Update 996


Stepping Into the Ring / The Two Trees in the Garden of Eden

On November 13, 2021, Kalon Mitchell will present the sermonette, titled, “Stepping Into the Ring,” and Norbert Link will present the sermon, titled, “The Two Trees in the Garden of Eden.”

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.

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The Danger of Reductionism

by Eric Rank

People don’t like to think. The reasons why are not surprising when we consider what it takes to actively engage the mind. Thinking takes work, time, energy, concentration, and can even cause a modest amount of discomfort. I believe that we can all relate to some degree that it is often easier to find reasons to do anything else but think when we are faced with the need to think. Thinking is simply hard to do.

Knowing that it is difficult for people to actively engage their minds in mental exertion, we can see why people would rather believe in something “simple” even though it is wrong, rather than do the work of asking questions and seeking out the answers. It is more comfortable to believe in a simple explanation because it doesn’t require thinking.

However, quite often simple explanations focus only on a limited point of view, and reject anything that challenges such an explanation. Oversimplified explanations often get in the way of understanding the whole truth of a matter. This oversimplification is reductionism. Reductionist explanations sound good, but can be very misleading to people when a deeper understanding is needed.

Reductionist explanations can do great damage when applied in situations when more completeness is necessary. For example, if we believe that all we need to do to maintain a car is to put fuel in the gas tank, it won’t be long before no amount of gas will make it go. It is true that a car requires gasoline, but relying on an overly simplified solution that “for cars to function, they need gas” doesn’t paint the whole picture. We often need to consider more information when looking to understand how things work.

When we look at secular so-called Christianity today, it is easy to recognize reductionist reasoning in effect. People will hang all of their beliefs on a handful of Scriptures and ignore the others that contradict their belief without even realizing it. People can read over Scriptures, passages, chapters, and books in the Bible without taking the time to think about what the words mean, because thinking is hard work. For example, it is common for nominal Christians to quote John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life,” and stop there. It is appealing to read one Scripture and build an entire body of doctrine around it. Taken alone, one would think that all a person has to do is believe in Jesus Christ to have everlasting life. Yet people don’t ask what it means to believe in Christ. As we know, there is a lot more to becoming a fully converted Christian than a mere belief in the existence of Jesus. But asking questions that challenge such an appealing and simple belief structure is inconvenient.

Of course, we cannot place all of the blame on people who don’t take the time to think about the teachings of the Bible. Not everyone is called in this age to understand the Truth. God calls whom He will today, which excludes the vast majority (compare John 6:44-45, John 6:65). However, the warning of falling into the trap of reductionist explanations applies even to converted members, and gravely so. If we choose to pass too quickly over the teachings of the Bible and the Church, through God’s ministry, without taking the time to make sure we understand why those teachings are true, we place ourselves in a slippery place. Developing our understanding of the Truth that will lead us to salvation requires searching the Scriptures for more collaborating evidence, not reducing explanations to less.

Developing our understanding of the Truth requires the entire Bible. You don’t need to take my word for it either! The Word of God expresses this instruction with great clarity. In Jesus Christ’s response to the temptation of Satan, He said, “… ‘It is written, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God”’” (Matthew 4:4). We must take this to mean that all of the words of the Bible are there for us to use, and not ignore when the teachings are inconvenient to us, or when we might not yet understand what we learn. By using the entire Bible to help us build a complete understanding of the Truth, without corrupting it with the bias of our carnal nature, we will grow spiritually. But it takes some work to do it. “… For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept, Line upon line, line upon line, Here a little, there a little” (Isaiah 28:9-10).

Whether it is easy for us or not, it takes work to think and ask questions about what we learn if we want to develop our spiritual understanding. It is undoubtedly hard work to do. But we didn’t answer our calling from God because it would be an easy path for us. We answered our calling out of love for the Truth, knowing that this is the better way to live. We can be reassured that the work is worth the effort when we consider the instruction of Jesus Christ, “‘Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it’” (Matthew 7:13-14).

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by Norbert Link

We begin with interesting developments in America’s legal system regarding the highly contentious vaccination mandate which the Biden administration wants to impose on over 100 million Americans; address the hotly debated issue of vaccinations for very young children; speak on America’s and the entire world’s swift march into totalitarianism; and list examples of highly embarrassing conduct or comments by America’s president.

We point out questionable conduct by the FBI and Biden’s alleged conflict of interest; address the new infrastructure bill of over 1 trillion dollars which may not be as it appears; and another contemplated tax-and-spending package of over 2 trillion dollars, which, if adopted, would send America further into the dark abyss of the ever-rising national debt.  We also speak on America’s economy and its latest unemployment numbers, which, again, are not as good as many would like or represent them to be.

We also address rising tensions between the USA and Israel; and Israel’s preparation for the Temple service and the building of the Temple, as well as the “anointing” of the coming “Messiah.” In this regard, please view our new StandingWatch program, titled, A False Messiah in the Temple of God?” 

Turning to Europe, we speak on the border crisis between Poland and Belarus; speculations about France’s temporary leadership of Europe; Germany’s increased worldwide military involvement;  the relationship between the EU and Ethiopia; Austria’s new dictatorial  measures; thoughts on why Hitler did not invade the UK; the fight for UK’s fishery; and some ridiculous comments by Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.

We conclude with attempts to create “meat” without animals; and Donald Trump’s apparent inability to keep quiet when he should.

Throughout this section, we have underlined pertinent statements in the quoted articles, for the convenience and quick overview of the reader.

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Huge Setback for Biden’s Vaccine Mandate… for Now!

Deutsche Welle wrote on November 7:

“A US federal appeals court on Saturday issued a [temporary] stay on a decision by US President Joe Biden’s administration requiring tens of millions of Americans to be either vaccinated or tested weekly for COVID. Saturday’s ruling followed a backlash from conservative Republicans, who had vowed to overturn the rule. At least 27 states filed lawsuits challenging the requirement…

“The 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals cited  ‘grave statutory and constitutional’ issues with the vaccine requirement. Louisiana Attorney General Landry said the action stops President Joe Biden ‘from moving forward with his unlawful overreach… The president will not impose medical procedures on the American people without the checks and balances afforded by the constitution,’ Landry said in a statement…

“The Biden administration is also being sued by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis… over rules requiring employees of federal contractors to be vaccinated.”

Breitbart added on November 6:

“The ruling does not create legal precedent, but it is an important victory for challengers as it could signal which way the court would go on the merits as the case moves forward…

“In a final item that bodes ill for the Biden administration, the panel of the New Orleans-based appeals court wrote that all future cases, appeals, motions, and petitions on this issue in that jurisdiction shall be assigned to that same three-judge panel under this docket number. The judges are Edith Jones – an appointee of President Ronald Reagan and one of the most respected and brilliant conservative federal appeals judges in the nation, and Kyle Duncan and Kurt Engelhardt, both appointed by President Donald Trump.”

