter sports, and I didn’t have the time to watch a whole lot of the events.

Overall, Norway tied with Germany for the most gold medals.  Norway also received the most silver medals and the most total medals.  The USA placed fourth in the number of gold medals and fourth in total medals.  This chart shows the top 20 nations in order of total medals received:

2018 Winter Olympics Medal Tally

The 2020 Summer Olympics are scheduled to take place in Tokyo, Japan, while the 2022 Winter Olympics are scheduled to take place in Bejing, China.

Feb. 24, 2018

At Olive Tree Ministries today, Jan Markell, Eric Barger and Jill Martin Rische talked about the entry of the “New Age” into the church.  For instance, some churches are using “destiny cards,” which are a Christianized version of tarot cards and fortune telling.  These “destiny cards” are said to “empower people’s destinies.”

For instance, the Christalignment team in Melbourne, Australia, says that these cards “are more predictive and higher than most cards, and can address a current life question that you may have.”  They also claim to “practice a form of supernatural healing that flows from the universal presence of the Christ.”

As the end of the age and Jesus’ return get closer, religious counterfeits are on the increase.  The audio program, lasting 57 minutes, can be heard here:

Christianized Fortune Telling: What Next? — Audio

In other news, there was released today a Democratic rebuttal to the GOP memo of Feb. 2.  The GOP memo purported to show improper use of surveillance by the FBI and Justice Department during the 2016 presidential campaign.

The Democratic rebuttal had to have certain redactions before it could be made public.  President Trump called the Democratic rebuttal a "total political and legal bust."

Dems' rebuttal to GOP FISA memo
is released; Trump deems it a 'bust'

Democratic rebuttal to GOP FISA memo

Feb. 23, 2018

President Trump addressed the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) today.  Besides talking about his hair, he talked about what he perceived to be his great achievements during his time in office so far.  Indeed, many of them have been noteworthy.

To me, most of it sounded like a campaign speech.  I did not have the time to listen to all of it, as I had a lot of other things to do.  He spoke for about 1 hour 15 minutes.

Feb. 22, 2018

The annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) is taking place Feb. 21-24 in National Harbor, MD.  Today, one main speaker was Wayne LaPierre, executive vice president and CEO of the National Rifle Association (NRA).

LaPierre slammed Democrats for their reaction to the mass shooting last week in Parkland, FL.  He also warned of government overreach extending far beyond the limiting of fire arms.  He spoke for about 37 minutes

Then, after being introduced by his wife, Karen, Vice President Mike Pence addressed the CPAC.  Among other things, he issued an impassioned condemnation of North Korea and talked about accomplishments achieved by Donald Trump and conservatives in the past year.  He spoke for about 29 minutes.

Feb. 21, 2018

Evangelist Billy Graham passes away at age 99Billy Graham, perhaps the greatest evangelist of all time, passed away early this morning at his home in Montreat, NC.  His 99th birthday was Nov. 7, 2017.

For over six decades, huge gatherings of people came to hear Mr. Graham at countless indoor and outdoor crusades and rallies all over the world.  Millions of people have responded to his invitations to accept Jesus Christ as their personal Savior and Lord.  He also was a spiritual adviser to several U.S. presidents.

‘America’s Pastor’: Evangelist
Billy Graham dead at 99

Day of Discovery has a series of two videos, each under 30 minutes, that tell the story of Billy Graham.  The videos are hosted by Wintley Phipps, who sang at many Billy Graham functions for 25 years.  He also sings a few tunes on the videos.

The Calling of Billy Graham: Part 1 | Part 2

Billy Graham has stated, “I don’t believe that any man can solve the problems of life without Jesus Christ.”  I agree.  I also feel that any nation’s distancing itself from Jesus, or outright rejecting Him as Lord, eventually will lead to a destructive division in that nation, resulting ultimately in that nation’s downfall.

The USA has become increasingly divided since 1962, when prayer and the bible were removed from U.S. public schools.  It seems that the total solar eclipse of August 21, 2017, was a warning sign from God that the division in this nation had increased to the point that devastating and catastrophic disaster will result if we do not turn to God to solve our multitudinous and multifarious problems.

Feb. 19, 2018

Today, the third Monday of February, is Presidents’ Day in the U.S.  It is a federal holiday.

George Washington’s farewell address in 1796 was not delivered publicly.  It first appeared in the Philadelphia Daily American Advertiser and then in papers around the country.  For those with an interest in reading it, it is here:

Washington’s Farewell Address

Many have heard the tale that George Washington, as a young boy, chopped down a cherry tree and then told his father, “I cannot tell a lie.  I did it with my little hatchet.”  Most likely, this is a myth written about by Mason Locke Weems, one of Washington’s biographers.

In any case, I like cherries.  I bet that George Washington did, too.  So in honor of our first president, this video shows how to make chocolate covered cherry cookies:

In other news, conflicts on the border between Israel and Gaza continued this weekend, including today.  There has been a call for calm, but I feel that violence in the region is only going to escalate.

Qatari envoy says both Israel
and Gaza militants want calm

Feb. 18, 2018

This is the third day of the Munich Security Conference in Germany.  In his address today at the conference, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu once again scolded Iran, which he described as the largest threat to Middle East security.

Holding up what he said was a fragment of the Iranian drone shot down a week ago on Feb. 11, Netanyahu warned Tehran not to test Israel's resolve.  Iran responded by accusing Israel of being the main aggressor in the region.

