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What’s the difference between Apocalyptic Islamic eschatology & Biblical eschatology? And why does it matter? (Video & sermon notes)

In Uncategorized on January 18, 2016 at 6:08 pm

Harvest-Joel-preaching3NOTE: I am so grateful to God that four Iranian-Americans were released from prison in Iran over the weekend, including a Washington Post reporter and an Evangelical pastor. Click here to read more about how God was using Pastor Saeed Abedini to preach the Gospel inside the worst prisons of Iran.

(Riverside, California) — Yesterday here in Southern California, I did a Q&A session and delivered a sermon on the differences between Apocalyptic Islamic eschatology (End Times theology) and Biblical eschatology.

I explained why this topic matters, and why it’s particularly important right now.

This was the first of a series of messages I will be delivering as part of our month-long book tour for The First Hostage, and I’m very grateful to my friend, Pastor Greg Laurie, for inviting me. My intention is to post notes and the video or audio of each message along the way. I hope you find them helpful. Please feel free to comment on our Epicenter Team page on Facebook, and to share this with family, friends and colleagues on social media.

To watch the video of this message, please click here.

NOTES:

First, some background: Radical Islam is a serious threat, but it’s not the most dangerous threat the West faces. Apocalyptic Islam is far more dangerous.

Radical Islam seeks to attack us. Apocalyptic Islam seeks to annihilate us.

Radical Islam (al Qaeda, Hamas, the Taliban, Muslim Brotherhood, etc) uses violence for the purpose of persuading Jews, Christians and other so-called “infidels” to withdraw from — and leave entirely — the holy lands and holy places they consider their own, namely the Middle East and North Africa.

Apocalyptic Islam (such as the top leaders of Iran, and the leaders of the Islamic State) do not merely seek to drive infidels out of their region. They are driven by ancient Islamic prophecies. They believe the End of Days is at hand, that their messiah (known as the Mahdi) will come at any moment to establish an Islamic kingdom or caliphate that will rule over the entire globe, and that the way to hasten the coming of the Mahdi is to annihilate the infidels who refuse to submit to their brand of Islam.

To be clear: having an eschatology is not necessarily wrong. What is both wrong and horrific is having an eschatology that requires a person or an entire religion to rob, kill, destroy and even commit genocide to achieve their religious objectives.

Devout Jews believe the Messiah will come one day to establish a global kingdom (see Daniel 7, Jeremiah 23 and Isaiah 9, among other passages). Christians believe this as well and believe that Jesus of Nazareth is, in fact, that Messiah and that He will come again to establish His kingdom in the last days (see the Book of Revelation, among other passages). Having said that, it’s important to understand that both devout Jews and Christians believe God will supernaturally achieve these objectives. We do not believe that God requires us to slaughter our enemies en masse to bring about the End of Days and establish His kingdom.

Most world leaders do not understand these issues. Most citizens don’t either. But the rise of Apocalyptic, genocidal Islam makes it urgent that we and our leaders study and understand these distinctions. We cannot defeat an enemy we cannot or will not define.

There are some similarities within Islamic, Jewish and Christian teachings about the End Times. Indeed, when it comes to the study of eschatology, most devout Muslims (Sunnis and Shias), Jews and Christians — that is, those who take their holy books seriously and haven’t rejected or drifted from the orthodoxy of their religions — agree on five basic points.

  1. Ancient prophecies in our holy books give us signs to watch for that will indicate when the End of Days has come.
  2. So many signs are coming to pass in our time that we can be confident that we are, in fact, living in the End of Days.
  3. The Messiah is coming to earth, and it is possible that this will happen very soon.
  4. The coming Messiah is the King, He will establish a global kingdom, and He usher in justice and righteousness on the earth.
  5. Each of us must live differently in view of the fact that we are living in the End of Days and the fact that each of us will face the Final Judgment soon.

That said, the vast majority of the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims are not dangerous. Polling research indicates about 7% to 10% of Muslims worldwide subscribe to the concept of violent jihad to achieve their objectives. And while all devout Muslims believe the Mahdi is coming in the End Times to establish a global caliphate, the vast majority do not support violence much less genocide to achieve those ends. But some do, including the leaders of Iran and ISIS, and that’s what makes them so dangerous.

