Friday, June 26, 2015

We Are A Witness To Biblical History

One of the questions I used to ask online was this... "Do you ever wish you lived in biblical times?  If so, which era would you like to have lived in?"  Well, I'd get all kinds of responses, but the one response I never received was this... "I am living in biblical times.  I'm living in the end times spoken of by the prophets!"

Yes, we are living in a really exciting time in history.  We're living in a time that the saints before us could only dream about.  Here we are in a world that is on the verge of having the total force of evil unleashed upon it as we and the Holy Spirit are taken out of the way at the time of the Rapture! As the world deteriorates, our one hope lies in the return of Yeshua our Bridegroom!  

I'm sure many of us have wondered what it would be like to talk with someone we've read about in the bible.  We'd like to know what they were thinking and what they were doing when God intervened in their lives.  
  • "Moses, what are some of the details of the journey in the desert that weren't recorded in the bible?"  
  • "Abraham, as you were leading your son to be sacrificed on the alter of God, how did you keep your composure?"  
  • "Rahab, when you let down that cord of scarlet, did you doubt you would survive when you saw the walls come crashing down all around the city?"
What we don't realize is that these very saints may come up to us to ask us questions about what was happening here on earth in the years leading up to the Rapture. "What were you doing?"  "What was the world experiencing?" "How powerful was the deception with which the enemy clouded the minds of unbelievers?" What were the signs that made you aware of the season of Yeshua's return?"

We are living biblical history and are witnesses to the continued fulfillment of prophecy as God allows mankind to destroy itself.  We use our computers, phones, tablets, radios, televisions and printed media to follow the events as they unfold, most often in real time!  Society seems to be decaying at a more rapid pace as citizens watch their personal liberties fade away, racism once again burns in the hearts of men, scandals and deception are expected of those holding public office, sexual perversion is accepted at the highest levels of government as witnessed by the Supreme Court's decision concerning same-sex marriage, military forces are positioning themselves, and long-held alliances between countries begin to crumble.  

We can also see the three major religions of the world begin to coalesce into a one world religion as the Catholic church begins to embrace Islam and Protestant religions.

We watch as...
  • The terrorist group IS decapitates Christian children and men as they rape and make sexual slaves of Christian women.
  • Iran is being allowed to continue it's uranium enrichment, which will eventually lead to the creation of nuclear weapons with which they can terrorize with world.
  • Israel continues to become more isolated as the United States begins to turn it's back on a long held alliance.
  • China becomes the number one economy in the world and builds a technologically modern military.
  • The United States seems to make one misstep after another, causing our allies and enemies to see us as a declining world power.
  • Earthquakes occur in greater number and in diverse places.
  • The governments of the world become more and more corrupt.
  • The heart of man grows cold.
  • Evil is spoken of as good, and good evil.
We are at the tail end of the church age, my brothers and sisters. We're not just close, we're very close to the Bridegroom's return. God never promised us that we would be exempt from persecution before the Rapture. In fact, it's to be expected as the dark ruler of this world continues to influence the nations, governments and peoples of this planet. Christian persecution won't just contain itself to other nations, it will shift to this country as well. Already Christians are being harassed, verbally and physically attacked, and forced to stand before a judge to explain their actions.

The legalization of murdering a child in the womb (abortion) flooded this nation with the sin of the spilled blood of the innocent, and now the Supreme Court has mocked God again by legalizing same-sex marriage. Now, matters have been made much worse. Born again believers don't see this decision as the rest of the world does.  We see the spiritual implications.  We know that God is not pleased, and we await His response as we go forward from here.

There are dark times coming for the inhabitants of this free land and for the rest of the world. God's patience, though greater than we can possibly imagine, does run out.  This may be the very thing that stirs that anger to overflowing.

Take heart, brothers and sisters. Although we are entering dark times, we live and operate in the light. We still have the opportunity to be beacons of light in this ever darkening world. Maybe, just maybe, as the world turns darker, those seeking the truth will see our light shine even brighter as this age comes to a close.

