The Day After

The Day After

The election is over. The campaigning is done. The counting is complete (in most cases) and the winners and losers have been declared. Now the pundits will analyze and scrutinize and tell us what really happened or not (In most cases these pundits are no longer part of the process because somewhere along the way they or their candidates lost.  Maybe they aren’t experts after all.)

I can’t speak for you but as for myself I already know what happened. It’s explained in the Bible book of Daniel. Daniel, a Jewish follower of the Most High God in pagan Babylon, has just been given the interpretation of King Nebuchadnezzar’s dream by the aforementioned Most High God. In Daniel 2:20-22 we get a glimpse of what happens behind the scenes, beneath the ballot box, even beyond the smoke-filled rooms that politics is known for. It reads:

20Daniel answered and said: “Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, to whom belong wisdom and might. 21He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding; 22he reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what is in the darkness, and the light dwells with him. – Daniel 2:20–22

Fire the talking heads. Here’s what really happens. It is God who changes the times and the seasons. He holds that prerogative in His hand. It is also God who removes kings and sets up kings. This shouldn’t surprise us. The Most High God of the Universe is after all the Most High God of the Universe. His plans and His purpose are behind everything that happens. He is firmly and completely in control.

The bottom line is that it is God who has the final say in who gets to govern and when they get to govern and for how long they get to govern. In a democracy, from this side of heaven, it may appear we elect our leaders. In reality, it is the Lord who selects our leaders. That is a pretty heavy thought for the day after.

Oh, and one more thing.  God also directs the leaders He selects. Proverbs 21:1 say “The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord; he turns it wherever he will.” The unseen hand of God is at work diverting the decisions in the State House and the White House in the direction that works with His ultimate plans and purposes.

This truth should drive us to our knees in fervent prayer for God’s work in the hearts of our leaders. Paul writes 1 Timothy during the reign of the Roman Empire in general and the immoral Emperor Nero in specific (37 AD – 67 AD).  In that letter to Timothy, his son in the faith, he says:

“First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. – 1 Timothy 2:1–2.

Today in our country our “kings and those in high positions” are Presidents, Vice President, Senators, Congressmen and Congresswomen, Governors, State Senators, Assemblymen and Assemblywomen and Mayors and Councilmen and Councilwomen. No matter their party affiliation we are obligated to pray for them so that we might lead a quiet and peaceful life and so that they might find salvation for God desires all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth (1 Timothy 2:4)

In Isaiah 6 the Old Testament Prophet Isaiah had a vision which gives us some amazing insight on political leaders and political change. Isaiah 6 begins “In the year that King Uzziah died”.  King Uzziah had ruled over Judah, the Southern Kingdom of divided Israel, for 52 years. His reign was so prosperous that it came to be known as the “Golden Age of Judah”. Can you imagine how distraught everyone would be with his death and the changing of the guard. The uncertainty alone would have caused panic on the Jerusalem Stock exchange. The next words of Isaiah 6 put everything in perspective. The prophet say’s “I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train of his robe filled the temple.” I take great comfort in this verse. The election is over but it is not the democrats or the republicans who hold the power. It is the Lord. This day after the election, the Lord is still on the throne and He will be on the next day after as well. Amen

Blessings

Pastor Dave Watson

This weekend at Calvary Chapel, November 2nd – 4th, 2018 -“Living iSmart in an eStupid World” – Part 9 – iWork

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Like last week, from this coming Thursday night, November 1st at 6:00 P.M., to this coming Friday night November 2nd at 6:00 P.M., we are calling our church family to fast and pray regarding our nation, or city, our community, our church and our Fall program. We are designating the Friday’s in September/October/November as our “Fasting Friday”and we are asking as many as can to join us at “In His Presence” for our all church prayer meeting from 8:00 P.M. – 9:30 P.M. on Fridays. At that meeting each week we will be sharing a message on “Fasting for Spiritual Break Throughs”. “Nothing of eternal consequence is ever accomplished apart from prayer.” Light foods will be provided this week so please break the fast with us from 6 P.M. – 8 P.M. Please make the time for both individual and corporate prayer. It will change us individually and corporately and it will change the world.

