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Archive for February, 2008

Intelligent Design …….  

Hath not the potter power over the clay.

Yet in our day the clay pot says, “I have No Maker.” 

To the pot who has no maker where is your salt for your empty shaker

For the pot was made to be filled by the one who fills

If there be no one who fills, empty you set on your lonely hill

You judge the fools below who still believe there is a maker of the clay

All is well unless the maker is a shaker and not a faker we will all know one Day

                                                     The End?

Until then lets have a little controversy how about it.

http://www.expelledthemovie.com/playgroundvideo3.swf

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I’m stepping on my soap box. I miss Leonard Ravenhill He could speak / write and true conviction would fall on me. I would deal with another layer of the onion called pride and unbelief I keep in close proximity. I remember when Mike Bickle invited him to speak here in Kansas city around 1990. His book Why Revival Tarries is a classic beyond the grip of time, my father had introduced me to that book earlier. He was gone and a generation needed him.

Mike Bickle brought another man to Kansas city called Art Katz. Art would rock every ones world, they would scramble to see if what he was saying was really scriptural. We actually became like the bereans while He was in town. I would go to the International House of Prayer coffee shop just to listen to the 20 year olds debate Art’s words. He challenged me every time I heard him, its the closest thing to Ravenhill I know of, now He is gone. I miss him and I wait for another like Ravenhill or Katz to take their spot. One with both a history and a current walk with the Lord who refuses to compromise to the latest book written or latest word on Elijah List. They put it out there and they did not shrink back and they DID NOT GO WITH THE FLOW. Many of the prophetic voices in America started out that way but now you here one, you’ve heard them all. Hey YOU GUYS ITS NOT TO LATE TURN BACK AND JUST MAYBE THE CHURCH WILL FOLLOW.

Update : several months ago I had the extreme pleasure of visiting Ben Israel the home of Art Katz. I had gone on a small mission outreach led my friend Joel Snyder of KC. We stayed with Art and Mary Beebe. We were doing some outreaches at White Earth Rez. We were the ones ministered to. Wow hospitality and stories about their years with Art Katz.

Then listening to Inger tell stories about the west bank and Art stories only She would know. I was so humbled so blessed I just shook my head. And maybe above all was Mama Rose. To hear Her story was one thing but have Her pray for us, No wonder Art Katz had brought Her there. Ben Israel has a history as does Art and everyone has their view of it BUT for me Thank God for Art , His Wife His Kids His vision.

You want to be stired and challenged here is where you can check out two web pages with Art’s work. http://www.benisrael.org/                               http://artkatzministries.org/ 

My wife and I and our friends Dale and Jeanie Ritter have now been back up to Ben Israel several times. We love it, its like stepping back in time walking in rich spiritual history. It is good to remember what God has done through people despite their imperfections. It should give us hope that we too are building a history, and may those who come after, find us to have been faithful. We love all you guys who shared the journey with Art and Inger despite it all. The Beebes and the Brocks and friends carry the torch. Let another generation arise with like passion.

Katz

http://www.benisrael.org/

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Ravenhill    

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Most people find their identity and self worth from their job or in the things they do. Not my grandfather or my dad. Grandad was a strong man who had married my grandmother Sue who was 12 years younger than him. He carried in his persona what had been handed to Him, a strong German work ethic. My father Ron Gross grew up in those days just after the great depression and through World War 2. If eyes could see through that filter you would most certainly understand how love was not carried in words of sweet containers. Love was shown in those tough conditions by working long hard hours just to provide the simple necessities of life. It was the right container for the times and most knew it including dad. As it would happen times got better and dad made his way to Kansas City to find his place in the world.

It wasn’t long before dad had a job and settled in, until one Sunday night God called him to preach. That didn’t fit in with his father’s idea for his future, but dad obeyed God. Now granddad got over it pretty quick and even showed hints of liking the idea after awhile.

It was off to Southwest Baptist University for several years then to Ouachita Baptist University to complete his degree. It was there that he met my mother Evelyn Holmes who was working as one of the school nurses. Mom’s family made the ideal place to visit for Christmas. Her mother Leona demonstrated the best example of pure love I ever witnessed. Concerning mom, as they say the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Mom and dad married in 1959 and they were off to Kansas City for dad to attend Midwestern Theological Seminary. Dad pastored his first church in 1964 in Clarksburg followed by Olean, Adrian, Scott City, Warsaw, and Stockton all in Missouri.

