Scott Clarke Prophecy Video Theories Debunked

The Prophecy Video Trend

I always enjoy answering emails from readers asking for help discerning prophecy theories. In the last couple of years I’ve been getting more and more requests from readers to take a look at a prophecy teaching on Youtube for them. In the past these videos were almost always the amateurish kind with text flowing on the screen slowly with distracting music. When you combine a shaky typical date-setting premise from the title with a tortuous deliver like that, I found them unbearable to watch.

Lately when I click the link, it turns out out to be a video on the eternalrhythmflow Youtube channel by the prolific pretribber Scottie Clarke. Thankfully, he does not torture you with text. Instead, he narrates various images and charts such as from an astronomy program. Yet, as a pretribber his main focus is continually looking for signs of the rapture or Jesus’ return (seven years later according to pretrib thinking). As these never pan out, he has a reason to keep producing videos with new theories.

Here’s the latest email I’ve received on one of this videos:

I was wondering if you thought about the findings of  Scott Clarke related to his Rev 12 ‘virgin birth’ event that perfectly correspond to astronomical alignments in 2017? Please view his video detailing this at “A 2017 Virgin Birth In SPACE?!”

Please view it with an open mind (ie ignore his conviction about what this “sign in the heavens” means for the rapture event). Rather, I’m curious what your thought is on how this very rare sign could mean to the sequence of events as detailed in your book? Like, what do you think the virgin birth event sign in the sky in Sept 2017 means? Could it simply say that 2023 is the right timing for our Lords return (and not 2030)? Are there any ‘events’ in your timeline around the 2017 or 2018 time period that could corrsepond to this ‘virgin birth’ sign in the heaven?

Tim,…I’m hoping you recognize how rare this “birth” sign is (ie the gestation period of Jupiter is 41 weeks, the 12 stars crowning her head is rare, etc). The Lord provided this sign to indicate something – if it is not what Mr Clarke suggests, then what could it be?

The Flawed Assumptions

As you can see from the underlined text in the email above, the underlying assumption of this video  is that heavenly signs such as eclipses and conjunctions are something we should be poring over. The more unique and rare these events are, the more significant they are supposed to be, to the point that it is assumed that it must be God’s doing in order to tell us something. Not surprisingly, Scott Clarke is a fan of the four blood moons theory and includes it in the above video. (I debunked that speculation when Mark Biltz came out with it and when John Hagee issued his version of it.)

The problem with these assumptions is that they rely upon taking verses out of context and building doctrines on them. Clarke, like Mark Biltz and John Hagee, uses Genesis 1:14 as his license to look for signs in the sky. But that verse does not say to look in the heavens for signs of the end times. In context it is talking about signs for seasons/festivals, days and years (Gen 1:14 HCSB). In other words, the regular events we set our calendar by.

They also use Joel 2:31 since it mentions a blood moon in the end times. But it also talks about a solar eclipse at the same time. And if you back up a verse, there is more happening than that. Wonders in the heaven and on the earth at the time of that blood moon / solar eclipse (Joel 2:30). This is parallel to the 6th seal (Rev 6:12-19) which gives even more events like a great global earthquake and shooting stars. It all points to a new cosmic object like a comet in close proximity to earth which explains the four trumpet impact disasters that immediately follow in sequence (Rev 8:1-13). Joel does not direct us to look for normal solar and lunar eclipses on the NASA table as a sign of the rapture or anything. It directs us to expect something new in the heavens interfering catastrophically with our very planet and all life on it.

Jesus Already Said What To Look For (!)

What people are missing who try to read prophecy into these naturally-occurring heavenly events is that Jesus already explained what the end time signs were exactly. He said nothing about singular eclipses, or four eclipses, or conjunctions of heavenly bodies.

In the Olivet Discourse and Revelation he described a few events that he called collectively the “beginning of sorrows.” They are unmistakeable events that have not happened, unlike eclipses and conjunctions that happen on a regular basis. In the Parable of the Fig Tree. Jesus said these are the signs of his coming. He also said that until you see these events, his coming is not near (Mt 24:6). To understand what these “beginning of sorrows” are and what causes them, it’s important to understand Wormwood.

What About The Virgin Sign?

Regarding the heavenly sign of the Woman in Revelation 12, it had to do with Jesus (the manchild’s) birth 2000 years ago. It has nothing to do with the end times. You can tell this because this sign happens before the manchild is taken up to heaven, referring to Jesus’ ascension. Likewise it happens before the dragon (Satan) chases the Woman who God helps for 3.5 times, speaking of Satan’s wrath in the Great Tribulation.

In fact, this “Virgin sign” is not even unique. The heavenly arrangement depicted by Rev 12:1 including the crescent moon, the sun, the woman (constellation Virgo) and the twelve star crown (“Berenice’s hair“) happen in the sky on a repeating basis. 2017 is not the first time it has happened and it won’t be the last. As this article explains, it appeared in the sky when Jesus was born, allowing us to pinpoint the exact time of his birth on the Day of Trumpets (not Tabernacles as many Messianics believe).

Unique Signs Sent By God?

However, even if a sign is unique, that does not make it sent by God or is a divine communication. Even unique conjunctions in the heavens are still just the result of the natural movements of the heavenly bodies. There are all manner of unique signs that have happened throughout history. Uniqueness does not make any of them signs from God, even if we can find parts of them described in the Bible in another context.

In the Bible, when a sign is meant to communicate something from God, it is announced by a prophet beforehand. He also gives the meaning at that time, rather than force you to speculate what it means after the fact. This article explains that in the context of another “unique” phenomenon: major natural disasters which prophecy buffs never fail to seize upon and pronounce to be prophetic after they happen.

Finally, when someone shares a discovery of a unique combination of events like this we have to remember the problem of confirmation bias. We all tend to see patterns or significance in disparate events that simply is not there. Our bias of ignoring information and aspects of these patterns that do not match our theory deceives us. When we hear someone else’s “the only way to explain this pattern is God!” theory, it’s hard to see all the things they left out that do not line up with their theory.

