letsloveothers

Love one another as Jesus has loved us.

In the first installment of Egypt’s Exodus I put forth the idea: Chaos— confusion is the new normal. Learn to anticipate so you can adaptKeep your eyes focused on the reward— Christ’s return and eternal reign. In the second installment I explored the birth pains of civil unrest and ineffective, unrighteous problem solving strategies. Persecution, martyrdom and natural disasters were the subjects of the third installment.

This chaos— confusion I believe is a sign of the birth pains that Jesus said would precede His return. Jesus warns us in Matthew 24 and Mark 13 that devastation will envelope the earth before His return. War, famine, economic upheaval, plagues, natural disasters, and animal attacks will increase in frequency and intensity. Although there will be times of peace— rest, the time between catastrophic events will diminish over time.

Isaiah 19—a messianic chapter of Egypt’s birth pains prior to Christ’s return, outlines both Papa’s judgment and salvation of Egypt. Although a prophecy for the country of Egypt, it has prophetic implications for the entire world.

Today I’ll dissect verses 18-25.

CHRIST DEFEATS THE ANTICHRIST

In that day five of Egypt’s cities will follow the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. They will even begin to speak Hebrew, the language of Canaan. One of these cities will be Heliopolis, the City of the Sun.

 In that day there will be an altar to the Lord in the heart of Egypt, and there will be a monument to the Lord at its border. It will be a sign and a witness that the Lord of Heaven’s Armies is worshiped in the land of Egypt. 

When the people cry to the Lord for help against those who oppress them, He will send them a savior who will rescue them. The Lord will make Himself known to the Egyptians. Yes, they will know the Lord and will give their sacrifices and offerings to Him. They will make a vow to the Lord and will keep it. The Lord will strike Egypt, and then He will bring healing. The Egyptians will turn to the Lord, and He will listen to their pleas and heal them.

In that day Egypt and Assyria will be connected by a highway. The Egyptians and Assyrians will move freely between their lands, and they will both worship God. In that day Israel will be the third, along with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing in the midst of the earth. For the Lord of Heaven’s Armies will say, “Blessed be Egypt, my people. Blessed be Assyria, the land I have made. Blessed be Israel, my special possession!” (Verses 18-25)

Yes, prior to Christ’s return there will be a remnant of Egyptians who worship Jesus wholeheartedly. When Christ returns He will wage war and defeat the antichrist’s army. Rescuing not only Egypt but also Jordan and Israel. 

The apostle John witnessed and described that glorious day in the book of Revelation.

I looked up and saw that heaven had opened. Suddenly, a white horse appeared. Its rider is called Faithful and True, and with righteousness He exercises judgment and wages war. His eyes burn like a flaming fire, and on His head are many crowns. His name was written before the creation of the world, and no one knew it except He Himself. 

He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name He was known by is The Word of God. The armies of heaven, outfitted in fine linen, white and pure, were following behind Him on white steeds. From His mouth darts a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. He will rule over them with a scepter made of iron. He will trample the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God, the All Powerful. There on His robe and on His thigh was written His name: King of kings and Lord of lords.

Then I looked up and saw a messenger standing in the sun. With a loud voice, he called to all the birds that fly through mid-heaven.

Come. Gather for the great feast God is preparing for you. Where you will feast on the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of the rich and powerful, the flesh of horses and their riders— all flesh— both free and slave, both small and great.”

I looked down, and I saw the beast I had seen earlier, and the kings of the earth with their armies gathered together to wage war against the One riding the white horse and His heavenly army. The beast was soon captured along with the false prophet. The earth-beast I had seen earlier who performed signs to deceive those who had agreed to receive the mark of the beast, and those who worshiped its detestable image. Both of them were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulfur. All who remained met death at the blade of the sword that proceeded from the mouth of the One riding on the white horse. All the birds feasted fully on their flesh. Revelation 19:11-21

Maranatha— come our Lord!

In the first installment of Egypt’s Exodus I put forth the idea: Chaos— confusion is the new normal. Learn to anticipate so you can adaptKeep your eyes focused on the reward— Christ’s return and eternal reign. In the second installment I explored the birth pains of civil unrest and ineffective, unrighteous problem solving strategies.

This chaos— confusion I believe is a sign of the birth pains that Jesus said would precede His return. Jesus warns us in Matthew 24 and Mark 13 that devastation will envelope the earth before His return. War, famine, economic upheaval, plagues, natural disasters, and animal attacks will increase in frequency and intensity. Although there will be times of peace— rest, the time between catastrophic events will diminish over time.