Netanyahu Warns Region on Iran, Syria

Feb. 17, 2018

At Olive Tree Ministries today, Jan Markell and Eric Barger talked with David Fiorazo about the war on truth.  David is an author, public speaker, content contributor and co-host of the daily radio talk show Stand Up for the Truth.

In today’s world, truth is being denied, hated, rejected and reinterpreted.  Many are falling for deception as satanic delusion consumes them.  They call evil good and good evil:

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.  Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever in their own sight. (Isaiah 5:20,21)

Paul Harvey’s “If I Were the Devil” speech, which was heard first in 1965, was played.  I have heard it several times and agree with all of it.  It’s amazing how the things Harvey said—about how Satan cleverly deceives and influences people—have transpired over the decades, all the way into the present.

Jan Markell closes with a commentary on the things she thought she would never live to see.  The audio program, lasting 57 minutes, can be heard here:

The War on TruthAudio

Feb. 16, 2018

After months of investigations, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has announced the indictment of 13 Russian nationals and 3 Russian companies.  He said that there is no allegation that any American was knowingly involved in the conspiracy, nor is there any allegation that the efforts of the Russian defendants affected the outcome of the U.S. election in 2016.

Basically, the Russian defendants wanted to undermine confidence in our democracy.  According to a spokesman for the special counsel’s office, the indictment charges all of the defendants with conspiracy to defraud the U.S., as well as “three defendants with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud, and five defendants with aggravated identity theft.”

Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher Wray briefed President Trump on the indictments today.  They told him that that the indictments did not allege cooperation or collusion with Trump campaign.

13 Russian nationals indicted
for interfering in US elections

The entire 37-page indictment can be read here:

Case 1:18-cr-00032-DLF

Feb. 15, 2018

'Im going to be professional school shooter' comment by Nikolas CruzThis is the day after the third deadliest school shooting in U.S. history.  Shooter Nikolas Cruz, 19, killed 17 and seriously injured 14 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL.  He used an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle to do the shooting.

He later was arrested, and today he appeared before a judge who said Cruz will be held without bond.  His inmate information is here: CRUZ, NIKOLAS JACOB.

On Sep. 24, 2017 (Cruz’ 19th birthday), YouTube user Ben Bennight (BenTheBondsman) saw a comment from Nikolas Cruz on one of his video pages stating, “Im going to be a professional school shooter.”  He contacted the FBI, who came to interview him.  However, they said they never were able to trace the location of the person leaving the comment.

Yesterday, following the shooting, an FBI agent came to Ben Bennight’s house and asked him further questions.  This video by Ben gives the details:

Aaron and Melissa FeisA true hero in the horrendous shooting event was identified as assistant football coach and security guard Aaron Feis.  He was shot shielding students from bullets coming from the rifle of Cruz.

Feis later died in surgery at a local hospital, where he had been taken after the shooting.  He is survived by his wife, Melissa, and baby daughter, Arielle.

Head coach Willis May said a female student told him that Fries got between her and the shooter before pushing her to safety.  According to an interview with the Sun Sentinel, May said the following about Feis:

Big ol’ teddy bear.  Hardcore—he coached hard.  Real good line.  He did a great job with the [offensive] line.  He took pride with working with those guys.  Loyalty—I trusted him.  He had my back.  He worked hard.  Just a good man.  Loved his family. Loved his brother—just an excellent family man.

Florida school shooting victim hailed
for shielding students from gunman

There is a long list of shootings at elementary, middle and high schools that have resulted in fatalities in the last 20 years.  The list does NOT include suicides, gang-related incidents, or deaths resulting from interpersonal conflicts.

School shootings in the US keep
happening again and again and again

Today, there are renewed cries for gun control, more help for the mentally ill, increased security at schools, and other measures that might prevent school shootings in the future.  All of these things are idealistic fantasies.

What needs to happen is for the people of this nation, as a whole, to get on their knees, ask God for His forgiveness for ejecting Him out of our affairs for decades, and then earnestly entreat Him to protect our nation from deadly attacks.  He is the only one who can help us.

However, this is not going to happen, as too many Americans have rejected the one, true God.  I still feel that the total solar eclipse of August 21, 2017 was a harbinger that this nation’s destructive division, due to its inability to repent and to seek God’s guidance on important matters, is going to grow deeper and increase indefinitely.

I went to WalMart and got 176.58 oz. (11.04 lb.) of 50%-off Valentine’s Day clearance candy today.  I know I purchased more than I should have.  Some of this candy is for some church friends who work today and were unable to get to WalMart early this morning.

Early morning after a holiday is the best time to get discount candy, since the candy aisle gets cleaned out of the clearance candy pretty fast.  One aisle already had been cleared of Valentine’s items and was fully stocked with Easter candy and other items.

11.04 pounds of Valentine's Day candy

Feb. 14, 2018

Have a happy Valentine’s Day and give away lots of love.  That’s the best way to get some back! 

13-second slideshow
Love is patient, love is kind.  It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.  Love never fails. (1 Corinthians 13:4-8)

Less than an hour’s drive east from the industrial port city of Hamburg, Germany, is the small town of Trittau.  An aerial photograph of farm fields here reveals this spot plowed in the shape of a heart:

A heart-shaped field near Hamburg, Germany
Feb. 11, 2018

An Iranian surveillance drone entered Israeli airspace yesterday.  It was launched from a Syrian base in the Homs desert, and it set off alarms across the Golan Heights and the Jordan Valley.

