The Clarion, May 2020

Volume 1, Issue 1     www.judeochristianclarion.com               May, 2020


INTRODUCTION

What you now hold in your hands is the first issue of the Judeo-Christian Clarion’s monthly newsletter, The Clarion. This isn’t the first time we’ve circulated a newsletter. Several years ago, when we were still known as the Jerusalem Christian Center, we published a similar newsletter on a monthly basis, sending out teachings and other information about our ministry. We are now going to resume this activity. Of course, you will still be able to find all of our teachings and other writings on our website, www.JudeoChristianClarion.com, as well as on our Facebook page and other social media. It is our prayer that the information provided to you in this newsletter will be a source of encouragement and will draw you ever-closer to our Messiah Yeshua.


CORONAVIRUS: “LORD, DON’T YOU CARE THAT WE PERISH?”

Today the world has become so uncertain. We have no idea what tomorrow will bring. Fear has gripped our souls. Well, we are not alone, for even the disciples of Yeshua felt that way. Let’s take a closer look at this story. Mark 4:35-41 tells us this story: “On that day, when evening came, He said to them, ‘Let us go over to the other side.’ Leaving the crowd, they took Him along with them in the boat, just as He was; and other boats were with Him. And there arose a fierce gale of wind, and the waves were breaking over the boat so much that the boat was already filling up. Yeshua Himself was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they woke Him and said to Him, ‘Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?’ And He got up and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, ‘Hush, be still.’ And the wind died down and it became perfectly calm. And He said to them, ‘Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?’ They became very much afraid and said to one another, ‘Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?'” The fact that the Scriptures tell us a storm arose tells us that out of nowhere, without their knowledge, a wind storm came upon them. Of course, they did what they needed to do to keep the boat from sinking, but when they realized they were going to sink they thought to themselves, “Does He not feel the waves?” “Does He not hear the waves crashing against the boat?” “Does He not hear us crying out in fear?” “Doesn’t He care?” So they asked Him, “Don’t you care that we are perishing?” Is this not what we do when things arise in our lives? We are filled with fear and anxiety, not knowing the future, but all we can see is the storm before us. As soon as the boat begins to rock, we ask, “God don’t you care that I am perishing? You must see me? You must know what is happening and yet You do nothing about it.” What was Yeshua’s response? “Why are you afraid?” What did Paul tell Timothy? Paul records it in 2 Timothy 1:3-7, “I thank God, whom I serve with a pure conscience, as my forefathers did, as without ceasing I remember you in my prayers night and day, greatly desiring to see you, being mindful of your tears, that I may be filled with joy, when I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also. Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” Timothy was afraid for Paul, and Paul tells him that he was praying for him because of his tears. Paul knew that deep down Timothy had faith, but only needed to be reminded that being afraid was not from God. “Timothy, I tell you God has given you power and love and a sound mind” (some versions say “and discipline”). Isaiah gives Israel a message from God In Isaiah 43:1-4, “But now, thus says the Lord, your Creator, O Jacob, and He who formed you, O Israel, ‘Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine! When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, nor will the flame burn you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior; I have given Egypt as your ransom, Cush and Seba in your place. Since you are precious in My sight, since you are honored and I love you, I will give other men in your place and other peoples in exchange for your life.'” God did not leave us defenseless in our times of trials and temptations. He loves us and cares about us too much, for He said He will never leave us or forsake us. Storms are going to arise in our lives, and most times we will not see them coming, but we should not be caught off guard. Today, we say we have an invisible enemy, a virus, but as believers in the Messiah, we already know that our enemy is invisible. We know that he can strike at any moment, but as good soldiers we must always be ready to fight the good fight. Today, everyone is putting on a mask, but as believers we must put on the armor of God. We have the shield of faith, we have the sword of the spirit, the Word of God. Our mask is the helmet of salvation. Prayer is our covering. What did our Messiah do when the disciples came in fearful and panicked? He stood up! This is the time we must stand up. We are believers. We are the light to the world. God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power. Yeshua rebuked the wind and so must we. Psalm 91 tells us, “You will not be afraid of the terror by night, or of the arrow that flies by day; of the pestilence that stalks in darkness, or of the destruction that lays waste at noon. A thousand may fall at your side and ten thousand at your right hand, but it shall not approach you. You will only look on with your eyes and see the recompense of the wicked. For you have made the Lord, my refuge, even the Most High, your dwelling place. No evil will befall you, nor will any plague come near your tent. For He will give His angels charge concerning you, to guard you in all your ways. They will bear you up in their hands, that you do not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread upon the lion and cobra, the young lion and the serpent you will trample down.” We have the power to speak to that mountain called Coronavirus and it must flee. We can trample down our enemy, the devil, who brings such things our way. But we have the power of Almighty God within us, “For greater is He who is in us than he who is in this world.” We get our marching orders from our heavenly Father, the creator of heaven and earth. We are not of this world. We live in this world, but we are not of this world. Our Father, who is in us and who loves us and cares for us, has surrounded us with His angels, and our lives are in His hands. Fear not! Time and time again God’s people have been afraid, but we read in John 20:19-20 this: “On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the disciples had gathered together and locked the doors of the place because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Yeshua came and stood among them and said to them, ‘Peace be with you.’ When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord.” People, let us arise and stand tall, letting our light shine in this darkness with peace in our hearts. Let our faith be bold because we know who we serve, and yes, let us rejoice, because our Savior has given us the victory. He has risen and we must too.