What, then, are the main differences between Apocalyptic Islamic eschatology (based on the Qur’an and the hadiths) and Biblical eschatology (based on the Old and New Testaments)? I’ve prepared a simple chart to draw out some of the important distinctions.ApocalypticIslam-chartSome important questions are these:

  • According to the Bible, how does one enter the Kingdom of God?
  • According to the Bible, how is one adopted into the royal family of God?
  • What did John the Baptist mean when he preached, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand”?
  • What did Jesus mean when he preached “the gospel of the kingdom”?

I hope you’ll take some time to watch this message in full.

For more resources, please see below:

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Breakfast with a CIA director. (And #TheFirstHostage climbs to #9 on Publishers Weekly bestseller list.)

In Uncategorized on January 15, 2016 at 4:56 pm

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(Washington, D.C.) — On Thursday morning, I had breakfast here in D.C. with Jim Woolsey, the former director of the Central Intelligence Agency. I gave him a copy of The First Hostage and had a chance to get Jim’s latest take on the twin threats of Iran and the Islamic State and the meltdown of U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East.

We discussed the differences between Radical Islam and Apocalyptic Islam, and I asked him specifically about his take on the Iran nuclear deal, given that it was arguably the biggest development in the Mideast in 2015. He told me he’d read the entire nuclear deal carefully and that as an arms control agreement, “It would be fine if it was a deal that had been made with Denmark.”

I love that line.

In other words, in Woolsey’s assessment, it’s not the language of the agreement, per se, that is so bad. It’s the fact that the deal was made not with a peaceful, benign, cooperative nation like Denmark, but with the fanatical regime in Tehran that openly calls for, “Death to Israel” and “Death to America.” It gives Iran both the ability to cheat — and thus build nuclear warheads — or to keep the deal and wait for another 10 to 15 years before breaking out to nuclear weapons capacity. Well put.

Woolsey also is deeply concerned the political correctness is causing many in the U.S. and the West to be unwilling to have an honest conversation about the threat posed not by the vast majority of Muslims, but by the small but significant subset of Radical Muslims who embrace violent jihad. If we cannot even have an honest conversation about the religious ideology driving our enemies, he notes, how can we fully protect ourselves and defeat these enemies?

Jim was very helpful to me in the early stages of my research for this novel series, and I’m very grateful for his insights. It was good to see him again.

Meanwhile, with threat of Islamic State terrorism dominating headlines, the polls, the State of the Union address, and the presidential campaign, The First Hostage is rising on the Publishers Weekly best-seller list. This week, the political thriller about ISIS climbed to #9 on the Publishers Weekly hardcover fiction best-seller list, up from #13 last week.

The First Hostage is the second novel in a new series about a New York Times foreign correspondent who finds himself caught in the middle of an unfolding plot by the Islamic State to launch a genocidal attack with chemical weapons, overthrow the Kingdom of Jordan, and capture and behead the President of the United States. The first novel in the series, The Third Target, released in January of 2015.

Thank you so much to all of my readers, young and old, loyalists and newcomers to my work. I’m deeply grateful for the very kind notes you’ve been sending me and the encouraging reviews of these two books. Thanks, too, for all you’re doing to write about and review the novels on Facebook, Twitter and other social media and let your friends know about the book.

This weekend, I’ll begin several weeks of traveling the country to talk about the novels, how they relate to fast-moving current events, and the difference between Islamic eschatology and Biblical eschatology. That begins this weekend when I’ll be preaching at Pastor Greg Laurie’s congregations in Southern California. For more details, please follow us on Twitter and on our Epicenter Team page on Facebook.

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President Obama carves out 5 minutes for Jordan’s King. That’s right, five minutes. God have mercy. Let me explain.

In Uncategorized on January 13, 2016 at 11:41 pm

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(Washington, D.C.) — After initially refusing to make time to meet with America’s most faithful Sunni Muslim Arab ally in the hot war against ISIS, President Obama changed his mind and decided to make time after all.

For five minutes.

Yes, you read that right — five minutes.

“President Barack Obama made a last-minute detour on his way out of Washington on Wednesday to greet Jordan’s King Abdullah, after originally planning to skip meeting with the close ally,” reports CNN. “The White House had cited preparations for his State of the Union speech for preventing a more formal sit-down earlier in the week and indicated there were plans to meet in the near future.”

“This is insane,” I told CBN News on Tuesday. “The King of Jordan is probably the most faithful Sunni ally that the United States has, and President Obama doesn’t have time to meet with him?”

