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News Letter 5849-023
10th day of the 5th month 5849 years after the creation of Adam
The 5th Month in the Fourth year of the third Sabbatical Cycle
The Third Sabbatical Cycle of the 119th Jubilee Cycle
The Sabbatical Cycle of Earthquakes Famines, and Pestilences
July20, 2013

Shabbat Shalom to Royal House of Israel,
We once again remind of the opportunity to join us for Sukkot at Falls Creek Tennessee. Here is the web site if this is of interest to you. Things are filling up though.
http://poasukkot2013.weebly.com

Last week we posted our long News Letter. AS many of you know we work a full time job and work on our next book and the teachings we are preparing for the TV series. We do not always have a lot of time to do extensive editing. I also have one lady who has been helping me for almost two years now. And she is so much help.

Last week in our 3 ½ year Torah Portion, the comments we used included a section on the Trinity. It got past us as we prepared last weeks edition. Here at Sightedmoon.com we do not adhere to the trinity nor teach it or have anything to do with it.

Yehovah is one and that is all that needs to be said. No ya buts.

So we want to apologize for our over site. We know in the future there will be other things we miss or misstate and we pray that you will have the understanding to know we are doing the best we can with the little we have. Mistakes will happen. We also continue to encourage you to be Berrean and study each of the things we share with you to see if they are true or not. And do bring to our attention things we need to correct as well. We are not above correction.

We also received the following comment about last weeks article.

Dear Bro Joseph; Time permitted to read only part of your letter, but it
really caught my attention.

I came to a similar conclusion last Sabbath, that Judgment must begin with
the house of Elohim; there is still too much tolerance for and infatuation
with sex sins. Thank you for warning others away from the sins that we have
ourselves not adequately resisted in time past.

This spring we told you how the Vineyard in Israel was under attack by swarms of Locusts. I did a lot of soul searching over this and many of you asked and wondered why I would want build a vineyard in Israel?
Some of you get it and have helped finance this project. Others talk about it and never help and still other “Brethren” condemn our actions.

After years of searching and raising money to do something in Israel, and with nothing happening and just as we were about to give up on this plan, one year ago at the end of June Boaz and I made contact and came to terms about jointly building this vineyard in Israel. Before Sukkot last fall I and a few others went over and began to hammer in what would become the electric fence. Still others came after sukkot and laid out the water lines and also planted the 2980 grape vine graphs. 10% of which are ours until the Jubilee year of 2045 when they will return to Boaz and Rinah and our agreement comes to a close. All done according to Torah and according to the Laws of the land based on the Sabbatical and Jubilee year cycles.

When we were there it rained for the first time in 7 years in the Negev, which did not go unnoticed by Boaz. That winter it poured and the resulting flood cut off the vineyard for a week or more. Then we had some wind storms and the vines needed to be protected once again after the first protective jackets had blown away. Once this was done then we had severe sand storms, but because we had fixed the jackets our vines survived the winter and the sand storms and the floods.

Then this summer we had the locust and we had swarm after swarm come directly on the vineyard. My heart sunk. Had I done something wrong? Had I misunderstood the direction we were to go here? Why did Yehovah allow this or even why did He send this?

I was extremely saddened and did not know what to make of this. After this I began my studies of Daniels 2300 days and how it ties into the Daniel 9:24-27 teachings I am now preparing. And my depression went deeper and I understood why Daniel was sick for three weeks. ON top of this our work dried up due to the vast amount of rain we have had this spring. We are two months or more behind due to the weather and now the temperature is climbing up to the 100 decree mark making it harder still. But this is part of the curses for not keeping the Sabbatical years so I understand that. But it just was adding to all these other things. And then I hurt my back and have been trying to work with it these past two week. Sitting here typing this news letter is very hard right now. And last night my wife slipped on the sidewalk here and hurt herself.

So that is a lot of what is going on in my head lately. But why all these things took place in the vineyard I had no idea.

Boaz has just replanted the vines and has had a tough go of it this year so far. I am planning on returning to Israel for Passover and at that time I was going to mark out the 10% that belongs to us so that we can compare one section that keeps the Sabbatical years according to the methodology I am espousing from Aviv 2016 to Aviv 2017 to that that Judah does which is from Tishri 2015 to Tishri 2016.

I have been wondering exactly how I would decide which vines to choose for our section. Do I do it by lot or by random choice or taking one row or two. I did not know how to decide this.

