|Having a Strong Connection With God / Right Prayer and Meditation
|This Week in the News
|Is Jesus Christ the archangel Michael?
|Preaching the Gospel and Feeding the Flock
Having a Strong Connection With God / Right Prayer and Meditation
On December 23, 2023, Christoph Sperzel will give the first split sermon, titled, “Having a Strong Connection With God,” and Norbert Link will give the second split sermon, titled, “Right Prayer and Meditation.”
The live services are available, over video and audio, at http://eternalgod.org/live-services/ (12:30 pm Pacific Time; 1:30 pm Mountain Time; 2:30 pm Central Time; 3:30 pm Eastern Time; 8:30 pm Greenwich Mean Time; 9:30 pm Central European Time). Just click on Connect to Live Stream.
by Dave Harris
The Book of Revelation is written specifically to the Church of God (Revelation 1:1). Jesus Christ addresses the Church with messages that apply to seven distinct eras of the Church (Revelation 2 & 3). While much is historical, there are also key warnings for the Church of God during the time of the end of this age—both contemporary and prophetic.
The Book of Revelation also describes cataclysmic world events leading to God’s intervention and the return of Jesus Christ. Very few people truly understand the meaning of today’s news in the light of biblical prophecy. It seems that fewer yet are preparing for what is coming.
The Apostle Paul wrote to remind the Church of the example of those whom Moses led, but who refused to obey God and were destroyed:
“Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come. Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall” (1 Corinthians 10:11-12).
Paul wrote this to the Church of God some two-thousand years ago. Was he wrong to warn Christians about events which still lay far into the future? Quite the contrary, for each one whom God has called must be found worthy to enter the Kingdom of God—regardless of when they live!
Paul writes about the role of love—putting it in the context of how to prepare for and be ready for the return of Jesus:
“And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts” (Romans 13:11-14).
We need to understand who we are from God’s viewpoint:
“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy” (1 Peter 2:9-10).
Do we really believe that this is who we are? Do we really believe that we are living in the time of the end of the age?
If we do, then let’s pay close attention to what God tells us about the time and the society in which we are living and what we should be doing:
“And I heard another voice from heaven saying, ‘Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues’” (Revelation 18:4).
by Norbert Link
We begin with prophetically relevant developments regarding Israel; address the shameful verdict against Guiliani and Trump’s “unwise” choice of words; the highly controversial and “flawed” decision by the Supreme Court of Colorado against Trump; the “slow-moving car crash” of Joe Biden; the decline of liberty and freedom in America; and we discuss the miserable situation in Germany, due to the government’s blunders, and the cry for a missing leadership figure in Germany. Please see our new StandingWatch program, titled, “Germany in Turmoil… Under a Failing Government.”
We address Putin’s claims regarding the West and Ukraine; and frightening parallels with the events in the 1940s. We conclude with more blasphemous woke nonsense and the Pope’s endorsement of blessings for same-sex couples.
Throughout this section, we have underlined pertinent statements in the quoted articles, for the convenience and quick overview of the reader.
This Week in the News
Hamas’s Rockets Endanger Dome of the Rock and Al Aqsa Mosque
Breitbart wrote on December 15:
“The Palestinian terrorist group Hamas fired rockets toward Jerusalem on Friday evening, as both Jews and Muslims were participating in prayers, endangering the Dome of the Rock, the Western Wall, and the Al-Aqsa Mosque. The rockets were intercepted and disabled by Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system…
‘Though this is not the first time rockets have targeted Jerusalem, it is thought that Hamas avoids targeting the city because of the danger that it will damage one of the Islamic holy sites — though it is likely it would blame Israel, anyway, if it happened to do so.”
Inasmuch as a temple will be built on the Temple Mount, prior to Christ’s return, where the first and the second temples stood, an “accidental” rocket destroying the Dome of the Rock and/or the Al Aqsa mosque could easily pave the way for the erection of the prophesied Third Temple.
Israel Under Pressure
The Associated Press wrote on December 15:
‘The Israeli military on Friday mistakenly killed three Israeli hostages during its ground operation in the Gaza Strip… The army’s chief spokesman… said Israeli troops found the hostages and erroneously identified them as a threat. He said it was not clear if they had escaped their captors or been abandoned…
“The offensive, triggered by the unprecedented Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel, has flattened much of northern Gaza and driven 80% of Gaza’s population of 2.3 million from their homes. Displaced people have squeezed into shelters mainly in the south in a spiraling humanitarian crisis…
“The U.S. has said it eventually wants to see the West Bank and Gaza under a unified Palestinian government as a precursor to a Palestinian state — an idea soundly rejected by Netanyahu, who leads a right-wing government that is opposed to Palestinian statehood…”
Breitbart wrote on December 16:
“The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) revealed Saturday after an inquiry that the three hostages who were mistakenly killed on Friday were shirtless, waving white flags, and calling in Hebrew, and were shot by soldiers who thought they were being lured into a trap. The hostages had emerged at 10:00 a.m. One of the soldiers who saw them shouted ‘Terrorists!’ upon seeing them. The soldiers opened fire — against protocol, which forbid firing on someone with a white flag. They killed two, and wounded the third, who ran into a building and continued shouting for help in Hebrew. A battalion commander ordered them to stop firing, but they kept on shooting, killing him…
“In addition, soldiers had found graffiti earlier in the week on a building that read “SOS – three hostages” in Hebrew. They believed the building to be booby-trapped, as many other buildings have been…
“The soldiers who fired on the hostages are reported to be receiving psychological counseling, according to the Times of Israel. A ‘darkness’ had fallen on the nation in the wake of the tragedy, according to Israel’s Army Radio, as the nation mourned the deaths of the hostages — and wondered what might have been, had the soldiers arrested them rather than shooting toward them.
“Had the hostages been rescued, Israel would have won a major psychological victory in the war. Support for military efforts to free the hostages would have risen, and Israel would have been more confident in resisting pressure from the U.S. to stop the war. Now, the confidence of the nation in a military approach to freeing the hostages has been damaged, and there is intense pressure — internal and, no doubt, external — to resume negotiations with Hamas via Qatar, despite the risk to the overall military mission.
“The Times of Israel notes that political differences, suppressed during the war so far, have burst into the open again, with many blaming Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for the tragedy, though there is no connection between any policy and the event…
“But political commentator Caroline Glick observed there was a very real risk that the tragic deaths of the hostages could derail the entire effort, as happened twenty-five years ago when the deaths of four soldiers in Lebanon triggered a protest movement…
“The incident illustrates the success of Hamas’s tactics of psychological warfare — both on the troops in the field, and on Israeli leaders. Fake ‘hostages’ leading to deadly booby traps and ambushes conditioned IDF soldiers to fire at real hostages. That will, in turn, make it more difficult for soldiers to fire on actual terrorists in future. Moreover, Hamas has succeeded in dividing Israeli society once again, and likely increasing external pressure from the U.S. to stop the war, possibly sparing the terrorist group.
