ARTICLE Top Iranian General: Islamic Army In Syria Awaiting Orders To Eradicate Israel

Many nations in our world, especially the 57 Arabic countries, have been planning to destroy Israel since her inception in 1948.  Yikes, are they in for a big surprise!  The Islamic nations and terrorist groups are ALWAYS boasting how they will annihilate Israel and push her into the Mediterranean Sea.  They attacked her in 1948, 1967, 1973, and on several other occasions.  Israel smashed her enemies and increased in size after every attack!  Israel is the one nation with a 100% guarantee to enter the Millennium totally unscathed.  Israel is the apple of God’s eye:  Psalm 17:8, Proverbs 7:2, Zechariah 2:8.

Genesis 12:3 King James Version (KJV)
And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.

Maranatha, Pastor Steve  <><

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ARTICLE
Top Iranian General: Islamic Army In Syria Awaiting Orders To Eradicate Israel

By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz Breaking Israel News July 10, 2018

Hossein Salami, the vice commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, recently gave a speech full of threats aimed directly at Israel, referring to the Palestinians as Iran’s main tool against their true enemy: the United States.

“Seventy years have passed since the policy of England and America planted in the Islamic world an accursed and criminal tree [i.e. Israel],” Salami began, in the speech on Quds (Jerusalem) Day last month that was just translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).

“For 70 years, this poisoned dagger has been embedded in the body of the Islamic ummah, and all the problems of the Islamic world stem from the existence of the false, counterfeit, historically rootless, and identity-less regime named Israel.”

Salami gave the speech in the city of Mashhad to commemorate Quds Day, officially called International Quds Day, an annual event held on the last Friday of Ramadan that was initiated by Iran in 1979 to express support for the Palestinians and oppose Zionism and Israel. In his speech, he describes Israel as a tool, bringing the threat of the US into the heart of the Islamic world.

“[Israel] brings the range of America’s missiles against the Islamic world 12,000 kilometers closer, and becomes a tool for imposing America’s policy against the Islamic world,” Salami said. “[Ayatollah Khomeini] transformed the heart of Iran with the great [Islamic] Revolution, [and set] a new power against the evil of the arrogance [i.e. the U.S.], against the supporters of the Zionist regime, and against this regime itself.”

He emphasized that due to its size, Israel has no defense against the Iranian threat.

“The Islamic Revolution created a mighty power called Hizbullah, that today, as the Zionist regime itself acknowledges, has over 100,000 missiles ready for launch,” Salami said. “The Zionist regime has no strategic-defensive depth, and in some places, the breadth of this regime is barely 34 km, and in order to destroy it, it will take only one ‘Jerusalem operation’ to destroy it.”

During the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war, Iran referred to its operations against Iraq as “Jerusalem operations.” Another such operation against Israel is imminent, Salami warned.

“Today an international Islamic army has been formed in Syria, and the voices of the Muslims are heard near the Golan,” Salami said. “Orders are awaited, so that the custom of God vis-à-vis the eradication of the evil regime [Israel] will land and the life of this regime will be ended for good. The life of the Zionist regime was never in danger as it is now.”

In his speech, Salami identified the Palestinians as Iran’s primary weapon against its enemies.

“Once, the Palestinians fought with stones and slingshots, but today they are armed with missiles,” Salami said. “Every regime site is today under fire from the missile launchers. The farther and more deeply [we look], the more we see that there is a politically and militarily powerful regime in the world that raises the flag of fighting evil. This regime is Iran.”

Iran is considered the head of Shiite Islam. As such, Salami called on young Muslims around the world to join in fighting against Israel and the US.

“Iran invites the Muslims to jihad, and the spirit of jihad today breathes in the body of the Muslim nations. The young Muslims who care are proud of fighting the Zionists, the Americans, and their allies, and becoming a martyr is an honor for them. This is our main might.”

Originally published at Breaking Israel News – reposted with permission.

Read more at http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/article.cfm?recent_news_id=2387#DFtrvQxutqsqpgTw.99

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End-Time Weariness: Haven’t We Waited Long Enough?

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End-Time Weariness: Haven’t We Waited Long Enough?

By Jan Markell/Olive Tree Ministries July 13, 2018

The malady goes by many names: End-time weariness; Rapture fatigue; Israel burn-out. The results are the same: The scoffers and skeptics are gaining too much territory and too many followers.

The fact that the King is coming is boring and just old news. What Hal Lindsey wrote in 1969 in his classic “The Late-Great Planet Earth”, in the eyes of many, did not come to pass. Thus, there is a collective so-what sigh.

Haven’t we waited long enough??

It is the tragedy of my lifetime – and I never thought I would see the day.

Late-Great Burn-Out?

Recently I read a revealing article in The Guardian recommended by Bill Koenig. It talks about the destruction of the new Christian progressiveness. This article suggests:

– “The Late-Great Planet Earth” and the “Left Behind” series prophesied a lot of things that have not yet come to pass. Haven’t we waited long enough? Isn’t it time to move on from their message?

– Those who hung onto the words of the popular 1970s Larry Norman song, “I Wish We’d All Been Ready” have also waited long enough. Life has always been filled with guns and war and everyone gets trampled on the floor as the song goes, but so what? Almost 45 years have passed and the world is still groaning. It’s time to move on.

– “We’ve been through all of this before” has replaced apocalyptic fervor! There is nothing new under the sun. Your words of warning are now falling on deaf ears.

– Maybe you evangelicals have sided with the wrong players. Don’t you know that hundreds of innocent Palestinians are being killed daily by apartheid Israelis?

End-time weariness. Rapture fatigue. Late-Great burn-out. The Chosen People have lost their chosenness. The article in The Guardian suggests all this and more!

The Spoilers: Date-Setters

Add to this mix that some date-setters have been wrong. Edgar Weisenhunt and Harold Camping not only set dates, but re-set dates when nothing happened the first time! Hal Lindsey never said 1988 was the date of the Rapture but that was the accusation. He suggested 40 years after 1948 was an intriguing date. That’s all.

The Bashers

Then came the bashers who are respected in some circles. Hank Hanegraaff said there was no Rapture to be found in the Bible. Who knew? Well, he’s no Bible Answer Man to me.