The vines also are considered a tree and as such their fruit is considered uncircumcised for 3 years according to Lev 19.

Lev 19:23 And when you shall come into the land, and shall have planted all kinds of trees for food, then you shall count the fruit of them as uncircumcised. It shall be uncircumcised three years to you. It shall not be eaten. 24 But in the fourth year all the fruit of them shall be holy to praise Jehovah. 25 And in the fifth year you shall eat of the fruit of it, so that it may yield to you its increase. I am Jehovah your God.

We planted in the fall of 2012. 2013 now would be our second year and 2014 would be our 3rd year. 2015 to 2016 would then be our 4th year in which all the fruit goes to Yehovah. 2016 would then be our Sabbatical year when we would not harvest of plant or prune the vines.

But with the destruction of the plants by the locust this all changed with the new plants going in the ground in 2013.

Well for all you nay sayers and all of you who have condemned this project I have an email from Boaz this week. I want you to read it and see for your self how Yehovah has decided which section is going to be ours and which is going to belong to Boaz.

When the Locust came they were sent by Yehovah. They are His army.

Here is an update from Boaz and Rinah and what went on with the Vineyard this spring. IN spite of all that took place I am wondering if any one of you can see the miracle that took place here. I do and it is very exciting to see. You can see the pictures and videos at

