>> UPDATE: Bernanke warns lawmakers country headed for ‘massive fiscal cliff’

Just how much danger is America in economically and spiritually? Are we facing decline, or outright collapse? Can we turn our ship of state around before we hit the icebergs ahead, or are we on the Titanic and going full steam ahead? On June 12th, my new non-fiction book releases nationwide. It’s titled, Implosion: Can America Recover From Its Economic And Spiritual Challenges In Time? On Saturday, June 16th, we’ll host a live nationwide simulcast to discuss these urgent questions, consider the research in Implosion, explore the history of the Great Awakening and the Second Great Awakening that saved America from disaster in the 18th and 19th centuries, and discuss the possibility of a Third Great Awakening. I hope you and your church will register for this national simulcast, but since the issues are so important and the stakes are so high I don’t want to wait until June to draw attention to them. So from time to time I’m going to post “Implosion Updates” with links to news stories I think you should be aware of. Some will be stories about the threats. Some will be stories that offer positive stories and signs of encouragment. My hope is that you will not only read these updates, but share them with others. May they motivate you and your family and friends to pray and fast for the Lord to have mercy on America and to unleash the magnitude of spiritual and moral revivals we need from coast to coast to save our nation and protect us from disaster. “If My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)


UPDATE: Iran ready to wipe Israel off the map — Tehran’s deputy defense minister warns Jerusalem against strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities, says ‘any action by Zionist regime will bring about its destruction’


Make no mistake: the Russian-Iranian strategic alliance that I’ve been writing about for the last several years has deepened to the point where Moscow is now unequivocally and quite openly backing the mullahs in Iran. “Russia warned Israel on Wednesday that attacking Iran would be a disastrous and played down the failure of a U.N. nuclear agency mission to Tehran, saying there is still a chance for new talks over the Iranian atomic programme,” reports Reuters. “‘Of course any possible military scenario against Iran will be catastrophic for the region and for the whole system of international relations,’ Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov told a news conference. It was one of Russia’s starkest warnings against resorting to force, an option Israel and the United States have not ruled out if they conclude that diplomacy and increasing sanctions will not stop Iran from developing a nuclear bomb. ‘I hope Israel understands all these consequences … and they should also consider the consequences of such action for themselves,’ Gatilov said. ‘I hope a realistic approach will prevail, along with a sensible assessment.'”

The big question now is this: Will Vladimir Putin win his bid for become Russia’s President again during the March 4 elections, and would Putin then directly threaten Israel with retaliation for an attack on Iran? So far, Russia hasn’t gone so far as to threaten a military response, but it’s not out of the question. The latest poll shows Putin in a commanding lead to regain the presidency, with 58.6% support, compared to Gennady Zyuganov, the head of the Communist Party, who has 14.8% support. And Putin in recent years seems itching to rebuild the Russian military (something he promised again just this week — he’s called for a $770 billion upgrade of Russia’s military), strengthen his alliances throughout the Islamic world, and give the West a black eye. He’s explicitly running his campaign on anti-Americanism, for example. He’s close to the Iranians. He’s defending the Bashar al-Assad, the butcher in Damascus. He’s growing closer to the Turks, as they become hostile to Israel. Putin hasn’t directly threatened Israel, but he’s backing all of Israel’s worst enemies and could find himself drawn into a war to prove his alpha-dog machismo.

Another question I’m getting asked these days: Is Putin “Gog,” the evil leader described in the prophecies of Ezekiel 38-39? It came up during my recent speaking tour in Florida, and in a talk I gave to a group on Capitol Hill last week? Thus far, my answer remains the same — Putin is certainly “Gog-esque,” but it is too early to speculate on whether he is actually the biblical figure that will rise to power in Russia (known in Ezekiel’s prophecy as “Magog”) in the last days and build an alliance with Iran (“Persia”), Sudan (“Cush”), Turkey (“Gomer”), Libya and Algeria (“Put”), the countries of Central Asia (“Beth Togarmah”) to attack the State of Israel from “the north” (probably via Lebanon and Syria). That said, it is fair to say that geopolitical events over the past decade — and certainly over the past year or so — have been moving on a trajectory consistent with the fulfillment of Ezekiel 38-39. That doesn’t necessarily mean we will see the prophecies come to complete fulfillment in our lifetime or soon, but we cannot rule out the possibility.