We're beating against the gates of hell in the name of Jesus and those gates cannot prevail against us as we break through them to rescue our brothers and sisters, armed with the sword of the spirit which is the word of God.

As every day passes, the story we take with us into eternity grows in length and in detail. Now is the time to begin moving forward with more urgency, adding a new chapter to our story as we go forward from here. Time is short.

When we get to heaven and share our story with the saints that have gone before us, what amazing things will your story hold?

If you like this article, or any of the other information on this web site, please consider following me. You'll be one of the first to be notified when I create new content! You'll find the section at the top of the right hand column on this page. It says, "Follow Tribulation Harvest by Email." After entering your email address, you may be prompted to sign in to your Google account. Thank you!!!

Repent and be forgiven!  Believe and be saved!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Experiencing Tribulation After Rapture Packets - The Reboot

If you'd like to see a shorthand version of this article, click here. If you want to read a more in-depth article describing the contents of this packet and how I created some of the content, please continue reading.

I also have a video on YouTube that goes through everything that I have in the After Rapture Packet. It's 30 minutes long, but I think it's very informative.

This article describes my efforts to reboot my original Experiencing Tribulation After Rapture Packets (ARP's). First, you may be asking yourself what an after Rapture packet is. Well, I'll tell you. ARP's are packets of information that can be left behind for those who are left behind after the Rapture. These packets of information provide the information that explains what just happened (the Rapture) and what's coming next (the Tribulation and everything that entails). It also provides the individual with the information necessary to guide them into a relationship with Jesus, so that they, too, may repent and be forgiven, and believe and be saved. 

I have already given some to unsaved family and friends and to those who hold to a false belief that their association with a particular religion or being a member of a particular church will bring them salvation. I've also mailed some out to born again believers I've met through social media who have expressed a desire to receive a copy so that they can leave it behind, in their home, for loved ones to find after they, themselves, have been raptured. 

Full disclosure: I provide ARP's free of charge and make absolutely no money off of them. Any donations I may receive, go directly back into producing more packets. I already have a covenant with God that I will not use any money from this ministry for personal gain. It all goes back into the ministry to purchase more supplies. I don't even pay myself for the time spent creating the content or assembling the packets.

Here is what I have included in my After Rapture Packets and how I put everything together. Your packet will be different, because there's no hard and fast rule on what you can pack into yours. Of course, you'll definitely want to include materials explaining salvation and include a bible of some sort, whether it's the complete bible, a single New Testament, or even just the Gospel of John, if that's all you can afford right now. I just wanted to provide you with some sort of outline on the types of information you might want to put in your packet. 

Another piece of advice I have for you is to be consistent in the content of your packets. Be sure the same information is included in all of the packets. If you've spent all that time putting together what you consider to be the perfect packet, make all of them perfect by assembling them all the same. 

The DVD Reboot
Original Version
The original content on this DVD was a single video from a particular ministry, whose information was plastered on my label instead of my own ministry's branding (Don't worry, I emailed them and asked for permission to use their video). After considering my options, I realized that the DVD needed a total reboot, content and labeling. I grabbed a few Christian videos I hoped weren't going to be judged to be too preachy and content that wouldn't go over their head and just confuse whoever was watching it (after all, I wanted to share the milk, not the meat of the word). I even made the great leap to create some of the content myself. I was actually surprised at how well my bit it turned 

Once the video content, including closing credits, was gathered into one place, I burned the contents on to a single DVD and played it back to be sure everything transferred over to the DVD as planned. When I was satisfied, I burned all of the other DVD's. 

Then the labels were created and printed off. There's more information about that below. After the labels were printed, they were left to dry before I sat down to adhere them to the front of the DVD's. Again, there's more information about that below. Then they were all slipped into their own individual sleeves with the labels point outwards. The following are the items you'll need to label your DVD's.

