Light for the Last Days

Signs of the Times – December 2019

Floods and fires around the world.

There has been an increase in extreme weather events around the world.  Floods have followed abnormally heavy rains in England, France, Spain, Italy and Greece. Mega high tides have swamped the historic heart of Venice, submerging almost 85% of the land. Abnormally cold weather has hit North America. Millions have been displaced from their homes and agricultural land flooded in severe flooding in north east Nigeria, Central African Republic and East Africa, where rainfall has been 300% above average. Cyclones have devastated the Philippines, Vietnam and Bangladesh, forcing hundreds of thousands to evacuate their homes and affecting millions of acres of crops.

Enormous wildfires have ravaged large portions of northern California, New South Wales and Queensland. Much of Australia is tinder dry after months without any rain.  Rivers are drying up and animals and crops are dying.

India’s capital Delhi was blanketed under a hazardous shroud of air pollution as people have struggled to breathe in the toxic smog.  A quarter of the world’s pigs have died in a swine fever epidemic sweeping the world, around 200 million in China alone.  In China the public is beginning to panic over the potential outbreak of bubonic plague. A nuclear accident in northern Russia released a large amount of radiation into the air. There is a worldwide increase in seismic activity – earthquakes and volcanoes.  Americans are fearful that a huge increase in minor earthquakes will set off a major event devastating its west coast.

Many of these phenomena are being linked to climate, change / global warming. Newspapers carried articles referring to a warning from more than 11,000 scientists claiming ‘The world’s people face “untold suffering due to the climate crisis” unless there are major transformations to global society. We declare clearly and unequivocally that planet Earth is facing a climate emergency.  To secure a sustainable future, we must change how we live. This entails major transformations in the ways our global society functions and interacts with natural ecosystems. There is no time to lose. The climate crisis has arrived and is accelerating faster than most scientists expected. It is more severe than anticipated, threatening natural ecosystems and the fate of humanity.”

Some dispute this climate alarmism, with one commentator reviewing the claim of 11,000 climate scientists and finding that many of the people named were not experts in this field. Natural claims that there are natural reasons for the extreme weather and that ‘man-made global warming’ is a complete hoax and science lie.’ Some suspect a globalist conspiracy behind all this, pointing to the fact that Greta Thunberg, the poster girl for climate alarmism, is being promoted by organisations linked to George Soros and others who are using the climate change issue as a means to work for global government.  An article called ‘The Depopulation Agenda’ on Prophecy News Watch site claims globalists are using this issue to create global panic out of fears of coming environmental collapse which will call for global governance in order to protect the earth from a coming environmental apocalypse. 

The Bible does indicate disturbances in the environment at the end of days, including results which line up with some of these events – increase of storms, trees burning, fish dying in the seas, waters polluted and rivers drying up, people dying as a result of extreme heat, plagues and earthquakes in various places.  See Isaiah 24, Matthew 24, Luke 21.25-28, Romans 8.18-22, Revelation 8.7-12, Revelation 16. It also predicts the rise of the antichrist / beast with global government in Revelation 13. All these things coming together mean we are living in the last days before Jesus returns. He will judge the world in righteousness and take up the reins of power over the earth, as He rules for 1000 years, putting right the mess humans have made of the planet He gave us to look after.  See Isaiah 2.1-4, 11-12, 35, Zechariah 14, Revelation 20

Islamophobia Laws – a danger to freedom of speech.

Islamophobia laws are likely to be a backdoor to the suppression of any criticism of Islamic beliefs and practice.  The Muslim Brotherhood and the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC) have long been promoting this cause as a means of shielding Muslims and Islam from any criticism.  This includes any investigation of the origins of the Koran and its content and questioning of Muhammad’s status as Allah’s final prophet. Of course Muslims themselves must remain free to attack Christianity, including the fundamental belief in the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ, His atoning death on the cross and resurrection from the dead, all of which are denied in the Koran.  Muslims also must remain free to fight against Zionism and Judaism and any other forms of religion and politics they don’t like. They must also be free to oppose Christian evangelism to Muslims, remembering that under Islamic law the penalty for ‘apostasy’, converting from Islam to Christianity, is death.  

Fighting Islamophobia is a cause that many British politicians are embracing and pushing, but in the form proposed by the OIC it will end up stripping away our freedoms, if we don’t stand up and oppose some of the legislation being proposed.