For the moment, the major need is to keep mobilizing people to pray for the peace of Jerusalem, and to keep asking that the Lord to help us get ready for the next war that comes, be that a really bad geopolitical war (ie, an Israeli first strike on Iran, or vice versa), or a prophetic war (ie, the War of Gog and Magog). One way or the other, it would seem that war is coming. The handwriting seems to be on the wall. Dare we allow ourselves to be unprepared?



>> To help The Joshua Fund educate and mobilize Christians to stand with Israel — and to help TJF prepare for a possible major war in the epicenter — please click here.

President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu are scheduled to meet at the White House for talks on March 5. Netanyahu is also expected to address the annual AIPAC policy conference and hold other meetings with senior Congressional officials. The big question for Obama appears to be: When is Israel planning to hit Iran, and is there any way the White House can stop Netanyahu from launching preemptive air strikes? That is precisely the wrong question, however. The American President should be asking: How can the U.S. help Israel stop Iran without a full scale war, and if such a war is needed, how can we work together to win quickly and decisively and make the world safer?

Now comes a new challenge: senior Iranian officials are threatening to launch preemptive missile strikes against Israel anda wave of suicide bombing attacks the U.S. Yet the Obama administration continues to act as though Israel is the real problem, not Iran. “A senior Iranian military commander signaled the Islamic Republic might launch a pre-emptive strike against its ‘enemies’ if the nation’s leaders felt an attack on Iran was imminent, providing another example of ever-escalating tensions between Tehran and the West over its nuclear program,” reports the Associated Press. “In a clear shot across the bow, the deputy head of Iran’s armed forces, Mohammad Hejazi, told state media on Tuesday: ‘Our strategy now is that if we feel our enemies want to endanger Iran’s national interests, and want to decide to do that, we will act without waiting for their actions,’ according to the Reuters news agency….American officials have pressed Israel in recent days to delay any strike on Iran, fearing the resulting instability in the region could outweigh an attempt to disable Iran’s nuclear facilities. The official news agency IRNA said the four-day air defense war games, dubbed ‘Sarallah,’ or ‘God’s Revenge,’ were taking place in the south of the country and involve anti-aircraft batteries, radar, and warplanes. The drill will be held over 73,000 square miles near the port of Bushehr, the site of Iran’s lone nuclear power plant. Iran has held multiple air, land, and sea maneuvers in recent months as the tensions increase.”




The butchery of the Assad regime is horrifying to behold. More than 6,000 Syrians have been brutally murdered by the thugs in Damascus. The evil Assad government must be brought down and brought to justice, or face judgment.

Bible prophecy tells us in Isaiah 17:1-3 and Jeremiah 49:23-27 that Damascus will be destroyed as a city in the last days. Scripture doesn’t tell us exactly when or how this will happen, but I believe that day is steadily approaching. Indeed, it may not be far off. I’m currently writing a political thriller called The Damascus Countdown about how this could play out.

In the meantime, followers of Jesus Christ around the world must be praying and working for the spiritual and political liberation of the Syrian people. We need to be praying and working to strengthen the persecuted Church in Syria, and to help believers there spread of the Gospel to every person in that precious country. Make no mistake: God loves the people of Syria. The Apostle Paul came to faith in Jesus Christ on the road to Damascus. Believers were first called “Christians” in Antioch, Syria. And our God and Father wants every Syrian to receive Jesus as Savior and Lord. We need to act now and share the good news with Syria before judgment comes. For God is not going to allow this current evil to go unchecked much longer. In Genesis 12:1-3, the Lord told us that those who bless the children of Israel will be blessed, and those who cursed them will be cursed. The Syrian government faces judgment for killing its own citizens, but also for killing so many Jews and Israelis over the years, and cursing the State of Israel on a daily basis.

Meanwhile, since we don’t know when the judgment of Syria’s government will happen, the U.S. government — and our allies — can and must take decisive steps to stand with and for the people of Syria against the Assad regime. This past week, 58 foreign policy experts urged President Obama to take strong, specific action. Among their recommendations:

  • Immediately establish safe zones within Syrian territory, as well as no-go zones for the Assad regime’s military and security forces, around Homs, Idlib, and other threatened areas, in order to protect Syrian civilians.  To the extent possible, the United States should work with like-minded countries like Turkey and members of the Arab League in these efforts.
  • Establish contacts with the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and, in conjunction with allies in the Middle East and Europe, provide a full range of direct assistance, including self-defense aid to the FSA.
  • Improve U.S. coordination with political opposition groups and provide them with secure communications technologies and other assistance that will help to improve their ability to prepare for a post-Assad Syria.
  • Work with Congress to impose crippling U.S. and multilateral sanctions on the Syrian government, especially on Syria’s energy, banking, and shipping sectors.

