For The Week Of October 03, 2006
**TABLE OF CONTENTS**
This Week’s 66/40 Radio Broadcast
Articles and Commentary
- The Fall Feasts: Succoth – (Read)
- Europe Prepares for Expansion – (Read)
- Surveying the Battlefield – (Read)
Important News Headlines
Memory Verse of the Week
**THIS WEEK’S 66/40 RADIO BROADCAST**
Luke 23 – 24
”Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them. nd they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre. And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus.” This week we reach the wonderful conclusion of the Gospel of Luke.
The Gospel according to ‘the Beloved Physician’ is a most readable and complete account of the life of Jesus, and evidences the truly human nature of Christ.
Europa Rising – DVD by Chuck Missler
Who Conquered The Romans?
Just as Daniel had predicted, the Babylonian Empire was ultimately conquered by the Persians; the Persians were, in turn, conquered by the Greeks; and, the Greeks were conquered by the Romans. But who conquered the Romans?
The Roman Empire ultimately disintegrated into pieces, and each segment seems to have had its "day in the sun." The ensuing struggles for power, and the influx of external tribes into the cohesion that once was Rome, continued over almost two millennia. In our series reviewing the rise of the "New Europe," we’ll take a brief glimpse at the caldron that has been stewing with tensions and ambitions for many centuries.
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**ARTICLES AND COMMENTARY**
THE FALL FEASTS: SUCCOTH – (Print)
"Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days unto the LORD… Ye shall dwell in booths seven days; all that are Israelites born shall dwell in booths: That your generations may know that I made the children of Israel to dwell in booths, when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God." – Leviticus 23:34, 42-43
The Feast of Tabernacles, or Succoth, begins on the 15th of Tishri and lasts for eight days. This year Succoth will begin on October 7th. The word Succoth (also spelled Sukkot) means "booths", and refers to the temporary dwellings which are built and inhabited during the festival. This feast commemorates the 40 years that the nation of Israel wandered in the desert before entering the Promised Land. The Feast of Tabernacles or the Feast of Booths, as it is sometimes called, is a joyous holiday and a time of feasting.
It is fascinating to visit Israel at this time and observe them build their temporary "booths" in the traditional way, leaving deliberate gaps in the branches to view the stars at night, and for the wind to blow through during the day. This is intended to remind them of the wilderness wanderings.
At the end of the eight days, they leave their temporary dwellings to return to their permanent homes. (This is one of the reasons some suspect that this feast, rather than the Feast of Trumpets, is suggestive of the Rapture of the Church.) This day, traditionally, is the day that Solomon dedicated the first Temple.
This feast also involved a daily processional to the Pool of Siloam to fetch water for the Temple. This ceremonial procession is the setting for the events of John 7, where Jesus offers them "living water." This procession involved four types of branches: the willow, the myrtle, the palm, and a citrus (Leviticus 23:40). The willow has no smell and no fruit. The myrtle has smell, but no fruit. The palm has no smell, but bears fruit. The citrus has both smell and bears fruit. This sounds reminiscent of the four soils of the first "kingdom parable" of Matthew 13, doesn’t it? The prophetic implications of this climactic feast are many. Most scholars associate it with the establishment of the Millennial Kingdom in Israel. To learn more about the Jewish about this subject, listen to our briefing package titled The Feasts of Israel.
The Torah – the five books of Moses – describes seven feasts on the Hebrew calendar. Three feasts are in the spring, in the month of Nisan: Passover, the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and the Feast of First Fruits. Most Bible scholars believe that the first three feasts are prophetic of the Lord’s First Coming. Then fifty days later there is the Feast of Weeks, Shavout, also known as Pentecost. The feast of Pentecost is predictive of the Church. Pentecost is notably the only feast in which leavened bread is ordained. There are three remaining feasts in the fall, in the month of Tishri: the Feast of Trumpets, the Day of Atonement, and the Feast of Tabernacles. The fall feasts are prophetic of the Lord’s Second Coming.
If you take the time to study the feasts of Israel I think you will be amazed by numerous prophetic parallels you’ll uncover. At times the tasks and rituals described in the Old Testament, particularly in the book of Leviticus, may seem laborious or even inapplicable to Christians today. However it is important to remember that every number, every place name, every detail, every jot and tittle found in scripture is there for our learning, our discovery, and our amazement. Truly, our God is an awesome God!
[Editor’s Note: This is the final installment of a three part series on the fall feasts of Israel.]
