Daily Archives: November 17, 2019

November 17 Pruning Passions

Scripture Reading: Mark 12:1–9

Key Verse: Mark 12:1

Then He began to speak to them in parables: “A man planted a vineyard and set a hedge around it, dug a place for the wine vat and built a tower. And he leased it to vinedressers and went into a far country.”

The spiritual pruning process of our lives includes cutting away all that reflects our earthly passions that are in opposition to God’s holiness.

  1. B. Simpson has this to say:

Before the Holy of Holies can be fully opened to our hearts and we can enter into … communion of God, the veil upon our hearts must be rent asunder, and this comes as it came on Calvary—by the death of our flesh.

It is when we yield our own natural self to God to die and He slays us by the power of His Spirit that the obstruction to our communion with God is removed and we enter into its deeper fullness. The greatest hindrance to our peace and victory is the flesh. Whenever the consciousness of self rises vividly before you, and you become absorbed in your own troubles, cares, rights or wrongs, you at once lose communion with God, and a cloud of darkness falls over your spirit.

There is really nothing else that hurts or hinders us but this heavy weight of evil, this seed of Satan.… We can never rend it asunder, but the Holy Spirit can. It dies only on the cross of Jesus … under the fire of His descending Spirit. Bring it to Him, give Him the right to slay it, and then the veil will be rent asunder. The Holy of Holies will open wide, the light of the Shekinah will shine through all the house of God, and the glory of heaven will be revealed in your life.

I yield myself to You, Lord. Remove every obstruction that hinders my communion with You.[1]

 

[1] Stanley, C. F. (2006). Pathways to his presence (p. 336). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

November 17 Time Spent in Waiting

Scripture Reading: Psalm 27

Key Verse: Psalm 27:14

Wait on the Lord; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; wait, I say, on the Lord!

All of us know the feelings that accompany making a quick decision. After we walk away, we wonder whether we did the right thing. Many times we have a nagging sense inside that we didn’t. How can we avoid this?

How and when to wait on God is one of the wisest things you can learn about the Christian faith. At times doing this may seem difficult, especially in a society where faxes, E-mail, and overnight mail services are a way of life, but it’s a principle that brings great reward.

Too many people ignore God’s plea to wait. They push ahead of Him in the decision-making process. Impulsive spending is one area that is abused regularly. Ron Blue, founder of Ronald Blue and Company, a financial advisory firm, reminds us, “You can spend money any way you want, but you can only spend it once.” Bad decisions have consequences. When we fail to wait for God’s best, we often end up making horrendous mistakes.

If God is blocking you from making a certain decision, consider it a blessing. He is saving you from hurt—physical or emotional. See this as an opportunity to draw closer to Him. Make it a goal not to move ahead until you hear Him say, “This is the way, walk in it” (Isa. 30:21).

God uses the time you spend in waiting to prepare you for His future blessings. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about missed opportunities. When the timing is right, God will open the door.

Lord, I want to wait for Your best in every area of my life. Thank You for the tremendous doors of opportunity that lie ahead—doors I don’t yet see. I know You will open them in due time.[1]

 

[1] Stanley, C. F. (1999). On holy ground (p. 336). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

November 17 Picking Up the Pieces

Scripture reading: Lamentations 3:18–58

Key verse: Lamentations 3:57

You drew near on the day I called on You,

And said, “Do not fear!”

Barbara Johnson has experienced intense levels of maternal pain. After her oldest son was killed in Vietnam, she and her husband unpacked his duffel bag, crying, and shared memories of his growing-up years. In her last letter to him, she reminded him of Jesus’ love, and that no matter what happened, he would be safe with the Lord. The letter was still in his wallet, wrinkled and blurred with water from the rice paddy where he fell.

She tells about this moment of grief in her book Pack Up Your Gloomies in a Great Big Box:

My letter had arrived the very morning of the ambush in which Steve had been killed. Sitting there in that bedroom surrounded by Steve’s smelly Marine gear, I was reminded of Jeremiah’s words in Lamentations.

We, too, had been afflicted and filled with bitter herbs. Our teeth had been broken on the gravel of grief. We had been trampled in the dust. Prosperity seemed like a forgotten word, and our souls were downcast.

But as I re-read the letter Steve had taken with him into his final battle, I realized that, despite all the pain, we still had an endless hope and with it endless joy. The Lord’s great love and compassion fail not. Truly, they are new every morning. Great is His faithfulness. Steve was our deposit in heaven. We could pick up the pieces of our lives and move on.

O Lord, sometimes when tragedies strike, I feel like giving up. Help me to pick up the pieces of my life and move on in faith.[1]

 

[1] Stanley, C. F. (2000). Into His presence (p. 336). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

November 17, 2019 Afternoon Verse Of The Day

17  It may be worthwhile to refer again to the structural analysis of vv. 16 and 17 (Sentences 4–9). Verse 16a and d (sentences 4 and 7) are parallel: those who feared the Lord spoke to one another (Sentence 4), and those who feared the Lord kept his name in mind (Sentence 7). The key expression in both phrases is “those who feared the Lord.” We have a similar parallel construction between v. 16b and c (sentences 5 and 6) and v. 17 (sentences 8 and 9): God takes heed of them (sentences 5 and 6), and God will spare them as his treasured possession (sentences 8 and 9). Both of these sections are again internally parallel: God takes heed and he listens (sentences 5 and 6), and they will be his treasured possession and he will spare them (sentences 8 and 9).

The identity of the pious ones and their future experiences will be fully revealed on the day that God will make. Indeed, they will be mine. The copulative in v. 17 is either explicative, “namely,” or emphatic, “indeed.” The subject is “those who feared the Lord” (v. 16). The significance of this statement is explained by the Hebrew word seg̱ullâ, “treasured possession.” There is no need to regard this word, because of its peculiar position at the end of the sentence, as a later addition to the text (so J. M. P. Smith, et al.). The reading is supported by the ancient versions, and it would be unthinkable that a glossator should have disregarded the rules of syntax by adding the word in its present position.

To be the Lord’s is to be his treasured possession. In its profane usage seg̱ullâ means “property” (Lat. peculium, “that which is accumulated by thrift”). In Eccl. 2:8 it is used of the treasures which Qohelet has amassed in the course of time (cf. 1 K. 10; 2 Chr. 1:14–17; 9:1–28). In 1 Chr. 29:3 it denotes the “personal treasures” of David. In the religious sense the word is used to denote the special position of Israel in its relationship to God as his elect people (Deut. 7:6; 14:2; Ps. 135:4). The parallelism of election and possession in connection With Israel is significantly expressed in Ps. 135:4: “For the Lord has chosen Jacob to be his own, Israel to be his treasured possession.”