Lawsuits Galore

The Associated Press reported on November 5:

“Attorneys general in 11 states filed suit Friday against President Joe Biden’s administration, challenging a new vaccine requirement for workers at companies with more than 100 employees. The lawsuit filed in the St. Louis-based 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals argues that the authority to compel vaccinations rests with the states, not the federal government…

“Missouri was joined in the lawsuit by the Republican attorneys general of Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming. The office of Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller, a Democrat, also joined in the suit, along with several private, nonprofit, and religious employers.

“The Daily Wire, a conservative media company, filed a challenge in federal court on Thursday. So did companies in Michigan and Ohio represented by a conservative advocacy law firm.”

With all these pending lawsuits and the Biden administration’s position that federal law supersedes state law in this case, the Supreme Court will surely have to get involved. What the divided Supreme Court will decide is anyone’s guess. In addition, as the next article shows, there are many states, run by Democrats, which enforce OSHA regulations, showing the existence of totalitarian rule in America. We include in this edition numerous articles which point out this troublesome fact.

What the New Biden Mandate Would Do

 The Associated Press wrote on November 5:

“The Biden administration’s sweeping new COVID-19 mandate will apply to 84 million workers at mid-size and large companies… A separate rule requires workers at health care facilities that receive federal Medicare and Medicaid payments to be vaccinated. This rule, from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, will apply to 17 million workers at 76,000 health care facilities, including hospitals and long-term care facilities…

“Employers must give workers paid time off to be vaccinated and to recover from any side effects. Vaccinations will be paid for by the federal government, though employees may have to pay for testing… OSHA says it will enforce the new rules… by relying largely on whistleblower complaints and some limited spot checks… The agency said it will work with companies to have employees vaccinated but would fine them up to $13,653 for each violation. Companies must collect proof of employee vaccinations and keep records. And employers must prove that unvaccinated employees have taken tests approved by the Food and Drug Administration, and that the tests are properly administered…

“The rules do not apply to employees who work alone, at home or outdoors. In addition, workers may apply for religious or medical exemptions. Nicholas Hulse, an employment lawyer at Fisher & Phillips LLC, noted that companies that have issued their own vaccine mandates are already being deluged with requests to be excused from vaccine requirements. Normally, Hulse said, religious exemption requests are straightforward: Someone, say, requests Sundays off to attend church or observe a day of rest. Now, he said, it will be ‘difficult to tell if (anti-vaccine) beliefs are sincerely held, or are they just trying to use religion to get an accommodation?’…

In 28 states and U.S. territories that enforce OSHA regulations, the new rule will cover both public and private employers. These states and territories are:

“Alaska, Arizona, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Tennessee, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and Wyoming. In the remaining states and territories, public employees are not covered by the new mandate.

“…A Kaiser Family Foundation survey last month found that 37% of unvaccinated workers say they would leave their job if they were required to get jabbed or submit to weekly tests — a figure that rises to 70% if testing isn’t an option…

“Only 10 times has OSHA issued an emergency rule, which allows it to bypass normal administrative procedures, including the need to seek public comment. Until it issued an emergency rule in June covering COVID risks in the health care industry, it hadn’t done so in 38 years. And no wonder: The courts have overturned four emergency rules and partially blocked a fifth, according to a review by the Congressional Research Service. To fast-track its rules, the agency must show that it’s acting to protect workers from a ‘grave danger.’”

This approach by the Biden administration constitutes dictatorship to the extreme, no matter how courts will decide the issue. And this might not be all.

Breitbart wrote on November 4:

“The Biden-Harris administration on Thursday is weighing if they should expand the vaccine mandate for companies employing fewer than 100 employees… [OSHA] is ‘seeking comment to help the agency’ determine if smaller employers with fewer than 100 employees can implement a coronavirus vaccine mandate ‘without undue disruption.’”

And now, the Biden administration is even going after the children. Note the next article.

Vaccinating Young Children against Corona?

WND News Center wrote on November 3:

“A former surgeon at the John Hopkins Children’s Center is describing the Biden administration’s move to vaccinate young children for COVID-19 as a ‘giant experiment’, arguing there is no sufficient data to determine the long-term risks posed by the shots. ‘Do we want to put our children at risk, when we know that the risk of the disease to them is relatively small, but we don’t know what the future risks are? Why would we do a thing like that? It makes no sense whatsoever,’ said Dr. Ben Carson in a Sunday interview with Maria Bartiromo on Fox News’ ‘Sunday Morning Futures.’

“Carson, renowned for his innovative surgeries to save the lives of children, is former director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center. He previously served as secretary of Housing and Urban Development in the Trump administration. Bartiromo asked Carson whether or not young children should receive the COVID-19 vaccine. ‘Absolutely not,’ he replied… Carson also pointed to studies showing natural immunity ‘is very, very effective.’

“Dr. Carson is supported in his opposition to child injections for COVID-19, with other health experts voicing their opinions on the matter. Dr. Martin Kulldorf, professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, member of FDA and CDC scientific advisory committees stated: ‘I don’t think children should be vaccinated for COVID… COVID is not a huge threat to children.’

“Dr. Harvey Risch, professor of Epidemiology in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at the Yale School of Public Health and Yale School of Medicine, had a clear vision of what he would do if schools mandate the vaccine. ‘If the child has chronic conditions that make their risk appreciable, then there is reason that they should be considered for vaccination. Other than that, if it were my child, I would (remove them from public school and) homeschool them,’ he stated.

“Meanwhile, Dr. Sunetra Gupta, infectious disease epidemiologist and professor of theoretical epidemiology at the Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, argued against injecting children, who were ‘unlikely to benefit’ from such an intervention…

“Dr. Robert Malone, virologist and immunologist known for his work developing mRNA vaccine technology, declared ‘There is absolutely no scientific or medical justification for vaccinating children, in my opinion.’”

KUSI San Diego reported on November 3:

“The CDC recommended the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for children aged 5-11 years old on Tuesday, following the FDA’s authorization of its use for those in that age group.

“Dr. Kelly Victory, Emergency Medicine and Disaster Specialist, joined KUSI’s Ginger Jeffries on Good Evening San Diego to discuss what parents should consider before giving their children a COVID-19 vaccine. Dr. Victory described that the risk of the vaccine far outweigh the risks of [not] vaccinating children with a COVID-19 vaccine.”

Parents should research this issue very carefully.

America’s Totalitarianism… Much Worse Than Imagined

The Ron Paul Institute republished an article by Children’s Health Defense, dated November 7:

“Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. last month delivered a speech at the 2021 Ron Paul Institute ‘Pandemic and the Road to Totalitarianism’ conference. In his speech — described by the Ron Paul Institute as ‘a compelling indictment of the mad push to total control’ — Kennedy said the techniques used by government officials during the COVID pandemic to ‘edge people into subservience’ come straight out of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) manuals he researched for his book, ‘American Values.’…

“Kennedy described a recent simulation, Event 201, a pandemic ‘tabletop exercise’ that simulated a global pandemic nearly identical to COVID. The event took place in October 2019 at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security. Dr. Tom Inglesby, director of the Center for Health Security, facilitated the simulation. Bill Gates of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, global health officers and people from social media groups, large pharmaceutical companies and global corporations attended or sent representatives.