Isaiah 19—a messianic chapter of Egypt’s birth pains prior to Christ’s return, outlines both Papa’s judgment and salvation of Egypt. Although a prophecy for the country of Egypt, it has prophetic implications for the entire world.

Today I’ll dissect verses 4-10.

PERSECUTION AND MARTRYDOM

“I will hand Egypt over to a hard, cruel master. A fierce king will rule them,” says the Lord, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. (Verse 4)

I believe this fierce king is the antichrist— the antithesis of Christ. Although he won’t conquer and rule all nations, his evil, cruelty and demonic power will permeate all nations. 

The beast— the antichrist will shout insults against God, blaspheming His name, cursing His dwelling and those who live in heaven. Also it received permission to declare war against the saints and conquer them. Not a single nation, people, language or ethnicity could escape its dominion. The inhabitants of the earth will worship it—  that is, all those whose names have not been recorded before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who was slaughtered.

Let the person who is able to hear, listen carefully. If someone is destined for captivity, a captive he will be. If someone is destined to die by the sword, by the sword he will die. The endurance and faithfulness of the saints will be tested here. Revelation 13:6-10

Yes, even Papa’s elect— His disciples will be martyred. The tribulation will be unparalleled— hardships of a magnitude that has not been seen since creation and that will not be seen again. Indeed the Lord God your merciful judge will cut this time of trial short, and this will be done for the benefit of the elect that some might indeed be saved. For no one could survive the depravity for very long. Matthew 24:21-22

NATURAL DISASTERS

The waters of the Nile will fail to rise and flood the fields. The riverbed will be parched and dry. The canals of the Nile will dry up, and the streams of Egypt will stink with rotting reeds and rushes. All the greenery along the riverbank and all the crops along the river will dry up and blow away.

The fishermen will lament for lack of work. Those who cast hooks into the Nile will groan, and those who use nets will lose heart. There will be no flax for the harvesters, no thread for the weavers. They will be in despair, and all the workers will be sick at heart.(Verses 5-10)

Weather related disasters have a ripple effect on all aspects of life. “At least 207 natural disasters were recorded globally in the first six months of 2020 — this is above the 21st century average (2000-2019) of 185 disasters. The number of events exceeded average in all regions except the Americas.

There was an increase of at least 27 per cent in natural disasters recorded during the same time in 2019. Between January and June 2019, at least 163 natural disasters were recorded.” (More than 200 natural disasters across world in 1st half of 2020)

“Environmental pressures continue to negatively impact peace. The IEP’s Ecological Threat Register indicates that 27 per cent of countries will face catastrophic water stress and 22 per cent catastrophic food stress by 2050.

The report also indicates that there were an estimated 2.26 billion people living in areas with high or very high exposure to climate hazards in 2019, with 1.24 billion of these people already living in countries with low levels of peace. By 2050 climate change is expected to create up to 143 million migrants globally, specifically in sub-Saharan Africa (86m), South Asia (40m) and Latin America (17m).” (Global Peace Index: Global Peacefulness Falls With Sustained Rise in Civil Unrest in the Last Decade and Is Set to Worsen as Economic Impact of COVID-19 Takes Hold)

Now I’m sure of this. The sufferings we endure now are not even worth comparing to the glory that is coming and will be revealed in us. For all of creation is waiting, yearning for the time when the children of God will be revealed.

You see, all of creation has collapsed into emptiness, not by its own choosing but by God’s. He placed within it a deep and abiding hope that creation would one day be liberated from its slavery to corruption and experience the glorious freedom of the children of God. For we know that all creation groans in unison with birthing pains up until now.

There is more. It’s not just creation. All of us are groaning together too. Though we have already tasted the first fruits of the Spirit. We are longing for the total redemption of our bodies that comes when our adoption as children of God is complete. For we have been saved in this hope and for this future.

But hope does not involve what we already have or see. For who goes around hoping for what he already has? But if we wait expectantly for things we have never seen, then we hope with true perseverance and eager anticipationRomans 8:18-25

TO BE CONTINUED…

In the first installment of Egypt’s Exodus I put forth the idea: Chaos— confusion is the new normal. Learn to anticipate so you can adaptKeep your eyes focused on the reward— Christ’s return and eternal reign.

This chaos— confusion I believe is a sign of the birth pains that Jesus said would precede His return. Jesus warns us in Matthew 24 and Mark 13 that devastation will envelope the earth before His return. War, famine, economic upheaval, plagues, natural disasters, and animal attacks will increase in frequency and intensity. Although there will be times of peace— rest, the time between catastrophic events will diminish over time.