This elevation of Israel to be God’s seg̱ullâ is an essential aspect of the Sinaitic covenant (Exod. 19:5, 6), with its later renewal in the territory of Moab, where the Lord declared, “that you [Israel] are his people, his treasured possession as he promised.… He has declared that he will set you in praise, fame and honor high above all the nations he has made and that you will be a people holy to the Lord your God, as he promised” (Deut. 26:18, 19, NIV). The word seg̱ullâ sometimes occurs in the phrase ʿam seg̱ullâ, “peculiar people” (Deut. 7:6; 14:2; 26:18), as a parallel expression to ʿam qāḏôš, “holy people” (Deut. 7:6; 14:2; 26:19), or gôy qāḏôš, “holy nation” (Exod. 19:6). The rendering of the LXX, peripoíēsin, “to save something,” “that which remains,” “profit,” and then “(acquired) possession,” forms the basis of the NT’s usage of the term (cf. Eph. 1:14; 2 Thess. 2:14; Tit. 2:14; 1 Pet. 2:9). The term seg̱ullâ, usually applied to Israel as people (Exod. 19:5, 6), is here used to denote the pious remnant in an eschatological context. The? represent the true Israel (Rom. 9:6–9), “a remnant, chosen by grace” (Rom. 11:5).

The promise to those who feared the Lord to be or become his treasured possession will be fulfilled on the day that I will make. The Hebrew relative ʾašer is not taken as an accusative of time (Vulg., Calvin, et al.), but as an accusative of the object (LXX, Luther, et al.), in the sense of “the day that I will create.” This “day” is the “time” of the Lord’s unexpected appearance (3:1, 5), when he will purge his people (3:2–5), consume the wicked (3:19), and bless the righteous (3:20, 21 [Eng. 4:2, 3]).

I will spare them, just as a man spares his son who serves him. The fact that the pious will be the seg̱ullâ of the Lord entails that he will spare them. The Hebrew verb ḥāmal means “have compassion on,” with the extended meaning “spare.” Amid the tribulations of the day of judgment God will bestow his compassion on the pious by delivering, sparing them from the ordeal (cf. Jer. 50:14; Ezek. 8:18; Joel 2:18; etc.). The comparison with the behavior of a father toward a diligent and faithful son refers to 1:6 and stresses the significance of the relationship between God and those who truly belong to him. In addition it serves as an answer to the arrogant supposition that it is futile to serve the Lord (v. 14). The truly righteous ones will be revealed on the day of God’s judgment as those who are justified by the Lord himself. This is especially apparent from v. 18.[1]


Yahweh’s Special Possession (3:17)

17 Yahweh speaks concerning an impending day of action (layyôm ʾăšer ʾănî ʿōśê, “the day when I act”), when a distinction will be made between those who serve God and those who do not. The Yahweh-fearers identified here with the third masculine plural form of the verb (hāyû), will be a valued possession (səgullā) to Yahweh. The noun səgullā refers to the nation, the covenant community (Exod 19:5; Deut 7:6; 14:2; 26:18), the people chosen by God. The election of Israel may constitute its status as a valued possession (Deut 7:6; 14:2; Ps 135:4); in Exod 19:5 the status is contingent on obedience. Likewise, in Deut 26:18–19, God chose the people to be a valued possession, and they agreed to the terms of the relationship—to be a holy people (ʿam qādôš). In Mal 3:17, səgullā does not refer to the entire nation but to those within the nation, however few or many, who fear God—the very stance lacking in the priests. The priests’ lack of reverence and honor led to the accusation and contributed to the curse on the land. Consequently, while the entire nation may have been deemed God’s possession, in the postexilic community that label is used in a restrictive sense of the Yahweh-fearers. Being a member of the covenant community does not guarantee blessing. The narrowed distinction is apparent in this designation of Yahweh’s planned action. Whether or not this qualifies the status of the community before Yahweh at the present, the temporal indicator does qualify its status at a specific time—that is, the day (hayyôm) when Yahweh acts (cf. Mal 3:19, 21). The temporal indicator may also govern the other promised action: God’s future compassion.

The recipients of God’s compassion will be the covenant people—in particular, those who fear God—I will have compassion on them. Clearly, in this instance the corporate view of the community is secondary. The distinctions between the wicked and the righteous regulate how Yahweh will deal with the community. God will have compassion on (ḥāmal) only the Yahweh-fearers. The verb ḥāmal usually means “to have compassion” and “to spare,” especially in the context of war (cf. 1 Sam 15:3, 15). It may be used in negative formulations to mean not having compassion or sparing people (e.g., Ezek 8:18; Zech 11:5–6), or positively, of having compassion (Joel 2:18). By specifying the recipients of the compassion with the preposition (ʿălêhem) “on them,” the declaration excludes others—that is, those who do not fear Yahweh.

The declaration elaborates and further narrows the group of recipients by means of a comparison with the action of a father toward his son: as a man has compassion on his son. This speaks to the typical nature of the relationship (Mal 1:6); a “man” (ʾîš) would have compassion on “his son” (bənô).

As a father has compassion [riḥam] for his children, so the Lord has compassion for those who fear him [ʿal-yərēʾāyw]. (Ps 103:13 NRSV)

But a further qualification signifies that only under certain conditions is compassion normative. Compassion is for the one who serves him. The clause the one who serves (ʿābad) him alludes to Mal 3:14 regarding the possibility of reward for serving God (contrast 2:8). One would expect a servant to serve but a son to love and honor (Mal 1:6). In making this distinction, Mal 3:17 reveals that the promised actions do not apply to all but only to those who serve Yahweh. Not all are the valued possession, and not all will be spared. The idea that the wicked escape is thus addressed even here—they will not be spared if they do not fear and serve God (cf. Mal 3:15). The decisive element in the father’s compassion toward his son would be service. Arguably, the father would not have compassion on a son who does not serve him. By comparison, Yahweh would be compassionate toward the Yahweh-fearers—namely, those who serve Yahweh.[2]


The Lord Promises A Special Privilege (v. 17)

The Lord will not only remember these people but also treat them as his own special treasure on that glorious day when he makes up his jewels. The thought is that God’s people are jewels who are scattered and mired in the mud of this world. But at the end, he will find them all, put them into his treasure chest and will look upon them with pride and satisfaction. They will be his crown jewels. God’s people may not appear to be much now, but they will be known to be much then (see Dan. 12:3).[3]


3:17 The excitement of these words is that we can sense the pride God has in His children. The Hebrew word translated jewels could be rendered “special treasure.” It is a wonderfully endearing term that is used in the OT only of the people of Israel as they are valued by the living God (Ex. 19:5; Deut. 7:6; Ps. 135:4).[4]


3:17 Mine … My own possession. “Mine” is emphatic in the Hebrew. The godly remnant will belong to Him and will be His special treasure, or “possession” (cf. same word in Ex 19:5; Dt 7:6; 14:2; 26:18; Ps 135:4). In the midst of judgment, He will spare them (cf. Ps 103:13).[5]


3:17 They shall be mine. This phrase refers to the remnant described in v. 16.

my treasured possession. In the early stage of Old Testament revelation the nation of Israel is called God’s “treasured possession” (Ex. 19:5; Deut. 7:6; 14:2).[6]


17. He shows by the issue itself why a book of remembrance was written—that God in due time would again undertake to defend and cherish his Church. Though then for a time many troubles were to be sustained by the godly, yet the Prophet shews that they did not in vain serve God; for facts would at length prove that their obedience has not been overlooked. But the two things which he mentions ought to be noticed; for a book of remembrance is first written before God, and then God executes what is written in the book. When therefore we seem to serve God in vain, let us know that the obedience we render to him will come to an account, and that he is a just Judge, though he may not immediately stretch forth his hand to us.