“Kennedy said: ‘…They were simulating a pandemic, but they weren’t simulating a medical response to that pandemic. They were simulating a militarized response. How do you use that pandemic to, particularly in that Event 201, to impose censorship globally? And that’s what they were modeling.’

“Describing CIA operations and organized mind control programs at top universities… Kennedy said the same techniques are used in today’s lockdowns: ‘The most potent technique,,, was isolation … And they did this in sensory deprivation tanks … and also just locking people in solitary confinement. You can get [people] to do almost anything you want after a certain period of time. It will drive them mad… If a government can hide what it’s doing by censoring its opponents and silencing dissonants, it has license to do anything that it wants,’ Kennedy said.

“He said what happens when you have a population of fear, ‘you have the complete obliteration of critical thinking, and then people stop asking questions.’

“Kennedy described how the rules and regulations handed down during the pandemic have been manipulated to [the] point where no one recognizes the country as a democracy anymore. ‘So there are all these democratic protections that were waived… All of these things were imposed upon us by fiat — with no discussion, no science cited.’

“Kennedy cited parallels in books he’s read by George Orwell and science fiction writer, Robert Heinlein, with what he sees all over the civilized world… ‘what’s happening now is this lockstep imposition of totalitarian controls — not just in America, but in every one of the liberal democracies in the world, and all of the other countries in the world. ‘China moved into Hong Kong and banned the last democratic newspaper. Everywhere in the world, we see democracy and constitutional rights disappearing. And it all happened at once, as if it was planned.’…”

It is planned indeed by none other than Satan, the god and ruler of this world.

Joe Biden’s Presidency… Scary!

The New York Post wrote on November 4:

“President Joe Biden ‘may not have been fully briefed about the actions of his very own Justice Department,’ the ACLU said, after [he] angrily called a report that Justice would give $450,000-per-person payoffs to illegal immigrant families separated at the border ‘garbage.’…

“So either: 1) Biden is unaware of the deal and the progressives that dictate all policy through Chief of Staff Rob Klain are doing it on their own. 2) Biden is lying. 3) Biden was told and forgot.

“All of these scenarios seem plausible; none inspire confidence in this president. Scary…”

Biden’s selective memory and his outright lies have been the topic of much discussion recently. Note the next articles.

Biden’s flip-flops

APP reported on November 6:

“US President Joe Biden said Saturday he supported compensation for families of immigrants separated from their children at the Mexican border under the ‘zero tolerance’ policy of Donald Trump… The US departments of Justice and Homeland Security have been negotiating with affected families who have sued the government, the Wall Street Journal reported in late October. It said payments could run as high as $450,000.

“Asked about that report on Wednesday, Biden said it was ‘garbage’… A White House spokesperson… later clarified that… Biden was ‘perfectly comfortable” with the idea of compensation’…”

Biden’s flip-flops are more than just embarrassing. What a terrible message of incompetence and ignorance is being given to America’s friends and enemies!

The White House and the left-wing mass media later tried to spin it (what else is new?) in saying that Biden was just objecting to the figure of $450,000. But that was NOT what Biden was asked and what he responded to.

Biden clearly not in charge

Fox News reported on November 6:

“Biden claimed he would be in ‘real trouble’ for taking another question from the press Saturday following remarks about the passage of a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill… The president has a history of saying he will be in hot water with his staff for taking media questions… In April, the president again claimed he would be ‘in trouble’ if he continued to take questions from reporters after speaking about new federal health guidelines for mask wearing for vaccinated and non-vaccinated Americans…

“Biden’s press secretary Jen Psaki has also said that Biden taking reporter questions’ is ‘not something we recommend.’“

Biden also stated repeatedly that before taking questions from reporters, he had been “instructed” as to whom to call upon. He is clearly not in charge… but who is? We are confronted with an utter picture of total confusion.

Biden and FBI in Cahoots by Illegally Raiding Homes of Journalists?

Fox News wrote on November 6:

“The FBI  raided the home of Project Veritas founder James O’Keefe as part of a federal investigation into the ‘stolen’ diary of President Biden’s daughter, Ashley Biden. The New York Times reported the raid took place early Saturday morning just days after the homes of two Project Veritas associates were also the subject of search warrants…

“Fox News legal analyst Gregg Jarrett appeared on ‘Hannity’ Friday and stressed there’s a ‘huge difference’ between what Ashley Biden’s attorney has alleged that her diary was stolen versus what O’Keefe alleged about it being left behind in a room, saying ‘one’s a crime and the other one isn’t.’ ‘Project Veritas did the right thing,’ Jarrett told Fox News’ Sean Hannity. ‘They didn’t publish this because they couldn’t verify the authenticity of the documents, but the other conservative website did publish it but they claimed they did verify it. What is so bewildering about this is why in the world would the feds even [be] involved in it.’

“Jarrett insisted that even if the diary was the subject of a theft, it would be a ‘state crime’ rather than a federal crime and that the investigation, which allegedly began under Attorney General William Barr, has become an ‘enormous conflict of interest’ with President Biden now in office. ‘A journalist cannot be criminally prosecuted for publishing stolen material unless the journalist himself or herself is involved in the theft. There’s no indication of that,’ Jarrett said. ‘And the same is true of leaked classified information. Journalists have never been prosecuted for that, although the leakers have when they’re identified.. [This story is] deeply troubling. They would barge into the homes of two journalists armed with a search warrant signed off by a federal judge and the Department of Justice, presided over by Joe Biden, this smacks of a political investigation and potential prosecution.’”

Whatever happened to the FBI’s investigation of the alleged criminal acts by Biden’s son Hunter, with the alleged knowledge and/or collaboration of Joe Biden?

House Passes Infrastructure Bill

The Washington Post wrote on November 5:

“House lawmakers late Friday adopted a roughly $1.2 trillion measure to improve the country’s roads, bridges, pipes, ports and Internet connections… The bipartisan 228-to-206 vote… proved littered with political conflict, pushing to the limits a fractious party with still-widening ideological fissures. Democrats initially hoped to approve the infrastructure bill on Friday along with a separate, roughly $2 trillion proposal [the ‘Build Back Better Act,’] to overhaul the nation’s health care, education, immigration, climate and tax laws. Doing so would have advanced two spending initiatives that have been stalled on Capitol Hill for months.

“Instead, House Democrats started only to debate, but did not finalize, the $2 trillion tax-and-spending package. Facing new delays, that bill remained bogged down in the broader war between liberals, who are eager to spend now that they are in the majority, and moderates, who continue to question the fiscal impacts of the bill.

“In the end, it was a bipartisan coalition of Democrats with the aid of 13 Republicans that helped propel the infrastructure proposal to passage… The bill includes more than $110 billion to replace and repair roads, bridges and highways, and $66 billion to boost rail, making it the most substantial such investment in the country’s passenger and commercial network since the creation of Amtrak about half a century ago. Lawmakers provided $55 billion to improve the nation’s water supply and replace lead pipes, $60 billion to modernize the power grid and billions in additional sums to expand speedy Internet access nationwide.