Isaiah 19—a messianic chapter of Egypt’s birth pains prior to Christ’s return, outlines both Papa’s judgment and salvation of Egypt. Although a prophecy for the country of Egypt, it has prophetic implications for the entire world.

Today I’ll dissect verses 2, 3 and 11-17.

CIVIL UNREST

I will make Egyptian fight against Egyptian— brother against brother, neighbor against neighbor, city against city, province against province. (Verse 2)

“Rising civil unrest is emerging as a key future risk factor, with riots, general strikes and anti-government demonstrations increasing substantially since 2011. At least 58% of GPI countries experienced violent protests in 2019, notably in Chile and Hong Kong, as citizens protested a range of issues including economic inequality, police brutality, political leadership and rising prices for key resources. This reflects a longer-term trend, with riots around the world increasing by 282% in the last decade, while general strikes are up by 821%” Global Peace Index: Global Peacefulness Falls With Sustained Rise in Civil Unrest in the Last Decade and Is Set to Worsen as Economic Impact of COVID-19 Takes Hold

Jesus in His Olivet Discourse warned the disciples that prior to His return, “Brother will betray brother to be put to death. Father will hand over his child. Children will rise up and take a stand against parents and have them put to death.

You will be hated by everyone because of your association with My name. But the one who patiently perseveres, empowered by the Holy Spirit and endures to the end. He will be saved.” Mark 13:12-13 

INEFFECTIVE, UNRIGHTEOUS PROBLEM SOLVING STRATIGIES

The Egyptians will lose heart, and I will confuse their plans.They will plead with their idols for wisdom and call on spirits, mediums and those who consult the spirits of the dead. (Verse 3)

What fools are the officials of Zoan! Their best counsel to the king of Egypt is stupid and wrong. Will they still boast to Pharaoh of their wisdom? Will they dare brag about all their wise ancestors?

Where are your wise counselors, Pharaoh? Let them tell you what God plans. What the Lord of Heaven’s Armies is going to do to Egypt.

The officials of Zoan are fools, and the officials of Memphis are deluded. The leaders of the people have led Egypt astray.

The Lord has sent a spirit of foolishness on them, so all their suggestions are wrong. They cause Egypt to stagger like a drunk in his vomit. There is nothing Egypt can do. All are helpless— the head and the tail, the noble palm branch and the lowly reed.

In that day the Egyptians will be as weak as women. They will cower in fear beneath the upraised fist of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. Just to speak the name of Israel will terrorize them, for the Lord of Heaven’s Armies has laid out his plans against them.(Verses 11-17)

Many arrogantly believe human intellect alone is capable of solving the current problems that have reared their ugly heads. This arrogance fails to understand that for those who are living according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, which gratify the body. But those who are living according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit— His will and purpose.

Now the mind of the flesh is death, both now and forever because it pursues sin. But the mind of the Spirit is life and peace— the spiritual well-being that comes from walking with God both now and forever. The mind of the flesh with its sinful pursuits is actively hostile to God. It does not submit itself to God’s law, since it cannot. Those who are in the flesh living a life that caters to sinful appetites and impulses cannot please God. Romans 8:5-8

For this reason the wrath of God is breaking through from heaven. Opposing all manifestations of ungodliness and wickedness by the people who do wrong to keep God’s truth in check. These people are not ignorant about what can be known of God, because He has shown it to them with great clarity.

From the beginning, creation in its magnificence enlightens us to His nature. Creation itself makes His undying power and divine identity clear. Even though they are invisible. It voids the excuses and ignorant claims of these people. Despite the fact that they knew the one true God, they have failed to show the love, the honor, and appreciation due to the One who created them! Instead, their lives are consumed by vain thoughts that poison their foolish hearts.

They claim to be wise, but they have been exposed as fools, frauds and con artists. Only a fool would trade the splendor and beauty of the immortal God to worship images of the common man or woman, bird or reptile or the next beast that tromps along. So God gave them just what their lustful hearts desired. Romans 1:18-24

TO BE CONTINUED…

Chaos is not my friend! It…

Hijacks my peace. 

Muddies my life. 

Barges into my routines.

All of which isn’t good for my physical or emotional well-being. 

I know I’m losing the battle when I go into hyper-organizational mode. Although an anemic attempt to control my life and environment, it momentarily brings relief. It’s not effective long term because it creates something even more insidious— perfectionism.

Over the past few days the battle was raging, and nothing I did was working.

No relief from organizing. 

No relief from fall decorating.

No relief from praying.

No relief from reading and studying Papa’s word.

NO! RELIEF! PERIOD!