Lynne Hybels and World Vision teamed up to condemn Israel as almost barbaric persecutors of the Palestinians in their one-sided “Hope for the Holy Land” tours across America.

What’s in the water Frankie Schaeffer is drinking? When he, like Hanegraaf, joined the Eastern Orthodox Church, he went sideways. He now goes into tirades on MSNBC against what his parents – Francis and Edith Schaeffer – might have believed about the end-times.

He slams his “good friend” Jerry Jenkins for coming up with the “Left Behind” books that belong in the Twilight Zone category according to Schaeffer. What’s in them can only be believed by white evangelicals who support Donald Trump, says Frankie.

Internet broadcaster Rick Wiles consistently says that Dispensationalists and Christian Zionists are the root of the world’s problems and also the church’s problems. We are destroying the world.

Destructive Social Justice

If your teen or twenty-something kid goes off to a Justice Conference, they will likely hear Marxist Cornell West rather than any pro-Israel speaker. The Catalyst Conferences aren’t much better when it comes to promoting end-time theology. A persecuted Palestinian might be an honored guest so that the social justice cravings of the Millennials can be satisfied.

Social justice has gained ground over good old-fashioned evangelical support for Israel and her God-given land. The under-age-40 crowd is listening to voices that are not telling the truth. They are hearing that Israel is illustrative of a new form of apartheid; that the Palestinians had their land stolen; and don’t you know that the Church is the new Israel?

Most reject what their parents grew up on: Israel is the apple of God’s eye and the key to the end of the age.

These are just a few of many reasons why this glorious message that years ago had nearly every Christian excited that today might be the day is now a big yawn! It is now a wake-me-when-it’s-over sentiment. Add to that the fact that our churches have dropped this message!

Deja vu All Over Again!

So when stunning events take place such as the moving of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, the aligning of the nations in the Mideast that could be a part of the Gog-Magog War, and the convergence of dozens of end-time signs, there is a collective sigh. Some will say it’s déjà vu all over again. You said that 40 years ago. Nothing happened.

So the fact that things are all coming together excites only a tiny remnant who will never grow weary of keeping their eyes on the sky! If you are among them, hang in there. He is coming soon and Israel remains the apple of God’s eye!

Jan Markell is the founder of Olive Tree Ministries and will be one of the featured speakers you can livestream free this weekend – July 13/14 at the God’s Prophetic Voices To America Conference.

Read more at http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/article.cfm?recent_news_id=2400#8lmJ1T28h4PtqLgg.99

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2 Peter 3:4-6 King James Version (KJV)
And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.
For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water:
Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished:

“People who scoff at Christ’s coming are just another sign of His coming.”

Maranatha, Pastor Steve <><

The Trump ‘Peace Plan’ Is Coming

By Shoshana Bryen/JNS.org July 07, 2018News Image

ARTICLE
The Trump ‘Peace Plan’ Is Coming

By Shoshana Bryen/JNS.org July 07, 2018

A new Middle East “peace plan” is gestating and, according to the Trump administration itself, nearly ready to hatch.

It is easy to be cynical. Peace plans have been produced by various administrations and yet, there is no peace.

On the other hand, the Trump administration–as it has on other issues–is laying the groundwork differently. The refusal of the Palestinian Authority to engage with the president’s envoys, interestingly, has not stopped the shuttle with Israel and Arab states (including a reported joint meeting between Israeli, American and Arab intelligence chiefs), and decisively telling the Palestinians that they will not be paid for attending–and, in fact, have assets to lose by not participating.

We don’t, of course, know the American endgame or its likelihood of success, but there are basically only two possibilities:

The establishment of a Palestinian state with “security guarantees” for Israel; or
Recognition by the Arab states and Palestinians of Israel as a legitimate and permanent state in the region.
If it is the former, it is doomed.

Current Palestinian leadership believes–and encourages people to kill and die for–the principle that Jews are running a country on Palestinian land. That the Galilee, Haifa, Jaffa, Ashkelon and Beersheva belong in the Palestinian Arab state. Not to mention Jerusalem. Given that, why would anyone expect the Palestinians to agree to accept a truncated state separated and squeezed by Israel, Jordan and Egypt? They have their “narrative” and want what they say is theirs.

The Palestinian Authority is not participating in the preliminary talks because the option of agreeing that Israel gets to stay on “Palestinian land” in perpetuity is impossible. The benefit of prior “peace plans” for the P.A. is that its leaders could take what they were offered–settlement freezes, money, status, etc.–and continue to work towards the day when they, not the Jews, would be in charge. Under that scenario, “security guarantees” for Israel are meaningless.

Any plan with hopes of success must start with the legitimacy and permanence of the State of Israel. U.N. Security Council Resolution 242 (1967) lays on the Arab states responsibility for “termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect for and acknowledgment of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every State in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force.”

Resolution 242 has been on the books for 51 years. It is time the Arab states (minus Jordan and Egypt, which have done so) accept their responsibility.

Political life in the region did not begin with the Oslo Accords in 1993, when the Palestinians were treated for the first time in history as a political entity. It began in earnest long before the independence of Israel in 1948, when there were just Arab states that invaded Israel in an attempt to destroy it.

Had the Arab states had accepted their defeats in that war and additional wars they initiated in 1956, 1967 and 1973, there wouldn’t be Palestinian refugees. If Arab states hadn’t provided political and financial support to Palestinian terrorist organizations when they realized they couldn’t wipe Israel out with their Soviet-style armies, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

The Palestinians are not just Israel’s problem to solve. Arabs put Palestinians in camps with multigenerational refugees. There isn’t a single Palestinian refugee camp in Israel. To think that the Palestinian refugee problem created by Arab rejectionism can be resolved by Israel in the space between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea is misguided and impossible.

The children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of people who may have been displaced 70 years ago are not refugees. They are victims of Arab intransigence over the creation of Israel and their own indifference to Palestinian misery. Arab states imprison them, and the United Nations feeds them–and they have little future to contemplate.

The Palestinians must become citizens of actual countries. And it is not impossible. The Palestinian leadership claims 6 million “refugees.” (UNRWA says 5 million). OK. Two million are citizens of Jordan but still hold refugee status–something not legitimate in international refugee law, incidentally.