An Israeli Apache helicopter tracked the drone.  After being in Israeli air space for over a minute, the drone was shot down inside the northern Golan Heights.  After bringing down the drone, Israel sent jets into Syria and blew up the command center located at an airbase near Palmyra.

In response, an Israeli F-16 jet, on its way back into Israel, was shot down by Syrian anti-aircraft fire.  Israel then launched a broader series of strikes inside Syria, many aimed at Iranian positions.

Prime Minister Netanyahu made statements about the incursion and Israel’s response.  He said, “This morning Iran brazenly violated Israel’s sovereignty.”  He added that Israel will protect itself from “any threat or any attempt to harm its sovereignty.”

Israel military targets Iranian drone
and strikes Syria, F-16 crashes

These attacks show that friction is continuing to increase in the Middle East, particularly in Syria near Israel.  This sudden escalation could be a harbinger of what lies ahead as the Syrian fighting winds down, and an emboldened Iran establishes a military presence in Syria that Israel vows it will never accept.

There are fears in Israel, though, that Iran may be attempting to use Syrian territory to stage future attacks on Israel.  Iran also may be in the process of creating a land corridor from Iran to Lebanon, allowing Iran to transfer weapons more easily to Hezbollah.  This is Lebanon’s Iranian-backed political party and militant group sworn to Israel’s destruction.

All of this is very concerning, since it may lead to Jesus’ prophecy in Luke 21:20-24.  If so, I feel the most likely time for those prophetic events to transpire would be the first week of April 2018 = Passover week, only 7 weeks away.

Feb. 9, 2018

The U.S. Senate and House passed a sweeping bipartisan budget accord overnight.  This ended an hours-long government shutdown and cleared the way for huge spending increases for both the Pentagon and domestic programs.

The bill passed the Senate first with significant support from both parties in a 71-28 margin.  Finally, around 5:30 a.m. ET, the House passed the budget deal by a margin of 240-186.

President Trump signed the bill early this morning, officially restarting the flow of federal funds.  Although brief, this was the second shutdown in less than three weeks, the previous one being on Jan. 20.

Congress passes massive budget deal
before sunrise to end government shutdown

In other news, the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea, have begun.  The opening ceremony was televised on NBC tonight.  It was outstanding and very entertaining.  The 3-minute video here contains some of the ceremony’s highlights:

The Best Moments From the
2018 Olympics Opening Ceremony

I generally prefer the Summer Olympics over the Winter Olympics.  Since I am very busy with many things, I probably will be watching only a few of the events.  I also doubt that I will have the time to make regular entries about Olympic events.

Feb. 8, 2018

Stock Market Activity Feb. 8, 2018The greatest point drop in history of the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), –1,175.21 points, took place three days ago on Feb. 5.  Today, the Dow experienced its second greatest point drop ever: –1,032.89 points.  The S&P 500 index was down –100.66 points to 2,581.00.

Furthermore, both the DJIA and the S&P 500 now are in market correction territory, since they both have fallen more than 10% from their record highs on Jan. 26.  The DJIA is down –2,756.25 points or 10.36%, while the S&P 500 is down –291.87 points or 10.16%.

Stock market slammed as
Wall Street jitters persist

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) dropped –1,032.89 points today, the second greatest point drop ever.

Feb. 7, 2018

Falcon Heavy rocket test flight at Kennedy Space Center launch complexSpaceX has launched the world’s most powerful operational rocket.  The Falcon Heavy rocket was launched from Kennedy Space Center in Florida at 3:45 pm ET yesterday.  The launch was viewed by millions of people, including thousands of onlookers at the space center.

The rocket had a smooth launch with no problems.  Several minutes later, two of the rocket boosters landed upright back at the space center.  They are expected to be used again.  SpaceX owner Elon Musk said, “That was probably the most exciting thing I’ve ever seen—literally ever.”

The third booster was supposed to land on a droneship off the coast.  However, that booster crashed.

Musk’s personal Tesla roadster automobile is on board the rocket.  A mannequin is sitting at the wheel in a space suit, and David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” is playing repeatedly on the radio.

The rocket is expected to orbit the sun and then fly back out into space.  When asked why he wanted to put his $100,000 car on the rocket, Musk replied, “I love the thought of a car drifting apparently endlessly through space and perhaps being discovered by an alien race millions of years in the future.”

SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket
launches successfully

15-second slideshow

Feb. 6, 2018

Stock Market Activity Feb. 6, 2018After yesterday’s record point drop, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) rebounded significantly today with a gain of 567.02 points.  However, the Dow went on an extremely volatile rollercoaster ride throughout the day.

The Dow was as low as 23,778.74 and as high as 24,946.23.  That is a difference of 1,167.49 points, which is almost as much as the Dow fell yesterday: –1,175.21 points.  The S&P 500 index gained 46.2 points or 1.74%, closing at 2,695.14 points, with an intraday high of 2,701.04 points.

It appears that the market has become very unstable.  At this point, it looks like it could go either way.

Dow closes 567 points higher
after another wild ride

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) rebounded 567.02 points today after a record-breaking point decline yesterday.