• The Feasts of Israel – MP3 Download – Koinonia House
EUROPE PREPARES FOR EXPANSION – (Print)
Over the last few years we have watched closely as the European Union has emerged as a growing world power. Europe‘s economy has grown steadily and can boast of a GDP larger than the United States‘. The EU now encompasses more than 460 million people, stretching from the Mediterranean to the Arctic. Next year it will expand its borders east all the way to the Black Sea.
The foundations of this powerful alliance were laid in the aftermath of World War II, when much of Europe lay in ruins. In order to prevent another bloody war, steps were taken to unite the nations of Europe politically and economically. In 1951 six countries (Germany, France, Italy, Belgium, Luxemburg, and the Netherlands) signed the Treaty of Paris – which created the European Coal and Steel Community. In March 1957 these same six nations signed the Treaties of Rome, which created the European Atomic Energy Community and the European Economic Community. These three multinational organizations were collectively referred to as the European Community. The six original members were then joined by the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Denmark in 1973, Greece in 1981, and Spain and Portugal in 1986.
In June 1993, a milestone treaty was signed in the city of Maastricht, Netherlands that made the Treaty of Rome obsolete. The Maastricht treaty established the basis for a common currency, a common judiciary, a common foreign policy, and a common military. So by the time Austria, Finland and Sweden joined in 1995, the European Community had transformed itself into the European Union.
In 2004, two years after the launch of euro banknotes and coins, the EU welcomed 10 new member states, bringing the total number of members to 25. Bulgaria and Romania have signed accession treaties and are set to join the EU next year. Meanwhile, Turkey, Croatia, Macedonia, and several of the Balkan states have also petitioned for membership.
While the borders of Europe expand, the battle over the new constitutional treaty continues. The current draft of the European Union Constitution is an enormous document (474 pages in the English version) that is supposed to streamline the government. All 25 nations were supposed to ratify the document before next month’s deadline. However both the French and the Dutch have voted to reject the constitution.
The defeat of the constitution, particularly in France, catapulted the European Union into crisis mode. The French rejection has left many wondering what will happen next. Although Europe‘s politicians have been hesitant to admit it publicly, it is clear that the European constitutional treaty is dead in the water. So what happens next? The consensus seems to be that French and Dutch voters have done little more than simply delay the inevitable. Efforts are already being made to resuscitate the constitution – several of Europe‘s leaders have suggested implementing the changes by drafting a treaty that could be approved by national parliaments, effectively sidestepping around unpredictable national referendums.
The Rise of the Euro
Despite some setbacks, the European Union continues to grow both politically and economically. The value of the euro has risen steadily since entering circulation in 2002. Today the euro is challenging the dollar’s position as the world’s reserve currency, a privileged status that has been held by the dollar ever since the Bretton Woods agreement over 60 years ago. It has been suggested by some that the European Union may be the revived Roman Empire. Thus it is interesting to note that the introduction of the Euro is the first time since the days of Caesar and the Roman Empire that Europe has had a common currency, others have tried, most notably Napoleon Bonaparte, but none were successful.
At present, approximately two thirds of world trade is conducted in dollars and two thirds of central banks’ currency reserves are held in the American currency – which remains the sole currency used by international institutions such as the International Monetary Fund. This confers on the US a major economic advantage: the ability to run a trade deficit year after year. US always spends more than it earns, whereas the rest of the world always earns more than it spends. A rapid move away from the dollar towards the euro could have a disastrous effect on the US economy.
The strength of the dollar is closely related to the fact that oil, the most important commodity traded in the world, is priced in US currency. The majority of countries that are oil importers have to buy their oil in dollars, which forces them to keep most of their foreign currency in dollars. However that could change.
In recent years the movement toward buying and selling oil in euros has been gaining momentum. Both the Iranian and Russian parliaments have recently discussed adopting the euro for oil sales. Russia has already entered into negotiations with Germany over the establishment of an exchange to sell oil futures in euros. Furthermore, statistics recently published by the oil cartel OPEC show that Russia has surpassed Saudi Arabia as the world’s biggest producer of oil. Meanwhile, Iran has proposed the establishment of an international commodity exchange for the express purpose of trading oil, petrochemicals and gas in various non-dollar currencies, including euros.
It would seem that the European Union is positioning itself to surpass the United States as the dominant world power. We will continue to observe with anticipation the historic developments taking place in Europe. There are still many obstacles the European Union must face on the road to solidarity, but in the eyes of some they have already accomplished the impossible. The once impenetrable wall between east and west, communist and free, is now gone, and in its place is a growing economic and political force.
• Europa Rising: Rebuilding the Empire – DVD – Special Offer!