But we don’t have to. If we just remember that creating unique events in the heavens or on earth is not how the Bible shows God communicating with humanity, then we can safely ignore all speculation based on such things. The Bible already has specified how God talks to us: through certified, sign-working prophets like Moses and Jesus. What’s more, these prophets have already spoken on what the key events of the end times are. If you want to understand where we are in prophecy and if anything is near, learn and focus on those events, not the latest dazzling speculation on Youtube or anywhere else.

Pagan Holidays: Not Sin…But Still “Wrong” or Helping Enemy?

As a follow up to my comments about why celebrating “pagan” holidays is not a sin or something we need to avoid, I received this question:

I am not at all suggesting that this is a salvation issue…but how can it be a good or even “ok” thing to celebrate these pagan-based holidays knowing how it all plays in to the end time deception planned by Lucifer and his followers? I am referring to the whole Osiris/Apollo/ Nephilim etc etc agenda for the coming NWO (I am assuming with all of your researching regarding the tribulation and time of the end that you have come across this info.)

Isn’t it better to try to encourage our fellow believers to wake up and ‘take the red pill’ so to speak (obviously abiding by the biblical principal to be ‘ready to give a reason…’ as opposed to banging down a closed door) regarding the true origin and meaning of things including the man-made traditions that are now considered righteous and holy and “of the Lord?” So that they have a better chance of not believing the great delusion that will be offered at that time. To my husband and I, these traditions ingrained in the Christian “way” that are clearly not Bible-based but pagan-based are all part of a well devised and well executed master conspiracy authored by the father of lies and therefore, should be treated a little more seriously as such. Does that make sense?

I just value your opinion and appreciate the method you have used in the past to arrive at answers to biblical questions and was hoping to understand a little better what your view is on all this stuff.

Higher Standards and Judgment

I doubt many mainstream Christians can relate to the questions and concerns expressed above. Because I went through not only my Torah keeping and conspiracy theory phases, I understand it all too well.

I’m also familiar with the thinking that although something may not be sin, it could still be somehow “wrong” and need to be avoided. Some Torah keepers use this logic. They won’t claim that Torah is required today, but they will suggest that if you “know” that it’s the “ideal” that God gave to Israel, “shouldn’t you want to do as much of it as you can?” Those who don’t see it that way are viewed as not true or not serious servants of God, guilty of “picking and choosing” what to obey in God’s Word.

This judgment is usually not intentional or malicious. It is an effect of having high personal standards. We naturally think others should have the same standards we do in order to qualify as good people like ourselves. A naturally thin or exercise-loving person may view overweight people as lazy thinking that if he can keep himself thin, then everyone can and “should” do so, too (“should” is a word loaded with judgment). When it comes to instruction of the Bible, it’s easy to believe that its instructions are universal or God’s will for all men. Anyone opting out from any commandment of God must be disobedient.

What these people miss is that good, sincere, diligent people come to different conclusions on what the Bible says. There are typically good reputable scholars on either side of any doctrinal dispute. The Bible is just written that way that multiple reasonable interpretations are possible. Until one recognizes that fact and as long as one keeps insisting that “the Bible is very clear” we continue to consider those who do not maintain the same standards as we do to be disobedient needing “to repent” instead of seeing them as the like-minded brothers who seek to serve God that they really are in God’s eyes.

The Fallacy of Complicity and Negligence

In this case, the belief is that everyone should know that Christian holidays are of pagan origin and part of some end time conspiracy to deceive people and should want to avoid them. It is thought that if you do not avoid them when you know better, you are somehow complicit, or an accomplice to this terrible “plan of the enemy.” Again, as with the Torah keepers, the fear is that you will be held accountable by God for not acting on what you “know.”

Certainly the Bible teaches the principle of accountability for what you know. If you see your neighbor’s ox wandering astray, it is your duty to help and return it to him (Ex 23:4). Or if you know to do good and you do not do it, it is sin (James 4:17). But is this principle correctly applied when we consider those who celebrate pagan holidays as helping the “NWO?”

There are several differences in the topic at hand that make this principle inapplicable. First, when you see your neighbor’s ox wandering the street, you know it is out of place. You have the evidence; there is no disputing the fact. You must act or be guilty of negligence.

However, the same cannot be said if you change the situation to someone merely reporting to you that your neighbor’s ox is in the street. Are they telling the truth or correct in their identification? Hard to say. It would be considered hearsay in front of a judge to claim that someone else said they saw the ox. You are far less accountable for that.

Now take it a step further consider a situation where you are told that someone else is planning to open your neighbor’s gate so his ox can get lost. Not only hearsay, but this time hearsay about an intent to create a problem, rather than there being potentially an actual serious problem. This is more in the realm of rumor now. If you know the neighbor you might pass it along, but if they are just some stranger out there then it’s really not your concern. Chasing down wild rumors like that would not be a good use of your time.

And that’s what these reports about the NWO planning to delude the entire world by inventing and encouraging pagan holidays are like. We have never met them, we don’t know who they are, we don’t know where they are or what they plan to do exactly or when. How can we be complicit in their evil plans by celebrating a popular holiday when all we have is hearsay and rumors to connect the two?

Now, I concede that by not acting on even a rumor you might be considered negligent if it is regarding something serious enough, like someone reported to be conspiring to murder or physically harm others. For example, the Secret Service reportedly follows up on every single rumor of a threat against the President of the United States because of how important the president and his safety is.

Deception: Not the “End of the World”

However, what we’re talking about here is “only” deception, and deception on the topic of holidays, no less. Whether it is part of some grand conspiracy does not matter. As stated above, this cannot be proven, and even if it’s true 1. it does not matter what was “intended” by those who started a tradition, but rather what is intended by those keeping it, and 2. we can’t be held accountable for knowing the origins of and intent behind every old tradition we keep anyway, even if it mattered, which it does not. Celebrating a holiday is not a sin.

