Weekly Newsletter – July 27, 2020
FROM THE HEART OF DR. REXELLA VAN IMPE
AM I ADDICTED?
When we hear the words “addict” or “addiction,” it seems that our chest involuntarily tightens and our heart drops in dread and alarm. Alcoholism and drug dependency-whether marijuana, crack cocaine, methamphetamines, heroin, ecstasy, or powerful prescription painkillers-are problems of crisis proportion in virtually every community in our nation.
Literally billions of dollars are being spent waging a futile battle against drugs-it is a war we are losing and cannot win because it is a key prophetic sign of the end-times, pointing to the soon coming of our Lord. Almost weekly the media sources try to personalize this pervasive plague, showing various individuals-often young people-who have surrendered their minds and given their bodies over to horrendous, destructive addictions.
Have you ever known an addict? Perhaps this person wasted all his or her resources on drugs, maybe even stole from family and friends, or got involved in crime or prostitution to feed his or her enslaving habit. It’s heartbreaking to see bright, decent people sink so low that they literally can’t help themselves. I’ve known drug-enslaved youngsters who went into rehabilitation programs and seemed to be all right for a while. But too often they ended up right back on drugs, more hopeless than before.
Is addiction killing America?
Besides alcohol and drugs, Americans struggle with countless other awful addictions. Millions are obsessed by gambling, uncontrolled spending, pornography, illicit sex, and other vicious vices. Millions more spend hour after hour surfing the Internet, playing video games, or sitting like zombies in front of TV sets watching inane and immoral programs. And in a land of abundance and excess, two-thirds of Americans are obese, literally eating themselves to death, fatally addicted to food!
Is this addiction? I believe so. When these activities habitually and obsessively control people’s behavior, causing them to develop a compulsive need for whatever controls them, they are addicts! And these kinds of addictions are powerful…and potentially deadly.
I’ll never forget a teenaged girl I met on the street in downtown Toronto a few years ago. Jack and I had gone to enjoy a few days of relaxation and rest there, and had gone out for a late-night walk. Summertime Toronto is a very safe and wonderful place to walk, with thousands of other people out enjoying the lights and sights of the city.
When we stopped at a corner to wait for the traffic light to change, this teenager came up to me and said, “I know you-I’ve seen you on television.” I greeted her, and we talked for a brief moment. I sensed from her appearance and facial expressions that she probably was part of the drug culture. She told me that sometimes when she couldn’t sleep at night, she went over to a store window with a display of television sets and watched our program, “Jack Van Impe Presents….”
Then she asked, “Where are you going, Rexella?
I replied that Jack and I were on our way back to our hotel-that it was about bedtime for us. And I asked, “Are you going home tonight?”
Her answer burned into my very soul-“I am home,” she said, “I live on the street!”
Just then the stoplight changed, and a flood of people surged off the sidewalk into the street, carrying us along with them. Somehow I lost my new friend in the crowd. I looked for her when I got to the corner…I even went back across the street trying to find her. But I never saw her again. The Lord knows where she is-where all of the lost and addicted souls are who are wandering in the dark.
I often think about that teenager and the sad look on her face whenever I pray about the problem of addicts. I hope she watched our telecast again and received words of hope and encouragement, and that the Lord has helped her get off the streets and free from her addiction.
Can we be addicted to good?
According to the dictionary, one of the definitions for addiction could have a positive connotation-“a compelling motivation.” I believe this is what the Apostle Paul was exhibiting when he declared in 1 Corinthians 9:16, Woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!
He was saying, “I am compelled to share the gospel. There is something about my calling that is so powerful that it is like an addiction. There is nothing else I can do but preach-I can’t help it, I must do this.” No wonder he wrote in Romans 1:15, I am ready to preach the gospel….
Paul’s calling must have been a “compelling motivation,” because he traveled all over the known world of his day preaching the gospel, making converts, and planting churches. In some areas he was accepted, honored, and lauded, but in many other places he was met with opposition and persecution. No doubt there were plenty of times when he might have turned back had it not been for his addiction to the gospel and carrying out the Great Commission.
