Since its inception in 2001, The Refiner's Fire has been bombarded with endless "hate mails" from Christians hammering us with the tiresome mantra, "We're not under the law; we're under grace because Jesus nailed it to the cross." We've literally spent years answering these emails and attempting to defend God's Word according to what the Bible actually says. Unfortunately, more often than not, our scripture-laden comments fell on deaf ears.
Rather than to continue the fruitless bickering with Christians whose goal is never to learn, but to "be right" and argue their respective opinions, we have written the following article that captures the essence of, and provides answers to, most "typical" Christian comments.
To begin with, here are a few pointed questions and comments:
Are you an "on-fire" Christian who demands Truth, or are you one of those "lukewarm" types who likes the status-quo, even when you're shown proof positive that what you believe is not Biblical? If you're "lukewarm" you won't like this article because what we have to say won't fit into the little box you've put God in. But, if you have been "missing something" in church or simply feel that "something" is off with your brand of Christianity, then read on, because you will be pleasantly surprised!
The Bible amply warns us that there will be many apostate people, false prophets and teachers and strange "beliefs" in the end times, and that only those who have the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) residing within will be able to stand firm. At this point in time, there are three major "religions" in the world: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam - each with their own theologies, and each claiming to be the "right" one that possesses the keys to eternal life.
One of the basic tenets in each of the above religions is that sin is bad and that it requires Divine punishment. But, what constitutes sin? How can we know when we've sinned and, if we're guilty, how can we stop sinning? It might come as a surprise to some, but the ONLY source of Godly wisdom about what constitutes sin is the Torah (the five Books of Moses); it is our only blueprint for moral living! The Koran's "scriptures" - compiled some 600 years after the death of Messiah Yeshua (who Christians call Jesus Christ) - were borrowed from Torah; and the Christian "New Testament", while a continuation of the "Old Testament", has been mistranslated and misinterpreted to the point where the Messiah outlined throughout the Tanach (OT) in no way resembles the Divine Being who actually walked among us and offered Himself as the Final Sin Sacrifice....
Case in point: Christianity insists that "Jesus abolished the law." Unfortunately, they confused GOD's law (Torah - His divine teachings) with MAN's legalism and traditions, and consequently came up with an entire religion that has nothing to do with the teachings of the "Old Testament" God. While this might shock some, the answer becomes less muddled when we see how the Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines sin: "Transgression of the law of God". Who transgresses God's Law? Those who "practice lawlessness" - those who are without the Law (Torah)....Yeshua (or Y'shua, depending on one's preferred transliteration of ) said:
Matthew 7: 23 I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness."
Does this mean Torah saves? No! Belief in Yeshua is the only reason we have eternal life! Yeshua was our Final SIN Sacrifice; but His death did not automatically abolish all of God's rules, commands, and Divine teachings which are our only blueprint for moral living! That is a huge Christian misconception, and one most Christians will fight to the death to uphold. That is why we have written the article below.
Let's start with a little history lesson:
Hebrews 13:8 tells us (YHWH/Yahweh/God) is the same today, yesterday and tomorrow. Yeshua (our Savior's given, Hebrew Name which means "YHWH is Salvation") was YHWH-Come-in-the-Flesh during His time on Earth. He came to Earth to teach us about YHWH and His Torah (divine teachings/commands) and to show us how to live together according to God's wishes, and to present Himself as the Final Sin Sacrifice - an act which would hand the keys of eternal life to ALL mankind. A fact that many seem to miss was that Yeshua and all His disciples were Torah observant, seventh-day Sabbath and Feast-keeping, kosher Jews, who - contrary to popular belief - never preached against Torah observance.
Catholics and Christians didn't invent the concept of "Jesus" out of the blue; they basically "borrowed" Him from the Jews - and immediately stripped Him of His identity. They changed His Name to "Jesus"; they changed his birthday from the first day of Sukkot (Tabernacles) to December 25th (never mind the fact that ADONAI never said to concentrate on His birthday at all; they insisted He abolished YHWH's Torah including the seventh-day Sabbath and the Biblical Feasts, suggesting those holy days were "only for Jews"; and despite the fact that YHWH commanded us not to have idols or to make graven images, they placed statues of "Jesus" (and Mary) in every Catholic church and hung him on the cross in many Christian churches - never mind the fact that no one has actually seen Him face-to-face in two thousand years and can't honestly proclaim that today's statues are a true representation of Him....