“In the interim, the suffering continues: the Hostages and Families Forum announced Saturday that another Israeli hostage, Inbar Haiman, 27, was found to have been murdered by Hamas in captivity. The circumstances of her death were not released…’
The accidental killing of hostages is most certainly not helping Israel’s cause. The horrific scenes of utterly devastated and destroyed buildings and the horrible suffering of large portions of the Gaza population does not score in Israel’s favor either.
Newsweek wrote on December 18:
“Israel has edged closer to an all-out war with the Lebanese Hezbollah movement amid a worsening round of hostilities playing out as the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) is already engaged in its most intensive conflict to date in the Gaza Strip, an IDF official has said.”
Turning Into All-Out Disaster?
The New York Post wrote on December 16:
“Over the many years they have been in the public eye, Joe Biden and Benjamin Netanyahu were never friends and rarely allies…Then suddenly, terrorism brought them together in something of a shotgun wedding… The president’s initial support for the Jewish state was firm, but it put him in a bind with major elements of the Democratic Party… His decision to undercut Israel during an existential war in hopes of winning back young voters and Muslim Americans is politics at its cheapest. It makes Biden look craven, as if he has neither courage nor conviction…
‘That’s not to suggest Biden has totally abandoned Israel. The two carrier groups he dispatched are still in the region and he’s still sending military supplies. Indeed, the president went around Congress for the latest shipment when lawmakers moved too slowly. But there’s no denying he’s been giving Israel help with one hand and slapping it with the other… Biden’s criticism reached a new low last week when, in remarks to donors, most of them reportedly Jewish, he actually accused Israel of ‘indiscriminate’ bombing…
“The heart of the problem, of course, is that Biden came into office sleepwalking in lockstep with the Obama-Biden administration’s bid to lure Iran back into the world order. The effort failed as predicted, yet not before Iran benefitted from having billions of its dollars unfrozen and realized a second bonanza through its oil sales.
“Yet even now, despite the fact that much of that money went to Hamas and Hezbollah, the Houthis and scores of other malignant forces, Biden apparently remains convinced the mullahs will one day sit down with Israel and the US around a campfire…”
Iran will remain Israel’s and America’s enemy, until Christ returns… and even beyond then for a while.
EU Has No Unanimity on Ceasefire Issue
PA Media reported on December 15:
“Irish premier Leo Varadkar has said there is… not unanimity in the EU for a ceasefire in Gaza, a day after saying the bloc had ‘lost credibility’ on the issue… He was speaking at the end of a two-day EU summit that saw an agreement to begin accession talks with Ukraine and Moldova, and a proposal to send a 50 billion euro aid package to Ukraine vetoed by Hungary… He said the EU also needed to be stronger on pushing for a two-state solution…
“It comes after a UN General Assembly vote in which the vast majority of countries voted for an immediate ceasefire in the region. Austria, Germany and the UK abstained on the vote, while the US voted against it. [Actually, Austria voted against it too, according to other reports.]”
The National News reported on December 18:
“The EU’s top diplomat Josep Borrell on Monday described Israel’s ‘lack of distinction’ between civilians and military targets as ‘appalling’. His comments come as the US, the UK, Germany and France increase pressure on Israel to tone down its bombardments on the Gaza strip as the death toll nears 20,000… EU leaders… tasked Mr Borrell to draw up a list of violent Israeli settlers for discussions on banning them from Europe…
“German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock co-signed a letter with UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron in The Sunday Times calling for a ‘sustainable ceasefire.’ This differed from the French request for an immediate ceasefire… Some observers predict Israel will not be able to resist global opinion much longer.”
The Week of Whoppers
The Editorial Board of the New York Post wrote on December 14:
“The New York Times goes blind to Biden corruption… Diary of disturbing disinformation and dangerous delusions.
“This headline: ‘Impeachment Inquiry Approved, Despite No Proof of Biden Crime’… “We say: Sorry… Tons of evidence prove President Biden was involved in his son’s corrupt businesses: Hunter Biden’s partners’ testimony, bank records, pictures, video, audio recordings, emails . . . And all [that] emerged despite Biden family stonewalling, which made an inquiry with subpoena and other powers necessary…
“This column: ‘Age jokes can’t diminish Biden’s unrivaled experience and wisdom [by] The Hill… “We say: … Biden has wrecked everything he’s touched: the border, the economy, the budget, the situation throughout the world…”
No proof for Biden’s wrongdoing? This is so preposterous and ridiculous to even suggest! It’s just embarrassing and defies any credibility. And Biden’s “unrivaled experience and wisdom” is most certainly lacking in his failing government.
Biden—A Slow-Moving Car Crash
The New York Post published the following article by Piers Morgan on December 19:
“‘Mr. President,’ shouted a reporter as Joe Biden stumbled slowly towards his presidential SUV on a rainy night in Delaware on Sunday. ‘Why are you losing to Trump in the polls?’ The leader of the free world stopped in his tracks, looked momentarily bemused, then turned towards his questioner, and replied: ‘You’re reading the wrong polls!’ One second later, there was a loud bang as a random vehicle accidentally smashed into his presidential motorcade… It was a perfect metaphor: a presidency that’s become a slow-moving car crash. The driver who banged into the motorcade has since been charged with DUI.
“But when it comes to the analysis of polling, it would be more appropriate for President Biden to be charged with UID – Under the Influence of Delusion… Trump leads his successor in seven swing states by an average of 5% (47%-42%) among registered voters… As for Biden’s personal approval numbers, they just hit record lows of just 34% and among crucial independent voters, a catastrophic 24%.
“In fact, things are so bad… that for the first time, more people are impressed with his hapless, useless, and clueless Vice President Kamala Harris than him, albeit by a small margin (35%-34%)…
“Biden knows his poll numbers are dreadful… he’s been raging at staff for why his ratings are tanking so disastrously and demanding to know what they intend to do about it… In typical Biden style, everyone but himself is to blame for public disapproval of his woeful failures on everything from the economy… to immigration… So, when Biden says the only reason that we all think Trump’s beating him in the polls is because we’re all reading the wrong polls, he’s lying… This week, sources close to Barack Obama told the Wall Street Journal he fears his party could ‘very well lose’ the 2024 election. And Obama’s former top political adviser David Axelrod has warned that Biden’s approval ratings are ‘very, very dark news’…
“He’s 81 going on 101, and his seemingly never-ending physical and verbal stumbles are developing into the Republican Party’s Utopian campaign highlights reel. What’s inexplicable is why the Democrats seem so hell-bent on standing by a leader who’s become not just a national but a global joke…
“He genuinely thinks he’s going to retain the White House because there’s no chance of Americans voting for Trump again, and his anger at his aides is because Americans are telling pollsters the complete opposite…
“Biden increasingly reminds me of Union Army chief General John Sedgwick, who famously, during the American Civil War at the battle of Spotsylvania in 1864, berated his men for ducking for cover from Confederate bullets and declared confidently: ‘They couldn’t hit an elephant at this distance…’ He was shot dead seconds later. Joe Biden is just as deluded about the threat from Trump, and if insists on running in 2024, his political career will meet the same fate.”