Acts 14 relates how unbelievers sought to stone Paul and Barnabas in Iconium, but they escaped and went to preach at Lystra. Then his persecutors did stone Paul there and left him for dead. But he managed to get up and go to Derbe, another city in the area, to preach. After teaching many people there, Paul headed right back to Lystra and Iconium to minister in the very places where people had tried to kill him.
Later Paul listed some of the persecution and trouble he faced in order to carry out his calling. He spoke of being in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft. Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one. Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep; in journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; in weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness (2 Corinthians 11:23-27).
Why would Paul take such risks and endure such pain and hardship? He was an addict to his calling. He had to go, even if it meant facing persecution. “I have to do it,” he said, “for woe is me if I preach not the gospel!”
Paying the price
There is a price to be paid for serving God. Those who are not sold out, soul and body, to their commitment to Christ and their calling to His commission may find the Christian lifestyle too arduous and difficult. Some have turned back and said, “This is not for me.” But many, many others have given their all to the cause of Christ-they became addicts who gave themselves so completely to the Lord that they could do nothing else.
We have a great host of tremendous examples, all the way back to the first disciples. All of them became martyrs for the Lord-they were all murdered for their faith, every single one. And there are other great Christian champions in almost every era.
Some years ago Jack and I were in Europe visiting England, where I was privileged to interview some noted church leaders in that country. During a visit to historic Westminster Abbey, I was particularly drawn to the burial site of David Livingstone, the renowned missionary to Africa.
Livingstone was born into a poor Scottish family, and began working fourteen-hour days in the cotton mill at age 10. He went to night school for two hours after work each day, and would also prop books on his machine so he could study while working. Later he studied medicine and theology in Glasgow, and soon felt called to go to Africa as a missionary.
Asked why he would leave Britain to go to the “dark continent,” where he most likely would give his life and die, Livingstone said simply, “I am compelled by the love of Christ.”
For the next thirty years he served God in Africa as a missionary preacher, physician, scientist, anti-slavery activist, and explorer. He trekked over and mapped an amazing one-third of the continent. When Livingstone died on May 1, 1873, kneeling by his cot in prayer, his faithful African friends buried his heart at the foot of a giant tree, mummified his body and carried it almost a thousand miles to the coast. A ship carried his remains to London, where he was buried in Westminster Abbey on April 18, 1874. That day was an official day of national mourning in England.
When I stood in that famous old church and read the memorial marker for Livingstone, I was impressed by both his total life sacrifice and his remarkable accomplishments for the Lord. “Compelled by the love of Christ,” he helped change the course of history in Africa and strike a powerful blow against slavery world-wide.
Buried next to Livingstone in Westminster Abbey is his brother, John. While David was preparing himself for a lifetime of missionary service, John’s ambition was to find a way to earn lots of money. Apparently he was successful and became very wealthy. I believe he also became a famous cricket player, and enjoyed fame and adulation in addition to his affluent lifestyle.
None of these things were worthy of consideration when John’s memorial marker was inscribed. There is no mention of his wealth, fame, or position. The marker reads simply: John Livingstone, The brother of David Livingstone.”
Isn’t that astounding? All of John’s riches and privileged lifestyle amounted to nothing in the end. But David Livingstone’s addiction to the gospel-being compelled by the love of Christ-will be recognized forever, both here and in heaven.
I lived with an addict!
For an example of a person “addicted” to the work of the Lord, let me take you a little closer to home-in fact, to my home. I have had the privilege of spending a lifetime with my dear husband, Dr. Jack Van Impe. And from the beginning of our life together, I realized that he was absolutely an addict when it came to serving the Lord.
For many years we traveled all over the world ministering in churches, later in large community auditoriums, and doing everything possible to win souls to our Lord. In those days we spent far more time on the road than we did at home. It took dedication, hard work, and an all-consuming passion for soul-winning and for giving people hope and comfort in a troubled world.
