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Printed News Letter

September 2008 Issue

A War prior to the peace treaty?
Sep 1st, 2008
Art Sadlier

We understand that the war of Ezekiel 38 will be after the peace treaty is signed. Do Psalm 83 and Ezekiel 36 speak of a war that will take place prior to the peace treaty?

Since 1948, when Israel became a nation again, she has known nothing but wars and rumors of wars, in three major wars the prophecy of Zechariah 12:6 has been fulfilled. Today an alliance has formed against Israel, an alliance that is distinct from the alliance of Ezekiel 38. This group is made up of Syria, Hezbollah, Hamas, Lebanon and the Palestinian Authority. They have claimed the Temple Mount, the city of Jerusalem and have stated that there is no place for Jews in Palestine. Their avowed intention is to destroy Israel.

This group is now armed to the teeth with rockets and missiles and an array of military hardware that can destroy Israel. Syria is said to have 1,000 long range missiles that can reach anywhere in Israel as well as shorter range rockets. Syria’s arsenal is also believed to include chemical and biological warheads. Hezbollah is believed to have 40,000 missiles and rockets.

Isaiah prophesied the destruction of Damascus in the last days, is this event about to happen?

This last year it was discovered that Syria had an accident while loading nerve gas into a missile warhead, some 28 people died in that accident. A few months ago the story broke that Israel had attacked and destroyed, in Syria, a nuclear bomb or materials for a nuclear bomb that Syria had obtained from North Korea.

Today there is a momentum building in this group to attack Israel with an onslaught of missiles that have the potential to totally devastate Israel. Israel has a policy called the “Samson Option”. It is named after Samson who sacrificed himself to destroy his enemies. In the event of Israel’s imminent destruction, it would launch its nuclear weapons to destroy its enemies.

It is now obvious that Syria is totally committed to destroying Israel. The capital of Syria is Damascus; the bible has some ominous words for Damascus. Isaiah says, “The burden of Damascus. Behold, Damascus is taken away from being a city, and it shall be a ruinous heap” Isaiah 17:1. Damascus is the oldest city on earth, though it has been conquered many times, it has never been destroyed, but has remained in tact until this day. The timing of the destruction of Damascus is revealed in verse 4, at a time when Israel is greatly threatened and is reduced to a state of peril and fear.

Another indication of the timing of this attack is implied in Ezekiel 38&39. The fact is that although Syria is now closely allied with Russia and Iran, yet she is not mentioned as being a part of that war, implying that the destruction of Damascus may be imminent.

It is obvious that Syria with the help of Iran, Russia and North Korea, is preparing an arsenal of biological and possibly nuclear weapons to destroy Israel. I believe that the moment that Israeli Intelligence is alerted to such an imminent attack they will exercise the “Samson Option”. The following news item appeared some weeks ago, “Israel to Syria: Use chemical weapons & we will wipe you off the map” (WND). Israel has low yield nuclear weapons that give a minimum of radio active fallout. These weapons could be used with pinpoint accuracy. To me, it seems the whole scenario is falling into place. It is amazing how after 2,800 years Isaiah’s prophecy seems about to be fulfilled.

A full scale nuclear war by Iran does not fit into the end time Biblical scenario; nevertheless the whole Mid-east crisis is rushing toward some kind of cataclysmic event which would finally set up the world for a peace treaty, even though it will be a false peace, by a false Messiah.

Isaiah 17:14 may well be a description of Damascus’ fate. “And behold at eventide trouble, and before the morning, he is not. This is the portion of them that spoil us and the lot of them that rob us” (seek to take the Golan Heights).

I would tend to think that this event could happen prior to the rapture or at the time of the rapture. We are living in awesome days! The signs are multiplying, the Trumpet is Soon to Sound, are you ready or will you be ashamed at His coming?

