UPDATED: BRACE FOR IMPACT. Hillary on verge of defeat. Trump-Pence on verge of victory. Media and markets reeling in shock. (Some thoughts on Election Day as we await the results.)



  • It’s 9:30 in the morning in Israel. Lynn and I have been up since 5am watching the election results come in and what a stunning night.
  • It looks like the Trump-Pence team is poised to win (along with a GOP majority in the House and Senate).
  • The Hillary team is bracing for impact — not conceding yet, but visibly shaken by how voters have turned against her en masse.
  • True, the races in many states are still very close — the AP has called Pennsylvania for Trump which appears to give him the presidency, but Fox News isn’t ready to call it for Trump at this hour.
  • The Trump-Pence team is bracing for impact — cautiously preparing for the increasingly real possibility that they have done the impossible and will have the enormous responsibility of governing come January.
  • The media and markets are reeling — in total shock over what appears to be developing when they never saw it coming.
  • We’re still praying Hillary can and will be stopped from every taking office.
  • We’re still praying we can actually get pro-life Supreme Court Justices, and repealing Obamacare, and so many other positive policies.
  • We’re cautiously optimistic. But we’re still “bracing for impact” as our new day begins here. May the Lord have mercy on us all.
  • >> Here’s an additional interview I did yesterday on CBN News on Evangelicals and the elections.

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8: Soon, we will know who the next President of the United States will be.

Yet as that moment approaches, I keep thinking of the takeaway line from the recent film, “Sully.” The last words the captain of that Airbus A320 told his passengers as the plane’s engines failed and they headed for a crash landing on the Hudson River were as chilling as they were sobering.

Brace for impact.

Like that plane, America is rapidly losing altitude. We need a captain who can steer us to safety. As you know, I have serious reservations about Mr. Trump. But I shudder to imagine Hillary Clinton at the controls.

Today, here in Israel, I did a live interview on Facebook with a reporter for the Christian Broadcasting Network discussing this very topic — brace for impactin more depth. It runs about 17 minutes. Please click here to watch.

In the meantime, let us keep praying without ceasing that the Lord may have mercy on America at such a dangerous and decisive moment.


UPDATE ON MY LAST COLUMN:  On Thursday, I wrote a column on this blog explaining why I changed my position from #NeverTrump to voting for the Trump-Pence ticket. I expected a range of reactions — from anger to disappointment to agreement — and got these and many more.

What I didn’t expect was the magnitude of the interest.

On a typical day, my blog receives between 3,000 and 6,000 views. Before this particular column, the most views my blog had ever received in a single day was just over 83,000.

But over the last few days, this column on my reluctant conversion away from the #NeverTrump camp went viral. On Thursday, it was viewed by 104,449 people. On Friday, it was viewed by 433,629 people. As of this hour, the column has been viewed more than 1.25 million times.

One of the folks who read it was nationally syndicated columnist Cal Thomas. He then quoted it in his latest column on why he, too, switched from being #NeverTrump to voting for the Trump-Pence ticket. It’s an excellent article and I hope you’ll take a moment read it and share it with others.

I don’t share this update with you to pat myself on the back in anyway. Quite the contrary, it was enormously difficult for me to change my position, and then go public with that change. But I think the enormous interest my article received was evidence, perhaps, that there were an enormous number of Americans similarly struggling with competing convictions and wrestling with how to reconcile them in such dark and difficult times.

To everyone who read the article, and commented, and shared it with others, let me just say thanks. I hope it was helpful and thought-provoking, regardless of how you ended up voting.


[This column is based on my personal beliefs and opinions. I share them in my personal capacity as an American citizen and an author. They do not reflect the views of The Joshua Fund, which is a non-profit organization and takes no political or legislative positions.]



After much prayer and soul-searching, I have reluctantly decided to vote for the Trump-Pence ticket. Here’s why.


This is not easy for me. I did not get to this point lightly. Rather, it has been a matter of intense examination of the candidates and party platforms, studying the Scriptures (particularly I Samuel 8-12; see below), and listening to many thoughtful voices in the debate.

Anyone who has been tracking my writing during the course of this campaign knows how deeply concerned I am about Mr. Trump — his lack of experience, flip-flopping on issues, and the unkind and at times even vulgar or vitriolic language he uses against his critics. I had hoped he would be defeated in the primaries. Or challenged by a plausible third party candidate. Or would drop out after the release of the deeply offensive video of him speaking with Billy Bush.

But this is where we are. Now, it is truly is a binary choice between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. There’s no way around it, and the moment of decision has arrived.

True, I had previously stated that I could “never” vote for Mr. Trump. So I readily concede this is a reversal. I have no doubt I will disappoint some for changing my position. But this is where I am, and I want to explain how I got here.

The heart of the matter is this: I have been going through what many Evangelicals are going through – an internal battle between competing convictions.

I could never support Hillary. Indeed, much of my professional life has been fighting the Clintons, dating back to when I worked for Bill Bennett and Jack Kemp at Empower America, and for Rush Limbaugh as director of research. So the question for me has been this: should I vote for Trump, a third party candidate, write-in a candidate, or not vote at all? For many of my friends, this hasn’t been a difficult choice. For me it’s been difficult to determine which of my deeply held convictions should be elevated as paramount, even when the others I hold so dearly are being violated.