And truth be told, deception is not such a big deal either. We’re all deceived all the time thanks to Satan’s influence (Rev 12:9). We go in and out of deception as we study; picking up wrong information that stays with us until we discover it–if we ever do. Thankfully, we will be saved no matter how much false doctrine, tradition and beliefs we hold in our head and practice, even if those things are in alignment with the plans of evil people. Deception most often only hurts our pride, not our salvation.

For this reason, “waking people up” about the pagan origins of holidays or supposed NWO conspiracy plans is not the biblical equivalent of the Matrix’s “red pill” that it is made out to be by many. For some it is noteworthy and leads them to discover that Christianity is not teaching them the truth but is teaching tradition.  Yet they probably will remain Christian and keep believing the majority of the falsehood Christianity teaches contrary to the Bible. Adding or removing those beliefs of themselves does not change ones relationship with God.

The majority, however, will view conspiracy theories from fringe sources or a history lesson on the pagan origins of some Christian traditions as not things profitable to focus on or change their life around. Who wants to serve a God who would expect you to be accountable for rumor-level information and things done or intended by people long ago in history?

The Real “Red Pill” Awakening

I know some people deep into conspiracy theory research will probably not be helped by the reasoning above. They will find it hard to let go of the idea that this secret “information” is not important or that it can safely be ignored.

Perhaps it would help to know what the real “red pill” awakening is. It’s called the gospel of the Kingdom of God. When Jesus came this was the message he taught to the masses–not that he was the Messiah and people had to accept him as such to be saved. He taught them to repent because the Kingdom was being offered to those who do. Those who are called, chosen and faithful until the end will receive eternal life and entrance into the Kingdom where they will “inherit” and rule the earth for 1000 years. And not only that but blessings are promised in this life too (Mk 10:30).

How do you qualify for all this? All that is required is to love your neighbor as yourself for God (Mt 19:17-19). No need to have a religion, belong to a church, keep biblical holidays, avoid pagan traditions, study conspiracy theories and wake people up about them. Simple! (But not easy…)

If you still doubt the above, it might help to ask yourself why with all the warnings Jesus gave about avoiding things, he spent ZERO time talking about avoiding pagan influence and conspiracy of the Roman culture and powers of his day dominating his nation? Instead, he emphasized love as the focus, not avoiding all these traditions and inventions of men. You’re safest if you follow his teaching rather than the rantings of fringe sources on the internet today.

What is the True Church?

Tim, have you written any articles or have any links to share about the true Church of God and where/who it is?

No, but this is such an important question for every believer it is time I did.

Why So Many Churches?

Most believers probably forget (or purposely ignore) how fractured the Christian world is. To focus on it causes cognitive dissonance. How can “Jesus’ followers” be so divided? Why is Christianity, if it is Jesus’ religion, such a confusing mess?

Christian author and scholar Dr. Roy Blizzard has said that Christianity is divided into 40,000 warring denominations. Of course, the division stems mainly from doctrinal differences. For example, some denominations sprinkle for baptism, others immerse, others don’t do it at all. If you believe immersion is necessary, how can you stay with a group that denies “the truth” (as you see it) or condone them “doing it wrong?” You join or start a new group who you can agree with. This is what people have done over the centuries to produce the confusing Christian scenario that we are all too familiar with. It is a chief bad fruit of the emphasis on “right” doctrinal beliefs, instead of the emphasis on right attitude and actions that Jesus had exclusively.

Everyone naturally thinks that the church they belong to is doing things right and is the true church. From the smallest cult to the largest organization. I have had many Catholics proudly point out that their church is the true church because it is the oldest and preserved the Bible that “you Protestants use to argue against us.”

The Church Defined

But the truth is that to find the true church you do not go examining the Christian organizations or denominations out there. When Jesus said, “I will build my church” (Mt 16:18) he was not talking about Christianity, a religion that developed centuries after he died. The biblical definition of the church is actually the people, the believers. The Greek word translated church is ekklesia which literally translates to “called out ones,” not “church.”

The true ekklesia is you and I and all believers collectively. Whether you gather, assemble or meet or not, we are the church. It’s not contained in any one religion, denomination, system, or organization, but found across them all—and outside them, too. If you don’t “go to church” or don’t “belong to a church” you still are the church.

Today the true church of God is actually not organized. We have no leader. The apostles are gone. We have no system; it’s confusion. Certainly we have no agreed upon beliefs or practices (see above). But that’s OK. Such things are not required to be the called out ones. You only need choose to respond to the calling by believing in the good news of the Kingdom.

What is Repentance?

An important consideration here is that even believers who do not take the calling seriously or who do not act like Jesus instructed are still the church. There is no subdivision of true believers and false believers in the body. Therefore, even the typical Christian who does nothing more than sit through a sermon every Sunday and pay his tithe is still the church. Even if the rest of the week he may act no differently than the world around him, he still qualifies.

If you doubt this, read the letters to seven churches in Revelation chapters 2 and 3. Jesus corrects most of the churches telling them to stop being lukewarm and repent. Yes, sinning, lukewarm, wicked believers are still the ekklesia. They were called out and the chose to respond, but they are not bearing the right fruit, good fruit.

What fruit? “Fruit worthy of repentance” as John the Baptist called it (Mt 3:8=Lk 3:8). If you read Luke 3, you’ll see that John helpfully illustrates what these fruits look like. Unlike what Christianity teaches, it’s not about accepting Jesus and a bunch of orthodox beliefs and creeds and maintaining membership with a local “church.” Instead it is acting with loving compassion towards others rather than acting with our natural selfishness and indifference. This requires “turning” from your normal instinctive ways, which is the meaning of repent.

By the way, Jesus makes it clear that the members of the church that do not repent will not receive eternal life (Rev 3:5; 3:16). That’s why he implores them to repent. This is again different than what Christianity teaches that once you believe you are saved just for that. Some even teach that “once saved, always saved.” If that was true, why would the church listen to Jesus’ pleading to repent?