The experts noted: “For eleven months now, the Syrian people have been dying on a daily basis at the hands of their government as they seek to topple the brutal regime of Bashar al-Assad.  As the recent events in the city of Homs—in which hundreds of Syrians have been killed in a matter of days—have shown, Assad will stop at nothing to maintain his grip on power. Given the United Nations Security Council’s recent failure to act, we believe that the United States cannot continue to defer its strategic and moral responsibilities in Syria to regional actors such as the Arab League, or to wait for consent from the Assad regime’s protectors, Russia and China.  We therefore urge you to take immediate steps to decisively halt the Assad regime’s atrocities against Syrian civilians, and to hasten the emergence of a post-Assad government in Syria. Syria’s future is not purely a humanitarian concern.  The Assad regime poses a grave threat to national security interests of the United States.  The Syrian government, which has been on the State Department’s State Sponsors of Terrorism list since 1979, maintains a strategic partnership with the terror-sponsoring government of Iran, as well as with Hamas and Hezbollah.  For years, it facilitated the entry of foreign fighters into Iraq who killed American troops.  For years, it secretly pursued a nuclear program with North Korea’s assistance.  And for decades, it has closely cooperated with Iran and other agents of violence and instability to menace America’s allies and partners throughout the Middle East….The Syrian people are asking for international assistance.  It is apparent that American leadership is required to ensure the quickest end to the Assad regime’s brutal reign, and to clearly show the Syrian people that, as you said on February 4, 2012, the people of the free world stand with them as they seek to realize their aspirations.”

I agree. Time is running out, according to Bible prophecy. Now is the time for the free world to speak out, and act decisively. Now is also the time for followers of Jesus Christ to do our part.

The Joshua Fund has invested more than half-a-million dollars in recent years to spread the Gospel through Syria. We have helped produce and distribute some 440,000 copies of the evangelistic film called “Damascus.” We have helped fund the printing of New Testaments in Arabic for Syria, and have assisted key Christian leaders inside that beautiful country. Please prayerfully stand with us as we seek to be faithful to Christ and His love for Syrians at this critical time. God bless you, and the people of Syria.

“The news about Him [Jesus Christ] spread throughout all Syria; and they brought to Him all who were ill, those suffering with various diseases and pains, demoniacs, epileptics, paralytics; and He healed them.” (Matthew 4:24)

LIKELIHOOD OF ISRAEL-IRAN WAR GROWING: Some analysts say spring, others see Sept-Oct as “sweet spot”

The debate seems increasingly to be over “when,” not “if” Israel will launch preemptive strikes against Iran. A story in a major British newspaper today reports the Obama administration realizes that economic sanctions aren’t working well enough to stop Iran from vigorously pursuing nuclear weapons, and thus makes an Israeli war with Iran all the more likely. According to the story, some experts believe that the Israelis won’t strike in the April to June window suggested by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, but might wait until the fall during the height of the U.S. presidential elections. “Earlier this month, the US defence secretary, Leon Panetta, told the Washington Post that he thought the window for an Israeli attack on Iran is between April and June,” the story noted. “But other official analysts working on Iran have identified what one described as a ‘sweet spot,’ where the mix of diplomacy, political timetables and practical issues come together to suggest that if Israel launches a unilateral assault it is more likely in September or October, although they describe that as a ‘best guess.'” Expect more speculation — and even disinformation — to keep the “experts” guessing. Should Israel strike, it will be hard, fast and without notice.

SUICIDE BOMBER ARRESTED EN ROUTE TO U.S. CAPITOL: Real life, or the plot of a political thriller?

My oldest son, Caleb, and I were on Capitol Hill this morning. We met with several Members of Congress who wanted to discuss the threats posed by Radical Islam to the U.S. and our allies; Bible prophecy in light of current events in Israel, Iran and Syria; and how the plots in my novels are paralleling current events. Now we have learned that even as we were discussing such issues, the FBI was arresting a Muslim man plotting a suicide bombing mission in Washington, D.C.