http://www.shefaisrael.com

“Therefore, behold, I lured her and brought her into the desert, and spoke to her heart. And I gave her vineyards to her from there, and the valley of Achor for a portal of hope. And she shall sing there, as in the days of her youth, and as in the day when she came up out of the land of Egypt. And it shall be at that day, says HASHEM, you shall call Me, My Husband, and shall no more call Me, My Master. For I took away the names of these masters from out of her mouth and she no longer remembered their names. And in that day I made a covenant for them, with the beasts of the field, and with the birds of the heavens, and with the creeping things of the ground. And I will break the bow and the sword and the battle out of the earth, and will make them to lie down safely. And I betrothed you to Me forever. Yea, I betrothed you to Me in righteousness, and in judgment, and in loving-kindness, and in mercies. I even betrothed you to Me in faithfulness as you knew HASHEM. And it was in that day I answered, says HASHEM. I answered the heavens, and they answered the earth, and the earth will answer the grain and the new wine and the choice oil. And they shall answer Jezreel. And I sowed her to Me in the earth. And I had mercy on No-mercy. And I said to Not-my-people, You are My people. And they said, Elohai.” Hosea 2:16-25
Dear Joseph,
As not many realize the extent of the disaster that we faced we felt it fitting at this time to share the experience of the 100 day war as it has come to be known here in our area. Some months ago I was building a shade pergola with a friend of mine atop the enormous dune upon which we live. Tom happened to glance toward the West and said that he could see what looked like a huge fire burning in Egypt. I joined his gaze and soon we saw that it was not a smoke cloud that was approaching us but locusts. They came first one by one but within a few minutes the skies where filled with millions of mature locusts.
We had all heard of locusts and the damage that they can do but to our surprise these millions of locusts were not hungry. They seemed to be coming in an unending stream from Egypt. It took a day or two for the Israeli authorities to establish that the locusts had been gorging themselves in Egypt and were now looking for a place to lay their eggs. The agricultural authorities took the responsibility for spraying. The area that they covered was approximately 900 square kilometers (350 sq. miles). The task was enormous. Crop duster and related vehicles could only work in the afternoons when the locusts came to rest. They did all they can and millions were eradicated but unfortunately only after they had deposited their eggs into the ground. Each female lays up to 300 eggs with 200 being the average. They are one of the most successful breeding machines on the face of the earth!
One morning three weeks later my neighbor called me and said I should come to the vineyard urgently as the vineyard was ‘alive’. Upon arriving in the vineyard we saw that the locusts had successfully laid many eggs not only on our farm but also on my neighbor’s farm. The ground was a black moving carpet of tiny newly hatched locusts. At this time they cannot hop or fly and they were gathering into what would be an eventual swarm. Locusts have amazing communicational abilities and when they swarm their ability to survive just about anything has been seen.
We were in immediate contact with the agricultural authorities who set up an emergency task force. As the invasion was of small hatchlings and deep within our fields we could not use commercial vehicles to spray in fear of damaging existing fields and crops. They sprayed outside our fences but we had to spray our own fields. They supplied the chemicals needed to terminate the locusts. The fight against the walkers was over quickly and with two full days of non-stop spraying we managed to eradicate the walkers.
There was a 24 hour respite and then the invasion of walkers that hatched outside of our fields started. As we were spraying there continued what seemed to be a never ending of millions of small locusts descending upon our farm. They mature within a matter of days and they walk to where they can eat. For the first week the locusts that were coming to us were ones that hatched in Israel but were changing very quickly to yellow hoppers and very hungry ones at that! In the beginning they ate only dry foliage then progressed to semi dry and only when everything else had been consumed did they descend upon the lush vines, the herbs and newly planted olive trees and proceeded to eat everything in sight. In the meanwhile we were spraying from first light until last light in an attempt to save what we could. After two weeks we heard that swarms larger than we could ever imagine had been spotted by radar approaching us – hopping their way into the Promised Land. This is when the real battle started. There were so many locusts that the airplanes could not spray them fast enough. I have never seen so many locusts in my life. This situation carried on for weeks. Day and night we were spraying and would wave to the pilots as they passed low next to our fields. We would also take a break with the drivers of the specialist vehicles involved in the battle.
This hard fight united people from all walks of life in the Land. The locusts then matured to the stage to which they could fly. Those that remained flew away after 90 days, the authorities continued to spray for another 10 days wherever the locusts landed. This time we managed to kill the swarms before they reached sexual maturity. Israel has not seen a swarm like this since 1915. We hope we will never see one like this again in our lifetimes.
After a disaster like this one starts to count the cost. Our loss in the vineyard was over 90% of the vines were not viable. This means that although the root was strong and live the graft was killed by the locusts as they ate all the leaves as well as any bark killing the graft. At the young stage of growth the only option was to replace the vines. So as not to lose a year of our orla count we had to have the vines planted by Tu B’Av which is next Tuesday! By a great miracle the funds for the new vines were provided by the faithful and we are forever thankful for your assistance. May Hashem multiply your generosity.
However the cost of the new vines are just a small part of the losses we suffered through this disaster. Because of the vast sums of money the Israeli government paid out a few years ago for frost damage, they declared that there would be no national cover for natural disasters. This meant that we would not receive any financial compensation from the government. We are ever thankful for the assistance for the plants but we need to be able to recover other expenses such as the additional labor for the preparation and additional water and for the plants. In fact the additional cost amount to more than the costs of the plants.
Rinah and I trust that HASHEM will provide for our needs and as the prophet Joel promised, this has already started by the provision for the new vines.
“And I will restore to you the years which the swarming locust has eaten, the locust larvae, and the stripping locust, and the cutting locust, My great army which I sent among you. And you shall eat in plenty, and be satisfied, and praise the name of HASHEM Elohechem, who has dealt with you wonderfully; and My people shall never be ashamed.” Joel 2: 25,26
When we decided to embark on this project going over all the details with Joe, both of us agreed that this was a Kingdom project and this means that it is not a project that either of us can do on our own. We need your part on an ongoing basis for the next four years to be able to bring the vineyard to the first harvest. We are currently working extremely hard to try and keep the vineyard going as well as to meet our day to day expenses. The only way to ensure the continued success of this Kingdom project will be with the personal involvement of those committed to see the fulfillment of prophecy in these days.
An amazing development took place here in that we were expecting Thai workers to help us plant the vines. At the last moment the plan fell through as these workers had to be elsewhere and we managed to find young Israelis to help us. Some of the boys are before the army and some a little younger. It was hot and the work was hard, but they kept their spirits up and encouraged one another. After the planting we treated the workers to a BBQ and Boaz and I invited them to return to us every season until the harvest and we’ll teach them all about the vineyard. There is a special relationship between man and vines. The next morning as we walked through the field checking the irrigation, we loved seeing their finger marks as they were closing the plants. We felt the Father’s love for His people Israel.
This is a kingdom project indeed.
Those feeling led to contribute can contact us directly or Joe Dumond at admin@sightedmoon.com
Many thanks and blessings
Boaz and Rinah
These Scriptures came into view in the time of our affliction. His rod (The Word) and His staff (His Spirit) they comfort us…
“We went through fire and water, but you brought us to a place of abundance.” Ps. 66:12
We understand that the way to abundance is by way of water and fire. Abundance is often measured in wisdom and knowledge of Himself. Real wisdom comes from the kinds of experiences that come only through the deepest tests. God’s measuring stick is the character and likeness of Messiah in each of us. This cannot be gained through a life of ease and pleasure. Ease and pleasure fail to refine.
Psalm 102 A prayer of the afflicted man. “For HASHEM will have built Zion, He will have appeared in His glory. Let this be recorded for the final generation so that the newborn people will praise Yah. “Most translations speak of the future generation, but it is written in Hebrew concerning the last generation (dor ha’acharon).

