Today, the U.S. Congress passed a stopgap, short-term spending bill. It will keep the federal government funded through December 3. This happened only hours before a government shutdown would have taken place at midnight EDT tonight.
The continuing resolution measure was passed by the Senate this morning with a vote of 65-35. Later, it was passed by the House with a vote of 254-175. President Biden is expected to sign the bill before midnight to prevent a government shutdown.
Included in the spending measure is $28 billion in disaster-aid funding for areas devastated by recent hurricanes Ida and Nicholas. Also, there is aid to Afghan refugees who are resettling in the U.S.
Not included in the spending bill was a measure to increase the U.S. debt ceiling. This issue must be addressed by October 18 or a debt default will occur. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and leading economists have warned that defaulting on the debt would have a “catastrophic” effect on the economy and on financial markets.
My friend’s garden in Marin County (north of San Francisco) is flourishing with many types of vegetables, herbs and hot peppers. He says the garden is “exploding”; I totally agree. That’s one of the main reasons why I like to come up here at this time of year.
I like all vegetables, but I especially like eating raw tomatoes. When I’m here, I easily can eat at least 2 or 3 big ones a day, along with countless smaller cherry tomatoes and raw basil leaves. Barry likes to make numerous batches of tomato sauce and freeze them in plastic containers to eat during the winter.
The U.S. Senate took a vote today on whether or not to begin debate on a short-term government funding bill. One thing the bill would have done is raise the U.S. debt limit. Also, it would have enabled the U.S. government to remain funded through December 3.
However the vote to begin debate failed by a vote of 50 to 48. It would have taken 60 “yes” votes to begin the debate. It appears to be increasingly likely that the federal government will shut down at midnight on September 30.
Many Democrats in the U.S. house are trying to pass a massive $3.5 trillion spending bill this week. Amazingly, President Biden said in a speech, “It’s going to cost nothing.”
This ejection can release large quantities of matter and electromagnetic radiation from the sun’s surface. The earth’s magnetic field generally shields the Earth’s ozone layer from most solar ejections and emissions that are directed toward our planet.
Sometimes a solar flare can cause a disturbance in Earth’s magnetic field, known as a solar storm or geomagnetic storm. The largest of these ever recorded on Earth was the Carrington Event of September 1 & 2, 1859. It took down parts of the U.S. telegraph network, gave some telegraph operators electric shocks and started fires.
A solar storm also can cause massive and long-lasting power and communication outages, including internet outages. An alert has been issued by the Space weather Prediction Center that a geomagnetic storm is set to hit Earth today, September 26. A strong storm could do considerable harm to electronics and electrical grids.
Fortunately, this solar storm is expected to be only minor to moderate. Hopefully, all it may do is enhance aurora views.
At Olive Tree Ministries today, Jan Markell and Michele Bachmann talked about how the coronavirus outbreak has led to many negative changes nationwide and worldwide. We have gone from “fifteen days to slow the spread of the virus” to near global tyranny, widespread shutdowns and beyond.
Now many people are being told that vaccine mandates will become mandatory. The Department of Labor has been developing an emergency rule to require all employers with 100 or more employees to ensure that all of the employees are vaccinated or show a negative rest result at least once a week. Also, nearly all federal workers are to be vaccinated. President Biden has said that a federal vaccine mandate “is not about freedom or personal choice.”
A leftist coup (illegal takeover of the government) in America and lawlessness in Washington have emerged. There is great concern by many that these things will continue.
Beyond that, we have seen a series of major debacles in Afghanistan for the past month. When up is down, black is white and evil is good, we know that God’s favor has been removed. Jan and Michele discussed these topics from biblical and prophetic perspectives and how the Church should contend with these things.
Last week in San Francisco, Mayor London Breed attended a live concert event at the Black Cat nightclub. A video on social media showed her dancing and singing along with others without wearing a mask.
An indoor mask mandate in San Francisco requires that people must wear a well-fitted mask at indoor public settings. A mask can be removed if someone is actively eating or drinking. However, Mayor Breed was not drinking or eating while she was dancing and singing.
In an interview days later, when Mayor Breed was questioned about what she did, she said that it was “nit-picking” and “really unfortunate.” Explaining her actions, she said, “Let me tell you. When the spirit moves you because you are watching history in the making, Bay Area royalty perform, I don’t know about you but I’m not gonna turn around and look for where my mask is or look to see and make sure I’m picking up a drink. I’m just gonna let the spirit move me.” However, an infectious disease doctor has said that what the mayor did was was risky and was sending the wrong message.
This KRON 4 News video is under 5 minutes in length:
As noted on Sep. 17, many thousands of Haitian immigrants have been illegally crossing over the U.S./Mexico border and congregating in the Texas border town of Del Rio. Earlier this week, after traveling to Del Rio Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas declared that the southern U.S. border is “not open.” He also said, “If you come to the United States illegally, you will be returned. Your journey will not succeed and you will be endangering your life and your family’s lives.”
Some expulsion flights of migrants back to Haiti have taken place. Two U.S. officials have said that single adults were the priority for expulsion flights.
Some Haitians have been bussed to El Paso, Laredo and Rio Grande Valley, while some are being flown to Tucson, Arizona, for processing by the Border Patrol at those locations. However, many Haitian migrants are being released into the United States, undercutting the Biden administration’s statements that the thousands in the camp faced immediate expulsion.
According to one U.S. official, with direct knowledge of operations, Haitians have been freed on a “very, very large scale.” Many have been released with notices to appear at an immigration office or report to an ICE office within 60 days. Yet, it is unknown how many of the migrants will actually do that.
Meanwhile, Mexico has begun busing and flying Haitian migrants away from the U.S. border. This signals a new level of support by Mexico for the U.S., as the migrant camp has presented President Biden with a humanitarian and increasingly political challenge.
All native-born Israelites are to construct and to dwell in booths or “sukkot” (which is the plural of booth or “sukkah”) for a week. This is a reminder to them of the temporary tabernacles in which their Israelite ancestors lived for 40 years after leaving ancient Egypt (Leviticus 23:42,43).
Jesus, whose birth was in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2; Matthew 2:1), most likely was born in a sukkah during Sukkot, not in a stable in December. The word “tabernacle,” used as a verb, means “to take up temporary residence, especially to inhabit a physical body” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary).
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the Only Begotten, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:14)
The words in that verse translated as “made his dwelling” among us are more accurately translated as “tabernacled” among us. So Jesus tabernacled with mankind for a few decades while He was here the first time.
Being a Jew, Jesus celebrated the Feast of Tabernacles and even taught in the temple courts during the days of this feast (John 7:1-44). In the future Messianic era, during the Millennium, Yeshua/Jesus the Messiah will return to tabernacle with us again. Representatives from the nations of the world will go to Jerusalem, where King Yeshua will be sitting on His throne, to observe the Feast of Tabernacles—essentially, a giant birthday celebration for Jesus:
At that time they will call Jerusalem The Throne of the LORD, and all nations will gather in Jerusalem to honor the name of the LORD. No longer will they follow the stubbornness of their evil hearts. (Jeremiah 3:17)
The LORD will be king over the whole earth. On that day there will be one LORD, and his name the only name. ... Then the survivors from all the nations that have attacked Jerusalem will go up year after year to worship the King, the LORD Almighty, and to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles. (Zechariah 14:9,16)
Today the stock market had its biggest one-day drop in just over two months, since July 19. One reason appeared to be a warning by Chinese real estate giant Evergrande that it is struggling to raise the cash needed to make interest payments on its debt this month. This escalated widespread concerns that risks could arise if Evergrande, the world’s most indebted property developer, starts defaulting on its massive $300 billion debt obligations.
Also, U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has urged Congress to raise or suspend the nation’s debt ceiling or risk “widespread economic catastrophe.” The Treasury could default on its bills by October 8 if a split Senate cannot reach a deal to raise the extremely high debt limit even further. This week, the U.S. House is set to vote on the debt ceiling to keep the government operating past the end of September.
Yesterday evening, the crew of the historic SpaceX Inspiration4 mission splashed down off the Atlantic coast of Florida at 7:06 p.m. EDT. They were in the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule which had been launched atop a reusable Falcon 9 rocket two days before that.
The crew had orbited the earth numerous times before returning. About an hour after the splashdown, following a recovery at sea, they safely exited the spacecraft.
It was the first time ever that a crew composed of private citizens had been launched into orbit. They traveled about 100 miles farther into space than the International Space Station and orbited Earth about every 90 minutes. Here is the crew of four:
Jared Isaacman (38), commander of the mission, is the founder and CEO of payments processing firm Shift4 Payments.
Hayley Arceneaux (29), a physician assistant at St. Jude, was the youngest American and the first person with a prosthetic body part to go into space.
Chris Sembroski (42), an Air Force veteran and aerospace data engineer at Lockheed Martin, won a seat aboard the flight in a sweepstakes giveaway that drew 72,000 applicants.
Sian Proctor (51), a geoscience professor at South Mountain Community College in Phoenix, Arizona, is a licensed pilot and major in Arizona’s Civil Air Patrol.