Another 2 million live in areas that are the putative Palestinian state, governed by Palestinians. That takes care of 4 million of the 5 million or even 6 million. Certainly, international aid money will have to follow that determination.

The Arab states should step up for the Palestinians.

The Trump administration has talked about billions in Arab investment in Palestinian areas, but the problem is not a lack of money. The actual investment follows legal and economic systems designed to return profits to the investors, like Israel.

To get there, Palestinian society must come off its war footing and agree to harness the talent and capability of individual Palestinians with their closest and best trading partner, Israel, and with others. But the Palestinians can’t get there alone.

Today, when the Sunni Arab states look to Israel as a partner against Iran and make use of Israeli defense capabilities (as well as water and solar technologies) under the table, the time has come for them to step up and make the deal public and irrevocable.

Finish the 1948 war. Accept the legitimate and permanent presence of the State of Israel, even if it is 70 years late. Provide support for the Palestinians to build a new government committed to the economic and social health of its people.

That is a plan for peace.

Originally published at JNS.org – reposted with permission.

Read more at http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/article.cfm?recent_news_id=2376#bPSVtviKTvfCfA5F.99

 

Apostles Today ~ Part 4 of 4, May 9, 2018 By ELLIOTT NESCH

Apostles Today Part 4
May 9, 2018 By ELLIOTT NESCH
Are there Apostles today? In this final installment of a 4-part series on Apostles today, we will take a look at what the Ante-Nicene Fathers (ANF) said about whether or not Apostles continued to govern the Church.
The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) claims that foundational and governing Apostles have been restored to the Church. We have already examined these claims in the light of Scripture in Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3. Now we will consider the historical evidence in addition to the biblical case.                                The Foundation of Apostles
Scripture teaches that the Church is “built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone” (Ephesians 2:19-20). Did the early Christians understand this passage to teach that Apostles were to govern the Church through the ages? Or that Apostles held a “foundational office” which was ongoing throughout the Church age?
In the quote below, Polycarp mentioned both Apostles and prophets, such as those mentioned in Ephesians 2:19-20. Rather than having an ongoing role, the Apostles possessed the unique role of having originally preached the Gospel to the first generation of Christians.
Let us then serve Him in fear, and with all reverence, even as He Himself has commanded us, and as the apostles who preached the Gospel unto us, and the prophets who proclaimed beforehand the coming of the Lord [have alike taught us]. (ANF, 1.34)
Ignatius also noted the foundational role of the Apostles Below he mentioned by name the Apostles Peter and Paul.
“The people shall be called by a new name, which the Lord shall name them, and shall be a holy people.” This was first fulfilled in Syria; for “the disciples were called Christians at Antioch,” when Paul and Peter were laying the foundations of the Church. (ANF, 1.63)
Unlike the Apostles today within the NAR, the early Christians were very cautious about using that title. For example, Ignatius wrote:
But shall I, when permitted to write on this point, reach such a height of self-esteem, that though being a condemned man, I should issue commands to you as if I were an apostle? (ANF, 1.67)
I do not, as Peter and Paul, issue commandments unto you. They were apostles. (ANF 1.75)
Entreat of our Lord in my behalf, that through these instruments I may be found a sacrifice to God. I do not, like Peter and Paul, issue orders unto you. They are apostles. (ANF, 1.103)
I do not issue commands on these points as if I were an apostle; but, as your fellow-servant, I put you in mind of them. (ANF, 1.112)
According to Ignatius, the Apostles are unique because they had authority to “issue commands” or write Scripture.
Justin Martyr also mentioned how the writings of the Apostles and prophets were read in church gatherings. He noted how the Apostles and prophets spoke for God.
And on the day called Sunday, all who live in cities or in the country gather together to one place, and the memoirs of the apostles or the writings of the prophets are read. (ANF, 1.186)
For as he believed the voice of God, and it was imputed to him for righteousness, in like manner we having believed God’s voice spoken by the apostles of Christ, and promulgated to us by the prophets, have renounced even to death all the things of the world. (ANF, 1.259)
Justin’s mention of Apostles and prophets together appears to be an obvious reference to Ephesians 2:19-20.
Irenaeus also observed how Peter and Paul laid the foundation of the Church.
Matthew also issued a written Gospel among the Hebrews in their own dialect, while Peter and Paul were preaching at Rome, and laying the foundations of the Church. Irenaeus, (ANF, 1.414).
In the same work, Against Heresies, Irenaeus referred to “the twelve-pillared foundation of the Church” (ANF 1.493), obviously referring to the Twelve Apostles (cf. Revelation 21:14). It is evident from the following quotation that Irenaeus believed the Apostles mentioned in 1 Corinthians 12:28 were not ongoing, but rather limited to the first generation of the Church:
Paul then, teaching us where one may find such, says, “God has placed in the Church, first, apostles; secondly, prophets; thirdly, teachers.” Where, therefore, the gifts of the Lord have been placed, there it behoves us to learn the truth, [namely,] from those who possess that succession of the Church which is from the apostles, and among whom exists that which is sound and blameless in conduct, as well as that which is unadulterated and incorrupt in speech. (ANF, 1.498)
Clement of Alexandria also spoke of the foundation of the apostles and prophets. According to Clement, the teaching of the Lord was preserved within the prophets, the Gospel, and the Apostles, i.e., the holy Scriptures. Clement said:
For we have, as the source of teaching, the Lord, both by the prophets, the Gospel, and the blessed apostles. (ANF, 2.551)
Finally, Tertullian also referred to the “apostolic foundation” when he said:
[N]o other teaching will have the right of being received as apostolic than that which is at the present day proclaimed in the churches of apostolic foundation. (ANF, 3.286)
In all of these quotations, it is evident that the Church has an “apostolic foundation” because it is figuratively a building which has as its foundation the Apostles, i.e, the New Testament Scriptures.
Apostles are Succeeded by Bishops and Deacons

