Weekly Newsletter – December 7, 2020
FROM THE HEART OF DR. REXELLA VAN IMPE
WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO CHANGE?
How would you feel if you knew you could never again change anything about yourself or your life? Would you be happy with who you are, what you have, what you have accomplished, and the way things are now…from now on?
Or do you have a to-do list of improvements you’d still like to tackle in your personal life-some changes that will result in progress and growth? Chances are that you may have put off getting started simply because the familiar is more comfortable and going in new directions can be a little bewildering at first.
But someone has aptly pointed out that if we keep on doing exactly what we have been doing, we’re doomed to continue getting the same disappointing results. Which means that a little dissatisfaction from time to time may be good for you!
No one enjoys dissatisfaction, but it is not always bad. Without it, we probably wouldn’t be motivated to change, so we wouldn’t grow. And if we didn’t grow, we would atrophy.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking that satisfaction is the same thing as smugness. Smugness is a sort of self-satisfaction which is not true satisfaction at all. On the contrary, self-satisfaction breeds apathy, pride, and a holier-than-thou attitude. It is a work of the flesh, not a fruit of the Spirit.
At least one kind of dissatisfaction is both beneficial and desirable. Check out Paul’s words in Philippians 3:12-14-Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus (emphasis added).
Room to grow
In this passage, Paul affirms that he did not feel he had arrived at a point of perfection. He was, in a sense, dissatisfied. He knew there were things he could do better. He was aware of certain areas in his life that could be improved. In other words, he had room in his life to grow.
The great apostle responded to this inner feeling of need in a beautiful way. Rather than brooding over his past failures and allowing his sense of imperfection to become an excuse for depression and self-rejection, he acknowledged and accepted them. Then, refusing to abandon himself to failure, he dedicated himself more completely to his purpose of striving to be what God wanted him to be.
We need to develop the same attitude if we are ever to be truly fulfilled. We must forget our past failures and press on toward the mark. We must refuse to sink into self-pity or apathy. Above all, we must refuse to become discouraged. Real satisfaction is within reach, but it requires that we have a healthy dose of the right kind of dissatisfaction.
Signs of a life out of order
Both men and women can recognize signs of a need to get our act together and change our priorities in life. A heart in disarray can magnify itself in many ways.
Sometimes our work may suffer; our social life becomes non-existent, and even our health may deteriorate through discontent and bewilderment. Mother’s may ignore their families, and father’s may become aloof, preoccupied because of inner turmoil.
Dissatisfied enough to change
God often uses our dissatisfaction to make us the best that we can be. Surely when we’re dissatisfied with something we become more willing to change, more eager to improve. God can take our yearning to be better and, through His power working in us, begin to transform us to be more and more like He wants us to be.
I have always been slim, and I even remember a time in my teenage years when I was literally gangly. Like most teenagers, I was self-conscious and not entirely satisfied with my appearance. I thought my teeth were crooked, that I was too skinny, that everything was wrong with the way I looked.
One day I went to my wise and understanding mother who was always completely honest with me. In tears, I cried, “Mother, I think I look awful!”
“Well,” she said, “you don’t look your best, honey, but let’s work on it.” Rather than minimize my dissatisfaction, she wisely decided to use it for my benefit. First of all, she began to build up my confidence. She tried to help me see which of my features could be emphasized and which ones could be improved. She helped me realize that I could look better with a little work and determination, but she brought into focus the importance of accepting the areas that couldn’t be changed. With her tender love and wisdom, she taught me that what we are is, after all, more important than how we look.
So many women today are dissatisfied because they, too, are frustrated with their appearance. Still, instead of doing what should and can be done about it, they allow themselves to be trapped in an attitude of self-pity and despair.
Ladies, I want to encourage you to sit up, think straight, and replace self-pity with self-determination-the determination to look, feel, and be your very best!
Neva Coyle has written two best-selling books about feeling better about yourself. From a defeated, discouraged housewife who didn’t like how she looked or how the world was passing her by, she became a free woman. These books tell the story-Free To Be Thin and Living Free.