To be sure, my vote is not more important than anyone else’s. I know many Americans are struggling the same way I am. Indeed, in writing this I’m not even trying to persuade you to agree with me. I have friends whose deepest convictions tell them they simply cannot vote for Mr. Trump, that they will trust the sovereignty of God and live with the consequences. I respect them. I don’t question their motives. I know exactly where they’re coming from.

But for those who are interested, here are ten reasons why I have decided to vote for the Trump-Pence ticket:

  1. The most important is this: Hillary Clinton must never be elected President under any circumstances. She must be stopped. As I have written, she would be an absolute catastrophe for America. Should she be elected and the Democratic Platform enacted, this dynamic would accelerate the country towards divine judgment and implosion.
  2. Hillary and her advisors may have committed federal crimes. The decision by the Director of the FBI to reopen the criminal investigation put into sharp relief for me  the gravity of the situation facing us.
  3. Electing Hillary could very well lead to a constitutional crisis that could paralyze the federal government and make us vulnerable. These were points made this week by Doug Schoen, a senior Democrat pollster and strategist who once worked for President Bill Clinton. Schoen announced that he – a long-time Hillary supporter – could no longer in good conscience vote for her. This helped persuade me that I could no longer in good conscience avoid casting a vote to stop her.
  4. Aside from criminality, Hillary is the most corrupt and flawed candidate ever to run on a major party ticket for President. Americans are exhausted by the culture of corruption and scandal that perennially surrounds the Clintons. Four more years would distract us from tackling the serious challenges facing the American people.
  5. Hillary Clinton is the poster child for “politics as usual” at a time when we need change.
  6. Yes, as I stated above, I have deep reservations about Mr. Trump. I have not sugar-coated these concerns. Rather, I have written and spoken about them throughout the campaign. In January I wrote 39 reasons why a Trump presidency would be a catastrophe (see here and here). I concede this could still turn out to be true. But it also should be noted that in the ten months since I wrote those columns, an excellent Republican Platform was drafted and approved. Also, Mr. Trump has made a series of very specific and attractive commitments. He has promised:
    1. To pursue pro-life policies at the federal level
    2. To appoint Supreme Court Justices in the model of Antonin Scalia (and has issued a specific – and impressive – list of names from which he promises to draw to make his appointments to the Court
    3. To defund Planned Parenthood
    4. To rebuild the American military
    5. To protect America’s borders
    6. To strengthen America’s alliances with Israel and our Sunni Arab partners
    7. To repeal and replace Obamacare
    8. To cut taxes, reform the tax code, revitalize American manufacturing, create jobs for Blue Collar Americans, and expand economic freedom and opportunity for all Americans
  7. Do I have concerns as to whether Mr. Trump will keep all of these promises? Yes. But I have come to believe it is worth electing him in the hopes that he will keep his word. I am certain Hillary will aggressively pursue an agenda that goes against everything I believe.
  8. I believe Governor Mike Pence would make a superb Vice President.
    1. Lynn and I know Mike and Karen and have the highest respect for them. In our personal time with them, we have been deeply encouraged by their humility and character.
    2. Mike and Karen are devout Evangelical Christians.
    3. Mike is a principled conservative and is deeply knowledgeable and experienced in economic, social and foreign policy matters.
    4. Karen is a great friend, soulmate and counselor to her husband.
    5. More recently, we spent time with them in Jerusalem when the Governor led a trade delegation to Israel. They love Israel deeply. They love the Jewish people. Mike gets the seriousness of the threats posed by Radical and Apocalyptic Islam and is serious about countering them. He has deep respect for our Sunni Arab allies and understands the importance of working together with all our allies in the Middle East to counter Iran and ISIS.
    6. Mr. Trump was wise to choose Gov. Pence to serve as Vice President and deserves credit for the choice. If this is a signal of the type of leaders he will appoint in office, this would be a good thing.
  9. Hopefully, Mr. Trump would also appoint solid, experienced conservatives to key positions throughout the Cabinet and Executive Branch. I know for certain Mrs. Clinton would appoint hardcore liberals if she is elected.
  10. Finally, I have been studying I Samuel chapters 8 through 12 as I’ve been wrestling with the question, “Can I vote for a candidate for whom I have serious reservations?” In this fascinating passage, the Hebrew judge and prophet Samuel is grieved by the direction ancient Israel is going. He is grieved by Israel’s rebellion against the Lord. They want an earthly king, someone tall and strong and decisive — rather than the Lord — to govern them, lead them, protect them and solve their problems. Samuel goes to the Lord with great anguish to protest, but the Lord tells him three times to “listen to the voice of the people.” The Lord even directs Samuel to publicly anoint and bless a seriously flawed and woefully inexperienced man named Saul to be the king. The Lord does this even though He knows that Saul will fail the people and need to be replaced. But the Lord gives Samuel one further directive: Make sure the people understand what they are doing, and how urgently they need to turn back to the Lord – not to a man – to see their nation blessed and saved. “Now then, listen to their voice,” said the Lord. “However, you shall [also] solemnly warn them.” Did God tell Samuel to support a flawed man for the highest position of leadership in the nation even though it went directly against Samuel’s conscience? Yes, He did. But Samuel was never to stop calling the nation back to the Lord until the day he died. Now I am not Samuel, and Mr. Trump is not Saul. The details are different. But the principle is intriguing, and it has been helpful to me.

