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   It has been noted that there haven’t been that many being baptized lately. This is especially true when we think of 3000 being baptized in one day. We read of this when the Apostle Peter spoke to those during Pentecost when the Spirit was being first offered.
   And with many other words he solemnly testified and kept on exhorting them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation!” So then, those who had received His word were baptized; and that day there were added about three thousand souls. They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer, Acts 2:40–42. (New American Standard Version used throughout unless noted otherwise.)
   There is certainly a lack of enthusiasm today among most people, but we trust this will change in the end. We find that once the last saint is sealed in Yahweh and Yahshua’s Name (Rev 14:1) the tribulation will begin in earnest:
   After this I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds of the earth, so that no wind would blow on the earth or on the sea or on any tree. And I saw another angel ascending from the rising of the sun, having the seal of the living Elohim; and he cried out with a loud voice to the four angels to whom it was granted to harm the earth and the sea, saying, “Do not harm the earth or the sea or the trees until we have sealed the bond-servants of our Elohim on their foreheads,” Rev.7:1–3.
   Scripture, however, informs us that there will be a famine of the Word before the tribulation.
   Behold, the days come, saith the Yahweh Elohim, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Yahweh, Amos 8:11.
   It could be asked, “Aren’t we teaching sound doctrine?” The problem is not that the teachings are not available, but rather most people today do not seek the true teachings of Yahweh as they should. So many distortions now occur with all of the false religious outlets that it is truly confusing even for someone searching for truth.

Taken Away
   People today are bombarded with “information overload.” Those who have lived for 80 or 90 years can see that one of the most astounding things is the technological advances that promote knowledge. From the radio to television and the recent invention of computers and the internet, for example, allow information of just about any kind to be accessed. Knowledge is rapidly increasing. This, too, was prophesied:
  But as for you, Daniel, conceal these words and seal up the book until the end of time; many will go back and forth, and knowledge will increase, Daniel 12:4.
  Certainly, all will agree that there has been an increase in knowledge. This has also caused a problem, however. The problem, inherited with the increased avenues of knowledge, is that many are taken in different directions. Many don’t find time to study an old book like the Bible, leaving it behind.
  Mega-churches bring in millions of dollars annually, but the congregations aren’t challenged to study. There are Bible study programs that make it easy to dig into the Bible, but many are pulled away from doing such studying. “After all,” many will say, “that’s the minister’s job.”
  Bible programs sit on the shelf, so to speak, while the internet is surfed or the television is turned on for some entertainment. It’s a serious problem, one that will only get worse before it gets better.

A Wake-Up Call
   Many who believe they will be “raptured” when tribulation comes will find themselves alarmed when they aren’t raised up out of harm’s way. It will be a time of confusion, but it will also be a time when people can wake up. There will, though, be those who will not repent even under such circumstances:
  And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the Name of Elohim, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give Him glory, Revelation 16:9, KJV 1900.
  The good news is there will also be those who will be awakened out of their slumber and come to an understanding and repentance:
  After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; and cried with a loud voice, saying, “Salvation to our Elohim which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.” And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped Elohim, Saying, “Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our Elohim for ever and ever. Amen.” And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, “What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they?” And I said unto him, “Sir, thou knowest.” And he said to me, “These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb,” Revelation 7:9-14, KJV 1900.

Time Is Short
   As we see the “signs of the times,” we are to draw even closer to Yahweh through His Son Yahshua in prayer and in the study of His Word. We must follow the Spirit as did the Messiah, so we may enter into eternal life.
  In Matthew 24:4, Yahshua, in answering the disciples about what would be the sign of His return and the end of the age, starts out saying, “…Take heed that no man deceive you…” The NASB says, “…See to it that no one misleads you…” The NVC says, “…Be careful that no one fools you…”
  The point is, watch out! Watch that you’re not taken in by men who deceive, mislead, and try to fool you with their cunning and crooked ways. Remember, this is prophesied to happen.
  Take time to read Matthew 24 and put it next to what is said about the “Four Horsemen” of Revelation. False Messiahs, war, famine, and death can be seen in Matthew chapter 24 and Revelation chapter 6.

The Work Must Go On
   The work that Yahweh has given us to do will most likely change during the tribulation. Collectively, as an Assembly, we teach via the internet, magazines, booklets, mini-studies, etc. We reply to questions by mail and telephone.
  During the tribulation, however, many of these things probably won’t be available. Internet service, which so many have become accustomed to, will most likely be non-existent once the tribulation takes hold worldwide.
  The one thing that will not be stopped is Yahweh’s people being moved by Yahweh’s Spirit. His people will teach what they have studied and come to know as truth. The latter rain, or outpouring of Yahweh’s Spirit, will certainly help. Yet, consider the trouble ahead of us with the anti-messiah’s influence:
He (the anti-messiah) will flatter those who have violated the covenant and win them over to his side. But the people who know their Elohim will be strong and will resist him. Those who are wise will give instruction to many. But for a time many of these teachers will die by fire and sword, or they will be jailed and robbed. While all these persecutions are going on, a little help will arrive, though many who join them will not be sincere. And some who are wise will fall victim to persecution. In this way, they will be refined and cleansed and made pure until the time of the end, for the appointed time is still to come, Daniel 11:32-35, NLT.
  As verse 35 tells us, “the appointed time is still to come.” We do believe that Yahshua will return on a moed, such as the Feast of Trumpets.
  Will we prepare now to learn what this and the rest of the Feasts teach? Will we be ready to step out on faith in the future to teach of the coming Kingdom of Yahweh and His Messiah? Will we submit to Him and His ways found in the laws written down for us? Will we do this now, and will we do it later? Let’s pray that we do, for the famine of the True Words of Yahweh has already started, but with it, there is still the EliYah Spirit in today’s wilderness crying out, “Repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

-Elder David Brett

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