“Many of the investments aim to promote green energy and combat some of the country’s worst sources of pollution. At Biden’s behest, for example, lawmakers approved $7.5 billion to build out a national network of vehicle charging stations… the package also allocates another roughly $50 billion to respond to emergencies including droughts, wildfires and major storms.

“… Democrats ultimately worked out an arrangement that allowed for the adoption of the infrastructure bill in exchange for a pledge from moderates that they would hold a vote on the other spending package [the’ Build Back Better Act’] by Nov. 15, providing the spending plan does not add to the deficit, as Democrats have promised… Still, the arrangement did not satisfy the entire party: Six left-leaning Democrats…  ultimately voted against the measure…

“To be sure, the final bill is far less than what the White House initially sought. And lawmakers jettisoned some of Biden’s plans to pay for the package, which he initially had hoped to finance through tax increases on wealthy Americans and corporations — unwinding the tax cuts enacted under Trump in 2017. Instead, Congress relied on a pastiche of mechanisms that experts predict may not raise as much as some lawmakers say, including new reporting requirements on cryptocurrency that could be subject to legal challenge….”

The Guardian wrote on November 6:

“Progress on Biden’s agenda comes at a particularly difficult moment for the president. His approval ratings have slumped amid concerns over rising inflation, an unshakable pandemic and a harried withdrawal from Afghanistan. Biden departed for a pair of international summits without securing progress on domestic agenda, only to be met upon his return by news of his party’s poor showing in races across the country on Tuesday.

“In Virginia, a state he won by 10 points in 2020, Republicans won the governor’s race, and came much closer than expected to denying the Democratic governor of New Jersey a second term. The grim results helped jolt Democrats into action on Capitol Hill, where leaders hope enacting their ambitious agenda will help the party regain momentum and improve their electoral prospects ahead of next year’s midterm elections….”

So it’s all for votes? It has been pointed out that the Infrastructure Bill does little, if anything, for the average American who is struggling with having to pay for astronomically high gas prices and groceries. Also, the Damocles sword of the increasing national debt, which can never be repaid, is hanging over America. This is not even addressing the second contemplated bill—the tax-and-spending package called the Build Back Better Act—which would cost another 2+ trillion Dollars. The claim by Democrats that this would not add to the national deficit is just ludicrous.

America’s situation is hopeless. It will take the return of Jesus Christ and the establishment of a righteous and sane government to clear up the mess.

“U.S. Economy added 531,000 Jobs in October”

This headline, as quoted above from Breitbart, does not tell the whole story.  Note the article by CNS News on November 5:

“The Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics announced on Friday that 100,450,000 people in this country were not in the labor force in October, up 38,000 from the 100,412,000 in September… Persons who are neither employed nor unemployed are not in the labor force. This category includes retired persons, students, those taking care of children or other family members, and others who are neither working nor seeking work.

“Among those not in the labor force in October, 1.3 million persons said they were prevented from looking for work due to the pandemic… In October, 3.8 million persons reported that they had been unable to work because their employer closed or lost business due to the pandemic.”

Tensions between Israel and USA on the Rise

Israel 365 wrote on November 8:

“Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, formerly political opponents, closed ranks to oppose the Biden administration’s plan to open a consulate to the Palestinian Authority in Jerusalem… ‘There is no place for an American consulate that serves the Palestinians in Jerusalem,’ Bennett said… ‘Jerusalem is the capital of Israel alone.’… emphasizing that ‘sovereignty in Jerusalem belongs to one country — Israel.’

“The issue of the consulate is just one piece in the growing divide between the current White House administration and Israel. Just two weeks ago, the State Department rebuked Israel for branding six NGOs as terror groups after it was discovered they had deep ties with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). Israel claims that it has proof that while claiming to serve humanitarian functions, the organizations in fact funneled foreign funds to the terrorist organization.

“At the same time, the State Department condemned Israel for its recently published plans to allow Jews to build several housing units in Judea and Samaria, a region the Biden administration would like to reserve for a Palestinian state that is ethnically cleansed of Jews.

“Another rift is the efforts by the Biden administration to reinstate… the Iran nuclear deal… Nikki Haley, the former US Ambassador to the United Nations warned that Israel should not rely on the US to protect its security interests regarding Iran.  ‘If Israel makes the grave decision that its security depends on removing that threat, it should not wait for an American green light… If a politician supports the disastrous Iran deal, opposes moving the American embassy to Jerusalem, and is embraced by anti-Semites who support the [Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions] movement, then a pro-Israel group should have absolutely nothing to do with him or her.’”

Strong words, and really frightening developments.

Anointing Oil and a New Temple in Jerusalem

Israel 365 wrote on November 8:

 “The Sanhedrin is moving forward to prepare enough [special oil] to anoint the Messiah from the House of David who, when he returns, will rule over Israel in the Messianic era.

“Rabbi Hillel Weiss, the spokesman for the Sanhedrin…  emphasized that a Kohen Gadol (High Priest) and Temple utensils will be anointed when the Temple service begins, which does not need an actual Temple structure, only an altar… ‘We are now entering the time when the preparations for the Temple are almost complete,’ Rabbi Weiss said. ‘Now is the time for people to act, to show whether they will be part of the Temple or stand against the reappearance of God’s house in Jerusalem.’”

Also, daily animal sacrifices may begin in Jerusalem before a Temple is built, but the Temple will exist when the man of sin and lawlessness will occupy it, sitting in God’s Temple and proclaiming that he is God—perhaps saying that he is Jesus Christ who, he might claim, has returned. It is interesting in that context that Rabbi Weiss also announced that special oil is being prepared for the anointing of the returning Messiah. Of course, the real Messiah, Jesus Christ, will not be anointed by human beings… but a false Messiah might be. Further, most Jews do not believe in Christ as being the Messiah.

Crisis at Belarus-Poland Border

The Guardian wrote on November 10:

“The [outgoing] German chancellor, Angela Merkel, has asked Vladimir Putin to intervene in the crisis on the Belarus-Poland border… In a phone call, Merkel told Putin that the ‘use of migrants by the Belarusian regime was inhuman and unacceptable and asked [Putin] to influence the regime in Minsk’, said the chancellor’s spokesperson, Steffen Seibert. The conversation came hours after Poland’s prime minister accused Putin of ‘masterminding’ the crisis on Belarus’s border with the EU… Russia has denied any involvement and blamed Europe [Deutsche Welle added in this regard on November 10 that Russia and Belarus blame the EU and Poland “for refusing to help potential asylum seekers…, with large groups of migrants stuck on the border in dropping temperatures. Between 2,000 and 4,000 migrants, reported to be mostly Kurds, have set up a camp near the barrier after failing to break through the fence on Monday.”]

Poland and Lithuania have declared a state of emergency on their borders with Belarus, where Lukashenko has been accused of ferrying asylum seekers from the Middle East to the EU’s borders as revenge for the bloc’s criticism of his crackdown on opposition… Polish prime minister, Mateusz Morawiecki… said Putin was determined to ‘rebuild the Russian empire’ and called the crisis at the border ‘a new kind of war, in which people are used as living shields’… Moscow has been an increasingly crucial ally for Belarus in the past year, backing Lukashenko after his brutal crackdown on protests and after his grounding of a Ryanair flight in May that set off a fresh round of sanctions and pushed Minsk further into isolation.