As an added slap in the face of God, the Catholics and Christians decided that "the Jews" were the "bad guys" and when they weren't harassing, imprisoning or slaughtering them in the Inquisition, the pogroms, or the Holocaust, the "Church" leaders were teaching that Judaism had been replaced with a new religion that had new rules which in no way smacked of Judaism. "Church founders" such as Ignatius(35-107 CE), Marcion (110-160 AD) and Tertullian(155-230 CE) were instrumental in tweaking the Scriptures and inserting their own opinions - which, of course, were swallowed by "the world" as "true Gospel" which sought to free the Church from "false Jewish doctrines":
- Ignatius was considered to be an "auditor" and "disciple" of John. Ignatius pioneered the Greek-based Christian religion and was instrumental in the assimilation of paganism into early Christianity, packaging Christianity for a Greco-Roman Hellenic culture. Ignatius saw Jewish followers of Y'shua as nothing more than legalists and Judaizers. He despised the observance of Shabbat in favor of sunrise "Lord's day", Sun-Day teachings. It is scarcely possible to exaggerate the importance of the Ignatian letters to modern Christian institutions. He was a key player in the development of the modern Christo-Pagan church, promoting the "infallibility of the church" and the "universal church". If there ever was a hierarchy loving "Christian" with a Hellenistic autocratic mindset, it was Ignatius who gave himself the nickname Theophoros (the God-bearer) and taught that deacons, presbyters and bishops were a separate category of people, high and lifted up, and infused with Jesus-like authority to be lords over people. Christians consider Ignatius as one of the all time biggest movers and shakers of the all-Gentile church. He strongly instructed that "without the bishop's supervision, no baptisms or love feasts are permitted". He also believed Mary to be the eternal virgin mother of God.
- Every Christian who uses the term "Old" and "New" testament must take their hats off to Marcion as he was the one who coined these terms which perfectly reflect the Hellenistic mindset of the pagan world which is ignorant of Torah. Marcion taught that the Old and New Testaments could not be reconciled with each other, and this is what you will hear in Christian churches today.
- One of Tertullian's better known "achievements" was to fall into a trance and then prophesy under the influence of the "Holy Spirit", insisting his utterances were the voice of the "Holy Spirit". (The modern day speaking in tongues "born again" Pentecostal or Charismatic Christians must really appreciate someone like Tertullian!) Also, Tertullian, while fumbling in all manner of paganism and spiritism, picked up an "anointing" of the "Holy Ghost" and coined the word "Trinity" which is one of the most beloved doctrines of the pagan Church to this very day. The "persons of the trinity" doctrine flourishes in the hierarchy-based religion which sees itself as a three-sided pyramid structure. Tertullian's works abound with puns, wit, sarcasm and a continual pounding of his opponents with invectives.
Among the teachings for the Catholics were the concepts that the Pope was the mediator between God and man, and that Mary as the "Mother of God" was to take center stage and become an "intercessor" between man and Jesus who was, as one recent article suggested, "in charge of the world's peace and our 'unbreakable support in the hard struggle against sin'..." The only problem is: there is absolutely NO Scripture to support this tradition - yet millions pray to Mary! Before Pope John Paul II died in 2005, he addressed his written motto in Latin to the Virgin Mary, which translated means, "I am totally in your hands." Where is the Scripture to support the idea that Mary has anything to do with our salvation?
After Catholism twisted YHWH's Word into oblivion, a myriad Christian denominations began to spring up that, at least, put Yeshua and His birth mother back into proper perspective. However, nobody seemed to realize that Christianity, while advocating the entire Bible from Genesis to Revelation, was missing the context of the first two-thirds of God's Word which contained ALL of His Divine teachings. Thanks to the Greek/Hellenistic mindset which undermined the original Hebrew mindset, Christian leaders used the much misunderstood teachings of Paul to instill the ideas that "we're no longer under the law, but under grace" and "Jesus nailed it to the cross" - which to this day are still etched in granite as far as most Christians are concerned.