Feb. 5, 2018

Stock Market Activity Feb. 5, 2018After a substantial drop of –665.75 points in the stock market’s Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) on Feb. 2, people have been wondering all weekend what the market would do today.  There was hope that it would begin to go back up again.

Well, today the Dow experienced the greatest single-day point plunge in history: a whopping –1,175.21 points.  That is a bigger point drop than the Dow’s overall decline all of last week: –1,095.75 points.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) made a record point decline down to 24,345.75 today.

Furthermore, the intraday low was actually 23,923.88, which means the greatest intraday point drop in history was –1,597.08 points or 6.26%.  The S&P 500 index dropped –113.19 points or –4.10%, closing at 2,648.94 points, with an intraday low of 2,638.17 points.

The market has given up every point since the tax reform bill was signed into law on Dec. 22, 2017.  Also, all the gains in the Dow in 2018 have been lost.

The CBOE Volatility Index or VIX is a measure of the stock market’s expectation of volatility and is known as the market’s “fear gauge.”  Today, it soared to its highest level since 2011.  Even markets all over the globe are going down.  Evidently, people everywhere are becoming very nervous.

Naturally, there are questions about why this significant sell-off is happening.  I have heard several possibilities, such as that there are concerns over inflation and rising interest rates, which have pushed up bond yields at the expense of stocks.  However, I do not think anyone knows, with absolute certainty, exactly why there has been such a marked downturn in the market during the past week.

I do think it is interesting how the worst of the Dow decline is happening soon after the supermoon total eclipse on Jan. 31God can, and sometimes does, use signs in the sky—such as the total solar eclipse of August 21, 2017—as harbingers and forewarnings of the future.

Feb. 4, 2018

Tom Brady, Patriots Quarterback / Nick Foles, Eagles QuarterbackSuper Bowl LII (52) took place today in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  Nick Foles and the Philadelphia Eagles beat Tom Brady and the New England Patriots.  The final score was 41 to 33.

Super Bowl LII Scoreboard

My favorite play happened a few minutes before the second quarter ended.  The Eagles’ quarterback, Nick Boles, did a very tricky play where he ended up being the receiver to catch the ball in the end zone for a touchdown.

The play was pretty clever and amazing.  This short article describes it better than I can:

The Eagles' incredible Super Bowl trick play was
identical to a play Nick Foles ran in high school

Feb. 2, 2018

Punxsutawney PhilThis has been one of the busiest news days in awhile.  It is Groundhog Day.  Punxsutawney Phil came out and saw his shadow, which is supposed to indicate that there will be six more weeks of winter.

Punxsutawney Phil sees shadow;
predicts six more weeks of winter

Dow Jones Industrial Index Feb. 2, 2018The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) had the highest single-session point loss today (–665.75 points) since 2008.  This also has been the worst weekly point plunge (–1,095.75 points) and percentage decline (–4.12%) since 2016.

On June 24, 2016, the affirmative Brexit vote in the U.K. resulted in a U.S. stock market decline of –610.32 points or 3.39%.  Compared to that, today’s market decrease was more in points and only a bit less in the percentage amount.  It also was the sixth worst daily drop in history.

Dow plunges 666 points—
worst day since Brexit

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) made a substantial decline down to 25,520.96 today.

A much anticipated memo, the House Intelligence Committee Report On FISA-Abuses, was released by the White House today.  Besides the substantial drop in the stock market, this memo was the focus of much of the news all day.

House memo states disputed dossier
was key to FBI's FISA warrant to
surveil members of Team Trump

Feb. 1, 2018

I began making entries in the Ted’s Remarks section of my website on Feb. 1, 2006.  It sure has been a LONG 12 years. 

Jan. 31, 2018

Total lunar eclipseThere was a total eclipse of the moon early this morning.  It was a supermoon, so the reddish or “blood” eclipse had a very awesome appearance in places where it could be seen.

This was the second largest/brightest supermoon of the year.  The full moon on Jan. 1 (or on Jan. 2 in many areas of the world) was the only one larger and brighter than this one.

The full moon today also is called a “blue moon,” which is the second full moon in any month.  So while the moon was being eclipsed, it was a “blue, blood, supermoon.”

All of the United States was able to see portions of the eclipse; but much of it could not see the totality portion of the eclipse, as the moon had set before that happened.  Only Alaska and Hawaii were able to see the entire eclipse, from beginning to end.

A useful site that I like is timeanddate.com.  The following page shows what portions of the eclipse were able to be seen throughout the world this morning:


Jan. 30, 2018

President Trump gave his first State of the Union Address tonight to a joint session of Congress.  It was fully televised and lasted about 1 hour 21 minutes.  It can be watched below, beginning at the 4:00 point after Trump is introduced by House Speaker Paul Ryan.

During his speech, Trump noted that the stock market has gone up significantly since he became president.  Indeed, this has been true.

The most recent record high close of the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), on Jan. 26, was 26,616.71.  Compared to the DJIA close of 20,068.51 almost exactly a year ago, on Jan. 25, 2017, there has been an increase of a whopping 6,548.20 points or 24.60%.

Interestingly, though, there was a notable drop or correction in the market the past couple of days.  Today, the DJIA closed at 26,076.89.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) has made a two-day correction down to 26,076.89 today.