RUNNING WITH HORSES, PART 1

So many times we bring our anxieties and concerns before God because we live in a time of uncertainty. In fact, I guess there has never been a time of certainty, because we do not know the future. But we see Jeremiah coming before God with a question that has been echoed all through time: “Why does the way of the wicked prosper?” We want to take a closer look at this passage in Jeremiah 12:1-4: “Righteous are you, O Lord, when I complain to you; yet I would plead my case before you. Why does the way of the wicked prosper? Why do all who are treacherous thrive? You plant them, and they take root; they grow and produce fruit; you are near in their mouth and far from their heart. But you, O Lord, know me; you see me, and test my heart toward you. Pull them out like sheep for the slaughter, and set them apart for the day of slaughter. How long will the land mourn and the grass of every field wither? For the evil of those who dwell in it the beasts and the birds are swept away, because they said, ‘He will not see our latter end.’” God answers Jeremiah with this answer in verse 5: “If you have raced with men on foot and they have worn you out, how can you compete with horses? If you stumble in safe country, how will you manage in the thickets by the Jordan?” Jeremiah had a very good question for the Lord. I guess it could be a question for every generation. We want to look at God’s response, not in Jeremiah’s day, but in our day. How does God’s response pertain to us today? The Bible speaks a lot to us about the perilous times. We have seen many wars over the years and nations who have treated their people unjustly. Since Israel became a nation and the Jewish people have returned to their homeland, along with the whole world now connected in every way, we have everything aligned for the New One World and the Antichrist. We know with the coming of the end times that darkness is going to overcome the light. Paul tells Timothy this in 2 Timothy 3:1-5, “But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.” We see here that there is coming a time of lawlessness to prepare for the man of lawlessness. Isaiah 5:20 tells us this: “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.” Today we are seeing just that, a time when you cannot reason with anyone, because when people believe that good is evil and evil is good then we have lost all reason, lies become the norm, darkness becomes light and the foundation of all things fall apart. Let’s look at God’s response to Jeremiah. God tells Him, “If you have raced with men on foot and they have worn you out, how can you compete with horses? If you stumble in safe country, how will you manage in the thickets by the Jordan?” We see that God was saying to him, and to paraphrase it, “If you can’t handle it when times are still fairly good, how will you handle it when times get really bad?” So let’s now look at these horses that we are going to have to run with.Revelation 6:1-2 tells us, “I watched as the Lamb opened the first of the seven seals. Then I heard one of the four living creatures say in a voice like thunder, ‘Come!’ I looked, and there before me was a white horse! Its rider held a bow, and he was given a crown, and he rode out as a conqueror bent on conquest.” This is not the return of the Messiah. This is the Spirit of Antichrist. He is a deceiver and a liar trying to get God’s people to fall. 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4 tells us, “Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Messiah Yeshua and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Messiah had come. Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.” 1 John 2:18 says this, “Dear children, this is the last hour; and as you have heard that the antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come. This is how we know it is the last hour.” 1 John 4:1-3 tells us, “ Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Yeshua Messiah has come in the flesh is from God, and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already.” In the end times the one world religion will be Humanism. Humanism denies the existence of the one true God and His Messiah. It says that we are all gods. It denies the commandments of God because it is a lawless religion. Revelation 12:17, “So the dragon was enraged with the woman, and went off to make war with the rest of her children, who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Yeshua.” Today we have seen a significant drop in church attendance and as time goes on, we will see droves of people leaving behind their beliefs. Our youth have fallen away greatly. Fewer and fewer people are becoming ministers of the Word. People do not believe that the Ten Commandments are relevant in today’s society. Words like sin, judgement, and blood have been removed because our Gospel message today is a message that is seeker friendly. Our churches must not look like a church or act like a church or even sound like a church. Yes, the spirit of antichrist is riding throughout the world seeking whom he may conquer. So the question is now to us, “If you have raced with men on foot and they have worn you out, how can you compete with horses? If you stumble in safe country, how will you manage in the thickets by the Jordan?” Hebrews 12:1-2 says this, “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Yeshua the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” 2 Peter 1:1-11 tells us this, “Peter, a servant and an apostle of Messiah Yeshua, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Messiah Yeshua. Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Yeshua our Lord, according as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that has called us to glory and virtue: whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these you might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that you shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Messiah Yeshua. But he that lacks these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and has forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if you do these things, you shall never fall: for so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Messiah Yeshua.” And finally 2 Corinthians 13:5 tells us, “Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Messiah Yeshua is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!” It’s time to draw closer to God so that you will be an overcomer.


