The Changing Face of Russia

Russia has become quite the powerhouse in the last couple of years, dominating in the Syrian war effort to protect Assad, control Iran, and improvise new relationships with Israel. The country itself has had some very impacting changes as of late.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has cracked down on sharing the gospel with unbelievers without first seeking state approval.

Russia puts lid on Christians sharing faith

“The new law will require any sharing of the Christian faith – even a casual conversation – to have prior authorization from the state,” reported Barnabas Fund, which aids persecuted Christians worldwide.

“This includes something as basic as an emailed invitation for a friend to attend church. Even in a private home, worship and prayer will only be allowed if there are no unbelievers present,” the organization said. “Churches will also be held accountable for the activities of their members. So if, for example, a church member mentions their faith in conversation with a work colleague, not only the church member but also the church itself could be punished, with individuals facing fines of up to 50,000 rubles ($770).”

Russia Today reported the crackdown was triggered by the bombing of an A-231 jetliner in Egypt last October and the terrorist attacks in Paris.

Barnabas Fund said Protestant Christians in Russia “fear that the new law will be chiefly enforced as a weapon against them and not used against the Orthodox Church, which Mr. Putin has favored in the past.”

Can we soon expect the same here in the U.S.?

Putin has complete control of the country and quite possibly through the end of this age.

Putin may run for a FOURTH presidential term in 2018 to become Russia’s longest serving leader since Stalin

  • Russian President has said that he wouldn’t exclude running again
  • Has been in direct or indirect control of the country since 2000
  • Joseph Stalin ruled for 24 years from 1929 until his death in 1953

Putin is creating a new army.

Putin’s youth army: Russian strongman sets up Soviet-style pioneer scheme for schoolchildren but faces web claim it’s echo of HITLER

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Russia now arguably has the most powerful nuclear weapon.

Russia testing unstoppable new nuclear missile which can ‘breach Nato’s shield system and blow up an area the size of FRANCE

  • The RS-28 Sarmat missile, dubbed Satan 2, will replace the SS-18 
  •  It is capable of flying at a speed of seven kilometres (4.3 miles) per second
  •  Sarmat has a range of 10,000 kilometres (6,213 miles) 
  •  The weapons are perceived as part of an increasingly aggressive Russia
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If a Sarmat missile were fired at London it would wipe out most of Britain, as well as northern France, Belgium and the Netherlands

Meanwhile, President Obama plans to remove the U.S. Nuclear Supremacy with a personal commitment to pursuing diplomacy and arms control,” deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes told the Arms Control Association on June 6. “I can promise you today that President Obama is continuing to review a number of ways he can advance the Prague agenda over the course of the next seven months. Put simply, our work is not finished on these issues.” Obama plans major nuclear policy changes in his final months

Russia tightens their relationship with Israel.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu decided at their June 7 meeting in Moscow to deepen the military ties between the Russian and Israeli armed forces, debkafilereports exclusively from is military and intelligence sources. It was a historic decision that spells the end of the IDF’s unique relationship with the US military.The head of the IDF’s military intelligence branch, Maj. Gen. Hertzi Halevi, and Mossad chief Yossi Cohen also participated in the meeting. Our sources report that Putin and Netanyahu decided that a joint exercise by the Israeli and Russian naval and air forces will be held this summer as part of the first stage of expanded ties. It will mark the first time in modern Middle East military history that Russian military planes take off from an Arab country, Syria’s Hmeymim airbase, and Russian warships sail out of their bases in Tartus and Latakia, for joint maneuvers with the Israeli air force and navy. debkafile’s military sources add that, ahead of the exercise, the joint mechanism that coordinates Russian and Israeli air flights in Syrian airspace will be expanded. According to those sources, the bilateral decision for the joint war game was tied to an agreement to allow Russian gas companies to compete for contracts to develop Israel’s Leviathan and Tamar offshore gas fields. Netanyahu said June 7 in Moscow, “Our doors are open now to all companies from all countries that have substantial experience in developing gas fields, including Russia of course.” Putin had tried repeatedly to win a foothold for Russian companies, especially energy giant Gazprom, in the development of Israel’s offshore gas fields and export industry. The Russian leader tried to convince Netanyahu by saying that the presence of the Russian navy and air force in the area would guarantee that no Arab or Muslim military force, such as those of Iran, Syria and Hizballah, would attack the gas fields

 

Perhaps the most pressing question on everyone’s mind, is Putin Gog? The bible says “Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him, And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal” Ez. 38:2,3.