Friday, November 2nd, 2018

8:00 P.M – In His Presence – All Church Prayer Meeting

8:00 P.M. – DIVAS and CHAMPIONS – For young men and women Junior High through High School

Saturday, November 3rd, 2018

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Sunday, November 4th , 2018

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9:00 A.M. – Worship Celebration – Message from Pastor Dave Watson – “iWork”

10:15 A.M. – Angie’s Connection Café

Life Groups
Youth Life – Teens
THRIVE – Young Adults
BLAST – Adults

11:15 A.M. –Worship Celebration – Message from Pastor Dave Watson – “iWork”

Spanish Service – 1:00 P.M. – Iglesia El Calvario – Sanctaury

Our 11:15 A.M. Worship Service is streamed live at http://www.calvarychapelsi.org and facebook at @calvarychapelsi and is also carried live on 570AM The Mission and at http://www.wmca.com and http://www.iheartradio.com, beginning at 11:30 A.M.

Anti-Semitism in Pittsburgh

The hideous mass shooting this past Saturday at the Tree of Life Synagogue (L’Simcha Congregation) in Pittsburgh has reminded us that the ugly bigotry of anti-Semitism is still in our midst. It sits and waits in the grass like an insidious serpent. It looks for an opportune moment to raise its dreadful head and then it strikes.

When it struck this past weekend in the person of a lone gunman, 11 lives were snuffed out and 6 others were wounded including four law enforcement officers. All those who perished were Jewish and over the age of 50. The names of those who lost their lives are:

Richard Gottfried, 65

Rose Mallinger, 97

Jerry Rabinowitz, 66

Cecil Rosenthal, 59

David Rosenthal, 54 (brother of Cecil)

Bernice Simon, 84

Sylvan Simon, 86 (husband of Bernice)

Daniel Stein, 71

Melvin Wax, 88

Irving Younger, 69

Their families are in great need of our prayers.

Anti-Semitism is horrid, sickening and demonic. From the perspective of those who read and believe the Bible it is also an age-old problem. In Genesis 12 we see the LORD God choosing a man named Abram (Exalted father), later God renamed him Abraham (Father of multitudes) to bring about a nation of His own, a chosen people. Later in Genesis 15 we see the LORD God making a covenant with Abraham, a promise of the LORD’s commitment to Abraham and to his seed. From that day forward there has been opposition to this chosen people.

Anti-Semitism is as old as the nation of Israel. One of the times it raises it head is in Numbers 22-24 when the Moabite King Balak tries in vain to get the prophet for hire Balaam to curse Israel. Balak was afraid of the Jews so out of that fear he sought to have them divinely cursed. After many attempts, Balaam gives up and says of the nation of Israel, “Blessed are those who bless you, and cursed are those who curse you.”(Numbers 24:9) hereby restating God’s promises in Genesis 12:1-3. People, leaders, and even nations are still afraid of the Jewish people and thus anti-Semitism has still found a place 3500 years after Balak.

Multiple times through the years anti-Semitism has raised its head with reference to Israel though her cousin the Edomites. Abraham, the father of the nation of Israel had two sons, Ishmael and Isaac. Isaac is the son of promise whereas Ishmael is the son born out of impatience. Isaac has two sons, Jacob and Esau. Jacob is later renamed Israel (prince with God) and it is from him and his 12 sons (thus the 12 tribes of Israel) that the people of God multiply. Esau is the father of the Edomites.

In Psalm 137:7 we read of the anti-Semitism of Edom at the time of the Babylonian invasion that left Jerusalem in ruins (586 BC). The text says “Remember, O Lord, against the Edomites the day of Jerusalem, how they said, “Lay it bare, lay it bare, down to its foundations!” The Edomites were jealous of Israel and thus they rooted against God’s chosen people. The tiny book of Obadiah (only 21 verses) chronicles the Edomites’ anti-Semitism and the price they will pay for it. Their jealousy will be remembered in the day of the LORD. People, leaders, and even nations are still jealous of the Jewish people and thus anti-Semitism has still found a place 2500 years after the Edomites.