Shefa Israel
Working toward building a bridge for the Lost Sheep of Israel to come home.
• Vineyards in the desert
• Tours of Israel – in particular desert tours in ‘the footsteps of our forefathers’
• Coming soon – Shefa Market – an online shop where you will be able to buy exclusicve product made in the area of Kadesh Barnea

We now have a need to raise the funds to pay for the fertilizer and the water bill, which has gone up. We have an ongoing commitment to look after this project until our first harvest in 2017

So did you see the miracle in the letter? Did you see what Yehovah has done?

I have asked Boaz to mark out the 10% of the vines that have survived and designate them to us to which Boaz has agreed and we will discuss this more when I arrive there at Passover. It was actually less than 10% and then Boaz said it was 120 vines. I see this as representing the 120 Jubilee cycles. So now these are set-aside in one row for us; Our 120 that survived the locust and the sand storms and the flood.

I feel Yehovah has chosen these special vines for us. We planted them in 2012, and now we are in our 2nd year of 2013. 2014 will be our 3rd year and 2015 will be the year in which all the fruit goes to Yehovah. 2016 will be our Sabbatical year and then after that we can reap the harvest. Boaz will not be pruning or harvesting his vines in 2014-2015, but we will and that year 100% of the fruit goes to Yehovah. Then in 2016 we will be observing the Sabbatical year and our vines will not be pruned or harvested while at the same time Boaz will prune and harvest his vines, being careful to respect our agreement.

The year Judah keeps as Shmeta will be from Tishri 2014 to Tishri 2015.

Lev 19:23 And when you shall come into the land, and shall have planted all kinds of trees for food, then you shall count the fruit of them as uncircumcised. It shall be uncircumcised three years to you. It shall not be eaten. 24 But in the fourth year all the fruit of them shall be holy to praise Jehovah. 25 And in the fifth year you shall eat of the fruit of it, so that it may yield to you its increase. I am Jehovah your God.

If you can see how Yehovah is working in this vineyard on our behalf then please continue to help us with this project. Yes we also have the TV project underway too now and I do thank you all for your support on both endeavors. Work on the TV side of things has now begun.

Brethren two weeks ago we showed you how the curse of Balaam was being implemented today through the UN and Agenda 21 as they get you to worship nature and not Yehovah. We showed you how they have designed Human rights in order to bring in Lesbian Gay, Transgendered and bi sexual legitimacy into society; At least in western society.

We then last week took this a step further showing you how this curse of Balaam was like the Moab women infiltrating with Israel to cause them to sin and how today 1 in 3 Evangelicals is now hooked on porn. And we looked at that subject and even addressed the subject of disrespecting the husband. I have had some mixed reviews.

This week I want to show you how Daniel 11 is coming alive right in front of your eyes.

Dan 11:36 And the king shall do according to his will. And he shall exalt and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvelous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper until the fury is fulfilled. For that which is decreed shall be done. 37 He will not regard the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god. For he shall magnify himself above all. 38 But in his place he shall honor the god of forces; and a god whom his fathers did not know, he shall honor with gold and silver, and with precious stones and desirable things. 39 So he shall act in the fortresses of the strongholds with a strange god, whom he shall acknowledge. He shall multiply in glory, and he shall cause them to rule over many, and shall divide the land for a price.

Right now the god the beast worships and is using to gain its support from the people is the god of forces. When you look up this god of forces she has a name and it is Cybel. Cyble over time has come to be known as the Virgin Mary, and is today Mary Worship, which the Catholic faith practices. This is what the German and United Nations political leadership are using to gain control over Europe and the world by going through various channels of the Papacy.

The god his fathers never knew is the newest religion on the world scene. Islam. Mohamed only came on the world scene in the 700 CE. A relative new comer.

And it is this religion that is going out to conquer the world right now. This Islamic religion along with the catholic religion are the white horse of Revelation. They conquer with the bow and not with the word or the sword of the mouth as Yehshua does.