On the blog, I went further. “This stunning decision by Mr. Obama to snub the King of Jordan is as nonsensical as it is offensive. Jordan is in a hot war with the Islamic State. The King, a Muslim — indeed a descendent of Muhammad — is doing a heroic job confronting this barbaric enemy. How in the world could the President not make time to meet with him, listen to his perspective, and talk about how to work even more closely together?”

The Jordanian King is fighting ISIS. He is bombing ISIS. He is providing intelligence so we can bomb ISIS. He wants to do more. His life and his kingdom are in grave danger. ISIS is gunning for him, and he knows it.

Fine, so the President changed his mind. But five minutes? This is almost as offensive as not meeting with the King at all. It sends a terrible message to U.S. allies the world over that the President cannot be trusted to be a good friend when the chips are down.

Mr. Obama has one more year in office. We cannot afford for him to make such serious mistakes, one after another. We need him to lead, to protect us and our allies. I pray that the Lord would protect him and his family, and that the Lord will open his eyes and change his heart and help him understand Radical and Apocalyptic Islam and how to protect us from both.

“On Wednesday, the White House announced that an unscheduled meeting had been held after all,” CNN noted. “Obama walked from his Marine One helicopter on the tarmac of Joint Base Andrews to the passenger lounge, where Abdullah was awaiting his own flight from the military installation later in the day. The meeting lasted less than five minutes.”

The CNN report noted that “Abdullah did meet with Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday and Secretary of State John Kerry and Defense Secretary Ash Carter on Monday.” The report also stated that the President promised to meet with the King again later in 2016. I hope so.

Given the high stakes of this war — given that ISIS wants to topple the Kingdom of Jordan, and is testing how to use chemical weapons — the President should be treating Jordan and all our Middle East allies far better. If he continues to go down the path he’s on, God have mercy on us all.

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“ISIS may be testing chemical weapons as terror group rapidly expands,” reports Fox News.

In Uncategorized on January 13, 2016 at 7:32 pm

ISIS-baghdadi(Washington, D.C.) — In a chilling story that seems ripped from the pages of The Third Target and The First Hostage, Fox News is reporting that “there is growing evidence that ISIS is experimenting with chemical weapons,” and that “the number of foreign fighters [has] hit a new high.”

Last year, just 20,000 foreign fighters were operating as part of the ISIS shock troops, Fox reports. Now that number has skyrocketed to 36,000, and they come from 120 countries.

Former deputy CIA director Mike Morrell, testifying before Congress on ISIS’s development of chemical weapons capabilities, warned that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and the leaders of ISIS “have made two things very clear publicly in documents that have come out. One is that if they acquire these weapons they would use and they wouldn’t care that the vast majority of those killed were civilians. and they have also provided a religious justification very similar to Al Qaeda’s, in fact I think it is identical to Al Qaeda’s justification for using such weapons.”

This is not the first report of ISIS pursuing chemical weapons. I first cited a spate of news stories about this last August.

It should not be surprising that the Islamic State is pursuing the development and deployment of chemical weapons. Its leaders and members have apocalyptic, genocidal ambitions. They want to find ways to kill larger and larger numbers of “infidels.” They want to bring about the end of the world as we know it, and usher in the coming of the their messiah known as the Mahdi, all to build a global Islamic kingdom or caliphate. Their fervency and urgency and their barbaric savagery is what is attracting so many foreign fighters.

This is the very premise of my latest series of political thrillers. Unfortunately, what I’ve written about as fiction is not fiction at all — it’s the ISIS game plan and it is extremely dangerous. President Obama and the presidential front-runners give no evidence that they understand the threat of Apocalyptic Islam. But it’s time to take their heads out of the proverbial sand. The threat is real, and it’s growing.