Today, I live in Israel and am a dual U.S.-Israeli citizen. But I was born and raised in the United States. I am an American citizen and profoundly grateful for this birthright. Heroic men and women have laid down their lives to give me the right to vote, and I am grateful. I can’t say I am happy with the choices I have, but I am finally at peace about what I should do.

To be clear, I am not endorsing Mr. Trump. I am simply saying I am going to vote for him (by absentee ballot) because Hillary must be stopped.

In the meantime, I will continue to pray faithfully and earnestly for the Trump, Pence, Clinton and Kaine families and for their teams. I will pray the Lord has mercy on them, and mercy on each and every American.

Finally, I will also keep meditating on a sobering passage of Scripture at this critical moment — 1 Samuel 12:22-25 – and encourage other believers to do the same:

“For the Lord will not abandon His people on account of His great name, because the Lord has been pleased to make you a people for Himself,” said Samuel to his nation. “Moreover, as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by ceasing to pray for you; but I will instruct you in the good and right way. Only fear the Lord and serve Him in truth with all your heart; for consider what great things He has done for you. But if you still do wickedly, both you and your king will be swept away.”


[This column is based on my personal beliefs and opinions. I share them in my personal capacity as an American citizen and an author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of The Joshua Fund, which is a non-profit organization and takes no political or legislative positions.]




With the liberation of Mosul underway, Iraq wants to create a new province to protect Christians & other minorities. I wholeheartedly agree. Here’s the latest.


Finally, the battle to liberate Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, from the bloodthirsty clutches of the Islamic State is underway.

With Iraqi Christians, Yazidis and other minorities suffering nothing short of genocide, the Iraqi military is currently engaged in a serious, systematic, albeit long-overdue campaign to crush ISIS and restore safety and stability to northern Iraq once and for all. Baghdad is working with a coalition that includes Iraqi Kurdish paramilitary forces known as the Peshmerga, backed up by U.S. intelligence, air support, special forces and tactical advisors.

This is good news, and I’m encouraged by early reports of progress, as this is a strategy to defeat ISIS that I’ve been advocating for some time (see here, here, and here).

The big question, as I see it, is not whether this coalition will ultimately be successful in liberating northern Iraq from ISIS (I believe they will be), but what happens the day after ISIS is gone. How will order be restored? How will the Christian community begin to rebuild their lives? And how will Baghdad help, rather than harm?

To this end, I wholeheartedly support an initiative by senior Iraqi government leaders to create a new province in northern Iraq — including the Nineveh Plain — that would specifically serve as a safe haven for Iraqi Christians, Yazidis and other minorities.

There once were some 1.5 million Christians living in Iraq. Today, after so many years of war and terrorism and now a systematic effort by ISIS to annihilate the Christian community, there are today fewer than 350,000 professed followers of Jesus Christ in the country that was the birthplace of Abraham and Sarah and the home of many Biblical prophets, from Daniel and Ezekiel to Jonah and Nahum, to name just a few.

To their credit, a number of current Iraqi leaders are being clear that they don’t want their Christian community to have to flee to Europe or America to find protection from ISIS. They don’t want ISIS to be successful in their declared mission to “break the cross” and annihilate Christ-followers in Iraq. What’s more, some of them have come to recognize that the only way to build a stable, healthy, lasting republic is to help Christians there not only survive but thrive. Among other things, that means giving Iraqi Christians a real stake in governing themselves.

The creation of a new province in northern Iraq has been a topic of discussion for several years within the upper echelons in Baghdad. With the liberation of northern Iraq finally underway, the discussion is now picking up tempo, as is international support for the idea.

Last month when I was in the States, I had a very encouraging phone conversation with Congressman Jeff Fortenberry who has spent a great deal of time examining the issue. He recently introduced a bipartisan resolution towards this end and is urging both Congress and whomever is elected the next President of the United States to support a new Iraqi province to protect the Christians.

Fortenberry has impressive street cred on the issue. Earlier this year, the Nebraska Republican led the effort to persuade Members of Congress to officially define the ISIS slaughter of Christians as genocide. In March, the House passed Fortenberry’s resolution by a unanimous vote of 383-0. Two days later, the Obama administration finally agreed to formally define the actions of ISIS as genocide.

Working closely with Fortenberry and his colleagues on these matters is Robert Nicholson, an Evangelical Christian and public policy specialist based in Manhattan. Nicholson has written and spoken extensively on the subject of protecting and strengthening persecuted Christians in the Middle East. After talking with him at some length, and reading a good deal of his work, I believe Nicholson is making a principled and effective moral and strategic case for the U.S. fully backing the creation of such a new province. I especially commend his most recent article, “The Strategic Case For A Safe Haven In Northern Iraq,” to your attention.