Giuliani Verdict “Pathetic” and “Offensive”
Newsmax wrote on December 15:
“A jury’s verdict that former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani must pay $148 million to two former Georgia election workers who claim he defamed them was ‘pathetic’ and ‘offensive,’ Rep. Tim Burchett, R-Tenn., told Newsmax on Friday.
“The [black] workers… sued Giuliani for defamation regarding the 2020 election that they said upended their lives with racist threats and harassment. Giuliani was helping former President Donald Trump contest his narrow loss to Joe Biden in Georgia in that election…
“[Burchett said:] ‘This is a political game within our court system. It’s so political that our own Justice Department hasn’t even lifted a finger to look at Hunter Biden when the $30 million that have flowed through that family, their crime family, and probably not paid any taxes on it. I don’t know if Rudy Giuliani is guilty or not, but it’s not in the hundreds of millions of dollars guilty… You have the Bidens and the elite Democrats and the rest of us, and unfortunately this Justice Department, they’re blind only in one eye…’”
The Associated Press added on December 15:
“Rudy Giuliani strongly denounced the damages against him… saying the verdict matched the ‘absurdity and unfairness of the entire proceeding… It bore no resemblance to a trial in a country with the rule of law. I wasn’t able to offer any evidence in my defense. We’ll have more to say and look forward to the appeal.’”
The Messenger wrote on December 21:
“Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani petitioned for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Thursday, just one day after a federal judge allowed two election workers who he defamed to attempt to immediately enforce a $146 million judgment….”
The judge, who had been appointed by President Obama, had already found Giuliani guilty via a default judgment (!) before the case was handed to the jury who was only asked to decide on the amount of damages. One of the attorneys, representing the two plaintiffs, is a good friend of Hunter Biden, according to Giuliani. One must be blind in both eyes if one can’t see what is going on here, with a totally corrupt “justice” system which simply does not work anymore at all.
Trump Condemned for Using Again Hitler’s Phraseology
Daily Mail wrote on December 16:
“At a rally in New Hampshire, former President Donald Trump stood in front of a crowd of MAGA Republicans and said that illegal immigrants ‘poisoned mental institutions and prisons all over the world’. Although he didn’t elaborate on how migrants are ‘poisoning’ mental institutions and prisons – Trump’s words resemble those of Adolf Hitler, who famously used the same phrase in his book Mein Kampf…
“Trump used the same phrase back in October – prompting former Fox News host Geraldo Rivera to denounce the former President for claiming migrants are ‘poisoning the blood of our country,’ and expressing his shock at the ‘extraordinary, hateful, Hitler-like quote.’”
JTA wrote on December 20:
“Speaking at an Iowa presidential rally on Tuesday, Donald Trump denied lifting a phrase describing immigrants as ‘poisoning the blood of our country’ from Adolf Hitler’s manifesto… ‘I never read “Mein Kampf.” They said, “Oh, Hitler said that” — in a much different way.’…
“A number of media outlets noted that Trump’s late first wife, Ivana Trump, once reported that he kept a book of Hitler’s speeches by his bedside… Trump’s spokesmen have said the phrase is normal and not racist.”
The article points out that Hitler used this phrase in his 1925 manifesto about how he became anti-Semitic. It is true that Hitler did not initially hate the Jews because of their religion, but because of their race. And he did use words similar to those used by Trump.
Trump Barred From Appearing on Colorado Presidential Primary Ballot
The New York Post wrote on December 19:
“Donald Trump was barred from appearing on Colorado’s presidential primary ballot next year, the state’s Supreme Court ruled Tuesday. The court determined the 77-year-old former president was ineligible for the White House, citing the US Constitution’s insurrection clause, which led to his removal from the ballot.
“It’s the first time in history that Section 3 of the 14th Amendment has been used to disqualify a presidential candidate. ‘A majority of the court holds that Trump is disqualified from holding the office of president under Section 3 of the 14th Amendment,’ the court wrote in its 4-3 decision.
“The ruling is stayed until Jan. 4, or until the US Supreme Court makes a decision on the case. Trump’s campaign said in a statement it has ‘full confidence’ that the US Supreme Court would quickly side with the ex-president and ‘finally put an end to these un-American lawsuits.’”
The Daily Mail added on December 19:
“Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung… said the decision was a product of an ‘all-Democrat appointed’ court and a ‘Soros-funded, left-wing group’s scheme to interfere in an election on behalf of Crooked Joe Biden.”
As we reported earlier (see our Update #1091, dated November 24, 2023), it is highly doubtful that Section 3 of the 14th Amendment applies to a presidential candidate. We wrote the following:
“… a Colorado district judge ruled that Donald Trump must be placed on the ballot in the 2024 presidential contest. Even though she ruled, quite ridiculously, that Trump did engage in insurrection on January 6, 2021, she also ruled that he was not an officer of the United States as defined by the Fourteenth Amendment, which is only limited to ‘Senator or Representative in Congress’ and ‘elector of President and Vice President’ but does not include the ‘President.’
“As Breitbart explained on November 17:
“A federal court in New Hampshire recently dismissed a similar case… A Minnesota state court recently dismissed a lawsuit aiming to keep Trump off that state’s primary ballot. And a Michigan Court of Claims judge ruled that the Secretary of State must list Trump on the ballot as well. An appeal is likely. The Colorado case, or another similar case in another state, could likely land before the Supreme Court, which has never before ruled on the Civil War-era amendment.”