Excerpts from the Fox News report:

  • There is growing evidence that ISIS is experimenting with chemical weapons as the number of foreign fighters hits a new high, according to current and former government officials.
  • Photos taken by the Kurds in northern Iraq last summer and fall and reviewed by Fox News show burns and blistering on the skin that a source on the ground there said are consistent with the use of chemical agents. The agents were described as “odorless, colorless and absorbed through the clothing,” causing burns or illness hours later.
  • “I think it’s, could be a perfect testing ground,” former FBI intelligence officer Timothy Gil Sr. said. “They (ISIS) were particularly interested in using these chemicals in confined space environments, soft targets like shopping malls and movie theaters.”
  • Gill who is doing his own independent research for an upcoming international conference on weapons of mass destruction said there is a disturbing trend, that ISIS is using safe havens in Syria, Iraq and potentially Libya as laboratories to learn how chemical agents impact the battlefield, with the goal of sharing their expertise via social media with ISIS followers outside the region.
  • “It’s enough to use in a crude weapon that could really push the panic button,” Gill said. “This now provides an opportunity to say ‘this is working, we’re now going to push this out to any potential lone wolf, lone actor that may have a background in chemistry.'”
  • A doctor who was in northern Iraq last year and asked not to be identified for security reasons, said he treated Kurdish fighters whom ISIS used as “lab rats for WMD,” adding that the variety of burns and illnesses over several weeks suggested to him that “mustard gas, precursors, as well as neurotoxic acids” were being tested….
  • While ISIS tries to broaden its use of unconventional weaponry, the terror group also has broadened its appeal. A US intelligence official confirms to Fox News the number of foreign fighters has hit a new high — more than 36,000 from 120 countries since the conflict began in 2011, including at least 6,600 from Western countries.
  • A year ago, at the worldwide threat hearing on Capitol Hill, where the U.S. intelligence community publicly presented its global view on terrorism, the Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper said that since the conflict began, more than 20,000 foreign fighters from 90 countries had travelled to the region.  A key figure is the number of countries affected, with the extremist ideology now drawing followers from 60 percent of the world’s nations.
  • During congressional testimony before the House Armed Services Committee Wednesday, former senior intelligence officials said ISIS is expanding.
  • “ISIS has gained affiliates faster than Al Qaeda ever did — from nothing a year ago, there are now militant groups in nearly 20 countries that have sworn allegiance to ISIS,” former CIA deputy director Mike Morell said.  “They have conducted attacks that have already killed Americans.”
  • On the development of unconventional weapons, Morell added, “They have made two things very clear publicly in documents that have come out. One is that if they acquire these weapons they would use and they wouldn’t care that the vast majority of those killed were civilians. and they have also provided a religious justification very similar to Al Qaeda’s, in fact I think it is identical to Al Qaeda’s justification for using such weapons.”
  • The Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL (ISIS) recently briefed reporters in Washington DC, emphasizing the overall trend line is in the right direction, pointing to progress securing the Turkish border to stem the flow of foreign fighters.
  • “This is a challenge like we’ve never seen before,” Brett McGurk said, “The world has never seen something like this, upwards of 35,000 now foreign fighters from 100 countries all around the world supercharged by social media and Twitter and everything.

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Iranian regime emboldened after seizing two US Navy vessels, holding 10 sailors in custody, requiring “apologies,” and then releasing humiliating images of their captivity.

In Uncategorized on January 12, 2016 at 10:59 pm

BreakingNews-Iran10sailors>> Wednesday morning update: Iran releases 10 US Navy sailors after boat drifted in Persian Gulf (Fox News)

Iran’s tyrannical regime is feeling emboldened today.

It has been increasingly aggressive in recent months without penalty (burning down the Saudi Embassy, sending military forces into Syria, sending forces into Iraq, helping overthrow the Sunni regime in Yemen, etc). It humiliated the Obama administration on the eve of the President’s State of the Union address. And if this weren’t enough, on Monday the Iranians are expecting the White House and international community to end economic sanctions and release to Tehran upwards of $50 billion in frozen assets.

Did the President even mention Iran’s seizure of our Navy personnel in his State of the Union address last night? No. Did he mention any of Iran’s aggressive behavior? No. Rather, he praised his nuclear deal with Iran as a model of international diplomacy.

With the release of my new book, I’ve been speaking much about the threat posed by the Islamic State in recent weeks. But let’s be clear: the Apocalyptic Islamic tyrants running Iran are 10,000 times more dangerous than those running ISIS.

  • Iran is a country of 80 million people with a full blown army, navy and air force.
  • Iran has ballistic missiles.
  • Iran has legions of terrorist fighters, and alliances with terrorist organizations around the world.
  • Iran has an entire nuclear infrastructure that puts them on the road to a nuclear weapons arsenal.
  • Iran has a history of waging war and terror on its enemies and has vowed to export its Islamic revolution around the globe.

This is not a regime the White House should be appeasing. Yet that’s exactly what President Obama is doing, and it’s a very dangerous road he is taking us down.