The Apostles instituted a plurality of bishops/elders/pastors and deacons that should govern the churches after them. The qualifications for those bishops/elders/pastors and deacons is found in the pastoral epistles (Philippians 1:1; 1 Timothy 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-9). It is exclusively these offices of bishops/elders/pastors and deacons for which qualifications are given for church leadership. But there are no such qualifications for an ongoing Apostolate within the churches. The early Christians affirm this ecclesiology.
In the quote below, Clement of Rome not only notes how the Apostles were sent directly by Christ, but that they also appointed bishops and deacons as their successors.
The apostles have preached the Gospel to us from the Lord Jesus Christ; Jesus Christ [has done so] from God. Christ therefore was sent forth by God, and the apostles by Christ. Both these appointments, then, were made in an orderly way, according to the will of God. Having therefore received their orders, and being fully assured by the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, and established in the word of God, with full assurance of the Holy Ghost, they went forth proclaiming that the kingdom of God was at hand. And thus preaching through countries and cities, they appointed the first-fruits [of their labors], having first proved them by the Spirit, to be bishops and deacons of those who should afterwards believe. (ANF, 1.16)
Not only did Clement acknowledge that the Apostles appointed bishops and deacons, but he also pointed out how those ministers would be succeeded by other approved men. But there is no hint or suggestion of ongoing Apostles. He says:
Our apostles also knew, through our Lord Jesus Christ, and there would be strife on account of the office of the episcopate. For this reason, therefore, inasmuch as they had obtained a perfect fore-knowledge of this, they appointed those [ministers] already mentioned, and afterwards gave instructions, that when these should fall asleep, other approved men should succeed them in their ministry. We are of opinion, therefore, that those appointed by them [i.e., the apostles], or afterwards by other eminent men, with the consent of the whole Church, and who have blamelessly served the flock of Christ in a humble, peaceable, and disinterested spirit, and have for a long time possessed the good opinion of all, cannot be justly dismissed from the ministry. (ANF 1.17)
Rather than the Apostolate being an ongoing office, the presbyters and deacons preside in the place of Apostles, according to Ignatius. In his own words,
Since therefore I have, in the persons before mentioned, beheld the whole multitude of you in faith and love, I exhort you to study to do all things with a divine harmony, while your bishop presides in the place of God, and your presbyters in the place of the assembly of the apostles, along with your deacons, who are most dear to me, and are entrusted with the ministry of Jesus Christ, who was with the Father before the beginning of time, and in the end was revealed. (ANF, 1.61)
Ignatius also wrote:
Be on your guard, therefore, against such persons. And this will be the case with you if you are not puffed up, and continue in intimate union with Jesus Christ our God, and the bishop, and the enactments of the apostles. (ANF 1.68-69)
From the last quotation, we can see that a bishop was present during the time of writing. Rather than submit to living Apostles, the church was to continue in the enactments of the Apostles which were handed down. The Apostles themselves were no longer around but their “enactments” continued to govern the churches. Ignatius also said:
See that you all follow the bishop, even as Jesus Christ does the Father, and the presbytery as you would the apostles; and reverence the deacons, as being the institution of God. (ANF 1.89)
Again, the presbytery now existed in the place of the Apostles. Speaking of the Church government, Ignatius wrote:
You have been the disciples of Paul and Peter; do not lose what was committed to your trust. Keep in remembrance Euodias, your deservedly-blessed pastor, into whose hands the government over you was first entrusted by the apostles. (ANF, 1.111)
Above it is assumed that Apostles were no longer present within Church government. Instead the government of the Church consisted of a pastor who was entrusted by the Apostles.
Similarly, Papias made reference to “the presbyters, the disciples of the apostles” (ANF, 1.154), but he does not mention any more living Apostles as the disciples of the Apostles.
When refuting the Gnostics, Irenaeus wrote:
But, again, when we refer them to that tradition which originates from the apostles, [and] which is preserved by means of the succession of presbyters in the Churches, they object to tradition, saying that they themselves are wiser not merely than the presbyters, but even than the apostles, because they have discovered the unadulterated truth. Irenaeus, (ANF, 1.415).
Irenaeus made the following two important points about the Christian tradition: (1) it originated from the Apostles; and (2) it is preserved by means of succession of presbyters. This presupposes that the Apostolate ceased.
Some passages from Irenaeus are used by Catholic and Orthodox apologists to argue in favor of Apostolic Succession, the belief of uninterrupted transmission of spiritual authority from the Apostles through successive bishops. One of those passages is found ANF 1.415-417. Irenaeus begins:
It is within the power of all, therefore, in every Church, who may wish to see the truth, to contemplate clearly the tradition of the apostles manifested throughout the whole world; and we are in a position to reckon up those who were by the apostles instituted bishops in the Churches, and [to demonstrate] the succession of these men to our own times; those who neither taught nor knew of anything like what these [heretics] rave about. (ANF, 1.415)
It is debated by scholars whether or not Irenaeus was teaching Apostolic Succession as understood by Catholics and Orthodox believers. It is the opinion of this author that Irenaeus was simply providing the evidence of succession of bishops from the Apostles in order to refute the Gnostic heretics who had no succession. For instance, Irenaeus said,
Now all these [heretics] are of much later date than the bishops to whom the apostles committed the Churches; which fact I have in the third book taken all pains to demonstrate. (ANF, 1.547)
Either way, Apostolic Succession does not teach that the Apostles were succeeded by later Apostles. Even the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox doctrine of Apostolic Succession teaches that the Apostles were succeeded by bishops, not Apostles!
Clement of Alexandria also mentioned bishops, presbyters and deacons as those who follow in the footsteps of the Apostles. But Clement did not consider Apostles among the present grades in the church.
Since, according to my opinion, the grades here in the Church, of bishops, presbyters, deacons, are imitations of the angelic glory, and of that economy which, the Scriptures say, awaits those who, following the footsteps of the apostles, have lived in perfection of righteousness according to the Gospel. (ANF, 2.505)
The Apostolic Age
Clement of Alexandria is clear that apostolic era had an end. He wrote,
For the teaching of our Lord at His advent, beginning with Augustus and Tiberius, was completed in the middle of the times of Tiberius. And that of the apostles, embracing the ministry of Paul, ends with Nero. (ANF, 2.554-555)
The fourth century Church historian Eusebius spoke of an “age … succeeding the apostles.” He said:
[I]t is impossible for us to enumerate the names of all that became shepherds or evangelists in the churches throughout the world in the age immediately succeeding the apostles. (The History of the Church, 3.37.4)
What about the Apostles in the churches throughout the world in the age immediately succeeding the Apostles? Apparently there were none. After the Apostles, shepherds/pastors and evangelists were leaders in the churches. These historical observations of Eusebius affirm that Apostles were limited to their own era.
In the same work, Eusebius also spoke of “the apostolic age” (The History of the Church, 3.31.6). Were the Apostles failures? Were the Apostles supposed to pass on a Church structure which was to be governed by Apostles and prophets? I don’t think so.
C. Peter. Wagner also spoke about “the apostolic age.” Wagner claimed that ever since the First Apostolic Age the Church has been without foundational apostles and prophets throughout history until now that the Second Apostolic Age has begun. He claimed:
The traditional Protestant Church has understood apostles and prophets to be offices relegated to the First Apostolic Age but not continuing in churches throughout history. . . . It is fascinating that even though we have had church government backward over the past two centuries according to 1 Corinthians 12:28, we have evangelized so much of the world! Think of what will happen now that church government is getting in proper order. Administrators and teachers are essential for good church health and will function much better once the apostles and prophets are in place. (Apostles Today [Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Publishing Group: 2012], 12)
The claims of C. Peter Wagner not only contradict the traditional understanding of the Protestant Church, but also the historic beliefs and practices of the early Church Fathers, many of whom were personally discipled by the Apostles themselves. Not only did these early Church Fathers say nothing about the restoration of Apostles in the end times, but they also believed the Apostles were confined to the first generation of the Church.  
See Also:
Apostles Today Part 1
Apostles Today Part 2
Apostles Today Part 3
Filed Under: Apostolic Succession, C. Peter Wagner, Early Church, Eastern Orthodoxy, New Apostolic Reformation, Roman Catholicism
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Thailand Cave Rescue: A Gospel Picture for Buddhists? July 10, 2018