At one time or another, each of us needs to be encouraged to improve our appearance (if you don’t believe me, just ask your husband!) And for those of us who are married, this is an important consideration. Our concern serves as an indication that we still care-that we want our husbands to continue to be satisfied and happy with the choice they made. Those of you who are still single need to remember that man [does look] on the outward appearance (1 Samuel 16:7), and accept the validity of that portion of the verse.
While I still disagree with contemporary humanity’s obsession with outward appearances and insist that we must not allow outward things to control us, we must remember that they are important. It is true that “first impressions are lasting impressions.”
The central point, then, is one of attitude. If we know we have done all that we should do and can do to look and be our very best, then we are our best. Problems in this area arise only when we allow our dissatisfaction to overrule rather than help us to improve the aspects of our physical appearance that can be changed. Perhaps the entire subject can best be summarized by a familiar quote: “Lord, grant me the grace to change the things I can, to accept the things I cannot change, and the wisdom to know the difference.”
Hard work, even in the area of trying to better our appearance, is important. If we can improve ourselves by working at it, God expects us to do so. All too often we ask the Lord to give us more than we deserve simply because we are not willing to apply ourselves.
Florence Littauer has written a very down-to-earth book that every woman should read. It’s entitled, It Takes So Little To Be Above Average. The gist of her message is that we shouldn’t be so satisfied to be just average when it’s so easily within our grasp to be above average. So whether it’s dissatisfaction with your weight, your personality, your intellect, your home, your family relationships, your other relationships-set some new goals, take aim, and then go for it.
Setting goals is most essential. I learned very early in life that to succeed, a person must have goals. But above all, they must be the right kind of goals. They must be realistic and attainable. Set your personal goals so they are within reach. Then when you accomplish them, set higher ones-establish a new plateau of achievement.
Recognizing your areas of need
The key to growth, improvement, and maturity is to have a realistic picture of the deficiencies in your life. Don’t make excuses for your shortcomings, but do not be obsessed with them either. One attitude leads to pride, the other to discouragement. Both are detrimental to your growth as a person.
I’m glad my mother did not try to convince me that there was nothing wrong with the way I looked as a teenager. By telling me honestly that I could improve myself and then helping me to do it, she instilled in me a sense of self-confidence and a desire for growth. Through it, I learned to live with an accurate picture of myself, understanding both my needs and my strengths. And that is a healthy step in the right direction toward the kind of satisfaction God wants us to have.
At the beginning of this chapter, I quoted Paul’s words from Philippians 3. Obviously he never saw himself as faultless. None of us should either, for we all have shortcomings.
Most Christians tend to think of Paul as a “super saint,” and truly he was an extremely godly man. He was disciplined, dedicated, and mightily used of God.
But he was also painfully aware of his great spiritual needs. Romans 7 describes his inner struggle between flesh and the spirit. Finally, in desperation, he cried out, O wretched man that I am! (verse 24). Paul’s cry was not one of defeat, but rather the deep, heartfelt yearning of a godly man who wanted to be more godly. Far from giving up in defeat, Paul was simply using his inner dissatisfaction to spur himself on to greater victory!
This message of determination runs throughout Paul’s writings. Please notice a significant truth from his life-as he grew and matured, his sense of personal need only deepened. One would think that as a person wins new victories and attains higher goals, his sense of need would begin to diminish. Just the opposite is true. As we grow closer and closer to what God wants us to become, the more deeply we sense our shortcomings.
Paul’s life beautifully illustrates this truth. In one of his early writings (1 Corinthians), he described himself as least of the apostles (15:9). What humility for one to see himself as last in order of importance and first in order of need.
Later, Paul wrote in Ephesians, [I] am less than the least of all saints [or Christians] (3:8). Now he had demoted himself even further. Not only did he see himself as the least of the apostles, but he also placed himself at the bottom of the list of all believers.
Finally, toward the end of his life, in a letter written to Timothy, Paul described himself as the chief of sinners (see 1 Timothy 1:15). He remembered he had slaughtered hundreds of believers in his persecution of Christians in earlier days.
Thus he had moved to seeing himself as chief among sinners. Here is a man who knew the right kind of dissatisfaction-the kind that spurred him on to greater consecration and, in my opinion, to becoming one of God’s choicest servants.