The nagging question that only the rare Christian dares ask himself is: Why would Jesus' death on the stake suddenly negate God's original Divine instructions or negate His "forever" commands? In Biblical times the people at least had a valid excuse to "go astray": They blindly followed their rabbis because they couldn't read! But today's believers cannot make that same claim, so why are people still blindly following their congregation leaders and often allowing themselves to be led down a path that has pulled them completely away from Biblical Truth? Why are they not reading God's Word for themselves and speaking up when something seems "off"?
Another point of contention is that Christians have perpetuated the myth that Jesus rose on a Sunday, which supposedly changed the command for the seventh day Sabbath (Genesis 2:2-3). But where in Scripture did GOD ever tell us that His Sabbath in New Covenant times was to be observed on the first day of the week (Sunday)? Not only do many/most Christians not bother to check to see what the Bible says about which day the Sabbath is, but those who insist on participating in the Sunday sabbath myth don't even bother to keep the Sabbath according to God's rules!
Isaiah 58: 13 If you hold back your foot on Shabbat from pursuing your own interests on my holy day; if you call Shabbat a delight, ADONAI'S holy day, worth honoring; then honor it by not doing your usual things or pursuing your interests or speaking about them. If you do, you will find delight in ADONAI - I will make you ride on the heights of the land and feed you with the heritage of your ancestor Ya'akov, for the mouth of ADONAI has spoken."
What everyone needs to understand is every part of Yeshua's life reflected a Torah-sacred pattern. Y'shua was conceived as the Light of the World during the Festival of Lights (Hannukah - in December on our Gregorian calendar), and was born precisely between Yom Kippur and the start of Sukkot (which always falls in the September/October timeframe), and He became the Paschal Lamb who rose on Firstfruits.
The next questions we would pose to mainstream Christians are: Why would Jesus' death negate Judaism, without which we wouldn't have the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, in the first place? (If God hadn't scattered the Jews into the nations, He and His Son would have remained the best-kept secret of tiny little Israel!) What would cause people who borrowed someone else's God to go on murdering rampages in order to "convert" the people whose God they borrowed (and changed into a Gentile adonis), so that the people to whom God gave His Torah can become "saved"?
What would possess Christians to tell their Jewish brethren they're going to hell if they don't believe in Jesus? Why should a Jew believe in a god who in no way resembles the Jewish, Torah observant Messiah; someone who supposedly abolished Torah and has allowed the celebration of paganized "holidays" such as Christmas and Easter which have NO basis in the Bible?
Doesn't it stand to reason that YHWH, who said He wants no one to perish (2 Peter 3:9) and Who, throughout the history of the world, always provided ways to atone for sin, would offer eternal life to His Chosen People, the Hebrews (Genesis 12:3, Deuteronomy 7:6-8, Jeremiah 31:35-37, Romans 11:25-27, Romans 11:11-12). Although "the Jews" (which has become a "catch-all" term for all of the 12 Tribes) don't "believe" in Yeshua as Messiah yet, they DO believe in YHWH and they follow His Torah.
The difference is that religious Jews obey "the Father" and His Torah, while Christians concentrate on "the Son" - albeit, they believe "Jesus" was a Torah-less entity who came to abolish all of His Father's Divine Instructions in Righteousness. Yes, Yeshua said, "No one comes to the Father except through Me" (John 14:6); however, we must remember He and the Father are ONE (Isaiah 53:1; John 10:30. John 1:1-5; Philippians 2:5-11). So, what right do Christians have to force the Torah-less "Jesus" down the collective throat of the Jews for their salvation?
Putting an end to the "Jesus nailed it to the cross" myth:
We love our Christian brethren, but the time has come to put an end to the "Jesus nailed it to the cross" argument and get Biblical: "Jesus" had another Name while He walked this Earth: Yeshua. He nailed to the cross the requirement to kill innocent animasl to atone for our sins; nothing more, nothing less. Belief in Yeshua means salvation/eternal life. But that in no way negates the need for Torah, God's original teachings. The Bible tells us that anyone who wants to follow the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is to be Torah observant:
Numbers 15: 13 "'Everyone who is native-born must do these things in this way when he brings an offering made by fire as an aroma pleasing to the LORD. 14 For the generations to come, whenever an alien or anyone else living among you presents an offering made by fire as an aroma pleasing to the LORD, he must do exactly as you do. 15 The community is to have the same rules for you and for the alien living among you; this is a lasting ordinance for the generations to come. You and the alien shall be the same before the LORD: 16 The same laws and regulations will apply both to you and to the alien living among you.'"