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Church Growth Movement
Sep 1st, 2008
various sources

A strange distortion of truth has spread like a grass fire on a windy day, through churches around the world. It calls God’s people not just to understand our changing times from the world’s perspective, but to actually blow with the wind and help fuel the transformation. This Church Growth Movement (CGM) uses familiar old words to persuade the people, but it conforms God’s Word as well as human thinking to politically correct views of unity, community, service and change.

Forget solid Bible teaching and the “offense of the cross.” To win the masses “for Christ”, the church must be re-cloaked in a more permissive and appealing image. It must be marketed to the world as a “safe place”, purged of the moral standards which stirred conviction of sin and a longing to separate from the world’s immorality. So they re-imagined a feel-good church stripped of offense - one the world could love and claim as its own.

Their march to a “better world” is well under way. In this new church, group thinking, compromise, conflict resolution, the dialectic process and facilitated consensus are in. Uncompromising conviction and resistance to group consensus are out. For God’s way seems far too intolerant to fit the managed systems of the new millennium.

--Excerpt from Reinventing the Church

The Philadelphia Inquirer ran a story on Rick Warren which tells us a great deal about the man who is changing the face of American evangelicalism. Here’s an excerpt:

Warren predicts that fundamentalism, of all varieties, will be one of the big enemies of the 21st century. Muslim fundamentalism, Christian fundamentalism, Jewish fundamentalism, secular fundamentalism - they’re all motivated by fear. Fear of each other.”

This remark is no surprise to Pastor Bob DeWaay of Twin City Fellowship in Minneapolis. DeWaay has published a book which shines the spotlight on Rick Warren’s brand of Christianity and its sobering implications for the church. The title of DeWaay’s book “Redefining Christianity: Understanding the Purpose Driven Movement” describes what a growing number of Christians are seeing. Rick Warren has subtly and critically changed the message of the Gospel.

In the forward to the book, Gary Gilley, author of This Little Church Went to Market and pastor of Southern View Chapel in Springfield, Illinois, writes,

Bob (DeWaay) painstakingly shows that Rick Warren has done for the church what McDonald’s has done for the restaurant industry. Unfortunately, the church is not in the hamburger flipping business. Applying franchising principles to Christ’s church may result in outward success, but true success cannot be measured by simply reading the bottom line of ‘nickels and noses’, buildings and programs.”

In his steady, scholarly way, Bob DeWaay demonstrates that the Gospel according to Rick Warren is not a biblical call to sinners to throw down their rebel arms at the cross and embrace the salvation offered by the Lord Jesus Christ. Nowhere in the Purpose Driven Life are readers told that sinners (what an archaic term now) are under the wrath and curse of God unless they believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and His atoning sacrifice on the cross. Rick Warren instead retools the Gospel message to appeal to the unregenerate. He does not believe that God’s purposes are declared in His revealed Word, but rather teaches that unsaved should go on a journey of self-discovery in order to locate God’s purposes for their lives.

To Rick Warren, church growth is not the result of the Holy Spirit converting sinners as seen in the book of Acts but is the result of the latest marketing techniques that will make church attractive to those who don’t know Jesus Christ. Thousands of churches are now Purpose Driven franchises with success hungry pastors taking their cues and even their sermons from Rick Warren. Rick Warren calls this “Church-in-a box” and he offers it on his numerous websites. But the true Gospel of Christ, the narrow way that Christ spoke of in the Bible, has been altered to suit the world. Numerical success may be achieved, but the Gospel must be obscured to do it Warren’s way.

Redefining Christianity has excellent chapters in which the author deals with Rick Warren’s redefining of terms like “vision” and “commitment” and his misuse of countless Bible versions and paraphrases to try to justify his teaching. The most important chapter in the book deals with the Gospel according to Rick Warren. The author points out that when original sin and the blood atonement are removed from the message, there is no “good news”. The world is then being given a gospel that is false. It really is that serious.