Items needed: 
-DVD's (blank or burned)
-DVD/CD envelopes (I opted for the envelopes that offer a clear window in the front. Why cover up your hard work, right?)
-DVD Labels (Important: Don't use CD labels, even though they are most likely less expensive. DVD players run at a higher temperature than CD players, and the DVD labels are made with a stronger adhesive to stick to the DVD's in the higher temps they will be experiencing. Also, by using Avery labels, I was able to go to their web site to create the content on the labels. Most of that content was mine.
-DVD/CD label applicator (I suggest using an applicator because it will center the labels perfectly and prevent the DVD's from wobbling in the DVD player because of a label placed off-center.)

A lot of time and effort went into finding the right content for the DVD. It's difficult to find good content that won't be considered by the unsaved to be "too preachy" or "confusing." They need milk, not meat, and we need to consider that when deciding what videos we'd like include on the DVD. 

The photo on the top shows the older version of the DVD label. I think you'll agree that the new version below it is a vast improvement!
Rebooted Version

The new DVD labels contain the following info:
-The name of my small ministry, "Tribulation Harvest."
-The slogan of my small ministry, "Repent and be forgiven! Believe and be saved!"
-The title of the DVD, "Experiencing Tribulation."
-The total length of the DVD, "73 Mins."
-The fact that it's a free DVD
-My own QR Code

If you would like to see a video of how I attached the labels to the DVD's you can click here. This link will bring you to my YouTube video on the project. Note: You'll need to wear earphones and hike your volume up to max to hear my voice on the video. For some reason the audio is very low on that video.

Experiencing Tribulation Booklet Reboot
You won't find this in any store. I created this booklet myself so that I could bring the reader through the scriptures, from the moments just after the Rapture takes place, to the resulting chaos, to the rise of the Antichrist, and ending with the Lord's return. I quote scripture (mostly from Revelation) and then paraphrase what God is revealing to us through His word. At the end of the booklet is a message about repentance and salvation. 

Original Version
Rebooted Version
(The vibrant green color was
washed out by the scanner)
The reboot created a booklet that was more pleasing to the eye, both inside and out, which may help carry the reader on to each successive section of the booklet. One thing about a project like this one, you can always find something that you feel can be rewritten. It gets to the point where you have to force yourself to stop and just complete the project or you'll never finish it.   

Here's a tip... I didn't use the settings for a booklet in my word processing software because it wouldn't allow me to create the margins I was looking for, which made this project much more involved. Of course, that was about 8 years ago, and maybe word processing software has improved. So here's the way I did it. This would be so much easier to explain if I made a video. Maybe I'll get around to doing that, but not

Step 1 was to create two columns of text on a landscaped 8.5x11 sheet. I linked those columns together and linked them to columns on the other pages and began typing away. The text blocks were all linked to each other, so as I filled up one text block, it automatically jumped over to the next text block, allowing me to continue to type without having to click on the individual text blocks to enter my text. 
Step 2 was to cut each two columned sheet in half to create individual one sided pages, so each 8.5x11 sheet produced two pages. 
Step 3 was to count the pages and then grab some blank copy paper, folding them in half to create a crease. Then they were temporarily put together like the pages of a book. I numbered each one in the center of the page with the page number.
Step 4 was to take each individual page and carefully tape them to the center of the folded booklet so that the pages, when turned, would be in the right order. 
Step 5 was to take them to my local office supply store and print each double sided page. Because they were taped to the page, I made sure to set the printer to accept two single sided pages and then double side it, that way it didn't grab my double sided taped booklet and rip everything apart. I copied one side and just flipped the page over and let the printer copy the second side before it did it's thing. I did that for all the pages. I also printed the cover double sided.
Step 6 was to purchase a ream of colorful paper that I could use for the cover. I had everything planned out so that not only the outside of the cover contain information, but the inside as well. Space was precious, so I made sure every page had content.
Step 7 was to print off the double sided cover at home, so I could include some color in the cover.
Step 8 was to collate all the pages into individual packets and then fold them in preparation for stapling. 
Step 9 was the actual stapling of the booklet. I had thought about using cord or some other material to "sew" the binding, but I ultimately decided to use a stapler. I was going to purchase one of those staplers with the extended arm to do the work, but I ended up saving money and using what I had. I put a piece of cardboard under the booklet, turned it right-side up, and used the open stapler to push two staples into the center crease of the booklet. The sharp points dug into the cardboard. I pulled the booklet off of the cardboard, flipped it over, and used a butter knife to push the ends of the stapler over, securing it to the booklet.