• EU Constitution a Priority Next Year – EU Observer
• EU Heading for Single UN Seat – EU Observer
• Europe Hits Six Year Record in Economic Growth – EU Observer
SURVEYING THE BATTLEFIELD – (Print)
Homosexual rights is still a hot issue across the country, causing controversy in many states as legislators and voters fight the normalization of gay and lesbian behavior.
In California, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed two bills last week that would have promoted sensitivity training in favor of homosexuals in state schools, and would have "integrated tolerance training" into history and social science classes. Had the bills passed, students would have had to both accept homosexuality as normative and would have been required to advocate on behalf of homosexuality, bisexuality and transgenderism.
"Schools should be centers of learning – learning the fundamentals of education such as reading, writing and arithmetic," said Meredith Turney, the legislative liaison for Capitol Resource Institute. "Instead, the legislature has focused on advancing a radical social agenda in public schools. Hopefully, next session the legislature will make educating – not indoctrinating – students a priority."
In early September, Governor Schwarzenegger also vetoed a bill which would have prevented schools from using materials that reflected negatively on homosexuality. He did, however, sign a bill August 28 that would force any religious colleges, with even just one student attending on state funds, to promote homosexuality et al.
Across the country in Massachusetts, Superior Court Judge Thomas Connolly ruled last week that same-sex couples in Rhode Island are free to marry in Massachusetts. The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court legalized gay marriages in the state in 2004, but Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney made sure only Massachusetts couples could take advantage of the decision. He directed clerks in municipal offices to not issue marriage licenses to any out-of-state same-sex couples. To back up his decision, he cited a 1913 law which said Massachusetts could not marry couples if the marriages would be illegal in their own states. Rhode Island, however, does not explicitly outlaw same-sex marriage, and so Judge Connolly decided the 1913 law did not affect Rhode Islanders. Rhode Island is not required to recognize the marriages, but Massachusetts can no longer deny couples a marriage license. The decision does not affect any other states.
Meanwhile, eight states have a ban on same-sex marriage on the ballot for this November. Idaho, South Carolina, South Dakota and Tennessee are expected to easily pass the bans. Gay and Lesbian activist groups are campaigning hard in Arizona, Colorado, Virginia, and Wisconsin to keep the bans from passing in those states. Wisconsin is considered an especially fierce battle state because the law there would also outlaw civil unions, and because gay rights activists don’t consider Wisconsin to be particularly influenced by religious groups. Twenty other states have already passed bans on gay marriage.
As we consider all these issues, it is important to remember that homosexuals are human beings for whom Christ died. They are our brothers, our cousins, our mothers, our neighbors, blinded by the deceptiveness of sin. As with any other sin, complete freedom is ultimately found in the love, forgiveness, and healing that is offered in Christ Jesus. We need to pray for our loved ones struggling with homosexuality, and continue to encourage them as they choose to follow Christ.
• 2 More ‘Sexual Indoctrination’ Bills Vetoed – WND
• Same-Sex Marriage Issues Across the Country – About
• National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality – Ministry Homepage
• Hosea, Can You See? – MP3 Download – Koinonia House
• Being Faithful in a Faithless World – MP3 Download – Koinonia House
**IMPORTANT NEWS HEADLINES**
North Korea Plans to Conduct Nuclear Test – October 03, 2006
North Korea announced Tuesday that it will conduct a nuclear test in the face of what it claimed was an "extreme threat of a nuclear war" by the United States. The declaration provoked alarm and condemnation from leaders around the world. AP
Russian Bombers Penetrate Buffer Zone – October 03, 2006
Russian long-range bombers flew within 15 miles of US airspace off Alaska last week. Fully-armed U.S. fighter jets responded, intercepting the two bombers. Russian authorities confirm that pilots of the bombers made visual contact with the U.S. pilots during recent test flights, but they claim there were also regions where the bombers flew unnoticed. MosNews
US Boosts Israel Aid by Half a Billion – October 03, 2006
US Congress has approved 500 million dollars for the development of joint defense systems with Israel, projects include the development of short-range missile interception system. Ynet News
Treasures Looted by Rome ‘Are Back in the Holy Land’ – October 03, 2006
A collection of sacred artifacts looted by the Romans from the Temple of Jerusalem and long suspected of being hidden in the vaults of the Vatican are actually in the Holy Land, according to a British archaeologist. Times Online
Military Spending to Hit All-time High – October 03, 2006
Global military spending is expected to hit $1.06 trillion this year, topping the record set during the Cold War era. Reuters
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