According to an article by the Clarion Call, this is already the case in Canada, where Motion M103, which is not yet law, has directly affected free speech causing most Canadians to be terrified of even asking simple and valid questions about Islamist radicalisation and terrorism.  In the UK, the All-Party Parliamentary Group on British Muslims recently proposed a new definition of Islamophobia as follows: “Islamophobia is rooted in racism and is a type of racism that targets expressions of Muslimness or perceived Muslimness.” This definition – which hinges on the vague notion of “Muslimness” or “perceived Muslimness” – has been adopted by the Labour Party, the Liberal Democrats Federal board, Plaid Cymru, the mayor of London as well as several local councils, without due consideration of its impact on freedom of expression.

There is concern that allegations of Islamophobia will be used to shield Islamic beliefs from criticism, and that formalising this definition will result in it being employed, effectively, as something of a backdoor “blasphemy law.” Indeed, we already see it being used as such, stripping away our freedoms.  This vague definition will most likely be used to shut down legitimate debate. Already, the temptation to use it against expressions of opinion contrary to Islam is a cause for serious concern.

The UK Policy Exchange held an event on the subject of Islamophobia at the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester. One of the speakers on this panel was Dr. Qanta Ahmed, an observant Muslim who has received much acclaim for her work against Islamists and Islamism.  Ahmed explained the problems with the term Islamophobia and made a crucial distinction between Islamophobia and anti-Muslim xenophobia. Ahmed issued an important warning, implicitly directed at the Conservative Party and the Government: “If you fail to define Islamophobia accurately, and if you fail to separate it from anti-Muslim xenophobia, you will fall prey to the rulebook, the playbook, of the Islamists, and you will have given over the command of the language for these critical debates to the Islamists – and I advise you not to do that.”

UK Tory MP Nusrat Ghani, a Muslim, acknowledged the reality of anti-Muslim hatred but warned that extremists had their own agenda. As she put it:  “I hope that today when we have this discussion, we can focus on the two things that are absolutely important. One is focusing on the victims of anti-Muslim hate or abuse, and the second is ensuring that we continue to have the freedom of speech to criticise Islam, as you would criticise any religion, and also criticise extremists within Islam, because if they had their way, I wouldn’t be here sitting at the top table speaking to you.”

The Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) pushes for laws on Islamophobia in the West which if applied will end our freedom to debate the truth of beliefs based on the Bible as opposed to those based on the Koran.  Our mostly deluded politicians fly their anti-racist credentials by going along with this and ignoring what happens in Muslim countries where Muslims can dictate the terms of what you are allowed to say and believe.

The Clarion Project article concludes by asking what is happening in some of the Muslim majority countries:

  • In Pakistan, there is continuous persecution of minorities including Christians, Ahmadiyas and Hindus. Their blasphemy law has caused dozens of people to be jailed with no accountability or recourse to fair trials.
  • In Egypt, Coptic Christians are routinely persecuted, their churches burned and their women and girls kidnapped and forced to convert.
  • There is massive oppression and violence against non-Muslims in many parts of Muslim Africa.
  • In Iran, Christians, Bahais and other minorities are continuously persecuted.
  • In Saudi Arabia , non-Muslims have no rights.

So, when it’s Muslims who are the oppressors, what kind of phobia should we call it?

Pope Francis declares that Christian Fundamentalists are “A Scourge”

The following comes from the official transcript of the remarks that the Pope made on the 18th of November…Beware of the fundamentalist groups: everyone has his own. In Argentina too there is a little fundamentalist corner. And let us try, with fraternity, to go forward. Fundamentalism is a scourge and all religions have some kind of fundamentalist first cousin there, which forms a group.

Ostensibly, these remarks apply to fundamentalists from all religions. But by mentioning Argentina, the Pope made it exceedingly clear who his real target was. There aren’t any “Muslim fundamentalists” or “Hindu fundamentalists” in Argentina. The fundamentalists that he was referring to are the Christian fundamentalists in Argentina, and in the very next sentence he denounced such people as “a scourge”.  There has been a tremendous growth of Evangelicals in Argentina, while Catholics saw deep declines, something which has no doubt caught the Pope’s attention.

In terms of Christianity ‘fundamentalism’ is generally associated with those who believe the historical accuracy of the Bible, including the historicity of Genesis and God in Creation, Christ’s Virgin Birth, Resurrection, and Atonement and His imminent Second Coming. It means someone that believes the Bible is literally true, that believes that Jesus Christ died for our sins and rose again, and that believes that Jesus is coming back someday.

In other words, the Pope considers millions of Bible believing Christians to be a plague that is infecting our planet.