“EU countries have threatened new sanctions and accused Lukashenko of ‘human trafficking’ and ‘gangster-style’ tactics.”

Belarus or White Russia will continue to work with Russia against Europe. Ultimately, Ukraine will join Russia in that fight.

Europe’s Future?

The Economist wrote on November 8:

“The EU is divided when it comes to defence… A French-led summit on defence in the first half of 2022, with the European Commission as a cheerleader, will put the topic front and centre. Deciding how to treat America will be the main bone of contention. For France, America is an unreliable friend that ditches allies without warning in Afghanistan and snatches submarine contracts. For Poland and its eastern friends it is the only viable bulwark against Russian aggression…

“France will cement its role as the EU’s most influential government. Angela Merkel’s departure leaves a power vacuum at the top, which the French will happily try to fill. France has the rotating presidency of the EU for the first six months of the year, allowing it to shape the legislative agenda of the bloc…

“A test of French influence will be in the coming reforms to the Stability and Growth Pact. Resetting the rules, which dictate how much governments can spend, will be the main fiscal battle of 2022. France, Italy and Spain have long called for a loosening. Germany and the Netherlands insist things work perfectly well as they are. Sorting out the spending rules will be the most consequential decision taken by EU leaders in 2022…  the pact has provided neither stability nor growth: wide gaps in growth rates have emerged between northern and southern Europe in the past two decades, along with a subsequent political backlash. The EU gains its power from its economic clout…”

France might “lead” Europe for a short while… But it will be Germany which will ultimately lead. A united Europe is also described in the book of Revelation and elsewhere as an extremely rich economic power.

Germany’s Increased Military Involvement

Defense News wrote on November 5:

“The German Air Force is preparing to… deploy six Eurofighter aircraft, three Airbus A330 tankers and three A400M transport aircraft in support of Australia’s Pitch Black exercise, scheduled for Sept. 5-23, 2022… Germany is ready to play a bigger role in the Indo-Pacific region… This is the Air Force’s ‘first and biggest deployment’ of air assets to the Asia-Pacific region…

“This air deployment would follow the August 2021 deployment of the German Navy frigate Bayern. The ship is to spend six months at sea, with stops planned in 12 different ports including in Djibouti, Karachi, Diego Garcia, Perth, Guam, Tokyo and Shanghai. However, news outlet Deutsche Welle reported in September that China rejected the planned Shanghai stopover ‘after a period of reflection.’”

Joint European Military Force by Core Members Only?

 The Telegraph wrote on November 10:

“The European Union is considering controversial plans to allow the bloc to deploy a joint military force without the unanimous support of all its member states. Removing the need for unanimity would stop a country blocking the rapid reaction force of 5,000 troops from being sent to crisis situations independently of Washington and Nato… ‘Europe cannot afford to be a bystander in a world order that is mainly shaped by others,’ a draft of the document obtained by The Telegraph, said.

“[Josep Borrell, the EU’s foreign affairs chief] told a group of European newspapers smaller groups of member states could take joint action and ‘we cannot decide by unanimity every step of the process… Europe is in danger… All the threats we face are intensifying and the capacity of individual member states to cope is insufficient and declining.’… Brussels and Germany have long called for member states to be stripped of their effective veto on foreign policy such as EU sanctions so that the bloc can react more quickly to geopolitical challenges.”

EU and Ethiopia

Euractiv wrote on November 5:

“The EU is prepared to issue sanctions against those responsible for the war and humanitarian crisis in Ethiopia’s Tigray province, EU officials confirmed…

“A sanctions’ regime signed by US President Joe Biden covering those responsible for prolonging the conflict in northern Ethiopia, human rights abuses and obstruction of humanitarian access is now about to be implemented. Officials say it will include travel bans and asset freezes on ministers, military commanders and regional authorities, as well as restrictions on aid and assistance and prohibition of arms sales to either Eritrea or Ethiopia.

“In the meantime, the EU will continue to supply humanitarian aid, despite continued difficulties in aid reaching those in need… More than 400,000 people are estimated to be living in famine conditions in Tigray… and a hundred trucks are needed daily to provide critical humanitarian needs….

“The recent escalation of fighting in the Amhara region and the military advances of the TPLF and Oromo Liberation Army (OLA), as well as aerial bombardment by the Ethiopian Airforce of Mekelle, the main town in Tigray, threaten to make the war a truly national conflict. The European Union has already responded to the blockade of Tigray by blocking $107 million in budget support…”

Ultimately, Europe and Ethiopia might find themselves involved in a military confrontation.

Austria’s Newest Dictatorial Measures

Deutsche Welle wrote on November 6:

“Starting Monday, Austria will ban unvaccinated patrons from entering cafes, restaurants and large events… Under new rules that go into effect nationwide on Monday, those who cannot provide proof of full vaccination will not be allowed to enter places like restaurants, bars and hairdressers.

“Unvaccinated people will also be barred from hotels, events with more than 25 people and ski lifts… ‘We’re going to have to tighten the reins on the unvaccinated,’ Austrian Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg said…”

Especially Austria should be careful with dictatorial rule in light of their unpleasant history under Hitler.

Why Hitler Did not Invade the UK

Express wrote on November 5:

“Hitler completed the German invasion of France in June 1940 after British forces withdrew from Europe and evacuated from Dunkirk. After France fell to the Nazis, German air raids were then carried out across Britain from July 1940. The Royal Air Force eventually won the Battle of Britain, which resulted in the extension of World War 2 and the eventual defeat of Germany.

“However, after the invasion of France, the German leader also began plotting the invasion of England in July 1940… Germany never carried out the invasion of Britain and by 1941 the idea had been taken off the table..

“Files from German General Field Marshal Friedrich Paulus have been preserved in a Russian archive. Paulus, who had only recently been promoted to General, surrendered to the Soviet Union as he led an offensive on Stalingrad in 1943. While a Soviet prisoner of war, in 1946 he provided a detailed account of the Nazis’ plans to invade England…

“Friedrich Paulus cited four points as reasons for the permanent postponement: firstly, the risk of a ‘loss of prestige’ if the invasion had failed… Second, the hope that the mere threat of submarines and bombing would make Britain want peace. Thirdly, the… calculation of ‘not hurting the enemy’ in order to be able to forge an alliance later. Fourth, Hitler’s clear intention to attack the USSR since the summer of 1940.

“… Paulus… was one of the military leaders of the empire from late 1940 to early 1942… Paulus, who was Germany’s highest-ranking prisoner of war, was interrogated at length by the Soviets.”

Some of the reasons stated above were well-known for a long time. Another reason was that Hitler considered the British people as part of the “master race,” which he did not want to obliterate. The Bible shows, however, that in the future, Britain will be invaded and destroyed by a unified European power bloc.