Some insist that "Torah was only for the Jews", but as we can see from the above, that is not true. There were no "Jews" until Jacob gave birth to the Tribe of Judah where the term "Jew" originated. And yet ALL who believed in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob were Torah observant!
The "foreigners" include everyone who has chosen to believe in YHWH! The Bible tells us Yeshua is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8); and that He and His Apostles were all Torah observant, seventh day Sabbath and Feast-keeping, kosher Jews.
REMEMBER: Yeshua didn't come to save the whole world; only the lost sheep of Israel (Matthew 15:24). But who is Israel? Anyone who believes in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! In other words, as a believer YOU are part of Israel! How do we know this? Because we see in Numbers 15:13-16 that YHWH accepts ALL who choose Him! The Bible also tells us that His original followers (both Jew and Gentile) in the First Century were all Torah observant, as well. So what supposedly happened to change that?
Jeremiah 31:32 tells us that Yahweh made His "new covenant" with the House of Israel and with the House of Judah; He did not make a "new covenant" with the Gentiles because He did not have an "old covenant" with the Gentiles! He did, however, extend His grace and mercy to the Gentiles who, once they become believers in Yeshua the Jewish Messiah, automatically become part of "Israel"! And God told Israel: "I give you good instruction: Do not forsake my Torah" (Proverbs 4:2).
Therefore, it's high time to set the record straight and let the world know that Jesus "nailed to the cross" not Torah, but the "documented opinions of Man" - the man-made traditions and interpretations that had forced their way into the Word of God. Yeshua even said He came NOT to abolish but to fulfill" (Matthew 5:17-20). "Fulfill" did not mean "put an end to"; but rather, to "establish" or "confirm"! Torah is our only blueprint for moral behavior, so why would it have been abolished at the cross? That makes no sense! Rav Sha'ul (Apostle Paul) said the following which most Christians seem to overlook: Romans 3: 31 Do we then nullify the Law through faith? May it never be! On the contrary, we establish the Law.
Author and Aramaic scholar Andrew Gabriel Roth further explains:
Colossians 2: 14 Having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.
So, what then is "the certificate of debt"?....The word in Aramaic means both "debt" and "sin". In addition, Y'shua used the same word in the Sermon on the Mount when he says, "Forgive our debts/offenses, as we forgive those who are in debt to us/have offended us." Interesting to note, half the Greek texts read "debt" and the other half "offense" because each group chose one of this word's two meanings. However, in Aramaic thought, to be in sin is literally to be in debt!
So, what then is "the certificate of debt"?....The word in Aramaic means both "debt"...And so, the certificate of our debts is simply a record of all the transgressions that we have generated throughout our lives. The Torah tells us what those sins are, but what Y'shua did was take the transcript of those sins and nails those to the cross!
So, what then is "the certificate of debt"?....The word in Aramaic means both "debt"...so when we are guilty of sin, YHWH is one witness to that guilt, and the record that is generated of that sin is another. However, with the reconcilement of Y'shua on the cross dying in our place, that second witness/record against us is obliterated, and the Torah remains simply to guide us in the path of righteousness for the rest of our redeemed lives.
When most Christians are confronted with the idea that every believer in Christ is to observe the Biblical Feasts, they go ballistic and insist the Feasts were only for the Jews. But, this is untrue. As mentioned above, Numbers 15 tells us YHWH said that the alien who joins Israel must do exactly as Israel when it comes to worshipping God. Therefore, the "alien" (Christians who are grafted in to Israel) are required to keep the Feasts.
Yeshua so far only fulfilled the first four of the seven Feasts, with the next one to be fulfilled being what Christians term "the rapture". How did "Jesus" fulfill Christmas and Easter when these "holidays" can't be backed up by Scripture and He wasn't even born in December, or resurrected on "Easter Sunday"? The Bible reveals He was born during Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles), died on 14 Nisan (Passover) and resurrected exactly three days later at the end of the seventh day Sabbath. (As an aside, the Israelites were led out of Egypt and given physical liberation on 14 Nisan/Passover (Exodus 12:1-13) which foreshadowed Yeshua, the Passover Lamb whose death provided spiritual liberation [see Matthew, Mark, Luke and John]. Also, many of the European concentration camps were liberated on or around 14 Nisan, and Hitler committed suicide during this timeframe [April 30, 1945]. Coincidence?....)
