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Ipswich Christadelphians

"Prove all things, hold fast what is good" 1Th 5:21

Short articles that give food for thought. Click on the '+' to review articles.

Women in Christ's Genealogy…

Women in Christ's Genealogy…

Women in Christ's Genealogy

  The women in Christ’s line…An extract from the Testimony Magazine, February 2016 There are four women mentioned in the genealogy of Christ as recorded by Matthew. It is suggested that they reflect the life in Christ of a baptised believer. &nbs hab, the harlot. Rahab lived in Jericho in a world so steeped in sin that it had to be totally destroyed. However, she heard of the might of the God of Israel and believed in the way that He had led His people Israel out of Egypt and throug…

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Keep Hanging On!…

Keep Hanging On!…

Keep Hanging On!

Every day we say things which are not to be taken literally. If we’re not feeling well, we might say that “We’re under the weather” or that we “Feel like death”. That’s just a colourful way of expressing our feelings, and everybody understands that. Literaurative? Smetaphors are used which have a quite different meaning when applied literally. We might say that “My heart stopped when I saw it!”, when we really mean that we were very shocked at something we had seen. But…

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The Prophet Isaiah…

The Prophet Isaiah…

Isaiah lived in the times of Uzziah, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah – about 740 to 680 BC. This was the period when the Assyrian Empire was growing in power, and Judah was about to be invaded by Sennacherib. Isaiah lived in royal circles (he was a great friend and advisor of King Hezekiah) and had a wife and children in Jerusalem. Isaiah is writing at a time of nations in decline, he is as it were sent at the 11th&n ur to speak to Israel. Basically the book can be divided into 3 rough s…

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Developing Bible Study Skills - 5…

Developing Bible Study Skills - 5…

David's input into Solomon's temple This study s designed to highlight a number of different aspects of Bible study, as follows: that Bible study is not difficult or the preserve of the intellectual the need to give careful attention to the text the value of comparing Scripture with Scripture the value of building up a picture from various scriptures the value of recording and preserving information found. &n  You will need: Bible with marginal references, concordance or compueriz…

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When the time is right…

When the time is right…

When the time is right

Sometimes things happen just because we are in the right place at the right time. Or, if it is something bad that happens, because we were in the wrong place at that very time. What if we had been born at a different time in the world’s history?&n  you had been born in the Middle Ages, just reading this website (had it been around at the time!) could have cost you your life. Many people were executed just because they wanted to read the Bible for themselves. At that time the Church held the m…

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Developing Bible Study Skills - 4…

Developing Bible Study Skills - 4…

  The Promise To David  This study is designed to highlight a number of different aspects of Bible study, as follows: that Bible study is not difficult or the preserve of the intellectual the need to give careful attention to the text the value of comparing Scripture with Scripture the value of following up quotations the value of recording and preserving information found. You will need: Bible with marginal references, concordance or computerized Bible There are two ac…

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Developing Bible Study Skills - 3…

Developing Bible Study Skills - 3…

Psalm 34 and David’s experiences This study is designed to highlight a number of different aspects of Bible study, as follows: at Bible study is not difficult or the preserve of the intellectualtrneed to give careful attention to the texttrimportance of contexttrvalue of comparing Scripture with Scripturetrvalue of recording and preserving information found. will need: &nbs e with marginal references; &nbs ordance or computerised Bible&nbs The title of Psalm 3…

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Developing Bible Study Skills - 2…

Developing Bible Study Skills - 2…

Developing Bible Study Skills - 2

  The death of Saul You will need a Bible, a Bible Atlas, a concordance.   Read 1 Samuel 31     This study is designed to highlight the following aspects of Bible study from the list given in Part 1: 1 show that Bible study is not difficult or the preserve of the intellectual show the need to give careful attention to the text reveal the value of knowing Biblical geography highlight the value of recording and preserving information found The Bi…

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Developing Bible Study Skills - 1…

Developing Bible Study Skills - 1…

Introduction This series of short articles is designed to demonstrate, by working through some simple pieces of Bible exposition, that Bible study is not just for the academic. It is hoped that any who read these short expositions will realise, if they have not done so already, that rewarding Bible study is within the grasp of us all. All that will be required to develop your own studies along similar lines will be a Bible, ideally with marginal cross-references; a good concordance or comp…

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Salvation from sin and death…