How To Receive Eternal Life in Jesus’ Own Words

The members of the church who actually think and act differently than everyone else are not just called and chosen (Mt 22:14), but they are called chosen and faithful (Rev 17:14). They faithfully have an attitude of following (albeit not perfectly) the six commandments required for entry into the Kingdom and receive eternal life (Mt 19:16-19). Jesus told a parable illustrating what those six commandments look like in practice, which is similar to what John the Baptist described:

Matthew 25:41-46 (HCSB) — 41  Then He will also say to those on the left, ‘Depart from Me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the Devil and his angels! 42  For I was hungry and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty and you gave Me nothing to drink; 43  I was a stranger and you didn’t take Me in; I was naked and you didn’t clothe Me, sick and in prison and you didn’t take care of Me.’ 44  “Then they too will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or without clothes, or sick, or in prison, and not help You?’ 45  “Then He will answer them, ‘I assure you: Whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for Me either.’ 46  “And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

How much thought and effort does the average Christian put into cultivating an attitude of loving others like that in themselves? Obviously, not much. I have no judgment for them, only sorrow. In their defense, they are simply not taught or trained in having that focus. The focus in churches is on having the right beliefs and getting others to believe the same way and hopefully join the church.


In conclusion, finding or being the true church is very easy. Believers are everywhere. However, finding or being the part of the church that is faithful or on the narrow path (Mt 7:14) is not so easy, although the requirements are thankfully very simple. Put in the simplest way:

Matthew 7:12 (HCSB)  — Therefore, whatever you want others to do for you, do also the same for them—this is the Law and the Prophets.,

If you never step foot in a church but you study the instruction of Jesus and act on it, then you will be the best example of the true church available to probably most people who know you.

Is Jesus the “Prince” of Ezekiel 40-48?

What Time Period Is Ezekiel 40-48?

Here’s an interesting question a friend asked on Ezekiel 40-48:

Knowing you have studied most Bible prophesy, to which time period(s) do you attribute these 9 chapters? Who is the prince mentioned? Note HIS sin sacrifice 45:22 and after. Also “his sons” 46:16 (If you want to do it as a Facebook blog I can read it there. Thanks Bro)

It is well known that Ezekiel 40-48 are prophecies of the Millennium (and beyond). The temple referred to there is therefore called the Millennial Temple, not to be confused with the next temple, the Third Temple. Ezekiel 40-46 describes the Millennial Temple, the priesthood and sacrifices there. To most Christians it’s shocking that sacrifices are coming back until they understand the purpose of the sacrifices.

Who is “The Prince?” at the Millennial Temple?

Also strange is how there are several mentions of “the prince” in these chapters. You would think these verses refer to Jesus at the temple:

Ezekiel 44:3 — It is for the prince; the prince, he shall sit in it to eat bread before the LORD; he shall enter by the way of the porch of that gate, and shall go out by the way of the same.

Ezekiel 45:22 — And upon that day shall the prince prepare for himself and for all the people of the land a bullock for a sin offering.

Ezekiel 46:16 — Thus saith the Lord GOD; If the prince give a gift unto any of his sons, the inheritance thereof shall be his sons’; it shall be their possession by inheritance.

However as noted in the question above, there are clear problems with this. For example, Jesus has no sons and is sinless needing no sacrifice. The New American Commentary agrees:

Equally intriguing is the “prince” who may sit inside the gate to “eat in the presence of the Lord,” probably meaning to eat a communal meal. Not even the prince used the entrance of the gate. When he entered it, he entered by the porch (v. 3).

Because of the messianic associations with the eastern gate, some have identified the “prince” as the Messiah, since 37:25 says, “David my servant will be their prince forever.” In spite of this reference, two important details suggest that the “prince” of 44:3 is not the Messiah. First, the prince is not a priest but has priests who minister for him. The Messiah is portrayed in Old Testament prophecy as the coming Priest-King (Zech 6:13). The offices of priest and king are always kept separate because the Messiah is to be the only one in whom these two offices are combined (2 Chr 26:16-21). Second, the prince is required to offer a sin offering for himself (Ezek 45:22) every day for seven days during feasts (45:23). By contrast, the Messiah was the sinless sacrifice for all people and a perfect High Priest (Heb 9:22-28).

If the prince is not the Messiah, then who is he? Some have identified the prince as David resurrected and serving in the temple during the millennium. More likely the prince is a special representative of the Messiah who will serve as an administrator of the temple, temple area, and sacred district. Such a conclusion is suggested by Levenson, who sees the prince as an apolitical messianic leader or a David-like administrator.

What else you want to know? =)

Update: Someone asked if the fact that “the prince” has to atone for his sins means he’s not a glorified saint but a physical man. I think that’s right. He’s not Jesus, David or any glorified saint. (Plus not only will David be glorified, but he will be king over Israel and Judah, not a prince.)

Biblical Holy Day Calendar: Why So Much Confusion?

Here’s a question I received on Facebook that is the same question I and everyone has early on in their “Torah keeping” adventure:

Seeing several people/sites claiming today (Sept 5) is the Feast of Trumpets (or Rosh Hashanah) .. your site lists Sept 8 and I’ve seen others list the 6th, 7th or 9th…. How come we have so much disagreement over something that should be pretty straightforward?

Actually, it was only straightforward for the people to whom the holy days were originally given to keep; ancient Israel. The rest of us, now some 3500 years later who it was not given to, must deal with many ambiguities in the written text all on our own. Some use Jewish tradition to resolve them (Jewish calendar), others astronomy (equinox calendar), others Karaite scholarship (aviv barley calendar) among other permutations.

What is missed by most today is that the Torah did not just drop out of the sky to be read on its own or followed by anyone who comes along. It was given to a specific people and given with key assistance. Namely, ancient Israel was given the Torah through the prophet Moses. When Israel had any question on what to do or what God’s will was in a matter, they could ask the prophet (or later, the priest with the urim and thumim). If he did not know the answer, he was able to inquire of God directly and get the answer reliably. No debate, no division, no doubts (like today).