In the first place then the Prophet testifies that God knows what is done by every one; and in the second place he adds that he will in his own time perform what he has decreed. So also in judgments, he preserves the same order in knowing and in executing. For when he said to Abraham that the cry of Sodom came up to heaven, (Gen. 18:20,) how great and how supine was the security of the city. How wantonly and how savagely they despised every authority to the very last moment! But God had long before ascended his tribunal, and had taken an account of their wickedness. So also in the case of the godly, though he seems to overlook their obedience, yet he has not his eyes closed, or his ears closed, for there is a book of memorial written before him.

Hence he says, They shall be in the day I make. The verb is put by itself, but we may easily learn from the context that it refers to the restoration of the Church. In the day then in which I shall make, that is, complete what I have already said; for he had before promised to restore the Church. As then he speaks of a known thing, he says shortly, In the day I shall make, or complete my work, they shall be to me a peculiar treasure. This phrase confirms what I have already stated—that God has his season and opportunity, in order that there may be no presumption in us to prescribe to him the time when he is to do this or that. In the day then when he shall gather his Church, it will then appear that we are his peculiar treasure.

Thus the Prophet in these words exhorts us to patience, lest it should be grievous to us to groan under our burden, and not to find God’s help according to our wishes, and lest also it should be grievous to us to bear troubles in common with the whole Church. Were one or two of us subject to the cross, and doomed to sorrow and grief in this world, our condition might seem hard; but since the godly, from the first to the last, are made to be our associates in bearing the cross of Christ, and to be conformed to his example, there is no reason for any one of us to shun his lot; for we are not better than the holy patriarchs, apostles, and so many of the faithful whom God has exercised with the cross. Since then the common restoration of the Church is here set before us, let us know that a reason is here given for constancy and fortitude; for it would be disgraceful for us to faint, when we have so many leaders in this warfare, who by their examples stretch forth as it were their hands to us; for as Abraham, David, and other Patriarchs and Prophets, as well as Apostles, have suffered so many and so grievous troubles, ought not this fact to raise up our spirits? and if at any time our feet and our legs tremble, ought it not to be sufficient to strengthen us, that so many excellent chiefs and leaders invite us to persevere by their example? We then see that this has not been laid down for nothing, when I shall make, or complete my work.

By the words peculiar treasure, God intimates that the lot of the godly will be different from that of the world; as though he had said, “Ye are now so mixed together, that they who serve me seem not to be peculiar any more than strangers; but they shall then be my peculiar treasure.” This is to be taken, as I have already mentioned, for the outward appearance; for we know that we have been chosen by God, before the foundation of the world, for this end—that we might be to him a peculiar treasure. But when we are afflicted in common with the wicked, or when we seem to be even rejected, and the ungodly, on the other hand, seem to have God propitious to them, then nothing seems less true than this promise. I therefore said that this ought to be referred to the outward appearance—that the faithful are God’s peculiar treasure, that they are valued by him, and that he shows to them peculiar love, as to his own inheritance.

And this mode of speaking occurs in many parts of scripture; for God is often said to repudiate his people; the word separation, or divorce, is often mentioned; he is said to have destroyed his inheritance. Grievous is the trial, when God cherishes as it were in his bosom the ungodly, and we at the same time are exposed to every kind of misery; but we see what happened to the ancient Church: let us then arm ourselves for this contest, and be satisfied with the inward testimony of the Spirit, though outward things do not prosper.

He adds, And I will spare them as a man spares, &c. He states here a promise which ought especially to be observed: it contains two clauses; the first is, that the Jews who remained alive would render obedience to God, by which they would prove themselves to be children indeed, and not in name only: and the second is, that God would forgive them, that is, that he would exercise pardon in receiving their services, which could not otherwise please him. And there is no doubt but that the Spirit of regeneration is included in the words, the son who serves him; not that the faithful addressed here were wholly destitute of the fear of God; but God promises an increase of grace, as though he had said, “I will gather to myself the people who faithfully and sincerely worship me.” Though then he speaks not here of the beginning of a religious and holy life, it is yet the same as though he had said, that the faithful would be under his government, that they might devote themselves to his service.

The second promise refers to another grace,—that God in his mercy would approve of the obedience of the godly, though in itself unworthy to come to his presence. How necessary this indulgence is to us, they who are really and truly acquainted with the fear of God, fully know. The sophists daringly prattle about merits, and fill themselves and others with empty pride; but they who understand that no man can stand before God’s tribunal, do not dream of any merits, nor do they believe that they can bring anything before God, by which they can conciliate his favour. Hence their only refuge is what the Prophet here teaches us, that God spares them.

And it must be observed, that the Prophet does not speak simply of the remission of sins: our salvation, we know, consists of two things—that God rules us by his Spirit, and forms us anew in his own image through the whole course of our life,—and also that he buries our sins. But the Prophet refers here to the remission of sins, of which we have need as to our good works; for it is certain, that even when we devote ourselves with all possible effort and zeal to God’s service there is yet something always wanting. Hence it is that no work, however right and perfect before men, deserves this distinction and honour before God. It is therefore necessary, even when we strive our utmost to serve God, to confess that without his forgiveness whatever we bring deserves rejection rather than his favour. Hence the Prophet says, that when God is reconciled to us, there is no reason to fear that he will reject us, because we are not perfect; for though our works be sprinkled with many spots, they will yet be acceptable to him, and though we labour under many defects, we shall yet be approved by him. How so? Because he will spare us: for a father is indulgent to his children, and though he may see a blemish in the body of his son, he will not yet cast him out of his house; nay, though he may have a son lame, or squint-eyed, or singular for any other defect, he will yet pity him, and will not cease to love him: so also is the case with respect to God, who, when he adopts us as his children, will forgive our sins. And as a father is pleased with every small attention when he sees his son submissive, and does not require from him what he requires from a servant; so God acts; he repudiates not our obedience, however defective it may be.