But that’s not all. There is absolutely no way for me to fully describe Jack’s determination-no, compulsion!-to memorize the Word of God. For weeks, months, years, he spent hours every day studying handwritten cards with Bible verses written on them. Not only did he memorize each verse and where it was found in the Bible, but also its subject. That’s why today, it’s not unusual to hear him quote a dozen verses from various parts of the Bible relating to a specific topic. It’s amazing, even to me after all these years.
But I know what it cost him-hours and hours and hours of daily study to memorize them…and ongoing hours and hours every year to review and refresh those verses in his mind, even today.
And that’s still not all. For many, many years now, Jack averaged reading at least one book a day, studying the Bible and prophetic topics, as well as history, current events, and international politics. When he speaks so authoritatively on television, applying the Word of God to today’s news about events and world leaders, he knows what he is talking about. He is an absolute addict to his ministry!
By the way, Jack and I produced fifty television programs a year, in addition to the videos, books, magazines, and other ministry projects. The average TV sitcom does only twenty-seven or twenty-eight shows per year. We’ve been producing fifty programs annually for years. Is the extra work worth it? Absolutely! We get thousands of letters from people who say they prayed the prayer with Jack at the end of the program and accepted Christ into their hearts.
When we would go out to a restaurant or a shopping center, we’re were almost always bombarded by people who’ve seen us on TV and just want to say hello or share a brief testimony. One evening we were stopped nineteen times on a short walk.
Our office has record of more than two million precious people who have come to Christ through the outreaches of Jack Van Impe Ministries. At a time when others might be thinking of slowing down, he still is addicted to helping others open their hearts and lives to our Lord! Full speed ahead!
Are you an addict?
What about you? Even if you are not called to a pulpit ministry, or to minister on television, or in a church setting, I believe God has given you a special gift to share with others. There is a way you can serve the Lord-in fact; there may well be people you can reach with the gospel who might not respond to anyone else in the whole world.
Wherever God has placed you is your mission field! How can you be a witness to those in your world? Are you taking advantage of your unique opportunities to be used of the Lord?
What if you set a goal to share a testimony, a word of witness, or to stand up for what is right at least once each day? You wouldn’t have to be a preacher, or have dozens of Bible verses memorized, or be a trained counselor. What if you just shared what God has done in your life? If you are willing to do it, someone will listen!
Become an addict for good, for God…driven by an all-consuming passion to do something-anything-for the Lord today.
A CLASSIC MESSAGE OF HOPE FROM DR. JACK VAN IMPE
Revelation 8: 1 – 13
We now witness the opening of the seventh seal. This seal includes the seven trumpet judgments. They are so terrifying that, as they are opened, all the heavenly host becomes silent.
Verse 1: And when he had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour.
Bob Ripley, in his “Believe It or Not” newspaper column, stated: “This verse proves there will be no women in heaven.” Ha! Seriously, what causes this breathtaking silence among angels and men? Answer-the contemplation of the forthcoming trumpet blasts.
Verse 2: And I saw the seven angels which stood before God; and to them were given seven trumpets.
These trumpet judgments were prophesied by Enoch as recorded in the Book of Jude, verses 14 and 15, and were anticipated by the psalmist as well. That’s why Psalm 96:13 states: He cometh to judge the earth: he shall judge the world with righteousness, and the people with his truth. Paul also confirmed these judgments in Acts 17:31, mentioning a time when the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men (Romans 1:18). Before the first trumpet sends forth its blast in verse 7, however, we witness an unusual prayer meeting in the next three verses.
Verse 3: And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne.