At Olive Tree Ministries today, Jan Markell spent the hour with Dr. Ron Rhodes at Lamb & Lion Ministries. Their main topic was the Pre-tribulation Rapture. It is a doctrine of imminence, which is a belief that the rapture could happen at any moment without any events required to take place before the Rapture occurs. If so, it should have a profound effect on how we live our lives in this world.
Rhodes believes that Afghanistan was part of the ancient region known as Magog, which is a large mountainous area west of the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea. He feels that, considering the recent takeover of Afghanistan by the Taliban, the Gog/Magog invasion of Israel, described in Ezekiel 38 & 39, could happen at any time. He believes that the following is the most likely chronology of events:
The Pre-tribulation Rapture of the Church will take place at least 3½ years before the beginning of the Tribulation period, which will consist of God’s wrath on the earth and upon humankind.
The Gog/Magog invasion of Israel will happen, with the middle of the Tribulation period being 7 years later, and Israel will use the enemy’s weapons for fuel by burning them up during that 7-year period (Ezekiel 39:9).
Following a covenant made by the Antichrist with Israel for one week (the 70th Week) of 7 years, the 7-year Tribulation period will begin.
Israel will be able to build their Temple on the Temple Mount, near the beginning of the final week of 7 years, since all Islamic opposition to Israel will have been eliminated by God.
After the Antichrist has signed a 7-year covenant with Israel, the first 3½ years of the Tribulation period will follow. Then the Antichrist will break the covenant with Israel, enter the Temple, and make that his headquarters for the next 3½ years.
Personally, I completely disagree with the Pre-tribulation view of the Rapture. I also disagree with the chronology of the events listed above. I have included Dr. Rhodes’ information in today’s entry because I think it is important for Christians to learn about the main Rapture views so that they can make up their own minds about the topic.
I believe that, most likely, the Gog/Magog invasion into Israel will take place near the end of the final 7 years of this age, not 3½ years before the beginning of that 7-year period. The burning of the enemy’s simple weapons (probably not the advanced weapons left behind in Afghanistan by the U.S.) will be during the first 7 years of the Millennium, following Jesus’ return to rule and reign.
I also believe that there will be a Pre-Wrath Rapture of Christian believers, most likely about a year prior to the end of the final 7 years of this age. God’s wrath, during the Day of the Lord period, will be encompassed only during that final year and not for the entire 7 years, much of which will consist of Satan’s wrath and man’s wrath upon mankind. A great deal more information about these and related topics can be found in these places:
Earlier this week, thousands of migrants showed up under an international bridge in Del Rio, Texas. The numbers have grown into an overwhelming surge. Two days ago, the number was up to at least 8,200; and yesterday, it increased to at least 9,300. Today, the number is over 12,000.
Evidently, a large majority of the migrants are Haitians. An increasing number are crossing the U.S./Mexico border, by the minute, and arriving at the bridge.
Del Rio’s Democratic mayor, Bruno Lozano, is very concerned about the large influx of migrants this week. He has described the situation as “beyond crisis. This is urgent. This is dire.”
Drone footage was captured at the scene two days ago. It shows vast numbers of people idling under and around the bridge while awaiting processing to enter the United States.
Today is the Day of Atonement or Yom Kippur. It is the highest holy day of the Hebraic year. Today also is the final day of the 40-day season of Teshuvah, a major period of repentance, asking God for forgiveness and returning to a meaningful relationship with Him.
God ordained this day in ancient Israel for the high priest to enter the Most Holy Place in the tabernacle, and later the temple. He was to make atonement for his sins and for the sins of the people (Leviticus 16:1-34).
Later, God also told Moses that this Day of Atonement was to be a special day of commemoration. It was to be a day of sacred assembly, a day to deny oneself (for example, to abstain from eating), and a day to refrain from work (Leviticus 23:26-32).
On Yom Kippur each year in ancient Israel, the high priest selected two goats that would be the slain goat and the “scapegoat”. It is because these goats made atonement for the sins and guilt of the people that the day was referred to as the Day of Atonement.
Following yesterday’s attempted recall election in California, a large majority of the ballots have been counted. Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom has survived the recall and will remain the state’s governor. So far, the count is 63.90% of voters against the recall and 36.08% of voters for the recall.
The push to recall Newsom began over a year ago. Many Californians were dissatisfied with Newsom’s many restrictions to the coronavirus and with the state’s high taxes.
Had Newsom lost the recall, the winner of the election would have been Republican Larry Elder. Newsom plans to run for re-election in November of 2022. Elder also has expressed an interest in running for goveror at that time as well.
On Mar. 18, it was noted that more than the required number of signatures had been obtained to force a Special Recall election for Governor Gavin Newsom of California. Today is the final day of that election. The last California governor recall election took place in 2003, when Gray Davis was recalled and replaced by Arnold Schwarzenegger.
On each ballot, there are two questions. The first question asks if Gavin Newsom should be recalled (removed) from the office of governor. If a voter answers “No” to that question, then the voter can choose either to respond or not to respond to the second question, which asks who should replace Newsom as governor.
If there are more “Yes” votes than “No” votes to the first question, then Governor Gavin Newsom will be recalled. In that case, on the list of 46 candidates from which to choose, the candidate who gets the most number of votes will become the next governor of California. On that list, there are 24 Republicans, 9 Democrats, 10 “No Party Preference” candidates, 2 Green Party candidates and 1 Libertarian candidate.
Polls are open today from 7:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. Most election results should be reported tomorrow. More than likely, Newsom will not be recalled but will continue as the state’s governor.
Tropical Storm Nicholas is expected to come on shore this evening in the area of Galveston, Texas. If its sustained winds reach 74 mph, it will make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane.
Nicholas will continue through eastern Texas and into Louisiana and Mississippi as a tropical storm and a tropical depression over the next few days. Storm surge watches and warnings are in effect from the mouth of the Rio Grande, in southern Texas, to Cameron, Louisiana.
For the next few days, rainfall totals for southeast Texas should average from 10 to 20 inches. However, amounts over 20 inches are possible. Drivers in Houston, the largest city in Texas, are warned to stay off the roads beginning this evening. Fortunately, Nicholas will not cause the extreme and extensive damage as Hurricane Ida did after it made landfall in southern Louisiana on Aug. 29.
Last night, a declassified and highly redacted 16-page document was released by the FBI. This was done following President Biden’s executive order a few days ago to make the document public. Over the next six months, other documents are expected to be released as well.
For years, many family members of victims killed in the September 11 attacks twenty years ago. They have been seeking records from the U.S. government hoping to show that Saudi Arabia was complicit in aiding those who hijacked the four planes that day.
Of the 19 hijackers, 15 of them were from Saudi Arabia. All of them were affiliated with the militant Islamist group al-Qaeda.
Some feel that the document and other information which has been gathered point to the Saudi government’s responsibility for the 9/11 attacks. Others feel that there is not enough evidence to confirm this. Saudi officials have denied it.
Today is Shabbat Shuvah, which means “Sabbath of Return.” It always is the weekly Sabbath/Shabbat between Rosh haShanah (the Feast of Trumpets) and Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement). Shabbat Shuvah also is a play on the phrase “Shabbat Teshuvah” or Sabbath of Repentance.
Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God, for he will freely pardon. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:6-9)
This is a day of reflection leading up to the highest holy day of Yom Kippur, which is a few days from now on Oct. 9. It is a time of penitence, seeking reconciliation with God, knowing that we have fallen short of His high expectations.
Today is the twentieth anniversary of the horrific and ghastly September 11 attacks by radical Islam on the USA. Let us keep in our minds and hearts the great sacrifice that thousands of people made with their lives on that day.
Many in the past have claimed that America is not at war with Islam and have insisted that “a religion did not attack us.” The problem is that true, Qur’an-believing Muslims are at war with the USA, with Israel, and frankly with everyone in the world who does not embrace Allah as “God” and Muhammad as “his Prophet.”
Thus, the idea that we are “not at war with Islam” is merely a “politically correct” notion accepted by those who are asleep and who have chosen not to perceive the obvious because they do not want to acknowledge it. Just as most Christians have not read the Bible from cover to cover, most Muslims have not read through the Qur’an.
Muslims and non-Muslims, alike, have been told that the Qur’an complements and sychronizes with the Bible. Yet, those who have read both books all the way through, which I strongly recommend doing, have seen that this is an erroneous assumption; the two books are incompatible in countless ways. Some ways are demonstrated in this section: Gabriel’s messages.
Here is an email response I wrote about some of Islam’s beliefs, mostly pertaining to Christians and their beliefs, included in the Qur’an:
Although “moderate” Muslims will point to passages in the Qur’an that promote “peace,” such harmony and unity is to be among “believers” who have embraced the god, prophet and tenets of Islam. All others (that is, the Mushrikûn), who have rejected these things, are to be captured, besieged, ambushed and killed. It has happened before, and I feel quite certain that it will happen again—only on a much larger, more mind-boggling scale. God—and I don’t mean Allah—help us.