ORIGINAL POST: (Virginia Beach, Virginia, Tuesday afternoon) — Just hours before the President delivers his State of the Union address, Iran has seized two U.S. Navy vessels in the Persian Gulf and are now hosting ten American sailors hostage.

The official Iranian news service says the U.S. sailors have been “arrested.”

The White House is insisting that Iran’s actions suggest no hostile intent.

A few initial thoughts to this developing story:

  • Iran’s tyrannical regime has clearly been emboldened by the foolish nuclear deal President Obama, and Tehran keeps ratcheting up its hostile actions.
  • Iran recently fired on US Navy ships.
  • Iran has allowed mobs to storm and burn the Saudi embassy.
  • Now Iran has seized ten US sailors.
  • Will Iran hold on to these sailors — plus 4 others Americans Iran is holding (including American Pastor Saeed Abedini) — until the U.S. releases $150 billion in frozen assets as part of the nuclear deal?
  • The President should announce he will not release a dime to Iran unless every American is released by Iran and returned safely to the U.S.

The whole situation has thrown a monkey wrench in the President’s plans for his address to Congress and the nation tonight. He desperately wants to say that his “Obama Doctrine” of negotiating with our mortal enemy is a good thing and will produce good results. The truth is we’re edging dangerously close to Jimmy Carter territory here.

Here’s what we know so far:

“Ten American sailors are in Iranian custody after two small U.S. naval craft apparently briefly entered Iranian territorial waters, a U.S. senior defense official said Tuesday,” CNN is reporting. “The official, however, expects the situation to be resolved quickly. A senior administration official said there is nothing to indicate this was anything hostile on the part of any entity in Iran, adding that the U.S. has received high-level assurances that the sailors will be released promptly.”

“White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told CNN’s Jake Tapper that President Barack Obama will be in touch with members of Congress about the incident,” CNN notes.

“Certainly, everybody should be aware of the fact we have been in touch with the Iranians and they have assured us that our sailors are safe and that they’ll be allowed to continue their journey promptly,” Earnest said.

“A U.S. official said the sailors may be spending the night in Iran, and it’s not expected that they would depart until after daylight,” CNN added. “A senior administration official told CNN that the U.S. lost contact with the two ships, which were en route from Kuwait to Bahrain….The U.S. is uncertain whether the vessels, which were sailing near Farsi Island in the Persian Gulf, intentionally entered Iranian waters, and the senior defense official said no distress call was made by the ships….The Fars News agency also reported that the American boats were equipped with three, 50-caliber machine guns. The boats crossed a little more than a mile into Iranian-patrolled waters, reported Fars, which cited information recorded on the GPS device of the American vessels and now in the hands of the IRGC. Fars also reported that the ‘arrested’ sailors were nine men and one woman.”

“Rosenberg Blasts Obama for Snubbing Jordan’s King Abdullah,” reports CBN News.

In Uncategorized on January 12, 2016 at 9:06 pm

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(Virginia Beach, Virginia) — The following is an article published by CBN News:

President Barack Obama’s decision to pass on meeting Jordan’s King Abdullah is a sign that the president doesn’t understand the Middle East or how to fight radical Islam, author and Middle East expert Joel Rosenberg told CBN News.

Jordan is a key U.S. ally in the Middle East and the fight against the Islamic State. Abdullah is in Washington this week, but Obama, who will give his final State of the Union Address tonight, has declined to meet with him citing “scheduling conflicts,” according to a report by The Times of Israel.

“He had time for Matt Lauer this morning on the ‘Today Show.’ You know, I mean, carve out 15 minutes, 30 minutes, an hour with our main ally in the most dangerous fight that we are in right now,” he continued. “This just goes to the heart of it, if you understand Islam, if you understand the Middle East, then meet with your allies.”

A White House official said the two leaders will meet “in the near future,” according to The Times report.

Abdullah met with Vice President Joe Biden Tuesday and Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Defense Ash Carter on Monday.

The Times reports Abdullah and Kerry held talks about defeating the Islamic State and reviving peace talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians. That discussion included conversations about the Temple Mount and ongoing disputes between parties on both sides.

A Pentagon spokesman said Carter told Abdullah he deeply appreciates Jordan’s help in countering the Islamic State.