There are a few examples of this in the Old Testament: 1. The man caught collecting wood on Sabbath, (Nu 15:33-36); 2. the blaspheming son (Lev 24:12-14); and 3. the question about the inheritance for the Daughters of Zelophehad (Nu 27:4-6). In addition they had the judges and Levites to explain what the Torah meant.

In contrast to this, anyone reading the Torah today is missing that key component for understanding it. It’s like trying to operate a complicated proprietary system for your business by reading only the owner’s manual without the onsite company trainer sent to answer all the questions that come up in reading the manual. It’s a recipe for confusion and frustration.

This crucial problem is one of the several reasons why I had to abandon “Torah keeping” years ago.

How I Came To Abandon “Torah Keeping”

My journey as a believer has taken me through more than my share of denominations and movements. Five in all. They each had unique biblical insights and truths to offer, so each was a helpful step in my growth in understanding…until they no longer were. I typically moved on when the errors they taught became obvious and too overwhelming to put up with.

The particular phase I was in during in the early 2000’s goes by various names such as Messianic Judaism, Hebrew Roots, Two House and “Torah Keeping.” It involves keeping as much the 613 commandments in the Torah or five books of Moses (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy) as one can. The mainstay of these commandments is the Sabbath and the biblical feasts of Leviticus 23 (popularly known mostly as the Jewish holidays) and avoiding unclean meats.

I’m glad I got into Torah keeping. Through it I came to understand a lot more of the Bible than I did before, especially in the area of Bible prophecy. Yet after a few years, diminishing returns set in and more errors came to light, just as I experienced in all other movements/denominations.

Most importantly, I found myself unable to accept that all the Torah were what that Jesus and others in the NT referred to as  the (universal) “commandments of God” (1Jo 5:2-3).

A few people have asked me lately how this came about. Here’s a brief summary:

1) I tried to practice it here in Costa Rica and saw not only was I unsure always on how to do it (calendar wars, Sabbath restriction debates, etc.), but even the ways I thought to try to keep the days God was not providing a way to do it. This seemed odd if I sincerely wanted to obey him and he wanted me to do it, that he was not blessing me with a way to do so.

Likewise, nobody else was really was “keeping Torah.” Instead of doing it all like Israel, they were all picking and choosing what parts God would hold them accountable to do. For example, I didn’t know anyone who went to Jerusalem for Passover, Pentecost and Tabernacles as was required on all men. “Oh, well we can’t afford to do that, so God must wink at that one…”

2) I kept studying and seeing many verses that contradicted the Torah keeping premise. Timothy was circumcised not because “it was required on all” but to “please the Jews there.” Acts 15 was getting harder and harder to twist from its more plain reading (see ). Galatians was also hard to keep explaining away.

3) I finally learned about the rule of audience and saw how much Christian and Messianic exegesis depends on ignoring the specific audience spoken to and lifting it and making it universal. The audience of Torah was ancient Israel under Moses. You have to prove it is for someone else, not assume it is. (This audience point is a real bombshell because it destroys most of Christian doctrine based on NT passages to specific audiences, like the Great Commission given to the apostles.)

Once I stopped focusing on attempting to do something that was impossible for me to do, an interesting thing happened. While reading the Gospels, I began to notice what Jesus had been wanting for us all along. He never once told people to “keep Torah” (as Torah teachers claim) or defined the Torah as the “commandments of God” that are referenced in the NT (1Jo 5:2-3)  He instead told people to trust God and to love your neighbor as yourself as the universal commandments of God. By loving your neighbor because it’s God’s will, you are obeying and loving God. He said that living that way fulfilled the Torah and the Prophets (the entire Hebrew Bible) and gave you eternal life.

Hebrew Roots had failed to explain what Jesus wanted for us to do, just as all the other denominations I had been in did. It did not put the emphasis on “doing for others what you would want done for you,” as Jesus did (Mt 7:12).

These days I just seek to fulfill the will of God for all men as Jesus himself expressed it. To be sure, loving your neighbor is not as stimulating or interesting as Torah keeping is, so it’s not likely to catch on. It even seems too simple to be correct coming from a 613 commandment Torah-keeping view. But when you make loving God and your neighbor your focus, you find it’s not so easy as it simple. It’s even more challenging than Torah keeping was.

America’s Fall: Why Does “Nobody” Buy the Merchants’ Goods “Anymore” After?

This post is about an interesting question in regards to my article Will America Crash Economically or Recover? — Bible’s Bittersweet Answer. (Note: If after reading the above article you still doubt Mystery Babylon the Great refers to America, check out 60 proofs America is Babylon.

Many people believe America is doomed to suffer an economic collapse worse than the Great Depression. They point to several reasons to support this view. A popular one cited is the shift of domestic manufacturing overseas. America once had a great manufacturing base. For example, it was a key factor in winning World War II. With the loss of that base, people assume America must go downhill. Sound familiar?

Here’s the question off that premise:

Reader Question: Loss of Manufacturing Base to Asia Reason For All the Merchant Ships?

This is an observation I have had for quite some time concerning your take on America’s financial status in the global community. When referring to the many ship captains and their vessels sitting out of port on the day of Mystery Babylon’s destruction and lamenting her destruction (Rev 18:17,18,19) – I believe you use this picture to explain away a great economic collapse which predicates the “single day destruction.”

My question to you is, due to the fact that America has forfeited her manufacturing base to Asia, wouldn’t it make sense for there to be many ship captains awaiting port of call regardless of America’s financial status? That is, whether markets are “up or down,” we need lots of ships on a daily cycle to maintain food, fuel and dry goods. Therefore, couldn’t Mystery Babylon’s destruction occur AFTER a major hit on our economy or at best, occur at a time of financial malaise?

Inquiring minds just gotta know!