During those same remarks on the 18th of November, the Pope also once again pushed his “interreligious cooperation” agenda…

As I said during the World Conference of Human Fraternity: “There is no alternative: we will either build the future together or there will not be a future. Religions, in particular, cannot renounce the urgent task of building bridges between peoples and cultures. 

The time has come when religions should more actively exert themselves, with courage and audacity, and without pretence, to help the human family deepen the capacity for reconciliation, the vision of hope and the concrete paths of peace” (4 February 2019). Our religious traditions are a necessary source of inspiration to foster a culture of encounter. 

It is fundamental for there to be interreligious cooperation, based on the promotion of sincere and respectful dialogue that goes towards unity without confusion, maintaining identities. But a unity that transcends the mere political pact.”

This Pope has become increasingly aggressive in his efforts to foster unity among the various major religions of the world.  Last month, he held a much publicized meeting with Thailand’s supreme Buddhist patriarch Somdej Phra Maha Muneewong.  That historic meeting was held at Bangkok’s famous Ratchabophit Temple, and the Pope met with the Buddhist patriarch directly in front of a 150-year-old gold statue of Buddha.  The Pope even removed his shoes as a sign of respect for the Buddhist temple.

Pope Francis also brought a gift for the Buddhist patriarch.  It was a copy of a document entitled “Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together” which the Pope and the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar both signed in Abu Dhabi last February.  The following is what Vatican News had to say about the exchange of this gift…

Pope Francis presented gifts to the Supreme Buddhist Patriarch, including a copy of the Abu Dhabi Declaration on “Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together”. The Pope signed the document together with the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, during his visit to the United Arab Emirates in February this year.

“Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together” sounds like an innocent title, but it is actually a loose blueprint for uniting the various religions of the world.

For example, at one point in the document it specifically says that the fact that there is such a diversity of religions in the world has been “willed by God in His wisdom”… “The pluralism and the diversity of religions, colour, sex, race and language are willed by God in His wisdom, through which He created human beings. This divine wisdom is the source from which the right to freedom of belief and the freedom to be different derives. Therefore, the fact that people are forced to adhere to a certain religion or culture must be rejected, as too the imposition of a cultural way of life that others do not accept”

In other words, this document is saying that God is pleased with all of the religions of the world and that they exist because it was His will for them to do so. And the document concludes with an appeal for “reconciliation and fraternity” among the various religions of the world in order that “universal peace” may be achieved…

On the political front, globalism may have lost some momentum, but in religious circles it is steaming right along.  The push for a one world religion is happening right out in the open, and very few people seem alarmed by it.

Michael Snyder, Originally published at End Of The American Dream – reposted on Prophecy News Watch with permission.

Belief in the Bible incompatible with human dignity.

A British court has ruled that belief in the Bible is “incompatible with human dignity.” That statement came in a case involving Dr. David Mackereth, a committed Christian who has worked as an emergency doctor for the National Health Service for 26 years. He said he was fired from his job because he refused to call a biological man a woman. The court’s ruling stated: “Belief in Genesis 1:27, lack of belief in transgenderism and conscientious objection to transgenderism in our judgment are incompatible with human dignity and conflict with the fundamental rights of others, specifically here, transgender individuals.” 

Dr Mackereth said he was removed from his job with the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) in late June 2018 after his boss “interrogated” him about his personal religious convictions, asking “If you have a man six foot tall with a beard who says he wants to be addressed as ‘she’ and ‘Mrs’ would you do that?” Mackereth said that because of his religious beliefs, he could not, and his job was subsequently terminated.

Mackereth’s attorney, Michael Phillips, told the court, “His belief in the truth of the Bible, and in particular, the truth of Genesis 1:27: ‘So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.’ It follows that every person is created by God as either male or female. A person cannot change their sex/gender at will. Any attempt at, or pretence of, doing so, is pointless, self-destructive, and sinful.”

Mackereth responded to the ruling by describing transgenderism as a delusional belief which is a ‘rebellion against God, both pointless and sinful.’  He said the change in societies values is based on political pressure not scientific evidence: “I am not alone in being deeply concerned by this outcome. Staff in the NHS, even those who do not share my Christian convictions, are also disturbed as they see their own freedom of thought and speech being undermined by the judges’ ruling. No doctor, or researcher, or philosopher, can demonstrate or prove that a person can change sex. Without intellectual and moral integrity, medicine cannot function and my 30 years as a doctor are now considered irrelevant compared to the risk that someone else might be offended.”