Rick Warren’s distaste for Christian fundamentalism, as expressed in the Philadelphia Inquirer, is a result of his distaste for the fundamentals of God’s Word. Those who insist on hearkening back to the Word of God stand in direct opposition to Warren’s “Purpose-Driven” marketing tsunami. Rick’s much vaunted PEACE plan, his unprecedented popularity with the secular media and his continuing ascendancy in American evangelicalism is dependant upon those pastors and leaders who are willing to set aside the clear dictates of God’s Word in order to ride the coattails of Rick Warren and his temporal success. Fundamentalists get in the way.

In the midst of the marketing hype and popular clamor for Rick Warren’s man-centered Gospel, may the clear voice of our Savior Jesus Christ cut through the din.

Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction and many there be which go in thereat: because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, and few there be that find it.” Matthew 7: 13-14 -- excerpt from “The Gospel According to Rick Warren” by B. Kjos

A False Gospel

Thousands of small groups using Saddleback’s study guide and Teaching Video for the 40 days of Purpose are led in a prayer. They hear Pastor Warren speak these words:

“Do you have a relationship with Jesus Christ? If you aren’t sure of this, I’d like the privilege of leading you in a prayer to settle the issue. Let’s bow our heads. I’m going to pray a prayer and you can follow it silently in your mind:

Dear god, I want to know Your purpose for my life. I don’t want to waste the rest of my life on the wrong things. Today I want to take the first step in preparing for eternity by getting to know You. Jesus Christ, I don’t understand it all, but as much as I know how, I want to open my life to You. I ask you to come into my life and make yourself real to me. Use this series to help me know what you made me for. Thank You. Amen.

If you just prayed that prayer for the very first time, I congratulate you. You’ve just become a part of the family of God.”

Is this a response to the gospel? Where is repentance, acknowledgement of need, confession of personal sin? Where is the cross? The Bible tells us that saving “faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.” Romans 10:17-18. But none of the Scriptures that show the gospel are mentioned in this first lesson. Biblically illiterate friends and neighbors who join the group would pray this prayer without any real knowledge of the cross, of the Savior, or of God’s view of sin. In fact, the meaning of salvation isn’t included in the first lesson. And if it had been there, the context of the lesson would suggest that we are merely saved from a purposeless life --- not from bondage to sin.

-- Excerpt from Spirit Led or Purpose Driven

In a polluted stream there may be some good water, but to drink of that stream you may greatly harm yourself. The Purpose Driven stream is a polluted stream; you drink of it at great spiritual peril.


The PDC Program for Change

Focusing on the “customer’s perspective” brings success. People feel satisfied. They come and they buy. When this process is applied to churches, it works! With polls and surveys, a church can easily uncover the “felt needs” of the unbelievers in the local community - then target their services to their intended customers. Pastor Warren learned that lesson early from Robert Schuler - the “possibility thinker” who called Mikhail Gorbachev a Christian despite the protests of this unrepentant Communist. The people-pleasing methods that worked so well at the Crystal Cathedral would prove just as effective at Saddleback.

You might still wonder why pastors would focus on the felt needs of unbelievers rather than the true needs of God’s family. Doesn’t this strategy turn God’s principles upside down?

Yes, but it also attracts the spiritual diversity needed for the dialectic process - the heart of today’s transformation in churches as well as in business, education, government and other organizations. Dr. Robert Klenck summarizes it in his report on

“The 21st Century Church”

“… in this movement, it is imperative that unbelievers are brought into the church; otherwise, the process of continual change cannot begin. There must be an antithesis (unbelievers) present to oppose the thesis (believers), in order to move towards consensus (compromise), and move the believers away from their moral absolutism (resistance to change). If all members of the church stand firm on the Word of God, and its final authority in all doctrine and tradition, then the church cannot and will not change. This is common faith.”