We have heard how some are trying to adopt this Islamic faith and bring it into the Christian faith. They call it chrislam. This is the most revolting thing I have come to see. Yet people think they can sway the Islamic people once they come to see the chirstian way of life. They are in for a rude awakening.

It is bad enough to see Christianity full of the polluted doctrines it now has and so far from the original Truths of the Torah that it now does. But then to mix in the Islamic faith as if to say they are all the same and we welcome you, is enough to make you puke.

Those in the west are fast asleep and are living in a dream world detached from all reality. Christians in the Muslim world are hunted and killed at the drop of a hat.

I wrote an article a while back about the Way. Those who followed Yehshua were known as “The Way”. They were never called Christians. Those called Christians were full of pagan practices and kept adding more to include all known religions. It was over time that the true followers were just lumped in with the pagan Christians who were being persecuted. https://sightedmoon.com/sightedmoon_2015/?page_id=273

I am going to ask you to watch the following yourtube from someone who was Islamic and German. Pay close attention to what he says. Stop it and replay it if you have to. Time to wake up now!!!


Published on May 7, 2013
Ex-Muslim apostates in Germany, Nassim Ben Iman who apostatized from Islam and is a German of Arab background. He says that Islam is one of the biggest threats to secular and liberal progressive Europe; Canada, UK, Sweden, Nederlands, the Netherlands, Belgium, Australia, USA, America, United Kingdom, Ireland, Norway, Finland, Swedes, Russia, United States, Wales, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Dutch, France, South Africa, Brazil, and all other European nations and the western world. ??This kind of explains what is going on in the Islam world as atheists, Jews, Christians, Buddhists, Hindus, and humanists are struggling to understand why Islam is so violent. There really is no such thing as Islamophobia. I believe it is only a smokescreen. ??Here is more text from the mirrored video, not mine;??Nassim Ben Iman is one of the best-known apostates of Islam in Germany.??He has written a book of his own experiences entitled: “Der wahre Feind…warum ich kein Terrorist geworden bin” / “The true enemy…why I did not become a terrorist”. In view of the present Islamic terror threat in Germany, his statements about the danger of Islam are more topical than ever.??This ex-Muslim of Arab origin has a lot to tell, and offers us a deep insight into the most peaceful of all religions.??As one of only a very small number, he managed to extract himself from the strict Islamic indoctrination. He tells brutal truths such as “Every Muslim is a potential terrorist”. We have distilled the most important points of an extensive interview with this courageous man which we conducted in May of this year into a ten-minute video, because of the acute terrorism danger.??Warning: this video is not recommended for liberal progressives, Democrats and Maxists Communist whose carefully constructed worldview could, when they watch this film, disintegrate.

The next three videos are to show you what is going on in Europe and in those places where Islam has already taken root.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZDKk15KcqNk&feature=endscreen Welcome To Belgistan — The New Muslim Capital Of Europe

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lxdoztoBEuc THIS IS ISLAM!

In the News this week was the bankruptcy of the City of Detroit Michigan. Detroit’s problems, including US$14-billion in long-term liabilities, cry out for a radical fix. But few expect the federal government to come to the city’s aid.
Its population has plummeted to 700,000 from 1.8 million and the departing residents took with them the city’s tax base. They left behind a glut of foreclosed homes, high crime and a city struggling to provide basic services and meet pension obligations.

The city in the USA with the highest Muslim concentrations is Dearborn Michigan. I am not able to find a connection and there may not be one, but I find it interesting that Dearborn is a suburb of Detroit.

Islam will not compromise with Christianity. It will use it for a while and then it will attack it and kill those who belong to it. This is what the next video shows you. After the removal of Morsi from Office the Christians were blamed and then attacked and killed.

http://www.timesofisrael.com/islamists-throw-youths-off-a-roof-in-egypt/ ‘Islamists throw youths off a ledge in Egypt’

And in typical pagan tradition the Pope has allowed one of his ambassadors to state that Allah is God. Once again trying to mix the two faiths together and to have a common position. But as we have just seen from Egypt, the Muslims will not mix, and they will kill the Christians and any other groups that are not Islamic.

http://my.news.yahoo.com/church-right-to-say-allah-describes-god-says-050155285.html Vatican’s first resident envoy to Malaysia on use of the word, Allah, the beauty of Islam, and on a lighter note, durians…

IN Daniel 9:24-27 and in Daniel 8 about he 2300 days, both revelations to Daniel tell us of the time that is right in front of us when the Islamic religions will attack and kill and plunder those who are known as Christians for 6 ¼ years. For Six and one quarter years, they will rape and kill and take as slaves all of those who are what are today known as Christians. It is during this time that 90% of the USA, 90% of Canada, 90% of the UK, and 90% of Australia and other countries will be destroyed.

