Rabbi’s Reflections – Sunday, February 5, 2023
Shavuah Tov *|FNAME|*,
Biblical Perspective of Current News (for January 2023)
by Dr. Raymond Finney
INTRODUCTION: If anyone reads the RRs I write, he/she may think I spend too much time on end-time events. God’s Word devotes much space warning about the end and urging Believers to prepare for that end. For that reason, I frequently write about end times.
Today’s RR may seem to discuss only gloom and doom topics. Belief in God should instill joy. Right? Well, for the Believer the end of the Age of Grace ushers in unparalleled joy. Today’s RR contains mostly commentaries that discuss the beginning of the end of the Age. You need to know the signs of the time. Others– your family and neighbors– need to know these signs, as well.
A merciful, loving God inspired Bible authors to write these warnings, not to frighten but to warn and guide preparation. Knowledge of the future is your best way to survive any future trials (Hosea 4:6): [Adonai said] “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Since you rejected knowledge, I will also reject you from being My kohen. Since you forgot the Torah of your God, just so I will forget your children.”
News organizations want to be the first to break (report) a story. By studying God’s Word, you can know the future before most others. Prophets heard about the future before the rest of us (Amos 3:7): [Adonai said] “For the Lord Adonai, will do nothing, unless He has revealed His counsel to His servants the prophets.” Prophetic passages in the Bible lay down a roadmap for our future.
If you are familiar with Bible prophecy, you can read/ hear/ watch current news and say to yourself, “Oh, that’s the way God plans to fulfill prophecy.” I listen to news to confirm Bible teachings, and have no real fear. We should, perhaps, recall the lyrics of Alison Krauss’ song, “I Know Who Holds Tomorrow:”
“I don’t know about tomorrow || I just live for day to day || I don’t borrow from the sunshine || For its skies may turn to gray.
“I don’t worry o’er the future || For I know what Jesus said || And today I’ll walk beside Him || For He knows what lies ahead.
“Many things about tomorrow || I don’t seem to understand || But I know who holds tomorrow || And I know who holds my hand.
“Ev’ry step is getting brighter || As the golden stairs I climb || Ev’ry burden’s getting lighter || Ev’ry cloud is silver lined.
“There the sun is always shining || There no tear will dim the eye “|| At the ending of the rainbow || Where the mountains touch the sky.
“Many things about tomorrow || I don’t seem to understand || But I know who holds tomorrow || And I know who holds my hand.”
Some have offered a play on words by saying that Bible history is “His story (God’s story), written prophetically in advance.”
If the Bible is true, two certainties are prophesied for the future– horrendous hardships (including severe persecution and martyrdom for those called by Gods name– Jews and Believers/ Christians) followed by an eternity of reward and beautiful life. I believe the world is about to enter the horrible time of the Tribulation, but redemption and reward will follow.
Charles Dickens opened his classic A Tale of Two Cities with this assessment of eighteenth century Europe (especially France): “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way– in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.”
Dickens could pen the same assessment for the world in 2023. The “worst of times” will soon be here, but the “best of times” will follow. As noted in previous RRs, two features of prophetic fulfillment exist today (for the first time in the history of the world) – prophetic convergence and acceleration:
● Convergence: Prior to 1948 (the year Adonai ended the Diaspora and returned Jacob’s sons and daughters home to the Covenant Land), end-time prophecies seemingly were disconnected, random, and confusing. Since this date, prophetic passages are focused like a laser beam on the Day of the Lord– a time when Yeshua will return with the Heavenly Host to put an end to sin.
● Acceleration: Prior to 1948, many years– even centuries– separated events which seemed to fulfill end-time prophecies. Now, multiple prophecies are fulfilled or prepared for fulfillment on a daily basis. Daniel was told that the time of the end would be one of great increase in knowledge (Daniel 12:4): “But you, Daniel, close up the words and seal the book until the time of the end. Many will run back and forth and knowledge will increase.”
We can confidently and expectantly pray with the Apostle John (Revelation 22:20b): … Come, Lord Yeshua!
