Gideon’s Chronicles
by Dene McGriff

 


Preface:

Gideon's Chronicles is about an average guy called Gideon and a small band of friends who find themselves in the middle of the Great Tribulation - Christians “left behind” and bewildered. The much hailed pre-tribulation rapture did not occur.  The U.S. has turned against Israel and Christians and all are required to take a "Mark".

This leads to their search for why they missed all the signs but unfolds into a glorious witness as they make a connection with Jews, survivalists and others who struggle against the satanic forces of the Antichrist.   Some people suspect the eternal consequences of taking the “Mark of the Beast” and begin to notice the not so subtle changes in those around them.

They slowly begin to reach out and see their calling as a part of the two witnesses during the Great Tribulation.  This may appear to be more “Left Behind” fiction, but could it be that all Christians stay behind to be a witness and testimony?  What if the pre-tribbers are wrong?

It is our belief that we are about to enter the church’s finest and most terrifying hour – to witness those very events prophesied thousands of years ago to occur at the end of the age.  The Bible talks about tribulation and trial.  In fact, everyone will have to choose who they will serve – the Antichrist or Jesus.  This can’t be faked.  You either know Him or you don’t, and I hope and pray that if you don’t you will come to know Him.

Rather than a theological work, Gideon’s Chronicle is a novel that shows that this may not be just theory, but could get down home and personal, making us question our life, our priorities and our preparation.  This is fiction, but down through the ages “fiction” has found its way to being “fact.” 

Christians have been lulled into a false sense of security when it comes to the pre-tribulation rapture.  Corrie Ten Boom, the famous death camp survivor who helped Jews during WWII said,

“There are some among us teaching there will be no tribulation, that the Christians will be able to escape all this. These are the false teachers that Jesus was warning us to expect in the latter days.  Most of them have little knowledge of what is already going on across the world. I have been in countries where the saints are already suffering terrible persecution.

"In China, the Christians were told, "Don't worry, before the tribulation comes you will be translated – raptured." Then came a terrible persecution.  Millions of Christians were tortured to death. Later I heard a Bishop from China say, sadly,

"We have failed. 
We should have made the people strong for persecution, 
rather than telling them Jesus would come first.
Tell the people how to be strong in times of persecution, 
how to stand when the tribulation comes, 
– to stand and not faint."

I feel I have a divine mandate to go and tell the people of this world that it is possible to be strong in the Lord Jesus Christ. We are in training for the tribulation, but more than sixty percent of the Body of Christ across the world has already entered into the tribulation. There is no way to escape it. We are next.”

If you are counting on the rapture to escape, please consider the consequences if you get it wrong and “stay behind”.  The Tribulation is about the “wrath of Satan” not the “wrath of God”.  It is not about hiding or escaping, but being a testimony to those who will have to choose one side or the other.  This should not cause us to fear or shirk back, but to realize we may have the glorious privilege of actually being a part of those great events that lead to the return of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  Speaking of ‘end times’ saints Revelation 12:11 says, “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.”  That is my heart’s prayer for those who dare to read on.

 Also available in Page-Flip Format.


Table of Contents
 

October 21  The Beginnings - Caught by Surprise

October 22  War in Syria

October 23  The Gog-Magog War and the Role of America

October 24  Peace at Last

October 25  The Temple Rebuilt

October 26  Early Misgivings

October 27  A Look Back

October 28  America - Good or Evil?

October 29  Is America Found in Prophecy?

October 30  “And they shall deliver you up…”

October 31   Fleeing Into the unknown 

November 1  Our New Life Begins and We Wonder . . .

November 2  The Frog in the Pot

November 3  Why Tribulation? The Two Witnesses

November 4  Our First Encounter with Other Dissenters

November 5  We Move Again

November 6  Survivalists Visit

November 7  On Changing Locations

November 8  What is Happening to People?

November 9  An Interesting Jewish Encounter

November 11  Economic Meltdown, Riots and War

November 12  We Pow Wow and Exchange Stories

November 14  We Forage for Supplies

November 15  New Additions Settle and Questions Continue

November 16  We Find Our Purpose

November 17  There’s Going to be a Wedding

November 18  Crash Course

November 21  How We Were Deceived

November 22  Life Can Turn on a Dime

November 23  Time to Move On

November 24  Thanksgiving with the Mormons

November 26  The Swap Meet

November 27  How Do We Go On?

November 28  Self Defense

November 29  Meeting With Strangers

November 30  A Dangerous Confrontation!

December 1   A Trap is Sprung!

December 2   Meetings with Family and Thor's Group

December 3   About Laura

December 4   Why Didn't We Get It?

December 11  The Family Divides

December 14  The Word Spreads

December 18   A Strategy Meeting


 

GIDEON’S CHRONICLE

October 21  The Beginnings - Caught by Surprise

I’m Gideon  I used to have a family, a wife and two kids, and a split level home in the suburbs.  I taught in the local community college.  Now I’m hiding here in the basement of a gutted old hotel. Sorry, I can’t tell you exactly where. Things have been totally spinning out of control. Military forces are combing the area looking for anyone who hasn’t been “vaccinated” yet. I’m going to be writing this just to try and make some sense out of the past few years. Nothing has gone the way we thought it would. I'm totally confused and trying to figure out what happened and what to do next. Living underground and losing everything I had including my family is not what I had in mind. . .

But I’m getting way ahead of myself. You see everything changed five days ago.  We went through a series of economic disruptions, Middle East wars and finally a period of peace as the American President kept his word after signing a defense treaty with Israel.  Let’s see.  That was three and a half years ago.  Jews and Christians alike applauded the President's accomplishment and he rose to such world fame that most of the world's masses loved and admired him.  He was such a wonderful man of peace.

Eight days ago, an assassin shot the President in the head and he died (or at least so we thought) in the streets of Jerusalem where he was visiting the newly rebuilt Jewish temple.  He was placed in a glass coffin and for three days huge crowds of people passed by mourning his passing.  After lying in state for three days, suddenly his wound was healed and he came to life.  The whole world saw it on live television. People were astounded.  They fell to their knees in awe and adoration.  He walked into the Temple and into the most Holy Place, offering sacrifice and declaring that what they were seeing was proof that he was God, the true messiah come to earth.  This is what the Bible calls "the Abomination of Desolations" and anyone who has read Daniel or Revelations knows, from that point we have three and a half more years to go before Jesus returns to set up His kingdom.  This also is called the Great Tribulation, the greatest tribulation the world has ever known.  (Matthew 24:21)

This is our situation right now. The news tells us that a pandemic broke out in China that has a kill rate of about as close to 100% as you can get and everyone must be vaccinated. In order to show that you have been vaccinated, the health officials make an indelible Mark on your hand or forehead where it can be seen by the authorities. Unless you have the Mark, you are “quarantined”.   I assume they are taken to processing centers where they are vaccinated.  Some seem to disappear and are never seen again. 

You can’t be seen in public without the Mark or you are arrested.  You can’t work, buy or sell (as it says in Revelation 13:17).  Besides, there is no money in circulation.  The “vaccination” contains some kind of chip that they use to keep track of your banking.  People get “credits”.  This system was set up because the world economy was imploding anyway.  By then everyone knew paper currency was a joke. We now have electronic currency and systems that make it impossible to counterfeit.  Credits are read using the "Mark" each person has received.  Without it, there is no buying or selling.

The excuse for the Mark is the killer virus.  They say it is just a vaccination but that is just an excuse to get people to comply. Many of us Christians have read about the “Mark of the Beast” with its economic ramifications.  But there is more to it than that.  Everyone is expected to show their allegiance to the new Messiah and when they receive their “vaccination” something spiritual and physical seems to happen to them.  They almost seem possessed.

Those of us raised in church know about the "Mark", but none of us saw it coming this way as a vaccination.  We talked about it and decided this was probably it.  So we were to avoid the “Mark” at all cost.   I may not be the sharpest tool in the shed, but having been raised in church and taught not to take a “Mark” like this so you may say I have joined the resistance. I just don’t see how this could be happening!  How did we miss it?

We are on the run from the authorities. We move from place to place and have to stay literally underground because our infrared signatures will show up on satellites, and on their scopes when helicopters are patrolling the area. They can literally see through ordinary buildings. This has only been going on for a few days and it is pretty scary. There are seven in our little group: Dana an 18 year old first year college student, Brett who was the group leader in our home fellowship and ran a small hardware store in town (he lost his family in the early days of the big “round up” as we call it – we aren’t sure what happened to them and hate to guess), etc. 

We also have Karl, a computer guru and his wife Jill (no kids), Max (who was a sheriff) and Claire his wife.  This rounds out our motley crew. 

I'll try and write a little each day starting with a little background leading up to now.

 
 

October 22  War in Syria

I have to tell you. We were blindsided. We thought events were unfolding according to the teaching we had in church. We were told that America was a “Christian” nation, founded on Bible principles.  It was the bearer of truth, justice and the light on the hill to the rest of the world. We were supporting democracy around the world, even the Middle East with the great experiment of transforming Iraq into a model democracy. We were Israel’s only real friend in the world and God was blessing us accordingly.

Things seemed to be going pretty well­­ although there were economic meltdowns, defaults and bailouts. The thorny problem continued to be Israel and what to do about the Palestinians.  In 2012 civil war broke out in Syria but the UN and NATO were completely powerless to stop it because of China and Russia's backing.  Iran was doing their best to help the al-Assad regime while Saudi Arabia was supporting the rebels.  Meanwhile al-Assad said that if it was the last thing he did, he would destroy Israel.  Never discount a cornered lion.  Israel was concerned about Iran's nuclear program so al-Assad and Hezbollah with the support of Iran attacked Israel.  Israel felt squeezed by Syria and Hezbollah to the north and Egypt in the Sinai so they used tactical nuclear weapons destroying Damascus.   Morsi, the new Egyptian President from the Islamic Brotherhood was becoming a questionable ally of Israel and more critical by the day.

The war dragged on into 2013.  Israel’s back was to the sea as missiles flew into populated areas and troops massed on the borders.  Israel had no choice but to use the nuclear option – reducing Damascus to dust in the sand.  After using nuclear weapons for the first time in nearly three-quarters of a century, world opinion turned vehemently against Israel. They had no choice but to capitulate.  The President of the United States, an erstwhile supporter of Israel was furious. He told Israel that America would defend them from now on but they had to disarm.  So Israel signed a mutual defense treaty with the U.S. 

They had no choice. The UN would have let the Arabs have their way and so would NATO. But Europe was in disarray as half of Europe was facing debt default and couldn’t decide on anything. We American Christians praised the President for his actions, for saving God’s chosen people and keeping them in the land, for imposing peace.

If it weren’t for the American President stepping in all hell would have broken loose and Israel utterly destroyed. He basically put down his foot and said, “No more fighting! There will be peace!” The conditions were the complete disarmament of Israel, a Palestinian state on the West Bank, and American troops on the ground to guarantee the peace whether the parties involved liked it or not.  We Christians thought this was a great move, more proof of our “Christian" President’s support for Israel.  In retrospect we learned that this was the “Treaty of Hell and Death” of Daniel 9:27.  The Antichrist imposed this defense treaty on his terms.  Israel had no choice even though she had always defended herself.  Now she was forced to depend on the United States, her long term friend and ally. 



October 23  The Gog-Magog War and the Role of America

Not long after signing the Defense Treaty with Israel, the Muslim world led by Iran and Turkey to the north and Egypt, Libya and others to the South mobilized for a massive invasion of Israel.  This time Israel wasn't standing alone.  American troops and the latest and best of the American arsenal were in the "land" waiting for the invasion.  The two nations vowed to fight Islamic extremism.  I won't go into detail - just to say that the two nations fought side by side and the Muslim nations didn't stand a chance against the two allies.  Israel hadn't had a chance to disarm so the two countries had quite a combined arsenal.

The American church was ecstatic! As trusting people we want to believe our leaders. We saw the war as a vindication of America as the savior nation. America is the light on the hill and stood for what was good and right.  Conventional church teaching was that the Antichrist would come out of Europe, that America was God's country and Israel's best friend. 

Our first mistake was to believe the assumption that America was not important because it wasn't mentioned in Bible prophecy. We were waiting for Europe to eclipse and replace America.  We didn't understand that America came out of Europe which it mirrored in our religion, politics, culture and language.  It never occurred to us that we were an extension of Europe, the little horn of Daniel 7 which ended up dominating the other 10 horns/nations of Europe.  All we have to do is look at the mess of the European Union to realize what a pipe dream it was to think they could rise as a single nation.

Our second mistake was to think that America was Israel's friend and ally and would never betray her.  Bible scholars believe Daniel 9:27 refers to the Antichrist making a defense treaty with Israel and none of us suspected it would be an American President.  We had been told clearly that America was not mentioned in Bible prophecy.  We were the good guys bringing "truth, justice and the American way" to the world.

Our third mistake was not understanding that "in the world we will have tribulation" (John 16:33).  We confused tribulation and persecution with the judgment of God.  We had been taught that there was no way the church was going into the Tribulation (that terrible three and a half year period of trouble and persecution) because God wouldn’t dare let His precious church suffer the judgment of God! The rapture would take us out and everyone else would be “left behind” to suffer the consequences of their unbelief! So there! Take that bad guys! We were sure these events had nothing to do with prophecy because we were still here! We didn't understand the difference between the wrath of the enemy and the wrath of God.  As events unfolded we missed it completely.  We thought all was good and we would soon be gone.

After the destruction of Damascus, the defense treaty was signed.  America was standing with Israel.  The Arab world was incensed and threatened to pile on Israel and push every man, woman and child into the sea, obliterating any memory of the Jews in the world.   The Islamic world massed troops on the northern and southern borders of Israel led principally by Iran and Turkey to the north and Egypt and Libya to the south.  Fortunately, America had troops prepositioned in Israel and Kuwait as well as huge stockpiles of weaponry left over from the Iraq wars.  Although we didn’t see it at the time, this turned out to be the much prophesied Gog-Magog War.  Jewish and American troops fought side by side.  We decimated Islamic forces:  It was such a huge battle; they say it will take seven years to clean up. We’re not sure if they used nuclear weapons or not because it wasn’t reported in the news, but rumors suggest that they did.

America was good on its word to defend Israel to the relief of evangelical Christians and Jews.  Many of us became even stronger supporters of the President for saving Israel and standing up to the whole world in the process. What more could we want? Peace in Jerusalem, a President and nation supporting Israel and on the verge of bringing peace to the whole world!  We were absolutely convinced that God would save Israel and to think he used us to do it!

After the War, the American President went on a liberation campaign around the world. Secretly, the U.S. had been developing super weapons and genetically modified soldiers who were the most effective killing machines the world has ever seen – impervious to small weapons, fearless, strong, fast and uncannily intelligent. Link these with unmanned killing machines on the land and drones in the air that took out anything in the way, and there was no stopping America’s armies.

People around the world lauded the President as a great leader and welcomed his heavy hand in return for peace and security. After so many years of turmoil, peace was welcomed. There seemed to be no arguing with this determined man.  He neutralized radical Islam.  He consolidated America’s power, access to oil and other resources, and reconfirmed that there is only one superpower in the world. No country could stand against US military might. Why would anyone even want to? We were keeping the peace (with threat of using the sword), but it seemed to be working. Go white horse!

We Christians completely missed the prophecy of Daniel 9:27 where the Antichrist makes a treaty with Israel and breaks it after three and a half years.  We did not understand that the first half of the final seven years was relatively peaceful and a time of consolidation of power by the Antichrist who was bringing "peace" to the earth.  We also expected the church to "rapture" before any of this takes place.  We were blind and caught in the ether of deception.



October 24  Peace at Last

People sighed with relief as peace settled in around the world even though it was a peace imposed by the new world leader.  This was a trade off most people were willing to make.  Get along.  Hold elections or pay the consequences as the threat of US military power hovered over a good part of the earth.

The American church was giddy with pride for their nation and the peace that had finally come in Israel.  Even the Jews, who were not too happy with the loss of control over their destiny, seemed relieved to finally have peace and not constantly looking over their shoulder for the next suicide bomber, sniper or missile.  The walls were down.  The President had shown he would protect Israel.  The masses adored, almost worshipped the man who had brought peace.

Churches declared the kingdom had finally come and Israel had been saved from certain destruction by their American savior/president.

 

October 25  The Temple Rebuilt  

Once the war was over and peace secured, Israel began to fulfill her greatest dream – to rebuild the Holy Temple in Jerusalem.  For years, Israel had been stock piling building materials and staging it for the construction of the Temple.  They began within days after the end of the Gog-Magog War.  It only took eight months to complete.  All the pieces were there.  They just had to be put in place.  Once finished, Jews and Christians alike rejoiced as the Temple was rededicated after nearly 2,000 years.  We rejoiced because the Jews were finally at home in their land again in every way.  The Temple was officially opened on December 5th, the Feast of Dedication. Jesus showed up in the Temple on that day to declare His divinity (John 10). Surely we were on the brink of a thousand year peace led by the savior of the church and Israel. 

The American church was ecstatic. America and its President had once again saved Israel. They saw this as an answer to prayer, a vindication of the church support for the administration and proof that the President was on their side. At this point in time the President said he was a Christian, went to church, sounded and acted like one.  He was a uniting force, charismatic and persuasive as can be. How foolish we were to fall for it.

Even though troops were fighting all over the world, it seemed to be for a good cause – to bring free markets, self-determination, democracy, capitalism and an American enforced “peace” to the whole world. Hard to see how it could get any better than that. We were on a roll! Israel was finally safe, the Temple was rebuilt and the church was moving on.

 
October 26  Early Misgivings

Before the resurrection of the Antichrist some began to get a little suspicious. Things seemed a little too good to be true. There were a few people who were warning us that all was not as it seemed. Some actually told us that America wasn’t what it appeared to be, that we wouldn’t escape the tribulation by rapture.  The seven year count down had, in fact, already begun when the Treaty was signed. These people were ridiculed and even turned over to the authorities for their seditious opinions. How dare they go against the pastors and teachers, this godly country and wonderful president who were supporting Israel completely!!! Couldn’t they see the good we are doing for the world?

Any talk of the Antichrist was easily dismissed. We evangelicals thought he was coming from Russia or Europe – maybe the Vatican. Please remember, we thought that as far as the Bible is concerned, America is irrelevant!  What basis was there to think differently? We thought the Antichrist would either be a non-believer, New Ager or universalist. He would never claim to be a Christian. We seemed to miss the Scriptures that said the Antichrist would appear to be a Christian and be so convincing that “even the elect would be deceived.”  Besides, he wouldn’t support Israel. Wait a minute! Daniel 9:27 says he makes a treaty with Israel and then breaks it. Isn’t that what just happened? Instead we thought he was like a savior. How could we have been so wrong?

We are confused. Everything we were taught was wrong. How could America possibly be bad? How could a President and country that supports Israel possibly be wrong? How could I still be here if these things really happened?  I’m not supposed to be here.  Right?

Well, you can see I have a lot to figure out. Gotta go now. More later. . .

 
 

October 27  A Look Back

Today I’m going to tell you about our little band of stragglers. It seems like forever, but it was just a few weeks or so ago when we were talking this over. We were having a meeting in Brett’s home with a few families from church discussing the recent happenings. Brett was the group leader. He’d been a realtor for about ten years. He did pretty well in the beginning, but after the housing crash he began helping folks who were under water. He’s a pretty traditional type - a conservative Reagan Republican. His wife, Doris, home schooled their kids – a full-time job in my opinion. Then there’s Dana who is now a college student (or at least was). She used to be our babysitter. There’s Max who was the local sheriff.  He’s helpful because he knows how to get on the police channels and follow their movements as we try and keep one step ahead of them. His wife, Claire, was a legal secretary in town. Then there’s Joe, the youth pastor. He’s fresh out of Bible School and Seminary. Rounding out the seven is Joe’s fiance, Etta. My wife, Jane, of course was there that night also but she was detained a few days later. There were a few others with us that night, but they aren’t around any more . . .

We were sitting in the family room. There was a slight chill in the air so the gas was turned on in the fireplace, giving a nice glow – but little heat. We were mulling over the recent events – the two wars in the Middle East, the treaty, the President saving Israel twice now, the rebuilding of the Temple.  Joe, the youth pastor said, “It's almost as if these events have been scripted, but whose script? Things have moved so fast. There is a rising swell of patriotism and support for the President – not just here but around the world. We appear to be entering a time of peace and prosperity.” These can't be that related to end times prophecy because we wouldn't be here.   He concluded, “It almost seems too good to be true.”

Across the room Dana frowned and looked at Joe and said, “I know that’s how it looks Joe, but I don’t have a good feeling about this. As I was praying this morning the Lord impressed me that something is terribly wrong. People who aren’t behind this new world order are being denounced as unpatriotic.  I feel that a terrible persecution is coming and we are going to have to make a choice.”

Everyone looked at her incredulously and I said, “But Dana, you’re talking like we’re in the Tribulation and we know that just can’t be. Our blessed hope is to rapture before any of this happens.” “Look around,” said Dana. “Prophecy has been fulfilled and we are still here. Next thing we know, they’ll be requiring us to take a Mark.” Max piped in. “Guys, I think she’s right. You can’t believe what they are telling us at the precinct. There is some kind of crack down coming – rumors of a deadly virus. Everyone needs to be vaccinated and if they aren’t, they will be rounded up and quarantined in special camps that are set up outside of town. They are going to put a Mark on the hand or forehead so everyone can see who has been vaccinated and who hasn’t.”

“Wait a minute,” I said. “How can this be? Guys, if we missed something as important as this, what else could we be missing? Does that mean we have just days left to come up with a plan?”