Yesterday, the DJIA was down 177.23 points or 0.67%.  Today, there was a more significant decline of 362.59 points or 1.37%.  Compared to the record high a few days ago, this was an overall decline in the Dow of 539.82 points or 2.03%.

Some have suggested that this decline was due to a fear that interest rates will be increased when the Federal Reserve meets tomorrow (which I think is doubtful).  Others have suggested other possibilities for the sell-off.

Whatever the reason(s), it is unknown whether or not this portends a greater correction in the market soon.  I do feel that, at some point, the market is going to drop substantially, perhaps with a catastrophic crash.

Probably most people do not want to think about that, but I think about it frequently.  This is the main reason I make an entry each time the DJIA increases above the next level of 100 points.  The more the market continues to go up, the further it eventually is going to plummet like a falling meteor.

Jan. 29, 2018

Single engine plane after landing safely on the Costa Mesa 55 FreewayA single-engine Beechcraft Bonanza plane had to make an emergency landing in Orange County between 7:45 and 8:00 p.m. last night.  Miraculously, it landed safely in Costa Mesa in the right lane of the 55 Freeway, also known as California State Route 55.

The pilot, Izzy Slod, and his passenger, Daniel Gross, were flying at least a mile off the coast on their way up from San Diego to Van Nuys.  Suddenly, the plane engine stalled and would not restart.

John Wayne airport in Santa Ana was a little too far for the plane to glide into.  So they contacted air traffic control to notify them that their plane would have to land on the northbound 55 Freeway.

Amazingly, the plane was able to land smoothly, just before the Del Mar Ave. exit, without hitting any of the moving traffic.  Fortunately, nobody was injured.  The northbound lanes were stopped for a couple of hours until the plane could be towed away.

Plane makes emergency landing
on Southern California freeway

13-second slideshow

I have driven to and from Newport Beach, Newport Harbor and Balboa Island, near the southern end of the 55 Freeway, countless times.  I’m just glad that I wasn’t coming back from Newport Beach last night.

This is almost exactly 7 months after a plane crashed onto the extremely busy 405 Freeway (which the 55 Freeway intersects) on June 30, 2017.  It’s almost unbelievable that two planes have landed on Orange County freeways without causing any traffic accidents, although the two passengers in the plane that crash-landed sustained spinal fractures.

Jan. 27, 2018

At Olive Tree Ministries today, Jan Markell and Eric Barger completed a two-part series with Pastor Billy Crone on the rise of artificial intelligence or AI.  The first part was aired a week ago.

If AI is going to rule the world as promoters suggest, how does it fit into the biblical picture and Bible prophecy?  Promoters of AI say people will follow a “robot messiah” someday.  They are determined to supersede the God of the universe.

Churches will be founded to worship AI, such as this one:

Inside The First Church of Artificial Intelligence

Both audio programs, lasting 57 minutes each, can be heard here:

Will Artificial Intelligence Rule the World? — Part 1: Audio | Part 2: Audio

Generally speaking, I do feel that the views of Jan Markell and Billy Crone about the artificial intelligence topic, and how it fits into prophetic passages in the book of Revelation, are plausible and possible.  However, I do not agree with their perspective about a Pre-tribulation Rapture taking place just prior to the final 7 years of this age.

My views about the Rapture can be found in my two-part commentary here: The Rapture.  Some of my email responses to people’s Rapture questions can be found here: Rapture Questions & Responses.

Jan. 26, 2018

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 26,400, above 26,500 and above 26,600 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.85% to 26,616.71, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 1.18% to 2,872.87, also a record high.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 26,616.71.  Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,872.87.

World Economic ForumIn other news, President Trump has been attending the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.  Yesterday he met with Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel and Prime Minister May of the United Kingdom.

In the closing session of the forum today, Trump addressed those at the event.  He spoke about his pledge to eliminate unnecessary regulations so businesses and employees “can thrive and flourish as never before.”

The president encouraged trade and put America first.  “But America first does not mean America alone,” he said.  “When the United States grows, so does the world.”

Trump called for other nations to join him in a maximum pressure campaign to de-nuclearize the Korean Peninsula and said the United States is working with allies and partners to destroy jihadist terrorist organizations.  He said that the coalition to defeat Islamic State has retaken almost 100 percent of the territory once held by the killers in Iraq and Syria.  Furthermore, he urged nations to block Iran’s path to a nuclear weapon.

Trump says "America is open for business"
in address to World Economic Forum at Davos

In the following video, President Trump begins speaking at the 11:15 point and continues for about 16 minutes.  Then he is interviewed for 11 minutes by Klaus Schwab, a German engineer who is the founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum.

It looks like the stock market reacted very positively to President Trump’s address today.  The Dow soared up 223.92 points to a record high of 26,616.71.

Jan. 25, 2018

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 26,300 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.54% to 26,392.79, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.06% to 2,839.25, also a record high.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 26,392.79.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,839.25.

Jan. 23, 2018

Over the decades, I have watched some excellent documentaries produced by PBS (Public Broadcasting Service).  In 2014, they first televised a six-part documentary series, hosted by Steven Johnson, called How We Got to Now.

There are many things we use frequently that we take for granted.  However, the technology for them had a beginning at some point in the past, and it progressed into what we are able to experience now.  The How We Got to Now series reveals the initial ideas, the people, and the consequences of innovations in six areas: sound, cold, light, glass, time & clean.