One of the many caves in Thailand | Axel Saffran photo via FlickrThailand rescue cave

One of the many caves in Thailand | Axel Saffran photo via Flickr
By Aaron Wilson
The successful rescue of the young soccer team that had been trapped in a flooded Thailand cave involved military personnel, diving teams, and a group of Buddhist monks.
The monks sought to provide comfort for the boys’ relatives while holding vigil at the mouth of the cave—singing songs and offering prayers for the team’s deliverance.
Today, the world celebrates the rescue of all 12 boys and the team’s assistant coach, Ekkapol Chantawong, a Buddhist temple hand who had trained to be a monk. Chantawong, who led the boys into the cave, is also credited with helping them stay alive by teaching them to conserve energy through Buddhist meditation practices.
Such accounts of meditation and prayer vigils associated with the cave rescue may have Christians wondering about the religious landscape of Thailand. As Christians thank God for the physical deliverance of the trapped boys and their coach, here’s what Christ followers need to know about the spiritual state of many who live in Thailand.
Religion in Thailand
Majority Buddhist—According to the CIA’s World Factbook, more than 94 percent of Thailand’s population is Buddhist. Islam makes up 4 percent, while only 1 percent of the population is Christian.
Conservative—More than 90 percent of Thailand subscribes to the Theravada tradition—the most conservative branch of Buddhism that looks to the earliest written texts of Buddha’s teaching as authoritative.
National pride linked to Buddhist faith— “A Thai is expected to be Buddhist. To be other is seen as rejecting one’s nationhood,” says Brian Stiller, global ambassador for the World Evangelical Alliance. “[Christian] evangelism has to buck the rapids of such a profound synthesis of nation and person.”
Freedom of religion—According to the U.S. Department of State, Thailand provides for freedom of religion with “no reports of societal abuses or discrimination based on religious belief or practice.” However, the Thailand government officially limits the number of foreign missionaries allowed in the country.
So what do Buddhists, who make up a sweeping percentage of the Thai population, believe? Here are some of the foundational principles of the religion.
Buddha—Siddhartha Gautama, who is known as “the Buddha,” is believed to have achieved enlightenment by recognizing ultimate truth and suspending all earthly desires. His teachings, formed between the 6th and 4th centuries B.C., frame Buddhism.
The Four Noble Truths—These statements make up the core of Buddha’s teaching. The Noble Truths are summarized by the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention as: 1) Suffering exists, 2) Desire is the cause of suffering, 3) There is freedom from suffering, 4) The Eightfold Path is the way to gain freedom from suffering.
Earning merit—To ultimately escape suffering, Buddhists must earn merit by doing what’s right as revealed in the Eightfold Path, a moral framework that teaches a “middle way” not defined by the extremes of sensual pleasure or self-mortification.
Cycle of rebirth—Buddhists believe individuals’ merits (or state of karma) will determine their existence in the next life. Rebirth continues until one achieves nirvana, an eternal state of nothingness.
No personal God—Buddhists do not believe in a personal God. Rather, they focus on private spiritual development. Prayers are not so much about conversing with a deity but about achieving individual enlightenment.
A Picture of Deliverance
One of the most significant differences between Buddhism and Christianity is what each religion teaches is wrong with the world. For Buddhists, mankind’s ultimate problem is suffering brought on by desire. Christians acknowledge the problem of suffering but see it as a result of sin.
While Buddhists attempt to escape suffering by earning sufficient merit, Christians trust in someone outside of themselves, Jesus, for salvation.
In this way, the gripping rescue story in Thailand in which 13 helpless people relied on others to save them can provide a gospel picture for Christian missionaries in Thailand to reference.
Like humans imprisoned in sin, the Thai boys trapped in the cave were utterly incapable of saving themselves. Led astray and hemmed in by their own actions, they were totally dependent on someone else entering their perilous situation to deliver them—much as Christ needed to enter into humanity to save sinners (Philippians 2:6-8).
As medical personnel evaluate and care for the rescued boys and their coach, Christians can pray for the soccer team’s physical and mental recovery. Christians can also pray for the family of the diver who lost his life in the rescue attempts.
But in addition to lifting up these important needs, Christians can also use this rescue as a reminder to pray for Buddhists in Thailand—that they might be captivated by the good news of an even greater salvation story.
Related:
Meditation Should Not be Taboo for Christians
What Religious Group Fears Death the Most?
AARON WILSON (@AaronBWilson26) is associate editor of Facts & Trends.