“This province would not be an externally created construct,” Nicholson wrote with several colleagues earlier this year. “It would be a political recognition of the province’s underlying ethnic and cultural makeup, building on what has already been taking place. Indeed, on January 21, 2014, Iraq’s Council of Ministers ‘agreed, in principle, to turn the districts of Tuz Khurmato, Fallujah, and the Nineveh Plains into provinces,’ pursuant to Articles 61 and 80 of the Iraqi Constitution. What remains is for the United States, its allies in the coalition against ISIS, and regional partners to support the Iraqis as they begin a transition toward greater federalism and greater protection for the country’s most vulnerable communities.”

I  agree, and I’m committed to doing everything I can to encourage more support in the House for Rep. Fortenberry’s resolution, and to create a Senate version, too.

Four times in recent years, I’ve had the opportunity to visit, preach and teach in northern Iraq. I’ve traveled twice across the Nineveh Plain, and had the honor of meeting with persecuted Christians there. Indeed, it has become a great passion of mine to find ways to support and encourage and even fund the pastors and Christian leaders of Iraq. I don’t believe the creation of a new province and thus a safe haven will solve all their problems. But I do believe it’s vital that Western Christians stand with our brothers and sisters, especially as they face genocide. We should do everything we can to help them recover from the tyranny of ISIS, and to help the Iraqi Church be a witness and blessing to their Muslim and Yazidi neighbors who have suffered so greatly under ISIS, as well.

[This column is based on my personal beliefs and opinions. I share them in my personal capacity as an American citizen and an author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of The Joshua Fund, which is a non-profit organization and takes no political or legislative positions.]



Stunning: A senior Democrat strategist says he is no longer supporting Hillary for president, warns of “constitutional crisis” if she is elected. Here’s the latest.


With just one week to go to Election Day in the U.S., here are three new and significant developments worth noting.

First, it is becoming increasingly clear that the FBI’s decision to re-open the criminal investigation of Hillary Clinton and her most senior advisors, including Huma Abedin, has grave implications for the country.

  • The Bureau has reportedly found some 650,000 emails on the computer of Abedin’s estranged husband, former Rep. Anthony Weiner.
  • All of those emails have to be carefully reviewed to see what they contain, including classified information. Then the evidence must be assessed to determine if criminal charges should be brought against anyone.
  • It could take several weeks, or even months, to complete the investigation. Even the mainstream media is beginning to see the significance of this. “FBI officials are unlikely to finish their review of new emails potentially related to the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private server before the November 8 election,” reports CNN.

Second, a senior Democrat strategist has just publicly announced that he cannot support Hillary for President and warns a “constitutional crisis” will ensue if she wins.

  • Doug Schoen is a highly respected pollster and political strategist for the Democrat Party. He has known the Clintons for more than two decades. He worked for President Bill Clinton. And until this week, he has supported Hillary for President.
  • But on Monday he warned of a “constitutional crisis” that will ensue if America elects a candidate who is actively under criminal investigation by the FBI.
  • “I am now convinced that we will be facing the very real possibility of a constitutional crisis with many dimensions and deleterious consequences should Secretary Clinton win the election,” Schoen wrote in a column for The Hill and for Foxnews.com. Donald Trump likes to say that the Clinton email scandal is worse than Watergate. I remember Watergate very well. What troubled me most, other than the crimes committed, was that the United States was paralyzed and unable to act. President Nixon and the government were rendered impotent, unable to govern and meet its responsibilities to the American public. I worry that the same thing could happen after a victory by Secretary Clinton and could carry on into her term of office.”
  • So with seven days to go, Schoen said he will not vote for Clinton — stunning — you couldn’t make this up if you tried.
  • To be clear, this is not a Republican operative, or a conservative strategist, or an Evangelical leader making the case of a grave threat to American democracy. This is a top Democrat who has been part of the Clinton-Obama team for decades, breaking with Hillary in the final week of the campaign. Unbelievable.
  • Here’s the transcript, and a link to the video.

Third, another long-time strategist and pollster for the Democrat Party says he now believes the news about the FBI’s criminal investigation will cause undecided voters to turn against Hillary in significant numbers and that “the dam is about to break.”

  • Patrick Caddell was President Jimmy Carter’s pollster.
  • He helped design the Carter re-election campaign in 1980. He helped Carter drive the narrative that Ronald Reagan was too conservative, too dangerous and unqualified to be president. He was certain Carter was going to win — his own polls had Carter up big — until the final weekend of that campaign.
  • At the last moment, “undecideds” broke decisively against Carter and for Reagan.
  • Caddell now says this campaign feels like 1980 — in large part because of the FBI investigation, he believes it’s possible that a significant percentage of the remaining 12-15% of undecided voters could break against Hillary in these final days.
  • We’ll see. There could be many more twists and turns in this final week — indeed, you’d almost have to expect them given the pattern of this race.
  • That said, it is noteworthy that long-time senior Democrats like Schoen and Caddell are warning that events could shift rapidly because of the deep distrust Americans have towards Mrs. Clinton and their exhaustion with the culture of corruption and seemingly never-ending seasons of scandal. Many Democrats — notably the Bernie Sanders supporters — are also exhausted by the Clintons and want change.

DOUG SCHOEN: As you know, I have been a supporter of Secretary Clinton… But given that this investigation is going to go on for many months after the election… But if the Secretary of State wins, we will have a president under criminal investigation, with Huma Abedin under criminal investigation, with the Secretary of State, the president-elect, should she win under investigation.