Tonight, I very much enjoyed watching the interesting episode about glass.  It shows how the invention of glass progressed to the development of things such as windows, green houses, lenses, prescription eyeglasses (such as those prescribed in my eye profession), mirrors, microscopes, telescopes, cameras, fiber optics, computers, cell phones, and other things that are used everyday.  This program last just under 56 minutes.

Jan. 22, 2018

Vice President Mike Pence addressed the Israeli Knessett in Jerusalem today.  He is the first U.S. vice president to do so.

In his speech, Pence emphatically stated that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel.  He pledged that the U.S. would relocate its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem by the end of 2019.

Pence also reprimanded Iran for its pursuit of nuclear weapons.  “The United States of America will never allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon,” said Pence.  “Beyond the nuclear deal, we will also no longer tolerate its support of terrorism” and oppression of its people, he said.

Pence in Knesset: Embassy to open in
Jerusalem in 2019, Iran will never get bomb

In other news, in another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 26,200 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.55% to 26,214.60, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.81% to 2,832.97, also a record high.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 26,214.60.  Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,832.97.

It can be seen that the Dow opened down this morning.  This probably was a reaction to the shutdown of the federal government on Jan. 20.

However, it began rising significantly after votes in the Senate and House enabled the government to be funded until Feb. 8.  Later, the bill was signed by President Trump.

Trump signs bill ending
government shutdown after 3 days

Jan. 21, 2018

Both the AFC Championship game and the NFC Championship game were played today.  The New England Patriots defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars 24 to 20.  The Philadelphia Eagles defeated the Minnesota Vikings 38 to 7.

AFC winners: New England Patriots    NFC winners: Philadelphia Eagles

The winners will meet in Super Bowl LII (52) on Feb. 4 at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, MN.  My friends who are Patriots or Eagles fans may not be too happy that I don’t really care who wins.  Good luck to both teams. 

Jan. 20, 2018

Today is the first anniversary of the Inauguration of Donald Trump as President, and Michael Pence as Vice President, of the United States on Jan. 20, 2017.  It also is the first day of United States federal government shutdown of 2018, which began at midnight.

DC lawmakers dig their heels in, point
fingers as government shutdown rolls on

At Olive Tree Ministries today, Jan Markell and Eric Barger began a two-part series with Pastor Billy Crone on artificial intelligence (AI).  A week from today will be the second part of the series.

Developers say “robot messiahs” will solve all the world’s problems.  Promoters simply want AI to replace God.

Churches will be founded to worship AI, such as this one:

Inside The First Church of Artificial Intelligence

If AI is going to rule the world, how does this fit into the end-times?  The audio program, lasting 57 minutes, can be heard here:

Will Artificial Intelligence Rule the World? — Part 1: Audio

Jan. 19, 2018

2017-18 Influenza Season in the U.S.The U.S. is in the midst of the worst and most extensive influenza epidemics in years.  Many are saying that it is the worst in over a decade.  It is widespread throughout most states, excluding Hawaii.

The most prevalent virus in this year’s strains of flu viruses is H3N2.  In years when this strain is present, there are more flu cases than usual, the illnesses are more severe, and there are more hospitilizations and deaths.

All of these things have been true this flu season, which began in October, 2017, and is expected to continue for several more weeks.  The highest risk groups to get the flu are children younger than 5 and adults older than 65.

The flu epidemic has hit a milestone
that hasn’t happened in over a decade

Common Flu Symptoms          Common Flu Symptoms

When I have any of the above symptoms for longer than a day, I start taking Olive Leaf Extract (OLE) capsules.  For over 25 years, I have found it to be a virtually miraculous naturopathic substance.

OLE is effective against viruses, bacteria, fungi, and other microorganisms that can make us sick.  Some studies have shown that it even may be effective against cancer in its early stages.

Most health food stores carry OLE.  I get mine online at Puritan.com, specifically 500 mg capsules with 120 capsules per bottle as seen on this page.  If I go on a trip, I always pack a bottle just in case.

Jan. 18, 2018

After weeks of President Trump saying that he was going to release his Fake News Awards for 2017, he finally has done that.

The Highly-Anticipated
2017 Fake News Awards

Jan. 17, 2018

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 25,900, above 26,000 and above 26,100 for the first time.  The Dow was up 1.25% to 26,115.65, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.94% to 2,802.56, also a record high and its first close above 2,800.  The Dow close was even higher than the record intraday high of 26,086.12 yesterday.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 26,115.65.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,802.56.

Jan. 16, 2018

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) quickly soared above 26,000 for awhile today.  It reached 26,086.12, a record intraday high.  However, it eventually closed at 25,792.86, which was down 10.33 points or 0.04% from the previous high on Jan. 12.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) soared up to 26,086.12 today, a record intraday high. However, it closed 25,792.86, which was below the previous high.

I would liken the stock market, for over a year, as being like a rocket shooting up, up, up into space at a high rate of speed.  While many see no end to this upward swing, I’m not really in that boat myself.  I am wondering when the rocket is going to level off and return back down to the surface of the earth...or below that.

