|Editorial by Chris Josephson
". . . every wall shall fall to the ground" (Ezekiel 39:20).
There is much in the Bible about final shaking up of earth and heaven as we know it. The result and purpose of the shaking is a universal cleansing with all evil-doing falling through the cracks and perishing.
What brings on the Shaking?
Isaiah 2: "The lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down [These exact words appear twice in this passage.] . . . For the day of the LORD of hosts shall be upon every one that is proud and lofty and upon everyone that is lifted up; and he shall be brought low...for fear of the LORD and for the glory of his majesty when HE ariseth to shake terribly the earth." [This last phrase is also repeated in this passage.] verses 11, 12, 17, 19, 21.
The whys are also clearly spelled out in Isaiah 13:13 as depicted on our front cover: "THEREFORE I will shake the heavens and the earth shall remove out of her place, in the wrath of the LORD of hosts, and in the day of his fierce anger." Whenever we see a "therefore", we need to learn what it is there for! The context of Isaiah 13 tells us that judgment is to destroy evil, wickedness, arrogance, unabashed terrorism in short, all the egotistic pride of mankind manifested in rebellion and transgression of Gods laws for life on this planet. These trees of iniquity will be chopped down at the roots because "the cup of iniquity is full" and a righteous Creator would not be righteous if He let the earth go on forever destroying itself in such a mind-(and heart)-set.
"Judgment begins at the house of God"
Realization and confirmation of this is coming to us from other nations. The following are excerpts from newsletters from brothers at Emek HaShalom (Peace Valley) Israel:
"The mighty God, even the LORD has spoken and called the earth from the rising of the sun unto the going down thereof. Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God has shined. Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence; a fire shall devour before him, and it shall be very tempestuous round about him. He shall call to the heavens above, and to the earth, that he may judge his people, Gather my saints together unto me, those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice" (Psalm 50:1-5).
"Isnt it glorious and tremendous that we may live now in this very time? The Mighty God of Israel will cause His glorious splendor to shine forth out of Zion . . . He will no longer keep silent . . ."
"He will speak through fire. The fire will pass over Israel, too, and then it will spread out over the nations. For Israel it will be a judgment of mercy, a purification through and through; a loving them home for the House of Jacob. But for the nations, devastating blows because of their hatred for the nation chosen of God. A devouring fire shall go before Him. It will devour everything that can be consumed by fire....
"In Isaiah 29 we read of the coming great change.
"... the multitude of thy strangers shall be like small dust, and the multitude of the terrible ones [terrorists] shall be as chaff that passeth away: yea, it shall be at an instant suddenly. Thou shalt be visited of the LORD of hosts with thunder, and with earthquake, and great noise, with storm and tempest and the flame of devouring fire..." Then the hordes of all the nations that fight against the Hearth of God [Israel] that attack and besiege it will be as it is in a dream.
"It is a mighty gift of God that we may have the prohetic word so we can be orientated and know what is coming, and therefore need not fear. Isnt it remarkable and significant that right in the midst of all these happenings the Lord lifts up His voice calling unto us: "Gather my saints together unto me, those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice"...
"Let us now cast out of our lives all those thing which can be consumed by fire...
"We should like to repent together of all superficiality, of all the carnal needs of our well-nigh luxurious living, of all wasting of time on unnecessary things, that did not serve the advancement of the Kingdom of God...
"Dear Brethren, dont let anyone or anything keep you back. Walk in deep humility and self-abasement, so that you may be kept from delusions. Correspondingly with the breaking forth of the Splendor of God out of Zion, the evil and darkness in the nations increases in like measure.
"Oh Beloved, the Lord performs now a quick work. There is amongst the people a seeking and an asking after a new way. The pressure from without and the disunity from within the population is very great. Would that we stood now together in the gap and called out: Lord, spare Your people and inheritance, dont let them be put to shame!
"We also want to call out to you: Be of good cheer and cease not your labors, for your work will be richly rewarded.
"These last years we have been led of the Holy Spirit to humble ourselves, to plead and to seek the Lord in intercession...
"Unfortunately the powers of darkness are for the time being on the advance. They rob the people of Israel bit by bit of pieces of the heart of the Promised Land, and complete almost undisturbed the preparations for annihilation of Israel. But we are behind [Israel] with the fulfillments of the Plan of God, and the time is running out...