Dana said, “When I was praying this morning I had the strongest sense from the Lord that we missed it already. We are not supposed to rapture, but show the world what our faith is all about! We need to forget the things we believe so strongly and start listening to the Lord.  We are of all people most blessed, given the privilege to suffer and probably die for our Lord following the martyrs of old.”

“Dana”, I said. “If what you are saying is true, most of what we have been taught about prophecy is wrong. We aren’t going to disappear in some secret rapture, leaving everyone behind. Instead we are being left here for a reason. Okay, brothers and sisters, this could be much more serious than any of us imagined. I propose we meet here every night until we figure this out. We’ve got to throw out everything we’ve been taught for now and take a fresh look. Joe, what do you think?”

Joe responded, "In the last chapter of Daniel it says twice that the prophecies of the book should be sealed and concealed until the last days.  Maybe this wasn't revealed to Christians because the time wasn't right.  How could a 19th century Christian understand the last days when Napoleon was still terrorizing Europe?  How could anyone understand the nations involved until things began to happen?  It was only a few years ago when the Jews returned to the land.  So maybe all the confusion regarding prophecy was a result of trying to make sense of it before it could possibly be understood?  Maybe this was written for those who really need to know."

“Come to think of it, everything I was taught goes back to the Scofield Bible and 19th century scholars. How could they possibly have known how the world would look today? We can’t deny what we have seen with our own eyes these past few years. The first war when Damascus was destroyed, the treaty signed by Israel and the United States. We never even considered that could be the treaty referred to in Daniel 9:27. After all, that would make the President the Antichrist and America prophetic Babylon, the great apostate superpower of Revelation. America was supposed to fade away and disappear because we were told it wasn’t even mentioned in prophecy. But maybe it was? Maybe we missed the elephant in the room because America is prophetic Babylon! Guys, this is too much. Let’s go home and think about it.”

Suddenly George Blaino, one of the church elders, stood up and said, “You guys are all nuts. This is seditious talk and I can’t allow it. I’m going to talk to the pastor about this. We don’t have it wrong. This is God’s country and God’s president helping Israel. Nothing is wrong. We are about to enter the millennium - the greatest era of peace and prosperity the world has ever seen and you are talking like traitors to God and country. I can’t support you. You go on and have your stupid meetings but watch your back!” George stormed out of the room and slammed the door as he was leaving.

Brett, the group leader asked, “Anyone else uncomfortable with this can leave if they want.” Two more, John and Brenda Michaels, got up and left.

I remember having a strange feeling. Dana may be right. We may have it wrong and time may be running out.

With that everyone left. I felt like someone had hit me in the stomach and knocked the breath out of me. That meeting marked a turning point and nothing has been the same since.

 
 

October 28  America - Good or Evil?

As decided, our little group met again the next night – remember this was a few weeks ago when things were “normal.” Anyway, when Blaino and a couple of others accused us of being seditious and stomped out, we thought the first thing we needed to talk about was America. After all, other than the military, the most patriotic institution in America is the church. We have been taught that our nation was founded on Christian principles as refugees fled Europe to escape persecution. They found a safe place here.  America was a haven for the persecuted.

We sat around the living room that night – Brett and Doris, Max and Claire, Dana, Joe and Etta and my wife +and I. We began to talk about the recent conference by “Gatekeepers, the roots of American Exceptionalism”. Gatekeepers was an amalgamation of “Promise Keepers” and "Wall Builders.” It followed the old line of America being founded as the “light on the hill”, the ground that preserved the evangelical spirit of the Church while Europe slipped into being post-Christian. There was a historical precedent believing that America had a “manifest destiny” to lead the world. Over the past few years, America was carrying on wars of liberation throughout the Middle East, earlier in Eastern Europe and even Asia – attempts to bring them into democracy, self-determination and as full members of the global economy and new world order.

Support for the administration by churches was great because to one degree or another, every administration since Truman had supported Israel. This was interpreted by Christians as further proof of our calling to be the light on the hill. As a history teacher, I brought in a slightly different view. “Guys”, I said, “I have always wondered about this because one might just as well argue that America is as much a product of the French Enlightenment and secularism as Christianity. Many of the early founding fathers such as Jefferson, Madison and even Washington were deists, what we would call today “New Age”. Maybe Dan Brown, the author of The Da Vinci Code, had a point. The Masons left their mark on the capitol." We discussed this for a while. What if all was not as it seemed?

But on the other side, you have the people like Dave Wilkerson who pointed to the decline in morality and falling away from the faith. America was the center of the entertainment industry, pornography, drugs and a politically correct attitude that seemed to believe that anything or any lifestyle is okay. These modern day prophets concluded that America had to be destroyed – first because of its decadence and second because it wasn’t even mentioned in the Bible and needed to move out of the way so the Antichrist could emerge from Europe (which was the most common opinion at the time), Russia, the Middle East, Israel or wherever - anywhere but America!

We went on to discuss, which is it? Is America the redeemer nation that saves the world or the evil nation that is polluting the world and needs to be wiped out because it is in the prophetic way? Or, is there another explanation? We realized that we couldn’t have it both ways.

Joe chimed in, “Maybe there is another explanation. Scholars get the idea that the Antichrist comes from Europe because it is a federation of ten nations making up the old Holy Roman Empire spoken of in Daniel 7 and 8. But Daniel 7:8 and 8:9 speak of a little horn coming out of the ten and then dominating them. Isn’t that what America did? Maybe we are the upstart nation that carries the Christian mantle, and is economically and militarily the most powerful nation on earth and supporter of Israel. The only problem is that in the last days, the Antichrist will be the leader of that eleventh nation.”

That comment caused quite a commotion so Brett, our leader, said. “We have some good points here. Let’s go home and get together tomorrow night and see if we can come up with something more. I would remind you that Revelation 16-19 describes a prophetic nation called Babylon that dominates the world in the last days. Let’s check that out and see where we go from here.” With that, we all went home.



October 29  Is America Found in Prophecy?

Continuing with the story of our search, the next night, we got together in Brett’s home again. Joe introduced the concept explaining that Revelation 16 describes the destruction of a great "end times" nation prophetically known as Babylon – but certainly not Iraq, because it doesn’t fit the description. Iraq may have a lot of potential wealth but after two decades of devastating wars, it is slowly rebuilding.  It is not a Christian nation, a consumer nation nor a military superpower.   Iraq is out so what's left?  China?  India?  Europe?  None of these fit the description.

After talking for several hours, here is a short summary of our discussion. The four chapters of Revelation 16 to 19 describe the judgment of a powerful end times nation in three aspects: religious, commercial and political/military. Joe explained that chapter 17 describes an apostate (fallen) Christian nation in which the church (the woman) aligns herself with the state (the kings) and is eventually destroyed by the Beast. This prophetic Babylon had once blessed the nations with her golden cup (maybe something to the light on the hill concept) but became a source of abomination, filth and fornication. This satisfies the idea that America was used for good as the Wallbuilders claim but became evil and worthy of destruction as Wilkerson and others claim – Christian roots but corrupted. Eventually, the state turns against the church.  America fits the bill as one of the most Christian nation on earth as well as a corrupting influence (entertainment, culture, etc.).  WE ARE CHRISTIAN, seemingly the most Christian nation on earth.

Revelation 18 describes a country that dominates the world commercially and is in fact the great consumer nation that buys the world’s goods. The nations get rich trading with her and all of that trade is by sea. That could be none other than America. We buy the world’s goods whether we have money or not. They loan us money so we can buy even more. And everyone whether from Europe, Asia, Latin America or Africa must trade with us by sea. I quote, “'Alas, alas, that great city that was clothed in fine linen, purple, and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls!  For in one hour such great riches came to nothing.’ Every shipmaster, all who travel by ship, sailors, and as many as trade on the sea, stood at a distance and cried out when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, ‘What is like this great city?' They threw dust on their heads and cried out, weeping and wailing, and saying, ‘Alas, alas, that great city, in which all who had ships on the sea became rich by her wealth!'” (Revelation 18:16-19) Hard to argue with that one. The whole group agreed that even in the midst of wars and economic turmoil, we are still the great consumer nation. No other country fits that profile.  WE ARE CONSUMERS!!!

Finally, Revelation 19 says that Prophetic Babylon is the dominant military force in the world and the seat of the Antichrist and his armies. America spends more on their military than all the nations of the earth combined. China has resources but can’t begin to catch the US, not with one and a half billion mouths to feed, clothe and house. Recently we have seen that China’s great spurt to dominance fizzled as unrest began to erupt throughout the country.  WE ARE CONQUERORS!!!

One last item was discussed. The Tribulation was to begin when a nation signed a mutual defense treaty with Israel. Israel has only one friend in the world – America (thanks in large part to the Christian churches support).  It is one thing to sign a defense treaty but another to have the military clout to enforce it. This is exactly what happened just over three years ago. Israel was dragged kicking and screaming to the negotiating table by the President after their triumph over Syria, Hezbollah and Gaza. But that left her in the middle of a den of vipers more intent than ever on her destruction. This led to the Gog-Magog war I referred to earlier in this chronicle. It was a much larger conflict – nearly the whole Islamic world coming down against Israel, but this time with America firmly on her side.   WE ARE ISRAEL'S PROTECTOR!!!

So where does this leave us?  What should have been a prophetic warning was now merely history. We know since these meetings a few weeks ago that the President is the Antichrist. He broke his promise with Israel and turned on Israel and the church. He sacrificed in the rebuilt Temple and declared himself to be the God. He is now requiring everyone in the world to receive a Mark on their hand or forehead, and to pledge their allegiance to him alone.  Everyone must take the Mark. This was just too much proof for our little band so we decided to escape the tentacles of government and their “vaccine.”

It was now clear that we missed the warnings. Our pastors and teachers preached the old hackneyed doctrines based on the 19th and early 20th Century geopolitical picture. They couldn’t take their rose colored glasses off and see prophecy in a fresh way. We trusted them. We believed we would never suffer, but would rapture. We believed our nation, although not perfect, was going to bring in the Kingdom of God. We believed in our President and our country. We believed that if we blessed Israel, we would be blessed. But we didn’t listen to our God. We didn’t study for ourselves. We didn’t pay attention.  We sat in our pews and listened to the experts pontificate!

It was time to go!  Time is of the essence!

 

October 30  “And they shall deliver you up…”

Tonight we hear helicopters overhead and see search lights so the authorities are out on the hunt. We have to be very careful to keep the lights off and the noise down when this happens about every third day. They must follow a search pattern in their round up for “vaccinations” and marking the people. We wonder what really happens to people who are detained who refuse the vaccination/mark.

As I write by penlight tonight I wanted to continue with what happened a few days after the meeting when George Blaino and the others stormed out. Brett and I were called before the Pastors and Elders of the church. Here’s how it went down.

The senior pastor, Dr. Marks, began the meeting by telling us we were called here because George had reported that "We were way off base in thinking that the American government had anything but the best of intentions. We are still the savior nation bringing the good news of the gospel, peace and justice to the world. How could we possibly doubt that, especially after what America had done for Israel?” But beyond that, the pastor continued, “We must be united behind our government and its leaders. This is what God expects us to do and it is our highest calling. The government expects me, as an agent of the federal government, to report any disunity or subversive activity. After two wars in the Middle East and various smaller military actions throughout the world, our enemies are looking for weakness. Now is not the time to question the government that God has established over us.”

“Come on pastor,” I begged, “things have been happening lately that makes it evident that we missed the rapture. We signed a defense treaty with Israel. Just because we can’t imagine that America could be evil or the President could be the Antichrist, what other explanation do we have? People have been disappearing before our eyes. Sure the world is supporting the President and hailing him as the great leader who is bringing peace and order to this chaotic world . . . but isn’t that what the Antichrist would do? Wouldn’t he deceive the whole world and even the elect?”

“How dare you even think this,” shouted the red faced Dr. Marks! “It should be obvious to all that if this were as you say, we would be raptured and not sitting here talking to one another. So Gideon, you are wrong, wrong, wrong! Unless you publicly repent to us right now, we will have no choice but to report you to Homeland Security. It is my solemn duty and I cannot shirk it. As a Christian and as a leader of a non-profit Church, I am bound to support God and country. Does anyone else have any comments?”

A few of the elders, including George Blaino, piped in, “Gideon, this is a sad day when you no longer respect the authority of God, your country and the church. Unless you repent right now, you will face the consequences of your willful, devilish disobedience. Don’t say we didn’t warn you. Our President is a great man. He has done great things. We the church stand behind our nation and its leaders. We are on the threshold of the greatness this nation was destined for. Fortunately, there aren’t many like you, Brett, and your ragtag home meeting. You leave us with no choice.”

With that, we were asked to leave as they further deliberated our fate. This happened just days before it all came down. That evening, we decided we had better "get out of Dodge" if we were to survive and have any chance whatsoever to warn others of this great deception. Our home church and many of our best friends were about to turn us over to what had become the most effective police state since Nazi Germany. Ever since 9/11, Homeland Security had been spreading fear and increasing surveillance over every aspect of our lives – not just in the airports but with cameras on every street corner and most shops tied into a super computer with nearly instant facial recognition. Our smart-phones, lap-tops, I-pads, Droids and everything in between were all GPS equipped and allowed us to be tracked anywhere within a few feet. Some people even allowed tracking devices like you would use on a pet to be placed in their children or on an elderly person for “health or safety” reasons. Drivers' licenses and most credit cards had RFID chips which could be read by sensors that were found in almost any public location and who knows where else.

We realized that if we were to go off the grid, it would be much easier said than done. Even satellites can look down and recognize faces or see through ceilings and walls. There is nowhere to run and nowhere to hide. We are going to have to find people to help us. Our only concern at this point was to stand up against this Beast and warn people. It is becoming evident that we had completely missed the signs, as had many others. Rumors are already starting to spread about the deadly virus that could wipe out the population and the requirement to have a visible Mark to prove they were vaccinated. At least we are hopefully smart enough to recognize this for what it is.

We made plans to buy supplies, proper clothes, get as much cash in coin as we possibly could, certain food stuffs.  We didn't have much time.  We suspected that soon our bank accounts and credit cards would be frozen since everything is moving toward electronic currency.

So that was our “D-Day”. It was the day we suddenly realized we had to do something and fast. Needless to say our meeting that night was interesting. Talk about shock and awe! We looked around Brett’s living room at one another stunned, not knowing what to say. That night there were eight of us including my wife.

“Okay,” said Brett, “we are out of time. We can’t be seen rolling suit cases along the street. Each person has to ditch all electronics except Max who can monitor police channels. We’ll have to rely on Internet cafes for brief Internet access now and then and even if we set up new emails, user names, nothing is safe so we will have to be very careful. Each person should bring one over the shoulder bag and one backpack with whatever you would need for the rest of your life. Before we leave, we should try and change our appearance – hair style and color, get some hoodie sweatshirts and good water proof shoes. That’s about it. We should meet back here tomorrow and just leave everything else behind. Gideon is the only one with school age kids so that will make it fairly easy if the rest of us pitch in.” With that, we went our separate ways not knowing how quickly the pastor would act in his role as “agent” for the state. More tomorrow. . .

 
October 31 Fleeing Into the unknown

This ghoulish Halloween night I continue the story of our exodus from the world we left behind.  There are no children "trick or treating" tonight.  As I mentioned, our "D-Day" happened just the day after our meeting with the Church elders.  Then the Antichrist who was lying in state in a glass coffin in the rebuilt Temple suddenly rose up.  Talk about shock and awe - the whole world saw it happen.  He got up and walked right into the Temple.  One of his followers brought in a huge pig which he took onto the altar and sacrificed.  As he came out of the Temple he addressed the world saying his resurrection was proof that he was God, the true Messiah all had been waiting for.  Cheers could be heard around the world as they beheld the miracle!

There was no more doubt.  That was the "Abomination of Desolations" referred to by the Old and New Testament.  It was either go underground or be detained. We began to see people disappear. We just hoped we got out in time. We thought we would make it because in the beginning they still went through the formality of arrest warrants and the like. They don’t now. If you don’t have the Mark showing you have been vaccinated you are picked up and “disappeared”. We are told that some people are eliminated because they refuse the vaccination and will spread the infection. However, none of the people we know that were picked up seemed to be sick. We suspect there is a lot more to this than meets the eye. There is a rumor that you also have to take an oath of allegiance to the new world leader/liberator/messiah/President in order to be vaccinated and receive the Mark. 

Anyway, back to our escape. All we knew is that there may be some who help us.  But everyone would have to eventually take sides. We just didn’t appreciate quite how terminal and traumatic it would be. For the last time we met at Brett’s home.  Each of us carried a small backpack or duffle with all of our belongings in it along with some gold and silver coins and anything else we thought we might be able to barter with. We brought some food. We talked about where we might go. There were many abandoned houses that people had just left because they had no job and couldn’t afford the payments.  Many had been cleared by bands of looters during the “black out”.  Houses were risky because of the searches that were being carried out and the ceiling and walls were too thin to avoid surveillance.  Infrared can penetrate them.

We settled on an old area of abandoned warehouses where we could hide within a large building that would give some cover. That first night we carried what we could in the way of food.  We drove to the general area but didn’t want to chance leaving a vehicle that could be connected to any of us so we walked quite a ways once we got to the warehouse area. We left the keys in the vehicles, knowing someone would come along and help themselves.  This was not a populated area. There were no neighborhoods or businesses around. The real hunt hadn't begun yet. There was an informal round up of dissidents who were turned in by the churches, which had become the eyes and ears of the government.

We walked in the dark without the aid of flashlights. We sensed there was something very final about our choice. There was no turning back, no way of knowing what was in store for us, just the gut level belief that God knew what He was doing. It may have been safe to stay in our homes, but something inside told us that would be an even bigger mistake.  We had already made too many missteps by not paying attention to the signs.  Off we went.

We tried to make beds out of cardboard and we found tarps, cloth and packing material lying around. We found a spot in the cool damp warehouse and curled up for the night. 

 

November 1  Our New Life Begins and We Wonder . . .

Day 1 of our new life, we woke up with the light.  All was quiet so we decided we would just hang out and rest for a while and continue our discussion. We knew about the treaty with Israel, but none of us put two and two together with prophecy. The President had been spending quite a bit of time in Israel since the wars and the rebuilding of the Temple, but for the first three and a half years, everything seemed fine.  It never occurred to us that America would have anything to do with the Antichrist or Israel.  If anything, we were surprised that America was still around and strong economically and militarily.  We had been clearly told that since America was not found in prophecy, it would either be destroyed or fade away into oblivion. The other thing we clearly missed was the rapture. We had been steeped in the idea that the church would never suffer the wrath of God and would escape before the Tribulation.

The discussion began when Joe began reviewing scripture, “Most of us have been taught that there would be a pre-tribulation rapture. We know we were wrong because events have overtaken us. So I began taking a second look. A straight forward reading of Matthew 24 clearly gives the order of events – persecution, the abomination of desolation at the midpoint of the tribulation (which we just saw), followed by intense persecution and ending with the return of the Lord and the saints (dead and alive) meeting Him in the air which is referred to as the rapture. It seemed pretty straight forward reading it this time. Why the idea of a secret pre-trib rapture? I think the main justification for it was the idea that the church shouldn’t suffer the wrath of God.  As I began to reread Revelation, I realized that indeed, the bowls of the wrath of God are not poured out until after the return of Christ and the rapture. Up to this time, persecution was coming from the apostate church, Satan and the world – what else is new? In this world, Jesus said we would experience persecution just as He did. Frankly, the rapture doctrine was beginning to look more like deception from the apostate church. If we believed we were going to escape, why prepare, why worry? Just look where this teaching got us.”

“This is probably the greatest deception for Christians,” I said. “And now that I think about it, it is counter to the entire history of the church. It was always considered the greatest privilege to suffer and die for Christ as He did for us. Now we are so invested in the things of this life, we can’t imagine how anyone could feel that way. The pre-tribulation rapture doctrine was tailor made for the lukewarm Laodicean Church, which is what we are. We were lulled to sleep in our complacency and this was reinforced by our church leaders.” 

Dana had been sitting on a crate taking this all in. “Well we sure weren’t paying attention. It’s not that we weren’t warned. A good part of the Bible deals with prophecy in the last days, so it is probably important to see if there is anything else we may have missed. Like, if we are supposed to be here, what is the reason? Why are we here?” 

More tomorrow . . .

 

November 2  The Frog in the Pot

Today I’m going to reflect on what happened to us the past three and a half years. Not long ago things were pretty normal. There was peace in the Middle East and it looked like Israel was okay since they signed the Defense Treaty with the American president. The economy had stabilized and was beginning to recover.  Life sort of returned to normal.

Meanwhile, I got up and went to work every morning. My wife drove the kids to school, soccer practice on Tuesday and Thursday, games every Saturday, church on Sunday. A little TV – those NCIS reruns and a little Hawaii 5-0. Life was okay. We struggled like everyone to pay our bills, keep our credit cards paid off. Unemployment was still higher than normal, but I felt lucky that I still had a job although you know how it is for teachers – they pay less and expect more every year.

After the treaty with Israel was signed and the big war in the Middle East, security became all important here at home.  We were told that there would surely be retaliation by terrorists on American soil.  The free flow of network news and information became a thing of the past.  We suspected that some of our police actions around the world were more than that, but news coverage was censored. It was getting hard to tell what was really happening.  Cell phone use was restricted. No more networking, tweeting or texting so there was no way to mobilize crowds for demonstrations. The teenagers went crazy for a while. But we were told that the continued threat of terrorism made it too easy for them to organize and coordinate. The whole cell phone world was basically taken over.