At Olive Tree Ministries today, Jan Markell played a message given by Dr. David Reagan of Lamb & Lion Ministries. At a conference, he spoke to an audience about how Israel is the nation to watch as we approach the end of the age.
The theme of the conference, where Reagan spoke, was “What on Earth is God doing?” He noted how Israel is the focal point of end-time Bible prophecy. It is important to understand that every promise that God made to Israel either already has been fulfilled or is yet to be fulfilled. Israel is God’s “timepiece” to watch as we approach the end of the age.
Reagan gave an overview of the history of Israel in Bible prophecy, including Bible passages from as far back as Deuteronomy. He broke down his presentation into three sections:
four prophecies fulfilled before the 20th Century,
seven prophecies fulfilled in part or in whole during the 20th Century, and
five prophecies yet to be fulfilled.
Reagan’s portion of today’s program, lasting a little over 43 minutes, can be heard here:
In the History of California, it can be seen that California became a U.S. state on September 9, 1850. That was 171 years ago today.
Statehood took place during the California Gold Rush period from 1848 to 1855. The peak year of the immigration of gold-seekers was 1849, which initiated the term “forty-niners.”
News of the discovery of gold brought an influx of about 300,000 people into California, from other parts of the U.S. and other places in the world, to seek their fortunes of gold. Only a relatively few people received great wealth from the gold, but it did enhance the American economy.
I flew up to northern California yesterday to hang out with my friend in Marin County for awhile. The further north the plane went along the coast, the hazier the sky got. This was due partly to mild fog and partly to wildfire smoke.
I was impressed with his new car, a blue Toyota Prius. It’s got some nice features that I haven’t seen in other cars. He said that it usually gets about 55 miles per gallon.
Passing through San Francisco, I saw the highest prices for gasoline that I’ve seen in awhile. Of course, having a car that gets great gas mileage enables him not to need to fill it up very often.
At least the traffic through San Francisco to the Golden Gate Bridge was minimal and did not take very long. It was the exact opposite of the horrendously congested traffic that we experienced, while I was driving his car, a couple of years ago on Oct. 4, 2019.
After we got to his house, he prepared a very tasty dinner. He made excellent tomato sauce and pasta primavera with vegetables from his garden. As usual this time of year, his garden is exploding with vegetables, and I look forward to eating a lot of them while I’m here.
Today is the Feast of Trumpets, which actually began yesterday evening at sunset. It also is the Jewish New Year or Rosh haShanah, which means “head of the year.” Furthermore, it is a new moon (see September 2021 Moon Phases), which takes place on the first day of every Hebrew month. This is the month of Tishrei or Tishri, the first month on the Jewish secular calendar and the seventh month on the Jewish religious calendar.
Say to the Israelites: “On the first day of the seventh month you are to have a day of rest, a sacred assembly commemorated with trumpet blasts. Do no regular work, but present an offering made to the LORD by fire.” (Leviticus 23:24,25)
God ordained that trumpet blasts should be heard on the Feast of Trumpets (Leviticus 23:24; Numbers 29:1). This referred to blasts from a shofar or ram’s horn, which still is done today. In Jewish tradition, the final shofar blown on the Feast of Trumpets is known as “the last shofar.”
The first ten days of the first month of Tishrei, on the Hebrew calendar, are the “high holy days.” They often are called the “days of awe” (Yamim Nora’im) or the Ten Days of Repentance. It is a time to examine one’s ways, to repent from one’s sins and to return fully to God.
This period ends on Tishrei 10, the Day of Atonement or Yom Kippur, which is the highest holy day during the Jewish year. I believe that the Rapture of believers will occur on a future Feast of Trumpets. I also believe that Jesus will return to earth on a future Yom Kippur, to rule and reign for 1,000 years (the Millennium).
Today is Labor Day in the United States. It always is the first Monday in September, and it is the last national holiday during the summer season. In Canada, Labour Day also is celebrated on the first Monday in September.
The New York legislature was the first state legislature to introduce a Labor Day bill. However, Oregon was the first state to make Labor Day an official public holiday in 1887.
By the time it became an official federal holiday in 1894, thirty U.S. states observed Labor Day. More information about this day can be found at the United States Department of Labor website here:
Recently, the U.S. Treasury estimated that U.S. Social Security trust fund reserves will be depleted by 2033 and 2034. This will be sooner than the estimate that was made a year ago.
The Old-Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) trust fund is expected to pay full benefits only until 2033. After that, only about 76% of scheduled benefits will be paid. It also will be sooner than expected that the Disability Insurance (DI) trust fund benefits will have difficulties being paid.
One of the main reasons for all of this is the COVID-19 pandemic, which has caused a significant reduction in payroll tax revenue. Presumably, this situation will get worse if the pandemic continues indefinitely.
Moreover, the problem will be heightened by the increasing number of people in the generation of baby boomers (those born from 1946 to 1964) reaching retirement age. This is because many more people will be eligible to receive Social Security and Medicare payments, depleting the funds even faster.
At Olive Tree Ministries this weekend, Jan Markell spent the hour with Pastor Nathan Jones. They discussed some connections between digital technology and Bible prophecy. Jones feels that it is a precursor to the “mark of the beast” system, which will control how people think.
The rise of Big Tech may be setting the stage for scenes right out of the Book of Revelation. Smartphones have radically changed every aspect of teenagers’ lives, from social interactions to mental health. Where there are cell towers, there are teens living their lives on their smartphones. The internet and social media are addictive and cause pleasurable spikes of dopamine in the brain.
Digital technology keeps us informed and enables us to be connected with family members and friends. However, it also includes clip baiters, identity thieves and cyber bullies. An increasing number of people, including youngsters, are becoming more attached to electronics and detached from reality, which can become unsafe.
Electronic devices allow people to be tracked and followed without their being aware of it. All of their data is being stored in huge data centers, and this data can be used against them in the future. Also, microchips that are similar to credit card chips are being inserted into people’s hands. The chips include all of people’s important data and information about them.
Ultimately, this is setting the stage for control by a New World Order and the Antichrist, who is likened to a “beast” and who will have authority over the world for 42 months or 3½ years (Revelation 13:5-8). People will be forced to receive a mark on their right hands or foreheads, without which they cannot buy or sell (13:16-18).
Last week, on Aug. 26, two terrible suicide bombing attacks were made in Kabul, Afghanistan, by the ISIS-K terrorist group. Those killed included 13 U.S. service members. It was the deadliest day for American troops since 31 died in August 2011, when a Chinook helicopter was shot down by Taliban forces.
Also killed last week were an estimated 169 Afghans. The attack took place as the U.S. was evacuating Americans and at-risk Afghans from Kabul after the Taliban had taken control of virtually all of Afghanistan.
The attack killed eleven Marines, one Navy corpsman and one Army soldier. The ages of the majority of them were early twenties. Some of their names and stories can be seen here and, below that, pictures of the 13 service members:
In Texas, a law went into effect yesterday banning any abortion after a heartbeat can be detected in an embryo, usually about six weeks into the pregnancy. It is referred to as the Texas Heartbeat Act.
There were many requests to the U.S. Supreme Court by abortion rights supporters to overturn the new abortion ban law in Texas. However, later in the day, the Supreme Court voted 5 to 4 not to halt the Texas law that bans a majority of abortions. This allows the nation’s most restrictive abortion measure to remain in effect.
The Supreme Court majority in this case—Justices Thomas, Alito, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh and Barrett—said that their decision “is not based on any conclusion about the constitutionality of Texas’ law.” Challenges to the abortion law, including in Texas state courts, are expected to continue.
Decades ago, it was Norma McCorvey (alias “Jane Roe”) who wanted an abortion in Texas, where abortions were prohibited in most cases. In time, this progressed into the Roe v. Wade case in the U.S. Supreme Court. The case lasted a little over two years.
On January 22, 1973, the Supreme Court ruled that individual state laws banning abortion were unconstitutional. Many years later, McCorvey (“Roe”) said she regretted her part in the Supreme Court decision and became an anti-abortion advocate. The recent Roe v. Wade film presents arguments on both sides of the issue, and audience members are free to embrace either side.
The Texas legislature finally has passed a sweeping overhaul of the state’s election laws. Recently, the state House voted 80 to 41 to approve the the voting rights bill. Yesterday, the state Senate passed the measure with a vote of 18 to 13. Governor Abbott is expected to sign the bill soon.
Originally, the bill was meant to be considered at the end of the legislature’s regular session back in May. However, Democrats staged a mass walk-out, preventing there from being enough House members to actually take a vote.
Governor Abbott called a special session that began on July 8. However, over 50 House Democrats left the state and flew, on two chartered flights, to Washington, DC. They wanted to prevent the vote from taking place and also to draw the attention of the U.S. Congress to the Texas voting legislation, which they felt was unfair.
Abbott vowed to keep calling special sessions until there was a vote on the bill. Finally, after several weeks of many Democratic representatives remaining away from Texas, recently enough of them returned to the state to reach the 100-member quorum necessary to take a vote on the legislation. That vote passed in the state House on Aug. 19, and yesterday it passed in the state Senate.
