Left Behind!! Who Me?

Written by Paul Griffitts

The popularity inrepparttar past few years ofrepparttar 135629 apocalyptic fiction series Left Behind by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins in indicative ofrepparttar 135630 fact that people would rather believe a lie told to them in a sexy, slick way then believerepparttar 135631 truth ofrepparttar 135632 Word of God that has been staring them straight inrepparttar 135633 face for centuries.

Many Christian groups today propound that one day soon and it seems likerepparttar 135634 more money that is needed byrepparttar 135635 preacherrepparttar 135636 closerrepparttar 135637 day is that all Christian believers will be gathered together and thus disappear fromrepparttar 135638 earth and that all ofrepparttar 135639 unbelievers ofrepparttar 135640 world will be left behind. Is this whatrepparttar 135641 Bible teaches?

With all that is happening inrepparttar 135642 world, wars and rumors of wars, earthquakes, famines, and tsunamis can anyone deny that we are nearrepparttar 135643 end times? So what does God's Word teach us as to who will escaperepparttar 135644 coming tribulation and who will be left behind.

The Book of Revelation one ofrepparttar 135645 most misinterpreted books ofrepparttar 135646 Bible causing many sects and believers confusion speaks in chapter 12 of a great wonder or sign in heaven. This isrepparttar 135647 first timerepparttar 135648 word "sign" (Gk. semeion) occurs inrepparttar 135649 Book of Revelation. The sign is that of a woman "clothed withrepparttar 135650 sun, withrepparttar 135651 moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars".

Revelation 12:1 And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed withrepparttar 135652 sun, andrepparttar 135653 moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:

This verse is in direct contrast withrepparttar 135654 woman spoken of in chapter 17 beginning in verse 3 "…and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet colored beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns."

Revelation 17:4 Andrepparttar 135655 woman was arrayed (same word as in 12:l) in purple and scarlet color, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication:

Revelation 17:5 "And upon her forehead {was} a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.".

Babylonrepparttar 135656 great is a city, a physical city that is uponrepparttar 135657 earth and in it is manifestrepparttar 135658 mystery of iniquity.

Revelation 17:18 Andrepparttar 135659 woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth overrepparttar 135660 kings ofrepparttar 135661 earth.

The sign of chapter 12 which is a woman also represents a city (andrepparttar 135662 system for whichrepparttar 135663 city stands). The woman of chapter 12 isrepparttar 135664 true;repparttar 135665 woman of chapter 17 isrepparttar 135666 false,repparttar 135667 woman of chapter 12 is attacked byrepparttar 135668 dragon,repparttar 135669 woman of chapter 17 is supported byrepparttar 135670 beast. The woman of chapter 12 is Jerusalem,repparttar 135671 city of David and of Israel. She is represented as being onrepparttar 135672 eve of giving birth to a child.

There is another sign seen in heaven in chapter 12 that of a great fiery red dragon andrepparttar 135673 dragon stood beforerepparttar 135674 woman, ready to devour her child as soon as it should be born. The sun, moon and stars,repparttar 135675 woman's emblems, seem to indicate a power from heaven. This is in direct contrast withrepparttar 135676 seven heads and ten horns andrepparttar 135677 seven diadems, which plainly indicaterepparttar 135678 powers ofrepparttar 135679 beast that supportrepparttar 135680 woman of Revelation 17.

Revelation 17:3 So he carried me away inrepparttar 135681 spirit intorepparttar 135682 wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet colored beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns.

The dragon inrepparttar 135683 sign of chapter 12:4 is said to drawrepparttar 135684 third part ofrepparttar 135685 stars from heaven and cast them torepparttar 135686 earth. This is taken by some to refer torepparttar 135687 fall of Satan butrepparttar 135688 language here is that of an event corresponding torepparttar 135689 time ofrepparttar 135690 tribulation andrepparttar 135691 cities. The reference torepparttar 135692 stars is defined in verse 9 of chapter 17 "and his angels were cast out with him", being at that moment of defeat by Michaelrepparttar 135693 Archangel.