“Authorities have arrested a man allegedly on his way  to the U.S. Capitol for what he thought would be a suicide attack on one of the  nation’s most symbolic landmarks,” Fox News is reporting. “The man, in his 30s and of Moroccan descent, was  nabbed following a lengthy investigation by the FBI,  initiated after he expressed interest in conducting an attack. It’s unclear how  the FBI learned of his aspirations, though he came onto the radar screen of law  enforcement in early December. The suspect, who has been in the United States for  about 12 years but according to one source is not a U.S. citizen, allegedly  weighed hitting various targets ranging from a military installation to  synagogues before settling on the Capitol. The man thought undercover FBI agents assisting him  in his plot were associates of Al  Qaeda. When he was arrested Friday in Washington, he was  carrying with him a vest supposedly packed with explosives, but the material  inside was not actually dangerous, Fox News was told. A short time earlier, he had been praying at a  mosque in the Washington area. His destination was Capitol  Hill.”

In my second novel, The Last Days, U.S. officials are in a feverish hunt for a suicide bomber headed for the nation’s capital. In my fourth novel, The Copper Scroll, a suicide bomber is being hunted in D.C. subway system. Let’s thank the Lord for our law enforcement and intelligence officials who are working tirelessly to keep us safe and prevent the plots of novels from becoming real life tragedies.


“Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Thursday that sanctions against Iran had not yet worked, adding that Tehran’s nuclear pursuits made it the most ‘irresponsible’ country in the world,” reports Haaretz. “‘Iran is the most irresponsible country in the world and it is breaking all the rules,’ Netanyahu said during a one-day visit to Cyprus.” Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak echoed Netanyahu’s comments during a meeting with Japan’s defense minister. “These (current) sanctions … might not suffice to compel the Iranian leadership to take decisions so we feel that there is still a need for more effective and paralysing sanctions on Iran,” said Barak. The Japanese government, like the Obama administration, is urging Israel not to consider preemptive military strikes against Iran’s nuclear facilities. But the comments by Netanyahu and Barak provide an ominous signal. If the Israeli government does not believe even the newly enhanced international economic sanctions will be sufficient to stop Iran from building the Bomb, then Israel will be more inclined to take military action….sooner rather than later.


UPDATE: Russia and Iran continue arming Syria….Iran increasing presence in Syria….Ahmadinenjad unveils 3 new nuclear advancements

No American wants to see another war in the Middle East. I certainly don’t. But a new poll finds that Americans say: stop Iran now, even if that means war, but under no circumstances let Iran’s Radical Muslim leaders get nuclear weapons. “The public supports tough measures — including the possible use of military force — to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons,” reports a new Pew Research Center poll. “Nearly six-in-ten (58%) say it is more important to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons, even if it means taking military action. Just 30% say it is more important to avoid a military conflict with Iran, even if it means that country develops nuclear weapons. There have been reports in recent weeks that Israel may soon attack Iran’s nuclear facilities. About half of Americans (51%) say the United States should remain neutral if Israel takes action to stop Iran’s nuclear program, but far more say the U.S. should support (39%) than oppose (5%) an Israeli attack.” There is a sharp partisan divide, however, with far more Republicans supporting the use of force — and supporting Israel to use force — than Democrats. To read the full poll, please click here.

>> To help The Joshua Fund educate and mobilize Christians to stand with Israel, and to help TJF prepare for a possible major war in the epicenter, please click here.

PREPARE CHURCHES FOR INEVITABLE: America, Israel and the Church are at risk

February 13, 2012
By Joni B. Hannigan, Managing Editor, Florida Baptist Witness

JACKSONVILLE (FBW)—The handwriting is on the wall and war between Iran and Israel is imminent, Joel Rosenberg, an evangelical Christian and New York Times best-selling author, told the last session of the First Baptist Jacksonville Pastors’ Conference Jan. 29.

“War is coming,” Rosenberg said. “You and I are living in an extraordinary moment in one of the most dangerous moments in the history of our country; one of the most dangerous moments in the history of Israel and the Middle East; and one of the most dangerous moments in the history of the church.”

And the question is, “Are we ready for what could be coming?” 

[UPDATE: U.S. carrier crosses Hormuz amid rising Gulf tensions]

The popular writer, who grew up with a Jewish father and a gentile mother, shared lessons from Daniel 5 on the future of America and the coming war in the Middle East. 

Rosenberg, whose newest book Implosion: Can American Recover from our Economic and Spiritual Challenges in Time is set for release in June, said many pastors are unwilling to speak about the future in terms of Bible prophesy.

For some it’s because prophecy has been “sensationalized” in the past and they resist the “cheapening of God’s Word,” he said. Others might feel unprepared. Some have simply forgotten its power. 