After almost 20 years in Afghanistan, all of the remaining U.S. troops departed the country yesterday and last night. That barely met today’s deadline that the Taliban had set for all American forces to withdraw from Afghanistan.
The last serviceman to leave Afghanistan was Major General Chris Donahue. He is the commanding general of the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg in North Carolina. The photo was taken through a night vision scope.
Evidently, there still are a few hundred American citizens remaining in Afghanistan. There also are billions of dollars in U.S.-made weapons and equipment left behind that probably will not be able to be retrieved.
I listened quite a bit to American Family Radio (https://afr.net) this weekend, as I often do. One program that I often find interesting is “I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist” with Dr. Frank Turek. Sunday’s program was a repeat of one of his programs from last week.
Frank interviewed William J. Federer. He is a nationally known speaker and best-selling author. He also is the president of Amerisearch, Inc., a publishing company dedicated to researching America’s noble heritage.
Federer gave his explanation of how and why violent attacks have been taking place in Kabul, Afghanistan, since last week. This violence is likely to continue. He explained why this really is an example of true, fundamentalist Islam.
He also provided an excellent overview of the history of Islam and terrorists in Afghanistan, beginning with Muhammad: a religious leader, a political leader and a military leader. Federer explained how Islam has progressed into what it is today and made several references to the primary Islamic holy book: the Qur´an.
The podcast of this program can be heard below. It is a little over 54 minutes in length.
Exactly 16 years ago today, on Aug. 29, 2005, major Hurricane Katrina made landfall over southeast Louisiana. It was a Category 3 hurricane, although it had attained Category 5 strength a couple of days before that.
Ida, which is stronger than Katrina was when it came ashore exactly 16 years ago, struck near Port Fourchon, Louisiana, around 11:55 a.m. local time. It made landfall about 45 miles west of where Katrina landed. Extreme flash flooding, wind damage and massive power outages are expected along coastal areas of Louisiana and Mississippi.
In a news briefing today, New Orleans’ Mayor LaToya Cantrell said, “Be calm in the midst of this storm. ... You have everything that you need. We will get through this together. Be prepared, stay where you are.” Louisiana’s governor, John Bell Edwards, said, “We’re as ready as we can be. It’s going to be a very, very challenging storm.”
They asked and discussed questions, noting that reprobate minds cannot reason or draw proper conclusions about them:
What did you expect the predicted last days’ peril to look like?
Can we be salt and light in the meantime?
Are the pulpits addressing the critical issues of our day?
The Taliban took over Kabul, Afghanistan, on Aug. 24. Two days later, on Aug. 26 Islamic suicide bombers killed and injured many people in two locations near the Kabul airport. This probably was only the beginning of numerous terrorist attacks that will take place.
That nation, or at least a portion of it, may be part of the area prophetically known as Magog. It very well may be that the time of Gog and Magog, described in Ezekiel 38 and 39, is near.
Tropical Storm Ida formed in the Caribbean Sea yesterday and is crossing over the Cayman Islands today. It is heading toward the Gulf of Mexico.
It is expected to approach the northern Gulf Coast on Sunday. A hurricane watch is in effect for New Orleans and a long stretch of the Louisiana coast.
Ida is forcast to reach at least major Category 3 status and possibly Category 4 status before it comes ashore. The forecast cone indicates possible landfall between Port Arthur, Texas, and Biloxi, Mississippi, with an emphasis on the Louisiana coast.
Today, outside the airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, there was a complex attack made by ISIS-K, which is an affiliate of the ISIS terrorist group. ISIS-K is an enemy of the Taliban.
The attack involved at least two explosions that most likely were suicide bombings. One bomb exploded outside one of the main gates at the airport. Another bomb exploded in the vicinity of the Baron Hotel, near the airport. After the bombs went off, several gunmen also opened fire on many others.
At least 12 U.S. service members were killed, and at least 15 others were injured. This was the deadliest day for American troops since 31 died in August 2011, when a Chinook helicopter was shot down by Taliban forces. Also today, at least 60 Afghan civilians were killed, and at least 143 others were injured. The death count is expected to rise.
Marine General Frank McKenzie, commander of the U.S. Central Command was asked if the U.S. would take military action against those responsible. He said, “Yes. If we can find who is associated with this, we will go after them.” He expects that attacks like these will continue.
In early 2019, the Trump administration implemented the program known as the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP). It stated that asylum seekers should not enter the U.S. over the southern border without having legitimately received political asylum status from an immigration judge.
Under this rule, they had to remain in Mexico until they attended their hearings in immigration court or received a response to their applications. This could take several months.
Once President Biden took office in January 2021, one of his first actions was to pause and subsequently rescind the MPP policy. He declared it to be inhumane and ineffective.
Earlier this month, U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, in the Southern District of Texas, ordered Biden to reimplement the MPP policy, newly named the “Remain in Mexico” program. He indicated that the current administration did not measure the consequences when lifting this policy.
Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld Judge Kacsmaryk’s decision. The vote was 6 to 3, with Justices Breyer, Sotomayor and Kagan dissenting. The court majority agreed that the Biden administration had not done enough to state why it was changing the policy.
The Taliban has been taking over the nation of Afghanistan from May 1 through mid-August. They took over the capital, Kabul, on Aug. 15. Since then, people have been trying to fly out of the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul to evacuate the country.
President Biden originally had set August 31 as the final date to remove U.S. military forces from Afghanistan. Since then, he has talked about extending that deadline awhile longer.
However, the Taliban has made it clear that they want all foreign forces to be out of Afghanistan by Aug. 31. They have said that there will be no extension to that deadline.
Those military members and U.S. citizens left behind in Afghanistan will be in great danger. Many feel that this situation is destined to become very catastrophic.
Today the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted full approval to the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine. It is approved for use in people age 16 and older. It will continue to be available to those age 12 to 15 under emergency use authorization.
This is the first COVID-19 shot to receive approval beyond emergency use authorization in the U.S. So far, over 200 million doses of this vaccine have been administered across the country.
This full approval allows Pfizer and BioNTech to market their vaccine directly to customers. The new tradename of this vaccine is Comirnaty. It is a messenger RNA (mRNA) based vaccine.
Islamic extremists, who now have taken back Afghanistan by force, have a history of brutality, including beheadings and public executions. Time is short and the need is urgent, and that is why I am calling for a day of prayer this Sunday, August 22.
This is a life-or-death situation for Christians and other religious minorities in Afghanistan, and for all those who worked with or for America over the past two decades. There is no hope for these people to get out safely—apart from a miracle from the hand of God—and that’s what we need to pray for.
It is a difficult and tragic situation. Will you please join me in praying for God to intervene in a mighty way?
Jan and Pete talked about “The Giant” visiting 21 cities in 2021. It talks, moves, sings and impersonates famous people. They considered the possibility that it could morph into the “image of the beast” spoken about in Revelation 13:14,15.
Next, Tim interviewed Jan about troubling church issues in a “Christ in Prophecy” podcast produced by Lamb & Lion Ministries. She feels that we have been in the most profound and stunning times in the topics that Olive Tree Ministries covers on a daily basis. There seems to have been a decreasing amount of interest by the Church in what has been going on prophetically.
This may have changed somewhat in the past year, due to what the pandemic has done to the world and to the Church. People are running away from reality because reality is getting increasingly scary. For the Christian, this should not be the case. Fortunately, with the stage being set for a global government, many in the Church now seem to be having more interest in prophetic issues.
There is an agenda by the globalist system to attain world power. They have used the COVID pandemic, racial strife and widespread violence as a collective global crisis to move toward launching a global government. Many of those who are claiming that they want power to quell the unrest are the ones who have been fomenting it all along. Anything that is lawless is not of God; it is of the Antichrist spirit, which is seeking to gain power over the whole world.
The following was a portion of my daily Bible reading today:
Say among the nations, “The LORD reigns.” The world is firmly established, it cannot be moved; he will judge the peoples with equity. Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad; let the sea resound, and all that is in it; let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them. Then all the trees of the forest will sing for joy; they will sing before the LORD, for he comes, he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world in righteousness and the peoples in his truth. (Psalm 96:10-13)
We constantly hear about the need for equity, justice, fairness, and freedom from bias and favoritism in the world. However, no mortal human beings are capable of providing this for on an ongoing and permanent basis. The only one who can do this is Jesus/Yeshua.
This will take place when the Kingdom of God comes to earth and Jesus begins to rule and reign over the whole world in perfect righteousness, justice, fairness, peace and love. Jesus will be the Light at the end of the present dark tunnel of problems, pandemics and pandemonium.
For older adults, injuries from falls and car crashes are more common than when they were younger. In many cases, the injuries can have devastating consequences.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a page describing numerous ways for older adults to avoid common injuries. They are divided into four main categories, each of which includes subcategories:
U.S. health officials said today that they plan to begin offering COVID-19 booster shots to Americans this Fall. The booster shots should be available beginning September 20.