We hence see the design and meaning of the Prophet,—that he promises pardon from God to the faithful, after having been reconciled to him, because they serve God as children willingly,—and that God also, though their works are unworthy of his favour, will yet count them as acceptable, even through pardon, and not on the ground of merit or worthiness.

prayer

Grant, Almighty God, that as Satan strives to draw us away from every attention to true religion, when things in the world are in a state of disorder and confusion,—O grant, that we may know that thou carest for us; and if we perceive not this by what we find in the world, may we rely on thy word, and doubt not but that thou ever watchest over our safety; and being supported by this confidence, may we ever go on in the course of our calling: and as thou hast deigned to make us partakers of that evidence of thy favour, by which we know that we are reconciled to thee in thine only-begotten Son; and being thus made his members, may we never hesitate cheerfully to offer to thee our services, however defective they may be, since thou hast once promised to be a propitious Father to us, so as not rigidly to try what we offer to thee, but so graciously to accept it, that we may know that not only our sins, which justly deserve condemnation, are forgiven and remitted to us, but that thou also so bearest with our infirmities and our defects in our imperfect works, that we shall at length receive the reward which thou hast promised, and which we cannot attain through our merits, but through the sanctification of thy Spirit, and through the sprinkling of the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ.—Amen.

Lecture One Hundred and Eighty-First

We saw in the last lecture that no works of the faithful please God, except through a gratuitous acceptance: it hence follows, that nothing can be ascribed to merits without derogating from the grace of Christ; for if the value of works depends on this, that God is our Father and is reconciled to us in Christ, nothing can be more absurd than to set up works, which ought to be subordinated to this paternal favour of God.

We now see how these two things harmonize—that reward is promised to works, and that works themselves deserve nothing before God; for though God can justly reject them, he yet regards them as acceptable, because he forgives all their defects. Thus have we briefly stated the reason why our works are approved by God; they are not so on account of any worthiness, but through his favour alone; for there is no work which would not on account of its imperfection be displeasing to God, were he to require that it should be according to the rule of his law. Hence God departs from his own law and turns to mercy, that he may regard works as acceptable, which otherwise could not, being defective, stand before his presence.[7]


[1] Verhoef, P. A. (1987). The Books of Haggai and Malachi (pp. 321–323). Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

[2] Jacobs, M. R. (2017). The Books of Haggai and Malachi. (E. J. Young, R. K. Harrison, & R. L. Hubbard Jr., Eds.) (pp. 315–317). Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

[3] Ellsworth, R. (2007). Opening up Malachi (p. 81). Leominster: Day One Publications.

[4] Radmacher, E. D., Allen, R. B., & House, H. W. (1999). Nelson’s new illustrated Bible commentary (p. 1127). Nashville: T. Nelson Publishers.

[5] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (2006). The MacArthur study Bible: New American Standard Bible. (Mal 3:17). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[6] Sproul, R. C. (Ed.). (2005). The Reformation Study Bible: English Standard Version (p. 1349). Orlando, FL; Lake Mary, FL: Ligonier Ministries.

[7] Calvin, J., & Owen, J. (2010). Commentaries on the Twelve Minor Prophets (Vol. 5, pp. 605–611). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

Rep. John Ratcliffe SLAMS Adam Schiff for Not Releasing Inspector General’s Transcript that BLOWS UP his Case Against Trump (VIDEO) — The Gateway Pundit

Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-TX) joined Maria Bartiromo Sunday on Sunday Morning Futures this morning.

Ratcliffe destroyed the Democrat Party’s show trials this past week. On Sunday Ratcliffe discussed what to expect in the upcoming testimonies in the quid-pro-quo, extortion, bribery show trials.

Ratcliffe slammed Chairman Schiff for not releasing Intel Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson’s testimony which will blow up his case against President Trump.

Rep. Ratcliffe: It has now been discovered that Chairman Schiff’s office coordinated with that person (Ciaramella) to become the whistleblower. The other thing that Chairman Schiff hasn’t done… He hasn”t released the Inspector General’s transcript. The first transcript of the first witness because it will tell you what the inspector general knew and didn’t know about the relationship of Chairman Schiff and the whistleblower based on what Schiff and the whistleblower did or didn’t reveal.

Via Sunday Morning Futures.

via Rep. John Ratcliffe SLAMS Adam Schiff for Not Releasing Inspector General’s Transcript that BLOWS UP his Case Against Trump (VIDEO) — The Gateway Pundit

BOOM! Reporter John Solomon Threatens Lawsuits Against Liberal Media Smear Merchants – Claims Obama, Brennan and Lynch Involved in Spygate Scandal — The Gateway Pundit

Investigative reporter John Solomon joined Maria Bartiromo Sunday on Sunday Morning Futures.

Solomon led the media in exposing Ukrainian involvement in the 2016 US presidential elections.

The Obama administration and Hillary campaign and DNC operatives were working with Ukrainian officials to create the Trump-Russia collusion hoax during the 2016 election.

The liberal media attacked Solomon this week for his reports exposing Ukrainian operatives involvement in the 2016 election.

On Sunday John Solomon threatened lawsuits against the liberal media smear merchants.

John Solomon: Listen, every fact in every column I wrote on The Hill was vetted by The Hill, by their lawyers and to this day every fact that remains in public confirmed. Adam Schiff’s three witnesses confirm all of the narratives in my columns. Yes, the State Department embassy in Kiev was pressuring Ukrainian authorities to drop certain cases. Yes, there was concerns about Hunter Biden and his conflicts of interest at Burisma. And, yes there was some evidence that Ukrainian officials were trying to stick their fingers in our 2016 election… I’m in consultation with some lawyers right now about bringing some targeted legal action, not because I want to make any money but because I want to correct the public record for the American people.

Solomon then mentioned the real architects of the Spygate scandal.

John Solomon: Most counter intelligence investigations are always briefed to the president. I would like to see DBDs (daily debriefs) of President Obama actually going back to the summer of 2015… It’s impossible that John McCain did not know about all of the key activities. And it is obvious that the Attorney General would have to know working with the FBI.

This certainly explains John Brennan’s many panicked attacks against President Trump on Twitter.

Via Sunday Morning Futures:

via BOOM! Reporter John Solomon Threatens Lawsuits Against Liberal Media Smear Merchants – Claims Obama, Brennan and Lynch Involved in Spygate Scandal — The Gateway Pundit

Epstein Cover-Up Is Final Nail in The Coffin for Any Last Shred Of Credibility in Mainstream Media | Lew Rockwell

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https://www.lewrockwell.com by Mike Adams

The media long ago abandoned any remaining pillar of journalism in their effort to accomplish two things:

1) Protect the Clintons at all costs.

2) Destroy Trump and his supporters at all costs.

Those two things have driven the media’s entire narrative for at least the last five years (and probably longer).

Now, thanks to a real whistleblower inside ABC News who handed off video to Project Veritas, the whole world can see that ABC News — just like NBC, NYT, WashPost, CNN, MSNBC, etc. — is nothing but an extension of the dishonest, deeply corrupt Democrat party and its war on truth.

