· The Daily Brief
· The Middle East in Focus
· The Olympics and Religious Liberty
· Al Qaeda Active in Mauritia
· Russia: Prophecy Clock Ticks Forward
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The Daily Brief Friday, August 15, 2008
"The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases. . . " (Lam. 3:22)
The Daily Brief
1. Pelosi joins Democrats softening their stance against offshore drilling - Los Angeles
TimesDemocratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is considering legislation that would permit new offshore drilling as part of a broad energy bill, a response to growing anxiety within her party that Republicans are gaining traction with election-year attacks that Democrats aren't doing enough to address high gasoline prices.
· Lord, we want to thank you for answering our prayers over the last few weeks. We ask for legislation that would open our resources and reduce fuel prices for the future.
· "O LORD, You are my God. I will exalt You, I will praise Your name, For You have done wonderful things; Your counsels of old are faithfulness and truth." ( Is.25:1)
2. MORE NEWS FROM RUSSIA AND GEORGIA
a. Russia to U.S.: Choose Us or Georgia - CNN
Russia pressed the United States on Wednesday to choose between "a real partnership" with Moscow or an "illusory" relationship with U.S. ally Georgia. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said the United States is standing by Georgia.
b. Russia Invasion of Georgia Sparks New Cold War Rhetoric - AP
In language reminiscent of the Cold War, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Thursday that the Pentagon is shutting down joint military exercises with Russia and will re-evaluate its relationship with the former Soviet nation after its attack on neighboring Georgia.
· Lord we fervently pray for wisdom on the part of our President and his staff at this time of crisis.
· "Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence." (1 Timothy 2:1,2)
3. Bush Demands Russians Get Out of Georgia - Fox News
President accuses Russia of 'bullying and intimidation,' says Georgia chose freedom and U.S. won't 'cast them aside.'
· Father, we pray for Russia to heed the voice of President Bush. May the way of freedom be lifted up and protected. Bring healing and restoration to the people who have suffered great loss already through this war.
· "Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the law of the Lord." (Ps.1:1-2)
4. Rice Arrives With Cease-Fire; Russian Blockade Continues - AP
A flurry of international diplomacy, meanwhile, was set in motion to clear the way for a Russian withdrawal. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrived Friday in Georgia for talks with President Mikhail Saakashvili.
· Lord, bless our Secretary of State as she meets today in Georgia. Give wisdom, guidance and success to the cease-fire agreements. Bring forth the solution for Your purpose and will to those making decisions.
· "I will bring the blind by a way they did not know; I will lead them in paths they have not known. I will make darkness light before them. And crooked places straight. These things I will do for them and not forsake them." (Is. 42:16)
· "I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with My eye." (Ps.32:8)
5. Poland, U.S. to sign missile shield deal - CNN
Poland and the United States will sign a preliminary deal to place part of a U.S. ballistic missile defense system in Poland -- a plan that has drawn sharp objections from Russia, the Polish president's office confirmed Thursday to CNN.
· Thank you, Lord, for making a way to station this defense system in a very strategic place. May it be a point of help and protection. We ask You to bless this project to effectively meet timely goals for all involved.
· "For I mean not that other men be eased and you be burdened: But by an equality, that now at this time your abundance may be a supply for their want; that their abundance also may be a supply for your want: that there may be equality."(2Cor. 8:13,14)
6. Russia: U.S. Missile Shield in Poland Won't Go Unpunished - AP
An agreement that will allow the United States to install a missile defense battery in Poland exposes the ex-communist nation to an attack, a Russian general said Friday. Poland and the U.S. struck a deal on Thursday to deepen military ties and place a missile interceptor base in Poland.Gen. Anatoly Nogovitsyn, deputy chief of the Russian general staff told reporters Friday that the agreement exacerbates U.S.-Russian relations that are already tense because of fighting between Georgian and Russian forces. He said the deal "cannot go unpunished." And in the strongest threat Russia has issued in reaction to plans to put elements of a missile defense system in former Soviet satellite nations, the Interfax news agency quoted Nogovitsyn as saying Poland was risking attack. "Poland, by deploying (the system) is exposing itself to a strike - 100 percent," Interfax quoted Nogovitsyn as saying.
· Lord, we ask protection for Poland. We put our trust in You to overcome the words of the enemy that seeks destruction. You are mighty to save.
· "The Lord is for me among those who help me; Therefore I shall see my desire on those who hate me." (Ps. 118:7)
The Middle East in Focus
The Middle East in Focus This week, for all the headlines cited below, please join us in proclaiming THIS DECREE: "May the LORD answer you in the day of trouble; may the name of the God of Jacob defend you." (Psalm 20:1)
1. Israel fears war could hurt Iran effort - Jerusalem Post
Russia's war with Georgia and the infuriated reaction in the West to what US President George W. Bush calls Moscow's "disproportionate response" could make it harder to enlist Russian help on the Iranian issue, according to Israeli diplomatic officials and academics.
2. PRC unveils new 'Nasser-4' rocket it says can reach Ashdod - Jerusalem Post
The Popular Resistance Committees (PRC) in the Gaza Strip have announced that they are in possession of "Nasser-4" rockets that have a range of 25 kilometers and pose a threat to Ashdod.
3. 'War led Israel to negotiate with Syria' - Jerusalem Post
Hizbullah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah on Thursday claimed that "Israel's failure in the Second Lebanon War led it to change its policy, from waging war with Syria to negotiating with it."
4. 'Livni will beat Mofaz 48%-38%' - Jerusalem Post
Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni will easily defeat her competitors in the September 17 Kadima leadership race without requiring a run-off contest a week later against her closest challenger, according to a poll obtained by The Jerusalem Post on Thursday.