This mainly is due to concerns about the spread of the highly contagious Delta variant of the virus over the past few months. Those who received the second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine in the previous eight months should be eligible for a booster shot.
However, World Health Organization (WHO) officials said that there isn’t enough data to support COVID-19 booster doses. They called for a moratorium on COVID-19 booster shots to give countries with scarce vaccine supplies a chance to make more progress.
The gigantic Dixie Fire in northern California has been burning over a month, since July 14. It is the largest California wildfire in 2021 and the second largest wildfire in California history.
The fire has destroyed the majority of some small towns. These include Greenville on Aug. 4 and Canyondam on Aug. 6. Now the blaze is headed toward Susanville.
As of this morning, the Dixie Fire had destroyed at least 604,511 acres in four counties: Butte, Plumas, Lassen and Tehama. So far, the fire is only 31% contained. Smoke has caused unhealthful air quality in states east of California, including Nevada, Utah and Colorado.
Fire crews are facing a new bout of dry, heavy winds that started late yesterday afternoon. The winds are expected to continue, with a red flag warning, through at least tomorrow afternoon.
Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) company has issued a public notice warning that it is likely to cut power to thousands of homes and businesses, beginning this evening. The purpose of this power shutdown is to reduce the wildfire risks posed by possible wind damage to its transmission lines.
The cause of the Dixie Fire remains under investigation. PG&E has said that the blaze may have started when a tree fell onto one of the utility’s power cables.
Yesterday, the Taliban reached and captured the country’s capital Kabul, with a population of over 4½ million, and the nation’s government fell. President Ashraf Ghani fled the country, and the Taliban occupied the Presidential Palace.
The U.S. Embassy in Kabul issued an urgent alert warning American citizens to “shelter in place” amid reports of gunfire at the airport. Eventually, all American diplomats were moved from the embassy to the airport.
Both yesterday and today, chaos has ensued as Afghans rushed to Hamid Karzai International Airport, located 16 miles from the center of the city. They desperately wanted to flee after the Taliban takeover. Hundreds of them tried to get onto parked planes. Some were hanging on to the sides of a military transport jet as it departed, and a few died when they fell to the tarmac below. Others waited in very long lines in the airport to get flights out of the country.
The 20-year-long war between the government of Afghanistan and the Taliban has reached a climax. Kabal has fallen, and the Taliban are in control of the country. It probably will not be long before the flag of Afghanistan is changed to the flag of the Taliban and Sharia Islamic law goes into effect throughout the country.
The huge 7.2 magnitude earthquake that struck Haiti yesterday is considered to be a “major quake” on the Richter Scale. As of this morning, the death toll had risen to 724 people with more than 2,800 people injured. It is the deadliest earthquake in the world so far in 2021, and these numbers are expected to increase.
This 2021 Haiti earthquake, near Les Cayes, flattened thousands of homes and buildings in that area of the Caribbean nation. Churches, hotels, hospitals and schools were destroyed or badly damaged. There also was significant damage to infrastructure and roads. Rescue workers are continuing to search for survivors buried under collapsed buildings.
The rescue efforts will be made much more complicated by the arrival of Tropical Storm Grace, which is set to lash Haiti with heavy rainfall tomorrow. The U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) has said there is the possibility of flash flooding, strong winds and mudslides due to the storm.
This earthquake was even stronger than the 2010 Haiti earthquake, a 7.0 magnitude major quake that shook the nation on January 12, 2010. However, that quake was much closer to the highly populated capital, Port-au-Prince, and killed an estimated 220,000 people.
At Olive Tree Ministries today, Jan Markell spent the hour with Dr. Ed Hindson at The King is Coming. In Dr. Hindson’s words, “God has planned an incredible and eternal experience for every believer. We were created for eternity and redeemed for eternity. But life has a way of focusing our attention on our immediate cares and not on our ultimate goal. We are easily caught up in our daily tasks that take most of our time and attention away from the ultimate purpose for which we are created. The Bible reminds us that while God has made everything beautiful in its time, He also has put eternity in our hearts (Ecclesiastes 3:11). No matter how hard we try, we are never satisfied with anything less than that which is eternal. Eternity is a long time; it lasts forever and ever. Sometimes people ask, ‘What will we be doing all that time?’ They assume that once we die and go to heaven, that’s all there is to our eternal life. But the Bible promises so much more.”
Jan and Ed talked about the seven things in the future of every believer. Since eternity is written in people’s hearts, we need to learn what these things represent and our roles in them. All of them represent our future glory. They include the following:
the Rapture (1 Corinthians 15:50-55; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-17),
the Father’s House and Our Home (John 14:2; Philippians 3:20),
the Judgment Seat of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:10),
the Marriage Supper of the Lamb (Revelation 19:7-9),
the Second Coming of Jesus and His Kingdom (Matthew 6:10; Revelation 11:15),
the Millennial Reign (Revelation 20:6), and
the New Heavens and the New Earth (Revelation 21:1,5).
Personally, I agree with the majority of the points made by Jan Markell and Ed Hindson. Among other things, I agree with their views on the Millennium and the New Heaven and New Earth (see old and new Creations).
Those who believe in a Pre-tribulation Rapture feel that the whole tribulation period will consist of the wrath of God. I am convinced that, during that period, only a portion of it—the Day of the Lord or day of vengeance—will comprise God’s wrath and will be preceded by the Pre-Wrath Rapture.
I definitely do believe in a main Rapture event, but I see it as a Pre-wrath Rapture rather than as a Pre-tribulation Rapture, with which I disagree:
The U.S. Senate has been debating an infrastructure deal for awhile. Yesterday, a huge $1.2 trillion bill was passed, 69 to 30, on a bipartisan vote.
The bill was spearheaded by a group of senators led by Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) and Rob Portman (R-OH). Nineteen GOP senators voted with all of the Democratic senators to pass the legislation.
Now, the bill is headed to the House of Representatives. However, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) vowed that she would not take it up unless the Senate passes the second part of the infrastructure deal. That is a gigantic $3.5 trillion spending package, which includes the top priorties of Democrats.
Early this morning, about 4:00 a.m. EDT, the senate approved the additional $3.5 trillion package, which is piled high with progressive priorities. It was passed by a narrow vote of 50 to 49.
The House is expected to return the week of Aug. 23 to vote on the budget resolution. It could pave the way for Congress to pass a gigantic package that is totally filled with social and progressive priorities.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced his resignation today. He said that he will leave office two weeks from today, on Aug. 24.
His resignation follows several scandals and multiple urgings for him to resign, even from many fellow-Democrats including President Joe Biden and NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio. He will be the third New York governor in a row, following Eliot Spitzer and David Paterson, to leave office after scandals.
Andrew Cuomo’s father, Mario Cuomo, also served as governor of New York, from 1983 through 1994. Mario served 3 full terms, while Andrew has served over 2½ terms so far. Governor Andrew Cuomo will be succeeded by Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, who will serve out the remainder of Cuomo’s term. She will become the first female governor of the state of New York.
The 2020 Summer Olympics, taking place in Tokyo, Japan in the summer of 2021, are over. The charts below show the top three nations in order of the number of gold medals that they had accumulated up to that day.
Overall, as of the final day, the United States had received the most number of gold medals (39)—barely surpassing China—silver medals (41) and bronze medals (33). The U.S. also had gained the most number of medals overall (113).
As of the last day, Great Britain and the ROC (Russian Olympic Committee) had acquired more medals, in some medal categories, than China and Japan. However, everyone was outperformed by the United States in gold, silver, bronze and total medals.
This is the first full day of the season of Teshuvah, which began yesterday at sunset. It is a 40-day season each year, with the first 30 days (the “days of repentance”) extending to Rosh haShanah = Feast of Trumpets and the final 10 days (the “days of awe”) ending on Yom Kippur = Day of Atonement.
The season of Teshuvah always begins on a new moon. This is an example of how God uses lights in the sky (particularly the sun and the moon) as “signs to mark seasons and days and years” (Genesis 1:14).
Most likely, it was during this 40-day period that Jesus was fasting in the desert, after which He was being tempted by the devil (Matthew 4:1-11). Yet, He resisted all of Satan’s temptations, which was an example to all who believe in Him and follow Him: Yeshua Messiah.
During this time, we mortal people are to examine our lives, repent of our sins and transgressions, turn back to God in revival and with refreshing and be restored back to an active relationship with God and with other people, with whom relationships may have been damaged. A common chapter in the Bible to read during this time is Psalm 51:1-19.
We all have times of personal rebellion against God. This is a time to ask Him to show us favor, according to His faithful love and vast compassion, to wipe out our manifold rebellions. In Hebrew (translated into English), the following is read each day (from right to left):
With the spike in the Delta variant of the coronavirus in the past few months, people are being urged to return to wearing masks, even those who have been vaccinated. However, even though the Delta variant is more contagious, symptoms generally are not worse than with the main COVID-19 virus, and hospitalizations and deaths have flatlined.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a vaccine provides immunity to a viral or a bacterial disease, meaning it prevents the disease. For instance, a tetanus or smallpox vaccine prevents someone from getting tetanus or smallpox. However, a COVID-19 vaccine does not prevent a coronavirus infection; it simply reduces the symptoms of the disease. That explains why many “breakthrough” coronavirus cases have occurred in people who have been fully vaccinated. In fact, Dr. Anthony Fauci has testified before Congress that this so-called “vaccine” was never intended to prevent infection, although it may protect against serious disease.
