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Posted in Pilgrimage, You, And Israel on 2007-03-05 01:33:38

I visited, or made the pilgrimage to Israel in January 1996, shortly after the assasination of Prime Minister Rabin. I went with a church/university group of 600 people for an 11 day tour/pilgrimage. During the tour through-out Israel, we crossed over between Israeli occupied land and Palestinian occupied land many times. We even drove up on the Golan Heights. At no time did I ever feel unsafe. It was a little different seeing armed security men in the streets but they never bothered us and we never got in their way. What I discovered about the safety of tourists, was that since both sides of the situation there depend on tourism financially, neither side targeted or interferred with tours. The only place we did not go was Jerrico, and that was because of safety issues, with the possible assassin being in that city and security forces searching it. But we went every place else in the country.

As for why I went. I wanted to stand where my Lord stood. I wanted to feel the places where my Lord had been and is coming back to. I wanted to see the center of the universe, Jerusalem. I had to see the Valley of Megiddo from the ground, so that when I see it next time with my Lord in the Air, I will recognize the place. For me, Israel is the 5th Gospel. It is the Gospel of the land, people and culture. being there brought my Bible to life. Now when I read about a place, I can see it in my mind, because I have been there.

I didn't rediscover God or my religion or my faith, or anything like that. Going to Israel, made my Bible and faith more alive. I was on a boat on the Sea of Galilee, where jesus walked on the water, where Peter fished, Where the storm was made calm. I was in Bethlehem, where Jesus was born. I was in Nazareth where Jesus grew up. I was in Jerusalem on the temple mount, where the Temple once stood and one day will stand again. I was on the Mount of Olives where Jesus ascended and soon will return. I saw the Eastern Gate that is now bricked up, but soon will be opened so the Messiah may enter. I walked in the valley where David slew Goliath. I was at the place where King Saul died. I stood on Masada and looked out over the Dead Sea. My Bible came to life for me, on my visit to Israel.

Posted in The Rapture on 2007-02-23 21:44:50

The time of the Rapture is Revelation 4:1.

"After this I looked, and behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter."

The "Come up hither" is the rapture.

The word Rapture comes from the Catholic Bible. From the text of the Latin Vulgate, [Latin: rapiemur] meaning "We will be caught up". In the protestant bible it is translated "catching away" or the "come up hither"

In rev. chapters 2 and 3, we are given the 7 church ages. The 7 churches of asia minor are both historical churches and church ages. We are currently in the laodicean church age, where the christian church is neither hot nor cold but lukewarm. This is the last church age, before the tribulation. This church age will end with the rapture of the church in Rev. 4:1. This church age could last another 100 years or it could end today, only God knows the time when the Rapture will take place.

There are many very intellectual theologians on all sides of the rapture doctrine. Some believe it happens before the tribulation. Some believe it happens during the tribulation, some believe that it happens at the end of the tribulation and some belive that it doesn't happen at all.

I presonally believe the rapture of the church ushers in the tribulation. This makes me a pre-trib christian. One reason is what I said at the beginning, the "Come up hither" of Rev. 4:1 is at the end of the the church age in chapters 2 and 3 and before the tribulation judgements of chapters 6 and onward. Another reason I am a pre-trib is that throughout biblical history God never judges the righteous with the unrighteous. He always seperates the righteous from the unrighteous before judgement. (example at the flood, God sperated Noah and his family from the wicked, at the time of Sodom God seperated Lot and his family before destroying the city, at the foot of Mount Sinai God seperated those who would follow Moses and worship Him from those who wanted to worship the golden calve before he opened the earth and swallowed the unbelievers.)I believe that God will seperate His church from those who refuse to believe before he judges the unbelievers during the tribulation. And still another reason I am pre-trib, is that The Anti-christ cannot take power until the hinderer is gone. Christians are the hinderer because christians possess the Holy Spirit within us. There is a verse for this, but I can't find it right now, sorry. When the church is raptured into heaven so goes the holy spirit and there will be no hinderer left on the earth to hold back the coming of the anti-christ.

Other verses speaking of the rapture are, 1 Thessalonians 4:16–17, which states, "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ will rise first; Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air; and so we shall always be with the Lord."

Again we have the "Caught up together" phrase, or Rapture. The dead in Christ will rise first, and those that are alive will follow them.

And another verse about the rapture: 1 Cor. 51, 52 and 53. Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruption must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality."

It is said that a twinkle is less than a blink. So faster than you can blink we, christians, will be gone. Raptured. No longer of corruptable bodies but bodies incorruptable, like that of our risen Lord. No longer mortal, with death as our future, but immortal with all of eternity as our future.

Hope this helps with your study into the Rapture of the Church. "Soon and very soon, we shall see the King."

Posted in How Straight / Bi / Gay are you? on 2007-02-23 04:22:39

I wish to thank you for including option "X".

There are a few of us in the world that are NOT sexually attracted to either gender. We make emotional bonds with people, and make very good friendships, but without the sexual ties. The latest label given to us is "asexuals", meaning people without sexual attraction to either gender.

Again, thanks for including us in your poll. I think yours might be the only poll that includes us.

If you wish to know more about us, this is a website with more information.