Twice the Word indicates that Gog/Magog is chief prince of Meshech and Tubal ensuing a different political structure between them. The key to understanding this prophecy is to study the line of Japheth, a son of Noah. “The sons of Japheth; Gomer, and Magog, and Madai, and Javan, and Tubal, and Meshech, and Tiras.” Gen 10:2
To say as modern commentaries do, that Magog, Tubal, and Mesheh are modern countries does not fit as they are the names of ethnic groups, not countries and there is no connection in history to link Meshech to Moscow and Tubal to Tobolsk as many writers have. The ancient names for Mowscow and Tobolsk were Slavi and Wends. Russia did not even exist at the time of this prophecy.
Previously it was asked if Putin was Gog/Magog. Since it has been shown that Gog is chief of Meshech and Tubal, indicating different political groups and Meshech and Tubal are ethnic groups, probably not. It would not make sense to say Putin is chief prince of two of his own cities. Most likely, Gog/Magog is a future UN leader that launches the huge coalition army under Western leadership from the land of Turkey “And thou shalt come from thy place out of the north parts, thou, and many people with thee, all of them riding upon horses, a great company, and a mighty army” Eze 38:15
Turkey is due north of Israel and it is public knowledge that President Obama is seeking to replace UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon when his term  expires in January of 2017.
GogRussia will most likely participate in this prophecy, but not as the leader. Perhaps Putin is one of three kings at some point the Antichrist has to defeat.
I considered the horns, and, behold, there came up among them another little horn, before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots: and, behold, in this horn were eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things. Dan 7:8
And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings. Dan 7:24

Putin orders start of Russian military withdrawal from Syria

Putin orders start of Russian military withdrawal from Syria, says ‘objectives achieved’

Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu to start the withdrawal of forces from Syria starting Tuesday. Russia will however keep a military presence at the port of Tartus and at the Khmeimim airbase to observe ceasefire agreements.

Putin to Assad, Tehran: You want to carry on fighting? Count me out

A deep rift with Tehran over the continuation of the Syrian war and an irreconcilable spat with Syrian ruler Bashar Assad over his future prompted Russian President Vladimir’s shock order Monday, March 14, for the “main part” of Russian military forces to quit Syria the next morning. This is reported by debkafile’s military and intelligence sources. Moscow would retain a military presence at the naval port of Tartous and the Hmeymim airbase outside Latakia.

The Russian president did not fix a timeline for the military withdrawal – only its start. Neither did he promise to discontinue all military operations in Syria.

He did say only that “The task put before the defense ministry and Russian armed forces has on the whole been fulfilled” and he spoke of a “fundamental turnaround in the fight against international terrorism.”

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To some extent, Russia has kept a volatile country from going completely ballistic. Once the majority of the Russian military is gone, will the country resume its’ tailspin? Will Iran or Hezbollah be the instigator?

We know the destruction of Damascus (Isaiah 17) is yet to occur, and we know it is caused by the children of Israel.

In that day shall his strong cities be as a forsaken bough, and an uppermost branch, which they left because of the children of Israel: and there shall be desolation. Is. 17:9

One would think Israel would not create this type of destruction as long as a country as powerful as Russia were present, but now they leave….what’s next? Will this prophecy occur in the near future or will it commence in the seven year Tribulation? Will it be before or after Gog and Magog? Time will tell, but this author leans towards a pre-Gog & Magog occurrence. 

Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Tit 2:13

 

Ezekiel 38 (Gog and Magog) on the Horizon

Russia, the great bear, has taken over as the leading power in the Middle East. The U.S. no longer holds sway. Putin has boots on the ground and planes in the air over Syria. They also have the aid of Iranian troops in Syria in their battle against the Assad opposition and have warned the U.S to stay out of the air space.