Have The Thai Soccer Boys Been Rescued? Details Thai Soccer Boys Trapped Flooded Cave Thailand

 

Family Separation Not Trump Administration’s Fault ~ July 09, 2018

Family Separation Not Trump Administration’s Fault
July 09 2018

The furor over the family separation issue – children not being kept with their parents who have been detained for illegally entering the country – is odd. This is not some new phenomenon suddenly imposed by the Trump administration. It happened during the Obama, Bush, and Clinton administrations, too.
Where did the policy come from? In 1997, then-Attorney General Janet Reno settled a lawsuit, Flores v. Reno, filed in California challenging the Clinton administration’s detention of juvenile migrants taken into custody by the INS. In the settlement, the government agreed that it could detain unaccompanied minors for only 20 days before releasing them to the Department of Health and Human Services for placement either in foster care or with their parents, close relatives, or a legal guardian. A controversial decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit extended this 20-day limit to juveniles who illegally cross the border with their parents.
So, the reason that children can’t stay with their parents who are being prosecuted under federal immigration law is because of a court’s misinterpretation of a settlement agreed to by the Clinton administration – not the Trump administration.
Keep in mind that those parents would be instantly reunited with their families if they did the right thing – volunteered to return to their native country. By breaking the law and bypassing our legal immigration process, those parents are responsible for what is happening to their children.
President Trump signed an executive order on June 20 directing that families who enter the country illegally be kept together “to the extent permitted by law.” This is an obvious reference to the Flores settlement and the limits it places on the government. But at least Trump is trying to do something about that. The executive order directs the attorney general to go to the California court with jurisdiction over the Flores case and ask the court to modify the settlement agreement to allow the government to keep families together while the parents are detained.
The current outrage over this was generated by a recent Associated Press story about 2,000 children separated from their parents. The hypocrisy of the critics and protesters is demonstrated by their lack of concern for the much larger number of children who are placed in foster care when their parents are incarcerated. We don’t fail to arrest, prosecute and jail Americans who commit crimes because they have children.
In 2016 alone, according to a report by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 20,939 children were placed in foster care because their parents were incarcerated. In 2015, the number was 21,006. So, the number of American kids who are placed in foster care because their parents are incarcerated is exponentially larger than the number of children who are also separated from the parents because their parents broke federal immigration law.
Another reason for the separation problem is immigrants who enter the county illegally making false asylum claims to avoid being deported. If an immigrant follows the law by presenting himself at a port of entry with his family and claiming asylum, then his family will stay together. It is when immigrants who are caught illegally crossing the border then claim asylum that they risk being prosecuted for illegal entry. They are then separated from their children because of the Clinton-era settlement.
Many immigrants claiming asylum pass through countries such as Mexico with their own generous asylum laws. If an immigrant doesn’t claim asylum before he gets to the U.S., that is a clear indication that he is coming here for economic reasons, not because he has a valid asylum claim.
No one wants to see families separated – and that includes the families of immigrants and of American citizens. But one of the consequences of breaking the law is that you may be separated from your children when you go to prison. Moreover, they may end up in foster care because of your misdeeds. That applies whether you are committing a domestic crime such as assault or robbery or violating federal immigration law by illegally crossing – or recrossing – our border.
Reported by: Detroit News & The Heritage Foundation (Hans A. von Spakovsky)
Hans A. von Spakovsky is a senior legal fellow at The Heritage Foundation. He is the co-author of “Who’s Counting? How Fraudsters and Bureaucrats Put Your Vote at Risk” and “Obama’s Enforcer: Eric Holder’s Justice Department.”

By Prophecy in the News| July 9th, 2018|Tags: Bush, Clinton administration, Family Separation, General Janet Reno, Illegal Immigrants, illegal immigration, Obama, Trump Administration

Ocasio-Cortez & The New Breed Of Far Left Politicians

There is a huge paradigm shift going on within the Democratic Party.  The desire of the extreme left is basically to hijack the United States Constitution (Remember that President Barack Obama and other progressives called it a fluid or living document) and replace it with sharia law.  This party has radical voices who aim to lead the Democrats farther to the left, and at this point the party itself does not know where it will end up.  Socialists and Communists are now pushing the envelope within their ranks.  Elections have been won in New York by extreme leftists in the Democratic Party.  There is a strong movement within the DNC to abolish ICE.  As  President Donald Trump says:  “Without ICE (the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement), you will not be safe when you leave your home.”  Without ICE, MS13 murderous gang members, radical Islamic Jihadists and a plethora of other undesirables will be coming to a theater near you.  Make no mistake, anarchy is in their crosshairs as the leftists within the Democrat Party take aim.  Ever since Donald J. Trump was elected president, they have proven time and again, that they will not accept “no” for an answer.  They will not submit to a vote that runs counter to their agenda.  This mindset is the polar opposite of American jurisprudence and politics.  Pray for revival in America.  All Because Of Him, Pastor Steve  <><

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ARTICLE
Ocasio-Cortez & The New Breed Of Far Left Politicians

By Meira Svirsky/Clarion Project July 03, 2018

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) may be downplaying the upset victory of a young socialist over incumbent Joe Crowley in the Democratic primary for New York’s 14 Congressional District, but that is most likely a fig leaf.

Crowley, who has been a Congressman since 1999, was touted as the next speaker of the House (if the Democrats gain the majority in midterm elections).

His defeat by Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, 28, sent shock waves through the Democratic establishment.

But it shouldn’t have. Without the help of the super delegates, Bernie Sanders, with his Far Left agenda, may have garnered the Democratic nomination.

To the press, Pelosi explained away Ocasio-Cortez’s victory as an anomaly. “The fact that in a very progressive district in New York, it went more progressive — and (incumbent Rep.) Joe Crowley is a progressive — but to the left of Joe Crowley is about that district,” she rambled. “It is not to be viewed as something that stands for everything else.”

Ocasio-Cortez had another take, “Working-class Americans want a clear champion, and there is nothing radical about moral clarity in 2018.”

