The militants, who have vowed to rid Somalia of Christianity, killed Guled Jama Muktar on Sept. 25 in his home near Deynile, about 20 kilometers (12 miles) from Mogadishu. The Islamic extremist group had been monitoring his family since the Christians arrived in Somalia from Kenya in 2008, said the source in Mogadishu, who requested anonymity.
The Islamic militants, who are fighting the transitional government for control of the country, knew from their observations of the family that they were Christians, the source said.
‘I personally know this family as Christians who used to have secret Bible meetings in their house,’ he said.
Based on talks with the boy’s parents and their neighbors, the source said al Shabaab members arrived at Muktar’s home at 6 a.m., when his parents, whose names are withheld for security reasons, were already at work at their retail space at the Hamarweyne market on the outskirts of Mogadishu.
The extremists found Muktar as he was preparing to go to school, he said.
‘The neighbors heard screaming coming from the house, and then it immediately stopped,’ the source said. ‘After awhile, they saw a white car leaving the homestead.’” Read more.
Flashback: 4 Christian Orphanage Workers Beheaded in Somalia – “Somali Islamic extremists beheaded four Christians recently after kidnapping them last month, according to eyewitness accounts reported to International Christian Concern (ICC). Members of the Islamic extremist organization Al-Shabaab had kidnapped Fatima Sultan, Ali Ma’ow, Sheik Mohammed Abdi, and Maaddey Diil on July 27 from their coastal town of Merca, 56 miles from Mogadishu, and eventually beheaded the Christians after they refused to renounce their faith in Jesus Christ.” Read more.
Flashback: Somali Rebels ‘Behead Spies And Christians’ – “Somalia’s hard-line Islamist rebels beheaded seven people for being ‘Christians’ and ‘spies’, witnesses have said. The al Qaeda-linked al Shabaab group, which controls large tracts of south Somalia and parts of the capital Mogadishu, has carried out similar executions before. But the beheadings in the south central town of Baidoa were believed to be the largest number of killings at one time, Somalis said. ‘Al Shabaab told us that they were beheaded for reasons they described as being Christian followers and spies’…” Read more.
Flashback: Christian Aid Workers in Somalia Beheaded for Converting from Islam – “Muslim extremists from the al Shabab group fighting the transitional government on Sept. 23 sliced the head off of Mansuur Mohammed, 25, a World Food Program (WFP) worker, before horrified onlookers of Manyafulka village, 10 kilometers (six miles) from Baidoa. The militants had intercepted Mohammed and a WFP driver, who managed to escape, earlier in the morning. Sources close to Mohammed’s family said he converted from Islam to Christianity in 2005.” Read more.
By Neil Snyder – “Radical Islam is a growing problem throughout the world. In Europe, it’s a burgeoning issue that politicians have been unwilling to address properly because of the influence of Muslims there, but it’s a critical problem in the United States, too — especially in our nation’s prisons.
The mood in the U.S. is so anti-anti-Islam that politicians run for cover whenever Islam is raised as an issue. Not so with Representative Peter King (R-New York). He endured death threats and ridicule from liberals because he held hearings in the House of Representatives to investigate the Islamist threat we face as a nation. The people who castigated King because he took his job in the House seriously will be the first in line to raise a ruckus if/when a homegrown terrorist, maybe an ex-convict who is out on parole, attacks innocent men, women, and children in this country.
I’m reminded of a scene in the movie Ghost Writer. Pierce Brosnan plays a former British prime minister being charged with crimes against humanity in the International Criminal Court (ICC) in Geneva, Switzerland for trying to prevent terrorist attacks in Great Britain. Toward the end of the movie, Brosnan tells his ghostwriter (Ewan McGregor) that if he had it to do all over again, he would have two lines for people boarding planes out of England. The first line would lead to planes carrying passengers whose terrorist affiliations and connections were not investigated. The second line would lead to planes carrying passengers who had been cleared. He says, in effect, ‘You know which planes the chronic complainers would board. Every one of them would choose a plane that we cleared.’
The movie is fiction, but the problem is real. World leaders who attempt to deal with the growing Islamist militancy problem that’s spreading across the globe like a putrid infection are at risk of being charged with crimes against humanity or worse in the ICC. For example, President George W. Bush was forced to cancel a trip to Geneva in February 2011 to avoid being charged with crimes against humanity for the role he played as president of the United States in creating the federal prison in Guantánamo Bay, where the U.S. holds captured terrorists.
Radical Islam Is a Global Threat
An article in a June 2011 issue of The Weekly Standard titled ‘From Somalia to Nigeria: Jihad’ stops far short of revealing the extent to which radical Islamists have infiltrated countries around the world. ‘From Somalia to Nigeria’ is across the heart of Africa, from the Arabian Sea to the South Atlantic, but jihadists have a major presence in every North African country, too, from Morocco to Egypt. Their presence in the Middle East is obvious as well, from Saudi Arabia to Lebanon and Syria, but it doesn’t stop there. They have created strongholds in Iran, Afghanistan, and the Indian subcontinent. Their reach extends from India to the Philippines and Indonesia and into the heart of Asia from China to Russia.
Jihadists are active in Europe, too, but their presence doesn’t stop there, either. They have footholds in most South American countries, including Venezuela, Bolivia, and Brazil. Like a thriving cancer, jihadists have extended their reach to North America from Mexico to the United States to Canada.” Read more.