COMMENTARY: America, We’ve Been Warned | CBN News

Have you ever heard the phrase, “Don’t say you haven’t been warned”? In a day where false alarms, exaggerated warnings and intentional scare tactics are used by a deceptive culture, it’s sometimes difficult to separate true warnings from deceptive false alarms. So how do you know?

When God warns, it’s real, and we’d better sit up and take notice. In the Bible, the word “woe” or warning is used nearly 100 times—98 to be exact. The Old Testament prophets used it. Christ used it many times Himself. The word occurs in the Book of Revelation in final judgment. In nearly every case where a woe is given, the warning of judgment is certain, and God’s punishment imminent.

For example, Noah warned the people for 100 years of a coming flood. The people heard. They considered. They rejected. They died. God gives us warnings so that we might live.

Then in Isaiah Chapter 5, God’s prophet pronounced six specific warnings of imminent judgment against identified national sins. These woes were sobering, the sins specific and God’s judgment certain. The message was to Israel, but the application is for America.

The first woe identified the sin of materialism. After God blessed the nation with security, wealth, houses and productive land, the people turned their back on Him. The result? God withheld His blessings, removed His protection, allowed rebellion within and threats of attack from without. Does this sound anything like America today?

The second woe is found in Isaiah 5:11, identified the sin of hedonism. Consumed with an intoxicating addiction to alcohol, drugs, entertainment and partying, the nation willfully rejected God and the consequences of evil choices. Again, sound like America?

Thirdly, Isaiah 5:18 identifies the horrible practice of literally promoting sin and evil. Without regard for God or moral truth, the nation dreamed of evil, sinned without remorse and even belittled God by profaning His name and His truth.

Isaiah 5:20 tells of the fourth woe—the sin of moral relativism. Even more dangerous is when a nation redefines moral truth into moral evil. This is accomplished by discarding the Ten Commandments as dangerous, killing the unborn through abortion, redefining marriage between two men or two women, and much more. Have these redefinitions been made in America? Yes—all have!

The fifth woe outlined in Isaiah 5:21 is the sin of arrogance and corruption. God hates pride because it embodies the sin of satanic defiance against God. Through pride, mankind pronounces himself to be God, which results in the rejection of God and eternal life.

Lastly, Isaiah pronounced the sixth woe by identifying the sin of corrupted leadership that is fueled by dependence on alcohol and drug addictions. He warned: Woe unto the political and military leaders who through addiction become bribed and incapable of sound judgment.

What is the result of continually ignoring God’s true warnings? Isaiah 5:24 says that God’s love will be turned to anger, His blessings will turn to judgment, murder and death of the people will increase, enemy nations will threaten to attack—suddenly and overwhelmingly—and all trusted defenses will fail.

It happened to Israel. It will happen to America if we don’t soon change our ways. It’s past time to look to God, repent and beg His mercy.

The similarities of the six woes in Isaiah Chapter 5 and how they relate to America today are astounding. What will we do to heed God’s warnings? Will we claim ignorance and say we were never warned?

While God is full of mercy, His justice will prevail. When God warns, we’d better listen because time eventually runs out. God has been warning America. America doesn’t care. Do you?

(The Hon. Sam Rohrer is president of the American Pastors Network, a national network of pastors with constitutional and biblical teachings that discusses today’s pressing issues. He was a Pennsylvania lawmaker for 18 years and hosts the daily “Stand in the Gap Today” national radio program on more than 400 stations and Host of the “Stand in the Gap” national television program.)

Source: COMMENTARY: America, We’ve Been Warned

The Democrats Have the Country on a Slippery Slope | Paul Craig Roberts

Article Image
https://www.paulcraigroberts.org by Paul Craig Rob

Funny, isn’t it, that only the Republicans want Ciamerella to testify. The Democrats won’t hear of it. https://www.zerohedge.com/political/rand-paul-drops-c-word-names-whistleblower-demands-testimony?utm_campaign=&utm_content=ZeroHedge%3A+The+Durden+Dispatch&utm_medium=email&utm_source=zh_newsletter

If the American people are paying attention, the Democrats are in trouble. When Russiagate fizzled out on them, Adam Schiff (D,CA) orchestrated a fake “whistleblower” who the Democrats cannot risk putting on the stand to testify. The Democrats’ focus shifted to sleazy State Department types who could offer nothing but second or third hand hearsay followed by a hearsay second telephone call that cannot be confirmed.

Why are the Democrats out on a limb like this? They can rely on the presstitutes to cover up for them in every respect and to continue to repeat endlessly without any verification their charges against Trump, but after going through the hoax of Russiagate are the American people stupid enough to fall for the replacement hoax?

Devin Nunes Slams Democrats For Ignoring ‘Blaring Signs Of Corruption’ On Hunter Biden In Ukraine (VIDEO) | American Lookout

Devin Nunes has shown himself to be a fighter in recent years.

This past week, he did even more so.

He went after Democrats for their hypocrisy about Hunter Biden and his cushy arrangement in Ukraine while his father was vice president.

CNS News reports:

Rep. Nunes: Democrats ‘Are Blind to the Blaring Signs of Corruption Surrounding Hunter Biden’s Well-Paid Position’

Rep. Devin Nunes (R.-Calif.), the ranking member of the House intelligence committee, said at the start of today’s impeachment inquiry hearing that committee Democrats “are blind to the blaring signs of corruption surrounding Hunter Biden’s well-paid position on the board of a corrupt Ukrainian company while his father served as vice president and point man for Ukraine issues in the Obama administration.”

Here’s what Nunes said:

After touting the Steele dossier and defending the FBI’s Russia investigation, which are now being investigated by Inspector General Horowitz and Attorney General Barr, Democrats on this committee ignore Ukrainian election meddling, even though (DNC operative Alexandra) Chalupa publicly admitted to the Democrats’ scheme.

Likewise, they are blind to the blaring signs of corruption surrounding Hunter Biden’s well-paid position on the board of a corrupt Ukrainian company while his father served as vice president and point man for Ukraine issues in the Obama administration.

Watch the video:

He was on fire.

Nunes deserves credit for taking this fight to the Democrats.

Other Republicans should follow his lead.

Source: Devin Nunes Slams Democrats For Ignoring ‘Blaring Signs Of Corruption’ On Hunter Biden In Ukraine (VIDEO)

Armageddon Ready (RT Documentary)

Survivalism has a long history in the United States. For decades, concerned citizens have believed some large-scale catastrophe is coming and have been preparing to survive that eventuality. These survivalists, also known as ‘doomsday preppers’, argue YOYO: ‘You’re On Your Own’.