Jan. 15, 2018

Flag of New CaliforniaThere have been movements by portions of California, for some time, to break away and form a new state.  Here is the website of the newest movement to do this, showing an unofficial Declaration of Independence of the state of New California:

About New California

Here are a few interesting pages:

State of New California
Declaration of Independence
  |  Affirmation of Allegiance to the United States of America and
Justification for the Formation of the State of New California

New California Flag  |  Map of New California (in blue)

California is an awesome and beautiful state.  It also contains my favorite city in the entire world, San Diego, the 8th largest city in the U.S.  However, over the decades, there have been an increasing number of things about California that I have come to dislike, particularly the dominant political status of increasing liberalism and progressivism (which I see as “regressivism” away from the standards of God).

Also, I am not at all happy that California has become a sanctuary state and has legalized marijuana for recreational use.  See my Jan. 2 entry.

I have my doubts that New California actually will be able to break away and become the 51st state.  However, if that actually were to happen, it looks like San Diego would be part of New California.  I think it would be smart to designate it as the capital. 

Jan. 13, 2018

Emergency Alert: BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.In Hawaii this morning, at 8:07 a.m., the Emergency Management Agency sent out an alert to mobile phones and to televisions.  It said that a ballistic missile was headed for the state and warned people to seek immediate shelter.  More than a million people saw or heard the warning.

Understandably, there was a great deal of panic; nobody knew what to do or where to go, as there are no nuclear shelters in Hawaii.  It took awhile for Hawaii’s Emergency Management Agency (EMA) to send out messages, on Twitter, that there was no threat and that the warning was a false alarm.

Governor David Ige said that the ballistic missile warning was an accident.  “It was a mistake made during a standard procedure at the change over of a shift, and an employee pushed the wrong button.”

Senator Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) also issued a tweet saying that “there is no incoming missile to Hawaii” and that she had confirmed with officials that the alert was a “false alarm.”  She added, “This is a real threat facing Hawaii,” speaking about how the residents on the island were forced into a situation where they had to rush for cover.

Hawaii lawmakers say false alarm of inbound
ballistic missile was 'totally unacceptable'

Jan. 12, 2018

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 25,600, above 25,700 and above 25,800 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.89% to 25,803.19, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.67% to 2,786.24, also a record high.  It looks like it won’t be long before the Dow surpasses 26,000.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 25,803.19.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,786.24.

Jan. 11, 2018

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 25,400 and above 25,500 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.81% to 25,574.73, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.70% to 2,767.56, also a record high.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 25,574.73.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,767.56.

Jan. 10, 2018

Overturned power pole Boulders on the road
As of Dec. 23, the Thomas Fire—the largest wildfire in CA state history—was among many fires that had burned hundreds of thousands of acres.  This included consuming the normal vegetation and foliage on numerous hillsides.

Yesterday, colossal amounts of rain fell in So. California.  This is the rainy season, so normally that would be a good thing, especially after several months of exceptional drought last year.

However, since the devastating fires left hillsides bare, the enormous amounts of water caused enormous mudslides in many areas.  Powerlines came down and boulders covered roads  Houses were cut in half, trees were uprooted and cars were tossed around like toys.

Unfortunately, 80-90% of residents ignored evacuation orders.  So far, there are at least 15 deaths, with that number expected to rise.

At least 15 dead in California mudslides
as rescuers search for missing

Even Oprah Winfrey’s property, in upscale Montecito, was damaged by the massive mudslides and flooding.  At the Golden Globe Awards on Jan. 7, she received the prestigious Cecil B. DeMille award.  A couple of days later, she was showing everyone the big mess at her 42-acre Santa Barbara estate.

Today is the twenty-seventh anniversary of my last day of work, in 1991.  I had worked as an optometrist at FHP in Fountan Valley, CA, for 11¼ years.  Then I left the eye-care profession to pursue other interests, although I have included a large section about the human eye at my website.

Technically, Jan. 11 was supposed to be my official last day.  However, I called in sick that morning and went to Long Beach for the day.  I just couldn’t wait one more day to gain my freedom, and I have enjoyed having it every single day since then, thanks to God’s provisions for all of my needs. 

Jan. 9, 2018

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 25,300 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.41% to 25,385.80, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.13% to 2,751.29, also a record high.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 25,385.80.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,751.29.

Jan. 8, 2018

An F-16I from the Israeli Air Force at Ramon AirbaseIsraeli jets and ground-to-ground missiles struck Syria very early on Tuesday morning, Israel time.  In a statement carried by Syrian state television, it was reported that Israeli jets fired missiles at the al-Qutayfa area, near Damascus, from inside Lebanese airspace at 2:40 a.m. (0040 GMT).  Then Syrian air defenses hit one of the planes.

Next, Israeli rockets were fired from the Golan Heights.  However, it was reported that Syrian defenses brought them down.  Finally, four more rockets were fired from inside Israel.  One was intercepted by Syrian air defenses, while the others caused material damage.

Responding to a reporter’s question about the strikes, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Israel’s policy was to stop Hezbollah from moving “game-changing weapons” out of Syria.  Without explicitly confirming that Israel had carried out the strikes, Netanyahu added, “We back it up as necessary with action.”

Israel has pledged to prevent Syrian territory from being used by Iran to set up bases or to transfer high-quality weaponry to Hezbollah in Lebanon.  This weaponry has been helping Damascus beat back a rebellion for six years.

Syria Confirms Israel Strikes Near Damascus
With Jets, 'Ground-to-ground Missiles Intercepted'

Jan. 7, 2018

Golden Globe AwardThe 75th Golden Globe Awards took place tonight at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, CA.  Many of the nominees will be nominated again for Oscars at the 90th Academy Awards, held at the Dolby Theatre on Mar. 4 in Hollywood, CA.