So what did I do?

Increased my time praying and studying Papa’s word.

The result?

A paradigm shift was birthed.

Chaos— confusion is the new normal. Learn to anticipate so you can adaptKeep your eyes focused on the reward— Christ’s return and eternal reign.

We are living in times when unpredictability is the word of the day. What was once considered earthquake proof is being shaken into pieces so small that putting them back together is impossible. 

Problem solving has entered unchartered waters. Adrift in a sea of chaos, we can no longer rely upon past strategies to solve the current tsunami of economic, political and social problems washing over our lives. 

In the search for answers, many have blindly wandered into quicksand. Slowly sinking in a quagmire of knowledge that’s no longer applicable. 

This chaos— confusion I believe is a sign of the birth pains that Jesus said would precede His return. Jesus warns us in Matthew 24 and Mark 13 that devastation will envelope the earth before His return. War, famine, economic upheaval, plagues, natural disasters, and animal attacks will increase in frequency and intensity. Although there will be times of peace— rest, the time between catastrophic events will diminish over time.

Isaiah 19—a messianic chapter of Egypt’s birth pains prior to Christ’s return, outlines both Papa’s judgment and salvation of Egypt. Although a prophecy for the country of Egypt, it has prophetic implications for the entire world.

For almost 30 centuries ancient Egypt was the primadonna of the Mediterranean world. Her art, architecture and religious traditions were unequaled. Conquests by Persia, Greece and Rome initiated the demise of Egypt’s grandeur and reign. Cumulating in the seventh century when she was conquered by the Arabs, and Islam was introduced.

Isaiah 19

IDOLS

Look! The Lord is advancing against Egypt, riding on a swift cloud. The idols of Egypt tremble. The hearts of the Egyptians melt with fear. (Verse 1)

What’s an idol? Anything or anyone that you…

Love more than Papa. 

Want more than Papa. 

Desire more than Papa.

Treasure more than Papa.

Enjoy more than Papa. 

Who do you trust to supply all your needs— the idols of this world or Papa? 

So put to death and deprive of power the evil longings of your earthly body with its sensual, self-centered instincts, immorality, impurity, sinful passion, evil desire and greed. Which is a kind of idolatry because it replaces your devotion to God.

Because of these sinful things the divine wrath of God is coming on the sons of disobedience. Those who fail to listen and who routinely and obstinately disregard God’s precepts.

These sinful things you also once walked when you were habitually living in them without the knowledge of Christ. But now rid yourselves completely of all these things: anger, rage, malice, slander and obscene (abusive, filthy, vulgar) language from your mouth. Do not lie to one another. For you have stripped off the old self with its evil practices and have put on the new spiritual self who is being continually renewed in true knowledge in the image of Him who created the new self. Colossians 3:5-10

TO BE CONTINUED…

Say the word “family” and a myriad of images comes to mind, a collage of both personal and fabricated images. Images that nonetheless influence thoughts, feelings and beliefs— individually and collectively.

Sadly, no one exits childhood without trauma, some more than others. For many, parents are the instigators of this trauma. Inflicting physical and psychological pain.

My father was a selfish, abusive, alcoholic. Nothing I accomplished measured up to his unrealistic expectations of perfection. Never did I hear him say, “I love you or great job.” 

I learned early in life to keep secrets. To do whatever it took to remain invisible. Vulnerability was taboo. Dependency upon others was foolishness. 

One of the problems with relational invisibility is that my relationships were superficial, devoid of intimacy and trust. Nevertheless, nothing quieted the deep seeded longing I had for relationships in which I could be myself without fear of rejection. 

Overtime this superficiality and distrust took a toll. Despondent and desperate I resigned myself to living on the outside, alone— even in a crowd.

Thankfully, that voice has been silenced! My heavenly Father— Papa rescued me. Enveloping me in His healing love. Reassuring me I was His beloved. 

Overtime those childhood scars healed. No longer wrecking havoc in my life because I chose to believe Papa when He tells me:

“For I know the plans and thoughts that I have for you,” says the Lord, “plans for peace and well-being and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11

Knowing You shaped me, inside and out. You knitted me together in my mother’s womb long before I took my first breath.

I will offer You my grateful heart. For I am Your unique creation, filled with wonder and awe. You have approached even the smallest details with excellence. Your works are wonderful. I carry this knowledge deep within my soul. Psalm 139:13-14

Grateful for the incredible quality of love the Father has shown to us. That we would be permitted to be named and called and counted the children of God! 1 John 3:1

So trust Papa when He tells you.

YOU ARE HIS UNIQUE CREATION!

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