Ripping Weather

Tornados are usually associated with mid- America, and not the DC area.   We look at the sudden devastation and carnage with alarm, but from a distance.  It must be a terrible thing to lose one’s residence upon a ripping storm of wind.

I was in a Rockville Md. restaurant a couple of weeks back when the DC area went into sudden alarm.   Nearly every cell phone near me went buzzing in the early- warning mode.  It turned out that the wind storm hit elsewhere, such as upon Gonzaga High School (near DC’s Union Station), tearing off a chapel roof. Other places in Maryland/D.C. received damage.

The National Weather Service says that their detection services only give minutes in warning time, and they are reluctant to give false warnings out in a half- hour/ hour’s lead, except in super cell cases. The regular funnels in the sky form quite unpredictably.

People feel quite helpless with this info.  At least in mid- America, as in Oklahoma, they have shelters built for the expected tornados of the year.   Yet who can be ready for life’s storms?

Spiritually, we know that we will have our physical sufferings and calamities to last through, but the Great Storm to fear is for any person to go against the Lord in the end.  Jeremiah 23:19 says “Behold, the whirlwind of the Lord’s indignation shall come forth, and a tempest shall break out and come upon the head of the wicked.”

The Lord will reveal a fury on those who have dared flaunt His laws, as in committing the deadly sins.  Jeremiah’s Word of the Lord addressed those Israelites who had fallen from grace in following false prophets of idolatry.  They were sooooooo guilty before God in their bad sin.  Yet, in 2017 we Christians are also caught up in some serious business before God, in our falling into temptation in joining the modern world of idolatry and falseness, with all its associated pain.

For example, the culture is drug abusive, child eliminating, and greed run.   That right there would have a Jeremiah word to earth today.  The drug culture is everywhere,  bringing bad crime with it, such as here in Maryland.  We are guilty as Marylanders of it dominating society.   I think of Baltimore’s homicide reports being up so high already in 2017.   Protecting innocent life is also lost to us in society, with the rampant abortions still going on in America of millions of children gone (including Maryland or DC babies).  But what of how bad greed is– “the lust of money is the root of all evil” says the Word to us today, as we pursue it as a god, and watch some of our more powerful or talented people be sorely tempted into terrific sin of hidden corporate greed, as it does serious harm upon any people in their path.  Love of others is little considered here.

Whether it is personal sin or what is done in our society, there very obvious things in which such a prophetic message like Jeremiah 23:19 could be levied upon us, with Heaven saying:  “Stop!” “Repent of these ways!”  “Follow Me, not these false gods.  Turn to Me and be saved!– (while you can).”

There is a storm coming upon evildoers that needs immediate attention and address on this earth.  God is a judge of truth.   He will come in truth one day and nothing of darkness will be able to last before Him.  The Lord reigns and He sends His word down to us now:  ‘Be humbled, O people, I, your God, AM a force not to be reckoned with.  If you think a reckless wind storm in your fallen world is bad, then you are little prepared for what is so much greater and devastating. Amen.’

That was a spiritual message that God was looking to get across to me, and pass on.

In finish, in this blog entry, I look at a funnel picture from the newspaper, and I see a another similar message in it:  ‘Warn My people of my wrath.  Have them come to find shelter in My Mercy.  Lead them to repent, while they still can, to find their refuge in Me.’

Or, in the words of the old rock band BTO, whose song I just heard on the XM 70’s channel, the world’s storm winds are bad, but The Lord’s are…. well… You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet.

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4th Sunday of Lent Homily “Redemptive Suffering”

Live Homily was trimmed short.  Here’s the fuller, blog version…

The Help of Redemptive Suffering

A man goes into the doctor complaining of aches all over, and points and touches his kneecap and says to the doc: “I have pain here.”  Then he points and touches his elbow and says:  “I have pain here.”   Then he points and touches the back of his neck, and says:  “I have pain here, too.”   Then, he’s ready to point to something else, but the doctor interrupts him and says: “ Sir, I think I already know what’s wrong with you.”  The patient is elated—saying: “’You do, Doc?  That’s great, because I need help.  What is it– arthritis, bone degeneration, injuries?”   The doc says:  “Just let me look at your pointer finger—I think you must have injured it.  Ah yes—you’ve cut your pointer finger!   Nothing else is wrong!  (Everything you touch therefore just feels like it’s hurting…)”  🙂   Oh, if suffering only had easy solutions like that one, in the joke!