The woman of chapter 17 representsrepparttar 135694 city of Babylon literally;repparttar 135695 city will exist atrepparttar 135696 time ofrepparttar 135697 tribulation so we can continue to understandrepparttar 135698 verses inrepparttar 135699 context ofrepparttar 135700 period or time which is referred to here.

Revelation 12:7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought againstrepparttar 135701 dragon; andrepparttar 135702 dragon fought and his angels,

Revelation 12:8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.

Revelation 12:9 Andrepparttar 135703 great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, calledrepparttar 135704 Devil, and Satan, which deceivethrepparttar 135705 whole world: he was cast out intorepparttar 135706 earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

Revelation 12:5 "And she brought forth a man-child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron; and her child was caught up unto God and His throne".

The important and most interesting passage here is where we are told thatrepparttar 135707 woman brought forth a man-child. Who isrepparttar 135708 man-child? One might think this first instance is speaking of Christ Himself a fulfillment of a prophecy ofrepparttar 135709 Old Testament but in chapter 2:26, 27 these words are used of an overcomer.

Revelation 2:26,27 "And he that overcometh, and keepeth My works untorepparttar 135710 end, to him will I give power overrepparttar 135711 nations, and he shall rule them with a rod of iron; asrepparttar 135712 vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father."

Revelation refers to this man-child being born in a future day. This cannot refer to Christ personally, but it indicates a company of faithful OVERCOMERS who sharerepparttar 135713 millennial reign of Christ.

Who are these overcomers? The overcomers are those who are not just in believing unto life but faithful service to The Lord. Hebrews 11 seems to give an excellent list andrepparttar 135714 key to being amongrepparttar 135715 overcomers is being one who "loved not their lives untorepparttar 135716 death" this does not mean they were killed (but many were) as members inrepparttar 135717 Book of Life in Revelation seems to indicate but a determination to do God's Will not one's own will even if that means to die.

The taking up of this man-child or overcomers to God and His throne is beforerepparttar 135718 persecution, and it makes an escape fromrepparttar 135719 trouble of that day. In Matthew 24:4-8 we haverepparttar 135720 beginning ofrepparttar 135721 birth-pains, which are, wars, famines, pestilence and earthquakes. These have already been indicated inrepparttar 135722 opening ofrepparttar 135723 seals. They leadrepparttar 135724 way forrepparttar 135725 tribulation underrepparttar 135726 Beast and false Prophet, and when they reach their highest point,repparttar 135727 man-child is born.

Connecting Chicago and the Image of the Virgin Mary

Written by Roger Wright

Dancing Underrepparttar Expressway

The apostles came up and said torepparttar 135409 Master,” Give us more faith” Butrepparttar 135410 Master said “You don’t need more faith. There is no ‘More” or “less” in faith. If you have a bare kernel of faith, sayrepparttar 135411 size of a poppy seed, you could say to this sycamore tree, “Go jump inrepparttar 135412 lake” and it would do it. From Luke 17. “The Message” translation.

Not far from where Chicago’s Kennedy Expressway paved overrepparttar 135413 apartment at 1523 West Wabansia Avenue where Nelson Algren and Simone deBeauvoir would wander home late at night fromrepparttar 135414 neighborhood tap; an mage ofrepparttar 135415 Virgin Mary appeared onrepparttar 135416 concrete wall beneath whererepparttar 135417 Kennedy crosses Fullerton Parkway

Obdulia Delgado was on her way home from work atrepparttar 135418 hospital. And as she drove down Fullerton Parkway beneathrepparttar 135419 Kennedy, traffic thundering above onrepparttar 135420 concrete artery connecting O’Hare Airport withrepparttar 135421 towers of downtown Chicago; she looked atrepparttar 135422 wall and immediately pulled on over. If you putrepparttar 135423 image, drawn in salt stained runoff fromrepparttar 135424 highway above, if you put it next to an image ofrepparttar 135425 Virgin of Guadalupe you’d have a pretty close match.