Harris, under these circumstances, I am actively reassessing my support. I’m not a Trump…. 

HARRIS FAULKNER, FOX NEWS: Whoa, whoa, wait a minute. You are not going to vote for Hillary Clinton?

SCHOEN: Harris, I’m deeply concerned that we’ll have a constitutional crisis if she’s elected.


SCHOEN: I want to learn more this week. See what we see. But as of today, I am not a supporter of the Secretary of State for the nation’s highest office.

FAULKNER: How long have you known the Clintons.

SCHOEN: I’ve known the Clintons since ’94.

I share these with you not as a political analyst trying to handicap the “horse race,” per se. There are plenty of pundits out there offering their educated and not-so-educated guesses on who will win the American presidential race, how and why. I’ve certainly done my share of political analysis in my career, but that’s not my purpose here.

Rather, I’m writing as one seeking to “analyze this present time,” not simply through the lens of geopolitics and economics but through what I call “the third lens,” the lens of the Scriptures. In the Hebrew Scriptures — notably in Ezekiel chapter 33 — the Lord speaks of the importance of being a “watchman on the wall.” If you see threats coming against a nation, you must be faithful to warn people of those threats and give them the opportunity and the time to take action.

In my fiction and non-fiction books, and in my columns and speeches, I have consistently sought to warn people of threats I see coming against the United States, against Israel, against our Arab allies in the Mideast and around the world, and against the Church. As the author of Implosion: Can America Recover From Her Economic & Spiritual Challenges In Time?, I’m deeply concerned about the direction America is headed, and never more so than right now. I believe America is not simply facing a season of decline but is in danger of outright collapse.

Thus, I have been praying earnestly that the Lord would give us a president who could help turn this ship of state around and get America heading in the right direction. We need much more than that, of course. We need a sweeping spiritual revival in the Church and another Great Awakening across the land. But a president who truly understood the enormous threats America faces from within and without, and who was serious about helping lead the nation back to the right track, could be of critical help.

Hillary Clinton is clearly not that candidate. As I have warned throughout this year, a Hillary presidency would be a catastrophe for America. The news of the last few days simply underscores this.

To be sure, I’ve written in detail about Donald Trump’s serious flaws and the risks a Trump presidency would pose. I haven’t sugar-coated the truth about either candidate. Rather, I’m trying to be honest in my analysis, even though many of my readers don’t want to hear it, so people understand the risks the nation faces from either candidate.

Today, I focused on Mrs. Clinton, because of these three significant new developments.

Last point: I will continue to pray faithfully for each of the candidates and their families and advisors. And I will continue to pray that the Lord will be merciful to America. The nation has many hard days ahead no matter who wins next week. Rather than be anxious or discouraged or angry, however, the Lord calls us to be “joyful in hope, patient in affliction, and faithful in prayer.” (Romans 12:12)

[This column is based on my personal beliefs and opinions. I share them in my personal capacity as an American citizen and an author. They do not reflect the views of The Joshua Fund, which is a non-profit organization and takes no political or legislative positions.]

BREAKING: FBI reopens criminal investigation of Hillary. This is a huge story — especially coming just days before the election. Here’s the latest.