The Islamic State has conquered large parts of Iraq and Syria and proclaimed itself a caliphate. The radical Islamic army has attacked and killed religious minorities and turned women into sex slaves.

[To watch the full segment of my comments on the President’s snub of King Abdullah II, please click here]

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“The state of the Middle East is a catastrophe.” My interview with CBN on the State of the Union, the presidential front-runners & the visit by Jordan’s King to Washington.

In Uncategorized on January 12, 2016 at 8:39 pm

CBN-FirstHostage2(Virginia Beach, Virginia) — This morning, on the day President Obama was scheduled to deliver his final State of the Union address tonight before a Joint Session of Congress, I was interviewed on the Christian Broadcasting Network.

We discussed President Obama’s performance in the Middle East, the President’s stunning refusal to meet this week with Jordan’s King Abdullah II who is on an official visit to Washington, and whether the two presidential front-runners are better prepared than Mr. Obama to deal with the rising threats in the Middle East.

“The state of the Middle East right now is a catastrophe,” I explained. “President Obama’s policies in the Middle East have been an utter failure because he has chosen, ideologically, to withdraw all U.S. forces and influence from the region….The region is on fire.”

“Syria is in a total meltdown — we’re watching the implosion of a modern Arab state and an absolute human catastrophe,” and the President has offered no plan to turn things around.

What’s more, in 2015, Mr. Obama signed off on an insane nuclear deal that I noted will give Iran “two pathways to The Bomb” — one if Iran cheats on the deal, and the other if Iran keeps the deal, waits ten years until all the restrictions are removed, and then races to build a whole arsenal of nuclear warheads.

Meanwhile, the President is making Israeli leaders and Sunni Arab leaders feel that he has abandoned them while emboldening their worst enemy, Iran, and doing precious little to defeat the forces of the Islamic State.

“What is the President doing?” I asked. “The President today is refusing to meet with Jordan’s King Abdullah, who is in Washington this week, because he’s too busy. Too busy for our most faithful Sunni Arab ally?”

[Let me add: This stunning decision by Mr. Obama to snub the King of Jordan is as nonsensical as it is offensive. Jordan is in a hot war with the Islamic State. The King, a Muslim — indeed a descendent of Muhammad — is doing a heroic job confronting this barbaric enemy. How in the world could the President not make time to meet with him, listen to his perspective, and talk about how to work even more closely together. The President took time to meet with Matt Lauer of the TODAY Show this morning. I watched that interview. To refuse to meet with an ally in wartime in disgraceful.]

“The Saudis feel like the President of the United States has cut and run [from our allies],” I added during the interview. “The Jordanians feel this way. So do the Egyptians. The Israelis have the worst relationship with this President in the history of the country. So the region feels scared by two existential threats — Iran, ISIS, and their Apocalyptic Islam.”

“This has been a catastrophic year in U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. If the President of the United States comes out tonight and says that the state of the union is strong and the state of our foreign policy, nobody in the region — much less in our country — will believe him.”

“You cannot defeat an enemy you refuse to define. And I’m saying the President still won’t call Radical Islam by its name. But Apocalyptic Islam is much worse. Why? Because Radical Islam wants to attack us, to drive us out of the holy lands and the holy places. But Apocalyptic Islam doesn’t simply want to attack us, it wants to annihilate us and bring about genocide, in order to usher in the coming of their messiah.”

“The novels — The Third Target, and now The First Hostage — take you, through the eyes of a reporter [J.B. Collins], inside this story to understand what might happen, worst case scenarios, if our leaders don’t understand the threats that we face. The President doesn’t understand it. But I’m also concerned that the two front-runners in the presidential campaign, Secretary Clinton and Mr. Trump , that neither of them understand Apocalyptic Islam or are prepared to deal with it.”

[To watch the full interview I did with CBN’s Pat Robertson, which runs 10:54 minutes, please click here]

NOTE: We will post the full transcript soon.

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As President prepares for final State of the Union, nation has lost confidence in his ability to defeat Islamic terror. The latest polling.

In Uncategorized on January 11, 2016 at 11:10 pm

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(Virginia Beach, Virginia) — During his 2015 State of the Union address, President Obama never mentioned the terms “Islam” or “Islamic extremism” or “Radical Islam” or “Apocalyptic Islam” or even “al Qaeda.”