Dad is a short man with small frame, don’t make the assumption that means weak or no fire. When dad steps behind the pulpit he is cloaked with strength and courage and pulls no punches. That is not an external thing, one night while we were living in Clarksburg I saw his internal fortitude. It was a hot night and of course we could not afford air conditioning so all the windows were open. We could not get to sleep for the heat and the pounding of bad speakers ringing with 1960’s country music coming from the local bar about a block away.

I think dad thought midnight was curfew for the sleepy little town so on went his pants and shirt and out the door he flew. I am not sure if he was polite at first but it quickly became polarized as they saw the PREACHER standing there demanding it be toned down for the communities sake. Up jumped a backslidden pentecostal preacher named Jim who came to dad’s defense. That was the end of the loud music and the beginning of Jim’s return to the Lord. Years later I was working in Harrisonville and ran into a man with the same last name and I asked him if he was related to Jim. He was and knew the history.

Through the years dad had his run in with trouble yet I never knew him to compromise his convictions. He had a temper if you pushed him far enough yet I never heard him utter as much as a bathroom word as he would call it. I know it helped having mom to bring a little restraint and offer some balance to dad’s life but overall he was a man of COURAGE though he never served in the military he was and is a warrior. He knows how to pray and where he gets his strength, he knows his weakness is the Lord’s strength. I know that Jesus has been the center of all his ministry and for all these things I am proud he is my Dad.

Here is his picture as young fire ball preacher and a couple of his pieces of art work he did in high school. In my opinion its a prophetic picture of who he would become in the spirit.

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Well here we are Dianna and I have made it 29 years. When we got married Feb 9th 1979 most people gave us a year. Nine days not months between our wedding and David’s birth had nothing to do with the jokes about people from Arkansas. Dianna was born in Hot Springs and my Mother was from Mena so we both have razorback blood in our veins. I love Arkansas, jokes and all.

Here are some funnies for ya. I love adventure so I took us on a scavenger hunt for chocolate “that’s Diannia’s favorite thing” for our anniversary. We started off at Rocky Mountain Chocolate factory and ended up in Cameron Missouri. We could not afford Cameroon so went to Cameron. We stayed at super 8 because of the indoor pool and 10 degree temperature outside, that was nice. We accumulated a huge stock of chocolate on our days journey we piled on the table and turned on the tv to catch the weather. Would you know the news had a chocolate recipe. Turned the channel to find the movie chocolate playing. Would you know it again, this time Charlie and the chocolate factory. We got a good laugh out of it.

The next morning we went out made ourselves some waffles. We struck up a conversation with a couple from pine-bluff Arkansas. Dianna told them She was from Hot Springs. The couple from the other side of us laughed and said they were from st. Paul Minnesota and were on their way to Hot Springs to play golf. What a small world.

It was a weekend full coincidences if you believe in them for us it was our Father in heaven giving us that little nod that He has been with us from the beginning and has orchestrated our path. On the way Home we stopped and saw NATIONAL TREASURE at the movies. It started my little noggin a thinken. Dianna found Her treasured chocolate this weekend I found my Arkansas Diamond 29 years ago. God Help me here and I’ll write Her Poem.

Dianna

You were ruff and tough, a true Tom boy to the core

The first day I saw you oh how my spirit soared 

You were like a mustang daring to be tamed

A loner never cring out for fame

I was a wild one, adventure would be my call

Our lives mixed together, like a painting on the wall

Colors differing, yet blending, and converging into one

On lookers set and wonder, what will it be, when done

Wisdom and zeal have found a home in We

We have given our selves to life, as we crucified our Me

We are one, We are the picture of one, and what is left is none   

Dianna I love Us Together, John

Thank you Jesus for investing your life in US !!!!

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My wife Dianna and I went for a drive through northwest Missouri. We drove through the little town of Hamilton and stopped at an antique store and looked around. Just before leaving town we saw one car in front of the local Library. Inside the Library was a museum of their famous one time resident. We were impressed with all the achievements He had made over His life time. He has been a hero of mine for years yet I must say it is through other people’s eyes I formed that opinion.

As we drove off I remembered the multiple sermons I have heard on tithing and how J. C. Penny had always given the tithe and that had taken Him to the top of American business men. I had few other thoughts also.

DID YOU KNOW that J. C. did not stand for Jesus Christ?  He did not have more money than God 

DID YOU KNOW that J. C. stand for James Cash? That is James Cash Penny is that ironic prophetic or just humorous.