UPDATED: For yet another week, the news of the American election cycle continues to go from bad to worse to nightmarish to surreal. With the future of the world’s greatest democracy — and world’s only superpower — at stake, it’s important to take a few minutes to see what is happening and consider why it matters.
  • The ugliest presidential campaign in U.S. history — a dispiriting battle between two of the most disliked and distrusted candidates in U.S. history — has just taken another bizarre twist.
  • FBI Director James Comey announced on Friday that he is reopening the criminal investigation of Hillary Clinton based on the discovery of “new device” containing new, previously unexamined, email evidence.
  • [UPDATE: Watergate investigative reporter Carl Bernstein: FBI Would Not Reopen Case Unless New Evidence Was “A Real Bombshell”]
  • Make no mistake: this is a huge story — especially coming just 11 days before the election.
  • It radically changes the narrative for undecided voters in swing states from focusing on the deep and serious flaws of Mr. Trump to focusing on the persistent pattern of corruption, and now the possibility of criminal behavior, of Hillary Clinton.
  • While it’s unclear whether these new developments will ultimately lead to an indictment, it does mean the criminal investigation of Hillary will continue for weeks, if not months, certainly well past Election Day.
  • At the very least, it shows that Comey and the Bureau felt they absolutely had to make these serious developments public, even at what could turn out to be the most damaging moment possible for the Clinton campaign.
  • I’ve said it before, and I will say it again. Hillary is without a doubt “the most corrupt and deeply flawed Democratic candidate that has emerged” in the history of our Republic.
  • I’ve offered dozens of reasons why “her election will be a disaster for the American family, American workers, Americans serving in the military, and for American national security.”
  • The news of the last 24 hours simply underscores these assessments.
  • Yet the news is jarring and dramatic because Comey announced last summer that he was not going to pursue a prosecution of Mrs. Clinton. That decision itself was downright bizarre given the fact that the Bureau’s own investigation found Hillary was “extremely careless” in handling classified information by having a private email server in her house and that Hillary and her staff destroyed more than 30,000 emails.
  • Comey told us at the time that “110 e-mails in 52 e-mail chains have been determined by the owning agency to contain classified information at the time they were sent or received. Eight of those chains contained information that was Top Secret at the time they were sent; 36 chains contained Secret information at the time; and eight contained Confidential information, which is the lowest level of classification.”
  • Given the seriousness of the evidence the FBI had uncovered, Comey’s decision not to prosecute any of this was seen by many Americans as evidence of a cover-up, and thus of corruption at the highest levels of the U.S. government. Numerous American citizens have been prosecuted for handling classified information in an improper manner — yet who has ever destroyed 30,000-plus pieces of evidence and avoided prosecution?
  • Have Comey and his team changed their mind? What evidence have they uncovered that caused them to make such a radical change of direction? How damning is it?
  • Oh how we could wish this was some all just some epic political thriller we were reading or watching on the silver screen. But this is cold, harsh reality, and immensely painful.
  • The world’s greatest democracy is stumbling badly.
  • The world’s only superpower looks increasingly weak, disoriented, unclear, unsure.
  • Tragically, America is not simply in a season of decline — as evidenced by the choices we have before us — but is heading for implosion.
  • American weakness is creating an opening for freedom’s enemies to advance.
  • What’s more, as painful as it is for me to say it, America is heading towards divine judgment — for many reasons, but perhaps above all for murdering 58 million babies since 1973.
  • While it grieves me to see where America is today, it does not surprise me.
  • Politics won’t save us now — only a Great Awakening provided by the Almighty God of the universe can save us now.
  • Will the Lord Jesus Christ grant us such a sweeping spiritual revival and renewal? I hope so, I pray so, but I don’t know.
  • So I keep forcing myself to look away from the news and from Twitter and social media and turn my eyes back to the Lord — to our great and glorious and soon-coming King. He is good, and He is sovereign, and no matter who is elected president my hope is not lost, because my hope is in the Messiah, the King of kings and the Lord of lords, and He has graciously granted me citizenship in His glorious kingdom. He will come and make all things new, and all things right. He will bring justice and righteousness and life everlasting, and I cannot wait.
  • My task right now, therefore, is not to fear or worry about what the future holds but to remain faithful to all that the Lord instructs me through the Scriptures. For example, as darkness falls, I am to remain “joyful in hope, patient in affliction and faithful in prayer,” as the Apostle Paul wrote to the believers in Rome.
  • I could never vote for Hillary under any circumstances, but I have promised to pray faithfully for her and her family. Indeed, regardless of how grieved I am by both nominees, I am 100% committed to genuinely and faithfully praying for both of them and their families. I will continue to pray that the Lord Jesus Christ shows them great mercy, that they will seek Him with all their heart, and that He will supernaturally change them and bear much good fruit in and through them.
  • As I noted in my October 9th column, the God of the Bible is a change agent. All through the Scriptures we see God saving, changing and redeeming broken, burdened, troubled lives, and it is breathtaking to behold. The Lord loves to change hearts and minds and mouths. He alone has the power to change lives, and I truly pray He will show His great mercy and love to the Clintons and the Trumps. Meanwhile, I am praying for those who can provide either family and either candidate sound, Biblical, spiritual counsel. Both families need true, faithful believers around them speaking the truth in love, as do we all.
  • Whoever wins the presidency and is given the task of leading America for the next four years, I will pray for faithfully and consistently. This is what the Apostle Paul commands of us, and thus, I hope you and your family and friends will also be faithful in praying for the next president and for all the Members of Congress and for the future of the Court.
“First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men, for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” (I Timothy 2:1-4)


[This column is based on my personal beliefs and opinions. I share them in my personal capacity as an American citizen and an author. They do not reflect the views of The Joshua Fund, which is a non-profit organization and takes no political or legislative positions.]

Where from here? 22 years ago, Jordan signed an historic peace treaty with Israel. Will other Arab countries follow? A few thoughts.



(Central Israel) — One of my regrets in life is that I never had the opportunity to meet Jordan’s King Hussein, truly one of the most courageous and compassionate Arab leaders of the 20th century.

Twenty-two years ago — on October 26, 1994 — Hussein made history by signing a peace treaty with the State of Israel. In so doing, Hussein became only the second Sunni Arab Muslim leader to do so.

The first, of course, was President Anwar al-Sadat of Egypt, another of the great Arab leaders of our age.

Which Arab state will be next? What Arab leader will follow the lead of Sadat and Hussein in making peace with the Jewish State? And when?

Admittedly, I’m not holding my breath. Nor should you. But as I’ve been writing about on this blog for some time, there are, in fact, signs of encouraging behind-the-scenes cooperation between Israel and the Sunni Arab world, including a number of intriguing public meetings between prominent Israeli and Saudi notables. Why? In part because a growing number of Arab leaders in the region now recognize that the true existential threat to them is not the presence of a sovereign Jewish State but rather Iran’s menacing nuclear program and the genocidal, apocalyptic ambitions of the Islamic State.

King Hussein knew full well that he was taking an enormous risk when he signed the historic peace accord with then-Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin during an elaborate ceremony that was overseen by President Bill Clinton, held on the Israeli-Jordanian border, attended by some 4,500 guests.