Tribulation Timeline
Tribulation Timeline
I've created something I like to call a Tribulation Timeline. This was easy to create compared to the booklet. The Tribulation Timeline is an 8.5x11 double sided sheet of colorful printer paper that breaks down what will happen during the Tribulation and when it will happen. It's actually a shorthand version of the booklet. It's not as complicated and as intricate as a lot of the timelines out there, but it works. The front side briefly breaks down the Seven Seals, the Seven Trumpets and the Seven Vials/Bowls. It also places these events in either the first half of the Tribulation or the second half. It also contains information about the return of Jesus, the enemy's temporary imprisonment, Christ's thousand year reign, the enemy's release from imprisonment and what occurs as a result, and then Jesus's response. This timeline is folded in half and is tucked in the center of the booklet. The other side of the page explains the reason why the enemy is temporarily imprisoned and then released after a thousand years and includes a section that warns the reader that time is short...that the countdown until Christ's return has begun and that there's no guarantee that they'll survive the entire Tribulation period, so it's imperative that they repent immediately!

Bible Reboot
When I first started this packet, I purchased some inexpensive paperback New Testament bibles that did not include any information about salvation, so I created some labels for the inside cover. They contained information that lead the reader through the salvation message from beginning to end. The labels provided scripture references and their corresponding page numbers to make it easier for the new believer to find. I assumed that new believers would be unfamiliar with the chapter/verse arrangement of the bible. To draw the reader's eye immediately to the scripture quoted on that page, I also underlined or highlighted those particular verses. 

If you're going to use this idea, I would suggest that you choose one bible and stick with it. A paperback bible from publisher #1 won't have the same set up as a paperback bible from publisher #2, so stick with the same version from the same publisher unless you don't mind updating your labels.

The reboot I did on this one involved both the physical profile of the bible and the version that I was going to use. Gone was the shorter and thicker NT in favor of a sleeker version. The KJV had also been traded in for the NASB, and I'll explain why. 

New Testament
When thinking abut the KJV, I became concerned that people would pick up that version and have difficulties understanding it. My goal for the After Rapture Packets is to make things as easy as possible for someone to understand the content, and to me, that meant switching from the version that was more difficult to read and understand to the version that held close to the original text as well, the NASB. I know there are KJV purists out there, but whoever accesses the ARP's won't have much time left on this earth. Two thirds of the earth's population is going to die during the seven-year Tribulation, so there's an urgency to explain as much as possible in the limited time left. If I was passing along the word of God to another generation of born again believers who were going to have a lifetime to read and learn, I most certainly provide a full bible, but these will be dangerous and treacherous times, and the NT is enough to get that individual on that straight and narrow road, which is what this is all about. That is also why I utilized the NASB version of scripture in the booklet mentioned in the previous section. I also opted to print off some labels containing the Tribulation Harvest web site, it's motto, and a blurb stating that the NT was provided free of charge through this ministry. They are affixed to the bottom of the front cover.

I opted to purchase only the paperback New Testaments for several reasons:
  • They're not expensive.
  • Since two thirds of the earth's population will expire before the Lord's return due to the three sets of judgments sent by God upon the world, most people will be living short lives. I felt it was better to leave them with information vital for their salvation, because that was the most important thing.
  • Owning a bible will most certainly be outlawed. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if there were organized bible burnings. Right now we live in a world where it's becoming more difficult to express our Christian beliefs without being labeled hateful, intolerant, homophobic, transphobic, Nazi's, etc... Remember, born again believers will be persecuted for not accepting the mark of the Beast and for not worshiping his image. If preaching and sharing the word of God can be considered hate speech in this day and age, imagine how it will be viewed under the authority of the Antichrist. A thin paperback New Testament will be less conspicuous hidden under clothing or or tucked away somewhere safe as apposed to having a thick bible containing both the OT and NT. Of course, that's just my humble opinion, and as I've said at the beginning of this article, the contents of your packets will be different from mine.