-- Excerpt from Spirit Led or Purpose Driven

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The coming invasion of Israel
Sep 1st, 2008
Art Sadlier

Satan now has a kingdom in this world as we see in 2 Corinthians 4:4 and John 14:30. This kingdom of Satan is limited, in that it is subject to the permissive will of God. According to Isaiah 14:13-14 Satan desires to throw off these restraints and rule in place of God. Satan knows that Christ has promised to take the kingdom from him and rule this world in righteousness and peace. (Luke 1:32-33; Rev. 11:15). Satan knows three things that will be involved in God's plan:

  1. A redeemed Israel dwelling in the promised land.
  2. Christ coming to rule over Israel and the world from David’s throne in Jerusalem.
  3. A resulting termination of the prospect of Satan’s Kingdom.

Satan's goal therefore is:

  1. To drive Israel off the promised land
  2. To annihilate Israel.

Satan rationalizes that if he can do that, Christ cannot come and establish His kingdom and he will have defeated God. All down through history Satan has sought to annihilate Israel. Today that effort is what dominates the current world scene. Satan will make one final great attempt to destroy Israel, that attempt is recorded in Ezekiel 38-39. This attempt comes through an ALLIANCE of NATIONS and a GREAT ATTACK.

1..Who launches this attack? Russia is the one who launches and leads this attack, Ezekiel 38:2-3, without entering into a study, these verses refer to Russia. Russia will be the leader of a large alliance of mid-east nations. We learn the identity of those nations in verse 5-6. This alliance is made up of Persia (Iran), and a group of Arab nations that surround Israel.

Today Russia is working to form this very alliance with Iran, Syria, Turkey, Libya, Sudan and other Muslim nations in the vicinity of Israel. Since the invasion of Georgia, the mid-east nations that oppose Israel have come alive with new enthusiasm to destroy Israel. These nations now have a new champion against the West and Israel as the rift between Russia and the West grows.

It is possible that Psalm 83 refers to the present attacks on Israel. But Ezekiel 38-39 tells us about a massive all out attempt to utterly destroy Israel.

2...When will this attack take place?

In Ezekiel 38:8 we have the first clue, “in the latter years”, that is the present time. “The land that is brought back from the sword, and is gathered out of many people”, this is the present time. “And is brought forth out of the nations,” this is Israel today. For 2,000 years Israel has been scattered among the nations, Israel has been a wasteland; the land has been under the sword of many conquerors. But now they have been regathered, that is true of no other time in history.

Further Evidence of the timing, “and they shall dwell safely all of them”.

  1. This is not the present time, it’s not today. Today missiles are flying, terror attacks are rampant and war is constantly on the horizon.
  2. This is not the second half of the tribulation period. The tribulation period will be a time of unprecedented war, terror and destruction, there will be no peace in those days.
  3. The only time Israel will experience peace is a brief period, very early tribulation period. Verse 11, describes this time of peace. This is the time immediately following the peace treaty of antichrist. Paul tells us that this peace will be for but a short period of time (1 Thessalonians 5:2-3). Therefore this attack on Israel will be very early in the tribulation period. (See also Ezekiel 39:9 N.B.- Remember that in the chronology of the kings of Israel any portion of a year that a king reigned was reckoned to be a year.)

The burning of the weapons will take 7 years and that will not overlap the Millennial kingdom, therefore this war must take place early in the tribulation.

The world is clamoring today for Israel to tear down the wall of protection they have built, (verse 11). No doubt after the peace treaty is signed they will take it down. The world has been seeking a peace treaty for 25 years, they haven’t found it, they won’t, and they can’t. The peace treaty will not be confirmed until antichrist comes on the scene to sign it. We conclude that the war of Ezekiel 38-39 will not take place until the church is raptured and the peace treaty is signed, but it will be very early in the tribulation. If this alliance is rapidly forming and the preparations for this war are well underway, then the trumpet is soon to sound!

3...The Invasion in Ezekiel 38:9, the peace treaty has been signed; Israel and the nations have disarmed; antichrist has pledged Israel’s security. The attack is massive and it is a surprise attack. Russia, with her former republic states, along with an unbelievable number of people from Muslim nations, descending on Israel to destroy Her. Iran has a million man army and a ten million man militia. Multiplied millions will come, verse 15. The west will be somehow neutralized, America will be out of the equation, perhaps the judgment of God will have fallen on America, in whatever form He chooses. Notice the response of the West in Ezekiel 38:13, their passive response is not unlike the response to the recent invasion of Georgia.