The Fight for UK’s Fishery

Express wrote on November 5:

“[The UK fishing industry is] ready to be sacrificed in order to get the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement across the line… This week, even as President Macron temporarily delayed his threats to impose severe sanctions on the UK, Boris [Johnson] described the issue of fishing as ‘really vanishingly unimportant’ when compared to his pet project of COP26… While protecting the sovereignty of our waters may not be as flashy as standing up and making big speeches to billionaires and other world leaders, the Conservative Party won the votes of this country with promises to ‘Get Brexit Done’ and to protect our fishing industry

“If for a moment Macron feels French interests are not being given top priority, he will resurrect threats of trade tariffs and cuts to energy supplies, regardless of what is agreed in any ongoing talks, especially as we get nearer to the French Presidential elections next year. It is clear, President Macron does not believe Boris Johnson cares enough about UK fishermen to take drastic action… The current attitude of simply trying to sweep problems under the carpet will not work, and the PM’s failure to keep his promises to the UK fishing industry will not be forgotten…

“For example, it’s about time the UK makes the payment of the so-called ‘Divorce Bill’ conditional on the resolution of fishing talks and the end to French threats? In 2021 alone we are set to send £7 billion to the EU, with £5 billion to follow in 2022. Why on earth should we send this money to a hostile foreign organisation which so obviously has no interest in being our true ‘friend and partner’?…”

PM Boris Johnson is acting very weakly and indecisively. He is no match for President Macron or continental Europe, and the future will prove this.

Ridiculous Comparison by Archbishop Welby

The Daily Mail wrote on November 6:

“Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby has apologised for grotesquely claiming that the failure to act on climate change is worse than the failure to prevent Hitler’s murder of six million Jews.

“Britain’s ever-dwindling Christian community is crying out for a brave, compassionate leader focused on saving souls…”

The “fight” to combat climate change reaches more and more ridiculous levels.

“Real” Meat without Animals?

ABC News reported on November 5:

“Bay Area company Upside Foods opened a new lab Thursday designed to create real meat, but no animals will be present in this facility… Upside Foods says workers will take cells from animal tissue and create the meat inside their lab. They say they have a staff of 150 workers including dozens of scientists working on this type of cultivation… With their new lab, Upside Foods says the goal is to produce around 50,000 pounds of meat…

“‘The only things transported through our tubes are the cells and the meat,’ [Eric Schulze, Vice President of Product and Regulation] said. ‘Instead of growing a cow for 18 months before it hits the grocery store we can make the same meat in 14-21 days.’”

Sounds weird.

Trump Just Can’t Keep Silent

The Insider wrote on November 6:

“Former President Donald Trump baselessly claimed that Alec Baldwin might have purposefully shot crew members on the set of the movie ‘Rust.’ The  firing of a prop gun by Baldwin on set led to the death of the director of photography, Halyna Hutchins, and injured the director, Joel Souza. ‘He’s a troubled guy. There’s something wrong with him. I’ve watched him for years. He gets into fistfights with reporters,’ Donald Trump told conservative radio host Chris Stigall in a podcast on Thursday. ‘He’s a cuckoo-bird, he’s a nutjob. And usually, when there’s somebody like that, you know, in my opinion, he had something to do with it.’

“… In the police affidavit, Baldwin said that he was told that the gun was not loaded. Trump added that he thought Baldwin had behaved irresponsibly by pointing the gun at a crewmember, whether it was loaded or not… Trump said on the podcast that if he had been handed a gun, he would first discharge it into the air to make sure it wasn’t loaded… Trump suggested that Baldwin might have loaded the gun that killed Hutchins…

“The former president went on to say that he thought Baldwin’s impersonation of him on Saturday Night Live over the years was ‘terrible’… ”

Trump seems to be unable to be silent when his silence would be called for.

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.

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Does the Bible indicate how Satan looks?

We should first of all realize that there are many reports from people claiming to have seen Satan face to face, while supposedly appearing to them as a man. However, the Bible indicates that Satan cannot materialize himself to the human eye.

In our free booklet, “Angels, Demons and the Spirit World,” we say this:

“It appears from Scripture that demons cannot materialize themselves the way that angels can. Demons cannot appear as men. They can, however, create an illusion, or an apparition that might look very real to people. Examples of those illusions would include the appearance of ‘ghosts,’ or of a ‘lady,’ claiming to be ‘Mother Mary.’

“We read in Job 4:12–16 about Eliphaz’ encounter with a spirit: ‘Now a word was secretly brought to me, And my ear received a whisper of it. In disquieting thoughts from the visions of the night, When deep sleep falls on men. Fear came upon me, and trembling, Which made all my bones shake. Then a spirit passed before my face; the hair on my body stood up. It stood still, But I could not discern its appearance. A form was before my eyes; There was silence; then I heard a voice…’

“Eliphaz saw some kind of a form before his eyes but he could not discern the appearance of the spirit. This indicates that it was a demon, as the Bible does not show that God’s angels appear to man in such a way. It was something like an apparition—a phantasm. It was what the disciples thought they saw, too, when Jesus was walking on the water.

“Another encounter with a demon is recorded for us in 1 Samuel 28. This encounter is discussed in detail on pages 38 and 39 of our free booklet, ‘Do We Have an Immortal Soul?’  To summarize here, King Saul consulted a witch to find out his future. During a séance, the witch ‘saw’ a demon, who pretended to be the dead Samuel. Saul could not see the demon. The demon spoke through the witch to Saul. We note again that the demon did not materialize himself as a being with flesh and bones. Rather, it was an illusion.”

In another example, alluded to above, the disciples saw Jesus walking on water and were afraid, erroneously thinking it was a ghost or a spirit or an apparition (Mark 6:47-50).  They did not think at first that the incident was real, but just an illusion. In these illusions and “visions,” Satan may “appear” in the disguise of a human being, but that is not how he really looks. Likewise, Satan cannot show himself in our dreams. In that regard, please see our Q&A,

When it comes to the real appearance of Satan, he most certainly does not look as Hollywood might portray him in movies (not that we recommend ever watching these kinds of demonic horror flicks). Rather, he was created as a cherub. Known as Lucifer, he was a high-ranking angel, but he rebelled and sinned against God (Isaiah 14:12–15; Ezekiel 28:11–17). We say this in our above-mentioned booklet, “Angels, Demons and the Spirit World”:

“… before he was sent to earth, Lucifer had been trained in heaven before the very throne of God, and he had angels under his command. We read in Ezekiel 28:14 that he was the anointed cherub who covers. Recall that the cherubs covered the throne of God when God appeared to Moses in the Tabernacle. Also, we read in Ezekiel 28:14 that Lucifer was on the holy mountain of God in heaven (compare Hebrews 12:22). When he sinned by trying to ascend from this earth to heaven to dethrone God, he was cast out of the mountain of God (Ezekiel 28:16). Christ later said that He saw Satan fall from heaven like lightning (Luke 10:18).”

Lucifer, who had been created as a bright morning star or lightbringer, became the prince of darkness. His whole mindset and attitude changed from love to hatred. This had undoubtedly consequences for this outward appearance. Even though he likes to appear as an angel of light, his real appearance is one of horrific and abhorrent hatred and darkness, if one could see him in his real state, as God can. Even on the human level, a person who is absorbed and eaten up by hatred will show this in his or her facial expressions.