But when we are in some serious pain, it’s no laughing matter.

We also can struggle in the spiritual life when we suffer.   Like the false assumption made in today’s gospel about the blind person, some people can think that suffering happens just to bad people, or to people who have it coming to them from God, or suffering happens to dumb people.  So when suffering comes to them, they are looking for how the sufferer might be at fault, for being bad, deserving of hurt, or just dumb.  Wrong assumption.  Jesus says that suffering was not the fault of the man born blind, nor the fault of his parents.  But then Jesus adds something important, that the man’s suffering will be involved with God’s compassionate help.  Jesus says the man’s blindness was there that the works of God might be made visible through him.

What? People must have wondered.  Did Jesus just say God is with suffering?

God is with sufferers, though He’s not the cause of suffering.  Yet God can work with any suffering person to have the experience be redemptive and saving.   Yes, we are already broken people to start with—but God is a healer.  God is a Redeemer, too.

Redemptive Suffering might be hard to believe of Jesus, but for the fact that He practiced it in a grand way in saving sinners by His crucifixion on a Cross, and then in His rising up afterwards in a victory to share with us—and it won our salvation and our right to have Him live inside our souls– so we take heed of Him to listen and learn.

Suffering, first, causes the person acting in soul and conscience to reflect on life.   You or I ask: Where is God in my suffering? Did I do something wrong? What will be the quality of my life from here on out?  Simply, we want to make sense out of that which doesn’t seem to make sense.

Understanding a share of the meaning of suffering has come via some experiences in my own life.  While my pains have been small compared to others, one big accident I had suffered in life pointed me to a higher meaning for my life (since I survived it—and looked to know why), another incident showed that I need to exercise some caution over my need for success and acceptance of others, and another suffering situation showed me that I cannot always be in control of things, even my own life, but that it’s ok.    These are some life lessons in redemptive suffering.   I came out better due to the suffering.   I used the suffering for good.   I accepted it as part of God’s plan to shape me, or to shape another via me.   It’s not an easy thing, but it is reassuring that, as Jesus said, “the works of God might be made visible” through me in some episodes of life.

Jesus has redemptive power.    It is part of His whole being of Grace.   He answers our questions of suffering in some simple lessons— like that of the pearl fisherman seeking a treasure embedded in the dark heart of the oyster, so we have shining pearls of grace hidden in the darkness of our suffering.  God will bring forth His grace and pearls in our own oyster’s to open.   (So let’s start shucking, rather than ducking, our pain.)

When we survey human history, it becomes evident that suffering is an inextricable part of the human condition. It’s not a matter of whether we will suffer during our lives, but when. And more specifically, how will we suffer: poorly or well?

When we fail to find meaning in our suffering, we can easily fall into despair. But once we find meaning in our suffering, it is astounding what we can endure, both mentally and physically. The key is not the suffering itself, but the meaning found within it.   Here is where our Lent and our standing at the foot of Jesus’ Cross might truly help us.  Jesus calls us to join Him, to even become His body, or an embodiment of believers under Him, the Head of the Church.   He permits us to give our suffering with His perfect suffering, again in trust of the Father Almighty. Christ asks for us to offer our suffering as part of our becoming fully one with Him.  Jesus did this redemptive work as one of us, suffering many things, all with a goal in mind—to present it to the Father as a perfect, saving act of service and love.   When Jesus perfectly offered it all at the Cross, as His final act, the Father received it as “redeeming.”  Jesus is Risen.   Our path in His paschal mystery now can lead us to gains from our pains, victory over any misery.   Trust in God.

Let us understand that we are called to co-suffer with Him.   You see—some people want a convenient and easy theology or faith approach that claims that Jesus suffered so that we wouldn’t have to?  But that’s wrong teaching.   Jesus suffered the Cross, because we couldn’t save ourselves, so that we gladly have had Him stand in for us.   But Jesus didn’t eliminate suffering here on earth.   His believers were expected to go through some of it, even as the Beatitudes say of our life in Him.  We are blessed, but we suffer some for it, too.   Also, not everybody was healed by Jesus from states of suffering.  For one, He did not overthrow the Roman Empire in His 33 year visit to Israel, so there would be much persecution and suffering ahead to the Church because of that.   Yet Jesus does say a whole healing is coming to His people, and an eternal life.   That is a very good thing He promised, so to make all the ordeals worth it.   We won’t suffer damnation nor separation from God any longer, provided we cling to the Lord and His salvation.   We need to suffer through what He allows to happen to us.