COUNTRY OF THE MONTH

Every month, we pray for a specific country where Christians are experiencing persecution. This month, we are praying for the nation of Myanmar. Myanmar, also known as Burma, is a majority-Buddhist nation where religious minorities face persecution. Here are some ways you can pray:
• Pray that Christians in Myanmar will be encouraged and emboldened despite violence and hardship.
• Pray for an end to ethnic armed conflicts, drug abuse, human trafficking, and religious violence/discrimination in Myanmar.
• Pray that missionaries will be successful in providing Bibles to believers, especially in remote villages.
• Pray that those who are sharing their faith will be protected and successful., and that many Myanmarese (including the persecutors) will come to know the truth and receive salvation through Yeshua.


SANDIEGRAM: “THE ROBIN”

Lord, as the mother robin sits on her eggs and keeps them warm,

So do You keep me warm

With Your blanket of love.

The indwelling of Your Holy Spirit in me feeds my soul

Just as the mother robin feeds her young.

You send Your angels to protect me

Just as the mother robin watches and protects her little ones.

Like the baby robins who grow

From the nourishment the mother robin gives them,

So do I grow from the nourishment of Your Word.

As the baby robins grow and learn to fly and leave their nest,

I also am able to go out and take care of the affairs of my Father.

Thank You for Your Spirit,

Your Word, and truth

So that I can go out daily

And share what You have given me with others.

Like the robins who fly,

Let me also fly high in Your Spirit

So that one day we shall meet face to face.


PHOTOS FROM PASSOVER (AND PURIM UNDER QUARANTINE)

The first image is of our Purim decorations. The second and third are from the evening of April 8, when we had a small gathering to celebrate the Passover seder.

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