This past Monday was the UN’s 70th general assembly for the nations of the world. Russia, absent from representation the last 10 years had some very interesting things to say by PM Putin.

It seemed, however, that far from learning from others’ mistakes, everyone just keeps repeating them, and so the export of revolutions, this time of so-called democratic ones, continues. It would suffice to look at the situation in the Middle East and North Africa, as has been mentioned by previous speakers. Certainly political and social problems in this region have been piling up for a long time, and people there wish for changes naturally.

But how did it actually turn out? Rather than bringing about reforms, an aggressive foreign interference has resulted in a brazen destruction of national institutions and the lifestyle itself. Instead of the triumph of democracy and progress, we got violence, poverty and social disaster. Nobody cares a bit about human rights, including the right to life.

I cannot help asking those who have caused the situation, do you realize now what you’ve done? But I am afraid no one is going to answer that. Indeed, policies based on self-conceit and belief in one’s exceptionality and impunity have never been abandoned.

It is now obvious that the power vacuum created in some countries of the Middle East and North Africa through the emergence of anarchy areas,  which immediately started to be filled with extremists and terrorists.

Tens of thousands of militants are fighting under the banners of the so-called Islamic State. Its ranks include former Iraqi servicemen who were thrown out into the street after the invasion of Iraq in 2003. Many recruits also come from Libya, a country whose statehood was destroyed as a result of a gross violation of the U.N. Security Council Resolution 1973. And now, the ranks of radicals are being joined by the members of the so-called moderate Syrian opposition supported by the Western countries.

First, they are armed and trained and then they defect to the so-called Islamic State. Besides, the Islamic State itself did not just come from nowhere. It was also initially forged as a tool against undesirable secular regimes.

Read Putin’s U.N. General Assembly speech

Interestingly, Putin mentions the Middle East and North Africa in his speech. Eze 38:5 says ” Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet:”. Ethiopia and Libya are located in North Africa. Persia is modern day Iran and already has sent troops to aid Russia in Syria.

‘Russia kills US-backed Syrian rebels in second day of air strikes as Iran prepares for ground offensive’

Iran was on Thursday night moving up its ground forces in Syria in preparation for an attack to reclaim rebel-held territory under the cover of Russian air strikes, according to sources close to Damascus.

Sources in Lebanon told Reuters that Iran, which is the main sponsor and tactical adviser to Hizbollah, was sending in hundreds of its own troops to reinforce them.

Putin, whether he knows it or not, will soon fulfill prophecy. The author originally thought that ISIS would be the catalyst to bring those North African countries against Israel, but now could it be that the North African countries named in Ezekiel are the thousands of men that have abandoned them to support ISIS already present in the Middle East? Here is the original post if you want to read: https://lookingforthatblessedhope.com/2014/09/01/isil-a-factor-in-gog-magog/

It is also noteworthy that none of the Middle Eastern nations surrounding modern-day Israel, such as Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Gaza, the Arab nations and Iraq are mentioned in this war. That would assume Psalms 83 war, which eliminates the threat from those countries, is now imminent. ISIS, currently the enemy of Russia may join them in the assault against Israel once they become the victor in Psalms 83 war.

Make no mistake, by the time the 7 year treaty is signed, Israel will be a world power. They do have a Supernatural God to fight for them…..

Netanyahu: Israel Must Become a World Power

‘No one makes alliances with the weak,’ says Prime Minister shortly after meeting Putin.

“We cannot solve the basic problems of the Middle East,” he said. “They are revealing themselves in their full force, and today our enemy is a double enemy: it is radical Shi’ite Islam that is led by Iran and its proxies, and the Sunni one, currently led by ISIS (Islamic State).”

“They fight each other, but they agree that we have no place in this Muslim region, as they see it. The alliances change, they rise and fall and rise again and send arms in various directions, including ours.”