This Christian Catholic European Beast power will convert to the Islamic religion in order to take control of the world at which time it will divide the world into ten regions, which Agenda 21 already has in the planning books.

This is why we all need to be telling our brethren and our loved ones to begin to keep the Sabbath and Holy Days and Sabbatical years if we want to have any hope of surviving this until the Messiah comes. If you are not obedient then you can count on being slaughtered.

You can see the growing threat all around us and yet most of you are willingly asleep at the wheel and will not speak out to save your own life let alone those of your family. It is now time to speak out. We are going to be doing this on the TV program and need your help. If you will not do it yourselves, then help me to do it for you.

We continue this weekend with our regular Triennial Torah reading which can be found at?https://sightedmoon.com/sightedmoon_2015/files/TriennialCycleBeginningAviv.pdf

20/07/2013 Deut 27 2 Chron 12-14 Revelation 4-6

Law Inscribed on Massive Stones; Curses From Mount Ebal (Deuteronomy 27)
God commands Israel to set up an altar and write all the words of the Book of the Law on large plastered stones, virtual walls of stone, when they cross over the Jordan River to occupy the land (verses 1-10). Joshua 8:30-35 records that Joshua obeyed this command. Paul later refers to what was written on the massive stones as the “ministry of death, written and engraved on stones” (2 Corinthians 3:7). This “ministry” or, in more current terminology, “administration” of death refers to the civil law code which administered the penalties, including the death penalty, for certain violations, as spelled out in the statutes and judgments. The Church today is not to carry out the death penalty. This is the job of civil authorities (Romans 13:1-4). Rather, the ministry of the Church is to preach reconciliation and eternal life (compare 2 Corinthians 3:1-18; 5:18-21).

God commanded Israel to proclaim the blessings for obedience on Mount Gerizim, and the curses for disobedience on Mount Ebal (verses 11-13). The Nelson Study Bible notes: “Mount Ebal was north of Mount Gerizim (vv. 12, 13). Between the two mountains was the city of Shechem (Gen. 12:6, 7; 33:18-20). Shechem and its two mountains are roughly in the center of the land of Canaan” (note on 27:4). Adding more detail: “Ebal and Gerizim are two important peaks in central Canaan flanking an east-west pass through the north-central hill country. Almost the entire Promised Land is visible from the top of Mount Ebal” (note on Joshua 8:30). Revealing more: “The Lord used the topography of the land for dramatic, visual effect. Mount Ebal, because of topographical and climatic conditions, is normally a barren peak while Mount Gerizim is usually covered with vegetation. Consequently, Mount Ebal was an ideal place for the curses to be recited, and Mount Gerizim was suitable for the blessings. The association of the place and the word would have been unforgettable. Furthermore, the two mountains are quite close [rising up on opposite sides of Shechem], so they would serve as a natural amphitheater for the recitation of the curses and blessings by the Levites” (note on Deuteronomy 24:11-14).

This is also where the massive engraved stones and accompanying altar would be set up (Joshua 8:30-35). Disobedience would bring “curses” or punishment from God. Twelve curses were proclaimed to which the people were to respond. Disobedient conduct included: idolatry (verse 15); disrespectful conduct towards parents (verse 16; compare verses 20, 22); dishonest, deceitful and violent conduct toward one’s neighbor (verses 17, 24-25); improper conduct towards the handicapped or the poor (verses 18-19); and sexual perversions (verses 20-23). The people were to confirm that these actions were in fact worthy of punishment—not just in responding with “Amen” but, more importantly, by living in accordance with the law that forbade them (verse 26).

Asa, Nadab, Baasha (2 Chronicles 14:1-8; 1 Kings 14:19-20; 15:9-11, 25-34)
The war between Abijam and Jeroboam set up a period of peace for Abijam’s successor, Asa. One of the most righteous and zealous kings of Judah during much of his reign, Asa carried out extensive reforms, which we will see more about in our next reading. For turning to God, Asa was blessed with an entire decade of peace, during which he was able to fortify the kingdom.