Salvation from sin and death…

Salvation from sin and death

  Criminal Convictions The original Guildhall at Lichfield probably goes back even further than 1421, the first recorded date. It was known to be the meeting place of the guild of St Mary and St John which was founded in 1387, hence its name the “Guildhall.” And the later use of part of the building as a prison is enough to send a chill down one’s spine. For in the times in question there was little mercy shown to suspected criminals; the only protection from the weather was the bars w…

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The Lamb of God…

The Lamb of God…

The Lamb of God

    It was John the Baptist who first made the connection. He had become a well-known figure in First Century Israel; a priest by birth who had become a reformer instead. Positioning himself by the River Jordan, instead of in the Temple at Jerusalem, he had summoned the nation to renew their vows and to enter into a new spiritual experience. They were to repent of their sins and be baptised in the Jordan. Coming Deliverer But, on his own admission, John was not the centre of the r…

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What's around the corner?…

What's around the corner?…

What's around the corner?

    Have you ever travelled along a twisting and narrow road hoping that there is no other vehicle approaching the same tricky corner at the same time? Or have you walked along a winding path wondering what you are going to see around the corner, hoping that you will get a new insight into how near you are to your journey’s end? rld Events Things that are happening in today’s world are a bit like that for some people. We seem to be turning a corner, but nobody is very sure what…

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One step at a time…

One step at a time…

One step at a time

Climbing steps is easy enough when you are young and fit but not so easy when you’re getting older and a bit stiff. Young people love to race up, partly to show what they can do at their age; older folk have learned that it’s surprising what you can accomplish if you take things one step at a time. r ChallengesLife can present us with some formidable challenges. We might have a crisis with our health, or with that of someone close to us. We could lose our job; have to move home; make…

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Coping with Change…

Coping with Change…

Coping with Change

 This is the time of year in Britain when it might snow. It might or it might not. The weather has been so unpredictable of late − 2012 being almost the wettest year since records began − that anything might happen. Some years it snows heavily; occasionally we get a very severe winter; but it could remain mild. It’s that unpredictability that makes it difficult to plan ahead so that everything carries on much as before, snow or no snow. ck! is well known that a light snowfall c…

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Felixstowe Talk…

 

 

What is the world coming to?

When asked for a sign of his return Jesus told his disciples (Luke 21)

25  And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;* 26  Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.

And that’s just like today’s world with its turmoil and uncertainty! The most current example being Greece and its problems. After inconclusive elections on May 6th, efforts are still being made to try to secure a workable government. It won’t be easy as most Parties want to ditch the acceptance of austerity policies in exchange for bailouts.

If the cliff-edge talks fail, and a workable coalition can’t be cobbled together, Greece will face fresh elections, prolonged political instability and a possible slide towards an exit from the Euro. Most Greeks appear to want to stay with the Euro but are hoping for better terms which the rest of the Eurozone do not want to offer.

Greece and its Eurozone partners have come close to the brink before, and always found a way to step back. Experience would suggest they will do so again.

However, a recent analysis by economists Goldman Sachs showed that nations like Spain, Greece, and Portugal have little room for manoeuvre. Even if they could reduce labour costs by cutting wages by a third, recovery would still be very slow and would suit no one, not even Germany. Nor would austerity please the Greek voter who is demonstrating against the measures already agreed.

Dawn of the Far Right

Throughout Europe the Far Right are capitalising on these problems and in Greece in the poorest areas the Political Party ‘Golden Dawn’ has become strong.

Throughout Europe the Far Right are capitalising on these problems and in Greece in the poorest areas the Political Party ‘Golden Dawn’ has become strong.

It promotes hard line solutions which seem to gel with many who decry Greece’s huge immigration problem and the past Government’s inability to deal with it. Golden Dawn are often labelled neo-Nazis and while helping the poorest Greek citizens they don’t hide the fact that they approve of many of Hitler’s policies. Their party symbol, based on an ancient Greek motif, looks a lot like a Swastika and their party leader, Nikos Michaloliakos, recently claimed that Nazi concentration camps did not use ovens and gas chambers to exterminate Jews during the Holocaust.

Similarly many in the rest of Europe are developing the attitude of ‘secure borders- no immigrants’. In France, the National Front Leader Marine Le Pen gained the party's highest ever share of the vote in the first round of the presidential elections and, no doubt influenced by financial problems, more people in countries like Holland and Denmark  are turning to the Far Right.