Hussein had grown up in the bubbling cauldron that is the modern Middle East. As a teenager, he was standing at the side of his grandfather, King Abdullah I, when Abdullah was brutally assassinated by a Palestinian radical just outside the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount in the summer of 1951. Over the next four decades, Hussein survived literally dozens of plots against his life, including the effort by Yasser Arafat and the PLO to overthrow him in 1970 (what became known as “Black September.”) Hussein also knew all too well how his friend, Sadat, was cruelly assassinated by Islamic jihadists in 1981, just two years after Egypt made peace with Israel.

Yet remarkably, twenty-two years ago, Hussein made the decision to proceed anyway, knowing all the history and all the threats and all the risks. He thus demonstrated his extraordinary wisdom and impressive drive to bring peace and prosperity and stability and opportunity to the people of Jordan.

Today, seventeen years after Hussein’s untimely death from cancer, the Israeli-Jordanian peace treaty still holds. Why? Much of the credit goes to the equally-extraordinary leadership of his son, King Abdullah II, who continues to follow in his father’s impressive footsteps, steadily seeking to improve the quality of life for all Jordanians, while navigating ever-turbulent regional storms.

Indeed, Abdullah II seems born for this challenging moment. He strikes me as uniquely qualified to protect his kingdom from all threats foreign and domestic, and build on his father’s legacy of moderation, tolerance and strength, as a I wrote earlier this spring when Lynn and I had the humbling honor of visiting with His Majesty in Amman.

Today, thank God, Israel and Jordan are working quietly but closely on security, intelligence, agricultural, economic and energy matters. They are also working closely with other Sunni Arab countries like Egypt, the Saudis and the Gulf emirates on vital security issues, most notably the fight against ISIS and the effort to protect the region from emboldened Iranian aggression.

What’s more, just last month Israel and Jordan signed a 15-year, $10 billion agreement in which Israel will provide natural gas it is drilling in the Mediterranean to the kingdom at low prices. Some Jordanians are protesting the agreement, but it really is a win-win for both sides. Jordan is the first country to whom Israel has agreed to export its natural gas, and the deal will help the Hashemite Kingdom “$600 million a year from the state’s energy bill.”

Of course, the pressures on Egypt and Jordan to distance themselves from Israel, even to abandon their treaties, are enormous. Both Radical Islamists and Apocalyptic Islamists see Jordanian and Egyptian leaders as apostates, betrayers of the cause, and seek to bring them down as rapidly and violently as possible. Such are some of the themes in my most recent series of novels, The Third Target and The First Hostage. Such issues also play a significant element in my forthcoming thriller, Without Warning (though I’m not ready to go into any detail yet).

Israelis, Jordanians and Egyptians have been enormously blessed by these peace treaties. Without continuous war amongst us, we have all seen our economies grow and our children pursue their education and their dreams in a far better way than they could have. True, a fair and compassionate agreement must still be forged between Israelis and Palestinians — and for this I pray every day. I hope you do, too.

But on this day when we remember the signing of the Israeli-Jordanian peace treaty (and its predecessor between Israel and Egypt), let us be likewise committed to standing with Jordan’s King Abdullah II and Egypt’s President el-Sisi. Let us be praying for them and their governments and their people. Let us be praying for peace, stability, and economic growth for Jordan and Egypt.

For if the jihadists succeed and Jordan and Egypt become destabilized, this would have catastrophic consequences for the region and the world. Such is the nightmare scenario I pray we only read about in novels, not see play out in real life.

[PHOTO: Front page of the New York Times reporting on the signing of the Israeli-Jordanian peace treaty in 1994; and a photo of Jordan’s King Hussein sharing a smoke with Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin.]



HUGE LOSS FOR THE ISLAMIC STATE: Dabiq seized by coalition forces. What happened to all the Islamic prophecies of an apocalyptic, End of Days battle in which the West would be destroyed?


The false prophecies of ISIS have fallen flat.

As the battle to liberate the city of Mosul from the control of the Islamic State in Iraq was launched this week, coalition forces quietly liberated another key site from ISIS control in Syria — the Syrian town of Dabiq.

Few Westerners seemed to notice, but this was actually huge strategic and psychological loss for the Islamic State. Why? Because ISIS leaders have long proclaimed that Dabiq would be the site of an apocalyptic battle in the End of Days. Indeed, control of Dabiq is central to the eschatology of the Islamic State.

“The Islamic State’s magazine is called, Dabiq,” I noted on Fox News in January. “Most people have no idea what that means. [Dabiq] is 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. The [leaders of ISIS] are 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.”

[To read other articles I’ve written about the significance of Dabiq and why the next President and his or her advisors need to understand the eschatology behind it, please click here, here, and here.]

Yet as of this week, Dabiq has been seized from ISIS in what has to be one of the most anti-climatic battle of the ages. Now, ISIS leaders are furiously spinning that none of this really matters, that Dabiq was never really so important to them.