We began to see more censorship on the Internet as well. The government had developed super computers to such an extent that everything we said was scrutinized and suspected dissidents were called in for questioning. In recent years the “cyber cops” stepped up surveillance of the Internet and cell phones. After the Middle East blew up and it was full on war between us and radical Islam, it was a game changer. Just like most people willingly went along with the ridiculous airport screening (because they felt safer), people became accustomed to greater controls on their lives for the sake of safety.

Along came video surveillance – cameras everywhere, sensors that could map your every move (as long as you had a cell phone) plus RFID chips in your Driver’s License and most credit cards. They knew when you entered and left any building. Again, this was for our “protection”, so people just went along with it.

Once war broke out, it was politically incorrect to talk about the First Amendment and freedom of the press. Terrorists had reportedly been captured in major cities with portable nuclear devices and biological weapons. People were terrified so no one raised a fuss. And if they did, someone had a talk with them. They never uttered a negative word again or else they were “processed”.

At the same time, laws against “sedition” were easily passed. There was no such thing as “Wikileaks” anymore. Media is tightly controlled.  This change happened gradually just like the frog in the pot of water and rather than complain, people accepted it. The fear factor was huge and the consequences were beyond what anyone was willing to pay.

As the fear of terrorism and instability grew it became easy to impose order. We went from life as normal to a police state. There were other disruptions as well. I’ll never forget what happened in December of 2012. Some say several electromagnetic pulse devices took out satellites, power grids and most things that ran on transistors. Others say it was caused by solar flares.  Luckily it wasn’t a total wipe out, but it disrupted life as we know it for several months before they were able to reestablish power and order. Stores were emptied within hours. Anarchy ravaged the cities as looting was rampant, burning, killing and pillaging. Rural areas fared a little better as long as roving gangs from the cities didn’t attack.

If it weren’t for a harsh response by the military, it could have been much worse.  The average American welcomed troops with open arms.  Millions of terrorist sympathizers (remember “Occupy Wall Street?”) were rounded up and put into camps that had been staged strategically around the country years ago. Amazingly the authorities were prepared.  Many people were never seen again. But the violent and swift reaction of the government was the answer to the horror of chaos so no one complained.

We realized we lived in a very fragile society and only a strong central government was capable of keeping the peace and protecting citizens from "threats."  This was a game changer.

Hard core evangelicals supported the government because they believed it was put there by God to be respected and obeyed. These were unusual circumstances and called for unusual measures. Once the treaty was signed to protect and defend Israel, Christians were completely behind the government because this was one of their “prophetic imperatives”. Who knew that the government would soon turn against them all?

Upon reflection, it is interesting to see how easily we were manipulated by the government and even our churches and leaders. What part of “deception” didn’t we understand? Did we expect some really bad guy to stand up and say, “I’m the Antichrist. I’m taking over and you will worship me and I will run your lives?” No, we elected a guy who said he was a “Christian”, who said he would protect us and Israel. What more did we want? And we all bought it hook line and sinker!


November 3  Why Tribulation? The Two Witnesses

There’s such a thing as the “normalcy bias” that causes smart people to underestimate the prospect of calamity. By the end of 1935, a hundred thousand Jews left Germany but millions remained. They had grown complacent having lived there for so long, being so ensconced in the culture, many felt more German than Jewish. As we know, that “normalcy bias” had deadly results.

It was the same way with us.  We thought life would go on like it always did.  Our kids would play soccer, go to college, get jobs, get married and have kids.  We’d sit by the fire and watch reruns or Netflix, play the Wii, mow our lawns, clean the pools, build up our 401ks.  In short, nothing could interrupt our good life except the rapture, and how cool would that be?

Our little group began to consider not just what had happened but why. We were told that there was no way Christians would go through the Tribulation. God wouldn’t and couldn’t allow His people to suffer. We were told our great hope was that we would rapture, and the Jewish people would return to center stage and wrap things up until Messiah returned (Jews weren’t too keen on that idea).  It never occurred to us that this went against a history of two thousand years of suffering and persecution of Christians.

Obviously, we blew it because we know of no one who was caught up in the clouds. Not only that, there was no “wrath of God” coming down on us. We may suffer from the wrath of Satan, the Antichrist and those devoted followers who took the “Mark of the Beast”. Whoever received that Mark certainly went through a change and became a totally devoted supporter of the Beast system and an enemy of those of us who hadn't been "Marked".

Instead of leaving the Jews holding the bag, we ran into small groups of Jews who were also avoiding the Mark for the same reasons we were. It was Dana who pointed out the “two witnesses” in Revelation 11 and proposed to us the idea that these two witnesses – two olive trees and two lampstands referred to God’s people on the earth (Jews) and those in the heavenlies (Christians). Romans 11 and other places in the Old Testament referred to the nation of Israel as "olive trees."  And Revelation 2 and 3 are the famous letters to the seven churches in Asia, also called the seven "lampstands." She pointed out that the theme of these two people groups ran through the whole Book – Revelation 7 referring to a group of 144,000 Jews from the twelve tribes and Revelation 14 referring to 144,000 believers who had robes washed in the blood of the Lamb, the Jews sang the song of Moses and Christians sang the song of the Lamb - always two groups of people.  These two peoples represented God's testimony and presence on the earth.

It is not about the rapture.  It is not about our escape.  It is not about our comfort.  It is all about God's testimony.  It is about a people He has been shepherding for thousands of years, people to whom he gave a Promised Land, people who brought us the line of the Messiah, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world and restores us to a relationship with Him.  One group was His stiff necked people (Jews).  The other group was an unlovely, unworthy people who don't deserve anything but receive the unmerited favor of His life (Christians).  The promise has always been that we are made in God's image.  We are His Temple - not a building made of stone.  These two groups represent His dealings with man - two peoples, heavenly and earthly.   His glory is that these people will lay down their lives for Him rather than follow his arch enemy Satan.

The question is the same as the one posed by Job.  Will we curse or bless Him when times get rough?  Will we realize we are living here on this glob of dirt for a short time only to spend eternity with our God and Creator and Savior?  Will we be lukewarm, neither hot nor cold like the Church in Laodicea (Revelation 3) or will we be consumed with His love, power and presence and tell the world about it? 

Wow! What an instant revelation this was to us all. It suddenly became clear. We had been looking for two supermen like Moses and Elijah, but instead there were two corporate witnesses. Somehow, God had called the two groups to be a testimony of what God had done with His people. Surely He had been faithful to the Jews because after thousands of years they were still here, and even more, they returned to their land of promise – Israel. All the nations raged against that tiny nation and wanted to push it into the sea. Now, even the President of the United States had betrayed them, breaking the defense treaty he had made with them after three and a half years – just as predicted in the book of Daniel.

We read the letters to the seven churches in Revelation 2 and 3 and realized that even though His people have been less than perfect, there were still people who overcame in spite of the institution. The institution of the church (the shell) was a typical manmade organization but within it there were a few believers who understood that it had nothing to do with religion but having a relationship with God. Being a Christian had nothing to do with the buildings, the forms, doctrines and meetings but consisted of a “called out” people who had received the Messiah into their hearts and drew them together as a tiny community.

Those who went through the motions of going to church and accepted everything they were told were caught up in the apostate or fallen church which consisted of well meaning but deceived Christians. Those who had any sense of the Lord’s presence in their lives, and an open and inquiring mind took the time to search the Scriptures for themselves to determine their direction. These were the ones that were literally driven outside the camp and into hiding like us. By now the “Beast people” had taken over the churches and everyone was forced to be vaccinated and “take the Mark”.

Now as we move about in our little underground world, we discover other groups such as ours, some Christians, some Jews and some just confused people who don’t trust the government. Oh, and by the way, we don’t know of a single person who ever got sick or died from the super flu. It is clear that the Antichrist wants to bring every man, woman and child under his control.

So as we consider these things, it becomes clear why we are still here. We are here to reach out to whoever will listen and help one another. There are many people who are really open and looking for answers.  Now we see how intertwined our destiny is with the Jews. We realize we may not make it all the way to the end, but again, our dear sister Dana reminded us of Revelation 12:11. “They overcame by the blood of the Lamb, by the word of their testimony and loved not their lives even unto death.” We are scared but know that we have a relationship with Jesus and His Holy Spirit dwells in us and will give us the words and the courage none of us have naturally. Shame on us for wanting to escape when we can witness the greatest events in the history of man leading up to the return of our Messiah, Jesus Christ. Our prayer is that we will live now in the light of eternity, not the fleeting months of danger and persecution ahead.

 
November 4  Our First Encounter with Other Dissenters

Today we met a group of dissidents.  It was a mixed group – a few Christians like us who sensed something wrong, a few Jews who were not too happy about taking a “Mark” like their ancestors did under Hitler and a few libertarians and survivalists who didn’t trust the government as far as they could throw it.  They had also gotten out just in time.  The fact that the President actually went into the Temple and declared himself to be God blew their minds.  For the most part, these were not religious people.

When we began to explain how this time period had been laid out in some detail in the Bible in many different places it surprised them greatly.  We explained that this was all part of a struggle between good and evil, God and Satan.  Both wanted our allegiance.  We were being given a choice as to which we will serve.  This seemed to register well with most of them.

As a whole, they were confused, but our explanation of events helped make sense of it.  They just knew they needed to get away and hide as best they could.  They were making their way out of town to rural areas where they could hopefully grow their own food.  We offered to let them stay with us for the night.  We planned to move on the next day.  They planned on resting a day before moving on.

We agreed to stay in touch.

November 5  We Move Again

We have been living in this old warehouse, but it is pretty spartan and isolated.  Since no one was around, we would look very suspicious if seen wandering around the area.  We decided to look for a new place to stay that would be more secure.  We moved to an abandoned hospital where we are now hunkered down in the subbasement.  It is a good location because no one can see or hear us. The floor above us is lead lined because nuclear medicine, radiology and imaging used to be down here so we can’t be seen by any remote surveillance (satellite, helicopter, etc.)  The problem is, it may be obvious and a place they want to check out regularly so we're not sure how long we will stay

Some people stored food down here. It’s quiet right now. We tapped into an old electrical box so I can at least write tonight. The round up continues. It is being announced on television that the inoculations are working and that the pandemic is being controlled because of the diligent cooperation of citizens. Strange things seem to be happening to those who received the vaccine. Word is it introduced some kind of animal DNA which not only cures the disease but has other mysterious effects.  People who have taken the "Mark" seem to be changing in inexplicable ways – more on this later.

 
November 6  Survivalists Visit

Imagine how we freaked out when we heard voices from the floor above.  They didn’t sound or act military so we just waited to see who it was.  A group of eight came through the door sweeping their guns ahead of them, but when they saw we were civilians we all relaxed.  They were a scary bunch to behold, wearing camouflaged fatigues, kevlar vests and bearing automatic and semiautomatic rifles (some with infrared sights on them), side arms in their belts, military looking back packs with sleeping bags and mats.  They looked ready for battle. 

After a brief introduction of the two groups, we sat down to chat.  The leader of the group, Thor, explained where they came from.  Prior to the turning point which we defined as the requirement to get the “Mark”, they were a loosely affiliated group of survivalists/libertarians who didn’t trust the government and were getting more and more upset as it became more controlling.  They didn’t believe in vaccines and thought they were part of a government conspiracy to infect the population so the weak would die off.  They didn’t allow their kids to be vaccinated.  When it began to be spread across the news that everyone would have to be vaccinated because of a deadly super virus, they said no way and set their plan in motion to start an underground war against the government.

Thor told us that they had been preparing for this day for years and had stored up food, supplies and weapons in various locations in the surrounding area.  They had a mountain retreat that was a self-sufficient community.  Part of their group was here in the city. He told us that one of the places they stored supplies was right here in the old hospital.  They were linked with other groups of people, but wanted to keep them apart in case one of them was compromised.

They took one look around at our ragtag little group and saw no weapons and few supplies.  What on earth were we doing?  I explained that we didn’t have much time to get ready because we just figured out what was happening.  We left with little preparation and no idea how we would survive.  Thor offered to help in any way he could.

Thor and his group were not particularly religious, but they had their suspicions.  We explained that many of the things that had happened were specifically prophesied in the Bible – the wars in the Middle East, the treaty with Israel, the betrayal of Israel and the churches.  But we knew something really big was up when the "dead" American President rose up and went into the newly rebuilt Jewish Temple and declared that he was the Messiah returning to bring peace. After his “resurrection”, he announced the vaccination/Mark program.

We began to compare notes and agreed that something happened to people as soon as they took the Mark/vaccine.  People who weren’t sure about the New World Leader all of the sudden became devoted followers, worshipping him and doing whatever they were commanded by the Leader’s lieutenants.  They eagerly denounced anyone who refused to take the Mark. I recalled from history how people who were totally opposed to Hitler would attend one of his rallies and leave as devoted followers.

We explained the clear prophetic signs we missed and the prophetic time-table.  We explained that the next three and a half years were going to get pretty tough, but at the end the real Messiah would appear and defeat the Antichrist and his armies.

Meanwhile, we were here to be messengers and tell anyone who would listen about the real Messiah, what He had done for them and how we could each have a life changing relationship with God.  Our choice was becoming clear.   Either we were on God or Satan’s side in this battle.  Even if we didn’t make it, we could be sure we will spend eternity with Him.  Eventually, this is a choice we will all have to make and to not choose is a choice.  We asked if they would like to side with the real Messiah and follow Him.  Two said they would, so we bowed our heads and prayed and they asked the Lord to come into their lives and be their Lord.  Another, Laura, said she had asked Jesus into her heart years ago but had strayed and would like to rededicate her life to him.  She also wondered if she could stay with our group so she could renew her walk as a Christian and to help us in survival techniques.  Laura became the eighth member of our little band.  This was okay with Thor.  We just encouraged the others to think about what we shared.

They hung out until the next evening, giving us lots of tips on survival, places we could go to, people we could trust and ways to find supplies when we needed them.   Although not all believers, we still felt an incredible bond as they went on their way.  Thor told us he would keep in touch and direct others to us so they could hear our story. He was really impressed but maybe a little too proud to take the leap of faith at the time.  I'm sure we’ll see him again.  Laura knows how to stay in touch.  We felt it was time for us to move on as well, so we gave them a couple of hours head start and then packed our stuff and headed on out.  The journey continues to our next encounter.

 

November 7  On Changing Locations

Thor and his band left this morning and strongly suggested we do the same. We're new to this game. According to him, the old hospital is just too obvious of a place to hide and will therefore be checked out by ground troops on a regular basis. He gave us tarps that are made out of some special military issue material that reflect and don't allow them to see infrared heat signatures. This opens up more possibilities as to where we can stay. Thor gave us survival suggestions. Since the wars began three and a half years ago, and the economic and housing crisis, entire areas of the city were literally abandoned - schools, businesses, strip malls, neighborhoods. Recently since the "round ups" began a few weeks ago, thousands more have disappeared leaving behind not just houses, but food, clothing and other supplies. Talk about "left behind" - we never thought it would be like this.

Fortunately, it is a rainy, misty day. It gives us an excuse to put on ponchos and hoods so we can carry our supplies out of sight, not that we are going to run into many people. We decide to go to an abandoned school and stop along the way for supplies in some of the empty houses. The sky is grey with a heavy mist falling like a Seattle rain. This is one of those areas the gangs cleared out several years ago after the 2012/13 black out. No one bothered to move back. Joe and Brett followed the new girl, Laura, since her group had scoped out most areas of town over the past few years. Laura told us to go in pairs, act normally and try not to attract any attention to ourselves - just pretend we were out for a walk.  We saw a few people wondering around.  We just ducked out of sight and waited for them to pass.  We went in and out of a few abandoned houses and scrounged for supplies.  It is bizarre walking through a neighborhood that was a thriving suburb but is now deserted.  A third of the houses were burned down and the rest vandalized leaving little of value. We walked on through this no man's land until we come to the old middle school. 

It didn’t look like anyone had been there recently.  There are some inside rooms that have no outside windows that were used for audio visual and performing arts. It gives a certain sense of privacy and no light can be seen from the outside. No one has been here for awhile. We looked around the room and just saw trash left behind by people passing through. Although there is no electricity, the water is still running so there is a place to wash. Laura told us we aren’t far from an area with recently abandoned homes that still have food and supplies.  We found a large AV room upstairs in the middle of the building that had no windows.  We draped our tarps across the ceiling and finally sat down, emotionally and physically exhausted after a day of wandering around in the open.  It was hard to imagine going on like this for three more years!

 

November 8 What is Happening to People?

Laura had an interesting take on what had happened. "Do you remember the movie, "Invasion of the Body Snatchers"? Well, that is the way it seems. People who have taken the "Mark" are not alert and focused.  They seem to just stare straight ahead.  Each person does an assigned task.  There is no small talk, just people busy taking orders from some unseen entity. They seem to be able to communicate at a psychic level.  If they run into a person who doesn't have a "Mark" they don't stand around them and screech like they did in the movie, but they do send two or three people to collect that person. A call is made and a "Health Department" vehicle with people dressed in white protective clothing comes along and drives them away to one of the “vaccination centers”. Word is, they are given a choice to be vaccinated and "Marked," or they are taken to one of the detention centers. Once a person is "vaccinated" it's as if they become a part of the "hive".  If they were unemployed before, the "hive" uses them as “outreach workers” for the health department.  It is odd that these folks don't need protective clothing in their jobs.  They probably wear it in public to keep up the myth of a pandemic." 

There are roving groups of resistance - some friendly and some not so friendly, and then there were the minions of those who have taken the "Mark of the Beast". We started calling them the "Beast people" because something was happening to their humanity. It appeared to be slipping away.  They showed no emotion other than total dedication to their new leader.

Brett responded, “Laura, you have confirmed our suspicions.  Something is happening to people.  It is almost as if they are possessed by something when they are vaccinated/Marked.  This may be possession by an evil spirit which they invite in when they are "Marked".  This is a further desecration of the human Temple.

"We are happy you decided to join us.  We can certainly use your experience and advice.   I was pleased to see how open your group was to our explanation of events, including the prophetic elements." Laura jumped in, "Yes, we talk about this extensively, but no one was able to explain it like you did.  You gave me a new meaning to life beyond just surviving. It makes sense. This is God's plan and even though we may suffer for a little while, we are close to the most exciting event in the history of the world, the return of Jesus.  I'm just glad I met you all.  I haven't been walking with the Lord the past few years and miss that so much."

Dana said, "We're delighted you joined our little group.  I think you will find it exciting.  There is a timeline and plan. We may have trials in this world but God will protect us."

"Dana, that is fantastic", I said. "I think we can see why we are here. There are plenty of people we will run into who are open to hear what we have to say. After all, these recent events were prophesied to happen thousands of years ago and we are right on schedule. We can sense the presence and power of the Lord with us even now. Let's take some time to praise and thank Him." We reached out to Him with our hearts and began to praise and thank Him for the wonderful opportunity to be a little testimony to His love, His plan and His faithfulness to us.

We may or may not make it to the end, but we no longer have a stake in this world. We have already lost everything - the normalcy of our lives, our homes, cars, TVs, furniture and all the things we worked so hard to get, our jobs and our titles, our degrees and our resumes. What difference does it make now? What counts is that we are called by God to stand and testify to a world that is about to end, that a relationship with Him is real here and now and for eternity which is a long, long time (that's an understatement). We are so privileged to witness events that were revealed thousands of years ago to the prophets such as Daniel, Isaiah and Zechariah. They are happening! And even though it means persecution and loss, His presence and life is so real, our bond with one another is so vital, nothing in the world can compare.  What a contrast to the “Beast people” in the hive!!!
 
 

November 9  An Interesting Jewish Encounter

Our first night in the school was uneventful – pretty quiet outside – no patrols or helicopters.  I wish we were better prepared.  We should have known that once there was war in the Middle East followed by a defense treaty with Israel, that it marked the beginning of the end.  The time to get ready was three and a half years ago and we did nothing.   

About noon today, we heard some people enter the school.  They sounded like stragglers instead of a patrol.  Max, the ex-sheriff went downstairs to check it out.  Max had his degree in Criminal Justice and was with the Sheriff's Department for about twenty years.  He had been the head of the criminal investigation unit.  He began to question as he saw the increasing brutalization of the department, more of an “us versus them” mentality.  In a way, it is understandable.  Anyone could be terrorist and potentially subversive.  After years of the “Occupy Wall Street” and the increasing radicalization of the disenfranchised poor, the police became the targets of not only rocks but handguns, Uzzies and grenades.  Understandably they became less trusting of the people they were hired to protect. 

As Max opened the door to the lower hall, he had his hand on the gun in the small of his back. When he saw the group, he realized they were civilians.  He brought them upstairs to meet the rest of us.  Avi, the leader of the group, was the Cantor of a local Synagogue.  He introduced us to his wife Helen, Curt and his wife Kathy, Bill and Marta.  Avi said they were wandering around trying to figure out what on earth had happened and what they should do.

We pooled our resources and made a respectable lunch for all to share.  It is always interesting to find out what other people’s “story” was.  We were anxious to hear theirs.   Brett said, “Well it looks like we have a lot in common.  How did you happen to go rogue?”  Avi said, “As you can see, I’m the old guy of our little group.  I was the Cantor of Beth Shalom and have been watching events in Israel with great interest.  Ten years ago I immigrated to Israel and lived there for four years.  Having been raised by a Cantor, I was expected to become one.  I enjoyed being in Israel, but it was hard to imagine living under the constant threat of violence and possible annihilation.  I had an opportunity to come back to the states and take over my father’s position in the Synagogue so I did. 