►TITLE (DATE): Sexual immorality is not sinful, Archbishop of York says
(January 31, 2023)
● SOURCE (URL): Christianity News Daily ( Sexual immorality is not sinful, Archbishop of York says – Christianity News Daily )
● SUMMARY: The Church of England’s (CofE) Archbishop of York responded to pressure to answer whether homosexuality and same-sex marriage are sinful by saying the CofE’s new stance on the issue is that it’s OK, as long as couples are in “committed, stable, faithful relationships,” adding that same-sex married couples will be “welcomed fully into the life of the Church, on their terms.” The CofE also announced its support for a proposal allowing same-sex couples to receive “God’s blessings.” The bishops said, “We want to apologize for the ways in which the Church of England has treated LGBTQI+ people– both those who worship in our churches and those who do not.”
● SIGNIFICANCE: Rather than depend upon the Archbishop’s “woke” views, God’s views should be consulted (example: 1 Corinthians 6:9-10): Or don’t you know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Don’t be deceived! The sexually immoral, idolaters, adulterers, those who practice homosexuality, thieves, the greedy, drunkards, slanderers, swindlers– none of these will inherit the kingdom of God. As the end of the Age of Grace nears, apostate Believers will diminish the standards of Biblical rights and wrongs. The Body of the Messiah will morph into the lukewarm congregation patterned after the one at Laodicea (Revelation 3:14-22).
►TITLE (DATE): Persecution and Victimhood (January 29, 2023)
● SOURCE (URL): The Hal Lindsey Report ( The Hal Lindsey Report | Hal Lindsey )
● SUMMARY: Just before Christmas, a woman in Birmingham, England was arrested near an abortion clinic. She did not block access to the clinic, and it wouldn’t have mattered if she did because it was not even open for business at the time. She did not disturb the peace in any way. In fact, when police asked if she was protesting, she answered, “No.” Then they asked if she was praying. She answered, “I might be silently praying.” And that was enough. Off she went with the officers– under arrest for “maybe” saying a silent prayer.
● SIGNIFICANCE: Although seemingly inconceivable that a person could be arrested for praying silently in ”Christian” England, such apparently is the case. Draconian measures will be undertaken during the Tribulation to stop all religious activities (even prayer), unless such religious devotion is directed toward the Unholy Trinity. Persecution of Believers has already started.
►TITLE (DATE): Fentanyl’s deathly grip on America: Cheap synthetic opioid flooding US street drug supply is dragging down life expectancy, turning our cities into Zombielands and killing 1,500 people a WEEK (January 27, 2023)
● SOURCE (URL): Daily Mail ( Fentanyl’s deathly grip on America: 1,500 deaths a week, cities turned into wastelands | Daily Mail Online )
● SUMMARY: The US is in the midst of a catastrophic fentanyl epidemic that is causing an eye-watering number of deaths and tearing the fabric of American society apart. The ultra-strong opioid being cut with virtually every street drug in the country killed a record 75,000 Americans in 2021, the equivalent of 1,500 lives lost every week. Fentanyl– which is 100 times more potent than morphine– started off as a cheap and potent alternative to heroin and was used by only the most hardcore drug addicts in the US, who mainly injected it or smoked it through a pipe. But its cheap manufacturing costs and potency have made it the go-to cutting agent for cartels and drug dealers in the US looking to stretch their supply. It’s now found n everything from cocaine to molly [molly = form of MDMA or Ecstasy] and street benzodiazepines like Xanax.
● SIGNIFICANCE: Drug usage in America and other countries is outrageous. The United States’ supply of fentanyl comes from China and Mexico. Until the southern border with Mexico is controlled, we can expect widespread use and drug-overdose deaths from fentanyl. Such unrepentant, flagrant drug use is a fulfillment of end-time prophecy (Revelation 9:21): And they [people living during the Tribulation] did not repent and turn away from their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their stealing. “Sorceries” is an awkward translation of φαρμακεία (transliterated, pharmakeia || pronounced, far-mak-I-ah). The pharm- root is easily understood by English-speaking peoples (pharm- = drugs). Uncontrolled use of certain illicit drugs causes behavior which might seem to be demonic sorcery.