Viewed throughrepparttar 135426 lens of a camerarepparttar 135427 image becomes even sharper,repparttar 135428 lines distinct and close to clear. Obdulia Delgado fell to her knees and began to pray.

And then---because this is Chicago, forever and always a cross roads; while Obdulia knelt and prayed andrepparttar 135429 traffic zoomed by and roared overhead--- at a train station just a little bit south nearrepparttar 135430 loop, a tall, serene and radiant black man carrying a battered saxophone case stepped down offrepparttar 135431 train and throughrepparttar 135432 railroad steps of smoke and time. Finally having found that one perfect sound he had sought during all his time on earth; John Coltrane found his way to that underpass, knelt down next to Obdulia to lift his gleaming golden horn from its case, stood up tall, closed his eyes and began withrepparttar 135433 two perfect bell shaped notes of a piece he called: Dear Lord.

John Coltrane’s “Dear Lord” echoed out from that underpass, along withrepparttar 135434 news of what Obdulia found onrepparttar 135435 wall, that perfect sound heading off towards Division Street. Algren hears and he wanders up to Fullerton to have himself a look.

A slight bespectacled man, a counterpoint torepparttar 135436 massive presence of Coltrane, Algren stands off torepparttar 135437 side to watchrepparttar 135438 fun begin. Knowing now that when he shows up: others will follow. Algren listens and he watches and remembers a letter he tossed off once to a man, a Korean War vet who wrote to ask about what it was like to write “Man with a Golden Arm.” Algren replied torepparttar 135439 man:

“But there were never days when I felt I wouldn't complete it. I knew that, unlessrepparttar 135440 army got me again or a Buick bumped me, I'd get a story put together, because I hadrepparttar 135441 parts to put together. My self-doubts weren't concerned with whether it would be completed, but only whether it would say anything, and say it well, as nobody else could ever have said it, when it was done. All those things came true, to a limited degree, so I feel it was a lucky book, and a lucky time now past, and I was lucky to write it.”

Algren laughs to himself, standing underneath that bridge---knowing now that it was not aboutrepparttar 135442 luck. And when Algren chuckles, Coltrane stops for just an instant and joins inrepparttar 135443 laugh---seeing Coltrane smile, much less laugh—like some sort of miracle or something!

In that instant ofrepparttar 135444 pause andrepparttar 135445 chuckle: two new Chicago wanderers: this time fromrepparttar 135446 South side join in underneath that bridge. Appearing first with a scowl, till somebody fromrepparttar 135447 crowd that is beginning to build around that image ofrepparttar 135448 Virgin shouts out, “Yo Studs Lonnigan, you kissinrepparttar 135449 old dump goodbye?”

And when he hears those words, James T. Farrell breaks out in a crooked Irish grin, and as soon as Farrell smiles a new piece of music, dredged up as ifrepparttar 135450 land itself,repparttar 135451 dirt andrepparttar 135452 sweat andrepparttar 135453 layers of time could come bursting throughrepparttar 135454 cement in a four bar blues, massive guitar and voice of allrepparttar 135455 earth---McKinley Morganfield, Muddy Waters says,

“C’mon baby don’t you want to go? C’mon baby don’t you want to go? Back to that same old place. Sweet home Chicago

As Muddy waters just roars,repparttar 135456 crowd grows even bigger.

A weary wandering con men, over there inrepparttar 135457 corner by himself, 57 year old Harry stumbles in fromrepparttar 135458 deserted bleachers of a cold September Cubs game, his last name L-U-M tattooed in purple onrepparttar 135459 back of his hand. Stepping out of Millers Pub underneathrepparttar 135460 El Tracks on Wabash, belly full of beer and more gut level smarts about what mattered to people thanrepparttar 135461 next six generations of baseball executives would have, Bill Veeck hobbled over to join inrepparttar 135462 crowd.

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