“Once my wife and I returned we began to share with a few in our congregation the feeling that world changing events were about to take place in Israel.  We wanted peace, but it was clear the Islamic community didn’t share our aspiration.  Our hopes rose during the “Arab Spring” with the anticipation that democracy would catch on in the Middle East.  The demonstrators were not able to overcome the money and organization of the Islamic Brotherhood and other radical Islamic organizations.  They took over in Turkey, Egypt, Syria, Yemen, Libya and other countries with the tacit support of the military.  Iran was spreading its influence throughout the region.  Things weren’t looking good for Israel.  Her destruction was the only thing the Shia and Sunnis could agree on.

“The Holocaust is ancient history to most Jews these days, but my grandfather lived through it in Germany and my father never let me forget.  The reality of that fear is only felt by those who live in Israel.  Every concession is met with more and more demands, but we know that Islam will never be content until we no longer exist.  Palestinians that lived in Israel since independence have benefited greatly and had no complaints until recently, but they couldn’t help but become radicalized.  Their population was increasing and soon we would be a minority - voted out or run out.

“When we got back, we tried to tell our friends about what was happening in Israel, but most didn’t seem to care.  They didn’t feel 'Jewish' and certainly didn’t identify with the plight of Israel.  If anything, they felt we should just give the Arabs what they want and be done with it.  Most were living the American dream, were well educated and successful.  A small group took an interest including the two couples you see here with us.  Others might have wondered about what was happening but just couldn’t pay the price, especially when it came to the vaccination and the Mark.  The idea of giving up everything for a stupid vaccination hardly seemed important.  We have also been taught to trust the authorities and our government so the idea of going against the establishment and leaving everything behind was just too much for the average Jew. "

Brett broke in, “We understand.  It is pretty much the same with us.  Our friends at church should have known better, but there was too much to lose.  Not only that, as you well know we were great supporters of Israel and thought that the American President and the rest of the government was as well.  We couldn't believe what happened.  Now we know better. ”

Avi continued, “The issue of taking a 'Mark' was the final straw for me.  I remember the numbers on my granddad’s arm.  But we were also taken by surprise.  We knew America was a 'fair weather friend' the way it courted Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and other Muslim countries, but we never expected it to turn against Israel.  When faced with leaving everything or taking the Mark, the rest of our little group went with their gut feeling.  We had a sense something was wrong.  Now we wonder why?  What is the reason for this dilemma?”

Joe, the youth pastor, interjected, “Exactly our thought as well.  Something big must be going on.  Just bear with us.  We’re not going to beat you over the heads with the Bible, but let’s look at what we have in common.  We can both agree that the Old Testament was written over thousands of years and has a common thread – to communicate God’s plan and purpose for Jews and Gentiles alike. The big difference between us is we believe Jesus Christ is the Messiah.  You’re still waiting but expect Him to come, right?  So we can agree to disagree on that point." 

“I think we agree that the Bible is a book of prophecy.  Jews returning to the land, the wars against the new nation of Israel, the Muslim opposition, including the huge war a few years ago referred to as the 'The Gog-Magog' conflict (Ezekiel 38) are clearly described in your Scripture.  We can sit down and show this to you without ever going to the New Testament – in great detail and with accuracy as to the countries involved in each war.  The Book of Daniel is clear about the rise of the Antichrist, the Defense Treaty he signs with Israel and his betrayal of Israel.  Jeremiah 51 and 52 deals with 'Prophetic Babylon.'  Zechariah 4 and Revelation 11 both deal with two witnesses – 'two olive trees and two lamp stands.'"  Joe went into an explanation of what these passages were referring to.

He continues, “I know evangelicals come off as ‘fair weather friends’ to Jews when they are told that Christians are going to rapture and leave the Jews holding the bag – the full on persecution of the Great Tribulation, but we were wrong.  You really are God’s chosen people and He has been faithful to keep you all these years – over 4,000 since Abraham.  As much as many wanted to forget their 'Jewishness' and blend into the surrounding society, you just couldn’t do it.  The fact is, God loves you and has protected you.  Now, bear with me a minute.  Let’s assume Jesus was the Messiah – not the reigning king you wanted and expected, but 'the Passover Lamb of God' that restored man’s personal relationship with God.  You could be proud of the fact that through you all the nations of the earth have been blessed and salvation came to the Gentiles.

“Okay, let’s also assume for a moment that we are in the 'last days'.  I think we would all agree that it certainly seems like we are.  The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is going to judge the earth and your Messiah, whoever he is, is going to set up His Kingdom on earth.  Okay, Avi, in a Jewish court, how many witnesses does it take to convict someone?”  “Two,” says Avi.  “Exactly,” says Joe.  “In this case, God has two witnesses – Jews and Christians, the two Olive Trees and the two Lamp Stands, signifying two corporate entities. (found in Revelation and Jeremiah) That means we have been thrown together whether we like it or not, whether we understand it or not.  Our destinies are completely intertwined.  We are here because we are both His chosen people and we stand together to prove His faithfulness.

“I don’t want to put a trip on you.  Just consider these things.  Does it make any sense to you?  There is a lot more to it and we can continue later if you like.”

Avi was in deep reflection.  Finally he looked up and said, “A few years ago I wouldn’t have given it a second thought, but after all that has happened, we have to keep an open mind.  And we certainly need to help each other and stand together because we are facing a formidable foe.  We thank you for sharing and want to continue these discussions.  What do the rest of you think,” he asks looking at his little band?  Bill said, “Joe, we are desperate and don’t have many options.  We feel G..d told us to flee and we did.  We trust Yeshua with our lives.  Thank you for your hospitality. If it is okay with you we would like to stay a while and continue to explore our mutual interests. ”

The conversation went on the rest of the afternoon.  We didn’t want to push but let God open their eyes and let them find the answers.  This comes by revelation, so we pray for them knowing only God can remove the scales from their eyes.  More tomorrow.  

 

November 11  Economic Meltdown, Riots and War

We spent yesterday with our Jewish friends exploring the Bible, sharing our thoughts and revelations.  Today most are out foraging in the neighborhood so I want to write a little about the economic events leading up to "D" Day. (the Desecration of the Temple)

There were several warning signs.  The first was the dot.com bust in the early 2000s, which was followed by a huge real estate bubble in the mid 2000s followed by the bank bust at the end of the decade.  This led to Wall Street and big business bailouts.  These were somewhat interrelated because the housing crisis began with excessive lending to people who couldn’t afford homes.  So called “liar loans” were based on fictitious income, and as housing prices soared, some people were making as much on house appreciation as they were in their job.  It was easy to refinance or get home equity loans so people borrowed heavily against the asset they thought would never go down in price. The house had become more than a home.  It was a big "piggy bank" full of equity.

Then the crash came and to make matters worse the banks had packaged and resold the real estate loans as derivatives packages.  This leveraged the debt to an astronomical amount.  By 2011, the average price of a home had dropped in half and in the next few years it dropped in half again, leaving just about everyone “under water” – owing more than the property value.

The implosion of the housing market caused the mortgage and securities markets to crash because of packaging of mortgages in derivatives.  One type, the credit default swap, insured these loans and when they failed there was a cascade effect.  The insurance giant AIG had to be bailed out in order to save some of the major banks in the US and around the world who had invested heavily in these derivative instruments.  The response of the government and the Federal Reserve was to pour trillions of dollars into banks and Wall Street.  Did they learn their lesson?  No.  In five years, the derivative exposure and debt soared to quadrillions!

To make matters worse, they put the “Sovereign Debt" of the Euro nations into derivatives which multiplied the effect of their default.  The first US company to fall, MF Global Holdings, had $6 billion in European Sovereign debt, but the effect of derivatives was to multiply the amount by a factor of 40 or more!  Derivatives eventually brought down the entire world economy.  A few years ago the world GDP was just over $50 trillion but the derivative debt exposure was over $1.5 quadrillion!  Once it began to unwind, there was no stopping.  First Greece followed quickly by Spain and Italy.  It didn’t stop with the PIIGS (Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece and Spain), but quickly spread to England, France and beyond.  The European Union was in shambles.

Just as the economy was beginning to implode, the “Occupy Wall Street” movement began and quickly spread throughout America and the world.  It began as an amorphous, unfocused movement expressing outrage at the bailouts and huge salaries and bonuses paid out to the executives who caused the problem in the first place.  The gap between the rich and the poor was growing all over the world.  Eventually, even the President of the United States joined the class warfare on the side of the poor entitled masses. The violence began to slowly escalate and spread from one city to the next.  Violence begat more violence.  The authorities had no choice but to crack down.  This continued to escalate until downtown business centers were charred ruins.

Ironically this led to more unemployment. Government grew and the private sector shrunk under a pile of taxes and debt. Rich, middle income and poor were all angry.  The movement was made up of long term poor, college graduates unable to find jobs, teens, middle managers, and even executives.  The “Occupy” protests eventually began to take shape.  The two sides hardened and the clashes grew more serious.

War broke out in the Middle East as Syria and the Palestinians began an all out attack against Israel.  With its back to the wall, Israel nuked Damascus and threatened to do the same to Iran.  The war came to a halt.  America was furious with Israel for going nuclear and imposed the defense treaty on Israel, which included the stationing of thousands of American troops, supplies, missiles and air craft on Israeli soil.  The Defense Treaty was signed on Passover.

Islamic hatred of Israel and America spread.  Militant terrorists and solar activity successfully brought down the greater part of the power grid in America by a well coordinated attack on strategic targets, along with a suitcase nuclear weapon in Chicago resulting in hundreds of thousands of casualties.  Loss of the grid resulted in the breakdown in communications, delivery of goods to stores, massive looting and utter chaos as gangs roamed freely through urban and surrounding rural areas.

Martial law was declared.  Checkpoints around the country screened everyone traveling whether by air, bus or personal auto.  The Army and National Guard eventually restored order.  The grid was restored in a few months, but it took longer to get the supply lines flowing with staples to stores.  People began hoarding food and fuel.  It became hard to keep anything in stock. The world economy was imploding.

Well, this gives you a better idea of the events leading up to now.  We invited our Jewish friends to stay with us and they agreed.  We are now one big, happy family of 14.  It’s great!  I’ll share more on that tomorrow.

 
 

November 12  We Pow Wow and Exchange Stories

This morning we collected whatever we could sit or lay on and gathered in the big media room on the second floor of the school.  There was a fall chill in the air as we approached Thanksgiving.  This was bound to be more surreal than ever this year as the “Beast people” did everything they could to find the hold outs.  Talk about trick or treat!

We were anxious to hear how we all ended up here.  Brett started by telling how he had run his family hardware store and transitioned to real estate during the boom years.  When the trouble began, rioters cleaned out the store and burned it down.  You know what happened to real estate.  It kept going downhill. Brett kept a few rentals but struggled like most people.

Brett began to share with the group, “You all have to know that we Christians were totally blindsided by what happened.  We thought America was an exceptional nation, moral, the power for good in the world, a friend of Israel.  We opposed dictators and fought evil.  As a matter of fact, the church was instrumental in supporting successive administrations, especially because of their stand on Israel.  As you know, we felt the nation of Israel’s rebirth was a fulfillment of prophecy.  So when the President turned on Israel, we were shocked. 

"Then our friends and relatives began to disappear.  Since the Antichrist required the "Mark", we haven't heard from any of our relatives or friends.  Our two kids are grown and don’t live in town.  We haven’t heard from them for weeks.  My wife Doris and I were planning to get away, but the day before we were to leave, she was caught up in one of the sweeps of those who hadn’t been vaccinated in the shopping mall.  They took her to their “quarantine center” where she would be given a choice to be vaccinated or not.  We had talked about it and she was clear on what not to do so I can only assume the worst.  But before we go on, tell us about yourselves and how you got here".

“Well, as you know, I’m Avi.  I was the cantor in the synagogue.  My relatives are death camp survivors from Poland.  We have experience with “Marks” and one way trips to the nice hot showers.  I wasn’t about to cooperate in that.  I have to tell you that I also was impressed with the Administration and Christian support for Israel.  Having lived in Israel several years, I knew how real and sincere that support was.  We couldn’t have made it without you.  However, I must say that we were not very happy about the Defense Treaty your President made Israel sign.  When the huge war broke out (what we are now calling Gog-Magog or World War III), there was America fighting by our side. 

We were elated by the rebuilding of the Temple.  That was a 2000 year old dream finally come true.  We thought our long sad history was finally coming to an end.  Imagine our shock when your President entered the Temple to sacrifice a pig and the sacrilege of declaring himself to be God.  It happened so quickly.  Jews revolted against him and his troops.  Our people were slaughtered without mercy.  Then there was the announcement of the pandemic and the requirement that everyone be vaccinated and Marked.  Since I’ve been back here in the States I tried to explain the importance of all this to the congregation, but as usual American Jews don’t really care that much about what goes on in Israel.  I suppose most consider themselves to be more American than Jew anyway so there was no outrage on their part.  I talked to my wife and two closest friends here, Bill and Curt, and we decided we would rather die than succumb to this treachery.”

“Hi everyone.  I’m Helen, Avi’s wife.  I don’t understand what has been happening, but I will tell you all this.  I think we made the right decision.  Not only has America and this Administration showed itself to be untrustworthy, there is a religious undercurrent that I don’t like.  The President has declared himself to be the Messiah and believe me, the Messiah of our Bible is nothing like him.”  A chorus of “amens” echoed throughout the room.  “Something is happening to the people who are vaccinated and Marked.  They seem to lose their personality and have a psychic connection with one another that is eerie to say the least.  People have lost their conscience as they turn in friends and neighbors they have known their whole life as if duty supersedes all else, or as you have put it, they follow the collective “will of the hive.”  As to joining you guys, we know we need friends and deep down know we can count on you with our lives.  Don’t ask me how, but I know.”

“Hi, I’m Bill and I’ve known Avi and Helen for many years.  In my past life I was an MD specialized in Internal Medicine – guess I still am – just nowhere to 'practice'.  We were in the same synagogue and our families are close.  We have been talking about all this for years now, wondering what is happening and what the real agenda is.  When the so-called plague story came out (and that is all it is), Avi asked me about it.  I went on what is left of the Internet (it is so controlled by the government now), and all I could find were a few stories with pictures of people hemorrhaging and dying in hours.  They looked more like pictures taken years ago of Ebola victims.  There was no hard data, nothing.  I also observed the results of the vaccinations.  I got a vial of the vaccine to study it.  It looked like some kind of complex DNA was mixed into it.  It was not like any vaccine I had ever seen before.  When you talk about the hive mentality, otherwise flamboyant personalities go flat and people have a weird connection.  I got out just in time.  I’ve actually been in hiding for several weeks.  There is no way a healthcare provider can get away with not being vaccinated.  The strange thing is that colleagues that at one time opposed the President became ardent, almost worshipful supporters.”

“Hi folks, I’m Cathy.  I’m a pediatrician and my experience is similar to my husband's.  We’ve both been into our career rather than family.  Avi and the others have been our family.  We first became suspicious at the time of the treaty.  Israel always depended only on itself for defense, but once they used the nuclear option, the only way to keep the entire world from turning against Israel was to bow to the Administration’s insistence that they sign the Defense Treaty.  Once WWIII broke out, we felt better about it because America really did come to her aid.  But the sacrifice in the Temple was beyond the pale for most Jews.  We knew we had to run, but had no idea where to or even why.  Surely, there must be a reason for this mess.  Where is it all headed?  I must admit I am really afraid.  How could G..d let this happen?"

“Hi, I’m Curt, and this is my wife Marta from Argentina.  We met while I was doing a project down there – love at first sight, I must say.  We got married a few months ago.  Marta attended the largest synagogue in Buenos Aires.  I’ll let her tell her story.  I’m in international business and have been working for an Israeli technology company that sells products around the world.  I travel frequently to the Middle East, Europe and Latin America overseeing our sales operations.  I have connections to the Mossad.  I guess I can tell you now without having to kill you (kidding of course).  According to them, America was always playing both ends against the middle.  They needed Israel as a counter balance in the Middle East, but they also had to be on good terms with the Islamic countries because they had the oil America so badly needed.  The political forces in America began to see Israel as an ultimate liability.  After the 'Arab Spring' radical Islamic forces seized power in most of the moderate countries and with the radicalization of Turkey, Egypt, Morocco and Libya and Iran leading the charge, it was just a matter of time before they began their march to the sea.  When the Syrian regime was pushed to the wall by the west, al-Assad launched a massive attack on Israel with help from Gaza, and even Egypt and Iran indirectly.  Israel responded in the only way they could, a tactical nuclear strike on Damascus.  That ended the war temporarily, but everyone knew it was just a matter of time before the whole Islamic world came down on Israel.  Israel was forced to sign the Defense Treaty with America and we thought that a good thing at first. Meanwhile, Mossad remained suspicious of your President and his intentions.  But the Temple rebuild came off without a hitch and Israelis rejoiced as sacrifices resumed for the first time in nearly 2,000 years.  When I heard about the resurrection of your President and the sacrifice in the Temple, I knew it was over.  I told Marta it was time to pack our things and we were off.  Off to what?  I had no idea, but I had a sense that G..d had something for us in this.  I didn’t know what.”

“Well, as Bill told you.  I’m Marta from Buenos Aires and I too am from WWII holocaust survivors.  We had always wondered if anything like that would ever happen again – well in Israel, maybe, but we felt safe being so far away.  Bill traveled but I was never concerned.  I always wondered why we were 'G..d’s chosen people.' What was there about us that was so special?  I never felt very special.  If anything I just wanted to blend in with the people around me whether here or in Argentina and just exist.  But Avi is the one who kept telling us he had a feeling that God wasn’t done with us yet, and that we may have an important role to play.  Yeah!  Right?  This never made sense to me, but now I wonder.”

“Hi everyone.  We’re so glad that you are here.  I’m Gideon.  In my former life I was a history teacher in the community college.  I loved history and the students.  It was my passion.  I followed the continued expansion of the American empire with great interest. All of the commentators and pundits were calling for America’s demise and Europe, China or India to replace it as the world power, but I couldn’t see that happening.  Europe was a divided mess.  We thought this may be the beginning of a new Millennium of peace and prosperity.  When the Administration turned against Israel and even Jews and Christians, I couldn’t believe it.  Our little group had been meeting in Brett’s home weekly and we were beginning to not only question who and what we really were, but to plan our escape.  Unfortunately Jane, my wife, and kids were caught in a sweep.

"We met week after week but things weren't adding up.  Our churches were becoming arms of the State and its propaganda.  Dissent was ridiculed and the churches even disciplined those who didn't support the government.  We turned out to be a target of the church elders.  They were going to turn us into Homeland Security. That's when we decided to go."

“I’m Dana.  I was a first year college student and part of the group.  I’m not as smart or well read as most here, but a few years ago the Lord came into my life and the more time I spent in the Bible (both Old and New Testaments ), the more He showed me things that were happening and about to happen.  I approached it with an open mind and just took what I read at face value.  I was particularly interested in the return of Jews to the land and events that lead up to the last days and the tribulation.  From my reading, I was convinced that we would all go through that seven year period of trouble and persecution – not necessarily in a bad sense but in a triumphant way because God was with us and wanted us to stand as a testimony against the Antichrist and the 'New World Order'. God showed me that Jews and Christians represented His two witnesses on the earth during the tribulation and that we would stand together and give our lives for Him.   Somehow, God had a plan for us and I was anxious to see what it was.”

“Hi friends.  I'm Max.  I was a part of the same home meeting from church.  As sheriff, I have been watching Homeland Security extend its authority and reach over the years and the gradual erosion of individual liberties.  This really bothered me because it almost seemed to be a conspiracy.  Threat by threat more and more was taken away, but good old law abiding Americans took it pretty well.  When the riots and looting started, people clamored for more law enforcement.  Reaction met counter reaction as the troubles escalated.  The straw that broke the camel’s back for me was the events in Israel.  Our little group realized we had completely misread prophesy.  We expected to be raptured (you’ve heard of this term?), and yes, we were going to leave you holding the bag.  But it didn’t happen that way and we are all here in this together.  Anyway, I keep my ear on the police band and try and pick up on troop or homeland security movements in the area. I guess you might say I'm in charge of security around here.  Welcome aboard.”

“Hi guys.  I’m Joe and this is my girl friend/fiancée and hopefully wife some day, Etta.  I was the Youth Pastor of our church, just graduated from Seminary.  I have always been a little outside the box and kind of rebelled at Seminary because they were teaching the same old things for the past 200 years when it came to prophecy.  Some of it just didn’t ring true.  For example, they say America isn’t in prophecy and therefore has to be destroyed or decline so it is no longer a factor.  That just didn’t make any sense.  America was still the biggest economy, the biggest military by far with over half the military expenditures in the world.  It was a “Christian” country and supported Israel – the perfect description of Revelation 17-19.  But New Testament aside, Daniel 9:27 is very specific about the returned Israel being forced to sign a defense treaty with the Antichrist (referred to in other parts of the Old Testament as well), making a covenant which he would break in three and a half years – which he did.  America was Israel's only friend and the only country with the military power to enforce the peace treaty.  After we are supposed to be long gone because of the rapture, the Bible talks about rebuilding the Temple, resuming sacrifice and so forth.  Guys, we have seen that happen.  We think we know why and can talk about that later.  There is no doubt, something heavy is coming down and we are in it together.”

“Hi guys, I’m Etta.  I grew up in New York City.  My dad was a big Wall Street Banker – not exactly the most popular job in this world.  We lost everything.  My dad was thrown in jail.  I moved out here looking for a reason to live and found my Messiah.  Fortunately I also met Joe and was looking forward to a long life together but I'm happy to take it one day at a time.  We must all be exhausted so I’ll just leave it at that.”

With that, we said our good nights, established a watch with six hour duty and crashed – more tomorrow.

 
 

November 14  We Forage for Supplies

We've been sitting around getting to know one another for a couple of days.  Today we need to venture outside of our little refuge and look for supplies.  Laura is in charge since she came from Thor’s survivalist group and has the most experience.  Here is what she had to share with us.