Strong Condemnation for Antidemocraric and Unconstitutional Colorado Court Decision
The New York Post published on December 20 the following article by Professor Turley:
“The Colorado decision to bar Donald Trump from the ballot will be overturned because it is wrong on the history and the language of the 14th Amendment… The question is whether the US Supreme Court will speak with one voice, including the three liberal justices. As with the three Democratic state justices who refused to sign off on the Colorado opinion, these federal justices can now bring a moment of unity not just for the court but the country in rejecting this shockingly anti-democratic theory…
“The majority on the Colorado Supreme Court adopted sweeping interpretations of every element of the decision to find that Trump not only incited an insurrection, but can be disqualified under this provision. It does not matter that Trump has never been charged with even incitement or that he called for his supporters to go to the Capitol to protest ‘peacefully.’ In finding that Trump led an actual insurrection, the four justices used speeches going back to 2016 to show an effort to rebel before Trump was ever president…
“What these four justices did was a direct assault on our democratic process in seeking to bar the most popular candidate in the upcoming election… Not only are these four justices seeking to bar the votes of millions of voters… but they are doing so in the name of democracy. It is the ballot cleansing that is usually associated with authoritarian countries like Iran, where voters are protected from ‘unworthy’ candidates… Most people understand intuitively that what these four justices did in Colorado was wrong…
“The moment has come for nine justices to speak in one voice. An American voice that transcends the personalities and divisions of our time. It is a voice that speaks not to what divides us but what defines us as a people.”
Breitbart wrote on December 20:
“Harvard Law professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz blasted the Colorado Supreme Court’s ruling that former President Donald Trump was not eligible for the presidential ballot based on the 14th Amendment. According to Dershowitz, the Colorado court’s 4-3 ruling misinterpreted the 14th Amendment, which he said laid out the process that Congress would enact, not a state court. ‘In the 60 years I’ve been practicing and teaching law, I’ve never seen a decision that’s so anti-democratic and so unconstitutional,’ Dershowitz said. ‘It is absurd. The idea that the 14th Amendment was supposed to substitute for the impeachment provision, carefully drafted by the framers, is wrong.’…
“Dershowitz also said he anticipated the U.S. Supreme Court would overturn the Colorado decision.”
Breitbart wrote on December 19:
“The Court’s unilateral determination that Trump engaged in insurrection comes despite Trump having never been convicted of that – or any other – crime, or even been charged in court with the crime of insurrection. He was acquitted by the U.S. Senate of charges of engaging in insurrection and continues to deny wrongdoing. In support of its legal assertion, the Court cites the U.S. House January 6 Select Committee, notwithstanding that Trump was acquitted of the House’s charges in the Senate…
“In another dissent, Justice Carlos Samour wrote, ‘Given the current absence of federal legislation to enforce Section Three, and given that President Trump has not been charged pursuant to section 2383, the district court should have granted his September 29 motion to dismiss.’ He continued, ‘the court received and considered a partial congressional report, the admissibility of which is not beyond reproach… I have been involved in the justice system for thirty-three years now, and what took place here doesn’t resemble anything I’ve seen in a courtroom.’…”
LifeSiteNews wrote on December 20: “The claim that he was involved in an ‘insurrection’ is perverse… Violent mobs regularly riot, vandalize, and empty stores of products and now courts are vandalizing the law and destroying the Constitution. These judges are no better than the mobs. They are even more dangerous and should themselves be jailed and charged with insurrection.”
The Most and Least Favorable Politicians in the USA
Breitbart wrote on December 17:
“The [recent Harvard-Harris] poll, conducted among over 2,000 registered American voters from December 13 to 14, has gained attention for revealing the radical attitudes of young people toward Israel and Jews. A slender majority of those 18-24 said that Israel should be destroyed. However, there are other interesting results in the survey, including the favorability of various politicians and public figures.
“President Joe Biden has net negative favorability, at -10% (43% favorable, 53% unfavorable).
“Republican challenger Donald Trump is marginally positive, with net positive favorability of 1% (49% favorable, 48% unfavorable). That is ahead of one of his rivals, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), at net negative favorability of -1%; however, it is behind former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley (net positive 9%) and even with businessman Vivek Ramaswamy (net positive 1%).
“Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has net positive favorability of 18% (49% positive, 31% negative). Elon Musk has net favorability of 12% (49% positive, 37% negative). Netanyahu — who is deeply underwater in his own country — is at 10% positive (36% positive, 26% negative).
“Israelis are often puzzled by Netanyahu’s popularity in the United States; likewise, Joe Biden enjoys highly favorable ratings in Israel…”
Liberty and Freedom?
Ron Paul wrote in his weekly column on December 18:
“Just before leaving town for Christmas break, the US House gave Americans a last-minute holiday gift: a nearly trillion dollar military spending bill filled with lots of goodies for the special interests and the military-industrial complex…
“Considering that Speaker Johnson tossed into the ‘must-pass’ bill yet another extension of Section 702 of the FISA Act, it’s unsurprising that he wanted to rush the bill through without the possibility of amendment. Section 702 allows the government to intercept and retain without a warrant the communications of any American who is in contact with a non-US citizen. It is clearly a violation of the Fourth Amendment which is supposed to protect Americans against unreasonable searches and seizures.
“Section 702 was ‘legalized’ under President George W. Bush during the ‘War on Terror’ after it was revealed that Bush was using the National Security Agency to illegally spy on Americans. We were told at the time that government must be granted these authorities because we were under threat from terrorists. It would just be a temporary measure, we were promised, and then the authority would expire. That was fifteen years ago and here we are re-authorizing the government to continue to violate our liberties.
“As with the rest of the violations of our civil liberties after 9/11, like the PATRIOT Act and the creation of the Department of Homeland Security and the TSA, the federal government soon turned its terrorism-fighting tools inward, targeting Americans rather than foreigners who we were told wanted to harm Americans. That’s why the FBI’s so-called domestic terrorism watchlist continues to expand to include Christians and those skeptical of big government.
“So rather than debating whether we want a government more like East Germany than the one our Founders imagined, Section 702 was tossed into the military spending bill…
“We are more than 33 trillion dollars in debt, with interest payments on that debt dwarfing all other government spending. A crash is coming. There is no time for more ‘business as usual.’’
German Government More Unpopular Than Ever
Following the coalition government’s extremely controversial and unpopular deal on the federal budget for 2024, raising or establishing new taxes and increasing costs for gasoline, heating and domestic flights, and the embarrassing attempts by Scholz and his political partners to justify the same, emotions in Germany are running high.
Die Welt wrote on December 15:
“The Ampel coalition is doing… worse than ever before… Only 27 percent of those surveyed say that the government is ‘doing its job rather well.’… But only 35 percent of all respondents believe that a CDU-led government would do a better job… Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) reached… his personal low… [In a new election] the Ampel coalition would not have a parliamentary majority. Of the politically realistic alliances, a coalition between the CDU and the SPD or the CDU and the Greens would currently be strong enough.”
In either case, this would be a catastrophic prognosis.
Still, Bild Online wrote on December 15:
“59 percent of Germans want early elections for the Bundestag next year, i.e. in 2024. Only 27 percent are AGAINST new elections.”
But early elections would have no reasonable chance of a successful government, based on the current situation.
In its article, Bild Online published some representative opinions of its readership:
“What have we done wrong that we are governed like this?… When will you [Scholz] finally resign? You’ve caused enough chaos. Germany has never been governed so badly.”