He never even used the term the “Islamic State,” calling our very serious enemy “ISIL” instead. He insisted that “in Iraq and Syria, American leadership — including our military power — is stopping ISIL’s advance,” even though at that point the Islamic State had essentially doubled its territorial gains over the course of 2014, was slaughtering Muslims, engaged in genocide against Christians and Yazidis, and had recently seized Mosul, the second largest city in Iraq.

What’s more, Mr. Obama insisted that the mortal threat facing the American people wasn’t from a nuclear Iran or a genocidal Islamic State. Rather, he said that “no challenge — no challenge — poses a greater threat to future generations than climate change.”

Even by August 28, 2015, after the Islamic State had seized more than one-third of the territory of Iraq and James Foley, an American journalist, had been beheaded by ISIS, the President admitted that “we don’t have a strategy yet” to defeat ISIS.

In November of last year, the President insisted in November that his policy had “contained” ISIS. The next day came the terror attacks in Paris, and soon thereafter the attacks in San Bernardino.

What, then, will the President say on Tuesday night, when he delivers his final State of the Union address?

Will he finally acknowledge the threat of Radical and Apocalyptic Islam?

Will explain them — and their differences — to the American people? Will he lay out a comprehensive strategy to actually defeat ISIS?

Most Americans aren’t holding their breath for such decisive leadership. In the wake of the attacks in San Bernardino and Paris and in so many other places — and FBI arrests of at least 80 ISIS loyalists operating here in the homeland — the American people have lost confidence in President Obama’s ability to protect us from the terrorists.

More Americans than ever before now believe the terrorists are winning, and the U.S. is losing the global war with Radical Islam. In fact, a recent CNN poll found a 17-point jump in the number of Americans who believe the terrorists are winning.

What’s more, the CNN poll reveals that:

  • Only 18% of Americans believe that the U.S. and our allies have the upper hand against the terrorists.
  • Three-out-of-four Americans (74%) do not believe the United States is doing an effective job in the war against Radical Islamic terrorism.
  • Nearly two-out-of-three Americans (64%) specifically disapprove the way President Obama is handling the threat posed by the Islamic State.

The central theme of my recent novels — The Third Target and The First Hostage — is this: “To misunderstand the nature and threat of evil is to risk being blind-sided by it.”

To the extent that President Obama and his senior team continue to fail to truly comprehend the evil we and our allies are facing from Iran and the Islamic State, the more dangerous a year 2016 is likely to be.

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Why is ISIS trying feverishly to lure the U.S. into a ground war in Syria? The answer lies in ancient Islamic prophecies of a place called “Dabiq.” (My interview on Fox News)

In Uncategorized on January 11, 2016 at 1:23 pm

Bream-Rosenberg-FirstHostageDabiq-first3issues(Washington, D.C.) — In my latest novel series — The Third Target and The First Hostage the leaders of the Islamic State launch a carefully-coordinated plot to blow up an Israeli-Palestinian peace summit, capture the President of the United States, and lure the U.S. and Western alliance into a ground war in Syria.

While the books are fiction, they are based on actual ISIS strategy. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the head of ISIS, and his inner circle are, in fact, feverishly trying to draw the U.S. into a ground war in Syria.

The question is: Why? The answer lies in an obscure town in northern Syria called “Dabiq.” On Fox News yesterday, I explained why Dabiq is so important to the ISIS leadership.

To watch the video, please click here. Also, here’s the transcript.

AUTHOR WARNS AGAINST “APOCALYPTIC ISLAM”

FOX NEWS ANCHOR SHANNON BREAM: The fight against terror — both home-grown and global — is a top concern for those tuning into the President’s final State of the Union address Tuesday. What is the President’s strategy and how important are the exact words he uses when outlining the global terror threat? Joel Rosenberg is a best-selling author who has written extensively about the realities of the newest threat, which he calls “Apocalyptic Islam.” His brand new book, The First Hostage, has just been released, and I am at the edge of my seat getting through it — an excellent book. And you use fiction to communicate ideas that you think are important as a way of helping people learn about the threats and what’s going on, but in an entertaining, fascinating way.

JOEL C. ROSENBERG: Tom Clancy did it. Vince Flynn did it. It is a good way. A lot of people don’t want to read a 900 page book on Islamic theology or history. But they understand that it’s real and it’s urgent, and this is a way to get into the story.

BREAM: You and I have talked about the fact that al Qaeda and that threat, obviously, murderous around the globe, but this is — you say — ISIS to a new level. It’s not simply radical. You’re using the word apocalyptic, that they want to bring about the end of the world, essentially.