4...The Weapons described in Ezekiel 38:4 don’t sound like modern weapons, what is this all about? Remember, world-wide disarmament has taken place and this attack is dependant on massive numbers of men with makeshift weapons.

5...The Final Outcome today the stage is being set for that battle, described in verses 18 & 22. The Muslim world is preparing for a war of annihilation against Israel. Ahmahdinejad is calling for an alliance of Muslim nations to wage a war of annihilation against Israel. Listen to the words of the President of Iran: “The skirmishes in the occupied land are a part of a war of destiny. The outcome of hundreds of years of war will be defined on Palestinian land. As the Imam said, Israel must be wiped off the map”, and they are preparing to do it! He also said, “Israel is a tyrannical regime that will one day be destroyed”. He further stated, “Israel is a rotten, dried tree that will one day be annihilated in one storm.” Amazing that after 2,600 years Ezekiel’s very words are echoed by the President of Iran. Listen to Ezekiel 38:9, “Thou shalt ascend and come like a storm”, do you think the Spirit of God is trying to get our attention? Do you understand what is happening in our world? Let the words of Ahmadinejad explain it for you. “Anybody who recognizes Israel will burn in the fire of the Islamic nation’s fury.” That is an explanation of the terror the world is now facing. The Lord will intervene and destroy these nations, verses 18-22. Ezekiel 39:2 tells that 5 out of every 6 men in this army will die. As the battle ends, Russia is totally neutralized and Islam is eliminated as force in world affairs; apparently America has already been eliminated. At that point antichrist will be the only one left standing and the oil of the mid-east will be his. He can then proceed to expand his kingdom

On November 20, 2007, Hamas stated in a letter to the UN, “Palestine is Arab Islamic land, from the river to the sea, including Jerusalem; there is no room for the Jews”. As we see the frantic preparations being made to obliterate Israel and the coming together of this alliance, we know that the Trumpet is soon to sound! Are you ready?

And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.” Luke 21:28

The shadows of these events are being cast on the walls of our news media, the day is far spent, and the time is at hand.

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The emergent Church promotes lifestyle rather than faith
Sep 1st, 2008
Art Sadlier

A Christian broadcaster claims that Emerging church leader Brian McLaren is fulfilling the biblical prophecy that in the latter days men will not put up with sound doctrine, according to 2 Tim. 4:3.

Brian McLaren recently addressed 650 Anglican bishops attending the Lambeth Conference, a meeting he says was characterized by “a loving atmosphere” and “a deep spirituality centred in bible study, worship, and prayer.” McLaren tells that he envisions a new era for Christianity, which “is more about the Christian way of life than it is about a rigid and polemicized systems of belief.”

Tom Mahon, president of The Berean Call ministry, says McLaren is obviously ashamed of the biblical gospel and is bent upon making it accommodate his own ideas about Christianity and “the Christian way of life”.

“Once you throw off biblical doctrine, what do you have to guide you? This is to me a reflection of what Satan did to Eve in the Garden, this is Gen. 3:1, “Yea hath God said?” In other words, if you undermine what God had said, then what have got?” he questions. : Well, you’ve got Proverbs 14:12, “There is a way that seems right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death,’

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The Third Temple
Sep 1st, 2008
Art Sadlier

Today in the midst of Arab opposition and determination to destroy Israel, the Jewish interest in building the temple continues to grow. One of the recent developments that are feeding this desire is the reestablishment of the Sanhedrin. This body of 71 men met for the first time, in the place where the Sanhedrin last met 1600 years ago, Tiberius, in October of 2004. They now meet weekly in Jerusalem in order to issue rulings on matters related to Israeli Judaism. Their goal is to eventually become the governing body for modern Israel.