We would agree with this assessment. We said from the outset that this coalition of diverse parties such as SPD, Green and FDP would not be successful and even wondered how long it could stay in power.
Focus Online also published representative opinions of its readership on December 15:
“Germany is turning away from its government and the government is turning away from its people… This is an insolence beyond compare… It was already clear to me before that… tax increases were coming… I’m just angry with this government!… How about if you, Mr. Scholz, Mr. Habeck and Mr. Lindner, live the life of a normal worker for a month? Maybe you would realize what your laws mean to us. I’m 50 years old and I’m getting tired of seeing my hard-earned money not being used for my own people. All problems are blamed on the war. But many problems were created by your government…”
You might think you were reading statements about Biden and his government here.
Germany Needs a Leadership Figure
Focus wrote on December 18:
“In democracies, trust is the greatest asset. After two years of Ampel (the government coalition), there isn’t much left of it. This is because Chancellor Olaf Scholz and his government ignore the needs of the people… Due to the budget hammer… the government has not only lost billions of euros, but it has also continued to lose more of its reputation and trust.
“The entrepreneur Roland Berger, long-time advisor to Chancellors Helmut Kohl (CDU), Gerhard Schröder (SPD) and Chancellor Merkel (CDU), speaks of an ‘extreme domestic political crisis’, the like of which has not been seen in Germany since the time of Konrad Adenauer’s government.
“A new Adenauer, a chancellor who moves forward courageously and organizes government policy in order to finally restore the country’s competitiveness and thus secure the prosperity of millions of people – this leading figure is urgently needed. But Olaf Scholz doesn’t show any of that. On the contrary… Scholz clearly doesn’t see reality as it is on many topics. At the same time, he is also unable to show Germany a vision of how the greatest crisis situation in post-war history can be overcome… It is to be feared that Germany will continue to be among the worst performers in Europe in terms of the economy…
“How can it be that the losers are now hundreds of thousands of tenants with lower income who have to anticipate significant rent increases and electricity prices rising again?…
“The Ampel doesn’t know what’s happening in this country. Instead, it seems to ignore the concerns of citizens in lieu of its own emergency. This impression is becoming more and more established – and is extremely dangerous because in a phase of great uncertainty, the already low level of trust in the government continues to decline.”
Now the EU Wants German Money
Focus wrote on December 16:
“Chancellor Olaf Scholz has just filled his own budget holes a little bit at home when the next billion-dollar bill is already rolling towards him from Brussels. EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen wants a budget supplement because, among other things, the interest on debts is growing over her head.
“At the same time, Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán is blackmailing the EU: he will only agree to new aid to Ukraine if he himself receives more money from Brussels. As usual, almost a quarter of the costs of these wishes will be paid by the German taxpayer.”
Obviously, Germans will not be thrilled about this new development, either.
“If Necessary, We Will Paralyze the Country”
The Augsburger Allgemeine wrote on December 14:
“Agriculture is vehemently resisting the Ampel coalition’s savings plans resulting from the budget compromise…
“The President of the Bavarian Farmers’ Association, Günther Felßner, told our editorial team: ‘We farmers are supposed to be the victims because the federal government is unable to create a functioning budget ‘…
“Felßner describes the consequences from the association’s perspective as follows: ‘With the announced cuts, food will become more expensive for everyone in Germany, self-sufficiency will be put at risk…’
“He is calling on the federal government to withdraw the austerity proposals … If this doesn’t happen, he advises the Ampel coalition to make room for another, a new government that has sensible concepts. And he threatens: ‘If none of this happens, we as farmers see it as our responsibility to take to the streets and fight to ensure that our country remains viable for the future. If necessary, we will paralyze this country after Christmas.’”
Deutsche Welle wrote on December 18:
“Farmers from across Germany descended upon Berlin on Monday, with hundreds of tractors converging on the city’s famous Brandenburg Gate under the motto, ‘Too much is too much! Farmers are angry about the federal government’s decision to scrap diesel fuel subsidies as well as the negation of tax breaks for the purchase of agricultural and forestry machinery. According to the German Farmers’ Association, those changes could cost farmers up to €1 billion (roughly $1.1 billion)…Farmers are now seeking to send a ‘first clear signal’ to Berlin’s three-party governing coalition that it needs to drop the planned cuts.”
These are not good developments. The German nation is in uproar and blames, correctly, their government for the miserable situation.
Dramatic Changes for EU in the Making?
Express wrote on December 18:
“Controversial changes to the treaties which bind the European Union together would result in a bloc dominated by Germany in which member states would be reduced to ‘vassal’ status, opponents have claimed. The proposals… would involve a total of 267 changes to the treaties, including strengthening the role of the European Parliament, the establishment of a both Defence Union and an Energy Union, and limitations on the power of veto for members of the EU27.
“Much to the annoyance of Mr Verhofstadt and the other co-rapporteurs who lodged the proposals, last week’s European Council meeting – during which the foreign ministers of the EU member states gathered in Brussels – opted not to vote on the issue.
“However, Arkadiusz Mularczyk, Poland’s former Secretary of State for Europe, warned the issue had not gone away – and feared dire consequences for the independence of EU member states if the ideas developed during the Conference on the Future of Europe in 2022 were ever put into practice. Not least among his concerns was the use of Qualified Majority Voting (QMV), a mechanism used within the European Council and Council of the EU to take decisions without the need for unanimity…
“Mr Mularczyk, an MP with the recently ousted Law and Justice Party, stressed: ‘The potential loss of sovereignty, as a result of the proposed EU treaty changes and the wider use of qualified majority voting, may cause Member States to think carefully about the future of the EU which will be dominated by the biggest country in Europe, Germany. No Member State will want to be a vassal state in the EU with no voice… The proposed EU treaty changes clearly express that competencies concerning, i.e., the military, border control, fiscal and monetary policy, and the environment, will be transferred to the EU.’…”
And it will happen… ultimately.
Germany Deploys Troops for First Time Since World War II
Newsweek wrote on December 18:
“A new agreement between Germany and Lithuania will lead to German troops’ first permanent foreign deployment since World War II. The announcement was made Monday in Lithuania, where Defense Minister Arvydas Anusauskas met with his German counterpart, Boris Pistorius, to outline a multiyear ‘Roadmap Action Plan’ involving approximately 4,800 permanently stationed German soldiers. Both officials called the move a historic moment not just for their nations but for NATO as well…
“‘Germany understands clearly the new state of affairs in security politics: we are taking the role of leadership and responsibility in the [NATO] Alliance as we deploy a combat brigade in Lithuania,’ Pistorius said in the release.”
Of course, there is no leadership under Chancellor Scholz. Still, is the world waking up?