This angel is obviously the Lord Jesus Christ himself, because He ministers both to God and man (see 1 Timothy 2:5). The Saviour also appeared as the angel of the Lord in the Old Testament in many instances: He wrestled with Jacob, walked among Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the fiery furnace, and made numerous other Old Testament visits to His people. This Mediator between God and men ever liveth to make intercession (Hebrews 7:25) and now stands at the altar adding incense (efficacy) to the prayers being offered by the saints of God on earth. They are imprecatory prayers for judgment, as in Revelation 6:10. They cry, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? At this point their prayers have reached the throne of God!
Verse 4: And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel’s hand.
Now prayers are answered, and judgment is prepared.
Verse 5: And the angel took the censer, and filled it with fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth: and there were voices, and thunderings, and lightnings, and an earthquake.
What a contrast from the solemn silence of verse 1. Now every noise imaginable is heard as judgment is prepared.
Verse 6: And the seven angels which had the seven trumpets pre-pared themselves to sound.
At this moment the heavenly military says, “Ready! Aim! Fire!” This is it!
Verse 7: The first angel sounded, and there followed hail and fire mingled with blood, and they were cast upon the earth: and the third part of trees was burnt up, and all green grass was burnt up.
We have no difficulty understanding this verse literally. The same kind of judgment occurred in Exodus 9:22, 23: And the Lord said unto Moses, Stretch forth thine hand toward heaven, that there may be hail in all the land of Egypt…And Moses stretched forth his rod toward heaven: and the Lord sent thunder and hail, and the fire ran along upon the ground; and the Lord rained hail upon the land of Egypt. So there was hail, and fire mingled with the hail, very grievous, such as there was none like it in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation. It happened then; now it happens again!
Verse 8: And the second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning with fire was cast into the sea: and the third part of the sea became blood;
This judgment is undoubtedly a giant meteor falling into the sea. Notice the phrase, as it were a mountain. This, again, is a symbolic description. Always take every word of the Bible literally unless God tells you to take it figuratively. This passage is an example of the latter. Something gigantic, as or like a mountain, is cast into the sea and causes a third part of the sea to become blood. A similar occurrence was experienced in Moses’ day: And the Lord spake unto Moses, Say unto Aaron, Take thy rod, and stretch out thine hand upon the waters of Egypt, upon their streams, upon their rivers, and upon their ponds, and upon all their pools of water, that they may become blood; and that there may be blood throughout all the land of Egypt, both in vessels of wood, and in vessels of stone. And Moses and Aaron did so, as the Lord commanded; and he lifted up the rod, and smote the waters that were in the river, in the sight of Pharaoh, and in the sight of his servants; and all the waters that were in the river were turned to blood. And the fish that [were] in the river died (Exodus 7:19-21).
Verse 9: And the third part of the creatures which were in the sea, and had life, died; and the third part of the ships were destroyed.
God’s second trumpet blast is so horrendous that one-third of the creatures in the sea die and a third part of the ships are destroyed. God only knows what horrendous plagues will result when nuclear war under, upon, and above the oceans takes place.
Verse 10: And the third angel sounded, and there fell a great star from heaven, burning as it were a lamp, and it fell upon the third part of the rivers, and upon the fountains of waters,
Verse 11: And the name of the star is called Wormwood: and the third part of the waters became wormwood; and many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter.
Strange that Chernobyl in the Ukrainian Bible means “Wormwood.” This judgment also occurred in Moses’ day: Behold, I will smite with the rod that is in mine hand upon the waters which are in the river, and they shall be turned to blood (Exodus 7:17). Now the phenomenon is repeated. A star, or meteor, soaring through space, speeds toward earth. When it strikes, one-third of our planet’s water supply becomes a deadly poison. Rivers, springs, and wells are affected. Something similar happened in decades past. A volcanic explosion in the Aleutian Islands on March 21, 1823, caused the waters in that area to become bitter and unfit for human consumption. This could easily happen again.
God created every star, knows their locations, and has named them. Job 9:9 states: [He] maketh Arcturus, Orion, and Pleiades, and the chambers of the south. He also knows where the star, Wormwood, meaning “bitterness,” is located, because Jeremiah 9:15 reports, Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel; behold, I will feed them, even this people, with wormwood, and give them water of gall to drink (Jeremiah 9:15). It will happen!