Putting it all into perspective:
Anti-Jew/anti-Israel rhetoric has always been in vogue since the day Yeshua was executed on the stake. Millions of Jews have been killed "in the Name of Jesus" and the vice-like grip of world anti-Semitism continues to squeeze a little harder with each passing year. The Middle East situation rages on with ever-growing tensions between Israel and the Muslim nations - and the world, more and more, has chosen to "side" with the Muslims. In order to appease Muslims (who have absolutely no right to The Land in YHWH's eyes) the powers-that-be have divided Israel to the point where her original borders have been basically forgotten.
None of our leaders, Christian or otherwise, are taking into account the Bible prophecies concerning these matters, including the fact that YHWH, via the Abrahamic Covenant, gave permanent ownership of the land of Canaan to the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (Genesis 17:7-8). All this trouble is the result of man's continued disobedience YHWH! A lot of heartache in this world could have been prevented if man had only been willing to do their Creator's Will.
Christians, Muslims, atheists and people from all walks of life are aiding Satan in his quest to annihilate Israel and the Jews - as evidenced by the actions of the Geneva-based World Council of Churches which recently announced the launch of a planet-wide crusade to bring churches into alliance against the Jews' "occupation" of Israel's biblical lands; and the Vatican's recent announcement that Pope Benedict XVI apparently intends to authorize the return of the controversial Latin Mass, despite its profoundly anti-Semitic elements - which includes references to "perfidious" Jews and other anti-Jewish slurs.
The above is not surprising when viewed from a Biblical perspective. After all, the Bible tells us that the whole world will hate Israel in the end times. Israel will be invaded (Ezekiel chapters 38-39); the Antichrist will break his seven-year covenant with Israel; and worldwide persecution of Israel will result (Daniel 9:27; 12:1, 11; Zechariah 11:16; Matthew 24:15, 21; Revelation 12:13). The bottom line is that the Pope and the Christian "World Council of Churches" are merely players in Satan's chess game - and apparently willing players, at that....
How can this be when each of these churches are supposedly following the Bible? The answer is: Man has been disobeying ADONAI since the beginning of time, and he's still doing it! Why? Because he's taken God's Word and twisted into something more suitable, more comfortable, something he can fit into his lifestyle without getting his hands dirty. Unfortunately, by using his limited human mindset to interpret the Word of YHWH, man has basically written his own ticket to hell.
No matter what signs and wonders he's performed or the prophecies he's spoken "in the name of God", man's "Lord, Lord, look what I did for you!" won't cut it on Judgment Day because all He will be interested in is whether or not you obeyed His "forever" commandments and believed in the Messiah He sent to be our Final Sin Sacrifice. He's not going to be very "understanding" of the fact that you misinterpreted, misunderstood or outright ignored His Torah, especially since He's provided plenty of Scriptures to get our attention!
What "misinterpretation" are Christians and Catholics guilty of? Let us count the ways:
- Borrowing the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and immediately changing His Word to reflect "another Gospel" - one that does not include His original, divine teachings (Torah).
- Misinterpreting the difference between "the law" (rabbinical rules and concepts) and "Torah" (YHWH's Divine Instructions in Righteousness) and insisting that "Jesus" nailed them to the cross.
- Changing YHWH's moedim - His appointed times/feasts and the seventh day Sabbath.
- Giving Y'shua a new name, a new birthday, a bogus resurrection date, and basically turning Him into a blond, blue-eyed adonis who in no way resembles the Jewish Torah observant, tallit-wearing, seventh day Sabbath and Feast-keeping, kosher Jew.
- Insisting "the Jews" are going to hell because of their refusal to "believe" in the Christian God who supposedly abolished Torah, His seventh-day Sabbath and the Biblical Feasts....