But while Asa was enjoying quiet, the kingdom of Israel was suffering great internal turmoil. In Asa’s second year, the independent northern kingdom lost its founding king. Then Jeroboam’s son Nadab lasted less than two years before the first of Israel’s seven changes of dynasty took place. As prophesied by Ahijah (1 Kings 14:10), Baasha was very thorough in getting rid of Jeroboam’s descendants. But he did not prove to be any better at obeying God.

Asa’s Faith and Reforms (2 Chronicles 14:9-15:19; 1 Kings 15:12-15)
After 10 years of peace, Judah was challenged by an enormous Ethiopian army of a million men. Since Egypt was strong at this time—in the wake of Pharaoh Shishak’s reign, during which the Ethiopians fought for the Egyptians (2 Chronicles 12:3)—it is likely that Zerah and his forces were mercenaries of Egypt.

This battle takes place about 25 miles southwest of Jerusalem at Mareshah. Thanks to the intervention of God (2 Chronicles 14:12), Asa miraculously defeats the million-man army and pursues the fleeing remnants to Gerar, another 25 miles further to the southwest. Asa’s reliance on God and subsequent victory, his response to the encouragement of the prophet and his revival of temple worship encourage many in the northern kingdom to “defect” to him.

The King James Version refers to Maachah, daughter (granddaughter) of Absalom, as the “mother” of Asa (1 Kings 15:13)—and that is the literal Hebrew. Yet she is also listed as the mother of Asa’s father Abijam. The New King James Version therefore substitutes “grandmother” in verse 13. Apparently something happened to Asa’s real mother, and the fact that his grandmother is referred to as his mother could imply that he was actually reared by his grandmother. It is a tribute to Asa’s character that he recognized her idolatry and deposed her from the honored position of queen mother, which she continued to hold from Abijam’s reign.

Revelation 4

In Chapter four, John is called up to a higher realm to be shown what is to happen. He is in the Spirit to be able to see, hear, and experience what takes place. The voice he hears he describes to be like a trumpet. He saw a throne and the Holy One sitting upon the throne. He describes the Holy One in terms of gemstones and colors: jasper, ruby, and a rainbow like an emerald.

There were also twenty four other thrones around the Throne of the Holy One and twenty four elders sitting upon those thrones wearing white robes and crowns upon their heads.

He also saw seven lamps which are, he says, the seven Spirits of Elohim. Also before the throne was a sea of glass. In the midst of them all were the four creatures: one like a lion, one like a calf, one like a man, and one like a flying eagle. They worshipped and praised Elohim day and night without ceasing.

Revelation 5

The Holy One was holding a scroll in His Right Hand. It was written on front and back. It was sealed with seven seals. A messenger with a loud voice asks a question, “Who is worthy to open the scroll and break the seals?” And there was no one found worthy, not in heaven or earth. Then it was made plain, that the One who overcame all is worthy to open the scroll and break the seals. The Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David is worthy and has overcome.

John then saw the Lamb in their midst. Standing in the midst and He came and took the scroll out of the right Hand of the Holy One sitting upon the Throne. When He held the scroll, the elders and the living creatures fell down before Him and they were holding a harp, golden bowls filled with incense (prayers of the set apart ones).

They sang, “You are worthy to take the scroll, and to open its seals, because You were slain and have redeemed us to Elohim by Your blood out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation, and made us sovereigns and priests to our Elohim, and we shall reign upon the earth.”

Then myriads upon myriads John heard proclaiming along with the living creatures, the elders, and every living creature of all kinds worshipping and praising the Lamb.

Revelation 6

The Lamb now opens one of the seals. This released the white horse rider. He is an archer and he went out to conquer.

The Lamb opens the second seal, releasing the red horse rider that takes peace from the earth. He wields a great sword.

The Lamb opens the third seal, releasing the black horse rider and he has scales in his hand and is measuring money against food, indicating poverty and famine.

The Lamb opens the fourth seal, releasing the pale horse rider and he has a name which is Death. Authority was given him to kill one fourth of the earth by all means: war, hunger, death, and pestilence.

The Lamb opens the fifth seal. John sees the slain righteous under the altar. They were killed because of their testimony and witness. Their blood was crying out for vengeance. They received white robes and were told to rest a little longer until all the others who are to die as they did… were finished.

The Lamb opens the sixth seal. There was a great earthquake, the sun black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon as blood. The stars fell. Heaven departed and every mountain and island moved out of its place. Everyone tried to hide from the wrath of the Lamb.

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