Because of the problems in Greece, Global Financial Markets are worrying about the strength of the Euro and have started buying dollars instead. All European Nations are feeling the pinch, and are likely to suffer more in the near future with the exception perhaps of Germany.

So the Greeks, Spanish and Portuguese along with others have found that membership of the Eurozone has not brought them parity with wealthier Nations but austerity, cutbacks , unemployment and failing economies. With the Germans in particular insisting that they should abide by the rules ie face years of low wages and austerity, small wonder it seems that Europe appears to be ‘going critical’.

 

A Train Wreck in Slow Motion

Can it be then, that we are seeing the EU slowly disintegrate before our eyes? The Bible indicates otherwise with the Book of Revelation prophecying that the other members of the EU will hand over their powers to Germany (The Beast) before the day when they oppose the Lord Jesus Christ at his return.

Rev 17:12 “And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. 13 These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast. 17 For God hath put in their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled.”

In view of this prophecy we would expect Europe to be unifying rather than disintegrating. In Revelation the beast is a symbol used to track the Roman Empire through it's various phases; from Pagan Rome, to the Holy Roman Empire and on. The symbology is explained by looking at Daniel chapter 7. There he sees four beasts which represent the procession of the Kingdoms of men (Dan 7:17). The beasts are a lion, a bear, a leopard and a very frightening ten horned beast. The Lion represents the Babylonian Kingdom, the Bear is the Medo Persian Kingdom which followed. The Leopard represents Greece and the 4th beast is Rome which was the cruellist of all. In the book of Revelation we find these 4 beasts again this time rolled into one ! (Rev 13:1-2).

Rev 13:2"And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority."

Daniel 7 shows how the Roman Empire is formed out of previous Empires. The book of Revelation continues the story of the Roman Empire which has persecuted Christ’s servants down through the centuries.

Yet, is it feasible that in the near future the members of the Eurozone will meekly hand over their power to Germany, the beast portrayed in Revelation? The answer is yes! Today is surely the time the Lord Jesus spoke of in Luke 21:25 quoted earlier ‘ And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;’

A train wreck of mammoth proportions appears to be just round the curve, and beleaguered governments may see this union as the only way out of anarchy. In August last year the Mail Online carried a headline “Rise of the Fourth Reich, How Germany is using the Financial Crisis to Conquer Europe." Commenting upon a meeting between the German and French leaders, the paper said "Frau Merkel called for a 'stronger coordination of policy' and 'a new quality of cooperation' within the Eurozone and went on "Although she will not yet admit it, this all suggests the first step has been taken towards a fiscal union that will leave Germany dictating the financial terms for the rest of Europe.”

"... fiscal union means:... one economic policy, one taxation system, one social security system, one debt, one economy, one finance minister. And all of the above would be German."

"If such a plan succeeded it would make Europe effectively a German Empire, with non-Eurozone countries such as Britain on the sidelines..."

"This would entail a loss of sovereignty not seen in those countries since many were under the jackboot of the Third Reich 70 years ago."

Consider Rev 17:12 again

"And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast."

God’s solution to the world’s problems

Here we see the nations of Europe handing over their sovereignty to the beast empire. With the rapidly worsening situation what choice will they have? The single currency Euro option has proved unworkable, and can only get worse. So what are the options:-

Return to their own currencies and face inflation plus the nightmare of converting all legal documents, mortgages etc to the drachma or the peseta etc.

Or, complete monetary and political integration. This would seem much safer, even though it comes with the loss of sovereignty. It may take time, but as we have seen, the Scriptures indicate that Europe will ultimately be one body as in the days of the Holy Roman Empire with the rulers of Europe surrendering their power and strength to the beast. Then Anti-Semitism will re surface and jealous eyes will look at Israel, prosperous and at peace. When Jesus returns to reign from Jerusalem, and re-establishes the Jewish kingdom in Israel, this Beast Empire (unified Europe), aided by the False Prophet (the Papacy) and accompanied by the Dragon (Russia) will oppose him and will fall. Revelation speaks of their work in raising up the nations to oppose Christ (Rev16:13-16) and Chapter 17 continues in verse 14:

“These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful.”

The present financial crisis in Greece and the rest of Europe is heartbreaking but it will bring Joy in its wake for all who look for the return of Jesus.

Luke 21: 27  And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28  And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.

[*The Sea in Scripture usually represents Nations ie Isa 57:20 But the wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt. Rev 17: 15  And he saith unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues.]

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