Headlines – 11/17/2019

Pompeo: Iran using Islamic Jihad to strike at Israel

Hamas, Islamic Jihad put on show of reconciliation after clash at mourning tent

Palestinian Rockets, Israeli Airstrikes Jolt Tenuous Gaza Truce

Hamas leader: We create rockets from Gush Katif water pipes

Peretz, Lapid say Hamas rocket fire shows failure of government’s Gaza policies

Netanyahu tells Likud Gantz is going for ‘insane’ minority government backed by Arabs

Netanyahu Warns of ‘Unprecedented Emergency’ if Gantz Forms Government Backed by Arab Party

Netanyahu in message to Blue and White: Minority government would pose existential risk to Israel

US Air Force chief in Israel: ‘We’ll always stand shoulder to shoulder with you’

Jordanian king, prince visit and pray at second enclave returned by Israel

Cyprus police say they seized Israeli ‘spy van,’ question owner

Israelis increasingly getting tattoos that bind them to ancestors’ old countries

Iran says it will increase range of cruise missiles, add laser air defense

Iran in ‘near-total national internet shutdown’ amid ongoing protests

Footage spotlights rare protests in major Iranian cities over gas prices

Iran warns security forces may act against petrol price rise protests

Pompeo says US stands with Iranian protesters

Iraq closes southern border with Iran to travelers: Sources

Lebanon’s Safadi withdraws candidacy to be next Prime Minister: Reports

Lebanese Police to Boost Security Near Banks Amid Unrest

US embassy in Lebanon ‘supports’ peaceful protests

Car Bomb Kills at Least 18 in Syrian Town Held by Turkey

Turkey says will use Russian S-400 defense system despite US threat of sanctions

Mainland Chinese Soldiers Take to Hong Kong Streets for First Time During Protests

Hong Kong protesters unleash stash of petrol bombs; Chinese soldiers clear roads

Hong Kong ‘did not request’ help of Chinese troops in clean-up: Gov

Czech anti-government protesters mark anniversary of revolution

Paris police fire tear gas on ‘yellow vest’ protests anniversary

UK government and military accused of war crimes cover-up

UK PM Johnson says all Conservative election candidates pledge to back his Brexit deal

8 Killed In Bolivia As Protesters Call For Return of Ousted President Evo Morales

Venezuelans March in Biggest Anti-Maduro Protest in Months

Nearly 80,000 immigrants approved for DACA have arrest records, USCIS report finds

Trump impeachment: White House budget official defies president to testify on withholding Ukraine military aid

Aide testifies Sondland told Trump that Zelensky would ‘do anything you ask him to’

Report: Trump directed pressure on Ukraine during White House Hanukkah party

Pence adviser says Trump request that Ukraine open Biden probe was ‘unusual and inappropriate’

Attorney General Barr accuses the left of systemic ‘sabotage’ of Trump administration

Mark Levin calls impeachment inquiry an ‘outrageous violation of the Constitution’

Reps. Biggs and Hice: Trump impeachment effort may be abandoned by House Democrats fearing election losses

With Dow, S&P 500 at record highs, investors are ignoring a ‘material deterioration’ in the global economy

China, US push global debt towards record US$255 trillion as trade war continues to impact global economy

5.8 magnitude earthquake hits near Bitung, Indonesia

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Mohean, India

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Enarotali, Indonesia

Strong earthquake swarm in Iceland’s Reykjanes volcano

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 24,000ft

Sangay volcano in Ecuador erupts to 22,000ft

Popocateptl volcano in Mexico erupts to 21,000ft

Reventador volcano in Ecuador erupts to 15,000ft

Sakurajima volcano on Japan erupts to 12,000ft

Nevados De Chillan volcano in Chile erupts to 12,000ft

Ebeko volcano in the Kuril Islands erupts to 10,000ft

Tropical Storm “Kalmaegi” (Ramon) triggers floods and landslides ahead of landfall, Philippines

‘Bomb cyclone’ over Russian Far East to dump heavy snow to Japan

Devastated Venice braced for third major flood

Italian council is flooded immediately after rejecting measures on climate change

Bushfires conditions worsen in east and west Australia

Sprite Launches Pro-LGBT Ad Campaign in Argentina

‘Man Made’ views the transgender experience through a bodybuilding lens

Vatican youth seminary scandal grows with new abuse claims

Pope Francis says today’s ‘culture of hate’ reminds him of the days of Hitler


Source: http://trackingbibleprophecy.org/birthpangs.php

17 Dec 2019 – Rapture Ready News

New Legislation Will Throw People In Jail For Disrespecting Cops
Telling people what words they can and can’t say or which fingers they can raise, to ‘protect’ a cop’s feelings is chilling. Freedom of speech does not come with terms and conditions…

Democrats hold on to Louisiana governor’s seat despite Trump
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards has stunned Republicans again, narrowly winning a second term Saturday as the Deep South’s only Democratic governor and handing Donald Trump another gubernatorial loss this year.

Germany Mandates Measles Vaccine for Children — Parents Who Don’t Comply Can Be Fined More Than $2,500
Parents in Germany will now be legally required to vaccinate their school-age children against measles — or risk paying hefty fines.

Pope compares politicians who rage against gays to Hitler
Pope Francis said on Friday politicians who rage against homosexuals, gypsies and Jews remind him of Hitler.

Lighting strikes kill 26 in Pakistan’s Sindh province
Karachi : As many as 26 people, including women and children, were killed in Pakistan’s Sindh province due to lightning following heavy rains.

Flooded Venice battles new tidal surge
Flooded Venice has been hit by a new high tide of 154cm (5ft), giving residents no respite from a crisis costing Italy millions of euros.

Pew: Democrats Viewed as Much More ‘Unfriendly’ to Religion than GOP
More than twice as many Americans view the Democrat Party as “unfriendly” toward religion than the Republican Party, with fewer than one in five U.S. adults saying the Democrats are “friendly” toward religion, the Pew Research Center reported Friday.

Hollywood Actor Will Ferrell Has Made A Career Of Mocking Jesus Christ And The Bible, Presenting Sexually-Themed Abuse Of Children For Sport And Promoting Satanism
…Today we will show you the predatory and pedophilic nature of Hollywood in general, as well uncover for you the satanic and ritual abuse themes in the ‘comedy’ of one of the biggest stars in Hollywood, Will Ferrell. As it turns out, it’s not all fun and games, there is an agenda and a message, and we will decode and show that to you today.

Watch As Star Of The Roman Catholic ‘Passion Of The Christ’ Jim Caviezel Calls On Pope Francis To Affirm Mary To Be The Co-Redemptrix Of All Humanity
Heresy is heresy, and having a silver tongue and an acting degree with which to speak it does in no way lessen the heretical nature of what is being said.

Exposing The Brennan Dossier: All About A Prime Mover Of Russiagate
The Barr-Durham probe is set to determine, among other things, whether Brennan’s actions and faulty information amounted to incompetence or something considerably worse…

Source: 17 Dec 2019

Al Sharpton’s ‘charity’ paid him over a million dollars last year

We taxpayers are underwriting Al Sharpton’s million-dollar pay for ostensibly charitable work with tax deduction subsidies for donors to his National Action Network.

