Wednesday, May 23, 2007

K-House eNews for May 22, 2007

Koinonia House Online
Bringing the world into focus through the lens of Scripture
K-House eNews
For The Week Of May 22, 2007

**TABLE OF CONTENTS**

This Week's 66/40 Radio Broadcast

Articles and Commentary

  • The Feast of Pentecost
  • RFID Implants Gaining Acceptance
  • The Problem of Pakistan

Important News Headlines

Memory Verse of the Week


**THIS WEEK'S 66/40 RADIO BROADCAST**

Mark 9- 11 Mark 9- 11
Heading For Jerusalem

We are heading for Jerusalem, and that climactic final week. Nine months before we began the meandering journey from Galilee, through Samaria, then Perea, and finally to Judea, ministering in at least 35 localities and yet timing the journey purposefully to end up in Jerusalem for the Passover.


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*Passover*
*Feast of Unleavened Bread*
Feast of First Fruits * Feast of Pentecost
Feast of Trumpets * Day of Atonement * Feast of Tabernacles

  • Do the Feasts of Moses predict the major milestones in God's plan?
  • Are the Feasts prophetic?
  • Has the Feast of Pentecost been completely fulfilled?
  • What are the New Testament implications?

Set by God, these Feasts are not only commemorative in a historical context, but are also prophetic. The Feasts point to the Messiah's First and Second Coming and highlight the Church.


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**ARTICLES AND COMMENTARY**

THE FEAST OF PENTECOST - (Print)

On Wednesday, the 6th of Sivan on the Hebrew calendar, Jews will celebrate Hag Ha Shavuot, also known as the Feast of Weeks or the Feast of Pentecost.

The Torah - the five books of Moses - details seven feasts during the Hebrew calendar. The first three feasts are in the spring, in the month of Nisan: Passover, the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and the Feast of First Fruits. These feasts are predictive of the First Coming of Jesus.

In between the spring and fall feasts, fifty days after the Feast of First Fruits, there is the Feast of Pentecost. This feast, celebrated this week, is associated with the Church. The Birth of the Church appears to be a fulfillment of the Feast of Pentecost. (It is interesting to note that this is the only feast in which leavened bread is ordained.)

The last three feasts are in the fall, in the month of Tishri: the Feast of Trumpets, the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur), and the Feast of Tabernacles. These are associated with His Second Coming.

The timing of the Feast of Pentecost is based on Leviticus 23:16 which points to "the morrow after the seventh sabbath" (fifty days) after the Feast of First Fruits. The Greek word Pentecost means "the fiftieth day." Since the Passover was on the 14th of Nisan, and there were three days to the Red Sea crossing, then 46 days into the wilderness, and three days of Moses' preparation, this is deemed to correspond to the 49 day interval between the Feast of First Fruits (17th of Nisan) and the Feast of Pentecost (6th of Sivan).

The Feast of Pentecost is associated with the birth of Israel and the giving of the Law in Exodus 19. Thus, it is also called the Feast of Revelation. Another name for the Feast of Pentecost is Hag Ha Kazir, The Feast of Harvest, since it is celebrated at the time of the "first harvest."

A study of the Feast of Pentecost is not complete without a review of the Book of Ruth. The Jewish observance of the Feast of Weeks has always included the reading of this particular book. It is provocative to note the interesting parallels relating to the Church. This elegant love story exemplifies the role of the goel, or kinsman-redeemer. As we examine Boaz's role, we notice that he, in many ways, pre-figures our own kinsman-redeemer, Jesus Christ. Through his act of redemption, Boaz returns Naomi (Israel) to her land, and also takes Ruth (a Gentile) as his wife. This suggests a parallel with the Church as the Gentile bride of the kinsman-redeemer.

The Feasts of Israel, set by God, are not only commemorative in a historical context, but are also prophetic. For more information see The Romance of Redemption (a study of the book of Ruth) as well as our briefing titled The Feasts of Israel.

Related Links:

The Romance of Redemption - MP3 Download - Koinonia House
The Feasts of Israel - MP3 Download - Special Offer!

RFID IMPLANTS GAINING ACCEPTANCE - (Print)

One of the worst horrors parents can experience is to have their child go missing. No words can express the fear and anxiety parents experience - or the possible terrors children can experience - until they are back home safe with family and friends. There is concern enough when a child is simply lost - lost and scared and exposed to the elements. When the child has been abducted - like little Madeleine McCann, who was recently taken from her family's vacation room in Portugal - the evil human element makes the situation even more desperate.