The Golden Globe Awards show was hosted by Seth Meyers.  Amazingly, for the most part, he refrained from making anti-Trump statements or jokes.

Many of the winners hurried up to the stage to receive their awards.  Then most of them speedily gave their thank you speeches.  They had been told to keep their words as brief as possible to keep the program from lasting much too long, as it usually does.  Even so, it still lasted over 3 hours.

“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” and “Big Little Lies” claimed the most awards.

Golden Globes: The Complete
List of Winners and Nominees

Jan. 5, 2018

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 25,100 and above 25,200 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.88% to 25,295.87, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.70% to 2,743.15, also a record high.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 25,295.87.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,743.15.

Jan. 4, 2018

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 25,000 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.61% to 25,075.13, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.40% to 2,723.99, also a record high.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 25,075.13.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,723.99.

Jan. 3, 2018

A strong, bone-chilling blizzard is on its way up the east coast today.  It is expected to move from Florida to New England, bringing high winds, lots of ice and snow, and freezing temperatures along the way.

This powerful storm is being called one of three names: bomb cyclone, bombogenesis or snow hurricane.  The storm’s central barometric pressure is expected to drop least 24 millibars in 24 hours.  The lower the pressure, the lower the storm will be.

A 'Bomb Cyclone' Forming off the East Coast
Could Bring the Coldest Temperatures in 100 Years

Jan. 2, 2018

As of Jan. 1, California has become a sanctuary state.  This means that the state will limit its cooperation with the federal government effort to enforce immigration law.  Essentially, California is breaking federal law by doing this.

With new year, California
becomes 'sanctuary state'

Also, as of Jan. 1, California has legalized the sale of recreational marijuana for people of age 21 or older.  It is the sixth state—besides Alaska, Colorado, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, plus Washington, DC—to legalize the sale and recreational use of the drug.  All of these states continue to break federal law, which outlaws marijuana.

One thing I think about is the gigantic California freeway system, which is the busiest of any state.  There are frequent accidents and massive traffic jams in Los Angeles and Orange Counties.  Early morning and late afternoon traffic is the worst.

It is very important to stay alert and drive defensively.  With more drivers being high on pot, I expect the accident rate to escalate.  If I were a state police officer, I think I might quit the force.

Recreational marijuana is
officially legal in California

Jan. 1, 2018

Happy New Year.  Below are links to my annual calendar and list of 2018 holidays and observances that many like to download and tape to a wall nearby.  That is what I do, with the calendar on one side and the holidays/observances on the other side of one piece of paper.  Both are in .doc and .pdf format.

This calendar is not meant to substitute for a 12-page calendar on which scheduled reminders can be written.  I have mine on the wall behind my desk and frequently use it as a quick reference for future dates.

Click on each image below and print out the two pages (either as .docx or .doc files) on either side of one piece of paper.  Just change my name, at the top of the calendar page, to your name before you print it.




Or else you could print out these two pages (.pdf files), with no name on the calendar page.  If you would like a calendar with your name on it in a .pdf file, email me and I will try to send you one when I can find some free time.



If you’ve never read the Bible straight through, from cover to cover, you might want to do it in 2018.  Go to the following page, print out the pages in either .doc, .pdf, or .html format, and check off the passages as you read them:

Chronological List of Bible Passages

The Bible is God’s Law and Instruction Manual for life.  Don’t worry if you are unable to understand everything you read; eventually, God will give us answers to everything we wonder about.  One of the main things you will come to understand is God’s everlasting covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob—see God’s Covenant: with Israel or the Church?

So in case you’ve never read the Bible all the way through, do it!  If you’ve done it before, do it again; you never can get too much of God’s written Word!  I am in the process of doing it now, which I have done numerous times before.

You can read one of a number of Bible versions at BibleGateway.com.  If you read it for an average of 15 minutes a night before bed, you will sleep better for a whole year. 

Comparison between regular moon and supermoon size and brightnessIn other news, tonight there is a supermoon, which will be the largest and brightest full moon of 2018.  That is, it will be the closest that a full moon is to the earth during the entire year.

The moon will be its fullest at 9:24 p.m. EST = 6:24 p.m. PST.  This actually is at 2:24 a.m. UTC (Coordinated Universal Time).  So the moon will be totally full on Jan. 1 in the Western Hemisphere but on Jan. 2 in the Eastern Hemisphere.

It is very rare for there to be a full moon on New Year’s night.  It is extremely rare for that moon to be a supermoon and the biggest, brightest moon of the whole year.

There will be another full moon this month, on Jan. 31.  The second full moon in any month commonly is called a “blue moon,” although it isn’t actually blue.  It also will be a supermoon, but it will not be quite as large and close to the earth as the one tonight.

Super moon 2018: First of two full
January super moons is tonight

What’s even more amazing is that there will be an eclipse of the full, super, blue moon on Jan. 31.  The U.S. East Coast will catch a glimpse of the beginning of the eclipse, as the moon starts to pass through the Earth’s shadow early in the morning.

The Jan. 31 lunar eclipse will start at 5:51 a.m.  However, it will not be a total eclipse until the moon sets just after 7 a.m. EST.

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