Pope John Paul wrote an apostolic letter on suffering, and in it he says that the work of Christ doesn’t guarantee an escape from suffering.  No-instead, Jesus has changed the meaning of suffering. We are now joined through baptism with Christ in His death and resurrection, and we have become intimately united to Him, so much so that we are His Body. Because of our union with Christ, even our suffering is changed; it becomes redemptive. Because Christ loves us so much, He invites us to participate in His redeeming work by allowing us to offer up our sufferings in union with His.  Pope John Paul II said, “in the cross of Christ not only is the redemption accomplished through suffering, but also human suffering itself has been redeemed” (Salvifici Doloris, 19). In other words, our suffering is changed and is worth something if it is in union with Christ. Every time we suffer, we have an opportunity to either run from Christ, or embrace the suffering as an opportunity to love and walk as He walked.

St. Paul experienced much weakness and suffering, but when he prayed about it, Christ answered: “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” As a result, the apostle could proclaim, “I will all the more gladly boast of my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may rest upon me” (2 Cor. 12:7-9). Paul understood that our life is a cooperation with the work of Christ when he wrote: “Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I complete what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the Church” (Colossians 1:24). Think about that: Paul said that something is lacking in Christ’s afflictions. What could possibly be lacking in Christ’s afflictions? Answer: Our part!  While that is miniscule compared to Christ, “we still have little part to play in the world’s Redemption.” (SD27–Pope JPII)  It’s a grace of “redemptive suffering.”

We can participate with Christ in redeeming the world.  So offer up your pain.

From the Silly to Serious Signs– Part two

In my last blog, we were looking at Signs of the Times of the Second Coming of Christ.

I have two more “signs” of some historic notice to highlight in today’s column.  Yet first, here is an extended review of our Catholic beliefs on the ‘end things.’  I thought it necessary.

About the Second Coming, Catholics believe Jesus will come again. We teach that Jesus could come again at any time. His return is immanent. The Church’s Creed affirms that when Jesus returns, He will judge both the living and the dead. At that time, the world will come to an end. Catholics reject the belief in any coming “tribulation period” or a “rapture of the church” common among some other Christian denominations.  We believe Jesus will simply return, judge all of humanity, and bring an end to time.”

About the related idea of a Kingdom of God reign, Catholics see the Kingdom of God as something present and visible in the Catholic Church (and to wherever God will want to extend His body of believers into His elect), but we well also speak of it as something greater yet to come in experience in heaven. Catholics reject a literal millennial kingdom period, a belief common in some other Christian denominations. Saint Augustine first articulated kingdom view in his “City of God.” Yet he meant the age of the Church would be this kingdom period.  Catholics expect the Church and the gospel to spread to the entire world before the end comes, encompassing the entire earth in the made-available Kingdom of God.   That, indeed, is what we are trying to do presently.  Each Mass ends with a clergyman’s dismissal, such as “Go and announce the Gospel of the Lord!”

Christ will come.  We need for people to come to know Him before He appears in Glory.

We Catholics, for our whole history, have professed our belief that Jesus will come again in a glorious Second Coming.  Our Mystery of Faith in the center of the Eucharistic Prayer of Mass (as prayed/sung by the people) proclaims it and pleads God for it: “Lord Jesus, come in glory!”  Our Scriptures proclaimed in our liturgies announces it, such as in Revelation 1:7 (New American Bible) “Behold, He is coming amid the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him. All the peoples of the earth will lament Him.  Yes. Amen.”  Or in Micah 1:2-4,11; 4:1,3 “Hear, you peoples, all of you; pay attention, O earth, and all that is in it, and let the Lord God be a witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple. For behold, the Lord is coming out of his place, and will come down and tread upon the high places of the earth. And the mountains will melt under him, and the valleys will split open, like wax before the fire, like waters poured down a steep place…I will again bring a conqueror to you, inhabitants of Mareshah; the glory of Israel shall come to Adullam (Canaan).”  “…In the latter days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of The Lord’s house shall be established on the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and peoples shall flow unto it…“And he will judge between many peoples, and will decide concerning strong nations afar off: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; and nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.”  Matthew’s Gospel ending (Mt. 24:30; 26:64) are proclaim texts quite familiar to Catholic ears about the End Times- “And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in Heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory…(and Jesus said to him), You have said one thing, nevertheless, I say to you another, that, hereafter shall you see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and then coming in the clouds of heaven.”