The issue of lost and abducted children is one which often prompts discussions on the subject of RFID microchip implants. There are a myriad of products and services available today to help parents locate missing kids: there are companies that can track your child's cell phone, special electronic wristbands, even pajamas with sewn-in tracking devices. However there are ways to get around such safeguards. How difficult is it to change a child's clothing, remove a wristband, or dispose of a cellular phone? Wherify, an American company, offers a GPS-locator watch that can be locked onto a child's wrist. If nothing else, the watch could act as a deterrent to potential kidnappers. Or, abductors might simply have to work a little harder to make the watch ineffective as a tracking device. That is why a growing number of parents have considered turning to RFID (radio frequency identification) chips as a possible solution. RFID implants are - in theory - hidden from plain sight and tamper-proof. However RFID critics argue that the technology will make us vulnerable to invasions of privacy.

Children are not the only ones that make RFID chipping an appealing choice. Alzheimer's Community Care in West Palm Beach has already decided to implant its patients with RFID chips - with the patients' consent if they are competent, and with the consent of family if they are not. In a medical emergency, hospitals could scan the chip in order to pull up the Alzheimer's patient's medical history.

Many people, however, think that putting a sophisticated microchip in a patient's arm is simply unnecessary. MedicAlert bracelets list a patient's medical conditions on the back. They are inexpensive, reliable, and easily recognizable. While MedicAlert bracelets can be potentially taken off, they offer a practical alternative to the tiny rice-shaped implants.

There are also many practical things that parents can do to protect their children - without keeping them locked up in the house 24-7 or investing in highly controversial new technologies. For example, children can be taught practical safety tips. Kids can also be told how to avoid dangerous situations and what to do if they are approached by a stranger. Young children should always be properly supervised. These tried and true tactics, although simple, can make all the difference in the world.

We live in an increasingly global, increasingly dangerous high-tech world. The satellites that enable OnStar to locate your vehicle and give you directions to the nearest hospital may also make it possible for third-parties to track you without your knowledge. The convenience of RFID is offset by the tremendous potential for the loss of privacy.

Once upon a time the idea of humans getting microchip implants seemed an unlikely scenario - the stuff of Orwellian fiction. Some have envisioned a day when governments might seek to monitor and control their populations though the use of mandatory implants. However RFID technology is becoming increasingly common and more socially acceptable. The day may come - which once seemed unthinkable - when people around the world will stand in line and voluntarily embrace such technology.

Related Links:

Would an Implanted Chip Help to Keep my Child Safe? - Times Online
Do Chip Implants Protect or Violate Privacy? - ABC
The New World Order - MP3 Download - Koinonia House
Strategic Trends: Global Government - Koinonia House

THE PROBLEM OF PAKISTAN - (Print)

In the current turbulent geopolitical climate international attention has been focused on efforts to stymie nuclear proliferation and combat terrorism in the Middle East. The ongoing bloodshed in Iraq, Iran's clandestine nuclear program, and the bitter battle between Israel and its foes have all taken center stage. However there is a key player in the region that is often overlooked - and which in recent weeks has grown increasingly unstable.

The Islamic Republic of Pakistan is the sixth most populous nation in the world and the second largest Muslim nation. It is sandwiched between the Middle East and Asia, and bordered by Iran, Afghanistan, China, and India. It is also the only Islamic nation with a declared nuclear weapons program.

The Islamic Bomb

Pakistan's nuclear program was spurred on to fruition by its bitter rivalry with India. India detonated its first nuclear device, code-named "Smiling Budda," in 1974. For the next two decades it claimed that its nuclear program was only meant for peaceful research purposes. Then, in 1998, India all but declared itself a nuclear power with a series of nuclear tests, a move that angered the West and prompted Pakistan to follow suit. Pakistan began its secret nuclear weapons program in 1972, and now has between 65 and 90 nukes - roughly on par with the suspected size of India's arsenal.

After India's independence from Great Britain in 1947 the British Empire in India was divided, and the modern nations of India and Pakistan were born. The two nations have been at odds ever since. Today the conflict between the two nuclear powers centers on the disputed province of Kashmir.

Ally or Adversary

The current President of Pakistan is General Pervez Musharraf, who came to power in a military coup in 1999. Following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States, Musharraf chose to side with the US against the Taliban government in Afghanistan. However prior to the 9/11 attacks Pakistan was a close ally of the Taliban and one of its strongest supporters. It was only under tremendous pressure from the United States and the international community that Pakistan agreed to join the war on terror. In truth, Musharraf had little choice but to comply. The United States made it clear "you are either with us, or against us."