Russia Won’t End the War, Warns America
Fox News wrote on December 16:
“A spokesperson for the Kremlin [Dmitry Peskov] says [Putin] hopes that the next U.S. leader will be ‘more constructive.’…Peskov claimed that Putin is willing to work with ‘anyone who will understand that from now on, you have to be more careful with Russia and you have to take into account its concerns’… Peskov did say that Trump’s assertion that he could end the Russian-Ukrainian conflict in a single day to be misguided, saying that the war is ‘too complicated.’
“He expressed frustration with the U.S. for continuing to fund Ukrainian defenses against the ongoing Russian attacks, saying it was a waste of money to oppose the invasion… ‘You are making this conflict longer.’ Peskov also accused the West of waging a ‘war’ on Russia by bolstering defensive military capabilities in Ukraine. Putin reiterated this week that he will not end the war in Ukraine until his goals are achieved and, at a year-end news conference, offered rare details concerning those objectives.
“The Russian president, who is seeking reelection after being in power for nearly 24 years, addressed concerns from some Russian citizens about another wave of mobilization — a highly unpopular move he enacted in September 2022 to boost his forces in Ukraine. Putin dismissed the need for a second wave of mobilization of reservists, saying there are some 617,000 Russian soldiers currently in Ukraine, including around 244,000 troops who were called up to fight alongside professional Russian military forces. ‘There is no need [for additional mobilization],’ Putin said, because 1,500 men are being recruited into the Russian army every day across the country. He said 486,000 soldiers have signed a contract with the Russian military as of Wednesday evening.”
The highly praised EU decision to start membership negotiations for Ukraine means nothing in practice. German Chancellor Scholz has been praised for convincing Urban to leave the room so that an otherwise “unanimous” decision of the remaining EU members could be reached. However, this was nothing else but an exercise in futility. Any membership is years away. By that time, the war between Russia and Ukraine will have long been over.
No Russian Interest to Attack NATO?
Thomson/Reuters wrote on December 17:
“Putin dismissed as complete nonsense remarks by U.S. President Joe Biden that Russia would attack a NATO country if it won the war in Ukraine, adding that Russia had no interest in fighting the NATO military alliance…
“Putin casts the war [with Ukraine] as part of a much bigger struggle with the United States, which the Kremlin elite says aims to cleave Russia apart, grab its vast natural resources and then turn to settling scores with China.
“The West, which presents Russia and China as its main threats, says it has no plan to destroy Russia. Ukraine says it will not rest until every last Russian soldier is ejected from its territory.”
The biblical truth is that Russia and Ukraine WILL fight with Europe, and especially Germany, in the future.
“We Have About 5-8 Years”
Reuters wrote on December 15:
“Europe must race to ensure it can better defend itself as new military threats could emerge by the end of the decade even as the focus of security ally the United States shifts towards the Indo-Pacific, Germany’s defense minister said. Russia was hiking its weapons production considerably to sustain its invasion of Ukraine, while also threatening the Baltic states, Georgia and Moldova, Boris Pistorius was quoted as saying in an interview with Welt am Sonntag… ‘We have about 5-8 years to catch up, in terms of armed forces, industry and society,’ he said…
“The election of a more Europe-friendly government in Poland should now enable the Weimar Triangle of Berlin, Paris and Warsaw to develop more their military cooperation, he added.”
Like the 1940s…?
The Telegraph wrote on December 16:
“After the costly victory of 1918, peoples and politicians in democracies were mostly incapable of facing the terrifying fact that new and even greater dangers were looming… The grand old man of Labour, George Lansbury, proclaimed that Hitler, as a non-smoking vegetarian, must want peace. To the Liberal Lloyd George he was ‘the greatest German of the age’. The Tory Foreign Secretary Lord Halifax hoped that ‘one day the Führer will be seen entering Buckingham Palace at the side of the King’…
“Had the West been more visibly prepared and resolute, Hitler would probably have been overthrown by the German army…
“Ukraine is the test, like Czechoslovakia in the 1930s. We prevented the Czechs from defending themselves in 1938. At least we have helped the Ukrainians to resist, but now they are in danger of being effectively abandoned by being given too little too late… if America steps back, it will mean… the defeat of Ukraine…
“So far we have not been called on to make significant sacrifices. Are we still capable of them? Orwell wrote in 1940 that England was like ‘a family with the wrong members in control’, but still able to move together, ‘like a herd of cattle facing a wolf’. I hope we never have to find out the hard way if this is still true.”
It is very likely that the USA will begin soon to substantially reduce or entirely eliminate military help for Ukraine. Note the next article.
US With Smallest Military in Over 80 Years
The Daily Mail wrote on December 16:
“The United States is set to enter 2024 with its smallest military in more than eight decades and faces one of its ‘greatest challenges’ as it tries to boost recruiting… Under the $886 billion annual defense bill passed by Congress this week total active-duty troop numbers will fall to 1,284,500 next year. That is the lowest total since before the U.S. entered the Second World War in 1941 and officials said there should be a ‘national call to service’.
“Ashish Vazirani, the Pentagon’s acting undersecretary for personnel and readiness… said the ‘all-volunteer force faces one of its greatest challenges since (its) inception’ in the 1970s when the draft ceased.”
And so, it appears that ultimately, the draft will be reinstated.
Blasphemous Woke Nonsense
The Daily Mail wrote on December 18:
“Couples getting married will be asked if they want to be called ‘husband and wife’ under new woke Church guidelines. It is part of new ‘inclusive language’ rules published by The Methodist Church, which warns that old-fashioned terminology ‘makes assumptions about a family or personal life that is not the reality for many people’.
“The guidance also advises preachers to share their pronouns with congregation members ‘to create a safe space for people to be themselves.’… they should use ‘gender-neutral language’, opting for words such as ‘folks, teammates, friends, colleagues, or simply people’. It adds: ‘People of different genders may choose to use a gender-neutral title such as Mx’…”
Marriage is between a man and a woman, and they are (to be) called husband and wife. Period!
Reuters wrote on December 18:
“The Vatican said on Monday in a landmark ruling approved by Pope Francis that Roman Catholic priests can administer blessings to same-sex couples as long as they are not part of regular Church rituals or liturgies.
“A document from the Vatican’s doctrinal office, which effectively reversed a declaration the same body had issued in 2021, said such blessings would not legitimise irregular situations but be a sign that God welcomes all. It should in no way be confused with the sacrament of heterosexual marriage, it added.”
Newsmax wrote on December 21:
“Franklin Graham, president of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association…, is warning same-sex couples that even ‘so-called ‘blessings’ from religious leaders like Pope Francis will not save them ‘from the judgment of God.’ ‘Pope Francis has now approved Catholic priests “blessing” same-sex couples, but none of us, including the Pope, has the right to “bless” what God calls sin,’ Graham [wrote].”