Buy a book written by virtually any popular ‘Bible prophecy teacher’ today and you are guaranteed — at some point within the confines of its pages — to read a sentence or two that sounds a little something like this: “The Bible says that we are not appointed unto wrath, which means that Christians are not destined to suffer the wrath of God. Since the Tribulation is the wrath of God that means, therefore, that the Church must be removed from the earth before the Tribulation begins. Otherwise, the Bible is lying.” You get the idea. Sounds reasonable, right? I mean, if the premisses are true then the conclusion must be sound, correct? In theory, yes, but only if all of the premisses are true. So allow me, if I may, to take a closer look at the ‘not appointed unto wrath’ proposition that leads many of us to conclude ‘removal from the earth’, and join me as together we delve a little bit more into the text in an effort to better understand the wrath that we see in the Book of Revelation, and the wrath that we specifically are not appointed unto. Something very, very important has been lost in translation. Read more…
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, “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 shall 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 shall we ever be with the Lord.”
1 Corinthians 15:51-52, “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.”
And there it is. Two of the — if not the – most popular ‘rapture’ passages in the entire Bible. Yet when many Christians read about the timing of this event “at the last trump” they are either unaware, or because of an already preconceived assumption on this very subject, refuse to even consider that this is a direct reference to the 7th and last trumpet that John describes in the 10th chapter of Revelation. But why? Admittedly, even I was not aware of the significance of Revelation 10 for many years, but am now more than convinced that we can corroborate through the context of text that this is indeed the last trumpet that the Apostle Paul wrote about to the church in Corinth.
For a moment, if you will, toss aside any preconceptions you may have on the timing of the rapture and approach the text as if it were for the first time. Approach it with the heart of a Berean so that together we may search the Scriptures. Read more…
Revelation 13:16-17, “He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.”
The most popular view today regarding the Mark of the Beast in Revelation 13 is that it is a literal mark physically placed in the forehead or right hand of those who worship Antichrist. Many teachers of Biblical eschatology will even refer to modern 21st century technology and point to some type of tattoo or implantable microchip under the skin when attempting to explain the mark. But why? What is in the text that leads many to believe that this mark must be physical when, after all, virtually every one of us would agree that while the book of Revelation speaks about the dragon, the Beast, the “Whore of Babylon” or the mark of Christ upon the elect etc. that these descriptions are not referring to a literal dragon, a literal animal, a literal prostitute or a literal seal of Christ? This is obviously figurative language pointing to something completely different. On the other hand, so to speak, is there anything from Scripture to indicate for us that this mark need not be a physical mark at all, but could instead be something else entirely?
After careful consideration, I believe that the Mark of the Beast is very likely a spiritual mark just as the mark of Christ upon the elect is spiritual. Since many will resist the suggestion that a figurative Beast will also have a figurative mark, despite the fact that there is nothing in the text stating that the Mark of the Beast must be physical, it is important to rightly divide the Word of God and study, from the whole of Scripture, the significance of the hand and head and how it often relates to man’s condition in the Biblical text. Read more…
Many Christians today believe that when Antichrist comes on the scene he will be ruling or will soon rule some form of global government. Although there are a few verses in Scripture that may appear to give credence to such a notion at first glance, the whole of Scripture supports neither the idea of a “One World Government” (OWG) ruled by Antichrist, nor the idea of an end-of-days leader who controls every nation on earth.
Many popular teachers of Biblical eschatology who support the idea of a OWG and Antichrist who controls the government of literally every nation on earth will agree, at the very least, that the last portion of Daniel 11 from verses 36 and beyond all refer to the final years leading up to the Second Coming of Christ. What they fail to consider, however, are the following questions that should be obvious to anyone who holds to both of these positions: Read more…
One common misconception, in my view, is that the war described in Ezekiel 38 and 39 — often referred to as the War of Gog-Magog — is a war that happens either just before or immediately after the start of “Daniel’s 70th week”. If we take the time to closely examine the text, however, I believe that we can ascertain that Gog-Magog is a battle that, without a doubt, can only culminate at Armageddon.
Pauly Want A Cracker?
When it comes to the Gog-Magog battle of Ezekiel there seems to be this circle of prophecy teachers who keep repeating the same rehashed theories over and over in an effort to impose a specific preconceived idea or timeline into the text of Scripture, instead of allowing the full counsel of Scripture to speak for itself. They “parrot” one another, as it were, and all too often students of Biblical eschatology who study the positions of a particular author or teacher may then refer to a couple of others who say essentially the same thing for “inquisitive” reinforcement. Subsequently, they are forced to conclude that these authors must be correct because they have “all” arrived at the same conclusion from the text. The conclusion is further strengthened in the student’s mind when the very same teachers also echo similar rebuttals in an effort to show why any opposing position cannot be correct. But as the Bereans in the Book of Acts were called noble because they searched the full counsel of Scripture daily to see if what they were being taught was so, we too also need to mimic the Berean example. Read more…
A thought came to me some time ago with respect to “the temple of God” and how many students of Biblical eschatology expect there to one day be a new Jewish temple built on the Temple Mount before the Second Coming of Christ, one in which the Antichrist himself would eventually stand in and literally claim “I am God.” While an effort does exist by some orthodox Jewish groups to rebuild the third temple, I think it would be wise for all students of Scripture to consider the possibility that this may not have been what the Holy Spirit was referring to in 2 Thessalonians 2 and Matthew 24.
The Temple of God in the New Testament
To understand why, we first need to keep in mind that the Apostle Paul and Jesus both pointed to a Last Days event that would take place just before the Day of the Lord (Christ’s post-trib Second Coming). Paul referred to it as the man of lawlessness/man of sin who sets himself up in “the temple of God” (2 Thess 2:4), while Jesus described it as the Abomination of Desolation standing in “the holy place” (Matt 24:15). Many have assumed that the temple mentioned by Paul must be a physical temple in Jerusalem, however according to the verses below we are continually reminded that the true temple of God is no longer a physical temple — after the final sacrifice of Christ the veil was torn and animal sacrifices were no longer of any value — but is instead now a spiritual temple: Read more…