So, let’s talk about Ocasio-Cortez’ “moral clarity” and the so-called “progressive” movement for a moment.

Ocasio-Cortez ran on an anti-capitalist, socialist platform calling for Medicare for everyone and a federal jobs guarantee (employment by the government for all those unable to get jobs). Her “progressive” ideas included the abolition of ICE (the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement). I am imaging this means an open border policy from any country, regardless of security risks.

She recently applauded Hamas terrorists who called for the murder of Israeli civilians while violently trying to break through the border as “engaging in political expression.”

Their imaginative kite and condom bombs lobbed onto Israeli farmland managed to cause millions of dollars of damage to crops and the environment, yet she said she was “compelled on moral grounds” to speak out in their favor, comparing the “protesters” to West Virginia teachers on strike.

“I think I was primarily compelled on moral grounds, because I could only imagine if 60 people were shot and killed in Ferguson or if 60 people were shot and killed in the West Virginia teacher strikes,” Ocasio-Cortez said.

“The idea that we’re not supposed to talk about people dying when they are engaging in political expression just really moved me, and running for office, seeing like the silence around this issue, has been a little interesting to me.”

Ocasio-Cortez is part of a new breed of Far Left politicians who consider themselves “progressive,” i.e. on the moral high ground. They have made intersectional alliances with all the so-called “victims” of society.

In one of the most brilliant stunts of political manipulation pulled off by those whose goal it is to replace the Constitution with sharia law, Islamists have managed to join that group (and it seems not to matter to progressives how violent or bigoted they are).

It is certainly the irony of our times.

The de-evolution of the Democratic party should be a concern to all of us, and not just the Pelosis of the country, who will soon enough be fighting for their own seats in Congress.

When the winning votes go to those espousing or supporting extremist ideology – including radical Islam – in the name of “progress,” we have a big problem.

Originally published at Clarion Project – reposted with permission

Read more at http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/article.cfm?recent_news_id=2368#epJuBxJrfCr2StHY.99

 

Pray For Revival In America!

The Accurate Story Behind The Star Spangled Banner

Key The Following Link:

https://t.e2ma.net/click/3lv9w/bwkapq/rgfg3f

Prayers & Presidents

Inspiring Faith from Leaders
of the Past

“Went to church and fasted all day.”
GEORGE WASHINGTON
Diary Entry, June 1, 1774

This was the day British blockaded Boston’s harbor from George Washington’s orders for troops to attend divine services to Abraham Lincoln’s annual day of thanksgiving, to Harry S Truman’s annual day of prayer. America’s leaders of the past have a tradition of faith, especially in times of crises! There is a chapter on every President of the past, from George Washington through George W. Bush, with excerpts from Proclamations, Addresses to Congress, Executive Orders, Personal Correspondence and Memoirs.
“America needs God more than God needs America.
If we ever forget that we are One Nation Under God,
then we will be a Nation gone under.”
A great source of inspiration for any student of history, you will be uplifted and challenged by reading…

Prayers & Presidents
Inspiring Faith from Leaders of the Past

This book can be ordered from Prophecy in the News

Eschatology 35 ~ The Twentieth Sign Of Christ’s Soon Return- The Spread Of The Gospel

The #1 Most Overlooked Prophetic Sign-  The Spread Of The Gospel

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ARTICLE
The #1 Most Overlooked Prophetic Sign
By Britt Gillette/EndTimesBibleProphecy May 17, 2018
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Can we know when Jesus is coming back? No. No one knows the day or the hour of His return (Mark 13:32). However, we can know the general season of His return. Why do I say this? Because Jesus told us so. He said certain signs will indicate His return is near.

And today, we see them. Those signs include (but are not limited to): the rebirth of Israel as a nation (Jeremiah 23:7-8)… The Jewish people in control of Jerusalem (Luke 21:24-28)… A marked increase in travel and knowledge (Daniel 12:4)… and many more.

Centuries ago, Jesus and the prophets pointed to dozens of signs just like these. Jesus said when you see them, you should “look up, because your salvation draws near” (Luke 21:28). But I want to focus on just one of those signs. It’s a sign so obvious, people take it for granted.

It may even be the most important sign. Yet, while it’s in full view of every man, woman, and child on earth, most people still ignore it. Hard to believe isn’t it? But it’s true. One of the foremost signs of the Second Coming is either ignored or dismissed by almost everyone in the world.

The Most Overlooked Sign of the Second Coming

So what is this sign? It’s the Gospel. That’s right. The spread of the Gospel is the most overlooked sign of the Second Coming. When Jesus was asked, “When will the end come? And what will be the signs of your coming?” He said, “the Good News will be preached to the whole world so all nations will hear it, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14). Our generation is on the verge of fulfilling this sign.

Right now, the Gospel is being preached in every nation on earth. It’s an unmistakable sign of the times in which we live. Yet, it’s the #1 most overlooked sign. The world, and even many Christians, take it for granted.

Those people say, “What’s the big deal? Why wouldn’t the Gospel spread across the world? We live in an age of satellite TV, the Internet, and global travel.” True. Technology partially explains the recent explosion of the Gospel. Print books, ebooks, websites, television, radio, and more take the Gospel to millions on a daily basis. But is technology solely responsible? No. Technology alone will not make a message go global.

So what will? The power of the message. God is the one behind the spread of the Gospel. Don’t doubt it. As Gamaliel observed, “If the Gospel is not from God, it will soon fade away. But if the Gospel is from God, no one will be able to stop it” (Acts 5:38-39).

How many others have tried to spread a different message and failed? The Gospel has spread because it’s the Word of God. The Bible says the Word of God always produces fruit. It will accomplish all God wants it to and prosper everywhere He sends it (Isaiah 55:11). No one should take this for granted. After all, the global spread of the Gospel is nothing less than a miracle.

Think about it. A first century carpenter on the outskirts of the Roman Empire said His message would be proclaimed to the ends of the earth. He said “the whole world” and “all nations” will hear it. That’s a bold claim. Remember, Jesus only had a few followers at the time. He had no great wealth. He didn’t hold a high or important government position.