My Answer: America’s Diversified, Top Wealth-Producing Economy

Maybe it’s time to shift our paradigm about the importance of a “manufacturing base?” Despite the importance people like to place on manufacturing, we’re still the world’s economic leader after supposedly losing the mantle of being the manufacturing leader. Why? We have a diversified high-tech information and manufacturing economy now. We’re still the wealthiest nation.

Remember, the merchant ships only come because we have “wealth seeking goods” as the economists say. And not just a little like a financial malaise would demand, but so many goods are bought here that these merchants are made rich by their trade with America the Babylon. As Revelation 18 plainly says, this prosperous trade scenario continues until the day America is burned with fire which is why sea-faring merchants are off the coast witnessing the burning and weeping for the great loss.

Why do they cry so badly? It’s not a small loss or even a partial loss. It’s a complete loss of their business…

“Nobody Buys Their Merchandise Anymore”??

Revelation says NOBODY buys their goods anymore (Rev 18:11). They’re not just out of business with America but with everyone. How come? If only America is destroyed why does this stop everyone from buying from the merchants?

I just understood how to explain this mysterious verse last year. When America is destroyed, the dollar is no longer a backed currency. Just imagine what would happen if the world’s reserve currency became worthless everywhere suddenly? It would bring global economic collapse beyond anything we’ve seen. Talk about pulling the rug out from under everyone. It would spell the end of prosperous commerce like we are accustomed to today (until the Beast rises and restores it – Mt 24:38-39)

Therefore, it well be doubly good for people to “move forth from the land of Babylon” not just for the fiery destruction but for the global pandemonium that will ensue. I’ve been thinking for a long time Elijah will warn people to flee Babylon and all nations at the same time since America’s fall is so catastrophic to the world and Wormwood is coming so soon after. Imagine people trying to travel to flee Babylon in a global meltdown? It will be tough for those who wait because they adopted a “wait and see” approach the Elijah’s warning.

Follow-up Comment:

That would make sense being that most of the world is capitalizing on “Mystery Babylon’s” buying power. If one feeds the neighbors big bad dog they shouldn’t be surprised to end up missing a hand or a few fingers. The “ripple effect” would indeed be catastrophic. Thanks for your timely response Timotheus!

Confused by Hebrew Roots/Torah Keeping?

My Conversation with a Confused Torah Keeper

After Nehemia Gordon shared my Facebook status on his Facebook wall, one of his friends found me and said:

Hey Tim, I have questions, how do I get some of them to you? I have tried to ask Nehemia Gordon and I think he’s busy right now! Anyway, I see how good you are about writing back.

I’m always up for helping people out of their confusion if I can as it feels great to see the fog of confusion lift and peace arrive. It also helps me get clearer on my thoughts along the lines of the Socratic method (used by Socrates to teach his students through questions).

Her confusion was over Torah Keeping. As someone who went through the same questions and confusion she did, I am able to point out some things that are easy to miss and not taught by the Torah teachers.

If you want to see what I said to her, read the complete dialog here posted with permission (but name withheld) in the interest of helping others confused over Torah keeping (TK),walking as Jesus walked,” and “pagan holidays” like Christmas and Easter.

“Should I Keep Torah?”

Confused Torah Keeper: Long story short, I believe Jesus is the messiah, but have always had a deep interest in the truth of the Bible, how to follow Him in truth and it has taken me on a journey of finding out how much of what I had been taught wasn’t even “truth”. I started by finding out how Easter, Christmas, etc. were pagan holidays all of that. So I then was drawn to Hebraic root, messianic jew online congregations. Okay, now all of my family and friends then called me a jew because I felt that the feasts were something I should study and know about. The more serious I became about all things jewish, the backlash from friends, family, church members became pretty intense. Nehemia, blows my mind on his knowledge and now I have questions about do I follow Him in truth anymore? Do I follow the torah laws, does Jesus intend for us to? Then I was listening to truth2u radio and they talked about Hebrews 8 and how there is a new covenant. I guess the simple question is how do I tell people (and myself) that Jesus never came to do away with the old laws when so much of what Paul says messes that up and then there is Hebrews 8. Does any of that make sense? I do not have the support around me to help me work through some of these things and my spirit is taking a beating.

Tim: I started the same Torah journey back in 2000, so I appreciate your questions and where you are. I have learned so much through it and since then after realizing Torah keeping did not fit with the NT as you are seeing. I don’t regret Torah Keeping (TK) but once I saw that it did not produce the results/fruit Jesus talked about, I had to move on.

First, if you look at all the words of Jesus for what he directly told people to do, Jesus never told them to keep Torah while he instead told them other things, plenty of them. The only way to get that Jesus wanted us to do Torah is to point to the fact that he did it (ignoring why) and take some of his words out of context.

In Mt 19:17-19 when asked how to have eternal life, he specifically listed only five love your neighbor commandments and left off all the other five that come only through Torah revelation. People can learn to love their neighbor by being around people who teach them how to treat them. Plus governments have statutes around those five commandments too. But the five he left off and the rest of Torah only come through revelation that only Israel received. Plus they were about staying in the Promised Land, not about eternal life like the five love thy neighbor commands are.

Why Jesus did not list Sabbath and other commands bothered me when I was a TK. He went out of his way to not tell people to keep Torah stuff. Only the love stuff. Why, if TK was required? Well, now you know what I concluded and how I resolved that.

If TK is required, then 99% of humanity is damned because they never heard of it and if they did hear of it they see it as something given to Israel/Judah (and rightly so). But if love your neighbor is all that is required, then 100% of humanity living around people has the chance to figure this out. If God made us all, he would want us to not harm what he made. I think that’s why people universally admire the Mother Teresa’s, Ghandi’s, etc. Everyone knows what’s right.

CTK: I know He did it (because that was the way), that is my reason for wanting to also. Do you feel it’s important to keep the feasts, clean food eating, etc. in your walk?

Tim: Define “important.” As you can see above, if TK is in any way “important” where does that leave 99% of humanity who WE MUST REMEMBER never received Torah?