There is one certain rule,” Netanyahu intoned: “No one strikes an alliance with the weak. Our true defense in the years of the state’s existence and the 65 years that the Mossad is marking now, is the strength of the state of Israel. It is this strength that we maintain.”

In the face of this changing world, Israel must be a power. Not just a regional power, but in some spheres, a world power.”

And make no mistake, Israel will be alone in their battles. But the One True God of Heaven will be with them. This 2 minute video clip is PM Netanyahu’s moment at the UN assembly. Words cannot describe the feelings here.

Incredibly the Parsha, a weekly Torah reading in Jewish synagogues around the world, beginning on October 3rd will be on Ezekiel 38:18 – 39:16!! See for yourself. TorahPortions.Org

The final Blood Moon tetrad for this century just passed on the 28th and Eze 38:18 says “And it shall come to pass at the same time when Gog shall come against the land of Israel, saith the Lord GOD, that my fury shall come up in my face.” The beginning of the Tribulation????

While this battle is probably still a year out, we clearly see it forming on the horizon. Many will say it is still many years away but, is that really the case? Let’s look at the fig tree parable. Jesus said in Mat 24:32:

Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.

Jesus is saying the generation of that day shall not pass until all these things be fulfilled. What generation would that be? The generation starting with the rebirth of Israel in 1948. Today that generation is 67 years old. How long is a generation?

The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away. Psa 90:10

So a generation is 70-80 years. If we take May of 1948 and add 80 years we get the year May of 2028 and if we subtract 2015 we get 12 years 8 months left. We must subtract the 7 year tribulation leaving us with 5 years 8 months left the Lord can tarry before His return for us. Do we really believe the state of the world can continue this long before the wrath of the Lord comes?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Middle East updates

Israel

Netanyahu vowed that no matter how dark the present situation, the terrorists “will never, ever beat us. This is the strength of an ancient people that has always prevailed and thank God, look around you, here in the mountains of Jerusalem, today we have a state of our own, flourishing and advanced, a state that is a moral beacon to the world.”

Israeli Leaders Defiant as Paris Victims Buried in Jerusalem

Almost half of British Jewish people fear they have no long-term future in Britain or Europe, while nearly one in two British people hold anti-Semitic views, a pair of surveys published on Wednesday showed.

Polls show British Jews fear for future in rising anti-Semitic climate

Iron Beam will constitute the fifth element of Israel’s integrated air defense system:

Israel Iron Beam will become the world’s first active duty combat laser in 2015

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President Francois Hollande visited the French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle in Toulon Wednesday ahead of its departure for the Gulf and Indian Ocean. There was no word on its mission in those waters, but the presidential visit on the carrier’s deck, a week after deadly Islamist terror attacks shocked France, suggested operations were afoot against Al Qaeda in Arabia (AQAP), its Yemen headquarters and/or Islamic State targets in Iraq. DEBKAfile: If the Charles de Gaulle does carry out such operations, it will be the first time that a Western nuclear warship has ever gone into action against Al Qaeda targets.

Iran

In the eyes of most Iraqis, their country’s best ally in the war against the Islamic State group is not the United States and the coalition air campaign against the militants. It’s Iran, which is credited with stopping the extremists’ march on Baghdad.

Iran eclipses US as Iraq’s ally in fight against militants

The commander of Iran’s notorious Basij forces declared Monday that the Islamic Republic’s ultimate goal is the destruction of America and Israel.

Iran General: Our Ultimate Goal Is the Destruction of America And Israel

A decline in oil exports, largely because of Western economic sanctions, has cost the Iranian economy more than $100 billion, a senior official said.

http://www.upi.com/Business_News/Energy-Resources/2015/01/12/Iran-out-billions-of-dollars-in-oil-revenue/8591421061748/

Syria and the Bomb?

Underground facility under construction near Lebanese border reportedly being protected by Nasrallah’s fighters

Assad said seeking nuclear weapons with Hezbollah aid

For years, it was thought that Israel had destroyed Syria’s nuclear weapons capability with its 2007 raid on the Kibar complex. Not so. New intelligence suggests that Bashar al-Assad is still trying to built the bomb. And he may be getting help from North Korea and Iran.