I am glad for the kind of dissatisfaction that leads one to look for ways to bring about self-improvement. Like Paul, we need to cultivate this kind of dissatisfaction. We need to let it drive us to a greater dependency on the Lord. Indeed, we need to search for and cooperate with His master plan for our lives.
When the work of God is complete in us and we reflect His glory, never again will we be baffled, bewildered, or befuddled by anything life places in our pathway.
A CLASSIC MESSAGE OF HOPE FROM DR. JACK VAN IMPE
Revelation 20: 7 – 15
Verse 7: And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
Verse 8: And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.
Verse 9: And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.
This portion of Scripture has caused many people great concern. They ask, “Why should Satan be loosed for a short season? What purpose could God have in unchaining this monster after one thousand years of blessed peace?” The answer is, “The free will of man.”
All persons who enter the Millennium are redeemed people (Isaiah 60:21 and Joel 2:28). However, one must remember that procreation still takes place during this era of time because those who survived the Tribulation hour enter the Millennium with human bodies. The believers upon the thrones possess resurrected bodies and do not bear children, but the others do. Consequently, the children born during this one-thousand-year period are born with the old Adamic, or sin, nature which has been an inherent part of man ever since the fall of Adam and Eve. Many of them, of course, accept Christ as their personal Saviour, but many do not! In addition, since Satan is bound, there is little to tempt them. They simply do not face the problems and trials which have confronted mankind in past ages. Satan’s release, then, is to determine whether or not Christ is real to these children of the Millennium, or whether they have been submissive simply because He ruled with a rod of iron (chapter 19, verse 15).
The truth is revealed as millions follow the devil. Yes, even after living with the Lord Jesus Christ for ten centuries, much of mankind rebels. Verses 8 and 9 inform us that Satan deceives the nations internationally (pictured by the four corners of the earth), and gathers them together for one last battle. The army is gigantic in number…as the sand of the sea. Once again the camp of God’s people-the beloved city of Jerusalem-is surrounded, just as the armies of the Tribulation hour gathered against Jerusalem to battle (see Zechariah 14:1). Then, in an instant, God destroys them all with a devouring fire from heaven.
To whom do the names Gog and Magog refer? In Ezekiel 38 and 39, they identify Russia. Not so in verse 8. Instead, they most likely indicate the memory of past brutality-much like the names Pearl Harbor, Hiroshima, and Iraq do today. As Gog and Magog (Russia) invades Israel and comes against Jerusalem during the Tribulation hour, such an indelible impression is left upon all the world that now-one thousand years later-the details are still vivid. Thus, this past war, fought in the same area, is brought to mind as Satan once again attempts to destroy Israel.
Verse 10: And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.
This is the end for the deceiver of the ages. He is cast into the place prepared for the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41). Many centuries were required for this slanderous culprit to reach his final destination. Now that he has arrived, he will experience nothing but continual torment-day and night-for ever and ever. Amen!
We need to digress for a moment at this point, because many persons-Christians included-harbor a misconception about hell. Whenever they see or hear the term, they picture a place where a little red-suited gremlin stokes the fires and torments his victims with a pitchfork. Satan is neither the stoker nor does he torment his followers-and, as we have observed, he does not enter hell until after the Millennium. As we have already learned, Satan is the god of this world [system] (2 Corinthians 4:4), the prince of the power of the air (Ephesians 2:2), and the ruler of heavens one and two-the aerial and stellar heavens. He retains this position until he is cast out of heaven (see chapter 12, verses 7-9). He then reigns on earth for the final forty-two months of the Tribulation period. Upon Christ’s return to earth, Satan is bound in the bottomless pit, and then, following the Millennium, is released for a short season. Finally, he is cast into hell, or the lake of fire and brimstone, where he is tormented for all eternity. An understanding of these truths is essential to both victorious living and correct interpretation of the Book of Revelation.
We now come to the most awesome portion of Scripture in the entire Bible-the judgment of the wicked.
Verse 11: And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.
Verse 12: And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
Verse 13: And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.
Verse 14: And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
Verse 15: And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.