Jan presents a recent clip of internist, cardiologist and virologist Dr. Peter A. McCullough, which lasts under 5 minutes. He talks about a number of reasons why he no longer supports giving COVID vaccines:
Many of those who have received two injections of the vaccine still are catching the COVID virus. Many others are getting numerous side-effects that can include anaphylaxis, allergic reactions, blood clots, myocarditis, vascular issues, cardiac arrest, nervous system disorders, pregnancy adverse events, sensory and cognition problems, extreme fatigue, strokes, and even death. These and other possible side-effects are listed here: RealRisks.org.
There is increased talk of shutdowns taking place again in many places. Employees of various businesses and organizations are being given the choice to be vaccinated or else are being forced to leave their jobs. Vaccine mandates are one of the main topics of discussion everywhere. Yet, countless adverse effects have occurred in people who have been vaccinated, which is why a therapeutic drug such as Hydroxychloroquine may be a better option, although some side-effects can occur with it.
The U.S. government and media are creating a great deal of opposition to those who have not received any COVID vaccinations. Many are saying it is time for President Biden to make the case for a vaccine requirement. According to the U.S. Justice Department, federal law does not prohibit COVID-19 vaccine requirements. So this very well may be on the horizon.
Coronavirus cases worldwide have surpassed the 200 million level. It took over a year for COVID-19 cases to hit the 100 million mark, while the next 100 million were reported in just over the past six months.
The Delta variant, first detected in India, is extremely contagious. It appears to be the main reason for the significant increase in COVID cases globally.
These countries report the most cases on a seven-day average: United States, Brazil, Indonesia, India and Iran. Collectively, they represent about 38% of all of the global cases reported each day.
Today is the 35th birthday of the world’s oldest panda. That would be about 105 in human years. His name is An An and lives in Hong Kong.
It is the 231st birthday of the United States Coast Guard, one of America’s six armed forces. Originally, when founded in 1790, it was known as the Revenue Marine. It was founded by Alexander Hamilton, the first Secretary of the Treasury, to enforce federal tariff and trade laws, as well as to prevent smuggling.
It also is the 60th birthday of Barack Obama. He and Michelle were planning to host a huge birthday bash today at Martha’s Vineyard. Hundreds of attendees would have had to submit proof of negative COVID-19 tests. However, due to the spike in Delta variant infections, the guests attending the event now will include only family members and close friends.
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced today that New York City will soon require proof of COVID-19 vaccinations for anyone who wants to dine indoors at any restaurant, see a performance at an indoor entertainment venue, or go to an indoor fitness facility. NYC will be the first big city in the U.S. to impose such restrictions.
The new requirement will be launched on August 16. It will be phased in over several weeks in August and September. People will have to show proof that they have had at least one dose of a vaccine. Vaccination cards will be accepted as proof of inoculation, along with state and city apps.
This is the most aggressive step that the city has taken yet to curb a surge in cases caused by the Delta variant of the coronavirus. According to de Blasio, “The goal here is to convince everyone that this is the time. If we’re going to stop the delta variant, the time is now. And that means getting vaccinated right now.”
I listened quite a bit to American Family Radio (https://afr.net) this weekend, as I often do. One program that I often find interesting is “I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist” with Dr. Frank Turek. Sunday’s program was a repeat of one of his programs from last week.
Frank’s program contained numerous answers to this question: “What evidence do you have that God exists?” His answers were based on a philosophical principle that is the foundation of all science: the law of causality. Basically, every effect has a cause.
He talked about how numerous attributes of God can be demonstrated simply by looking at effects around us. So the existence of God, the Creator of all things, can be seen by examining the things in His creation. This parallels something that Paul said in the Bible book of Romans:
For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. (Romans 1:20)
Of course, many people have objections to effects being caused by God, and Frank also addressed some of these objections. The podcast of this program can be heard below. It is a little over 48 minutes in length.
On American Family Radio (AFR) today, Jan Markell spent the hour with Bill Koenig. One thing they talked about was how the world has changed in just a few months. They discussed this radical transformation, the vaccine push, the snooping on social media and on personal texts, and more. They questioned, “Who is really running our country?”
According to Bill, “The world has fundamentally changed. However, there are many in society, and even in Christianity, who are in denial that the world has fundamentally changed. A lot of people who are not willing to understand what’s happening, prophetically, put themselves in denial. They pretend it’s not happening, and that hurts them spiritually. Prophecy is there to prepare us, to create an urgency in us, to create righteousness and morality in us. So if people, Christians in particular, think that we’re going to get past all of this and then we’re going to return back to normal, they have a rude awakening coming.” He also said that “God is allowing evil to do what it wants to do so that, eventually, God will judge evil in the tribulation. So this is the main reason we’ve seen the world change.”
A Socialist and Marxist agenda is being implemented in the U.S. government by globalists. Most likely, the World Economic Forum (WEF) is going to act at some point. What’s happening in America now is not progressivism or Democratic socialism. It is an Americanized form of Marxism, which has been increasing for 25 to 30 years, especially in our educational institutions.
Jan and Bill also talked about the coronavirus vaccines. The government is sending people door-to-door to find out who has been vaccinated and, for those who have not, to motivate them to be vaccinated. However, concerns have been raised over some of the vaccines. For instance, many people have negative reactions to some of the vaccines, including people with auto-immune conditions. Also, many people who have been vaccinated are now coming down with the new Delta variant of the virus, known as “vaccine breakthrough” cases, which are over 90% of new cases in the U.S.
The majority of large cities in the U.S. have homelessness problems. Those who are without a place to live will place their belongings and sleep in encampments in various locations. Often this is on city streets, overpasses, underpasses, freeway ramps, tunnels, bridges, subways, parks and other public places.
The city of Los Angeles, CA, is no exception. With a population of about 4 million people, it is the third largest city in North America, after Mexico City and New York City.
Yesterday, the L.A. City Council approved Los Angeles Municipal Code 41.18 to restrict sleeping and homeless encampments in certain areas of the city. The ordinance was passed with a vote of 13 to 2.
Mayor Eric Garcetti signed the ordinance on the same day. It will go into effect 30 days after being signed, which will be on August 28.
Last night, numerous protesters unhappy with the anti-camping ordinance congregated at Mayor Garcetti’s house. Some of them vandalized the mansion before leaving. Demonstrators scrawled messages on the pillars and sidewalk in front of the mansion, and toilet paper was strewn along the fencing and shrubs.
A massive magnitude 8.2 earthquake struck off the coast of southern Alaska last night. It occurred at 10:15 p.m. local time. The shaking lasted for about 2 minutes.
The epicenter of the 2021 Chignik earthquake, near Chignik Bay, was more than 60 miles southeast of the coastal village of Perryville, Alaska. This was rated as a “great quake” on the Richter Scale. It was the largest earthquake in the U.S. since the magnitude 8.7 1965 Rat Islands earthquake, which took place over 56 years ago.
The Chignik quake caused no injuries or major damage. It was followed by several aftershocks, two of which were magnitudes 5.9 and 6.1. A tsunami warning initially was in effect but later was canceled.
Waves from the very strong quake traveled thousands of miles across the U.S. They were detected as far away as southern Florida and Maine. The Geological Survey of Alabama, about 3,700 miles southeast of the earthquake’s epicenter, revealed a detailed graph of the quake’s waves. Those waves were too small to feel but large enough to measure, according to the Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology (IRIS).
Just over a week ago, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advised that vaccinated teachers and students don’t need masks. However, yesterday it reversed that position and issued new guidelines.
Now the CDC is recommending indoor-mask mandates even for fully vaccinated people, especially in areas experiencing spikes in COVID-19 cases. The very contagious Delta variant of the coronavirus is spreading quickly in many places. Also, many people who have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19 are being infected by the Delta variant, although symptoms typically are not as bad as in infected people who have not been vaccinated.
Also, the agency said it now is urging everyone in K-12 schools to wear a mask after returning to classes next month. This is regardless of vaccination status.
The CDC reversals probably will renew mask debates in many school districts across the country. There likely will be protests, particularly by those who are against students being forced to be masked for another school year.
At several U.S. airports, especially in some western states, there is not enough jet fuel for flight demands. The number of public flights is somewhat higher now than a year ago, when the COVID pandemic decreased public travel significantly. However, the amount of jet fuel that was reduced on pipelines, due to less flights, has not been increased to adequate levels yet.
Another factor is the major onslaught of wildfires this summer, especially in the western U.S. There is a significant increase in the number of planes with firefighters sent to those areas to help fight the fires. So more of the fuel that would go to planes for domestic flights is going to the firefighting planes.