CTK: I guess, because I know these things I feel that “since I know better” I should follow how He walked.

“We Should Walk As He Walked…?”

Tim: ahh, that verse. Have you looked at it closely?

CTK: The more I study the less I know. I guess I haven’t looked close enough. Remind me where that verse is.

Tim: Read 1John 2:6 now in context and tell me if you had never heard a Torah Teacher tell you it means Torah, what is the context of that verse (verse 6)?

Verse 3 says keeping Jesus’ commands. Read Mt, Mk, Lk and Jn and you’ll never once see him say “Keep Torah” but he will tell people to love one another and explain what that looks like (Good Samaritan, separation of the Sheep and the Goats-“you did it unto me”)

TKs say verse 3 is Torah commands. But that does not fit. Keep reading and see how it talks about love in verse 5 and 10, before and after the verse on walking like Jesus (verse 6).

Jesus’ commandments are love thy neighbor in five points (Mt 19:18-19). By doing this for God, he says you inherit the kingdom. It’s simple, but not easy. That is the good news of the kingdom and why it requires repentance. We don’t naturally love each other. We’re naturally selfish. People who change that really stand out like the great servants I mentioned above. Torah does not produce that fruit. It was for Israel to be a great wise nation that inspired other nations. It was not about salvation.

And I have not even gotten into the fact that nobody can keep Torah today or since AD 70. It was an all or nothing contract with Israel. They were warned for neglecting points. Today people kid themselves when they say they are TK because they are just Torah Fans as Michael Rood says. That was the other thing I saw that made me realize I was just fooling myself about TK being required. How could God require or make important something that nobody can do today?

And when did he ever tell anyone, “It’s OK, just do the parts you can…”?

That’s the little inconvenient truth about TK that we all had to ignore in the movement. We could not even do what we said we did but we winked at it and said the best we could must be good enough.

Is any of what I concluded helping you? I bet you have tons of questions still. Feel free to ask others and just keep doing it until you’re sure. Just sharing why now I focus on Jesus’ actual words of instruction and not his actions (incl. dying on a cross, calling 12 apostles, turning over the money changers tables) or Torah teacher’s words.

CTK: I see what you are saying, and I agree. I guess this search for truth and taken me off track in trying to do His will. It is hard to love your neighbor. Your talk has helped me so much. It’s taken the edge of feeling ashamed that I’m not following right some how.

Tim: Phew! Good. Yes, shame and fear of missing something is a big driving force behind TK. When you can see for yourself that it’s really simple and you can’t possibly be missing it or everyone is missing it and we’re all damned, then you can have peace and confidence to step up and try to do that simple hard thing with God’s help (which he is very happy to give to those who take that pleasing step of faith to serve an invisible God by loving people for him)

CTK: I pray that God blesses you as you have blessed me in helping me see things a little clearer. The fence is not a good place to be, walking between two places.

Avoiding Pagan Holidays?

Tim: Thanks. I’m sure further questions will occur, so don’t hesitate….

CTK: Real quick, I still don’t to celebrate Easter and Christmas! Lol

Tim: oops, there we go…

Then don’t. If your conscience says don’t then don’t. But there is nothing sinful about keeping “pagan” holidays. Israel was told not to worship pagan idols but that is not what the days are today. They are confused dirty syncretism now, but that does not make them sin. Paul’s letters are good on this point. He never says a word about the “avoiding the pagan days” of his culture. He says you can eat food sacrificed to idols if it does not bother your conscience or the conscience of your brother. If they were as bad as TK or Michael Rood says, then it would be different.

CTK: Yep, it does bother me how these holidays were started. I have listened to Michael Rood, but wasn’t sure about his teaching.

Tim: Yes, they are false and I personally have no desire to keep them in my house ever since I knew they were shams. But if someone invited me to a Xmas party I would not be offended or tell them it’s pagan. I’d go if I felt like it without fear that I’m sinning or offending God. You can’t live your life without coming in contact with pagan words, ideas, inventions, traditions and philosophy.

CTK: My family is dead set on keeping them, they just know I’m not big on it. I have 3 grown children with 8 grandchildren and if I gave up on Christmas totally it would be world war three.

My heart is just not the same about it.

Tim: Yeah then I advise you keep the peace by putting aside your own disgust with the holiday’s origins. That’s love. (Love is not telling them it’s all pagan and making them feel ashamed. That’s what I did when I was young and naive in my teens and just figuring out the truth about Xmas. It’s a common mistake played out on Facebook every day.)

CTK: I’ll let you go, bless your heart. I’ll bug you some other day.


I was messaged this after this posting of our conversation. It was very helpful of her to explain which of the arguments presented above were the key to her freedom from worry that she should keep Torah.

CTK: It was good to reread that. … I’m just so glad you took the time to talk, I just hope people don’t judge on how “stupid” I might have sounded, so the anonymous part is awesome! The part about not being able to keep all of it, but trying to “wink”, is good enough, is I think, what really made me wake up and be like, there is the simple truth of it, and I was missing that in my quest to be loyal to Him. Again, thank you.

For Further Reading

To answer some follow-up questions to this post, see How I Came To Abandon Torah Keeping.

Update 2016

Three years later, my position has not changed, but in helping another person on Facebook new to the Torah keeping issue and questioning it all, I wrote the following that I think sums it up even better:

As you said, nobody keeps the whole law today because it’s impossible. Just realizing that, you’re ahead of the field who deceive themselves into thinking they are keeping Torah, which was an all-or-nothing proposition when delivered by Moses to ancient Israel. Yet many still pick and choose to keep Sabbath, feasts, kosher, etc. which all only exist in the Law. As such, feast-keeping IS indeed keeping the law–part of it.

People do this thinking that adoption of these rituals given to ancient Israel would please God today, too. Common reasons?: “Jesus kept them”, “They are eternal”, “They are coming back as prophecy says so why not start today?”, etc. Or they think Christianity has negligently failed to teach these things as evidenced by their invented pagan holiday focus instead. Notice, that among these reasons is not, “Jesus plainly taught us to keep the Law of Moses. Just read the Sermon on the Mount!” because he taught anything but law keeping in his words.