DID YOU KNOW James Cash Penny was a member of the Masonic Lodge? I was surprised that, a man that was so open with Giving to the Lord was so secret about things that went on behind the doors of the Blue Lodge. He must have forgot the old song “It is no secret what God can do. What He’s done for others, He’ll do for you. With arms wide open, He’ll pardon you. It is no secret what God can do.”    

One more thing I was surprised with the lack of pictures of Him helping widows and orphans and the poor of the earth…….  He himself went through the great depression but going through it as a millionaire looks different than if He would have still been running the little store in Hamilton. Take a closer look and you’ll find at the age of 55 he lost it all. He had lost His first wife to Pneumonia in 1910 and His friend Francis Burgette Short, suggested that philanthropy might be a way to ease his pain. In 1924 He lost His second wife. In the year that followed, he established the J. C. Penney Foundation in His wife Mary’s memory. The Foundation aided such groups as adoption agencies, homeless shelters, youth clubs, vocational schools, libraries, family guidance centers, missionary projects, peace organizations, and health clinics. The combination of His strong belief in the Golden Rule and giving credit during the great depression thinking He would eventually be paid back. The depression was so great that His kindness bankrupted Him but the principal is godly and He rebuilt the empire and continued living and giving by the golden rule.

Serving the poor and needy is great but serving them to ease your pain is not serving them but you. Whether we serve from gilt or pain it can never compare to serving out of Love. J. C. was for sure a loving man, but I ponder what the lasting effects of His life could have been had He refused to join the lodge and used His philanthropies from a healed heart fully given to serving completely from the motive of LOVE.

In an hour of church history when Marketplace Christianity is so vital let us learn these lessons.

The Golden Rule is great but complete obedience greater 

Serve out of love not pain. If you are consumed by loss and pain let Jesus heal you up and let servitude flow from there.

Do not compromise by joining organizations or brotherhoods to move up the business ladder if you are, its not to late, the oath can be broken in Jesus name your neck and bowels are safe. You then can serve with bowels of mercy.  

KJV Col 3 12-17 12 Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; 13 Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. 14 And above all these things put on charity [LOVE], which is the bond of perfectness. 15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. 17 And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.

from verse 14 Charity strongs #26 NOUN ajgavph = Agape   websters 1607 Late Latin, from Greek agapē, literally, love

Below is a short Biography of the Life of J. C. Penny

J.C. Penney, real name James Cash Penney, Jr. He was born in Caldwell County, Missouri; He was the son of James Cash Penney, Sr., a primitive Baptist minister, and Mary Frances Paxton. J C was three years old when his family moved to Hamilton Missouri.

Penney graduated from Hamilton Public High School in 1893. He worked the family farm for couple years until going to work for a local Hamilton merchant. The dry goods store was called J.M. Hale & Bros. Penney left Missouri for the drier climate of Colorado. In 1898, he purchased a shop in Longmont. It failed when He did not lower His moral standard on liquor. He then went to work at the Golden Rule Store, a Longmont dry goods and clothing store. They became a buying syndication buying larger quantities giving the ability to pass on lower prices. He eventually became a partner in the store. The small beginning became the world famous J. C. Penny Retail chain.

During the 1920s they began developing their own brand. By 1929 they had become the largest dry goods retailer in America. Connected to their success was the fact they offered profit-sharing contracts with their managers. Because He shared His wealth J. C. became known as “The Man with a Thousand Partners.” J. C. lived by the golden rule after retirement He stayed a vital part of the business but began to speak and write about His Christian faith and moral principles that took Him to His destiny. He retired and used His money and influence in His new life of philanthropy.

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I worked with Harry Hartzler for 10 years in Harrisonville Missouri we were joined at the hip. We had hunting and fishing and work in common but most of all Jesus. Though our place of employment moved away we kept in close contact. Harry and His wife Marry did out reach mission trips to Mexico I did out reaches to Uganda. We would visit and I watched His children move from diapers to college. Several years ago Bethany the oldest Hartzler girl called a meeting with me and three of Her friends Amy, Rachel, and Stacie who wanted to spend their summer in Uganda.

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I set them up with contacts but argued with them for an hour that the whole summer was to long and what they would see would rock their world and they would need time to debrief for their return into American culture. We came to an agreement after they fought well and they did it for the biggest part of the summer. Not just did it but did it well. I truly believe that the Lord has raised them up for such a time as this. Below you can read an article written about two of the four. In December Stacie, Bethany and myself returned to Uganda and helped start an orphange with Richard Kaaya in Entebbe. We have recently applied for our 501c3 papers as we trust the Lord is leading as people are coming out of the woodwork to help. Lord have your way.