Source: Al Sharpton’s ‘charity’ paid him over a million dollars last year

The Bidens and Burisma — American Thinker

The media have been working overtime to convince the American public that there was absolutely nothing wrong here.

 

Mykola Zlochevsky is the (allegedly) corrupt owner of Burisma Holdings, a Ukrainian natural gas provider.  Hunter Biden accepted a position on the board of directors with Burisma in April of 2014.  By August of the same year, Vitaly Yurema, prosecutor general of Ukraine at the time, opened an official investigation of Zlochevsky and Burisma.  By February 2015, Yurema had been replaced by a man named Viktor Shokin.  Only four months later, U.S. ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt allegedly warned Shokin to “handle the Biden investigation with kid gloves.”

Apparently Shokin didn’t listen so good, or maybe Pyatt didn’t tell him eight or nine times that he was supposed to clear Burisma and Hunter Biden of any potential wrongdoing.  In either event, Joe Biden wasn’t happy, because in March of 2016, he threatened to withhold $1 billion in U.S. foreign aid to Ukraine unless Shokin was fired within the next six hours.  How do we know this?  Why, Joe told us himself.

Biden had the audacity to brag about it during a speech to the Council on Foreign Relations.  He boasted, “[I told the Ukrainians,] ‘You’re not getting the billion.  I’m gonna be leaving here in six hours, and if the prosecutor [Shokin] is not fired, you’re not getting the money.  Well, son of a b—-, he got fired.  And they put in place someone who was solid.”

Who was Shokin’s “solid” replacement?  Yuriy Lutsenko, who subsequently declared there was “no evidence of wrongdoing” by the Bidens and closed the investigation only ten months after taking over the job.  According to Lutsenko, there isn’t a law against a company paying a board member more than fifty thousand dollars a month (CNBC claims that it was $83,000 per month) to a man who knew nothing about the energy business, doesn’t speak the language, and never even set foot in the country to attend a couple of board meetings in Europe each year.

The evidence is indisputably clear and incontrovertible, in the form of a videotaped confession to an audience at the Council on Foreign Relations.  One billion dollars in U.S. aid (quid) was offered on condition (pro) that Shokin, the prosecutor allegedly investigating Burisma, be fired (quo).  The replacement clears the case.

Cui bono?  Who benefits?  Lutsenko gets a plum job.  The Ukrainian government gets another billion dollars in U.S. foreign aid.  Hunter Biden gets three million bucks for about a week’s worth of work spread over five years.  Joe Biden gets the benefit of having Hunter’s corrupt business deal swept under the rug.  Everybody wins…except the U.S. taxpayer, of course.

The American people have been asked to believe that Joe Biden demanded that Shokin be fired because he wasn’t aggressively investigating Burisma.  We have been told there is nothing wrong or unusual about an American citizen who happens to be the son of a powerful politician being paid millions of dollars by a foreign business with economic and political interests directly related to the United States for essentially a “do-nothing” job.  We the people are expected to believe that the actions (and specific threats) of Hunter Biden’s influential and politically connected father had nothing at all to do with shutting down the investigation of Burisma.

Frankly, it is ludicrous even to suggest that Joe Biden wanted Burisma investigated more thoroughly, because if that was true, why didn’t he complain when Lutsenko shut down the investigation only ten months after Shokin had been fired?

How stupid do the liberal media elitists think we are?  Laughably, the legal eagles at the NYU School of Law would have us believe that Biden was on an “anti-corruption” campaign against Ukraine that may have harmed his son’s company.  Try this thought experiment: change the name of the people involved from “Biden” to “Trump,” and simply imagine what the headlines would be if Donald Trump had threatened to withhold foreign aid from Ukraine to keep Eric Trump from being investigated for corruption.  Pundits wouldn’t just be clamoring for Trump’s impeachment; they would probably be calling for his public execution, clamoring to hang him for treason or perhaps even to burn him at the stake.

Yet the media have been working overtime to convince the American public that there was absolutely nothing wrong with Hunter Biden “earning” millions of dollars from a Ukrainian company without even setting foot in Ukraine.  Reuters reported that “[Rudy] Giuliani has alleged, without providing evidence, that Joe Biden pushed for the firing of Ukraine’s top prosecutor to end an investigation into Burisma and Zlochevsky in order to protect his son.”  FactCheck.org, Bloomberg, and pretty much all the other lamestream media outlets all reported that there was nothing illegal, wrong, or improper about Hunter Biden getting paid $83,000 per month to do nothing by a foreign company being investigated for corruption that involves the theft of U.S. foreign aid money.  Nothing to see here; move along.

Which part of the allegation was not supported by evidence?  Joe Biden claimed that he not only pushed for the firing of Shokin, but absolutely insisted upon it and threatened to withhold U.S. foreign aid unless his demands were immediately met.  Biden didn’t specifically give a reason for why he wanted the prosecutor fired, but is it easier to believe that he was trying to find corruption in the company paying his son millions of dollars to do nothing or that he wanted to protect his son and the income stream produced by that corrupt company?  Biden’s defenders have claimed that Shokin himself was corrupt and not investigating Burisma, but the fact is that Joe Biden’s preferred choice, Yuriy Lutsenko, shut down the investigation and cleared everybody involved without solving the mystery of the missing foreign aid money.

Why does Burisma need to be investigated?  Deputy assistant secretary of state George Kent just testified in the so-called impeachment hearings that Zlochevsky and Burisma need to be investigated because they had stolen billions of dollars and possibly bribed a prosecutor to shut down the investigation that dated back to the period when Zlochevsky served as minister of ecology and natural resources and gave his own business government licenses and contracts.

Yet, astonishingly, Daria Kaleniuk, executive director of an alleged Ukrainian “Anti-Corruption Action Center,” made an extraordinary claim to Radio Free Europe: “ironically, Joe Biden asked Shokin to leave because the prosecutor failed to pursue the Burisma investigation, not because Shokin was tough and active with the case.”

Okay, so everybody wants us to believe that Shokin wasn’t tough enough or doing the job…but who in his right mind would claim that Lutsenko is any tougher?

John Leonard writes novels, books, and the occasional article for American Thinker.  John also blogs at his website southernprose.com, where he may be contacted.

Image: Marc Nozell via Flickr.

via The Bidens and Burisma — American Thinker

November 17 The Ability to Worship

scripture reading: John 4
key verse: Psalm 66:1

Make a joyful shout to God, all the earth!