“The secret to not getting caught is to hide in plain sight.  We have to learn to act like everyone else does.  Luckily it is raining today so we will not be conspicuous in rain gear with hoods.  Notice that everyone that has been “Marked/vaccinated” has a flat look.  They don’t smile and hardly even talk to one another unless they have to.  They look straight ahead and do whatever they have been assigned.  We suspect they may be telepathically connected – at least to the “Beast” if not to one another.  We can fake a Mark, but it won’t hold up under scrutiny because the Mark they use glows under ultra violet light and there is a chip embedded in the Mark that they can read.  People don’t show much emotion unless they are listening to a message from the “Beast/Antichrist”.  There is no room for small talk.  So when we go outside, follow me.  Walk purposefully, as if you know where you going and what you are supposed to do.  If someone talks to one of us, answer in a simple, matter of fact way.  Tell them you have been tasked to carry supplies, find the unmarked or something like that.  Okay, let’s go.”

So Laura led a group of eight of us outside the school building.  We began to walk deeper into one of the abandoned neighborhoods.  The best place to find supplies was in a house someone left behind, although most had already been picked over.  These weren’t exactly the safest places to be, but there was safety in numbers.  It was kind of eerie.  Neighborhoods that once teemed with life were abandoned.  Lawns and shrubs were unkempt.  Cars lay dead with flat tires and broken windows.  Junk littered the driveways.  Not a soul was in sight.  We tried to look like a patrol, hunting for stragglers.  Two at a time would slip off into a house - mainly in search of canned goods.  The rest of us would stand in a clump outside staring at the house so that in case people were watching they would think we were just waiting for the rest of our group.  With that we were able to go from house to house in broad daylight looking like we belonged.

It was one thing to try and fool the people, but we wanted to avoid police or military patrols so we kept our eyes and ears open.  On our way back a cute black lab came up to us.  He was probably an abandoned stray.  We tried to ignore him, but he kept running ahead wagging his tail like crazy and then running back to us.  We thought he might leave and go off to his owners, but he followed us back instead.  We decided that a good watch dog may not be a bad idea.  We named him “Noche” because he was black as night.

After depositing our treasures, Dana said she felt we missed something, so we decided to make one more foray back into the neighborhood.  This time we went down the other side of the street.  We came to an older "two story" tract house.  The front door was off the hinge. Dana pointed to it and said, “We have to go in here.”  This time the whole group went in.  We heard something upstairs and Dana rushed up, calling out, “It’s okay kids.  Come on out.  We’re not one of them.  It's safe with us.”  The door in front of her cracked open and there were two scared and lonely looking kids.  She walked up to them.  “Hi kids.  I’m Dana.  I was a college student when this started.  I understand what it’s like to be scared.  I lost my family too.  Come on out.  We won’t hurt you.  Your parents told you we would come and Jesus sent us.”  The kids walked out into the hallway and looked down the stairs at the little group of us.  Dana approached them slowly, holding out her arms.  “It’s okay.  I’m just a big kid.  We're here to help you.”  With that, they rushed into her arms sobbing, after being left on their own for days.  “Come with us and we’ll get you something to eat and a warm, safe place to stay."

We went back to the school and made some hot oatmeal for the kids.  Dana said, “We’re all scared too.  We’ve been on the run for a few weeks now.  How about you?  Can you tell us a little about yourselves?”  The boy said, “I’m Craig and my sister Kendra and I were at school one day when they came for our parents.  They told us if they were ever taken to avoid getting caught at all costs and to NEVER take the Mark.  They said God would send someone for us and He did.  We know He sent you.  People have come in the house before.  This time we felt it was different so we came out.  You would have never found us.  We have a secret compartment in the closet of our bedroom – a place dad made for us just in case something bad happened.  We know God is in control and we were supposed to meet you.”  “Wow,” Dana exclaimed.  “We feel that God has brought us together too.  Just consider us your big family.”  Dana introduced the kids around to everyone and we just sat around talking like old friends.

What a day.  We not only got some supplies but added a dog and two kids to our family.  Where on earth is this going?

 
 

November 15  New Additions Settle and Questions Continue

Well, yesterday’s foray out into the community yielded surprises.   Noche is a great watch dog.  He is extremely alert and aware of people outside.   If there is a noise outside, he comes running up to one of us and quietly growls letting us know someone is out there.  It is amazing that he knew not to bark.  We discovered this because shortly after returning, he came up to Dana and let out a low growl.  None of us heard anything, but we sent Laura out to check and sure enough a small patrol passed by outside.  Noche seemed to know if they were friendly or a threat.

The other surprises are Craig and Kendra, ages 13 and 11.  They were pretty brave kids hiding by themselves in their secret room. Their parents had gone out to get supplies but never returned so they were undoubtedly caught by the authorities.  Several months ago they had dropped out of church because they felt it was ignoring prophetic events.  They met in their homes much as our little group did and were doing what they could to prepare.  They assured the kids that they would be okay and God would take care of them.  The kids were amazingly calm considering they had been hiding for nearly two weeks all by themselves.  What a coincidence that the same day we found the kids we found the dog.  Noche and the kids took to each other.  They were lonely and needed a friend. We watched them roll around on the floor together and play fetch.

Craig and Kendra have no thought they will see their mom and dad again.  What happens to people who refuse the Mark?  According to reports we have been getting authorities are trying to scare and intimidate anyone who refuses to be vaccinated.  They tell them they are dead anyway from the flu.  If they refuse the Mark and don't honor the Antichrist, they don't get vaccinated.  Dissent is not tolerated so they make an example of them.  We have heard from several good sources that they have set up banks of guillotines and are publicly beheading those who refuse to receive the Mark.  I hate to even write this, but Revelation 20:4 says, “I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony about Jesus and because of the word of God. They had not worshiped the Beast or its image and had not received its Mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years.”

We sat around in the afternoon and talked about our chances of getting caught.  The odds were pretty high that we would and that meant certain death.  It would be almost impossible to last another three plus years before the Lord returned, but we would try.  We needed to warn as many people as possible.

Dana said to the whole group, “I don’t want to push anything on any of our Jewish friends, but we feel particularly indebted to you although many Christians may have not always shown it.  We know we were called to be in this together.  If there is one thing that all of this has taught us, it’s that our lives here aren’t about things, position and prestige.  We all know this life isn’t the end. 

"I have a question for you.  You have always celebrated Passover – the blood of the lamb on your doorposts so the angel of death will pass over you.  The heart cry of David in the Psalms was to live in God’s presence and have a relationship with Him – in spite of his sin and imperfection.  It is about relationship, not keeping law, behaving a certain way (and the same could be said for Christians).  God had a plan to bring the Messiah to earth – “the lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world”.  Everything you have believed and practiced points to the reality of restoring man’s relationship with God.  This is an issue for every single person.  Do we go on in our pride, our own goodness and self-sufficiency or do we cry out as David did for mercy to restore that relationship?’

Brett continued, “You have seen that the events of the past three and a half years are clearly spelled out in your sacred scriptures as well as ours.  This shouts plan and purpose.”  Dana added, “God has been working in and through His peoples (whether Jews or Christians), so we will stand up to the world and declare that our God is good, loving and kind.  Our God has chosen weak, unworthy earthen vessels and all we can do is declare that He is sufficient.  He is faithful.  Whether we live or die, we belong to Him.”  Finally, I added, “We can’t convince you but ask you to simply open your hearts and pray and ask God to reveal His Messiah to you personally.  We believe we have all been chosen to stand together and declare His goodness, love and faithfulness to this deceived world.  People are blindly following and even worshipping a madman who thinks he is god.  They are rounding up and killing all who disagree.  Surely there are some “undecided” who have not bowed to the Antichrist.  We need to help them however we can.”

It was getting late now.  The kids were cuddled up with Noche over on a mattress in the corner.  The rest of us sang some Hebrew hymns we all knew, and gave thanks to the Lord and for one another, committing ourselves to Him for as long as He gives us breath.  The whole group was visibly and emotionally touched as the presence of God filled the place.  There was no denying, we had all had an encounter we would never forget.  Avi, the cantor, said, “Thank you brothers and sisters for we truly are family.  We will carefully and prayerfully consider these things.  I would urge my fellow Jews to do so quickly for time is not on our side.  If we are all part of the same plan, then we need to come to terms with our God and Maker and see if these things are true.” 

 
 

November 16  We Find Our Purpose

The day began uneventfully.  We woke up and prepared breakfast.  Things were quiet outside, kind of cold and foggy after the rain the past few days.  We decided it was time to sit down and talk as one big group about what we were going to do next.  The school seemed pretty safe for now, but we couldn’t just sit here and do nothing.  We needed to be active doing something.  So Brett threw out the question to the group.

To our surprise, the kids jumped in first.  Craig said, “We need to find as many people as we can and help them see what is coming.  They have to keep from taking the Mark at all costs.  And they need to get into a relationship with God because that is the only thing that will last.”  Wow, we all thought.  Pretty profound for kids!  “But isn’t that dangerous,” I asked?  “Of course," said Craig, "but we’re all going to die someday anyway so we might as well die trying.  Our mom and dad knew the dangers, but they felt their resistance to taking the Mark was nothing compared to the price believers have paid down through the ages.  What is a little suffering compared to eternity?  I believe them with all my heart.”  “So do I,” said his sister Kendra.  “We have to stand strong at all costs and God will help us.  He will give us strength.” I wouldn't have been surprised if the dog chimed in with an "amen."

“Well,” Brett said, “God said the children will lead us.  They speak the truth.”  Dana said, “Brothers and sisters, we have to look at the big picture.  Here we are two groups of people brought together in these circumstances representing in microcosm God’s two peoples: Jews who brought us the Messiah and Christian followers of the Messiah.  The first group has struggled for 4,000 years against all odds as Satan tried his best to wipe them off the face of the earth and now he is making his last stand trying to wipe all of us off.  But the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God who brought you out of Egypt, through the wilderness and into the Promised Land more than once (parenthetically), is asking His peoples to stand one more time before the Messiah ushers in His kingdom.  We are so close, within a few years.  And this time our dear friends, you will see the reigning King, the Lion of the Tribe of Judah.  He will come in great glory, and little groups of people like us all over the world will usher in the way for Him to come back.”

We were stunned by the truth of her words and so touched by the Presence of God, we dropped to our knees and began to pray as we realized how unworthy and yet privileged we were to be allowed to live in such a day.  The Cantor began to pray out loud, “King Yeshua, I repent for my stiff neck, for my sin, for hating You and Your people all these years.  Be my Messiah and Lord.  Come into this old temple of my body and breathe your life into these dry bones as you promised in Ezekiel 37.  From this day forward I am Yours and You are mine.”  In turn, each Jew asked Yeshua (Jesus) the Messiah to come into their lives and each Christian rededicated themself to the Lord.  At that point, we all were sure that whether we lived or died, we would soon be with the Lord for all eternity.  We had already lost everything we had, including our careers, our friends, our reputation, our homes, many loved ones, but saw more clearly than words could express the glory set before us.  This world had nothing to offer any longer.  Somehow God had brought us together as a family and a witness.

After an hour of prayer and sharing, I said, “Well our young friends are right.  Somehow, God will have to lead us to people in hiding like us so we can increase the testimony and stand against the darkness that is taking over the earth.  Our goal isn’t survival but to stand as a testimony to our God.  And if our time comes to leave this clod of dirt, we do so with joy just as Craig and Kendra’s parents did without looking back.  'For we look for a city whose builder and maker is God.' (Hebrews 11:10)

For the rest of the afternoon we talked about what just happened to them.  We explained that God’s plan was to not just have a temple made of stones, but that we human beings were His Temple and He wanted to dwell in our human spirit – that God shaped vacuum we have all experienced and heard about.  What happened to them today is the same thing that happened to the Apostle Paul who was once the enemy of the Christians, leading the persecution.  We can’t explain it, but our lives are changed. 

From that subject we talked about our mission.  We had to be guided to the right groups of people.  There could be spies and people who weren’t sympathetic.  We would travel by twos thereby limiting any losses if caught.  And we wouldn’t necessarily bring people back to our group for the same reason, but would help them establish their own little hub.  We would set up a network and secure communication between groups.  Some would join us in our mission while others would just be out for themselves trying to survive and stay away from the government forces.  Even so, many will have their eyes opened.  Our options were limited to life or death.

We could point them to Scripture which clearly describes the events leading up to the Tribulation and to the present time.  It was apparent to all that had not taken the Mark that what was happening had a spiritual component.  And if something demonic could take control of these people’s lives, why couldn’t God take control of ours and fill us with joy and purpose?  Never before in history had the choice been so clear – “Choose this day whom you will serve” – and on a worldwide level.  Our job was to find as many as we could and present the alternatives.

Our little group took this Scripture as our motto, “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.” (Revelation 12:11)
 

November 17  There’s Going to be a Wedding

We all woke up early the next day and had a big surprise waiting.  Joe and Etta had been dating for a while, but ever since things had gone crazy their engagement seemed to be on hold.  They came to the group and said they felt they should get married and maybe the Cantor could perform the ceremony.  They saw no reason to wait, not knowing how long they had, but at least they could get married until “death do them part.” 

They met in college through a Christian group on campus.  They were just friends for a couple of years, part of a larger fellowship.  It wasn’t until the last year that things began to gel.  Joe had been raised in a traditional Christian home but like most kids experimented during high school.  It wasn’t until he got to college that he realized he needed focus in his life.  His love was working with kids, and the Bible, so he did everything he could to prepare for a youth ministry.  Etta was raised in a more liberal home but found the Lord early in college.  She was hoping to find the perfect husband who would love God, her and future kids.  When she found Joe, she knew she had found the right one for her. 

Once the troubles began they thought they may have to forget marriage.  After all, how do you have a relationship when you’re on the run?  They thought about it and said – the same way you would if you weren’t.  This way they still had each other.

We all thought it was a great idea, so we quickly planned it for the evening.  The girls did their best preparing a wedding feast.  We even found some Champaign for toasts.  Avi conducted an emotionally moving ceremony including stepping on a glass and declaring "mazel tov".  We enjoyed a marvelous feast and fellowship.  Joe was the happiest drifter we had ever seen and Etta was glowing as they went walking off hand in hand after dinner.

 
 

November 18  Crash Course

After the wedding, Avi asked if we could spend the next couple of days bringing them up to speed on things they needed to know and especially wanted to know to how the Old and New Testaments are intertwined when it comes to Messiah and prophecy.  They had a good background in the Old Testament and needed to learn more about the New Testament. 

As we laid it out and started to read through the gospels and some of the other books, they were amazed at how “Jewish” the early Christians were from Jesus to the apostles and even Paul.  Of course, they really were, but that’s beside the point when you have been raised thinking that all Christians hated Jews and just invented a new religion out of whole cloth.  They were also amazed at how much of the New Testament consisted of direct quotes from the Old Testament.  All in all, it was several very intense days of question and answer sessions and exploration together.  They caught on so quickly we couldn’t believe it – understandable considering their spiritual eyes were wide open.  They are like sponges.

We began to develop a plan on how to approach those that were in hiding just like we were.  Surely, God will pull together a people who will stand against the Antichrist and the insidious world he is creating.

 
 

November 21  How We Were Deceived

Today we talked about our situation.  Again, we couldn’t believe we were so blind to have missed the signs.  Whether Jews or Christians, we should have recognized the Defense Treaty between the U.S. and Israel.  But neither group paid much attention to prophecy.  None of us thought critically about the news that was fed to us daily. None of us questioned our rabbis or pastors.

We were surprised to learn that many Jews know very little about the Old Testament.  That is left to the Rabbi, much like Christians leave matters of the “Book” to the pastors and priests.  It wasn't until the “Mark of the Beast” that either group got it – Christians because they had read about it and Jews because the Holocaust was fresh in their memories.

Beyond that we realized that our senses and minds had been deadened by the constant barrage of news, the “spin” and the commentary.  We believed and trusted what we were told by our family, what we were taught in school, college and church/synagogue.  Most people were still following their leaders with blinders on, thinking they were on the brink of a brave new world.  The American leader mesmerized the world with his speeches, his promises of peace and prosperity.  He was absolutely the most believable and persuasive person the public had heard since the Germans held onto Adolf Hitler's every word.  He seemed so kind and gentle, soft spoken, visionary and strong.  He insisted that he believed in the Judeo-Christian religion and his sacrifice in the Temple was just a way of bringing them both together, including Islam, if they would accept it.  He didn't seem to care that the pig sacrifice was a huge offense to the Muslim world as well, not to mention his declaration of being god.

Now that we look back with hindsight we are surprised at how gullible and easily deceived we are.  First the concept of the pre-tribulation rapture made the study of prophecy irrelevant to Christians. Second, we believed that the United States was not a "player" in end times prophecy even though it was dominant in every way - a so-called Christian nation supporting Israel with the largest military and economy in the world.  By tying producing countries into us, the penultimate consumers, we controlled their destiny.

We forgot the old saying, "follow the money" as the banksters fleeced the little people.  Strange that government officials sided with the bankers every step of the way.  The bailout of Greece did nothing for Greece but just paid the banks interest they were due.  When Portugal, Italy, Spain and other countries began to fall, the bailouts were always for the banks, not the people. For years, we didn’t understand that the money elite were merely taking care of each other.  Once we realized that “we the people” had been reduced to serfdom, hopelessly over our heads in debt, there was nothing we could do.  An entitlement society was born that depended on government handouts.  Taxes were increased on all of us to the point that 70 percent of our income went to the government who doled it out to the needy.  Something was wrong.  Going into debt was just too easy.  It left the little people with nothing and the few elites left with everything.  We had no idea how the global elites were tied together.  This was one heck of a conspiracy – better than anything the best fiction writer could ever dream up. 

Social Security wasn't abolished but increased slowly for the senior citizens who were still qualified.  Their checks were ravaged by inflation and were barely enough to buy food. The younger people were encouraged to invest in private accounts which had a way of ballooning up to a nice amount, only to be wiped out by inflation or the next bubble.  Foreclosures didn’t stop as the price of housing dropped from an average of $300,000 in 2007 to $125,000 by 2012 and ended up around $10,000 to $25,000 so everyone lost.  There was no equity.  Dot coms like “Facebook” exploded in value only to be wiped out by the next innovation.  Even Apple fell to regulation and competition.  Globalization continued as a long term trend.  The world became the marketplace and wherever products could be made for lower cost, the jobs kept moving.  Countries like Mexico and Indonesia lost their jobs to other countries.  The few elites, whether in China, Europe or the Americas, continued to prosper.  The truth be told, it was the American elites or their lackeys who were sitting on company boards calling the shots.

We were repeatedly told the economy was turning around, jobs were being created (and if not, the government would take care of us), that these were temporary adjustments.  We had no idea that we were falling into a new kind of feudalism where the “haves” lived the life of luxury in gated communities and the “have nots” in ghetto suburbs riddled by drugs and crime.  Families were quickly becoming passé while young people hooked up and babies became wards of the state – remember when we were told that “it takes a village?”  Children were housed and schooled in orphanage/schools and raised to meet the needs of the elites – channeled into various vocations of the new slave state. 

The entertainment industry touted the enlightened approach to child rearing.  Two parent families (with a man and a woman) made up less than ten percent.  Meanwhile, young people were provided with housing and employment along with free drugs, partying and more partying.  Since people couldn’t afford housing, they were told where to live and work.  Neighborhoods turned into a no-man's land because people couldn't afford to keep up a house.  The few that lived in a single family house had large extended families trying to make a go of it.

Given the backdrop of a society in retreat, the most prestigious jobs became the military and para-military (elite units that used to be CIA that infiltrated and destabilized enemies).  Both men and women learned how to take orders and deal with dissent harshly.  The days of rallying on the campus lawns or marching on the capitol were over.  Periodic “terrorist attacks” – bombs in shopping centers, even bombs in cars and IEDs put fear into people who became accustomed to check points going in and out of most buildings, check points along the highway and in all public transportation.  Criminals and dissenters are taken to camps/holding facilities where they permanently disappear.  But in the name of safety and security, the average person embraced the end of freedom.

Political correctness reigned.  Churches that benefited from tax free 501(c)(3) status were not allowed to preach an exclusive message claiming they are “right” and everyone else is “wrong”.  It was illegal to criticize anyone publicly for their lifestyle, beliefs or choices.  For that matter, a new religion of love and acceptance was all that was tolerated.  Up until recently, churches who didn’t receive any money or special treatment from the government were left alone.  Once the “Mark” began, even that ended.  Churches and synagogues were taken over and policed by Homeland Security.  There was no more sin, no more right or wrong, no more individual rights.  We lived for the whole and did whatever the “whole” decided – the common good as defined by the government.

People became passive and accepting.  It took years to evolve but once the crackdown came, it was complete.  Rather than rebel, people went along.  What could they do?  The collective was the only solid thing left.  There was no family, church, school or neighborhood in the traditional sense.  Early on, there were a few dissenters, but it wasn’t long before they either stopped opposing the regime or they “disappeared.”

If you are reading this and can’t believe that it could happen, believe me, it did. . . not overnight but gradually.  Remember all the things you have to do to get on an airplane (take off shoes, throw away liquids, take things out of your pocket, open your computer, go through an x-ray or pat down)?  You know, surveys showed that 90% of the people didn’t mind because at least they feel safer.  In the same way, society began to slowly morph.  Life style “changes” would be glorified by the media and then start to show up all over America.  Marriage was no longer necessary.  Any combination of people made up a family.  It became impossible to control drugs, so they were legalized and doled out according to need.  The government realized no one cared about kids, so “villages” were created to raise families.  I know this sounds crazy, but again, it happened.