Story of our trip

https://riverflowsdown.wordpress.com/2007/12/29/precious-rose-story-worth-re-telling-adoption-not-abortion/

Adoption from Uganda

Posted by : Erin H in Africa AdoptionBlog at 01:33 am , 620 words, 412 views
Categories: Country Specifics – Adoption
Adoption.com’s Adoption Week e-magazine (which is free and full of great stuff) had a great article in it this week about teens in Missouri helping orphans in Uganda find loving adoptive homes in the United States.The story comes out of Kansas City, Missouri and is titled “Teens Help Ugandan Kids Find U.S. Homes”.The article is about Bethany Hartzler and her friend and college classmate, Amy Wolf, who helped navigate the international adoption process in Uganda for eight orphaned Ugandan children, including 10 year-old twin boys who are now Bethany’s new little brothers.It is hard to imagine two college girls handling the complex procedures of international adoption, especially ones from an African country without an established adoption program, however, that seems to be what happened in this case.Like many African countries that American and other adoptive parents would jump at the chance to adopt from if possible, Uganda has a three-year residency rule for adoptive parents. In 2005-2006, 12 children were adopted from Uganda by U.S. citizens, which shows that it is possible, but that the process is prohibitive enough that it is not an option for many parents at this time.Hartzler and Wolf went to Uganda on an orphanage mission trip, fell in love with the children there and became determined to help get them adopted, even though they had no idea how to go about doing that at first.The girls were able to find a way around the three-year residency rule, by getting the Ugandan court system to declare the adoptive family the child’s legal guardian. Then it is expected that the family will finalize the adoption in the United States under the state laws of the adoptive family. This is how most adoptions from South Korea have traditionally worked, with the parents being granted guardianship and then finalizing in the U.S. The children are able to get U.S. passports and visas legally this way.Hartzler and Wolf admit that the process was not easy or simple and describe it as a “huge challenge”, and said that they had to find and hire a Ugandan social worker and lawyer, and spent several months and about $5,000.

All eight children involved in this adoption story now live in the Kansas City area.

The article also goes in to some of the issues involved with adopting older children from different cultures, such as language and cultural differences, and the struggle for these kids to adapt to American life.

The blessings of international adoption are also made clear in this story, as the children involved were living in very destitute conditions without any family or love, and are now thriving with the love and care of their new adoptive families.

The U.S. Department of State International Adoption Uganda web page states that:

Ugandan law places restrictions on the ability of foreign citizens to adopt Ugandan children. The Children’s Act states that a foreign citizen may, in exceptional circumstances, adopt a Ugandan child, if the foreigner has resided in Uganda for at least three years and if the foreigner has also fostered the child for 36 months. However, High Court judges have made some exceptions to these three-year residency and fostering requirements on a case-by-case basis if it was deemed in the best interests of the child.Ugandan High Court judges have also exercised discretion in approving legal guardianship decrees (which may permit the child to emigrate for full and final adoption abroad) in certain cases where the prospective adoptive parents were unable to meet the requirements for adoption in Uganda.

__________________________________________________________________ Adoptions have happened because these girls are both hard headed and soft hearted and of cource God moved big time. I stole the article below from their web page since they have stolen my heart. I am so proud of them.You also will see that not only my friends the Hartzlers have adopted from Uganda but my great friends the Higgins. Their web page http://our4wishes.com/Heart%20for%20Uganda/About%20Us.html

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KATO SHON AND WASSWA ZION
The Hartzler’s added two new faces to their family and say the boys have “fit right in.” Shon Kato and Zion Wasswa, 10 year old twins, have been in the United States since October and instantly felt at home. The boys have experienced things they only dreamed of in Africa. Everyday they get to experience the joy of having a loving family. With two brothers, three sisters and an active mom and dad, the twins never feel lonely
Kato Shon and Wasswa Zion will never forget Uganda or their many friends in Uganda and want to help the orphans in Africa when they are older. They know that they can not do a lot right now, but beg every one of you to “help bring our friends home to America”.They love telling stories of going to Kampala in the taxis with Fyzel and kahluna to play soccer and of Tony asking for his friends in America and Rachel telling the older kids that she is coming to America to eat pizza. The twins will be waiting at the airport when the four kids come home and are already talking about helping them adjust to the American way of life.
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SALVATION JOSEPH
When Salvation was told he was coming to America, it was too good to be true. He did not believe God could love him so much. When the process was going slow, he continually begged God to get him home with his family in America. He knew America would be great but never could have imagined himself doing what he is doing now.
Salvation is currently in the 7th grade along with his sister Molly. He is learning subjects he would never have had the chance of learning while in Uganda. He tried a class in Spanish, but it was confusing his English so he transferred out and decided he should concentrate on his English for now.
Salvation will never forget the orphans in Uganda and plans on returning there as soon as he is done with school to start an orphanage with his older sister, MacKenzie, 18. If it is God’s will, he would also like to start an orphanage in China and South America and any other country he can. He knows what it is like to grow up in harsh conditions with out a family and wants to be that family for many.