So, while no one knows the day, nor should try to know it– of this Glorious Return of Jesus– He did leave some clues to the End Times signs.  Here, as promised, are two more such “signs.”  They are taken from the same Matthew 24 text.(vs. 3-8)

A) Growth of false teachers/ antichrists and deceivers of the Gospel message in the End Times.  B) Wars, earthquakes, famines as “birth pangs” of The End being near.

Jesus pointed to these things as He said in the finish of His ministry, while sitting on the slopes of the Mount of Olives. His disciples came to him privately and asked, ‘When will all this take place? And will there be any sign ahead of time to signal your return and the end of the world?’ Jesus told them, ‘Don’t let anyone mislead you. For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am the Messiah.’ They will lead many astray. And wars will break out near and far, but don’t panic. Yes, these things must come, but the end won’t follow immediately. The nations and kingdoms will proclaim war against each other, and there will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world. But all this will be only the beginning of the horrors to come.‘”
This translation doesn’t spell out what the “horrors” mean, but Strong’s Concordance communicates that the end times will be analogous to the birthing process, because  the word “horrors” comes from the word “odin” which is best translated as “the pain of childbirth” or “birth pangs.”  This means that, much like birth pangs, signs of the end times will appear with greater frequency and intensity as Christ’s return draws near.

History shows that wars, famines and earthquakes are increasing in frequency and intensity.  Let’s see the figures.  According to a Wikipedia list of wars, the past 500 years have witnessed an increase in the frequency of wars:  15th Century – 29 wars.  16th C. – 59. 17th C. – 75.  18th C.- 69.  19th C. – 294.  20th Century – 278 wars.  The first decade of the 21st Century already did witness 55 wars, putting humanity on course for 550 wars over the next one hundred year period.
According to Wikipedia, the past 500 years have also witnessed an increase in the frequency of famines: 15th Century – 6 famines.  16th C. – 10.  17th – 24.  18th – 28.  19th – 30.  20th Century – 44 famines. The first decade of this century alone witnessed 12 famines already, putting humanity on course for 120 famines for this century!
As the population of the world has grown, famines have caused more and more death and destruction in their wake.  Yet is it a population problem?  No.  It’s a greed problem and a pride problem.  We have great capacity to feed the world, even of this size now.
According to a Wikipedia list of earthquakes, the past 500 years have witnessed the following number of earthquakes described as a magnitude 7.0 or greater:
15th Century – 2 earthquakes    16th – 3 of them.   17th – 7 of them.  18th – 13 of them.   19th – 29 of them.   20th Century – 123 of them!  The first decade of this 21st Century already witnessed 144 earthquakes with a magnitude of 7.0 or greater, putting humanity on course for 1,440 such earthquakes over the next century.  ‘Yikes!
The dramatic increase in devastating wars, famines, and earthquakes from the time of Jesus until today is one of clearest signs of the end times.  So it is a good thing to bring yourself to be ready for the Coming of The Lord.

As for false messiahs, antichrists and the like– just think of the big opposition to the Catholic Church today.  She seems to be a target for many.  Many would like to take her down.  Yet Jesus knew this from the start, saying to Simon Peter:  “The gates of hell shall not prevail against you.”  That comment from the Savior indicates how He knew they would definitely try to defeat or stop us.  Many today will indirectly be an opponent of The Church, with persons who will claim their own authority to bring a counter-message to that of the Church, as in preaching to “itching ears” as 2nd Timothy 4:3 describes.   Many declare their own versions of Christianity today, ignoring the One Jesus founded to be kept through time until His return.  The numbers of separate churches or communities calling themselves Christian is staggering in 2017.  The teachings of Jesus in John 17 are not much followed today, bringing on all the disunity of those called as “Christian.”  The “love one another” commandment of our Lord seems to be set aside instead for selfish things.  Even Gandhi said that perhaps the world’s biggest sin (amidst a world of people calling themselves ‘decent’) is greed of self.

The Loving Oneness of Christ Jesus was meant, most of all, to be expressed in the Lord’s Supper, the Eucharist.  The Pauline mandate for the Eucharistic sacrifice by priests (as himself) to be prayed with the faithful, until Christ’ Return, is not followed at all outside the original Catholic orthodox Church.  “We proclaim the death (sacrificial offering) of Christ until He comes again,” said St. Paul in 1st Corinthians 11:26 in his epistle text on the Mass of the early church in Greece.  The true Church has the Eucharist to offer (re-present) to God.  The Church has the successor to Peter and the apostles, too.  Yet many choose to stand outside of her (or one might say: HIM).   Paul said that we are to strive to be “in Christ.”  He says it 160 times in his epistles.  Yup.