He wasn’t a conquering hero. He was a poor wandering preacher in an all but forgotten province of the mighty Roman Empire. He lived in a time when TV, radio, the Internet, and the printing press did not yet exist. Nothing indicated His name and message would spread to all nations. Yet, here we are today, where the name of Jesus is known throughout the world.

Do we really grasp the significance of this? When Jesus made this bold claim, His followers didn’t even understand what “the whole world” was. Perhaps they had heard of India and China, but Japan? Australia? North and South America?

All these places were unknown to the disciples. No one at the time knew how large the world was or even how many nations existed. The idea of reaching them all was absurd. Yet Jesus knew. As God in the flesh, He knew how big the world was. And He said the global spread of the Gospel would be a sign of His return.

The Spread of the Gospel

Following the crucifixion, the Gospel spread throughout Israel. But it took several decades to reach the rest of the Roman Empire. For the first 1,000 years of Christianity, the Gospel rarely left western Europe and the Mediterranean region. So for fifteen centuries, no Christian could point to this sign of the Second Coming.

Many honored the Lord’s command to “go into all nations and make disciples” (Matthew 28:19), and they tried to fulfill this sign in their time. But only in recent years could anyone claim this sign is nearing fulfillment.

Today, the Gospel circles the globe on a daily basis. Missionaries take it to the most remote corners of the world. Radio and television transmit the Word of God into nations hostile to Christianity, and the Internet brings the Gospel to everyone with an electronic device. Yet, despite all this, the spread of the Gospel goes largely unnoticed. Jesus said this would be a sign of His return.

He said in the days of Noah, people enjoyed banquets and parties and weddings right up to the time Noah entered his boat and the flood came and destroyed them all (Luke 17:26-30). The people of Noah’s day did not believe a flood was coming. But the flood did come, and so will Jesus.

Remember, Jesus said, “The Gospel will be preached to all nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14). He didn’t say, “The Gospel will be preached to all nations, and then I’ll come 50 years or 100 years or 1,000 years later.” No. He said, “And then the end will come.” Our generation is on the verge of seeing the Gospel preached to all the nations. That means Jesus is right at the door. He’s coming soon!

Britt Gillette is author of the ebook Coming to Jesus as well as the books Signs of the Second Coming and Racing Toward Armageddon.

Read more at http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/article.cfm?recent_news_id=2270#J4wM3Q0iJJYXjDVL.99

The Sword Of The Lord ~ Dr. Shelton Smith, Editor ~ May 18, 2018

Judges 7:20 King James Version (KJV)
And the three companies blew the trumpets, and brake the pitchers, and held the lamps in their left hands, and the trumpets in their right hands to blow withal: and they cried, The sword of the Lord, and of Gideon.

An Independent Christian Publication, Standing for the Verbal Inspiration of the Bible, the Deity of Christ, His Blood Atonement, Salvation by Faith, New Testament Soul Winning and the Premillennial Return of Christ; Opposing Modernism (Liberalism), Worldliness and Formalism.

The Amen Corner

Sometimes preachers are ashamed to weep; more often our hearts are too cold to weep over sinners.  Not so with Paul, who said,  “I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears”  (Acts 20:31).  He put the “go” in soul winning; but best of all, he went with tears.  -John R. Rice

Something about us religious humans makes us want to add to the Gospel.  We want to help God with our salvation.  If we can’t help Him save us, we want to help keep ourselves saved.   -Curtis Hutson

I saw beside a copy of Who’s Who a new volume :Who Was Who!  How quickly we pass from hero to zero!  “For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass”  (I Peter 1:24).  -Vance Havner

There is a rank due to the United States among nations which will be withheld, if not absolutely lost, by the reputation of weakness.  If we desire to avoid insult, we must be able to repel it; if we desire to secure peace, one of the most powerful instruments of our rising prosperity, it must be known that we are at all times ready for war.   -George Washington

It is far better to prepare for what lies before us than to congratulate ourselves upon that which is already accomplished.  Great as have been the blessings with which Almighty God has favored us, we are longing and looking for larger displays of His goodness.   -Charles Spurgeon

It is scarcely possible in most places to get anyone to attend a meeting where the only attraction is God.  A. W. Tozer

All of us will die.  I don’t relish the idea, but I cannot reverse the fact.  But when I die and by body is planted in the City of the Dead, I have assurance that one day I will come forth out of that grave.  -Harold Sightler

Few people need voice lessons to sing their own praise.  -E. C. McKenzie

In the days of Christ, men learned first to believe in His Person and then in His Word; [now] we learn first to believe in His Word and then in His Person.  -Alfred Eldersheim

An atheist is a man who looks through a telescope and tries to explain what he can’t see.  -O. A. Battista

“I’d give the world to be as happy as you are,” said one to a Christian.  The reply:  “That’s what it cost me.”

***************************

Sunshine for Seniors

Love Is (From the Children’s Perspective)

When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn’t bend over and paint her toenails anymore, so my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too.  That’s love.  -Rebecca, age eight

Love is when you go out to eat and give somebody most of your French fries without making them give you any of theirs.  -Chrissy, age six

Love is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy and she takes a sip before giving it to him to make sure the taste is okay.  -Danny, age seven

If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend whom you hate.  -Nikka, age six

When you tell someone something bad about yourself and you’re scared they won’t love you anymore but then you get surprised because not only do they still love you, but they love you even more.  -Matthew, age seven

There are two kinds of love: our love [and] God’s love.  But God makes both kinds of them.  -Jenny, age four

During my piano recital I was on a stage and scared.  I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling.  He was the only one doing that.  I wasn’t scared anymore.  -Cindy, age eight

Love is when Mommy gives Daddy the best piece of chicken.  -Elaine, age five

I know my older sister loves me because she gives me all her old clothes and has to go out and buy new ones.        -Lauren

I let my big sister pick on me because my mom says she only picks on me because she loves me.  So I pick on my baby sister because I love her.  -Bethany, age four

You really shouldn’t say “I love you” unless you mean it.  But if you mean it, you should say it a lot.  People forget.  -Jessica, age eight

Editor’s Comments:  These kids had to learn this good stuff somewhere.  Oh, that’s right; they have parents and grandparents who “love” them.  Amen!