“Prophecy is an intercept from the mind of an all-knowing and all-seeing and all powerful God,” he said. It is meant to inspire, motivate and encourage. It will lead to repentance, holiness, and prayer and fasting, Rosenberg said, adding that prophecy is about the “preaching of the Gospel, making of disciples, planting churches, reaching young people with the Gospel, [and] reaching all people with the Gospel.”

Speaking on “The pastor and his future,” Rosenberg asked pastors, “What is it that God is calling you and your congregation to do?”

Sharing examples of escalating tensions in the Middle East and rejecting “replacement theology,” Rosenberg said the physical state of Israel is the Israel about which the Bible refers. “God is not done with us, He loves us, He has a plan for us,” Rosenberg said. “God so loves the world, the whole world, that He gave His only begotten Son.”

After a recent trip to the concentration camp at Auschwitz, Rosenberg said he was reminded “bombs can do in six minutes what it took Adolph Hitler about six years to do; to kill six million Jews.”

The church needs to teach Bible prophecy he said. Bible passages like Ezekiel 38-39, Jeremiah 49, and the book of Joel. “God is going to use a whole series of events ultimately for His glory, but in the meantime, the church has got to ask ourselves, ‘Are we just gonna be silent? Are we just gonna act like nothing’s happened? … Or we don’t care?’”

A question arising from his Auschwitz visit, Rosenberg said is: “Do I love the Jewish Messiah enough to love the Jewish people with unconditional love and unwavering mercy?”

“We are going to stand before the Jewish Messiah one day, but I don’t want to stand before him and have done nothing. … This is a universal message for Jews and gentiles. We need to be ready to show the love of Jesus.”

Rosenberg and his wife Lynn founded The Joshua Fund in 2006, an educational organization that engages Christians globally about God’s love and plan for Israel and her neighbors. The non-profit organization, Rosenberg said, leads in prayer, provides food to those in need, helps people prepare for war, and distributes New Testaments and other biblical resources in the Middle East.

In a question and answer session at the end of the session, Mac Brunson, senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Jacksonville asked Rosenberg questions that expanded on what he previously presented. 

Newt Gingrich, a Republican who is vying for his party’s presidential nomination, stopped at First Baptist Church during Rosenberg’s session and sat in the back with his wife to listen to part of his presentation. He was recognized from the platform between Rosenberg’s presentation and the question and answer session, by  John Blount, executive pastor of the church, as is the church’s practice, but did not speak or leave his seat.

Side-stepping any specific political issue or candidate for president, Rosenberg said repeatedly that a war between Iran and Israel is imminent and might break out in 2012.

“It may mean that whomever we elect as the next president may not turn this ship around,” Rosenberg said.

Brunson told Florida Baptist Witness most every speaker at some point during the 2012 Pastors’ Conference “spoke in ominous tones” about America’s future, noting Erwin Lutzer, senior pastor of The Moody Church in Chicago, is in a series preparing his people for martyrdom.

“They asked the question, ‘Are Christians prepared to face the days ahead?’” Brunson mused. 

Commenting on Rosenberg’s new book, Implosion, Brunson, who is preaching a series in the book of Joshua entitled “Transitions,” wondered aloud, “I wonder if the nation will not implode before the book even hits the shelves.”

“It seems that there is a sense in the spiritual air we breathe that things are unraveling quickly. The slide is not unstoppable. It will take a great awakening, a supernatural intervention, an act of God, to turn us back from the precipice toward which we run.”



BOMBS TARGET ISRAELI DIPLOMATS IN INDIA, GEORGIA: Tensions escalate as Netanyahu points finger at Iran

>> Krauthammer: Israel ‘will strike’ Iran to ‘prevent a second holocaust’

“Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu angrily blamed Iran on Monday for twin attempts to bomb people affiliated with the Israeli embassies in New Delhi and Tbilisi, Georgia,” reports the Washington Post. “The wife of an Israeli diplomat in New Delhi and her driver were injured in a blast from explosives slapped on their car by a passing motorcyclist, authorities said. Around the same time, a grenade-type device was found duct taped to the bottom of a car affiliated with the embassy in Tbilisi. It was defused without anyone being injured….” To read the full article, please click here.  “Israeli Embassy Spokesman David Goldfarb confirmed that an explosion took out a diplomat’s car,” reports Ynet News.The injured woman was identified as Tal Yehoshua Koren, the wife of a diplomat stationed with the Defense Ministry’s mission in India.” Please pray for the Lord to heal Mrs. Koren and to comfort her, her husband and their family and team.