That is the sad state within Christendom–our division.

Then there is the awful state outside of Christendom, of people claiming to be equal or better than ‘regular’ or historic Christianity.  This time of history is full of many cults, some of the occult movements most obviously under Satan, others in new age movements under some spirit, not to the honor of Jesus, but still there are left the millions of others in false groups (cults) that claim some connection to Christ but not to His divinity.  Those cult members and false teachers are in a dire state themselves, outside of the salvation teaching of the Lord Jesus, Who very much IS Divine.  Jesus is God and man.   Scientology followers, Mormons, Christian Scientists, Unitarians, The Way members, Jehovah Witnesses and many more such cults claim to be godly, but there is not the acknowledgement of any to Jesus being as Lord God over them, that is, not in the way as He asked of His own.  thDNHZGYSJJohn’s epistles in the Bible are all about warnings of such false teachings and teachers.  The Early Church also has her hard fought accounts versus many heresies and distortions of the Truth of Christ.   Those original orthodox believers would be aghast at what is taking place today in these above false movements.thLK3WKK6Z

If one were to put up a road sign of all this spiritual confusion, then I think the one of the intersection depicted would be it.

Yet, more worse than the false teachings or astray ways going on is what’s ahead.   Gaining force to affront the Church is the real possibility for a global false leader of huge magnitude to mislead the world and to gain a massive following.  If the smaller antichrists of Hitler and Stalin weren’t bad enough last century, then we might shudder at who and what this century might bring us.  The rise of globalization and maybe a multinational world government and controlling system on the earth could bring the AntiChrist.  One day, a single man will rule all the people and nations on the earth, so seems to warn St. John’s Apocalypse vision: “And he was given authority to rule over every tribe and people and language and nation.” Revelation 13:7
Given the current global financial crisis and the potential catastrophe of a global war, more and more diplomatic leaders and world politicians are calling for global government.  And as human technology continues to advance and mature, we’re quickly reaching a point where global totalitarian rule will be possible.  Some great deceiver will come forth to persecute the Church and Christ’ own, while seemingly being the popular figure for worldly people to follow, right to their oblivion.  Yet there will be a people of great faith keeping obedient to Christ and His Truth and Headship of the Body.  “And I saw another angel flying through the sky, carrying the eternal Good News to proclaim to the people who belong to this world – to every nation, tribe, language, and people. ‘Fear God,’ he shouted. ‘Give glory to him. For the time has come when He will sit as judge. Worship him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and all the springs of water.'” Revelation 14:6-7 (NLT)      Or worship the Deceiver.

What an awful time of conflict that portends to be.   Let’s pray for the strength to “endure to the end and be saved.(Matthew 24:13).”

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Prophecy is telling us that Christ is coming.
“In the same way, when you see all these things, you can know His return is near, at the door.” Matthew 24:33

The time on the clock of time is ticking.  “Another reason for right living is that you know how late it is; time is running out. Wake up, for the coming of our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed.” Romans 13:11.

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From the Silly to the Serious Signs– of the End Times

th8UXRGELIA Long Teaching on the End Times. Back in Advent Season, the Church took its annual look into the Word of Jesus’ Promise to Return in glory. In this 6th week of Ordinary Time daily Masses, we are hearing of Noah’s story (told in Genesis) and we relate it to Christ Jesus as being the ultimate fulfillment of Noah’s hope, as His Body will be the “ark” in which people will find our “passage” from the judgment onto the great hope of Heaven. Noah was the one who found favor with God before He unleashed the Flood.  All who were with Noah (man and creature) were saved.   So it will be in Glorious manner with those who are with and in Christ Jesus; they shall be in His favor and saved by God by His provision.  We consider the Church to be the new ark for people to come and get into Christ for salvation.    In this Year of Grace, that is a sound message of our Saving Grace via Christ the Lord, which is offered by Him, can be lived now through Him, and is to come for us as with “The Day” of salvation.  (Our Rising Up day in Jesus–the Second Coming Day.)

In today’s Genesis Bible story (Wed. 6th week Ordinary Time), the image of the dove coming back to Noah’s Ark is seen as the fore-sign of The Holy Spirit, the Dove of Peace, coming to the Church that is together in the Lord in the end times.   With peace in the Holy Spirit, we shall not fear The Day of the Lord ” (Old Testament; יֹום יְהוָה  and New Testament ἡμέρα κυρίου, as in “The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD does come upon us all. ” (Joel 2:31, cited in Acts 2:20).