Arnold Fruchtenbaum, a Hebrew Christian scholar has noted the following:

The significance of Israel's reinstituting the Sanhedrin may be another event that leaves in place the possibility of how the Lord will work out His will with His people. Almost sixty years after a 1900 year absence, the nation of Israel came into existence. Jewish people from the four corners of the world have made aliyah to live in the Land. The Temple Institute in Jerusalem has reconstructed the instruments for Jewish Temple worship; Jewish men determined to be descendants of Aaron, known as the Kohanim, are being trained in ritual practices to serve as Temple priests; and now we have the establishment of an authoritative body to speak to the nation of Israel on matters of Jewish religion.

It is important to note that as a result of the June 2005 meeting of the Sanhedrin, they have issued a call for specific plans to rebuild the Temple. The Israeli rabbinical council involved with re-establishing the Sanhedrin, is calling upon all groups involved in Temple Mount research to prepare detailed architectural plans for the reconstruction of the Jewish Holy Temple. This demonstrates that increasingly the new Sanhedrin believes that it is taking steps to prepare the modern state of Israel for a new Temple and the coming of Messiah. These stage-setting steps are things that are in concert with the end time events that will take place during a future era known as the tribulation.

In order to specifically carry out the Sanhedrin's call to prepare architectural plans for rebuilding the Temple, the group will establish a forum of architects and engineers to begin plans for rebuilding the Temple - a move fraught with religious and political volatility. The Sanhedrin is also calling on the Jewish people to contribute toward the acquisition of materials for the purpose of rebuilding the Temple including the gathering and preparation of prefabricated, disassembled portions to be stored and ready for rapid assembly, in the manner of King David.

I would add two comments:

  1. These are stage setting events which will not unfold until after the Church is removed from the earth.
  2. Unknown to Israel, this third temple will be a Temple for Antichrist. See 2 Thess. 2:4
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Waves of change
Sep 1st, 2008
Art Sadlier

Since New Evangelicalism was born in 1948 we have witnessed a transition from the church of Philadelphia (fundamentalism) to Laodicea (compromising evangelicalism).

From that time on we have seen waves of change sweep over the Evangelical Church.

FIRST we were introduced to ecumenical evangelism by Billy Graham. The watch word became “infiltration” rather than “separation” from apostasy, however infiltration is a two way street.

SECOND we were introduced to social action, an attempt to change society from without rather than from within, by the power of the gospel to transform lives. All of the social evils were attacked with gusto; the church lost every single battle. The moral majority was the climax of this failure.

THIRD we were introduced to a new way to fill our churches, the church growth movement which evolved into the User Friendly Movement. Change every thing about the church that makes the Church look like the Church. Bring the world’s music and the world’s methods into the church, instead of the church winning over the world the world won over the church. Instead of lives being transformed, the church was corrupted with the world.

FOURTH we were introduced to the Purpose Driven Movement, this was a logical progression. Now the church enters into union with the world to change the world by social action. Rick Warren has moved to enlist one billion religious people to make a utopia out of the kingdoms of this world. John said, “If any man love the world the love of the Father is not in him’.

At this moment we are seeing, what I believe is the FINAL wave, the Emergent Church. This is a bold move to transform the church into the Apostate Church, the Harlot Church of Revelation 17. To finally remove any semblance of what the church is to believe and what is to be and do.

Paul foretold these things, “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;” 2 Tim. 4:3. “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith,” 1 Timothy 4:1.

This whole process has been immersed in deception from the start, as Jesus said it would be in Matthew 24; 4, 5, 11, 24, 25.

We live in days comparable to the days of Jeremiah, when Israel was being deceived and facing the Day of the Lord judgment. Jeremiah said, ”A wonderful and horrible thing is committed in the land; the prophets prophecy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means (own ideas); and my people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof?” Jeremiah 5:30-31. The words of Jesus should be ringing in our ears, “Come out from among them”.

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