The few of us huddled here in this school tried to hold on to our families and friends.  We had already been ostracized by our church and found God and one another in the home meeting.  Our Jewish brothers and sisters had been meeting in the Cantor’s home and were desperately trying to hold on as well.  This may have been the only thing that saved us from the brain-washing machine that overwhelmed most people.  But we were determined to cling to God and one another.  Both groups had a deep feeling that we were not alone in our stand against the war society was waging against us.

More tomorrow. 

 
 

November 22   Life Can Turn on a Dime

Try to imagine being a peasant somewhere in Europe in the middle ages. You are out in the field tilling the soil, minding your business. Your wife is taking care of the kids in the house. Suddenly an approaching army can be heard. I didn't say when or who, because it could have been the Romans, the Vandals, Napoleon or Hitler. The sound could be horses, elephants or tanks. The point is, life can change in a moment. The army plunders everything of value, burns your farm and fields, ravishes your wife and takes you and your sons to a work camp. You have gone from freeman to prisoner in one day only to die of overwork and starvation a few months later.  You had been minding your own business raising your family and it is gone.

You could be a glass maker in Vienna living above your shop enjoying a happy and contented life or the butcher next door. Suddenly, enemy troops are seen coming down the street going from house to house rounding up your neighbors. You are given two minutes to pack one bag per person and then herded out of your flat and onto the street with the others. You are led to the railroad station, stuffed into a cattle car on your way to Auschwitz. When you arrive, they store your few belongings in a pile and take your clothes and dignity. They usher you into the showers to delouse you and get you ready for your new life. You, your family and over a million souls perish in that one camp.  In less than a week everything and everyone is taken from you.

We smugly think this can never happen to us, but tragedy has been visited on the unsuspecting and ill prepared time and again down through history. People living their lives in quietness and peace, working, striving, loving, building only to lose it all in a single day. We think our generation is surely the exception. There has never been a wealthier, more enlightened, educated and blessed people on the earth. We live in a society that is tolerant and respects religion, lifestyle choice and honors and respects our country and leaders. As Christians, we are told that we are either on the verge of a millennium of peace and prosperity or the rapture...and like most people we believed what we were told by our teachers, our leaders and especially our churches and synagogues.

Tell that to the millions of Christians slaughtered  in Africa or the millions purged by the Russians, the Chinese, the Serbs, not to mention a hundred million who died of famine in the past 100 years.  Now add to that the billions who died in the past five years of chaos.

None dared to question even though a few saw disaster approaching. Hardly any Christians read and understand the clear warnings in the Bible and even less pay attention. There were some who warned that the rapture would not come until the end of the Tribulation when the Lord returned just before the judgments are unleashed. These "post-tribbers" were ridiculed and held in contempt for stealing "our blessed hope" - the "secret" rapture.  I know, because that is what I felt.  No one warned about the four horsemen of Revelation 6 - war, famine, economic collapse, death and martyrdom.  We had blinders on!  We somehow ignored Matthew 24:21 which said, "For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be."  So if we were clearly told this would be the greatest tribulation in the history of the world, what were we thinking?  Why were we sitting on our thumbs expecting to escape by rapture?

Why were we so easily deceived? When I think back, I remember it said that if you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it. In fact, the presidential campaigns became more and more negative over the years. It wasn't what you stood for so much as how much money you could raise and how much mud you could sling at your opponent. The results were clear. Negative ads worked. Society was polarized. Half wanted less government and more private initiative and the other half wanted more government and more hand outs. Government wanted more government too so they lobbied heavily for themselves, exacting higher taxes and greater debt as if there would never be any consequences. The rich became the enemy so private jobs evaporated. An unintended consequence was that the middle was taxed as well and as the economy slowed, good, higher paying jobs became scarce and people began to fall down to the lower middle, and lower classes, losing houses and jobs. The super rich survived but the growing number of poor became more dependent on the government until, as I said in my last entry, many of the "novoueau poore" (sorry French speakers, I just invented a new word) had already been herded into public housing - more like barracks and any children into "villages" where they were raised by state workers. The newly poor were given "jobs" by the State.  They would never escape the clutches of the state.

Those of us hiding in the old junior high were among the lucky ones who managed to hold on to jobs and homes until the end. We were the last to have the American Dream and that was taken from us because we refused the vaccination/Mark and could no longer buy or sell or even legally exist. We were no longer marked for rehabilitation but certain death because they said that although we hadn't died, we were probably carriers of the super virus. This is the reason given for hunting us relentlessly.

I realized that few objected publicly to the government. How could they? Terrorists were everywhere: car bombings, mass shootings in schools and shopping malls, roving gangs (armed terrorists we were told) burning down neighborhoods and looting stores. Any dissenter was siding with the enemy. The only safe place to get things was the government warehouses using electronic government credits. No one dared to oppose the State. There was no conservative talk radio, no Constitution or Bill of Rights - just the mercy (or lack thereof) of the State!

We had become world citizens and there was a "new world order" headed by none other than the President of the United States. The best job to be found was to be a part of his military force whose job was to make sure that all the world experienced the wonderful peace - or else (peace at gunpoint).

By the time things got really bad, it was too late. If we had read our Bibles we might have recognized the signs of the times - wars, rumors of wars, pestilence, famine, earthquakes and other natural disasters, brother turning against brother. There had been constant war, wild weather, tsunamis, drought, flood. The intensity and frequency increased the past few years. Time and again people's lives were turned upside down, sometime abruptly and sometime so slowly they didn't know what was happening. No one saw anything wrong with the politically correct revolution, with the government war against terror and disease and bringing peace and safety to the world.

And the truly sad part is that eight out of ten willingly joined the charismatic President and worked diligently to round up the holdouts. And remember, this was done under the guise of a worldwide pandemic and the need to vaccinate everyone. The Mark was to show who was vaccinated and who wasn't, sealing the certain death of those who refused.

So here we are - a little band of survivors hiding in an abandoned Junior High trying to avoid detection and networking with similar groups. We were wondering why and how this happened. More tomorrow.

 

November 23  Time to Move On

We have been hiding in this old Junior High for a couple of weeks now. This morning one of Laura's old survivalist friends, Ty, came by to warn us that we should move on. It is no longer safe to continue here. The military is increasing its search for stragglers. There seems to be a mounting urgency to make sure all have been vaccinated (and received the Mark).

Our survivalist friends keep a pretty good eye out for supplies, hideouts and patrols. They have been scoping out some semi-rural areas that may still have some food production capability. Ty suggested an old, nearly abandoned farming town a few miles outside of town. It would be a dangerous trip but according to Ty there are fruit trees and some gardens still producing vegetables. There are also some wild pigs and chickens wandering around, even a few goats and maybe sheep and cattle. There was an old farm house with a full basement that gives fairly good cover. The trick is going to be getting there without being caught.

Thor had the forethought of sending work clothes issued to field workers and a foreman's uniform along with wide brimmed hats to protect from the sun and hide the fact that none of us had the Mark. Thor also gave the "foreman" official looking orders to move the work detail. We packed quickly, and stored all we could in an old school bus. It was not uncommon to use buses to move work details around. We would surely come upon some road blocks which would require a lot of prayer and some fancy acting. Hopefully they will buy our story.

We set off about one o'clock staying on back roads as much as possible. Ty had a little Vespa which he would use as a scout vehicle to go out ahead of the bus and lead us to the farm. Thor's group knew the area and the location of army checkpoints pretty well. We were thankful for the help. The Vespa sped ahead. If we had no other way through but the checkpoint, Brett was going to act as the foreman to present our transfer papers. Since we were supposedly Marked no other papers were required. Let's just hope they don't check for each person's Mark.

We made our way through a rundown suburb and took back streets to the northwest corner of town. Unfortunately, the road leading out of town is our only way out and the most likely place for a check point. We arrived as planned right about 5:00 p.m. which is their shift change. No one else was in line, so Brett just flashed our papers and was waved on through. Everyone in the back was praying earnestly that they would be blind and distracted. It worked.

A half hour later we arrived at the little town. As we looked around, there were several farm houses in sight. Ty told us that one was occupied by a group of Mormons - interesting, we thought. They were not only prepared for something like this, they weren't about to accept the Mark. It ought to be interesting for them to meet our little group of Christians and Messianic Jews.

We quickly unloaded and moved the school bus into the barn. Joe and Etta walked down the way to the Mormon camp. Fortunately, Ty told them we were coming. We invited them over for dinner tomorrow which is Thanksgiving. 


 

November 24  Thanksgiving with the Mormons

We arrived at our new home just like the Pilgrims on Thanksgiving Day.  We didn't have a turkey, but we did have a pretty good looking farm.  We were looking forward to a celebration.

We were anxious to meet our new neighbors. We thought it would be interesting to compare notes with them. Although our beliefs on essentials of the faith are different, our views of the last days have similarities. Things haven't exactly gone for them they way they thought they would either.

It turns out that both farm-houses were built by Mormon families, but no one ever claimed the one we are in or at least they never made it.  Both are well concealed away from prying eyes, satellites, etc., and the grounds look abandoned.  There is a large basement under each house.  One could only tell on close inspection that there are in fact some gardens, farm animals and fruit trees but only with some difficulty.  They are hidden behind trees and hedges.  The Mormon family consists of an older couple, the Smiths, and their two married children and their families. They used to live in the city, but spent several years developing this "non-working farm" for a time such as this.

We shared Thanksgiving dinner with them.  It was a hodge podge of canned and fresh food from our respective stores.  A couple of big hens passed as turkeys.  We had a great time.  After dinner, we sat down to talk.

The bottom line is that both groups felt blindsided by events the past few years. Yes it matched our respective prophetic views, but the Devil is in the details. We met in our huge basement - an underground area that was much larger than the house above - quite deep in the ground under several feet of concrete between the basement ceiling and ground level. They showed us huge storage rooms full of stockpiles of supplies their friends had laid up over the years. On D-Day the Smiths and their kids and grandkids had been camping and were tipped off not to return to their home so they came straight out to the farm.

As we gathered Sam began his story. He said, "Much like you evangelicals, we Mormons believe we are in the last days (thus our name 'Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints'). We were taught that there would be a great falling away accompanied by war, famine and other natural disasters. Interestingly enough, Mormon beliefs are not that different. We not only saw the signs of the times, but were taught to do something about it in terms of food storage and emergency preparedness. We were one of the few groups of Mormons that took prophecy seriously. Unlike you, we weren't expecting a rapture but we did expect a different ending.

"I don't know if you knew this, but from the earliest of Mormon history, we felt a kinship with America in particular because we were taught that Jesus came here and preached to the American Indians in the Book of Mormon. We were also taught that the U.S. Constitution is a God-breathed document just like the Bible and Book of Mormon. About 200 years ago Joseph Smith prophesied that there would be a time when the Constitution was hanging by a thread and a Mormon President would come in to save the day and bring revival.

"We had no idea how critical the actual nation of Israel was to prophecy. We looked on Israel as a self-fulfilling prophecy - something so many wanted to see so it just happened, but with no more significance than that. We can read as well and as we reread Isaiah, Daniel, Revelations and other prophecy, we began to see another scenario unfolding - one we had not been taught. It turned out that a Mormon President did not come to the rescue. Things continued to get worse in the Middle East and around the world. The President signed a treaty with Israel and defended her to the hilt and continued his war of liberation and conquest around the world. The rebuilt Temple, the President's assassination and rebirth or whatever you want to call it - came out of no where. When he declared himself to be God and insisted we take the "Mark", we knew it was time to leave. We were camping at the time, waiting to see what was going to happen.  So that's our story.  How was your journey?"

We shared our story and how we were completely deceived and taken by surprise by events as well. Unlike them, we were completely unprepared in terms of what to do. We ended up here because a survivalist friend knew this place next to yours was available. We chatted some more but it was getting late so we said good night and agreed to continue the discussion later in the week.


 

November 26  The Swap Meet

The morning began in our new farm house. We were so thankful that we had made it out of the city and could hardly believe we got through the checkpoint. We were thankful for Thor making it possible to get here safely. The night before, we learned from our Mormon neighbors that this little group of farm houses had been built by friends from their church. Unfortunately, they were not one of the few to get away when the round ups began.

This farm-house is much like theirs. More of it is underground than above. The part above ground is little more than a facade and looks like an abandoned building. Below ground is where all the real living takes place - bedrooms, baths, kitchen, family room, storage and so forth. The farming part appears unkempt although the fruit and nut trees are bearing, the vegetable gardens are hidden in camouflaged green-houses for year round growing. The authorities would have to trip on it to realize what it was. We also have a windmill for water and a few solar panels that look like roof tiles to provide just enough electricity to light the downstairs and run the refrigerator. We also have a diesel generator which we use sparingly.  It is vented through an old chicken coop in our effort to keep the heat signature down.

We have lots of mouths to feed. It looks like we will be eating a lot of squash, potatoes, sweet potatoes and the like. Fortunately, a loose organization of groups has already formed and a market exchange of sorts has been organized. It is an underground exchange consisting of survivalists, splinter groups of Jews, Mormons Christians, libertarians and others - all who strongly objected to the "Mark". We each have something to trade that the other group needs. In addition we have two doctors who will be in great demand. So a system of barter was set up - value for goods and services along with some gold and silver coin - the only "currency" universally accepted.

We took the day off to get organized and inventory our supplies. Now that we are settled in our new digs, we realize that we need things - we were a pretty good sized group to feed. Thor told us about a clandestine swap/barter meet.  Since we can't "buy or sell" we can trade with one another.  Thor told us to inventory what we have to trade and what we need.

Every second of every day our greatest fear is that we will get caught, so we are paranoid about meeting in a big group.  Thor assured us he has checked out the groups as well as he can.  He will provide armed security and we will meet in a neutral location. 

We don't know who to trust. Forgive me if I seem paranoid. One or more of the groups could have a spy.  Thor took elaborate measures to make sure it was safe and secure. First we have a courier collect lists from each group (only the courier knows their locations and has a cyanide implant in case he or she is caught) as to what they will bring to the "market". Each group selects two people to attend market day. They are collected just before the meeting and taken to the location. Our group selects Brett and Joe to go shopping for us.

They arrive at an old barn and are surprised that it is full of 80 to 100 people. It is hard to believe that this may represent up to 50 groups of resistors. Everyone has brought what they have to offer and the fun begins. How do you value 50 ears of corn with a doctor's visit, a piece of silver, ammunition or fresh squash? Negotiations get underway with little fanfare or discussion. Everyone is absolutely terrified to be in such a large group, not knowing if the Antichrist's storm troopers will come barging in any minute to arrest everyone.

Fortunately, the trade goes off without incident. Maybe paranoia pays off. Only 90 minutes later, we scuttle off to our respective hideouts. We can only hope the next exchanges go as well. We traded some coins for seeds, some potatoes and squash and other food to get us by for a while - bags of flour and rice, powdered milk, etc. We also agreed to let our doctors treat some of the folks at an impromptu clinic at a to-be-disclosed location that will be set up with appropriate security.

How much longer can we survive this way? What are our next steps? We were shocked that the dissident community was so large - the hundred attendees represented thousands of people. Time to get on with our job. More on that tomorrow.


 

November 27.  How Do We Go On?

Our shopping trip yesterday was risky but interesting. As we sat around breakfast this morning, we were both thankful and surprised that there were so many other groups like ours in hiding. It also occurred to us that although there are many reasons to refuse the Mark, not all understand how important it is to avoid the Mark and learn what God is doing in all this.

The fact that we discovered so many people and groups when Brett and Joe went to the swap meet was encouraging. There are still many people who resist the Mark. There may be a way for us to survive longer with each other's help. We have to walk a fine line between reaching out and being careful. We have a target on our backs, so how can we reach out to others and protect our group at the same time?

Now that we are beginning to read and understand Bible prophesy we know the second half of the "Great Tribulation" we are in will last for three and a half years (just like the first half). Wow! Three and a half years is a long time to survive when the whole world is looking for you and you can't buy, sell, work or get caught. Our goal isn't necessarily to survive. We are here to be light and life to those who are still undecided, who have refused the Mark of the Beast. We hope we make it through to the end when Jesus returns - the Second Coming we have long anticipated.  The chances are small, but the longer we last, the more sticks we can put in the wheels of the Beast's machine, the more people we can snatch out of Hell's fire.

We need to share with people the significance of the Mark. Now we know it isn't about a vaccination against a pandemic. Revelation 13:17 says that if you don't have the Mark, you can't buy or sell, but there is more to it than that.  Those who take the Mark become devoted followers of the Antichrist and worship the Beast (Revelation 14:11).  They also receive the "Mark of his name and worship the Beast and his image."  Every man, woman and child has to choose who they will worship, who they will follow - Satan or God. In the past people could always ride the fence, not knowing that a no decision for God's free gift of life in Jesus Christ is a choice. Revelation 19:20 speaks of a final judgment for those who receive the Mark.

Suddenly life has become pretty simple. We don't have to worry about work, education, paying bills, cleaning the house, mowing the lawn, getting the kids to soccer, saving for college and retirement, the next vacation.  All we have to worry about is surviving and the dividing line between life and death and getting people onto the "life" side.

So as a practical matter, how do we go on? We sat around in our farm basement this morning and strategized. We decided we would ask the messenger from Thor's group (because he knew the location of the different groups) if he would help us contact the various groups. We would send out two people at a time to go to a group (location of their choice) and meet with them. Our goals is simple - establish a relationship with other groups, share our perspective and see how we can help and learn from one another. One thing we discovered in our limited contact with outsiders like us, is that everyone knows something monumental is up and they are looking for answers. They are running for their lives, not knowing where they are going or why. We felt God had given us some answers so we offered Him our lives that others might be saved. 
 

November 28  Self Defense

We met with Thor and his people to plan our approach. We wanted to meet with other groups and do an initial analysis of their assets and liabilities and find out what there understanding of the tribulation is. Thor agreed to make someone available to set up the meetings and vouch for our people (some groups were a little trigger happy - shoot first and ask questions later).

We worked the rest of the day on how we would conduct the inventory.  We would have to keep it low key and casual so they wouldn't think we were being nosey or wanted to rip them off.  We would start by sharing our history and hearing their story.  How long do they think this will last?  Where did they see it going?  Once we told them we thought it would go on for three years plus and get pretty hairy toward the end, we hoped that would open up the discussion.

This also brought up the issue of other groups contacting us.  Some are good.  Others are just gangs of thugs with lots of guns seeking to loot and pillage. We told Thor we aren't into killing people so what can we do?  He suggested shotguns with buckshot - a great deterrent - but non-lethal (if far enough away).  He recommended a Remington reduced recoil 8 pellet.  Our idea is deterrence.   If the gangs see we are armed they will most likely leave us alone.  With a shotgun, you don't have to be the best shot in the world and anyone in front of you will feel rather uncomfortable.  In a pinch, Thor could send reinforcements.

Now don't get me wrong, we are more than willing to reach out and help anyone in any way we can, but there are lawless gangs roaming around stealing and killing at random.  In times like this some people don't act in a civilized way, especially if they are on the run from the government as well.  We realize we need to keep a low profile all the way around.

Anyway, back to the mission.  After much discussion we decided on teams and discussed the schedule with Andy, the guide/lookout Thor was loaning us.  Andy would take us to the meeting place and wait outside.  We had two way radios so we could stay in touch.  He was going to set up the first meeting for tomorrow morning and Max and Claire would be the first to go out. 


 

November 29  Meeting With Strangers

Max and Clair were looking forward to their first meeting.  We have no way of really knowing how many people have refused the Mark.  We estimate that in the first three and a half years, we may have lost about 20 to 30 percent of the people to starvation and violence caused by disruptions in the food supply, gangs, looting, etc.  Somewhere around three quarters of the people remaining were "vaccinated."  We may have lost another 10 percent to the pandemic isolation centers - basically death camps people are taken to and never heard from again. That leaves about 10 to 20 percent of the population at least here in America who refuse to "take the Mark of the Beast."

We are amazed that those who oppose the takeover of their soul are such a diverse group of people - politically running the gambit from liberal to conservative, from all walks of life, race, religion.  They seem to have one quality in common - an innate ability to see through the lies of the "Beast "and his prophets.  They have a healthy skepticism, dare to question and are willing to leave all behind.  Most people, including most Christians just stepped into it without question.  I think as we will see, the other stragglers like us followed their gut rather than the crowd.  

When we went to the barter swap meet we discovered so many like our group we realized these represent the tip of the iceberg.  We are not alone and there are millions in hiding.

This much we know.  We have less than three and a half years before the end and everything is happening as it was written.  We know we are on the brink of the most glorious event in history, the long awaited Second Coming of our Lord.  But meanwhile everyone's lives are on the line.  None of our group are worried because we know our eternal destiny. We have been called to this moment and will not likely make it to the end in this earthly body.  But most people are only vaguely aware of the titanic struggle taking place before their eyes as Satan himself tries to lay claim to as many people as possible in his last ditch effort to take over the world.

So with that here's what happened today.  The first group Thor was going to introduce us to wasn't too far away.  Walking was too slow and driving too dangerous so Andy showed up to take Max and Claire to the first group by bicycle.  The idea was to look like a work detail on their way to a farm somewhere.  It was a warm sunny day and it felt invigorating to be outside with the wind in their face.  It only took a half hour and they didn't really pass anyone other than a few people out working in their farms.  They arrived at an old barn down a dirt path off the main road.

They got off their bikes and looked around at a motley crew - some dressed in sweats, others work clothes and a few in slacks and nice shirts as if they were going to work in their office, men, women and a few older children, about 30 in all.  Andy introduced Max and Claire around and everyone seemed friendly in a guarded sort of way.  They were offered some coffee and everyone sat around on hay bales.