Again John says, I saw. The term is found thirty seven times in this book. What a privilege was his! This time he views the gloomiest hour of history-the judgment of the wicked-as well as Christ sitting upon a white throne. White is the symbol of purity, justice, and holiness in Scripture. Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be white as snow (Isaiah 1:18). His wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white (chapter 19, verses 7 and 8).
Since “white” stands for all that is honorable and right, what does it symbolize? Integrity-for Christ, who is the truth (John 14:6), is himself the Judge. Notice that the term is Great White Throne. This pictures a great judgment that is about to fall on those who have rejected the “so great salvation” question (see Hebrews 2:3).
How does one know that the tender, loving Jesus is the One who sits upon the throne as Judge? The answer is found in John 5:22: For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son. Again, the Father hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man (John 5:27). The One raised from the dead-the Lord Jesus Christ-is the Judge, according to Acts. 17:31: [For] he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead. That moment is now before us!
What a solemn scene as unregenerate mankind comes face to face with God for the investigation of all their evil deeds. Every transgressor is present: presidents and paupers, high society snobs and skid row derelicts. Yes, this group includes every Christ-rejecter of the ages, small and great, rich and poor, free and bond. Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life [the first resurrection]; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation [the resurrection for judgment] (John 5:28,29). Make no mistake about it, there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust (Acts 24:15).
As the unsaved stand before a holy God, the books are opened. Yes, He has record of every wicked deed sinners have ever committed. Nothing remains hidden. Adultery, abortion, drunkenness, drug addiction, harlotry, hatred, lawlessness, murder, rebellion, sexual promiscuity, wife-swapping, and every other abominable practice is then exposed in detail.
How is all this possible? God is both omniscient (all knowing) and omnipotent (all-powerful). The psalmist said in chapter 139, verses 1 and 2, O Lord, thou hast searched me, and known me. Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising. God knows everything about every member of the human race. God adds, I know the things that come into your mind, every one of them (Ezekiel 11:5). I know when you have eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin (2 Peter 2:14). I know when your tongue is about to curse, For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O Lord, thou knowest it altogether(Psalm 139:4). I the Lord search the heart (Jeremiah 17:10). This statement is extremely important, For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornication, thefts, false witness, blasphemies (Matthew 15:19).
God’s books will be totally accurate because He sees every move humans make: The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth (2 Chronicles 16:9). All things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do (Hebrews 4: 13). That aborted fetus flushed into oblivion, that sex act in a parked car or motel room; that crooked deal for illegal gain-everything is indelibly inscribed in the journal of the Almighty bookkeeper. One cannot hide from God, whoever He may be! Furthermore, no mistakes will be made, for the dead will be judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. We also see that every unbeliever will be present, for the bodies come forth from land and sea and the souls come from Hades (or hell). Then, body, soul, and spirit are reunited to stand before God.
Many have never realized that there is a time when the wicked are released from hell. This is not a new doctrine or man-made theory. However, for the moment, let’s examine a few facts regarding this teaching.
The New Testament contains two Greek words-Hades and Gehenna-both of which are translated hell in our English Bible. The Lord Jesus Christ used both words repeatedly. Why two words? Are there two places? Yes! A simple illustration will help us understand.
Everyone knows the difference between a local jail and a penitentiary. When an individual is arrested for a crime, he is not placed in the penitentiary until he has had a trial. Instead, he is locked up in the local jail (city or county), where he awaits his trail. Then, upon being found guilty, he is transferred to the penitentiary, where he serves his sentence. The next statement is of extreme importance. Get it! When Jesus used the word Hades, He referred to the local jail-the place where the sinner is bound until the judgment morning. Then, on Judgment Day, the sinner comes out of the local jail (Hades), stands before the Judge (the Lord Jesus himself), is found guilty, and is subsequently transferred to the final penitentiary of souls (Gehenna). The lake of fire is usually synonymous with Gehenna.
The eleven instances where Christ mentioned Hades are as follows: Matthew 11:23; 16:18; Luke 10:15; 16:22, 23; Acts 2:27; 2:3 1; 1 Corinthians 15:55; Revelation 1:18; 6:8; 20:13; and Revelation 20:14.