"Yet the Jewish settlers in Judea and Samaria stand daily in the gap, under difficult conditions, often in danger of life. Therefore it is our duty to support them spiritually as also materially-financially. . . More than 300,000 believing people united in prayer to protest the godless legislation in this land. This prayer gathering was so impressive by its unity, discipline and order that even early opponents of the demonstration expressed their respect. We also observed good progress in the hearts of the simple people. Many arrive at a faith in God. . . the hunger for truth is so great . . .
"We are in the hour of temptation which has come over the whole earth. If we allow ourselves to be misled today, our guilt will be greater than that of our ancestors, for we are in full possession of the Truth and the Light. Therefore it is important that we withstand the great temptations under the hardest stresses and become faithful.
"Let us humble ourselves together over our shortcomings and failures. For after such a long time of hearing the Truth we should be a better testimony, a greater Light. Let us perform an over-all cleaning, sanctify ourselves and remove all the accursed things. . ."
The handshake that continues to shake the world
Providential happenings [There is
no such thing as "perchance"]:
From a conference in Jerusalem of believers from around the world, come reports of a repentance spirit, a shaking and deepening led by humble servants of the Lord from "undeveloped" countries, which put to shame those from "advanced" nations in Europe and the Americas.
It was expressed, "Angels have received orders to stand ready and waiting to perform it [the shaking and sudden happening] . . the Church may be taken by surprise and enter the events unprepared. But if we turn to God in the manner and posture of Daniel, then we shall not only be prepared, but we shall rise to a level which has never been reached in all of the Churchs history. We shall say to nations and governments, to kings and queens: Thus saith the Lord....! and the kings and queens shall have to give account of their actions. Why? Because this word does not apply to years ahead of us, but rather to NOW! NOW! NOW!
"I do not say that our inner attitude will save us from encountering the events which are to come to pass . . . Its purpose is the cleansing of the Church and the World to draw our hearts to the Lord in order that all that keep us entangled will be removed, such as the spirit of Mammon. The purpose of all this shaking is not Judgment for people, but Judgment for all those things, with which the Church was and is entangled. He will withdraw from us all comfort and all those things which have confused and tied up our spirit and with which we are caught up. ... Therefore, our hearts must cry, Give me an undivided heart, O Lord, that I may fear your Name! . . .
"Wherever I look I see that God has begun to shake: individual ones, families, organizations, fellowships, are being in part shaken terribly. But this has got to be, to free from spots and wrinkles. God does this out of love and it is vital for us to understand this. We can meet Him only if we are holy as He is holy! ...He wants us to be ready ... therefore all else has to withdraw. Let us welcome His purifying fire....
"Many a person has lost his faith, or has become weak therein. Again others have fallen into sin and cooperate with it... The blessed Holy Spirit of God works nowadays in a completely new manner...The world over, and especially in Germany, Gods Holy Spirit calls the Christians to make a complete about-face, repent and confess sins. Even the most secret sins are to be brought into the light and one must make a radical end of every ungodly thing and separate ourselves radically from every spirit of the World and to ask the Holy Spirit that He convict us of every sin. Disobedience and defilement of the spirit and body must be brought into the light."
Call to BLI readers:
"Since they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham" (Col 3:9). Therefore, let us: "Put off concerning the former conversation [conduct] the old man which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; and be renewed in the spirit of your mind; and that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
"Wherefore, putting away LYING, speak every man with HIS NEIGHBOR: for we are members one of another" (EPH. 4:22-25). -
Excerpts of an article by Daniel Kurtzman, Jewish Telegraphic Agency.
Washington A handful of senators gathered in the spirit of post-impeachment reconciliation recently at an interfaith ceremony on Capitol Hill. Senators Joseph Lieberman (D-Conn), the Senates only Orthodox Jew, and Sam Brownback (R-Kan.), a Methodist, organized the event in hopes of starting a bipartisan healing process to move lawmakers beyond the polarizing divisions of recent months.
Although the low turnout did not appear to bode well for a new spirit of comity, many of those at the gathering said it may be a sign of the progress that has already been made toward reconciliation following the impeachment trial.
"This very divisive, troubling episode actually, I think, united us, as men and women as individuals who happened to be senators," said Lieberman, who, along with Brownback, co-chairs the Center for Jewish and Christian Values, which coordinated the gathering.
An observant Jew who found himself sitting in trial of President Clinton during the Sabbath, Lieberman pointed to examples of reconciliation in the Bible.
There is inspiration to be found, he said, in the story of Isaac and Ishmael, who came together to bury their father, Abraham; in Joseph forgiving his brothers for selling him into slavery; and in what he called "the reconciliation of God with all of us, His highly imperfect creations." -