ROSENBERG: That’s right. The Islamic State’s magazine is called, Dabiq. D-A-B-I-Q. Most people have no idea what that means. It’s a little town in the north of Syria. Why is that important? Because they believe, based on ancient Islamic prophecies, that the Western world — “the forces of Rome” — will be drawn to that spot for the second-to-last battle of all history, and that the West will lose, and the Islamic State will win, and then they head to Jerusalem. The idea is that they believe that the End of Days has come, their messiah — known as the “Mahdi” — will come reign over the entire world at any moment. They’re driven by an Islamic eschatology that’s genocidal. And that’s why it’s so dangerous. And yet most leaders — including the President and our two front-runners on the Democrat and Republican side — they don’t understand it. They don’t talk about it. That’s a problem.

BREAM: Well, what you’re saying — what you’re outlining, their whole purpose and mission — it seems to be driven by theology, by their beliefs about the End Times. But as you mention, we have a lot of leaders who want to say, “This isn’t a religious group. They are not Islamic. They’ve hijacked, or they’re using, the religion simply as a vehicle for their violence, but it’s not based on religion.” But it sounds like the way that you’re describing it, it’s completely based on they’re understanding of it.

ROSENBERG: You can decide that you don’t want to want it to be based on religion, but that’s what they believe. Now, we’re not talking about all 1.6 billion Muslims. You know, I’ve got characters in here [in my novels] who are Islamic leaders, Arab leaders — they’re Muslims, they’re not evil. What’s evil is to have an End Times theology, that you’re trying to bring about the end of the world, and you believe you need to kill every Jew, Christian, and others you would call an “infidel,” to get to your Islamic global kingdom. This is what’s defining ISIS. This is what’s actually defining Iran’s leadership — not the people, but the leaders. The difference is that ISIS wants to build the caliphate now, so they’re killing, slaughtering now, whereas Iran wants to build the pathway to nuclear weapons so when they get ready to launch the caliphate war it will be genocidal by the millions, not just the tens or hundreds of thousands.

BREAM: So how do you respond to those who say, “This sounds like crazy talk. It sounds cuckoo, all these theories and prophecies”?

ROSENBERG: Well, it is. And you have to distinguish this. Jews have an eschatology. Jews — I’m Jewish on my father’s side — we believe the Messiah is coming at one point. Christians — I’m an Evangelical — believe that Jesus is coming to set up a Kingdom. The difference is the genocidal nature [of Islamic eschatology], [they’re determination] to annihilate all of Israel and the United States and all infidels. So it is a crazy eschatology, End Times theology, but to ignore it, to ignore what’s actually animating both the Islamic State leaders and the Iranian leaders, is incredibly dangerous. Because one of the themes in my novels — including The First Hostage — is, “If you misunderstand the nature and threat of evil, you risk being blindsided by it.” This [novel] is about ISIS trying to capture and behead the President of the United States, as they draw us into a ground war in Syria, based on their ancient Islamic prophecies. And you have to understand your enemy if you’re going to defeat them.

BREAM: Well, as with all your books, it’s a great way to be entertained and informed at the same time. It is a wild ride. We wish you much success with it. Thanks for stopping in, Joel Rosenberg. Best wishes.

ROSENBERG: It’s good to be with you.

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What’s the difference between Radical Islam & Apocalyptic Islam? (My interview with Stuart Varney on the Fox Business Channel.)

In Uncategorized on January 9, 2016 at 1:36 pm

Varney-FirstHostage2(Washington, D.C.) — “Joel, the premise of your book is that ISIS and Iran, they want to bring about the end of the world as we know it. It’s that kind of cataclysmic [threat]. Make your case.”

That’s how Stuart Varney on the Fox Business Channel began our interview. You can watch the video by clicking here.

We discussed The First Hostage, the enormous threat posed by the Islamic State, and particularly the difference between Radical Islam and Apocalyptic Islam. It was my first time on the program and I’m grateful to Stuart for having me on and wanting to have this important discussion.

NOTE: This Sunday, I’ll be interviewed by Shannon Bream on the Fox News Channel in the 1pm eastern hour. We’re scheduled to discuss my Jerusalem Post column on what the next President of the United States needs to know about ISIS and Iran. Please tune in if you can.

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