Max began by thanking them for their trust and hospitality.  "I appreciate how stressful this is for all of you, but somehow I think we know we need to 'hang together or hang separately' as the old saying goes.  Like you, we want to reach out to others who have refused the vaccination/Mark and see how we can help each other survive the next few years.  It may be a very scary ride. 

"Let me tell you about us just briefly.  I was a local sheriff for 22 years and my wife, Claire, was a legal secretary.  We've been on the run for about six weeks now and have linked up with some friends from church and another group we met along the way.  Two of them are doctors in case you ever have medical needs."  He shared a little more but was careful not to be too specific.  "How did you all meet - just in general, okay?"

One of them said, "I'm Paul and in my past life I was an accountant.  We all lived in the same neighborhood.  Most of us have known one another for years.  As things began to go downhill we started a neighborhood meeting and got together regularly to talk about the situation and what we would do if things got worse.  We gradually realized we were probably going to have to leave, especially when talk of a pandemic began.  Most of us sensed it was a cover story for something else and we were not about to let the government start vaccinating us.  It turned out to be a good decision as we saw what it did to those who went along.  We left a lot of good friends behind but we knew we had to get while the gettin' was good as they say."

Max asked Paul, "Do you understand what is really happening and where this is headed?"  "We have a lot of opinions," Paul said.  "Some say it's the end of the world and others think it will blow over and we will be able to go back home soon.  The fact is, we don't really know."

Max asked, "What if this is much bigger than any of us can possibly imagine?  How many of you are church goers?"  About half raised their hands.  "Did you ever study prophecy?"  A few raised their hands.  "Would it be okay with you all if I shared some things with you?"  Heads nodded.  With that Max said, "I don't want to preach or get technical with you, but everything that has happened the past few years was foretold in prophecy thousands of years ago.  And I have to tell you most of us Christians missed it too.  We were deceived as well.  Remember that first war between Israel and Syria, followed by the defense treaty between the US and Israel?  That goes back to the book of Daniel 9:27.  Yeah!  You heard about the guy in the lions' den?  That's him.  The whole scenario that followed: The wars in the Middle East, the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem, the assassination of the President, the offering in the Temple, the Mark - all of this is found in both the Old and New Testament and in great detail.  These are all events that occur in the last seven years which the Bible calls the Tribulation."

"Okay," Max continued, "What does this mean to us in a practical sense?  Well we have seen what taking the Mark does to people.  They not only become different people, but they worship the person we now call the Antichrist.  We know what happens if we are caught and what our choices are.  Now here is the hard part which may be a little easier to believe than it would have been a year ago.  There is a war going on over our souls.  Satan wants to own us and possess us.  You know what?  God wants to have a relationship with us too, but he is holy and righteous and we aren't.  That's what Christmas and Easter are all about although muddied by Santa, bunnies and all.  Putting it simply, God sent his Son to the earth and he lived a sinless life and the Father allowed Jesus to offer his life as a sacrifice for our sin.  He did this so that through what Jesus did we could know Him and have a relationship with God.  There was a big deal about rebuilding the Temple in Jerusalem.  That Temple is the likeness of man who is the real Temple, the place where God wants to dwell.  If we take the Mark, Satan comes into man and inhabits that temple - the human spirit which is that God-shaped void inside a man.  When we ask Jesus into our heart, He comes into our human spirit and fills that void.  Christianity isn't about church buildings, programs, sermons and all that.  It is about who we let in, especially now.

"This is why the Mark of the Beast issue we are all facing matters so much.  This is why you fled, leaving everything behind to avoid it.  You know what a big deal this is.  Now we may or may not make it to the end, but there is only one inoculation that will save you not just in this life but for all eternity and that is you asking Jesus to come into your heart and make your human spirit alive.  That's what "being born again" is all about.  It is receiving a new life, God's life, into you.

"After all we have been through; I know this makes a lot more sense to you.  God not only wants to know you, He has called you to stand with Him in these difficult times.  I'm not forcing anyone, but if this makes sense to you, please prayerfully consider it.  If you would like to have a relationship with God right now,  bow your head and ask Him to come into your life."  Everyone bowed their head and Max prayed, "Heavenly Father, we are afraid, more afraid than we have ever been in our lives.  We've done nothing to deserve You, but we know we are in the valley of decision and it is time to choose sides.  Jesus we choose you.  Come into our lives and fill us with joy, purpose and resolve to stand with You in these last days as you make Your home in us.  We ask this in Your name.  Amen."

There wasn't a dry eye in the group and there was a sense of great relief, a sense that the dark fear that had gripped them was chased away by a great light.  Something extraordinary just happened and they all knew it.  Max opened it up for questions and answers giving everyone a chance to talk.  One after another they shared their great relief and how it all made sense now.  They talked about how we can help one another and planned some next steps. 

Max and Claire will go back soon.


 

November 30  A Dangerous Confrontation!

This morning after breakfast, Craig and Kendra were outside playing with Noche, when suddenly, we heard the dog barking and growling like crazy.  The kids came running into the house telling us that some guys on motorcycles were coming up the driveway.  They had guns.  We called Noche into the house so he wouldn't get hurt.  Max, a couple of others and I grabbed the shotguns.  It looked like one of the biker gangs we heard about from Thor.  Max stepped out the front door and the rest of us opened the windows and covered him.  Max held his shotgun pointed down in front of him and told the bikers to turn around and leave.  Seeing the shotguns pointed at them through the windows was enough to discourage them for now so they turned around and left.  Good reason to keep our 24-hour watch and the dog close by.

After the visit from the biker gang our concern increased.  If they could find us so easily, so could the authorities.  We decided to lay low today in case they decided to return and posted guards.  Seeing our readiness may have merely intensified their curiosity.  Just in case, we alerted Thor.

Sure enough, they showed up again in the afternoon in force.  We really didn't know what to do.  We had a ham radio and codes we could use to ask Thor and his group for help.  We called him earlier and told him what had happened.  He said they would be back and he would be ready.  The biker group drove up the drive way and one of them, clad in leather and using a bull horn shouted, "Surrender now or face the consequences."  Great.  All of the sudden our shotguns looked like pea shooters compared to the array of men and guns against us.  We got on the radio to Thor who was waiting down the road.

Brett, trying to buy us some time, asked, "What exactly is it you want?"  Their leader answered, "We don't want anything in particular.  We are here to take what you have.  We only offer you your lives if you let us in."  Wow!  We had a whole group praying down in the basement.  We knew the authorities were bad but this?  We were into scaring them away but not whole scale war and killing!

With that, we heard the rumble of trucks and SUVs as Thor's small army arrived, surrounding the bikers.  Thor spoke through his own bull horn.  "Bikers, we suggest you leave and leave now and do not return.  We know where you are and will come looking for you if you do.  So get on your bikes and leave NOW"

What an answer to prayer - not a shot fired and off they went!

We couldn't thank Thor enough and asked if there was anything we could do for him.  He said some of his group could use some medical care so we sent Bill and Kathy back with him to help his group. 

It was a relief to have dodged that bullet!  It just reminded us that this is not a game and the dangers are intense!


 

December 1  A Trap is Sprung!

Today, it was Curt and Marta's turn to visit one of the groups.  Andy was to take them to meet a group of survivalists with a libertarian bent.  They didn't like government and just wanted to be left alone.  Andy drove them this time since it was too far away to walk or bike.  As usual, Andy waited outside to keep watch for any trouble.  He parked a few blocks away and found a place to hide in the bushes overlooking their compound in the mountains.  The meet was on!

We found out what happened later from Andy who rescued one of their group during the raid.  Curt and Marta were greeted somewhat coldly by the others, sensing something was wrong from the start.  They seemed friendly enough but weren't that eager to talk.  They started pumping them with questions.  Curt and Marta shared how they had started out as a group of Jewish friends who later joined with some Christians.  They told them the idea of taking a Mark just didn't sit well with them because they had Holocaust survivors in their family.

The survivalists seconded that opinion.  They just didn't trust government, but didn't seem to have any major objection to the Mark or other policies of the government.  Curt and Marta didn't find them particularly open to the idea of prophecy or any supernatural events that had taken place.  They seemed to be just content to be left alone.  They were distracted and not really concentrating on the interchange.

Andy was shocked to see two SWAT Teams drive up and surround the compound, but rather than busting in as he would expect, they knocked and entered simultaneously through the front and back doors with guns trained on Curt and Marta.  At first they were shocked and then it suddenly dawned on them.  They had walked into a trap.  The "survivalists" worked with the government to locate dissidents - and were, in fact, paid in food and supplies every time they made a successful capture.

Once Curt and Marta realized there was no escape and no help, they calmly looked at their hosts and said, "We knew this would probably happen one day.  We didn't expect to live through this.  Our hope is that we are no longer just children of holocaust survivors, but we have found our Messiah so now we have a reason to live and die.  We spent most of our lives going through the motions of our religion, not recognizing that it wasn't about works or traditions but about a relationship with our God through our Messiah Jesus.  Our hope is that you find Him, especially before you are "Marked" as one of Satan's followers because that will surely be your end once they are through with you."

With that, Andy saw Curt and Marta being led out to one of the SWAT SUVs and thrown roughly into the back.  Andy knew they would be taken before the "court" and given the choice of the "Mark" or the guillotine followed by a hasty cremation.  He couldn't help but wonder what gave them such strength to endure such an end.  He waited hiding in the bushes a few minutes when a young lady came out the front door crying.

Andy called to her and she came over.  That is when he found out what exactly happened.  The girl's name was Aisha, a 20 year old black girl.  She looked up at Andy and said, "I should have known better.  I was raised in church and got saved as a little girl.  Once I went to college I got in with this politically correct bunch of liberals who seemed to accept a little black girl from North Carolina.  I thought I found acceptance and didn't need a religious crutch any more.  Now I realize I need God in my life and I just can't be a part of betraying people like that to the Government.  Would you please take me back with you to their people?"

You can imagine our sorrow and surprise as Andy came back early without Curt and Marta, but with this darling young lady.  We immediately suspected what happened and stopped what we were doing to pray for strength for Curt and Marta as they went through their final trial on earth.  We knew they would soon be in a better place.  We rejoiced that we now had Aisha.  She told us how touched she was by their simple testimony and realized she didn't belong with the turn coat survivalists and fled with Andy.  She asked if she could please stay with us.

Andy was touched by what had happened and even more committed than ever to help us reach out to those who would listen.  He would warn Thor of the threat this traitorous group represented to everyone's safety and they discussed a plan to warn others to steer clear of them.


 

December 2  Meetings with Family and Thor's Group

Today we got everyone together to talk about what had just happened and what our next steps were going to be.  The day before yesterday we were surrounded by a biker gang and yesterday lost two of our family.  We felt it was time to sit down and evaluate where we were going as a group. 

Avi led off the meeting with prayer for Curt and Marta, thanks for Aisha coming and a general thanks for life and one another.  Avi said, "Brett, Gideon and others have been talking about our situation.  Fortunately, we have a well disguised compound and have been able to keep our location somewhat secret.  We're not sure how the bikers found us, but the threat from Thor's group seemed to be keeping them at bay for now.  The group Curt and Marta met with yesterday didn't know where we live so - so far, so good.  We need to be alert for signs. 

"Noche is very good at quietly alerting us when any of the beast people are near by.  He has a tremendous sixth sense for their presence.  So let's try and stay here as long as possible.  The green-houses will produce food all winter, and the fruit trees will give a good harvest if we make it to next summer.  Chickens seem to be multiplying, so we have meat and eggs.  We have no other larger animals but could probably barter for one.  Fortunately, the Mormons who set this place up stored plenty of dry goods, dry milk, flour, beans and stuff like that.  How do you all feel?  Should we stay here?"

There seemed to be general consensus to stay.  "The other thing we need to consider," continued Avi, "is our real purpose here.  God has brought two groups - one Christian and one Jewish to stand together and tell whoever will listen that there is a reason for the craziness we find ourselves in.  At the same time, we realize that our long term survival is not good.  What happened yesterday will happen again to some, if not all of us here.  We thought that maybe we should split our group, especially if it gets any bigger, so we can't all be taken at once.  Our prayer isn't to necessarily avoid the certain death we await, but to extend our time and testimony as far as we can."

There were a score of amens, right on's and so forth from everyone present - even from our "kids", Craig and Kendra, who are now young adults, having been forced to grow up quickly since their parents were taken, but their faith is strong and their willingness to do whatever is necessary is evident.

Brett continued, "We are thankful for the support we are getting from Thor and his group and Andy is eager to continue to take us around to meet different groups.  As a result of the "swap meet"/barter session we had the other day, we have agreed to let Bill and Cathy put on a clinic at a neutral location on Saturday.  Thor's group will provide security and protection.  Other groups will bring things we had put on our wish list - things we need that they may have to barter.  We will also share with Thor and several of our people will go with them.  Unfortunately, we don't have much in the way of medicine or drugs so we will just do our best with what we have.  Our docs have been studying up on natural remedies.  They can also do minor surgery, deliver babies and give advice." 

We continued to talk about "family" issues - trying to match interest and talents with the various jobs that needed to be done - everything from cleaning, to taking care of the gardens, cooking, etc.  We are careful to keep most of our activity either hidden behind the buildings where the green-houses and gardens are, but most of our living is confined to the huge basement compound below the farm house.  We also realize how important it was to keep a 24-hour watch with an efficient warning system for everyone no matter where they are on the property.

This is not a game.  Authorities are looking for stragglers like us.  Any stranger could be an informant.  Fortunately, our dog has a good sense of a person's character and intent so we submit strangers to the "smell test" quite literally.  Patrols are not common out here, but neither are people since most have been placed in work camps where they do their assigned jobs.

We thought it might be a good idea to have another meeting with Thor and his group, so we set that up for later in the day.  Laura, who came from Thor's survivalist group, and I went. When we arrived, we expressed our profound thanks for their help giving Andy as a guide and for answering our SOS for the biker gangs.  We discussed security and supply issues, and Thor asked if we could stay for dinner.

After a chicken dinner and pumpkin pie, we sat around in his big living room and started talking about the situation and where it all was heading. This time, we didn't have to go into the prophetic background so much, but addressed their skepticism about Christianity since they saw many Christians support the Antichrist and turn on their own brothers and sisters.  This was very confusing to them.  How could Christians turn on one another?  What kind of religion was this?  How could they support the Antichrist?

Laura and I made a pretty good team, taking turns explaining things to them.  All religion is little more than a moral code and there is no relationship with God.  This can be true of Christianity as well.  Christians can go through the motions but there is nothing real in their lives.   They were cultural Christians who went to church on Sunday and that was about it.  Many of the real ones were in deep deception as well.  As a matter of fact, most of us were at one time.  We thought the Antichrist was God's gift to Israel until he turned on it and us as well.  We had been sure we would rapture and not have to experience this tribulation.

Christians may have had a life change by being "born again", but many didn't know how to nurture their relationship with God.  They proceeded to learn to act like Christians, like the people around them, steeped in doctrines and Bible teaching but with no real relationship with the Lord personally beyond their "salvation" experience.  This was so common.  The pastor did the hard work and spouted the "truth" from the pulpit every week and they were told what was right and wrong, what to believe and what not to believe.  

A real Christian experiences a noticeable change in his life.  He knows he is a phony, a fake and a failure and will never measure up.  He needs a new life, a real personal relationship with God that will change him or her from the inside out.  This is a process, an intimate relationship that grows every day as the new Christian pours his heart out to God and God fills the empty places with His life.  True Christianity is not about religion, forms, doctrines and rules.  It has nothing to do with church although there is a natural drawing to others with the same experience.  It is about Him in us.  The Holy Spirit guides us into truth and relationship with God and one another.  It has nothing to do with services or programs, Bible schools or seminaries.  You either have that relationship or you don't, and in times like this the ONLY thing that keeps you from the world system and protects you is knowing Him!  The only thing that protects you from deception is learning to hear His still small voice.

I told them how much we appreciate their stand against the state.  "This problem isn't ever going to go away.  Life will never return to normal.  Remember the first time we shared?  Everything up until now was prophesied to happen thousands of years ago and that includes those events of the next three years and some months.  We know what will happen.  This is a lot bigger than us.  It is a titanic struggle between the forces of evil and good, Satan and God.  We can't be neutral and we will eventually choose one side or the other.

"Satan offers the false hope of a kingdom ruled by the Antichrist.  We see what that is producing.  God is offering to share His life with us, to make us a part of His family and His kingdom.  Thor and the rest of you, whether we live or die we will either come out of this on the other side with God for all eternity or suffer eternal separation from God.  It is not that hard, but the decision is yours.  God has a purpose for you.  He has something very important for us to do and you can join us."

We sat around and talked some more and answered some of their questions.  Laura shared her perspective as one who understood the survivalist group since she had been a part of it.  She said, "We had the right idea to stand against the Beast state, but we didn't see how it was a part of a larger conflict.  I know we are afraid and fighting for our lives, but once you ask the Lord into your life, you will know and experience His life so that no matter what happens to us, this isn't the end."

As Andy drove us back to our compound, Laura and I talked and talked.  I'll share that experience with you tomorrow.


 

December 3   About Laura

I guess it was inevitable that Laura and I would be thrown together.  Other than the kids and Dana, we were all couples except for Laura and I, not that I'm looking for anyone given our extreme circumstances.  I just lost my wife, Jane, and two children not too long ago. But we are in most unusual circumstances. 

It was nice getting to know Laura.  I'm 35 and she is 30, never married.  Prior to the day that changed our lives, she had been living with a guy in the survivalist compound.  Laura grew up in a small town near Montgomery, Alabama.  Her dad ran the local pharmacy and her mom was a teacher like me.  She was raised in a small Southern Baptist Church.  She accepted the Lord as her Savior as a young girl, but took church for granted growing up.  It was just something the family did on Sunday.  She gave the Lord lip service as they say.  She felt him tugging at her heart now and then, but she was a busy young girl.

All Laura could think about was getting out of small town America so upon graduating from high school, she got a scholarship to Duke University.  Once free from family she was like most kids - experimented with drugs, sex and alcohol, but spent most of her time studying forestry.  She loved the outdoors.  Upon graduation, she got a job with the Forest Service near here.  She met a group of survivalists headed by Thor and ended up getting more involved in what they were doing.  Thor was convinced the government was getting too powerful and stomping all over the Constitution.  People needed to defend themselves from the government overreach.

A couple of things happened at about the same time.  In 2012-2013, record breaking solar storms assaulted the earth's atmosphere.  This resulted in massive "blackouts" across the country.  Entire grids were out for months at a time.  In the places most affected, grocery stores emptied within a matter of hours and shortly after that, looting and pillaging began in earnest.  It took months to reestablish order.  The fear of terrorism was already high whether local or foreign.  Now government had a carte blanche to do whatever they wanted in the name of security.

In 2013, war broke out in the Middle East between Syria and Israel.  Shortly after that, the President signed a defense treaty with Israel.  Any future war would be led by America.  Talk about stirring a hornet's nest!  The rest of the Middle East geared up for war to implement their final solution - wiping Israel off the map!  When the war known prophetically as the Gog-Magog broke out, Islamic countries such as Turkey, Iran, Egypt and others came against Israel, and America went nuclear.  The fear of terrorism went to a new high in America.

By then, there were checkpoints on major highways going in and out of cities.  People were expected to carry identity papers and everyone was subject to search.  This drove people like Thor, Laura and the rest of their group deeper into the wilderness as their paranoia of everything governmental escalated.

Meanwhile Laura had hooked up with Jason, one of Thor's friends.  Living with Jason was a long way from the way she was raised and Laura didn't feel that good about it but, oh well, everyone was doing it.  She didn't really love Jason in a marrying sort of way, but did enjoy his companionship.

Once it was announced that everyone had to be vaccinated and get the Mark, Laura couldn't help but wonder if that was the "Mark of the Beast" she had studied in Sunday School years ago.  How could that possibly be, thought Laura?  We should have raptured by now!  Laura couldn't help but wonder if this really was the end?

The first night Thor and his group met with us we shared with them our interpretation of these events.  Laura was touched by God and rededicated her life to the Lord. She felt she needed to do something radical.  That's when she asked Thor if she could stay with our group.

Laura proved invaluable.  Not only did her forestry background give her knowledge of animal husbandry and agriculture, she knew which plants were useable and which weren't.  She also was a handy outdoorswoman who could build a fire, a shelter, hunt, fish and do just about anything else you can imagine!

Until last night our relationship just consisted of small talk, but on the way home I was finally able to talk about losing my family and how I felt about that.  If it weren't for my faith, I don't know how I would have gotten through it.  We talked about our lives, our hopes, dreams and the end of the world. We sat in the back of Andy's car and cried and prayed together.


 

December 4  Why Didn't We Get It?

As I look back over the past few years, I realize that very few people, including me, saw what was coming and I ask myself why?  Why did we miss it?  Why were we so predisposed to believe everything we were told whether in the news or the pulpit?  It seems Christians are too trusting and not prone to critical thinking lest they be considered rebellious to authority.  The answers are spoon fed from the pulpit by experts who have studied for years.

There are plenty of critical thinkers among the libertarians and survivalists.  They don't always trust what they are told.  They readily question authority.  They question the conventional explanations of the pundits and bureaucrats. They may be too conspiratorial in their thinking, but that may not be all that bad.

Most Christians are just going through the motions.  I know I didn't have a close enough relationship with the Lord to understand what was happening.  Dana saw it coming, but she is a young college student who has an open mind and heart and hasn't been around long enough to be taught all the pat answers.  I guess that is the big difference.  Once most of us are "taught" something whether in school, church or just something we read or hear, that becomes our "truth" and it is very hard to move us from a position once we have taken it.  We sift everything through the filter of our background and the beliefs of those around us.  The best example is the way American Christians cling to the pre-tribulation rapture doctrine.  It practically became a tenant of the faith as convoluted as it was, but few dared to question it but steadfastly defended it.