►TITLE (DATE): Worldview With Amir Tsarfati: The Situation Is Beginning To Look Dire (January 26, 2023)
● SOURCE (URL): Harbingers Daily ( Worldview With Amir Tsarfati: The Situation Is Beginning To Look Dire | Harbingers Daily )
● SUMMARY: Recent events bolster the belief hat end-time Bible prophecy is true and we are living in the end times.
● SIGNIFICANCE: Author Tsarfati takes a number of recent events and demonstrates how they coincide with Bible prophecy.
►TITLE (DATE): Top Scientist on COVID Vaccines: “Withdraw Them Immediately” (January 18, 2023)
● SOURCE (URL): Summit News ( Top Scientist on COVID Vaccines: “Withdraw Them Immediately” – Summit News )
● SUMMARY: In the United Kingdom (U.K.), three COVID-19 vaccines– manufactured by AstraZeneca, Pfizer, and Moderna– have been used in a nationwide inoculation program aimed at preventing harm from the SARS-CoV-2 virus. All three vaccines rely on novel technology that has never before been used in humans. At the time of their introduction, they lacked any long-term safety data. There can be no question that the mRNA vaccines should be withdrawn with immediate effect. The MHRA has provided no protection to the U.K. public from the adverse effects of the novel COVID-19 vaccine.
● SIGNIFICANCE: The author of this article– Dr. Richard Ennos, a retired Professor of Evolutionary Biology at Edinburgh University– provides important information regarding the safety and efficacy of the new COVID-19 vaccines. How does this relate to end times? The Tribulation will be filled with many deathly dangers. Early in the Tribulation will occur the Fourth Seal Judgment (Revelation 6:7-8): When the Lamb [Yeshua] opened the fourth seal, I [John] heard the fourth living creature saying, “Come!” Behold, I saw a horse, pale greenish gray. The name of the one riding on it was Death, and Sheol was following with him. Authority was given to them over a fourth of the earth, to kill by sword and by famine and by plague and by the wild beasts of the earth. Expect highly deadly pandemics– even more deadly than the COVID-19 pandemic– in the future (when the Tribulation begins).
►TITLE (DATE): Over 1,000 Private Jets Expected to Descend on Davos as WEF Leaders Preach Climate Change (January 16, 2023)
● SOURCE (URL): RedState ( Over 1,000 Private Jets Expected to Descend on Davos as WEF Leaders Preach Climate Change – RedState )
● SUMMARY: “World leaders” met at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland to tell the rest of us how we should live. “Saving the planet” by drastic reduction in energy consumption (in the West, not China and India, of course) is a major, passionate concern. But how do all these leaders get there? Do they fly commercial, then, take a train, the likely option if you or I were to go? Do they rent a car, or ride alongside the unwashed masses on a bus? Nope. Many of them drive in surrounded by huge convoys of gas-guzzling vehicles, while another bunch flies in on private jets (exceeding 1,000 private jets), some of them on incredibly short flights. We might not begrudge these people for these fuel-guzzling flights, if their actions weren’t completely at odds with what they preach. YOU must get rid of our gas stoves, YOU must get an electric vehicle (despite the fact EVs are more expensive and their non-recyclable batteries are likely made with Congolese slave labor-mined cobalt), YOU must eat less meat (or crickets)… but US, the rich and elite? That’s a different story. We– the ruling class– do whatever we want and have always done.