What incredible hypocrisy.
Acknowledgement and Disclaimer
These Current Events are compiled and commented on by Norbert Link. We gratefully acknowledge the many contributions of news articles from our readership. The publication of articles in this section is not to be viewed as an endorsement or approval as to contents or accuracy of the selected articles, but they are published for the purpose of pointing at worldwide developments in the light of biblical end-time prophecy and godly instruction. Our own comments are provided in italics.
Is Jesus Christ the archangel Michael?
The idea that Jesus Christ is an angel or “the archangel Michael” is utterly absurd. However, some major church denominations claim, using a few selected biblical passages, that Jesus Christ is the archangel Michael. In this Q&A, we will examine these Scriptures in depth, but also consider other Scriptures that are deliberately omitted, and prove that this idea is absolutely false.
We will begin with the first quotes and biblical passages that supposedly prove that Jesus is the archangel Michael.
One article states that it is reported in Daniel 10:13, 21 that Michael came to the aid of an angel and that he is described as one of the first princes.
The New King James Version translates Daniel 10:13 as follows:
“But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days; and behold, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I had been left alone there with the kings of Persia.”
The German Menge Bible writes: “…until at last Michael, one of the chief princes of the angels, came to my aid…”
The New International Version writes: “…Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me…”
The German Revised Luther Bible 2017 translates: “…and behold, Michael, one of the foremost of the princes of the angels, came to my aid…”
Michael is also referred to as “the archangel Michael” in Jude 9 (New International Version). The Authorized Version writes: “Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.”
Note that the letter of Jude, as well as the other letters of Paul, speak of Jesus Christ as the Lord (Jude 4, 17, 21, 25; New International Version). When the Father is mentioned, He is identified with “God the Father” or “God” (Jude 1, 21).
It is the Lord Jesus Christ who will judge angels (Jude 6). It even says that we, once we are born-again members of the GOD FAMILY, will judge angels (1 Corinthians 6:3). It would be absurd to believe that we would judge Jesus Christ as an angel. Furthermore, if the archangel Michael was to be identical with Jesus Christ, the question arises as to why Christ did not dare to condemn Satan and why He said to Satan, “The Lord rebuke thee,” if the Lord is none other than Jesus Christ.
In our free booklet “Angels, Demons and the Spirit World,” we explain the following on pages 6-7:
“The Bible talks at times about certain ‘archangels.’ The meaning of this word is, ‘chief messenger.’ Only Michael is specifically referred to in Scripture as an ‘archangel.’ The name ‘Michael’ means, ‘Who is like God?’ Jude 9 identifies him as an ‘archangel.’ He is also referred to as ‘one of the chief princes,’ (Daniel 10:13) showing that there must be additional ‘chief princes.’ He is also described as ‘the great prince’ (Daniel 12:1). He is clearly in charge of other angels, as Revelation 12:7 explains (‘Michael and his angels fought…’).”
The German Elberfelder Bible states in a footnote to 1 Thessalonians 4:16 that the “syllable ‘arch’ in ‘archangel’ denotes the ‘highest-ranking or first.’”
Another biblical passage that supposedly proves that Jesus Christ is the archangel Michael can allegedly be found in 1 Thessalonians 4:16. In an article that supports this view, the passage is rendered as follows: “‘The Lord [Jesus] himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel and with the trumpet of God.’ So here, Jesus Christ is equated with the archangel or chief angel,” the article says.
This translation of the biblical passage is not precise. A better translation would be, as the German Revised Luther Bible 2017 renders it: “For he himself, the Lord, when the call [or command] sounds, when the voice of the archangel and the trumpet of God sound, will come down from heaven…” Also note James Moffatt – New Testament 1913: “The Lord himself will descend from heaven with a loud summons, when the archangel calls and the trumpet of God sounds…”
The German Menge Bible renders it as follows, “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven as soon as His wake-up call is given, as soon as the voice of the prince of angels is heard and the trumpet of God sounds.”
The German Elberfelder Bible is even more precise and exact: “For the Lord himself will descend at the cry of command, at the voice of an archangel and at the sound of the trumpet of God…” The archangel Michael is not the only archangel. And he is described as one of the chief princes of angels!
Hence, Christ will not descend until the voice of the archangel or a prince of angels is heard and the last trumpet sounds. This passage by no means proves that Christ is the archangel Michael. On the contrary, it proves that Christ and Michael are two different personalities.
We are then told that Christ is the archangel Michael, because “Michael” has the meaning of “Who is like God?” This does not constitute any evidence. For example, the name of the angel Gabriel, a high angelic prince and, according to tradition, also an archangel, means “God is powerful!” And the name of the prophet Joel also means “Yahweh is God.” So, we cannot simply define a person as Jesus Christ from the meaning of His name.
We say the following about Gabriel in our free booklet “Angels, Demons and the Spirit World” on page 7:
“Whether the second named angel in the Bible, Gabriel, is an archangel, is not clearly revealed. The name ‘Gabriel’ means, ‘God is mighty.’ While the Bible nowhere describes the appearance of Michael, the angel Gabriel has the ‘appearance of a man’ (Daniel 8:15; 9:21; see also the detailed discussion later in this booklet). He ‘stands in the presence of God’ (Luke 1:19) and is sent oftentimes by God to man with positive and important news (Luke 1:26, 31). He was sent several times to Daniel, and he was sent to Zacharias (Luke 1:11–13), and to Mary. Since the meaning of ‘archangel’ is ‘chief messenger,’ and since Gabriel is sent by God with important messages, the assumption is compelling that Gabriel is an archangel. He has been traditionally viewed as one of the other archangels and one of the chief princes.”
Furthermore, it is claimed that Jesus, who supposedly was the archangel Michael in His pre-human existence, has returned to heaven after His resurrection to resume His position as Michael, the supreme angel who would stand for the “glorification of God the Father.” In this context, reference is made to Philippians 2:9, whereby this passage is supposed to mean that “Therefore God also has highly exalted Him [Christ] and given Him the name [Michael] which is above every name…”
This interpretation is provably wrong. Let’s look at Philippians 2:9 in context.
The New King James Bible translates Philippians 2:5-11 as follows:
“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
The Bible is quite clear in this regard and Paul tells us unmistakably that the name of the Lord is JESUS CHRIST, not Michael, and that His name is above every name, which includes the name Michael. Jesus Christ said in John 14:13: “And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” Jesus goes on to say in verse 14: “If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.” In John 16:23, Christ promised us the following: “Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you.” But Christ also says in John 15:16, “You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you.”
Christ is saying that Christians should or must ask the Father in their prayers to God “in the name of Jesus Christ” and not in the name of “Michael.”