When we get along to April and to the Easter Season, we shall ponder the End Times promises again and from the perspective of Jesus’ Sign of Jonah, that He is Risen and, for those people of faith (of humbled, repentant hearts in Him), they have The Advocate in Heaven coming in Return for them.  Until His Return, when the Son shall come and raise our bodies up to be with God where our souls have gone to, we live on in Faith.   We keep on growing in The Lord and in His Body until The Day.    We live on to know the Lord better and to keep in hope in His Promises, and we share our Faith of the great grace of Jesus for saving sinners.

As Peter says: “But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.” 1 Peter 3:15 (NLT)

As we wait upon the Lord of Glory, we must hold on against the current of all those who mock and scoff at such a Day to come or that Christ Jesus would be their Judge.  But He will!  Many think there is no Second Coming and Judgment to arrive from the Eternal Son Jesus.   The apostle Peter knew this sad conclusion from the start of the Church when he preached to the flock:  “Most importantly, I want to remind you that in the last days scoffers will come, mocking the truth and following their own desires. They will say, ‘What happened to the promise that Jesus is coming again? From before the times of our ancestors, everything has remained the same since the world was first created*.'” 2 Peter 3:3-4 (NLT)                        *=BIG HINT–but it will not remain the same

Well, things really aren’t remaining the same, as some scoffers say.   We press on in history, seeing some prophetic signs getting met, which hadn’t occurred before on earth.

Here are two such signs of the times:

The Re-Emergence of Israel as a nation.  The Bible mentions this as possibly a key sign of the final days.  Like as prophesized in Ezekiel 37, God promised to bring the Jews out of exile. He promised to bring them back into the land of Israel.   If that is so, if literally interpreted, then Israel re-emerging as a nation has taken place.  It came about right after World War II, though following their trying Holocaust period.  Since God has originals ties to Israel, we would think this is a noticeable development.

Yet, there could be a different interpretation of the Dry Bones vision of Ezekiel.  If the prophesy is about the Church being raised up as the new Israel, in the power of Jesus (its Founder), where and when an elect people are brought back into existence at Jerusalem (where the Church began) by a New covenant fulfillment–then the prophesy has been in place and ready for its Glorious fulfillment.  In the prophesy, it says: “O my people, I will open your graves of exile and cause you to rise again. Then I will bring you back to the land of Israel. When this happens, O my people, you will know that I am the Lord.” Ezekiel 37:11-13 (NLT)  The Church is a people who are alive again, born again, into the start of eternal life.  Though we still experience natural death, we know that Jesus promises us to all have our graves opened on The Last Day for us to be given “resurrection of the body and life everlasting.”  *(so says N.T. Scripture and our Creed)

Another Sign of The End: The Dramatic Increase in Travel and Knowledge
In a vision, God revealed prophetically to Daniel that in “the time of the end,” travel and knowledge will increase: “But you, Daniel, keep this prophecy a secret; seal up the book until the time of the end. Many will rush here and there, and knowledge will increase.” Daniel 12:4 (NLT)    Let’s consider this two-fold thing.

At the time the Book of Daniel was written, horses were the world’s the fastest mode of transportation, which remained until the train, plane and automobile. Now we move about on the earth quite quickly and freely.  Today’s world is definitely not “the way it’s always been.” Frequency and speed of travel have markedly increased!
What about knowledge? In Daniel’s time, few people received a formal education. In fact, basic literacy was a foreign concept to all but an elite minority of the world until the past 100 to 150 years. Yet, in the past century alone, human knowledge of science, biology, technology, and countless fields of endeavor has exploded. And the advent of the Internet has created a worldwide archive of human knowledge that far exceeds even the wildest dreams of the great ancient civilizations. Is humanity’s knowledge base today “the same as previous generations?”  Nope.  That word in 2nd Peter (which we wrote of in the top of this blog) tells it right.   We are moving forward and rapidly to the Day of the Lord!

In the next blog, we will consider two more of the Signs of the Times.   One is of the sign of false messiahs/anti-christs and the other is the birth-pang signs of the earth reeling from its long-continuing broken state.  Be prepared for an even-longer blog than this one.  I got into the topic, borrowing from a source a blog reader sent to me. thvk6431l8  The poster here is someone’s end times advice!