Gehenna is mentioned twelve times by the Saviour: Matthew 5:22; 5:29; 5:30; 10:28; 18:9; 23:15; 23:33; Mark 9:43; 9:45; 9:47; Luke 12:5; and James 3:6.
After studying the twenty-three texts, one observes that verses 13 and 14 of our present study now make perfect sense: Death [the grave] and hell [Hades] delivered up the dead which were in them. The plural pronoun “them” indicates two places: the grave and Hades-one for the body and the other for the soul. Next they were judged every man according to his works (that’s the trial). Then death and hell [Hades-Greek] were cast into the lake of fire [Gehenna-the final penitentiary].
Why are they transferred? Gehenna differs from Hades in that Gehenna is a place where there are degrees of suffering. After one has been examined and judged as to how much light he had (how often he heard the message of salvation and rejected it), he is assigned to this place called Gehenna, where there are degrees of suffering according to one’s light and works. Thus, the final hell will differ for all, depending on one’s evil deeds and the number of times he rejected Christ’s offer of love.
Now we understand Romans 2:5 a little better: But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up [storest up, savest up] unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath. This is why it shall be more tolerable [more bearable, more endurable] for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for [Capernaum] (Matthew 11:24). What was Capernaum’s sin? Capernaum had greater light since Christ visited the city and preached to her citizens. This is also why the Pharisees receive the greater damnation (Matthew 23:14).
Clearly, sinners are raised from death and Hades, judged by Christ at the Great White Throne, and then transferred to Gehenna. The “good news,” however, is that none of this happens to those who are trusting in the merits of the shed blood of Jesus. When one trusts Christ, his name is written in the book of life. The judgment just discussed is only for those whose names are not found inscribed in the book (see verse 15). If one is saved, he need never be concerned about hell as his eternal destiny, for he that believeth on [Christ] is not condemned (John 3:18). He is also passed from death unto life (John 5:24). Thus, there is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1). Amen.
The great judgment is only for those who participate in the final resurrection which occurs after the 1,000-year or millennial reign of Christ upon earth. Those who were raised prior to the Millennium are eternally secure, for blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power (verse 6).
CHANGED LIVES-one at a time
I just want to say that I have been listening to Dr. Jack since I was 13 years old. It was because of him that I grew to love the end times and want to study it. I bought the Apocalypse movies because I saw it on the program. I haven’t listened to the program in probably 13 years due to not having access to TBN where I used to watch it. Just recently, possibly due to the fact we are all on quarantine, I decided to look up Dr. Jack and see about listening/watching him. I just found out he passed, and so first I want to send my condolences to the family and those dear to him. Second I want to say he has made a huge impact on my life and I want to thank his wife and the team that always put the show together. It made a difference in my life.
Dear Dr Rexella Van Impe
May God bless you in your unfaltering efforts in bringing souls to Christ
You and your Ministry are on my prayer list
You and your team are so appreciated and I know that your Husband would be so proud of all of your efforts in keeping your Ministry alive
God Bless You All!
HIGHLIGHTED MINISTRY OFFERS
God’s Prophetic Voices to America
The Bible teaches that before God pours out His wrath on a nation He has blessed, He always warns by first calling the nation to repentance through prophetic voices and remedial judgments.
This book clearly shows how God has been speaking to America for decades through a variety of prophetic voices who have been alerting the nation to its sins and calling it to repentance. It also demonstrates how the nation has turned a deaf ear to these messages and to the remedial judgments God has sent.
This, of course, raises the crucial question: “Is there any hope for America?” The answer to that question which this book supplies is sobering. It will impel you into the Scriptures and to your knees in prayer.
Understand how ancient Biblical prophecies are coming to pass in our day, how coming prophetic events will impact you, and how there is hope for all followers of Christ.
We are approaching eternity at breakneck speed. We live in the very first generation to see all the end-time signs converging. The apocalyptic storm clouds foretold by the ancient biblical prophets are not arriving, and the hearts of people everywhere hunger to know more about the coming events.
Hope in the Last Days will walk you through the end-time prophecies, helping you to prepare for what is about to transpire on the earth. What you believe about prophecy will dramatically affect your future, the way you live your life, and how you prepare for what lies ahead. If you thought the past was intense, get ready for the future.