Either way, while this heart to find and do all God wills is great and pleases God, I have personally experienced and observed for three decades how these practices end up being yet another ditch or distraction from what Jesus actually taught and called “good fruit” in the Sermon on the Mount. What Jesus taught is what God prefers we focus on developing, not what Moses taught ancient Israel to keep, yes?

Unfortunately, just as you rightly pointed out that Christianity does not teach us the truth on the days God once set apart and will set apart again and has introduced us to pagan feasts days (whether they are bad enough lies to reject or not is up to each person, as Greg said), Christianity also fails to teach and train us in how to be like Jesus by developing the good fruit he said to focus on. This fruit is the key determiner of how to choose who to let teach us and how to know if we are in the faith ourselves. Since leaving Torah keeping, my focus has been on understanding and developing this fruit which does bring you the fruits Jesus talked about, unlike how Law keeping did.

If it helps you to hear more about my journey out of Torah keeping, you can read about it in this post.

Hope this helps and blessings on your search for truth and to please Yehovah God.

Discussing End Time Prophecy With Children

Many who contact me and get my book are naturally concerned about understanding and even mentally prepared for the end times events. Those who are parents like me often bring up the subject of how to share this topic with their children. Here’s an example of what one lady wrote me:

Can you please tell me how you discuss these things [end times] with your children?  I have a 15 y.o and he is difficult to talk to.

I thought perhaps that I should just pray and ask the Holy Spirit to give him revelation knowledge, understanding, wisdom, insight and discernment about the things to come and the things pertaining to God as he is moving away from the faith.

Here’s my answer:

Because I have been studying and talking about this topic everyday since my children were small, they have been used to it without me specifically discussing it with them. I don’t see any need to do so anyway. There is nothing children or teens (or anyone else) need to know or need to do about what’s coming. It tends to only make them anxious and wonder whether they will get a chance to finish school, have a career, get married, have kids. So I don’t recommend it.

It may help to remember that most people will know nothing about the end times. This is OK because God’s plan to save us does not depend on something other than that. Elijah will come, work miracles, speak with authority, get attention and share instructions no one else has. People of all walks and modes of belief or unbelief will not be able to miss that call to action when it comes and it will wake up even many skeptics and unbelievers. Many Christians who depend on pastors, religion, church structure, etc. may not respond in faith.

Therefore, instead of giving them the particulars about Bible prophecy, I think your best bet is to teach your children to look to God and his word directly now (Acts 17:11), instead of depending on others’ opinions about God for when the time comes to evaluate Elijah and what he says when he comes.

Sovereignty or Free Man Movement: WWJD?

The sovereignty or free man movement sucks in many people, sometimes ruining their lives. Believers who run into it even consider that following it is pleasing or God or something Jesus would do. I received the following email from someone new to it who wanted my opinion of it:

I just recently found out about this free man movement, who lawfully don’t cooperate with society or society’s rules/statutes which the society calls “laws” but they aren’t actually by definition laws. And they refuse to pay tax to a corporation which uses the money to kill innocent people with or withholds money from the vulnerable like the UK is doing now, disabled people are killing themselves because they are being denied money and have no food, people are being made homeless but the majority are paying these taxes in expectation that the vulnerable will be cared for. Then the gov are using the money for 10 million pound funerals for dead politicians and justifying building nukes because of the none existent threats of north Korea. I wasn’t born to have to fund this and I am researching it at the moment. Just randomly wanted to ask you if you’d heard of it and what you think. It all started with the straw man, realising that birth certificates are documents actually signing children over as property of the state. Then I found more things. That basically all that “law” we are TOLD to believe and obey, as free men of the land we are under common law but not all these man made laws. So basically by cooperating with the state and society we are agreeing to their conditions etc, and allowing them to enforce these things without giving consent in the first place so in other words we are willing slaves to a system most of us don’t even realise we have to be part of in anyway as long as we follow common law derived from common sense but for me God’s commandments are top.

I not only have heard of sovereignty / free men, but I studied it and considered following it for awhile. I even went to a weekend sovereignty seminar put on by a sovereignty leader who hosts a radio show. However, within a couple years I finally had to reject it after observing a few things:

1) The results of it in people’s lives was bad, often catastrophic. They were wasting their time fighting city hall or picking fights with city hall and losing their homes, their citizenship, their homeland, their jobs, etc. not to mention losing time in this unnecessary fight.

2) The fundamental premise of needing to withdrawal your name and involvement from society to avoid culpability in what institutions who receive your name or money might do wrong is deeply flawed. The problem with this is that no matter who you transact with you have the same “problem.” They are most likely evil and will do non-ideal or non-godly things by their nature. If you are truly responsible to make sure you don’t associate with not just sinful behavior, but any non-ideal activity like sovereignty teaches on, you really have no choice but to disconnect from society completely and live in the forest alone. Because if you don’t, you never know who you transact with that is doing these nefarious activities that sovereignty obsesses over.

3) Finally, I noticed in the Bible that did Jesus contradicted the sovereignty theory outright in his actions. He never taught on anything remotely close to the idea of wide personal accountability for who you transact with that does non-ideal things. In fact, he interacted with, healed and otherwise aided sinners. Also, he paid his taxes as Peter attested (Mt 17:24-25). His reason when asked was that it was to avoid provoking those collecting (Mt 17:27). His concern was for living his life and getting things done; not to fight to make sure he gave no money or help that could be used non-ideally or even for the suffering of others.

Sovereignty sounds very noble, but you have to ask, “where do you draw the line?” if you are going to live a productive life and get anything else done? The answer is that it is an unrealistic ideal that can be a dangerous distraction from the true focus Jesus had and taught. That focus is to shine your light by loving and helping others (even evil/non-ideal others) rather than spending your time avoiding all association with evil or even non-ideal activities.