The Olympics and Religious Liberty
The Olympics: Occasion for Renewed Calls for Religious Liberty
With the Olympics now underway, China has not diminished its human rights or religious liberty abuses. Pastor Zhang Zhongxin, arrested in July, and convicted of being "a cult member," of "organizing Sunday school activities" and "sharing the gospel," remains imprisoned. Zhang is appealing his two-year sentence to a re-education labor camp. Some of Zhang's church members were also imprisoned, others harassed by police, Bibles and Christian materials confiscated from their homes. His next hearing will be this Thursday, Aug. 14.
On the eve of President Bush's visit to the Beijing last week, a prominent house church leader, Zhang Mingxuan, and his wife Xie Fenlang were also arrested amid government fears that the Olympics will be used to highlight China's religious persecution. They are being held in an undisclosed location. Zhang has openly protested against what he views as China's harsh treatment of house church Christians. Meanwhile, three American Christian activists: Rev. Pat Mahoney (Christian Defense Coalition), Brandi Swindell and Michael McMonagle (Generation Life) were arrested in Beijing when they unfurled a banner reading "Jesus Christ Is King" in English and Chinese. They were briefly incarcerated then flown back to the States without their baggage. (Source: Family Research Council; Prayer Targets)
· Pray for our persecuted brethren; that those incarcerated will be set free, even while our Olympic teams compete. May the words of our President and a growing chorus of courageous protesters succeed in their press for change in China. May God move upon the White House and State Department to speak firmly and often until the persecution of Christians and other religious groups is brought to an end! May the advocates of liberty in this communist state be upheld by the Lord and succeed in their goals.
· "Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute." (Proverbs 31:8)
Al Qaeda Active in Mauritia
Al Qaeda Calls on Mauritians to Establish Islamic Caliphate
The Al-Qaeda Organization in the Islamic Maghrib (QOIM) is calling on citizens of Mauritania to fight the new military regime in their country and establish an "Islamic caliphate styled along the lines of Prophet Muhammad."The QOIM made its call to the western African nation in several Web forums affiliated with the organization. The announcement was signed by the organization's leader, Abu Mu'sab Abd Al-Wudoud. The QOIM is the reincarnation of Algeria's veteran Salafist Group for Call and Combat (GSPC), which transformed itself in January 2007 to become Al-Qaeda's branch in North Africa.
Last week, the democratic Mauritanian regime was overthrown in a military coup. The QOIM maintains that without the support of the "Zionist-Crusader alliance," led by Israel, France, and the United States, the coup would not have been possible. Al-Qaeda's branch in Iraq announced at the end of 2006 the establishment of an Islamic caliphate in a Sunni region in southern Iraq. The "caliphate" was not recognized by most Iraqis, including many Sunnis who are living in the region.
(By Staff, The Media Line, August 13, 2008)[Reported by: Bridges for Peace]
· Pray that the power and influence of terrorist groups will be of no effect. Pray that the disenchanted will not find a purpose in the incitement to hate, which Al Qaeda and their like continue to proclaim.
· "Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all sins." (Proverbs 10:12)
Russia: Prophecy Clock Ticks Forward
Prophecy Clock Ticks Forward with Russian Invasion of Georgiaand US Missiles in Poland
The bear is angry. For whatever reason, the cowardly and cunning Prime Minister of Russia, Vladimir Putin, chose to showcase his swift, revamped military to punish former Soviet state Georgia for being a sovereign nation. In typical Soviet style, Putin initiated his campaign under the media cover of the Olympics so as to not bring so much attention to his tantrum. In addition, he tried to blame the entire killing spree on Georgia for its undocumented "ethnic cleansing" of Russian citizens. So now, some two thousand or more people have been killed for no apparent reason other than Putin wanting to kill people.
The bear is angry. The Putin Soviet-style propaganda and military action so alarmed neighboring nations that Poland has quickly concluded a deal with the United States to place American defensive missiles on a Polish military base. Russia reacted harshly, saying that the move will further damage relations with the US that are already strained. Part of the deal with Poland includes US soldiers manning those missiles pointed at Russia and an agreement that if Poland is attacked by Russia, that America will assist in Poland's defense. Russia is saying that the missiles in Poland will do far greater damage to US-Russian relations than the public US opposition to Russia's invasion of Georgia.
The bear may be hungry. After a long hibernation from playing the Evil Empire on the front stage of the most real of reality shows-history--Russia may be making a move toward regaining its Soviet-era position of world dominance. Boosted by American help and training to become a more "capitalist" society, Russia has used its business profits and windfall from oil revenues to rebuild its military and to renew its old alliances with radical militant terrorist states. Nuclear deals with Iran and military supply deals with Syria, make Russia the kingmaker in the modern war of terrorism and Islamic aggression. Russia also renewed its nuclear bomber patrols and has talked with Cuba about putting missiles there.
An angry and hungry bear is not what the world wants to see right now. But as the prophecy clock ticks forward, Gog--modern day Russia--will rise again in power and someday flex its muscles enough to join with the Muslim world to attack Israel. As Iran develops its nuclear bomb and al Qaeda and the Taliban close in on taking over Pakistan's nuclear arsenal, the end time scenario found in Ezekiel 38 and 39 comes more clearly into focus. Ezekiel 38:16 says of Russia, "Thou shalt come up against my people of Israel, as a cloud to cover the land." In that latter day, the world will see the hand of God in a mighty way. Putin better watch his step, if he can help it.
The Daily Jot www.dailyjot.com