Christians apparently must submit to the homosexual and transsexual agenda and have no right to object to ideas that contradict scripture and reason.  The doctor has lost his job because he can’t call a biological male a female – both on the grounds that this conflicts with his faith and with his practice as a medical doctor who in the course of his work has to know the difference between men and women. What people are told to believe in our benighted society may have changed but biology doesn’t and nor does God. What is at stake is the freedom to speak the truth given to us in the Bible. The LGBT agenda which is being imposed on all aspects of society is taking that freedom away from us.’

Hindu radicals attack Christians to ‘make area free of Christianity’

Indian authorities jailed church leaders and their families after Hindu extremists disrupted a worship service, beat individuals, and livestreamed the events on Facebook in efforts to make the area “free of Christianity.”

Following the attack, the group’s organizer, Yadav, went live on Facebook, showing off the Christians who were forced out of their house church and onto the streets. In the video, Yadav is seen pestering women about why they attended the service and claiming that Christianity has destroyed the entire district, according to ICC.  Eventually, the police arrived, and church pastor Manohar Prasad Varnwa, his family, and a few members were forced into a police vehicle. Meanwhile, the assailants stood by, watching the Christians’ arrest. The livestream ends on Yadav’s final comment: “Our job is to make this area free of Christianity.”

According to pastor Varnwa, police and radicals forced him to sign a document promising that he would not preach the Gospel or conduct prayers.   Police denied the forced signature but admitted the team had been sent to the church when they received word that the congregation was “promoting Christianity.” Just a week earlier, Hindu radicals attacked Pastor Varnwal and another church member and accused them of kidnapping infants. The Hindus physically assaulted the two men and then accused them of illegal conversions when Bibles were found on them.

Over the weekend, it was reported that a massive crackdown on house churches by radical Hindu groups in the Lakhimpur Khere district of Uttar Pradeshafter led to the jailing of at least eight Christians on charges of forced conversion.  Another pastor in the district named Brijraj told ICC there has been a trend of attacks on churches in the district, adding, “All the pastors in the district are on alert and the entire Christian community is in a deep despair.”

India is ranked as the 10th worst nation in the world when it comes to Christian persecution, according to Open Doors USA’s 2019 World Watch List. Over 1,400 incidents of persecution against Christians in the country have been reported since the year Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party rose to power, according to an initiative of ADF India. 

In a recent interview with The Christian Post, Pastor Samuel, an indigenous missionary working on the ground in India, revealed that Hindu extremists often won’t kill Christians, but they will terrorize and intimidate them, or maim or mutilate them “so they cannot live a normal life.  Christians are being targeted by the government; it’s seeking to halt the growth of Christianity and wipe out the church,” Samuel said.

Islamic terror in Africa.

On May 12, in the small West African nation of Burkina Faso, as many as 30 armed Islamic terrorists stormed a Catholic church, slaughtered at least six Christian worshippers — including the officiating priest — then burned the church to the ground.  On Sunday, April 28, in Silgadji, Islamic terrorists stormed a Protestant church near the end of the service and killed six Christian worshippers, including the pastor, 80-year-old Pierre Oult, and his two sons. According to a local Christian:  “The assailants asked the Christians to convert to Islam, but the pastor and the others refused. They ordered them to gather under a tree and took their Bibles and mobile phones. Then they called them, one after the other, behind the church building where they shot them dead.”

The country is 60% Muslim, 23% Christian, and 17% animist or other, and has seen an alarming growth of jihadist violence caused by fighters affiliated to al-Qaeda and the Islamic State group as well as the local Ansarul Islam [Champions of Islam].  The Islamic terrorists operating in Burkina Faso seem to be similar to other African jihadi groups, such as Nigeria’s Boko Haram and Somalia’s Al Shabaab. Like them, when not terrorizing churches and slaughtering Christians, they target anything else that might be associated with the Western thoughts and ideals. Besides churches, schools are also a favorite target of the militants, who are pushing to make the country an Islamic state and impose Sharia Law. Of 2,869 schools in Burkina Faso, 1,111 have been closed in the last three years as a direct result of Islamic extremist violence.

As with other African Islamic terror groups, the motivating ideology fuelling the terrorists of Burkina Faso is distinctly Islamic and jihadi in nature. For example, after eight Muslims were arrested for their role in terrorist attacks that killed 14, their prosecutor said, “they all carried on their foreheads or had white bands on which were written in Arabic the following expression — translated as — ‘there is no god but Allah and Muhammad is His Messenger.'”

The situation in Burkina Faso is a reminder that, if groups like the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria have suffered a defeat, the jihad continues to spread like wildfire in more obscure and forgotten nations around the world, and to consume countless nameless and faceless innocents.

Tony Pearce