Verse 12: And the fourth angel sounded, and the third part of the sun was smitten, and the third part of the moon, and the third part of the stars; so as the third part of them was darkened, and the day shone not for a third part of it, and the night likewise.
Verse 13: And I beheld, and heard an angel flying through the midst of heaven, saying with a loud voice, Woe, woe, woe, to the inhabiters of the earth by reason of the other voices of the trumpet of the three angels, which are yet to sound!
This fourth judgment has to do with earth’s luminaries-the sun, moon, and stars. We note with interest that, on the fourth day of creation, God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven (Genesis 1:14). Now, at the blast of the fourth trumpet, one-third of the light produced by these bodies is extinguished. This, too, happened in Moses’ day: And the Lord said unto Moses, Stretch out thine hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, even darkness which may be felt. And Moses stretched forth his hand toward heaven; and there was a thick darkness in all the land of Egypt three days: They saw not one another, neither rose any from his place for three days (Exodus 10:21-23). It happened once; it will happen again!
The worst, however, is yet to come. An angel flying through the midst of heaven cries, Woe, woe, woe! This correlates with Daniel, chapter 9, where the Seventieth Week (discussed in Revelation, chapter 6) is described. The first three and one-half years of the Tribulation are not nearly as severe as the final three and one-half years. In Matthew 24:8, our Lord described the first half of this time period as the beginning of sorrows. However, He referred to the final three and one-half years as the great tribulation (Matthew 24:21). As the Tribulation hour approaches its climax, the judgments become more severe and the loss of life greater. This is especially noticed as one observes that two verses cover the scope of each of the first four trumpets. However, trumpet five requires twelve verses and trumpet six necessitates nine verses.
We will cover these in our next newsletter.
CHANGED LIVES-one at a time
Thank you for the faithful years of service. I know the LORD used you through your broadcast to get me back on track many times. I just want to thank you and your lovely wife again for bringing the LORD’s WORD into our household. For bringing the WORD, unfiltered!
Dear Jack and Rexella,
Soon after I got saved some 15 years ago I discovered Jack Van Impe presents on television. Very new to the faith at that time my understanding of bible prophecy was basic at best. Jack caught my attention quickly with his passion, knowledge and love for God’s word. Watching him and Rexella open the mysteries of bible prophecy changed everything. Instead of knowing Jesus only as Savior and the Lamb of God, I discovered Him as the soon returning and conquering Lion of the tribe of Judah. The bible came alive to me through Jacks teachings and by God’s grace I’m aware of the times in which we live and alert to each passing headlines that moves us ever so closer to that wonderful day in which we will hear those fateful words.. “come up hither!” Thanks for everything Jack, see you soon.
HIGHLIGHTED MINISTRY OFFERS
For anyone who has ever lost a beloved pet, Dr. Jack and Rexella Van Impe have good news! You will see your furry or feathered friends again – in heaven! Explore this exciting truth taught by twelve of the greatest Christian theologians.
You will see and hear the exact spine-tingling statements from the pens of men like Dr. John Walvoord, Dr. Billy Graham, Dr. J. Vernon McGee, Dr. John Calvin and many others. This video study deals with animal intelligence, animal communication, and how animals literally teach humans some valuable lessons.
Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils I Timothy 4:1
But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. II Timothy 3:13
Will everyone be in Heaven? Are there many paths to follow to get there? Can anyone get to Heaven without the Lord Jesus Christ? In this world of Political Correctness the answers are shocking. The very foundations of Christianity are under attack.
Drs. Jack & Rexella Van Impe meet these attacks head on in this fascinating new video Christianity Seduced. They stand for Biblical Correctness – “…let God be true, but every man a liar…” (Romans 3:4). In this amazing study you will discover that the New Age teaching is nothing new but has been around since Satan first spoke in the Garden of Eden.