Assad’s Secret: Evidence Points to Syrian Push for Nuclear Weapons

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Senior Free Syrian Army official says suspicious Syrian, Iranian movement noted in Qusayr, where plant is said to be, enhanced by ‘unprecedented’ Hezbollah security.

Syrian rebels: Iranian officers spotted near site of reported nuclear facility

Russia

Moscow State University declares ambitious project to collect DNA samples of all of Earth’s living and extinct creatures

In Russia, a ‘Noah’s Ark’ of genetic proportions

The gigantic ‘ark’, set to be completed by 2018, will be 430 sq km in size, built at one of the university’s central campuses.

Chief of the General Staff, Gen. Valery Gerasimov stated that the strengthening of Russia’s nuclear triad will be the top priority for the Russian Armed Forces next year.

Setting the stage for World War 3, Russian leader Vladimir Putin is threatening to expand Russia’s nuclear weapon defense systems near Europe in response to efforts by NATO and the United States to extend air and anti-missile defense coverage over Europe.
Vladimir Putin Sets Stage For World War 3, Expands Russia’s Nuclear Weapons Defenses Near Europe

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ISIS

The arrival of the Dhar family in Syria last month represents a key strategic goal of the Islamic State: to build not just an army but a society. The group has vowed to create a nation ruled by Islamic sharia law, and its leaders and online recruiters have encouraged doctors, nurses, lawyers, engineers and accountants to join them in building the institutions of a new holy land.

Entire families — fathers, mothers and children — have answered that call in numbers that have surprised and alarmed analysts who study the extremist group.

Hoping to create a new society, the Islamic State recruits entire families

 

High Taliban officers in Pakistan and Afghanistan made a vow of allegiance Sunday, Jan. 12 to the Islamic State’s leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi – initiating concord among key groups of the Islamist terror movement in defiance of the values that brought millions out in a mammoth rally of Western unity against terror that day.
The Islamic State’s elite unit wiped out the forward command group of the a commando force belonging to Iran’s Al Qods Brigades early Monday, Jan. 12, killing its commander, Gen. Mehdi Norouzi,
Al-Qaeda in Yemen is becoming more powerful because it provides the troops for a Sunni community that feels under increasing threat from a Shia insurgency that has seized much of the country.
A top leader of Yemen’s al-Qaeda branch claimed Wednesday responsibility for last week’s attack on a Paris newspaper when two masked gunmen killed 12 people, including much of the weekly’s editorial staff and two police officers. Al-Qaeda in Yemen claims attack on Charlie Hebdo

Egypt

Egyptian experts tell the Guardian the ruler’s anti-democratic decrees are unmatched in rate and scope

Is it possible that 1.6 billion people [Muslims] should want to kill the rest of the world’s inhabitants—that is 7 billion—so that they themselves may live? Impossible!

I am saying these words here at Al Azhar, before this assembly of scholars and ulema—Allah Almighty be witness to your truth on Judgment Day concerning that which I’m talking about now.

All this that I am telling you, you cannot feel it if you remain trapped within this mindset. You need to step outside of yourselves to be able to observe it and reflect on it from a more enlightened perspective.

I say and repeat again that we are in need of a religious revolution. You, imams, are responsible before Allah. The entire world, I say it again, the entire world is waiting for your next move… because this umma is being torn, it is being destroyed, it is being lost—and it is being lost by our own hands.

Egypt’s Sisi: Islamic “Thinking” Is “Antagonizing the Entire World”

 

The successful roll-out so far of a new “smart card” system to distribute subsidized bread has been a major achievement for Egypt’s government, saving money while earning praise from families who no longer have to wake early to fight for loaves.

President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi appears to be succeeding where predecessors Hosni Mubarak and Mohamed Mursi both failed in the delicate task of reforming a system that has drained the state’s finances while angering the population.

Egypt’s Sisi scores early success with smart cards for bread subsidies

 

Archeologists discover Mythical Tomb of Osiris, God of the Dead, in Egypt

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