Tracts Reboot
Tracts are very useful. They provide a synopsis of what our sinful nature and spiritual condition is, what God has done to rectify this condition, and our need to repent of our sin... to be born again... so that Jesus can restore our relationship with our heavenly Father by transforming us through His Holy Spirit. Finding a tract without a "pray this prayer" section at the end can be difficult to find, but it's not impossible. If you want to know why I try hard to find bibles and tracts that don't include a "pray this prayer" section, click here and read another article on this web site about how I feel about that subject. 

The nice thing about tracts is that they're easy to obtain. You may be able to pick some up at your church or you can purchase some at a local brick and mortar store or online. They're relatively inexpensive. My ARP's contain a variety of tracts that all give the same basic message, but in different ways. It's important to remember that we don't know what audience we'll be reaching, so an assortment of tracts is a way of giving the message of salvation in different ways to people who have various personalities and respond to the written words. Some tracts have powerful artwork and don't hold back any punches, some are drawn like a cartoon and are lighthearted. The rest are somewhere in between.  

To digress for a moment, the DVD described in one of the sections above was created in the same manner. There are three videos that are diverse in their approach to the subject of the Rapture and Tribulation. One is like a teaching video, one is like a heart to heart, person to person video and the one that was created through this ministry is just text and music. Then there are the animated videos that were included. Individuals who get their hands on the materials in the packet may be young or old. You have to try to make accommodations for a range of ages.

Getting back to tracts, my advice is to read as many as possible and find a select few that give the same message in different ways. When you've narrowed it down to a handful, stick with them. You can always add more to the collection as time goes by. I create and distribute tracts printed on business card sized stock, and when my stock runs out, I create new designs to print and distribute. Every time I create a new set, I make sure to take one of each and add them to my ARP's.

Packaging Everything Up, Including The Little Extras
There are several ways you can distribute this information. One way is to use plastic containers, boxes or bins and store it all together in the expectation that people are aware that they can enter your residence after the Rapture and collect this information. It's like a central hub for information. Others package their information in folders or manila envelopes. It all depends on how you want to distribute your information and what type of information is in your packet. If it's all printed material, then maybe a manila folder would work. On the other hand, if you're including a bible and other bulky information, then maybe another type of packaging would work better. 

At one point, I was using shrink wrap. I purchased the clear shrinkable envelopes and the electric sealer, but I realized there was a major problem with that. Although the sealed shrink wrap protected the contents, there was no way I could add to what I had already sealed in the package. If I found an item that would make a great addition to the packet (small business card sized scripture cards, book marks, cross necklace, etc...), I wouldn't be able to add it to the packet because the packet would have already been sealed and shrink wrapped. The solution, for me, was to find something resealable that was made in a material that would protect the contents from the elements. I opted to use zip-lock freezer bags. The plastic is pretty thick and it helps to protect the contents from dust, dirt and moisture. It's also easy to add anything you want at any time without ruining the packaging.

If you're giving a prepackaged packet to a family member or friend, you can unzip it and add a personal note or letter. You can also add personal photos and anything else that you think this particular individual would want to have after you're gone. You can even make your own DVD that personally addresses this individual... leaving a piece of yourself behind for them to watch and listen to once you're gone.

In Closing
As you can see, getting all the pieces of the puzzle in place can be pretty time consuming and will most likely involve some out of pocket expense, but the end result is worth it. Creating content is the toughest part of the entire process. Once you have the content, it's just a matter of copying that content over and over again, and that's easy.

Start by creating a generic resealable packet that can be given to anyone. If you wish, you can then take a few of those packets and update, upgrade and personalize them, tailoring them to the person or group you're passing it along to. 

How do I get them in the hands of my family and friends?  What I like to do is ask them if they would do me a personal favor and just take the packet and put it away somewhere safe. Then I say that if billions of people suddenly disappear (something they believe is just religious fanatic talk), then they have the information they need to understand exactly what has happened and what is coming next. They'll usually take the packet out of love, respect or courtesy.