The Bible gives us numerous descriptions of the appearance of cherubs in their glorified state. Quoting from our booklet, “Angels, Demons and the Spirit World”:

“We find a very detailed description of their appearance in the book of Ezekiel. We read in Ezekiel 1:5–14: ‘Also from within it came the likeness of four living creatures. And this was their appearance: they had the likeness of a man. Each one had four faces, and each one had four wings. Their legs were straight, and the soles of their feet were like the soles of calves’ feet. They sparkled like the color of burnished bronze. The hands of a man were under their wings on their four sides; and each of the four had faces and wings. Their wings touched one another. The creatures did not turn when they went, but each one went straight forward. As for the likeness of their faces, each had the face of a man; each of the four had the face of a lion on the right side, each of the four had the face of an ox on the left side, and each of the four had the face of an eagle. Thus were their faces. Their wings stretched upward; two wings of each one touched one another, and two covered their bodies… As for the likeness of the living creatures, their appearance was like burning coals of fire, like the appearance of torches going back and forth among the living creatures. The fire was bright, and out of the fire went lightning. And the living creatures ran back and forth, in appearance like a flash of lightning.’

“We are later told that these four living creatures were ‘cherubim’ (Ezekiel 10:20–22). They were transporting a throne on which the ‘LORD’ sat. Notice Ezekiel 1:26–28: ‘And above the firmament over their heads was the likeness of a throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone; on the likeness of the throne was a likeness with the appearance of a man high above it… This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD.’ We are told, for instance, in Psalm 18:10 that the LORD ‘rode upon a cherub, and flew; He flew upon the wings of the wind.’

“Ezekiel 10:14 also reveals that the predominant facial features of a cherub are those of an ox. While we had read in Ezekiel 1:10 that the four cherubs had the face of an ox, a man, a lion, and an eagle, Ezekiel 10:14 lists those characteristics as the face a cherub, a man, a lion, and an eagle. Taken together, the Scriptures equate the predominant facial features of a cherub with that of an ox. Some have suggested that cherubs look mainly like oxen. Notice, though, that they are described with the ‘likeness of a man.’ Only their facial features and the soles of their feet are different from the ‘likeness of a man’ (in addition to the fact that they have wings)…

“Rienecker’s Commentary to the Bible points out that ‘cherubim appear where God is personally present or where He reveals Himself in His glory… The cherubim are witnesses of the personal presence of God on earth… Today, cherubs are pictured similar to the winged creatures, called “kurubu,” that have been dug out in Mesopotamia, Palestine and Syria.’ Some of these ‘kurubu’ look like creatures with a body of a lion, with wings, and with the head of a man, while others have the appearance of a man, with animal heads.”

However, the mere fact that in the incidents where cherubim are expressly described in the Bible, they do not have animal bodies, does not have to mean that none of the cherubs have an animal-like appearance.

There are other powerful angels which are described with spiritual bodies resembling different animals. We are quoting from our booklet on “Angels, Demons and the Spirit World”:

“… four very powerful angels—the ‘four living creatures’—are described in the fourth chapter of the book of Revelation in this way: ‘Before the throne [of God in heaven] there was a sea of glass, like crystal. And in the midst of the throne, and around the throne, were four living creatures full of eyes in front and in back. The first living creature was like a lion, the second living creature was like a calf, the third living creature had a face like a man, and the fourth living creature was like a flying eagle. The four living creatures, each having six wings, were full of eyes around and within. And they do not rest day or night, saying, “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!”’ (Revelation 4:6–8).

“Here we are introduced to angelic beings that look like a lion, a calf, and a flying eagle. One angelic being has the face of a man, implying that the rest of his appearance may not resemble that of a man. In addition, all have six wings.”

The Bible speaks also of seraphim, and we say this in our booklet, “Angels, Demons and the Spirit World”:

“The word ‘seraphim’ means ‘burning’ or ‘noble.’ These beings are depicted as standing above God’s throne, each having ‘…six wings: with two he covered his face, with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew’ (Isaiah 6:2). The voice of a seraphim is so powerful that ‘…the posts of the door were shaken by the voice of him who cried out’ (Isaiah 6:4). Isaiah 6:6 describes one of the seraphim as touching a burning coal with his hand.

“Whether this passage makes clear that seraphim look like men, is uncertain. The reference to ‘face,’ ‘feet’ and ‘hand’ might suggest this. On the other hand, the Hebrew word for ‘seraphim,’ ‘saraph,’ (compare Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, under ‘Seraphims’ and ‘Serpent’, Number 8314) is also used in other passages, describing dragons or serpents. We read in Isaiah 14:29, ‘Do not rejoice, all you of Philistia, Because the rod that struck you is broken; For out of the serpent’s roots will come forth a viper, And its offspring will be a fiery flying serpent.”’  The Hebrew word for ‘fiery serpent’ is ‘saraph.’ The New Jerusalem Bible gives the rendering, ‘a flying dragon.’ An additional passage can be found in Isaiah 30:6: ‘The burden against the beasts of the South. Through a land of trouble and anguish, From which came the lioness and lion, the viper and fiery flying serpent (‘saraph’ in Hebrew)…’

“Rienecker’s Commentary to the Bible states the following: ‘Passages such as Isaiah 14:29 and 30:6, describing flying seraphim (plural of saraph, translated by Luther as “flying dragon”, as well as Isaiah 6:2, 6, using the word to describe six-winged beings above the throne of God, go beyond the idea of an ordinary snake or serpent, and impress on the reader the concept of dragon-like creatures…”

It is interesting that seraphim are described as flying dragons or fiery flying serpents. Even though Satan is not identified as a seraph, but as a cherub, the parallelism is undeniable. Satan is described as a dragon. This does not seem to be a description of a person looking like a man. We read in Revelation 12:3 about Satan as “a great, fiery, red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads.”

We also read that the dragon spewed water out of his mouth like a flood [apparently referring to human armies] to destroy God’s people (Revelation 12:15-16).

We understand of course that much of this is symbolic language. The Roman Empire and its ten revivals are portrayed as a beast with seven heads and ten horns, and with ten crowns on his horns (Revelation 13:1-3). Also, a woman is described sitting on a scarlet beast, having seven heads and ten horns (Revelation 17:3), depicting the last seven revivals of the Roman Empire under Roman Catholic rule and influence. We also read that the dragon gives his power to the beast, and who is being worshipped (Revelation 13:3-4). It is also the dragon who sends out demons to the kings of the East to assemble them at Armageddon (Revelation 16:13, 16). But there are distinctions between the description of Satan, the great fiery red dragon, in Revelation 12 and the beasts in Revelation 13 and in Revelation 17. Nowhere in the Book of Revelation are these two beasts referred to as dragons. Satan’s designation as a dragon may not all just be a symbolical description.

Rather than saying that Satan is described symbolically in a way similar to the beasts (the Roman Empire and its revivals), because he controls the beasts and his description is therefore patterned after the beasts, it appears more likely that the two beasts are depicted as “physical” patterns after their spiritual ruler—Satan—which would give us a clue as to how Satan might look in his spiritual state.