In his book Worship: The Missing Jewel of the Evangelical Church, A. W. Tozer wrote of the urgency for God’s people to grasp the importance of devoted, passionate praise of our Savior:

We have almost everything, but there’s one thing that the churches do not have: that is the ability to worship. It’s the one, shining gem that is lost to the modern church.…

Now what are the factors that you will find present in worship? First there is boundless confidence. You cannot worship a being you cannot trust.… Worship rises or falls in any church altogether depending upon the attitude we take toward God, whether we see God big or whether we see Him little. Most of us see God too small; our God is too little.

David said: “O magnify the Lord with me,” and magnify doesn’t mean to make God big. You can’t make God big. But you can see Him big.

Then there is admiration, that is appreciation of the excellency of God.… This admiration for God grows and grows. The God of the modern evangelical rarely astonishes anybody.… But when the Holy Ghost shows us God as He is, we admire Him to the point of wonder and delight.

I magnify You, Lord. You are great. You are unlimited; there is nothing too difficult for You. You are excellent. You are my God![1]

 

[1] Stanley, C. F. (1998). Enter His gates: a daily devotional. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

YouTube To Delete All Accounts That Aren’t “Commercially Viable” Starting Dec. 10th | Zero Hedge

Article Image
https://www.zerohedge.com, by Tyler Durden

Authored by Ethan Huff via Natural News,

Content creators everywhere are starting to panic about an upcoming policy change over at YouTube that threatens to eliminate all accounts and channels on the Google-owned video platform that are deemed to no longer be “commercially viable.”

In the “Account Suspension & Termination” section of YouTube’s “Terminations by YouTube for Service Changes,” guidelines, the company explains that, as of December 10, 2019, “YouTube may terminate your access, or your Google account’s access to all or part of the Service, if YouTube believes, in its sole discretion, that provision of the Service to you is no longer commercially viable.”

In other words, if you have a YouTube channel that YouTube employees decide isn’t profitable enough for Google, then the company has now granted itself the option to completely shut down your account without warning or consequence.

‘It’s a very unusual time’: The stock market just triggered a flurry of under-the-radar signals that have experts worried a painful meltdown could soon strike | Business Insider

Reuters / Stringer

  • Several indicators in the options and volatility markets suggest that investors have grown complacent amid the stock market’s rally to all-time highs.
  • Sundial Capital Research recently crunched four of these indicators, concluded that they are concerning, and explained why volatility could soon strike again.
  • Click here for more BI Prime stories.

With US stocks trading at all-time highs, it is possible to miss some of the less-obvious warning signs of danger ahead.

After all, investors have a lot going for them. The Federal Reserve has shown its willingness to course-correct and enact policies that extend the record economic expansion for as long as possible. And the rest of America is better off for it, from consumers who are keeping their purses open to public companies that just delivered stronger-than-expected earnings growth in the third quarter.

Several indicators in the derivatives market show that investors expect the good times to last. However, their positioning unearths two unsavory implications: complacency has gripped the market, and history suggests that volatility could suddenly rebound after a dull stretch. Both could lead to losses for traders who have wagered on higher prices.

“It’s a very unusual time of no stress,” said Jim Carney, the CEO of Parplus Partners, a hedge fund that specializes in volatility trading.

He added, “I’m used to some pressure my entire life, but there’s no pressure in the market. Just skittishness; just tweets — little annoyances, but no pressure.

He told Business Insider that he sees a “bubble” in the selling of call and put options. This strategy is popular and profitable when the market is rising because it wagers on further gains. But it can also implode when volatility spikes — as it did last February when exchange-traded products that facilitated the sale of options got wrecked.

Carney doesn’t know when volatility will reverse its current trend. He only knows for sure that it will.

A recent note from Jason Goepfert, the president of Sundial Capital Research, showed that this spike could come within the next two months if history is a guide.

This conclusion was based on a study of four volatility and options-market indicators. Here’s the list, and what each means:

1. 10-day Put/Call Ratio

Investors’ bets in the options market that stocks will fall are far fewer than their bullish wagers. The 10-day moving average of the CBOE Equity Put/Call Ratio recently fell to its lowest level since last October. Besides signaling that bearish bets are scarce, a lower ratio could signal complacency.

2. S&P 500’s put-call skew

Another possible sign of complacency can be found in the S&P 500’s put-call skew, a gauge of the prevailing demand for portfolio protection. Amid signs of progress in the US’ trade war with China, investors are no longer splurging on insurance.

The skew, or gap between the premium that investors pay for bearish options over bullish ones, has tumbled below its average levels and is close to its 2019 lows, according to Bloomberg data.

3. VIX hedger position

Hedge funds are betting big that volatility will remain low. This has pushed net-short positions on the CBOE Volatility Index (or VIX) above 200,000 for the first time on record, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission through November 5.

4. VIX term structure

Meanwhile, another corner of the market shows that some investors are gearing up to profit from higher volatility. The price of the four-month VIX contract relative to its two-month equivalent is at the highest since January 2018. This gap implies that traders are bracing for rockier markets at some point.

A ‘good bet’ volatility will jump

Goepfert took these individual gauges and measured them as a percentage of their one-year ranges. His finding, illustrated in the chart below, was that they are all unusually low.

“Since 2007, no other time has seen all four of them so compressed at the same time,” Goepfert said.

With one exception since 2007, the VIX has spiked by more than 50% on average two months after these readings nearly hit rock-bottom, he added.

“It doesn’t necessarily mean stocks will decline, but it does seem to be a good bet that at some point the VIX will jump.”

Investors who are thinking ahead about the next episode of market volatility should avoid exchange-traded funds that would profit from a higher VIX, Goepfert said. That’s because no one can nail down the market’s timing with precision.

“Instead of betting specifically on a rise in the VIX, it has helped to simply buffer one’s portfolio with cash to dampen the (usually temporary) shock that is likely to hit at some point in the coming month(s),” Goepfert said.

Source: ‘It’s a very unusual time’: The stock market just triggered a flurry of under-the-radar signals that have experts worried a painful meltdown could soon strike

Sunday’s Hymn: A Wonderful Savior Is Jesus My Lord — Rebecca Writes

 

A wonderful Saviour is Jesus my Lord,
A wonderful Saviour to me,
He hideth my soul in the cleft of the rock,
Where rivers of pleasure I see.

He hideth my soul in the cleft of the rock
That shadows a dry, thirsty land;
He hideth my life in the depths of his love,
And covers me there with his hand.

A wonderful Saviour is Jesus my Lord,
He taketh my burden away,
He holdeth me up, and I shall not be moved,
He giveth me strength as my day.

With numberless blessings each moment he crowns,
And filled with a fullness divine,
I sing in my rapture, O glory to God
For such a Redeemer as mine!

When clothed in his brightness, transported I rise
To meet him in clouds of the sky,
His perfect salvation, his wonderful love,
I’ll shout with the millions on high.

—Fanny Crosby

 

Other hymns, worship songs, or quotes for this Sunday:

via Sunday’s Hymn: A Wonderful Savior Is Jesus My Lord — Rebecca Writes