● SIGNIFICANCE: Hypocrisy is not just an end-time phenomenon. There has always been a life-style disparity between those who rule and those being ruled. This hypocrisy of these ultra-rich members of the ruling class and us ordinary citizens reminds me of the prophesied conditions during the Tribulation’s Third Seal Judgment (Revelation 6:5-6). During this time, a laborer (someone earning a “denarius” for a day’s labor, which was the standard wage for a laborer in the first century) will not be able to afford enough food (peasant food of wheat and barley) to sustain himself, much less his family, but the “oil and wine” (luxury food of the rich) will “not be harmed.” This Biblical illustration may be summed up by Percy Bysshe Shelley’s aphorism: “The rich get richer and the poor get poorer.” The world is being set up to fulfill Yeshua’s prophecy. Global population is exploding while food and other supplies are diminishing. The Apostle John wrote Revelation toward the end of the first century, and Thomas Robert Malthus wrote similar conclusions in his An Essay on the Principle of Population (1798). From Malthus came the concept of Malthusianism– population growth is exponential while growth of food and other essential resources is linear. Reduction in living standards causes population die-off and other catastrophes (a Malthusian catastrophe).
►TITLE (DATE): Memo of Love to Israel (January 15, 2023)
● SOURCE (URL): Terry James Prophecy Line ( Memo of Love to Israel « Terry James Prophecy Line )
● SUMMARY: Many who view Bible prophecy from the pre-Tribulation view believe the United States has a special relationship with the nation Israel. I [Terry James] am certainly of that camp, as I’ve clearly expressed throughout the years. My own meaning is that America was used by God in the process of bringing Israel back as a nation after millennia of being dispersed throughout the world.
● SIGNIFICANCE: Author Terry James reviews some of the ways the United States intervened in world events to aid the return of Jews home from the Diaspora. Interestingly, there was some sentiment among the Founding Fathers to make the newly formed United States into a New Israel. Of course, God always intended that Israel would be re-established in ancient Canaan, when He brought the Jews home to the Covenant Land of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (see especially Ezekiel, chapters 36 and 37).
►TITLE (DATE): 12 Questions for Those Who Dismiss the Validity of Future Bible Prophecy (January 12, 2023)
● SOURCE (URL): jonathanbrentner.com ( 12 Questions for Those Who Dismiss the Validity of Future Bible Prophecy — Jonathan Brentner )
● SUMMARY: Was the reestablishment of Israel as a nation in 1948 a fluke of history or the result of God’s miraculous working on behalf of His people? Although I [Jonathan Brentner] and many others see God’s supernatural hand in it, most church leaders today claim Israel’s current existence has nothing to do with Bible prophecy. They teach that God rejected the people of Israel after their actions led to Jesus’ crucifixion. As a result, He transferred His promises of a glorious future kingdom from Israel to the church, albeit spiritually. We refer to this belief as “replacement theology” since its proponents say that the church has replaced Israel in God’s prophetic scheme. Does this really matter? Yes,….
● SIGNIFICANCE: Author Brenner takes twelve momentous changes in the history of Israel and Christendom, laying the groundwork to show that these things are the handiwork of Adonai.
CONCLUSION: I am again faced with far too many reports and too little space to discuss them. Praise God! He is marching forward rapidly and unfalteringly with His plan from ancient times to create a future Heaven as a perfect reward for His children. Some recipients of Rabbi Weiner’s RR newsletters will likely be alive when God’s trumpet sounds, the archangel commands, “Come up here!” and Yeshua parts the clouds in the eastern sky. See you in Paradise!
Oh, let me add one more reason to study Bible prophecy and to long for Yeshua’s return. By so doing, you may earn the Crown of Righteousness (2 Timothy 4:8): In the future there is reserved for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day– and not to me only, but also to everyone who has longed for His appearing.
I believe I will discuss the Bema Judgment and crowns next Sunday. In 1975, Karl Malden was a spokesman for the American Express credit card. His successful slogan for the card was, “Don’t leave home without it.” As a Believer, you should not leave your Earth home without a trove of rewards awaiting you in Paradise. Until next Sunday, Shalom and Maranatha.
Daily Bread, reading plan by Lars Enarson (https://www.thewatchman.org/)
Sun 5-Feb-2023 14th of Sh’vat, 5783
Ex 18:1-12 1 Ki 22 Ps 119:145-176 Jn 5 (2 Th 1-2)