In our free booklet “Teach Us to Pray” we state on page 98:
“Since we belong to Christ, Christ allows us to do and say things in His glorious and all-powerful name. That is, we can do things through the power of His Holy Spirit in us. When we pray, write, or say something in the name of Christ, we are actually asking Christ to do those things for us. We speak to the Father through Christ. It is as if Christ speaks to the Father on our behalf—as if Christ communicates our prayers to the Father, helping us express to the Father what we think, how we feel, and what we are going through…
“When we end a prayer by using the words ‘in Christ’s name,’ we had better make sure that we CAN say this—that Christ IS actually speaking through us, or interceding for us…
“Every time we use the words ‘in Christ’s name,’ we are to be very conscious of the fact that Jesus Christ is acting, at that very moment, as our Mediator, Intercessor and Advocate…”
Interestingly, Jesus Christ emphasized four times that we are to ask God the Father for something in His name, i.e. in the name of “Jesus Christ.” What is so interesting about the fact that He said it four times? After all, Christ could have said it three times, or five times or six times.
“The number four is used many times to signify God’s revelation. God will often reveal something about Himself, or about something or someone else in this way.
“The Bible contains four gospel records, in which the human life of Jesus Christ and His preexistence is revealed. It is interesting, too, that Christ was born in the year 4 B.C. The Holy Scriptures are helpful and profitable for four things, as 2 Timothy 3:16 explains, namely ‘for doctrine, for reproof, for correction and for instruction in righteousness.’”
Another Scripture concerning Michael is found in Revelation 12:7, which is also said to be evidence that Jesus Christ is the archangel Michael. This Scripture describes how Michael and his angels fight against Satan and his angels and how they are finally banished from heaven.
Revelation 12:7-10 states:
“And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought with the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them in heaven any longer. So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, ‘Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down.”
This passage does not even remotely suggest that Christ could be the archangel Michael. A clear distinction is made between Christ and Michael.
But the evidence that Christ was not and is not the archangel Michael is overwhelming when we consider Scriptures that have not yet been mentioned or fully explained here.
Let us return to Philippians 2:6. It says that Christ was “equal” with God [some say: “like God”] before His birth as a human being. This is to be understood quite literally; Christ was not only “similar” to God the Father, but rather completely like God or equal with God in divine nature and character; He was and is the image of God the Father (compare Colossians 1:15), just as we too “shall be like” or equal with Christ in the resurrection, not just “similar to Him” (compare 1 John 3:2). Furthermore, we read that Christ was “God” before His birth as a human being, not just “godly” (compare John 1:1: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God [the Father], and the Word was God”).
Angels, however, are not God or equal with God. Rather, we read in John 1:3: “All things were made through Him [the Word, ‘Logos’, the speaker], and without Him nothing was made that was made.” Verse 14 then identifies the Word as Jesus Christ who became flesh.
“All things” that were made through the Word include all angels. We read in Colossians 1:16-17 that “by Him [Christ] all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.”
Angels are created beings, but Christ is not a created being. He has always existed with the Father, and it is said of Christ that His “goings forth are from of old, From everlasting [literally: “the days of eternity”]” (Micah 5:2). He is described as Melchizedek, “without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither BEGINNING of days nor END of life, but made like [in the sense of “equal with”] the Son of God, remains a priest continually [the New International Version says ‘forever’]” (Hebrews 7:3). The phrase that He was “made like the Son of God” is confusing. A better rendition is that He is like (or equal with) the Son of God.
The absolute inequality of Jesus Christ with angels is also revealed in Hebrews 1. He is described there as the “image” of the Father (verse 3). Christ has become so much better than the angels (verse 4) that all the angels will worship Him (verse 6). Angels would not worship other angels. Even we are forbidden to worship angels (Revelation 19:10; 22:8-9); yet, we are commanded to worship Christ in the right way (Matthew 15:9: “And in vain they worship Me…”). In addition,Christ is clearly referred to as “God” (Hebrews 1:8-9), and as the “Lord” who created everything (Hebrews 1:10).
If Michael was identical with Christ, then Christ alone would not have had enough power over Satan. He would have needed the help of Gabriel to resist Satan or a strong demon (the demon of Persia or the demon of Greece) (compare Daniel 10:13, 20-21; 11:1). This consideration alone proves that Michael cannot be Jesus Christ. Even as a human being, Jesus commanded: “Away with you, Satan!” (Matthew 4:10), and Satan obeyed.
As a human being, Jesus was a little lower than the angels for a short time, but not anymore (Hebrews 2:9). He is not an angel and never was.
Lead Writers: Thilo Hanstein and Norbert Link
Initial translation from the German: Daniel Blasinger
Preaching the Gospel and Feeding the Flock
compiled by Dave Harris
“Germany in Turmoil… Under a Failing Government,” is the title of a new StandingWatch program, presented by Evangelist Norbert Link.
Here is a summary: Germany’s ruling coalition is doing worse than ever before, and Chancellor Olaf Scholz has reached his personal low. In this “greatest crisis situation in Germany’s post-war history,” people are angry because of rising costs and taxes, due to the government’s perceived mismanagement, and they are asking for competent and successful leadership, which does not seem to be on the horizon right now.
“Deutschland in Aufruhr…unter einer versagenden Regierung,” is the title of a new AufPostenStehen program, presented by Norbert Link. This program covers the same topic as described above.
“Ist Meditation im Einklang mit der Bibel?” is the title of this Sabbath’s sermonette in Germany, presented by Norbert Link. Title in English: “Is Meditation Consistent with the Bible?”
“I Think, Therefore I Am–Not Good Enough,” the sermonette presented last Sabbath by Frank Bruno, is now posted. Here is a summary:
This concept was put forth by the philosopher Rene Descartes in 1637, and it basically refers to the act of thinking, or questioning one’s very existence as an indication of one’s existence. Our modern world has taken this to an extreme in many ways, honoring the self and individual thought above all else, including God. In this Sermonette, we will explore various Scriptures that will clarify how we should deal with our thoughts of self and focus as we should—on God
“The Fruit of Labor,” the sermon presented last Sabbath by Eric Rank is now posted. Here is a summary:
Results require effort. If we want to grow in our Christian calling, we must acknowledge that there are no shortcuts. The life experiences are our opportunities to put ourselves to work so we can learn and develop spiritual fruit.
How This Work is Financed
This Update is an official publication by the ministry of the Church of the Eternal God in the United States of America; the Church of God, a Christian Fellowship in Canada; and the Global Church of God in the United Kingdom.
Editorial Team: Norbert Link, Dave Harris, Rene Messier, Brian Gale, Margaret Adair, Johanna Link, Eric Rank, Michael Link, Anna Link, Kalon Mitchell, Manuela Mitchell, Dawn Thompson
Technical Team: Eric Rank, Shana Rank
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