The government is certainly trying to get us to see things their way.  The statistics are always interpreted in their favor.  We were told debt was good - debt drives the economy and banking system.  Not to worry. Three quarters of our economy was our great consumerism!  Of course debt collapsed the entire European Union and nearly brought America to its knees.  The church was always trying to convince us that we had to believe in the government, to be a light on the hill, to change government, to extend our influence in the world.  The church painted the Democrats as the bad guys and the Republicans as the good guys - pro-life, family, private enterprise, etc.

The hard lessons we learned recently are: 1) the system (whether government, education or church) is designed to deceive and brainwash us; 2) the whole world lies in the evil one - this is Satan's kingdom whether good or bad, right or left (we can't put our trust in the world's institutions); 3) the system changes us - we don't change the system. The same entertainment empires producing children's programming for our kids are making porn for the adults.  The schools are teaching our children to be broad and accepting of families by any definition, learning that right and wrong are situational.  There is no absolute truth.  There are many paths and they are all okay. The media bombarded every aspect and minute of our lives.

We realized too late that the government lied about war, debt, the economy, social policy, health care, and so on.  Did the church lie to us as well?  Maybe it didn't intentionally, but there is a tremendous amount of inertia in any institution like the church.  Teachings and forms are passed on from one generation to the next.  The "truths" become self-evident and accepted by all, not to be questioned.

Teachings about prophecy that originated in the 19th century were passed on clear through the 20th to the 21st century!  That is why there were so many who missed the signs.  Europe was to be the seat of the antichrist and America just had to get out of the "prophetic" way!

Over the years we saw so much strife within the church, so much worldliness, so many programs and fads, we should have learned to be more discerning.  Churches, as 501(c)(3)'s, were agents of the government, especially if they were receiving money for schools, welfare or food distribution.  The "church" was beholden to the government and an example of political correctness rather than the truth.

So here we are living in the last days and the church is asleep at the switch.  It didn't get it.  Events that are clearly foretold such as the Syrian war, the defense treaty with Israel, the Gog-Magog War, the Mark of the Beast, were missed by most Christians and Christian leaders!  The question is why? 

First, the church was caught up in the world. We were all on the treadmill.  Some churches taught things were getting better, we were already in the kingdom or the end times have been here for the past 2,000 years or, for the old line evangelical, the end times couldn't be of any real concern because we wouldn't be here (thanks to the rapture). In the here and now, the mega churches were massive marketing and entertainment organizations.  In the future end times scenario we were supposed to rapture.  Now I understand why Corrie Ten Boom said, "There are some among us teaching there will be no tribulation; that the Christians will be able to escape. These are the false teachers that Jesus was warning us to expect in the latter days."  No other doctrine in my church was more damaging to the understanding of prophecy. 

Second, church doctrine resulted in one of two scenarios: it eliminated either Israel or the church in the last days.  The more fundamental Christians promoted the idea of dispensationalism which spun out of the rapture doctrine.  The idea was that the Israel had its time up to Christ.  Then the dispensation of the church began leading up to the rapture and removal of the church.  At this time the "church dispensation" was over and Israel's was back on.  The practical effect of this doctrine is to minimize the importance of prophecy since, by definition, the church is removed prior to the tribulation when Israel takes over. 

The other effect is it removed half of God's testimony on the earth. The more socially active, liberal or emerging church, some of whom are called "dominionists", are into covenant theology (Catholics and liberal protestants), believe there will be no millennium and the church will bring in the kingdom.  The net effect of this theology is to replace Israel, say it was cut off, lost the blessing and that God is through with the Jews because they rejected Jesus.  This position takes Israel completely out of the picture.  There is no tribulation to worry about since the earth is gradually taken over by the church.  The church ushers in the kingdom.

Because of these two belief systems, neither conservative nor liberal could possibly comprehend prophecy.  The final thing that blinded the eyes of most American Christians was their failure to see any role for America in prophecy.  Either America was the exceptional nation, the light on the hill to guide the other nations to the truth, or she was seen as particularly vile and worthy of destruction.  The other reason to get rid of America was to make room for Europe to unite and fulfill its role in the last days as the Beast nation and seat of the Antichrist.  As we have seen, Europe fell into total disarray while America ended up on top, with the most powerful economy, the most powerful military and a charismatic leader capable of commanding the allegiance of the world!

Christian scholars knew full well that the final seven years kicked off with a defense treaty between Israel and the Antichrist (and the nation he represented).  They failed completely to make any connection for the reasons given above:  They were into American dominionism or the pre-tribulation rapture which means they couldn't possibly be here when the treaty was signed.  So this treaty couldn't be the one! They were so enamored with American support for Israel; they didn't see the trap that was being set for them.  They should have understood, but were too brainwashed and opinionated to even consider.  Even if they did see it, if they spoke the truth in their churches, they would be out of a job in a New York minute.  This message was way too negative!

I realize the real fault goes back to people like me, the individual Christian.  We accepted everything we were told as gospel and weren't open enough to the Lord for Him to speak to us.  I have heard since that there was a small contingent of people who kept warning Christians about the danger of the pre-tribulation rapture but I never met anyone myself.  Most of us wrote off prophecy as too complicated and too divisive and not worth our individual effort to understand.  If there was something important, our pastors would tell us.

In retrospect, we (among our group of Jews and Gentiles) see now that the real issue has nothing to do with the timing of the rapture.  It has to do with the testimony of God's peoples who are Jews and Gentiles, referred to in Revelation as the two olive trees (corporate Israel) and the two lampstands (the corporate church).  God is about to judge the world, and he needs two witnesses - two corporate peoples, both heavenly and earthly, which he is now bringing together in a marvelous way, two groups of witnesses who are willing to say, "God is right."  He has a plan.  He did everything possible to bring us into relationship with Him, and for those who are willing, to come into their lives and change them and live and love the world through them.  We are nothing but unworthy, unlovely earthen vessels.  Our testimony is that He is the treasure within.  He is the one we are willing to give our lives to as He did for us.

There is one more thing about the two witnesses.  When we speak of the great tribulation, we might also say the "great trial".  The earth is on trial.  Who do people choose?  God or Satan?  Their Creator or their own way?  In Jewish tradition no one can be convicted of a crime unless there are two witnesses.  In this case, these are God's two peoples - Jews and Christians, those chosen from the beginning to bring us the Messiah and those who accepted that Messiah.


 

December 11   The Family Divides

It's been a week since I had time to write.  We sent several people out to visit other groups.  It went well.  We were able to share our story and find a lot in common.  Our bartering is also going well.  We brought back another couple, Jack and Carol and their two grown kids, Bob and Diane - all Christians who really wanted to work with us.

Today is Sunday so we decided to just hang out and spend time with one another.  We taught our Jewish friends some songs and they taught us some as well.  We had a wonderful time worshipping and praying together. We were thankful for His presence which we all strongly felt, His protection and the opportunity He had given us to share with others.

We know we are living on borrowed time and that we are a big target so we talked about finding a second place fairly close by.  We could get together regularly but just in case the authorities came down on us, they wouldn't catch us all in one place.  Our group had grown and we have requests from others who would like to move in with us, but that would take us to over twenty people.

This is how the group will be split up..  Avi, the cantor and Helen will stay here and Avi take the lead for this group.  Joe and Etta, Karl and Jill would stay here as well as Laura and I, the two kids, Craig, Kendra and Noche the lab.  The other house will be headed by Brett, along with Max and Claire, Bill and Cathy, the two single girls, Aisha and Dana and the four new ones, Jack and Carol, Bob and Michelle.  That puts ten in the first group and eleven in the second. 

Laura talked to Thor about the possibility of another location near by.  He said there were plenty of abandoned farms around and Andy would show us a few and let us pick one.

The next day, Andy showed up early and Bill, Max and I headed out with him to look for another place.  We want to stay close enough so we can reach one another with our two-way radios but they only reach a few miles.  Walking distance would be even better but we didn't hold out much hope for finding one with a huge under ground room like this one.

It was a beautiful fall day, crisp and clear.  The leaves are gone.  It is going to get cold but fires are too much of a give away, so we are going to have to brace for the cold.  We passed through a beautiful valley in the foothills.  As we headed up the hill toward Thor's retreat in the mountains, we saw various abandoned farm-houses but they aren't that substantial and it would be difficult to hide inconspicuously.

As we made our way up hill, Andy pointed to what looks like a huge door in the side of the mountain.  Above it built into the the hill-side is a house.  There are decks in front but the house is built right into the side of the hill.  It looks like one of those sod houses people began to build during the riots.

Wow, this is really something else - a great view of the valley.  The doors are chained and locked so no one has been here for a while.  Andy brought some bolt cutters and opened the huge door down below.  We walked into a barn/storage/workshop. Inside we found tractors and other farm equipment, a generator and tons of storage.  It's only been a little over a month since we fled, but obviously whoever owned this place never made it back here.  We found food supplies, seeds, fertilizer and so forth - not sure how useful it will be, but as we go back further we discovered green-houses.  We also locate banks of storage batteries so we assumed that somewhere around here is either a windmill generator or solar panels.  There is a control panel with lights and gauges and the batteries are carrying a full charge.  We gained access to the main house through a staircase in the back.  The house should be cold and musty, but Max uncovered a system of pipes in the walls that are heated - again, it must be solar but he couldn't figure it out.  We went out on the front deck and the view is fantastic.  The only windows are in the front since the rest of the house is literally set in the hillside.  At the back we saw a tunnel with a heavy steel door.  We disengaged the bolt and went outside to a large parking lot which is how they get supplies in and out.  It leads to a road somewhere beyond.  The walls are thick and look like adobe, but that is just fancy plaster covering foam blocks with reinforced steel and cement poured down the middle.

I remember reading about this type of structure, but this is the first one I have ever seen.  This will be ideal for us.  There is a great view below and we are just a few miles from the rest of our group going out west, and Thor who is just another ten minutes up the mountain.  This will be ideal.  There are four bedrooms, with a bunk-house where the three single girls can stay, a small bedroom  for Bob and rooms for Brett and the two couples.  There is a great room so that the entire family from down below and quite a few others could get together.  This is very cool.  The sod room should protect us from aerial surveillance.

The more we explored, the more we appreciated the thought and planning that went into this compound.  Whoever built it had the forethought to make it as energy efficient as possible.  Somewhere out there are panel arrays. There is plenty of water from a well and a septic tank.  The amazing thing is the system of pipes throughout the walls that are used for heating or cooling.  The generator is just for backup in case there is an extended period of clouds and rain. 

We couldn't have asked for more.  There is room for expansion both here and our farm down below.  We are sure we will need the space. Our mission is to share with as many people as possible the greatness of our God in the midst of this trouble.  People who would have slammed the door on us a few years ago, welcome us with open arms, and listen intently.  Every now and then, there will be people like Laura, Jack and Carole and their kids who want to join us in this testimony.  Each visit turns into follow-up visits as each group wants a better understanding of the real life of a Christian and the mission to which they have been called.


 

December 14  The Word Spreads

We took the next few days to get moved and settled.  We continued scheduling meetings during the week.  On Wednesday morning Brett and Dana headed back into town to meet with one of the groups we met at the swap/barter meet.  They live in an abandoned building that looks like it had once been a group home.  They spread a special foil up in the attic to reflect infrared devices used by helicopters.  Foil was also draped across the front of the house inside so that patrols going by wouldn't detect people inside.  Fortunately, there is a full basement where most of the activity takes place.  This is quite a sprawling complex, and there are about 40 people, including 10 children. 

The house has an institutional kitchen, solar electricity from voltaic cells installed on the roof near the rear of the facility.  This powers batteries and produces enough electricity to run a water pump, a few appliances and the refrigerators.  One of the group owned a camping store so when he saw what was about to happen, he moved all of his inventory into the basement.  They have great supplies to barter.  Another member worked at a nursery and a couple of years ago began to buy seed, fertilizer and gardening equipment - again great stuff for bartering.  They have a lot of mouths to feed.  Fortunately, they had time to prepare so, their compound is in good shape.

The group is made up of young couples and their children.  They met in a home schooling coop, and one thing led to another as they discussed the needs of their children.  Some of them were young Christians but more of the "purpose driven," soccer mom variety.  They had been brought up on the pabulum of Christian teaching - some of the basics you might say, but without a lot of substance.  They were more upset with the direction the country had taken, and decided to get ready just in case something bad happened.

Brett and Dana laid out the prophecies and events that led up to the exodus.  They discussed the events of the past three and a half years and what we had to look forward to for the next three and a half.  The reaction was becoming more and more typical as they looked at the big picture and their place in it.  They looked at Brett and Dana intently asking with their eyes, "So what do we do?"

Dana shared the next steps.  First, they needed to ask the Lord into their hearts if they hadn't done so, and second, give their lives, families and future to Him no matter what happens.  Third, they needed to take some time to get ready so they could go out and share with other groups they had contact with.  Brett and Dana prayed with them and shared some more throughout the afternoon.  They had lots of questions and concerns, but Brett and Dana did a great job laying it out.

John, the leader of the group, made a surprising request.  "Would you or someone from your group be willing to move in with us and work with us so we can learn quickly and be as effective as possible?  We appreciate everything you have shared and realize that time is short.  We need as much help as we can get.  Brett, we could use someone like you who is mature and can work with the adults.  And Dana, we see you are wise way beyond your years.  Maybe you could work with our young people and children.  We want to be ready.  We have plenty of room for you to stay here and would love to work with you."

They were surprised by the request but could see the wisdom in it.  They told them they would check with their group and see what they thought.

Once they got back to our little farmhouse we got the group together, and Brett and Dana shared what happened, including their request that we send help.  Everyone thought it was a great plan.  Dana and Brett were more than willing to go.  We talked about how this model could be expanded to other groups as the need arose.  Why hadn't we thought of it first?  It just goes to show we don't know it all and really need one another.

The only thing we knew was that this was our job. We were in the midst of a life and death struggle to reach out and touch as many people as possible, to equip as many as possible.  These may be the "worst of times" but let me tell you, they are also turning out to be "the best of times."  Most people who decided to not take the Mark of the Beast knew their life would never be the same again.  They needed a reason to live and die if need be.  Fear was gone and the sense of God's presence and anticipation for what He was going to do overshadowed everything.  The more we saw His plan unfold, the more excited we became!  What glory lay before us no matter what may happen!


 

December 18  A Strategy Meeting

Events are moving fast.  It was time for a meeting of all the groups we are in contact with.  We are now sending out several teams a day to meet with various groups in the area.  The response is incredible.  Christians are coming back to the Lord and new ones are coming to Him every day.  Talk about revival.  I guess the old saying about there being no atheists in foxholes is true. Our prospects aren't good, but our spirits are high!  Today is Sunday so we all get together for praise and food in our new sod home.

So far we aren't having any more losses to patrols.  Thor is handling security very well.  His intelligence is good and knowledge of back roads the best.  For the most part, he is able to avoid roadblocks.  We have an old flatbed similar to the ones the patrols use to transport work crews so they wave us through.

This afternoon the strategy session includes representatives from each group we have been visiting, plus both of our original groups.  Thor is providing security during the meeting which is being held in a forest location not too far from our sod house in the hills and Thor's outpost farther up the mountain.  There will probably be more than fifty people in all - quite a risk considering.  Thor is in charge of establishing meeting points and escorting people up the hill.

It is a crisp, clear fall day.  The leaves have fallen and there is a chill in the air as we approach our first Christmas on the run.  As I sit close by writing, our lab stands wagging his tail greeting people as they came up the trail.  Actually, he is also giving them the "smell test" just to make sure no spies are sneaking in.  So far, so good.

In spite of the danger we feel it is important because there are a lot of things to consider - security, survival and testimony, and we need to pool our resources and intelligence.  We need to talk about security - what new measures the Antichrist forces are taking to discover us and what we can do to avoid them.  Survival is going to be huge as time goes on.  It is already getting down to what we can produce ourselves since there is little left to find.  It is easier said than done to grow food or have animals and stay hidden. And finally we come to "testimony."  Most realize that we have a tremendous message of hope, and the majority who hear respond.

We have a huge job helping people jump start their relationship with the Lord.  It must be a lot like the New Testament Church in that regard.  People come to Him wholeheartedly, without reservation or distraction.  There is no point in keeping a foot in both worlds, especially now that Satan's world is exposed for the empty shell that it is.

Avi has become the main facilitator for all the groups.  We began with prayer and everyone entered in with short, real, heartfelt praises and requests.  Avi opened it up to testimonies and one person after another stood up to share the miracles they have experienced.  Here is an example. 

Sheri tells us she is a nurse and housewife caught up in life like everyone else.  "I had given up on church.  It was irrelevant to our lives.  We were going to be successful and give our children the best life we could.  Our oldest was beginning to apply for college admission.  We saw the economy take a nose dive, the solar storms, electrical outages, riots, looting, and wars.  As the government took control, we became more concerned.  They came and took my husband's hunting rifles.  They went through our house and inventoried it.  As a nurse, I was already concerned with vaccines, food and water supply, not to mention safety, so when the word went out that everyone needed to be vaccinated, I knew something wasn't right.  We had no credible evidence of a pandemic at our local hospital.  My husband and I gathered up what we could and drove up to my parent's cabin.  We had no idea we were leaving our homes, jobs and lives behind and there was no turning back.  We felt completely lost and realized the cabin would not be safe for much longer.  We ran into Thor and he took us to a small group of survivors like us.  We would sit around and talk about what had happened and where this was going.

"One afternoon, Joe and Etta showed up.  They could see we were floundering so they asked if we would mind listening to their story.  They laid things out clearly and suddenly it all began to make sense.  The more they talked, the more we felt something happening.  They shared about how God had a plan and had called and chosen each one of us to know Him, be filled by His life and given a reason to live.  'What do you have to lose and what do you have to gain,' asked Joe? 'We are just a bunch of head strong humans who think we can handle life on our own, but our Creator wants to know us, to fill us, to love us and give us His life.  Even though our prospects don't look good, God will make the next months, weeks or days the best days of your life, filled with purpose and excitement.  The alternative is a life without God, possible capture and either the Mark or death.  I'm not here to scare you, but let's talk about it.'  A long discussion ensued.  We repented and asked Jesus to come into us.  The presence of God had come down upon us.  We cried for sorrow and joy.  We talked about next steps and Joe and Etta agreed to move in with us for a couple of weeks.  What a blessing for us to have the honeymooners with us."

Several others shared similar stories.  Finally Avi said, "It is incredible to hear your stories.  Fortunately we will have eternity to sit down and enjoy the rest.  But now we need to get to the agenda and the first item is security.  Thor, you have the best handle on what is happening in the region.  What can you share with us?"

Thor stood up, an imposing military figure, straight, broad shouldered and powerful.  "Well, folks I must admit this is not exactly what we have been planning on for the past 15 years.  We knew something was coming down, but we also see now that this is not a physical battle that can be won.  There is no way we can ultimately stand against the forces of the Antichrist.  It is a spiritual win and we will be forever indebted to Avi, Brett, Joe, Gideon and the others for showing us the end game.

"Fortunately, I don't think the Beast's forces have a good idea how many of us are in hiding.  There has been too much chaos to keep track.  Yes, he has patrols and helicopters, but these are militia - not regular forces. The regular forces are out "keeping the peace" or making war around the world, depending on your perspective.  The forces are also busy keeping the farms and factories going so they don't starve and freeze to death either.  It is interesting to see that they are caught up in survival just as we are.  They have the numbers, but the further removed we are from "D" Day which you Christians refer to as the Abomination of Desolations, the less we appear on their radar.  If they pull back forces from around the world, we will be in real trouble.  We will really be out gunned by a huge professional force.  But for now, security isn't our big problem."

Avi said, "That brings us to the second item on the agenda, survival.  We are coming into the winter, so our gardens aren't going to do us much good except for those who have green-houses.  There are range cattle here in the foothills, some chickens and sheep.  We need to update our inventory of who has what and continue with swap meets to barter between groups.  We also can send out some agricultural advisors (a fancy word for experienced farmers) to help the various groups establish gardens, and green-houses and learn how to rotate chickens through the land, and maximize egg production and so forth. We need to secure livestock so that they remains as hidden as possible, especially considering that the military will have helicopters looking around rural areas trying to register heat signatures on their infrared.  That means securing them at night in sod covered pens."  We discussed many other things and inventoried our resources and needs.

"The third item on the agenda is testimony.  So far, the resistance (those who refused the Mark) has been incredibly open to the good news of Jesus.  We need to redouble our efforts to expand our reach to other groups.  For those keeping track, we have gone through the six seals of Revelation 6:  What is known as the four horsemen of the apocalypse: 1) the white horse - conquest without firing a shot (something we saw the Antichrist do early on), 2) the red horse making war around the world, 3) the black horse of economic collapse, 4) the pale horse of death by war, famine and pestilence; 5) false prophets rising and the persecution of the saints even by the church 6) the Abomination of Desolations and the Mark of the Beast.  The seventh seal reveals the seven trumpets.  This will bring signs in the heaven and earth, but we will be protected - more about this later. 

"Events will accelerate as we move into the last three years of the Tribulation.  We will be called upon to be a testimony to the world - those who love not their lives even unto death.  We will redouble our efforts to reach as many people as we can.  Let us continue to stand strong together, supporting one another in any way possible."

With that, we prayed and dedicated ourselves to the task ahead.  The various groups dispersed and made their way back to their respective compounds.