In addition, we should remember that Satan is also described in Revelation 12:9 as “the great dragon… that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world.”  Compare also Revelation 20:2; 12:14-15.

In 2 Corinthians 11:3, Paul speaks of the serpent in the garden of Eden which beguiled Eve, clearly referring thereby to Satan the Devil.

In our free booklet, Heavens and Earth—Before and After the First Man,” we say this:

“We read, for example, in Genesis 3:1 that ‘the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made.’ While Satan is described as a serpent and as a dragon (Revelation 20:2), it appears that Eve was confronted by and spoke to a real serpent in the Genesis account. Satan gave the serpent a voice —in the same way that God gave a donkey a man’s voice to speak to the false prophet Balaam (Numbers 22:28; 2 Peter 2:16)…

“God punished the serpent, stating that it was more cursed than all cattle, and more than every beast of the field (Genesis 3:14). God pronounced punishment on a literal, physical serpent, as well as, of course, on Satan the devil who used the serpent.”

The punishment pronounced for both the serpent and Satan—the serpent of old—is interesting. In verse 14, we read: “On your belly you shall go…” When applied to Satan, God changed his appearance in the spirit world. Even if he stood upright before his temptation of Eve, that would not be the case anymore. Rather, he would be more like a dragon or a serpent, crawling on his belly. He would still walk [or move, travel, change his location] to and fro on earth, like a roaring lion, and he would also have wings with which he could fly. In fact, he will “fly” or ascend to heaven in our time to unsuccessfully try to replace God in heaven.

As the two beasts in the Book of Revelation are never described as dragons, so they are not described as serpents either, showing again the difference of descriptions between them and Satan (Further discussions in this regard can be found in our free booklet, Evil Empires and Evil People—Wild Beasts of the Bible.” ).

Another hint regarding his present appearance can be gleaned from the book of Job, where Leviathan is being described. We say this in our booklet “Heavens and Earth—Before and After the First Man”:

“The description of Leviathan in the book of Job and in other places refers to a living animal… Some have said that the description of Leviathan in the book of Job is merely a description of Satan. However, clearly an animal is described in Job 41, not a spirit being (even though some of the characteristics of Leviathan might very well, in a symbolic sense, apply to Satan).

“We might also consider additional passages outside of the book of Job that refer to Leviathan. Psalm 74:14 says that God ‘broke the HEADS of Leviathan in pieces, And gave him as food to the people inhabiting the wilderness.’ Some might want to dismiss this passage as simply mythological, claiming that no known animal existed or exists with more than one head. This claim is not necessarily accurate. Even today, sometimes animals, due to mutation or birth defects, are born with more than one head, so there is no reason to believe that the passage in Psalm 74 must be understood in a mythological, rather than a literal way.

“Psalm 104:25–26 clearly identifies Leviathan as a real, living water animal, co-existing with man: ‘… The great and wide sea, In which are innumerable teeming things, Living things both small and great. There the ships sail about; There is that Leviathan Which You have made to play there.’”

Having said this, it does not dismiss the possibility that the outward appearance of Satan is being described in the book of Job as well; and that Leviathan may be, to some extent, a physical pattern made after Satan, the spirit being. Viewed from that angle, note what God says about “Leviathan” in Job 41:18-21:

“His sneezings flash forth light, And his eyes are like the eyelids of the morning. Out of his mouth go burning lights; Sparks of fire shoot out. Smoke goes out of his nostrils, As from a boiling pot and burning rushes. His breath kindles coals, And a flame goes out of his mouth…”

The Bible tells us that Satan has the power to call down fire from heaven to kill people.

To summarize, it appears that the description of Satan as a great fiery red dragon and as the serpent of old is more than just a symbolic expression. Clearly, Satan does not look like an ordinary man, nor could he approach us as an ordinary human being. Even though the Bible is not dogmatic as to the way he looks, there are hints indicating his dreadful and terrible, and at the same time frightening appearance. It would be foolish to want to make contact with him, or to try to “see” him, but far too many are doing this in one way or another, perhaps without knowing it.

We want to conclude with this sober warning from our booklet, “Angels, Demons and the Spirit World”:

“Though many people don’t believe in the existence of Satan and demons, they are quick to dabble in the occult, being ignorant of the danger therein. Demons are called ‘familiar spirits’ because they want to familiarize themselves with man (Leviticus 19:31; 20:6, 27). Haunted houses, poltergeists, séances, communication with the dead, and contacts with ‘aliens’ are all clearly of demonic origin. Satan and demons are destructive… Sorcery, witchcraft, hypnosis, and certain meditation practices are further methods of Satan to overpower the mind of a human being and to make him or her into a helpless victim. Whenever we give ourselves ‘over’ to another influence, we have become victims of the powers of darkness.”

To visualize Satan as a devouring fiery red dragon with several heads and as a vicious poisonous serpent might perhaps show us the seriousness of our fight with Satan and his demons (Ephesians 6:11-12)—it is not a laughing matter, and must not be taken lightly.

Lead Writer: Norbert Link

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Preaching the Gospel and Feeding the Flock

compiled by Dave Harris

A new Member Letter (November 2021) has been written and mailed to our subscribers. Pastor Brian Gale addresses the false “religion” of Evolution in contrast to belief in God, and he reminds us of the wonderful understanding that God has given to us in our calling.

“A False Messiah in the Temple of God?” is the title of a new StandingWatch program, presented by Evangelist Norbert Link. Here is a summary: 

It was announced this week that a special oil was being prepared to anoint the returning Messiah from the house of David when He comes to His temple in Jerusalem. Why is this development remarkable? Will there be a physical temple prior to Christ’s return? Will He be anointed by men? Or is a great deception being prepared for the unsuspecting masses?

“Währt Ihre Leidenszeit zu lange?” is the title of this Sabbath’s new German sermon, presented by Norbert Link. “Title in English: Does Your Suffering Last TOO Long?”

“Was ist Wahrheit?” the sermonette presented last Sabbath in Germany by Johann Schell, is now posted. Title in English: “What is Truth?”

“The Minority,” the first split-sermon presented last Sabbath by Michael Link, is now posted. Here is a summary:

A new type of minority exists today where people are singled out due to the decision they make whether they want to be vaccinated or not which leads to various consequences.  As true Christians, we are familiar with what it is like to be a minority.  What is the difference between the “minorities” in the world and the “minorities” that God has chosen out of this world today?

“Does Your Suffering Last TOO Long?” the split-sermon presented last Sabbath by Norbert Link, is now posted. Here is a summary:

The Bible speaks of longsuffering and gives us many examples of God’s followers who have suffered for a long time. And today, all of us are suffering too… some for comparatively shorter, and some for much longer periods. It may appear at times that our longsuffering is just lasting TOO long. So, what does God tell us about longsuffering?

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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

Our activities and literature, including booklets, weekly updates, sermons on CD, and video and audio broadcasts, are provided free of charge. They are made possible by the tithes, offerings and contributions of Church members and others who have elected to support this Work.

While we do not solicit the general public for funds, contributions are gratefully welcomed and are tax-deductible in the U.S. and Canada.

Donations should be sent to the following addresses:

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