Pakistan chose to ally itself with the United States in part because it feared a strong new alliance between the US and India. If Pakistan had refused to reverse its stance and support the US, the United States would most likely have deemed Pakistan a "terrorist state" and part of the "axis of evil." For many years Pakistan has teetered on the brink of a full-scale war with India - and if the US had weighed-in heavily on one side the consequences could have been disastrous.

Today Pakistan is growing increasingly unstable and Musharraf's authority is in jeopardy. Experts say Musharraf is under enormous strain: America is demanding that he crack down on Islamist militants, Pakistan's religious extremists are furious at him for abandoning Afghanistan's Taliban rulers and softening his line on Kashmir, and Pakistan's main political parties are shunning him because of his resistance to democratic reforms. Last Tuesday a suicide bombing in a town near the Afghan border killed 25. Meanwhile, anti-Musharraf riots have killed 40 and wounded at least 150. According to press reports, Musharraf has ordered his soldiers to kill rioters on sight. Even if Musharraf somehow weathers this storm, analysts say he is running out of options. Musharraf has survived multiple assassination attempts and he has no clear successor. If his regime falls, Pakistan could plunge into chaos.

Pakistan is considered to be a "frontline ally" in the war against terrorism. Yet despite its government's cooperation with the United States, Pakistan is home to many Islamist extremists, some with links to al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups. Militants have conducted several terrorist attacks on Americans and other Westerners in Pakistan since September 11. Many Taliban and al-Qaeda fighters fleeing from Afghanistan have taken refuge throughout Pakistan - particularly in lawless tribal regions on the Afghan border which are sympathetic to the fundamentalist cause.

Nuclear Nightmare

Much like Iraq, Pakistan is a divided nation. There are many opposing sects and ethnicities that constantly threaten to pull the country apart. In fact, less than 10 percent of its 160 million people are native speakers of the national language. The worst case scenario is our worst nightmare: nuclear weapons in the hands of Islamic radicals. It is therefore essential that we do not overlook the problem of Pakistan. To learn more about what is happening in the world around us, and what it means for you and me as Christians, check out the Strategic Trends section of our website (see link below).

Related Links:

Monitor the Strategic Trends - Koinonia House
Pakistan Faces the Taleban's Tentacles - BBC
Musharraf Urged to Change Course or Risk Losing Power - IHT
Pakistan Pressured Over Radical Mosque - AP
New Pakistan Riots Break Out - TIME


**IMPORTANT NEWS HEADLINES**

Some US Muslims Approve Suicide Hits - May 22, 2007
One in four younger US Muslims say suicide bombings to defend their religion are acceptable at least in some circumstances. The survey by the Pew Research Center, one of the most exhaustive ever of the country’s Muslims, revealed that nearly 1 in 4 US Muslims under the age of 30 say that such attacks are sometimes justified. MSNBC

Bomb Kills 5 in Turkish Capital; Dozens Wounded - May 22, 2007
A powerful bomb explosion in the Turkish capital Tuesday killed 5 people and wounded more than 60. IHT

Turkey at The Boiling Point - May 22, 2007
Two simmering problems threaten to boil over in Turkey this summer with greater international consequences than ever before. First is the relationship between the Islamic religion and the secular government. Second is the raids against Turkish troops by terrorists from Turkey's minority Kurdish population who are now camped across the border in Iraq. IHT

Christians, Veterans Team Up to Protect Memorials - May 22, 2007
The nation's largest veterans' service organization is teaming up with two Christian legal groups in an effort aimed at protecting Christian-themed war memorials from lawsuits that would remove them from public property. CNS News

Messiah Mystery Follows Death of Mystical Rabbi - May 22, 2007
When Rabbi Yitzchak Kaduri died in February 2006, somewhere between the age of 106 to possibly 117, 300,000 attended his funeral in Jerusalem. Before Kaduri died, he reportedly wrote the name of the Messiah on a small note, requesting it remained sealed for one year after his death. The note revealed the name of the Messiah as "Yehoshua" or "Yeshua" – or the Hebrew name Jesus. WND

US Tax Dollars Fund Terrorist TV Broadcast - May 17, 2007
Overseers of the United States government's Arabic-language satellite television network say a speech by Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah used the network as a platform for inciting a crowd to violence against Israel. In another broadcast also funded by US tax dollars, Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh lent support to the Iranian assertion that the World War II Holocaust against European Jews was a myth. FOX News


**MEMORY VERSE OF THE WEEK**

I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.
Psalms 40:1-3 KJV


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