One of the more familiar cases of anti-Semitism raising its head is found in the book of Esther. The main anti-Semite was a man named Haman who had come to hate one Jew, Mordecai, in particular and by extension wanted to have all Jews destroyed. He went as far as getting an order of mass execution for all the Jews in the Persian Empire. Note his reasoning in Esther 3:8 – Then Haman said to King Ahasuerus, “There is a certain people scattered abroad and dispersed among the peoples in all the provinces of your kingdom. Their laws are different from those of every other people, and they do not keep the king’s laws, so that it is not to the king’s profit to tolerate them.” This bigotry and hatred is turned around by God through Queen Esther, herself a Jew, with the product being Haman’s hanging, Mordecai being promoted, and the Jews’ preservation. People, leaders, and even nations are still hating the Jewish people and thus anti-Semitism has still found a place 2400 years after Haman.

We could chronicle anti-Semitism throughout the Scriptures, but’s let’s fast forward to the last book of the Bible, Revelation. It contains an interesting and powerful vison in reference to anti-Semitism and its source. Please read the text below.

Revelation 12:1–6

1And a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars.

2She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pains and the agony of giving birth.

3And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems.

4His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child he might devour it.

5She gave birth to a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron, but her child was caught up to God and to his throne,

6and the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, in which she is to be nourished for 1,260 days.

I believe the Woman here is the nation of Israel. I am sure the great dragon is none other than Satan (See Revelation 12:7ff). The child of the woman I believe to be the Christ, the Messiah. The Woman needed protection from the Dragon and so did her Child. The anti-Semitism here is demonically initiated from the Devil himself against Israel because she is the vessel though which the Messiah and His kingdom come. Is it possible that the Jewish people in the past, present, and into the future will experience anti-Semitism not just because of fear, jealousy and hatred but because Satan himself is involved seeking to thwart God’s plan? I think the answer is a resounding yes. The Jews who have given us the Scriptures, the moral Law of God (The Ten Commandments) and the Messiah are the target of Satan and his minions here on earth and will be until the day of our Lord’s coming.

In light of this age-old problem and the recent acts of anti-Semitism, what should we do as serious followers of Christ? Let me suggest a few simple things.

  1. We need to know our Jewish neighbors in our community. We should be praying for their safety for they are a target. We should let them know in word and deed that we are concerned for them.
  1. We need to pray for the safety of the synagogues and Rabbi’s in our community. If things escalate any further, we need to consider forming human chains around these houses of worship on the Sabbath and especially High Holy Days for protection. The smaller synagogues can’t afford security and law enforcement can’t be everywhere. At the very least, every synagogue and Jewish Community Center should have a virtual prayer covering from us.
  1. We need to pray for the nation of Israel and the Peace of Jerusalem (Psalm 122:6 – Pray for the peace of Jerusalem! “May they be secure who love you!). Israel is surrounded by hostile nations and needs God’s protection.
  2. Evangelical leaders need to dialogue with local Jewish leaders to understand and help with their concerns.
  3. We need to see the Jewish nation and Jewish people from God’s viewpoint. We need to reject theological systems that reject Israel’s place in God’s plans in the future (See Romans 9-11).

In closing, let me say that it takes a certain God-given conviction and courage to stand up against anti-Semitism. Words need to be accompanied by deeds. The kind of conviction and courage needed is demonstrated by the Huguenot Village of Le Chambon-sur-Lignon, France. In 1942, the people of Le Chambon and their Protestant Minister Pastor Andre Trocme were faced with some difficult decisions. The greatest anti-Semitic experiment was happening via Nazi Germany, the extermination of the Jews as a people. France was occupied by Germany at the time and many Jews, particularly children, with Pastor Trocme’s help had found refuge in Le Chambon. When paid a visit by the authorities, a group of students approached the Nazi leader in charge and handed him a letter. Here is the paragraph from this letter I want us to hold on to from these students. We should take great inspiration from it. It embodies the courage and conviction we need to have. They wrote:

“We feel obliged to tell you that there are among us a certain number of Jews. But, we make no distinction between Jews and non-Jews. It is contrary to the Gospel teaching. If our comrades, whose only fault is to be born in another religion, received the order to let themselves be deported, or even examined, they would disobey the order received, and we would try to hide them as best we could. We have Jews. You’re not getting them.

God help us to be that courageous. Amen

Blessings,

Dr. Dave Watson