Many Christians, especially those who consider themselves "White Supremacists" and their ilk have adopted "replacement theology", insisting that because the Jews disobeyed God, He rejected them, scattered them into the nations, and replaced them with "the church". While it's true that YHWH did scatter the Jews (Genesis 28:10-15), many don't realize that, if Jews hadn't been scattered into the nations, the world would never have heard of YHWH or Yeshua! But, in the meantime, He NEVER "replaced" the Jews. The Bible tells us that believers in Messiah Yeshua are "grafted in" to the Olive Tree (Israel), not the other way around (Romans 11:13-17, Romans 11:24).
Yeshua Himself said that all the things talked about in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled. What does all of this mean to Christians? If God promised Israel that land and reneges on His promise, then He might renege on your promise of salvation as well.
Romans 9:4-5 "Israelites to who belongs the adoption as sons and the glory and the covenants and the giving of the Law and the temple service and the promises, whose are the fathers, and from whom is the Christ according to the flesh, who is over all...."
While once it was the Crusader and the Grand Inquisitor and the Nazi, today it is the Imam and the Islamic Cleric and the President of Iran who have called for the destruction of Israel and the Jews. Unfortunately, however, Satan is still alive and well in the church spouting such lies from the pits of hell as "replacement theology", that the church has somehow replaced Israel and that the Jews don't belong in the Land. However, the Bible clearly tells us Israel was an everlasting possession (Genesis 17:7-8). That means forever.
This was reiterated when an Angel of the Lord said; "I brought you up out of Egypt and led you into the land which I have sworn to your fathers and I said I will never break my covenant" (Judges 2:1). God keeps His promises that He confirmed to Israel as an everlasting covenant (Psalm105:6-11) and He says that the offspring of Israel will cease from being a nation when the fixed order of the sun, the moon and the stars departs (Jeremiah 31:35-37).
Deuteronomy 7: 6 For you are a people set apart as holy for ADONAI your God. ADONAI your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his own unique treasure. 7 ADONAI didn't set his heart on you or choose you because you numbered more than any other people - on the contrary, you were the fewest of all peoples. 8 Rather, it was because ADONAI loved you, and because he wanted to keep the oath which he had sworn to your ancestors, that ADONAI brought you out with a strong hand and redeemed you from a life of slavery under the hand of Pharoah king of Egypt.
Did ADONAI ever suggest that the "Gentiles" would one day replace the Jews as God's Chosen? No!
Genesis 12: 3 "I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you."
The God of Israel says that He will bring to judgment those nations that divide the land of Israel:
Joel 3: 1 "For behold, in those days and at that time, when I bring back the captives of Judah and Jerusalem, 2 I will also gather all nations, and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; and I will enter into judgment with them there on account of My people, My heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations; they have also divided up My land. 3 They have cast lots for My people, have given a boy in exchange for a harlot, and sold a girl for wine, that they may drink.
"White Supremacists" like to justify their hatred of the Jews because "the Jews killed Jesus." Perhaps they need to ask themselves: Who nailed Him to the cross? It was the Romans! Why was He nailed to the cross? Because He offered Himself up as the FINAL SIN SACRIFICE for all sinners! Why did He agree die? For the SIN OF ALL! If Yeshua hadn't done this, then we would ALL be headed for hell - including the "White Supremacists" who wouldn't even have a "Jesus" if it weren't for "the Jews"....
Let's always remember that Yeshua HAD to die to offer eternal life to the believers of this world. Let's remember that if God hadn't scattered the Jews, then nobody on earth, except tiny Israel would ever have known about YHWH, our Creator! There certainly wouldn't be any "Christians" because - had they never heard of YHWH - they never would have heard about His Son Yeshua who came to die in exchange for our sins!
Let's always remember that God gave us a new (or rather, "renewed" covenant; NOT a new Torah! Covenants can change; YHWH's laws do not!
Let's also remember that the entire Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, is the unfolding of YHWH's "Big Picture". HE is God; WE are His Creation. He tells us what to do; our job is to obey. When we obey, we reap God's blessings. When we disobey, we end up with only our big toes dipped in God's "swimming pool" and staying on the sidelines while the TRUE believers who have immersed themselves with Truth are being used to further His ultimate agenda - which is to usher in His Kingdom.
Judging by world events, especially in the Middle East, we ARE in the "end times" as outlined in the Books of Daniel and Revelation. The time is short; it's a quarter till midnight. Instead of fighting the knowledge that God has placed before us, a true believer should welcome it - and the blessings that are sure to follow.