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I am amazed that since I wrote this blog the level of offense has sky rocketed. Donald Trump, Republican party, conservatism and the list goes on and on as personal offense now leads to deep depression and anxiety. Politics must now be the number one cause of offense. That is my update, read on from the 2008 ramblings.

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I have been perplexed lately, its seems every one is offended about something. I feel like I am on a marry-go-round and need to yell stop, let me off. Enough already. I just heard a spill of complaints about it, and as I was thinking the words to this song were playing in my head. Read the words and listen to the song on the you-tube icon below and pick up my thoughts on the other side.

Misty Edwards

Baptize My Heart Lyrics

 

I can hear the song of the Creator as He sings over His creation
I played the flute for You…did You dance?
I sang the wedding song over You … were You romanced?
I played the funeral song and told You my judgments were coming did you lament?
For even children know when to dance!
Even children know the sound of the wedding
Even children know when to repent
At the sound of the funeral they lament!
Baptize my heart with Your fire, Your desire
I don’t want to be offended, I don’t want to be offended
I don’t want to be offended when it’s all coming down
I pledge my allegiance to Jesus
I pledge my allegiance to the Lamb

Jeremiah 12:5 “If you have run with the footmen, and they have wearied you, Then how can you contend with horses? And if in the land of peace, In which you trusted, they wearied you, Then how will you do in the floodplain of the Jordan?

 

I love this verse in Jeremiah in my simple language “if I can’t handle easy how I will take hard”. America has been over run with political correctness and it has spread into the church. We might as well have the CHURCH BILL OF RIGHTS.

We have no clue how to survive under persecution. The pre-tribulation rapture has the Church in heaven when it really gets bad. GET A CLUE it really is bad right now many places all over the earth.

We think we are God’s gift to the whole world only Jesus fits that bill. I am convinced we are about to experience in the next 10 years what the rest of the world deals with. We will then see if we can turn the other check, carry our cross or lay down our lives even unto death. All of my prophetic friends have 2008 as a new beginning well here is a beginning for us “beginning of sorrows” PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE Don’t be offended in this little blog let it be a reality check. This is boot camp it is time to learn to be long-suffering or to suffer long while it is easy. Hard times are coming FOR REAL.

I hang out at IHOP International House Of prayer in Kansas city where 24/7 prayer has been going on for years. Any way for us locals we try to catch Misty Edwards sets. The Lord has placed an anointing on Her Music that seems to draw me into repentance and then releases a season of refreshing.

Misty’s song challenges me to mature and say NO to offense, not just by people but by the Lord. What if the Lord has plans other than our particular end time view that alone will cause the greatest offense and shaking.

Matthew 11:6 And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.

Matthew 13:57 So they were offended at Him. But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country and in his own house.”

Matthew 15:12 Then His disciples came and said to Him, “Do You know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this saying?”

 This is hard to hear but He who has ears to hear, HEAR
Matthew 24:4-31
4 And Jesus answered and said to them: “Take heed that no one deceives you. 5 For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many. 6 And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all F131 these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. 7 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, F132 and earthquakes in various places. 8 All these are the beginning of sorrows. 9 Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. 10 And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another. 11 Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. 12 And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. 13 But he who endures to the end shall be saved. 14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come. 15 “Therefore when you see the ‘abomination of desolation,’ F133 spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place” (whoever reads, let him understand), 16 then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 17 Let him who is on the housetop not go down to take anything out of his house. 18 And let him who is in the field not go back to get his clothes. 19 But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! 20 And pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath. 21 For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. 22 And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened. 23 Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘There!’ do not believe it. 24 For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. 25 See, I have told you beforehand. 26 Therefore if they say to you, ‘Look, He is in the desert!’ do not go out; or ‘Look, He is in the inner rooms!’ do not believe it. 27 For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 28 For wherever the carcass is, there the eagles will be gathered together. 29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 30 Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31 And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

 

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