I would like to hear from you if you have your own After Rapture Packet, what it contains, and how you've packaged it up! Please leave a comment below.

If you like this article, or any of the other information on this web site, please consider following me. You'll be one of the first to be notified when I create new content! You'll find the section at the top of the right hand column on this page. It says, "Follow Tribulation Harvest by Email." After entering your email address, you may be prompted to sign in to your Google account. Thank you!!!

Repent and be forgiven!  Believe and be saved!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

The Four Horsemen - The Rider On The White Horse

Go online and click on your favorite search engine. Type in "Four Horsemen of Revelation" and then click on images. In quite a few images that you find of the four horsemen spoken of in the book of Revelation, you'll find that the rider of the white horse is holding a bow and is pulling the string taut as he prepares to fire an arrow. The majority of the images of this rider also depict him as wearing a golden crown. There's a problem with these images... they're not accurate interpretations of the word of God.

Rider with arrow at the ready.
The book of Revelation states that the rider of the white horse has a bow, but it makes no mention of any arrow. Here, read it for yourself, "And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering and to conquer." Rev 6:2.  

Why do most pictures of this rider on the white horse show him ready to fire an arrow? I can only speculate, but you have to admit that a rider ready to let fly his deadly arrow makes for a dramatic scene, right? We also have to consider that artists often take liberties when it comes to creating artwork that pertains to scripture. Many artists may be relying on their own worldly understanding of who or what the four horsemen really are, relying on stories they've heard or images they've seen, perpetuating the false picture of arrows and golden crowns. No matter what the reason, the image does not line up with biblical truth.

Rider wearing a laurel crown.
What kind of crown is the rider of the white horse wearing?  "And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering and to conquer." Rev 6:2. There are two words for "crown" in the bible.  One is a "diadem," which is a kingly crown.  The other is a "stephanos," which is a victor's crown. In the case of the rider on the white horse, the latter is used in this scripture.  He's not wearing a gold kingly crown, he's wearing a victor's crown, like a crown of laurel leaves.

We are then told that, "he went forth conquering and to conquer."  That can be a little confusing, since he's not really wielding a formidable weapon, right? I'll explain that in a moment.

Let's paint this picture correctly now, shall we?  

"And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow;" The rider on the white horse symbolically has a weapon in his hand, but it is of no threat to anyone because a bow, without arrows, is really no weapon at all. This symbolizes that he will arrive on the scene as a man with a powerful but non-threatening personality. His choice of weapon will not be of military means, but of a personality that exudes confidence and authority, offering sound diplomatic solutions to the world's ills (especially the problems that have dominated the Middle East since the birth of Israel).

"...and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering and to conquer." The laurel crown that the rider is described as wearing is a symbol of the authority that he will have during this critical time in earth's history.  It is an authority that has not been earned by him, but, as the scripture states, an authority that is given to him. Who gives man authority, whether it's you, me or the Antichrist? You know the answer... God. God allows Satan to begin ramping up his end-time plan with the introduction of this rider on the white horse. 

So, what does he conquer? He conquers the minds and hearts of mankind. To the world, he will be seen as a "savior." He attempts to bring the world together in a one world system of government, religion and economics. You are probably telling yourself, "Surely everyone will see through this man." Your assumption would be incorrect. I say that because scripture also states, "And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness." 2 Thess 2:11-12.

Next time you see a picture of the rider on the white horse, check out the weapon he's holding and the crown he's wearing.  You'll find, like I did, that most of the artistic interpretations of this portion of scripture depict a rider with one or both of these errors contained in their artwork.

If you like this article, or any of the other information on this web site, please consider following me. You'll be one of the first to be notified when I create new content! You'll find the section at the top of the right hand column on this page. It says, "Follow Tribulation Harvest by Email." After entering your email address, you may be prompted to sign in to your Google account. Thank you!!!

Repent and be forgiven! Believe and be saved!