Also, some aircraft are carrying more fuel than they normally do. This is so that they do not need as much if they need to refuel at an airport where there is a limited amount.
We do not confess our sins to God to attain eternal salvation. The latter occurs when we verbally confess that Jesus is Lord and we believe, in our hearts, that Jesus was raised from the dead.
That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. (Romans 10:9,10)
However, when we sin, a barrier is created between us and the Lord, and this interrupts our close relationship and continual fellowship with Him in our daily lives. This is why we need to confess our sins to God. By doing so on a regular basis, we regain God’s forgiveness, our offenses are cleansed away and our ongoing fellowship with Him is restrengthened.
If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us. (1 John 1:8-10)
At Olive Tree Ministries today, Jan Markell spent the hour with Pastor Brandon Holthaus. They talked about there is one sure indicator that the hour is late, and that is the state of the church. “Wokism” may be the worst form of end-time apostasy, and it appears to have consumed much of today’s church.
Apostasy involves falling away or departing from faith in God. The Holy Spirit has warned how this will transpire near the end of the age:
Now the Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. (1 Timothy 4:1)
For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. (2 Timothy 4:3,4)
Remnant believers feel lost in a sea of dysfunctional churches. Jan and Brandon discussed what are the things to look for to see if your church, Bible school or seminary has drunk the “woke Kool-Aid.” After being closed for so long due to the COVID pandemic, many churches have been “waking up” to wokeism. At its core, it wants a war against God and everything He stands for.
Many churches feel that we can build a utopia—essentially, the Kingdom of God—on earth. Then Jesus will be welcomed back into a perfect world that we have made for Him. Many of them have felt that adopting Marxist principles, including wokeism and attempting to heal all of the social ills in the world, will help them to do this. However, that is a futile effort, since this world is prophesied to fall apart, and thenJesus will return to heal and restore the world, which only He can do.
The Summer Olympic Games began today in Tokyo, Japan, beginning with the opening ceremonies. They were postponed from taking place a year ago, due to the COVID pandemic; however, officially they still are being called the 2020 Summer Olympics. The games are scheduled to continue for a little over 2 weeks, until August 8.
There was widespread concern that the games might be canceled at the last minute, since cases of coronavirus in Tokyo have hit a six-month high. The friends and families of competing athletes will not be allowed to attend the games, so the stadium will be mostly empty.
The U.S. Treasury Department, the Internal Revenue Service and the Bureau of Fiscal Service have announced that another round of 2.2 million stimulus checks have been disbursed, with a value of over $4 billion. The total covers disbursements over the past six weeks. It brings the total number of payments, under the American Rescue Plan, to more than 171 million.
About 158.5 million households are expected to receive the third round of direct payments. The payments include $1,400 per eligible individual and a $1,400 bonus per independent.
Although the payments are automatic for most people, the IRS urges people who don’t normally file a tax return and have not received Economic Impact Payments to file a 2020 tax return to get all the benefits they’re entitled to under the law.
There is no excuse not to believe in God. His invisible qualities and His glory are seen in nature around us, all of which He created.
For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. (Romans 1:20)
Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, O you gates; lift them up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. Who is he, this King of glory? The LORD Almighty—He is the King of glory. (Psalm 24:8-10)
The crew of Blue Origin, headed by Jeff Bezos, made a short journey into space this morning. They took off from a private launch site near Van Horn, Texas.
Along with Jeff Bezos were his brother Mark Bezos, Mary Wallace “Wally” Funk and Oliver Daemen. Funk, 82, is the oldest person and Daemen, 17, is the youngest person ever to fly into space. Daemen will be 18 on Aug. 20, one month from today.
They all flew up on the New Shepard rocket ship. The spacecraft took off at 8:12 a.m. local time. Two minutes into the flight, the capsule separated from its rocket and continued upwards just beyond the Kármán line, the most widely recognized boundary of space, 100 kilometers or 62 miles above the earth.
After weightlessness was attained, some of the crew performed somersaults and tumbles in the air for a few minutes. They also could see stunning views of the earth out of the windows.
The capsule landed with the help of parachutes. The whole trip, up and back, lasted a little over 10 minutes.
Fears are increasing that rapidly spreading coronavirus variants, such as the SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant, are threatening economic recovery. This evidently was a major factor in stock market declines today in the U.S. and many other places globally.
At its lowest point today, the Dow Industrials index had dropped 2.73% from yesterday’s close. That was the greatest single-day percentage drop since the 3.43% decline back on Oct. 28, 2020.
Although COVID cases and deaths have declined in the past few months, they have been increasing more recently, mostly due to the spreading of the Delta variant. In the U.S., this is the case in all 50 states. Many places where outdoor mask mandates were dropped are reinstating them again.
Many analysts feel that this is merely a temporary blip in stock market activity. Others feel that the stock market could be in the early stages of entering correction territory, which would be a 10% or more drop from the Dow’s all-time high close of 34,996.18 on July 12. At the close today, the Dow was down 3.0% from that record high. Time will tell.
From sunset yesterday and through today, the 9th of Av, the Jewish commemoration of Tisha B’Av is taking place. It is the saddest day on the Jewish calendar, marking numerous tragedies over many centuries. These include the Babylonian Empire’s destruction of the First Temple in 586 BCE and the Roman Empire’s destruction of the Second Temple in 70 CE.
At sunset today and through tomorrow, the 9th of Dhu al-Hijjah, the Islamic commemoration of the Day of Arafah will take place. It is the holiest day on the Islamic calendar. It is followed by the four-day Islamic holiday of Eid al Adha.
Over 1,600 Jews visited the Temple Mount today. A small group of Israeli Jews was praying at the site, in observance of Tisha B’Av. However, ever since the Six-Day War in 1967, when the Islamic Jordanian Waqf was given religious authority over the mount, Jews have been allowed to visit but not to pray on the Temple Mount.
Prior to the arrival of the Jewish visitors, dozens of Muslim worshippers were barricaded on the Temple Mount and had clashes with police. They threw rocks at the police from the al-Aqsa Mosque and chanted, “With our soul and blood, we will redeem you, al-Aqsa.” Violent demonstrators were cleared from the area.
Following the clashes, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett held a meeting with the Israeli public security minister and the police inspector general. Bennett stated that the organized and safe visits to the Temple Mount by Jews could continue and that order would be maintained.
Many Islamic groups—as well as Jordan, Turkey and Egypt—adamantly condemned Bennett’s statement and the Jewish visits to the site. The Islamic Ra’am party, which happens to be part of Bennett’s governing coalition, stated that “the Al-Aqsa Mosque, in its 144 dunams, is solely the property of Muslims, and no one else has any right to it.” They warned that “the events that may result from it could inflame the situation in Jerusalem and the entire region, leading to a catastrophic religious war.”
At Olive Tree Ministries today, Jan Markell spent a second hour with Pastor Billy Crone, who also was the guest a week ago. They discussed how it is very likely that the development and advancement of artificial intelligence (AI) eventually will enable the Antichrist and his government to have sovereignty over the world.
They will be able to control and micromanage virtually everything including the economy, education, agriculture, food availability and distribution, utilities, monetization of a cashless society, entertainment, media, communication, transportation, medical care, police, military and religion. Essentially, it will be an AI invasion into every aspect of human life.
Most likely, advanced AI will be part of the end-time delusion associated with the “lawless one” (Antichrist) and demonic/Satanic visitations.
The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders, and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. (2 Thessalonians 2:9,10)
Even Elon Musk has said that artificial intelligence is our biggest existential threat and that there should be some regulatory oversight at national and international levels just to “make sure that we don’t do something very foolish.” Although Musk likely has little to no biblical insight, he also has said that “with artificial intelligence, we are summoning the demon.”
Through the mark of the beast (Revelation 13:16-18), the Antichrist and the False Prophet will be micromanaging every person and every transaction on the planet. Everything will be monitored all the time, and AI probably will be one of the primary ways that this is done.
One WBAP talk-show host that I like is Rick Roberts; his show airs weekdays from noon until 3:00 p.m. Pacific Time (which is 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Central Time in Texas). I happened to be listening yesterday when he played a recording of something that he’s talked about before, but I had not yet heard it. He refers to it as a “Brief History of Republicans, Democrats, and Racism.”
I have friends and relatives in southern states who have told me about how a lot of people think that the Republicans and Democrats of today do not have the same values and political views that they did in the 1800s. Many feel that the political parties essentially “switched” and adopted each others views that continue today.
However, Rick Roberts disagrees with that premise. In the following audio message, he describes this topic more clearly and logically than I have had it explained to me before.
The audio begins with a GEICO commercial, and then Roberts spends a short amount of time describing the topic that he is going to talk about. The main portion begins at about the 02:00 point, and the entire audio lasts a little under 17 minutes.
A recent report from the U.S. government indicates that wholesale prices, paid by businesses, increased 7.3% from June 2020 to June 2021. It was the greatest 12-month increase on record since 2010.
It also was reported that in June, the core inflation of prices paid by consumers increased 4.5%. It was the third consecutive month that consumer inflation has increased. That was the fastest rate since November 1991.
Speaking to the House Financial Services Committee yesterday, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell noted that inflation has been surging as recovery from the COVID pandemic has been improving. He indicated that inflation probably will remain elevated in upcoming months before moderating.
Powell also indicated that there are no plans by the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates anytime soon. The latter may occur if annual inflation exceeds 2% for an extended period of time.
Back on Mar. 18, it was noted that more than the required number of signatures had been obtained to force a Special Recall election for Governor Gavin Newsom of California. That election is scheduled to take place exactly two months from today.
Interestingly, although Newsom is a Democrat, his party affiliation will not appear on the recall ballot. This is because, several months ago, a new rule was made requiring a governor to include his party preference when responding to a recall election filing. His attorney, Thomas Willis, was supposed to have done this; but he admits that he was unaware of the law requiring this to happen.
Newsom filed a lawsuit to have his party affiliation, Democrat, included on the recall ballot. A hearing about this issue took place, and Sacramento County Superior Court Judge James Arguelles ruled earlier this week to uphold the decision not to allow it. Judge Arguelles said that the law “unambiguously precludes party information from appearing on a recall ballot where the elected officer fails timely to make the designation.”
I like listening to American Family Radio (https://afr.net), especially on weekends when some of the programs from previous days are replayed. One host that I really like is Dr. Frank Turek and his program “I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist.”
He interviewed a very interesting guest, Dr. Chip Bennett, at least twice in the past few weeks. I have read through the Bible 23 times, cover to cover. Each time, I have seen things and “connected dots” that I hadn’t noticed before. Pastor Bennett expanded this process for me, and I’m glad I heard these two programs.
Hermaneutics is the branch of knowledge that deals with interpretation, especially of the Bible or literary texts. A hermaneutic interpretation of Scripture is an enhancement of the historical grammatical method of Scripture interpretation. One does not nullify the other; rather, they supplement each other.
Most Christians have heard that in the New Testament, Jesus is revealed; whereas, in the Old Testament, Jesus is concealed. Indeed, there are many events in the Old Testament that are subtle descriptions and predictions of things that Jesus, and others, did in the New Testament. These two audio podcasts provide some excellent examples of these things. Each one is a little over 48 minutes in length.
Two pilots, Dave Mackay and Michael Masucci, were flying the rocket plane, SpaceShipTwo, which was carrying the V.S.S. Unity ship. Inside the cabin were Branson and three other crew members: Sirisha Bandla, Coplin Bennett and Beth Moses.
The rocket plane took off at 8:40 a.m. local time. The V.S.S. Unity separated from the mother ship at about 9:25 a.m. and took the passengers more than 50 miles above the earth. It was boosted by a hybrid rocket motor, using a mixture of solid and liquid propellant.
At its highest elevation, the crew was able to unstrap from their seats and experience a few minutes of weightless floating. Looking through the round windows around the plane’s fuselage, they also enjoyed an expansive view of the earth below.
Then the crew buckled themselves back into their seats, and the ship began its descent back to earth. It had a perfectly smooth landing at about 9:40 a.m. The entire trip, up and back, took about 59 minutes.
Next year, Virgin Galactic plans to provide sub-orbital spaceflights to the paying public, as well as suborbital space science missions and orbital launches of small satellites. Further in the future, Virgin Galactic hopes to offer orbital human spaceflights as well.
Last night at 8:30 p.m., the temperature in Death Valley was still 120°, and the temperature during the night was not expected to go lower than 108°. Today, the high temperature may miss the 130° level by only a couple of degrees.
At Olive Tree Ministries today, Jan Markell spent the hour with Pastor Billy Crone. They discussed how Ufology almost seems to have become the new world religion. It has been in the news a great deal in the past several months.
An increasing number of people seem to believe in UFOs and aliens than in God. They are enthralled with the notion that aliens may be visiting earth. It’s as if they are looking to aliens to save them. The latest unclassified intelligence report on unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP), released last month, was discussed:
The Bible talks about a great end-time deception and delusion that will affect much of the world. They talked about how the increase in UFO/UAP sightings could be an example of this, where the aliens being seen are not from other solar systems and planets but, rather, are supernatural fallen angels and demonic entities engaging in interdimensional travel.
It is possible that when the Rapture of Christian believers occurs, a common explanation for this will be that people were snatched up and away by space aliens. In fact, though, this will not be the case; they actually will be caught away by God.
A magnitude 6.0 earthquake occurred yesterday afternoon in northern California at 3:40 p.m. It happened near the town of Walker, which is about 40 miles southeast of South Lake Tahoe and about 70 miles northwest of Mammoth Mountain.
It is being referred to as the Antelope Valley quake. Much of northern and central California and western Nevada felt the shaking, including the Bay Area about 230 miles to the west. There were more than 20,000 reports coming into the USGS website by 6:00 p.m. local time. There have been numerous aftershocks, including a magnitude 4.6.
U.S. 395 was closed temporarily due to rock slides. This included boulders falling on the highway and hitting cars, but no one was injured.
The COVID-19 death toll worldwide has exceeded 4 million. The U.S. continues to lead the world, with over 33 million cases and well over 600 thousand deaths.
The highly transmissible SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant of the virus is now the dominant strain in the U.S. and other places. A surge in new cases and a reverse in declining infections appear to be taking place.
In the U.S., almost 158 million people—about 47.6% of the nation’s population—have been fully vaccinated. For those age 18 and older, about 58% are fully vaccinated, and about 67.2% have received at least one dose.
During the exchange of rockets and missiles between Gaza and Israel in May, the Israel Defense Force (IDF) evidently utilized a new technology. Drone swarms, guided by artificial intelligence (AI) sources, were used to carry out attacks on Hamas militants. It is believed to be a world-first use of the technology for this purpose.
A drone swarm requires only a single human operator, with a decision-making commander next to him, to direct the entire swarm. The drones guide themselves to locate the targets as a connected unit. They were deployed to locate and target the Hamas militants, who had fired rockets into Israel.
Drone systems have been acquired by U.S. adversaries including Russia, China and Iran. The U.S. has identified that trend as a rapidly evolving challenge.
Tropical Storm Elsa entered the eastern Gulf of Mexico early this morning. This was after it battered western Cuba yesterday.
After the center of the storm passes about 55 miles west of the Florida Keys, Elsa will be moving north-by-northwest at about 12 mph. It will move near or over portions of the west coast of Florida later today.
It now has winds of about 60 mph but is expected to strengthen. Tropical-storm-force winds are extending up to 70 miles from the center.
There are expected to be storm surges, heavy rain, strong winds and tornadoes in parts of Florida. It may become a Category 1 hurricane at some point. A hurricane watch is in effect for Egmont Key to the Steinhatchee River, Florida.
Elsa is expected to strengthen as it gradually move along Florida’s west coast. It may make landfall on the state’s northern coast, possibly as a hurricane.
Just before the Independence Day holiday weekend, another ransomware attack took place. It is being called a “colossal and devastating supply chain attack.”
Yesterday, it was suspected that the REvil ransomware gang in Russia targeted software firm Kaseya, a Miami-based supplier. They successfully encrypted the files of at least 200 businesses in several nations. It is not yet known how the attackers compromised the tool, nor just how widespread is the attack.
The attackers changed a Kaseya tool called VSA, used by firms that manage technology at smaller businesses. Simultaneously, they encrypted the files of those providers’ customers.
Enterprises running Kaseya VSA remote monitoring and management tools are advised to shut down servers running the service immediately. Attackers behind the ransomware attack are disabling administrative access to VSA once they have access to the victim network, complicating efforts to contain and remove the ransomware.
For some time, Palestinians have claimed that the outpost of Evyatar in the West Bank is theirs. However, an increase of Israeli settlers has taken place there, especially recently.
The settlers have insisted that the land on which Evyatar sits does not belong to Palestinians. Yet, Palestinians from the villages of Beita and Yatma claim that it does belong to them.
The Evyatar deal with the Israeli government stipulates that outpost residents had until today to leave the settlement. This afternoon, the last of the Israeli residents of Evyatar outpost voluntarily left the community.
The structures placed there will remain, and an army base will be set up at the site. The legal status of the area will be evaluated within six months. If it is determined that the land is not private Palestinian property, it will be reclassified as state land, and presumably most or all of the evacuated settlers will return.
I haven’t gotten out too much for well over a year to eat Thai food, which I like a lot. Lately, I’ve been doing it a bit more frequently.
Probably my favorite Thai restaurant in Orange County is Jumpa on Brookhurst St. in Garden Grove Their food is very tasty, they make it as hot and spicy (“ped mak mak”) as I like it, and their service is excellent.
Their Monday through Friday lunch specials are only $7.95, which is less than most Thai restaurants, and their portions are good. I like all of their food, but my favorite menu item is the Red Curry chicken. When I leave there, I’m so happy and have so much energy that I feel like I can go jump over the moon.