“It is without doubt that Dabiq was crucial to the Islamic State’s propaganda apparatus,” noted an analysis this week in the Washington Post. “Data from Google shows how its attacks in the West fueled the apocalyptic rhetoric, and the reverse. Search interest in the term ‘Dabiq’ first spiked in December 2014 when the magazine under the same title published strong criticism of al-Qaeda, referring to the apocalyptic battle that was assumed to be ahead. From that point onward, search interest always spiked when terrorist attacks in Western countries occurred: the Charlie Hebdo shooting, the Copenhagen attacks, and finally the devastating Paris attacks with more than 130 victims.'”

“It’s easy to conclude that ISIS’ leaders cited the prophesy cynically. They played it up when it was to their advantage and downplayed it when it was not,” wrote William McCants, author of “The ISIS Apocalypse” which was published last year. “But another theory I offered is that ISIS, like other apocalyptic groups, changes its understanding of prophecy’s fulfillment based on circumstances.”

“Other researchers have voiced similar doubts whether Dabiq’s loss implies the end of its prophecy being used in ISIS propaganda,” noted the Post. “Charlie Winter, a senior research fellow at London’s Center for the Study of Radicalization and Political Violence, wrote that the apocalypse narrative had stalled, but was ‘not undermined.'”

Here’s coverage on how the (less-than-apocalyptic) battle for Dabiq played out:

COMING SOON: In the days ahead, I’ll post more coverage and analysis of the battle for Mosul.



Have you heard that Israeli leaders are urging Jews to read through the entire Bible, verse by verse, chapter by chapter? Amazing, but true. Here’s the latest.

netanyahu-biblestudyoct2016rivlin-launching929initiative(Central Israel) — You probably haven’t heard this in the mainstream media, but Israel’s most senior leaders are urging the Jewish people to read through the Bible, the whole Bible, verse by verse, chapter by chapter.

Can you imagine President Obama or any other U.S. leader calling on American people to read through the Bible? Neither can I.

Given the general trend here in Israel towards secularization, this is quite a surprising yet thoroughly encouraging development. I’m sure many of you are skeptical, but it really is true. Here’s the latest.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu kicked off the new school year here by encouraging children to rediscover the Word of God and Biblical roots of their Jewish heritage.

“First of all, the study of the Bible,” he said in August. “Knowledge is a critical word. We want to give it [knowledge of the Scriptures] to every child in Israel, Jews and non-Jews as one, religious and secular. This is the basis of the new world, and the basis of Israel as a strong nation in the world.”

Last week, the prime minister and his wife, Sara, hosted another in a series of occasional Bible study groups at their official residence. They discussed — among other things — the Biblical connection Jews have to the Temple Mount, despite a recent U.N. vote denying Jews have any such connection.

The Netanyahus organized their first home Bible study group in December 2011, as I reported at the time. In so doing, they carried on a tradition first begun by David Ben Gurion and later by Menachem Begin but rarely repeated by other Israeli premiers. Their stated goal was to set an example for the nation and to “perpetuate a love of the Bible.” [See here and here for coverage of other Bible studies they have held.]

Meanwhile, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin and several government officials have launched something they call the “929 Initiative.”

This is a wonderful and worthy effort to encourage all Israelis — even the most secular and non-religious among us — to read one chapter of the Jewish Scriptures a day, every day, until they have read all 929 chapters.

Rivlin and his colleagues kicked off the $12 million initiative in December 2014. Since then, they have been encouraging Israelis to continue reading verse by verse, chapter by chapter through the full Hebrew Bible or “Tanakh” until everyone finishes together in the summer of 2018 for the 70th anniversary of the prophetic rebirth of the Jewish State.

There is a pretty impressive and sophisticated website dedicated to the project, with Israelis of all kinds, from a wide variety of backgrounds, writing articles on what they think about the Bible verses they are reading. There is also an app that helps Israelis remember what chapter they’re supposed to read each day and help them mark their progress.

Here are several article about the initiative. I commend them to your attention.

I especially wanted to bring this all to your attention as we celebrate Sukkot, or the Feast of Tabernacles (aka, “Feast of Booths”). Why? Because in the Torah, Moses commanded the people to read through all the Scriptures in their entirety every seven years. Sadly, this is a commandment many if not most of my fellow Jews have forgotten, or never were aware of in the first place.

10 Then Moses commanded them, saying, “At the end of every seven years, at the time of the year of remission of debts, at the Feast of Booths, 11 when all Israel comes to appear before the Lord your God at the place which He will choose, you shall read this law in front of all Israel in their hearing. 12 Assemble the people, the men and the women and children and [a]the alien who is in your [b]town, so that they may hear and learn and fear the Lord your God, and be careful to observe all the words of this law. (Deuteronomy 31:10-12)

Some of my favorite stories in the Bible are when King Josiah called the nation of Judah together to hear the Word of the Lord read to them in its entirety, and when Ezra and the priests read the entire Bible to the nation of Israel after their return to the Land from Babylonian and Persian captivity.

Several years ago, we organized an Epicenter conference with the theme, “The Power of The Word.” Several of the speakers taught on this largely forgotten history of Jewish leaders calling the nation back to the Scriptures — if you’re interested in watching the videos of those and other messages, please click here.

I’m grateful to Netanyahu and Rivlin and to the other Israeli leaders who are calling our people back to reading the Bible cover to cover. Will you join me in praying that more Jews (and Gentiles) heed their call? Thanks so much, and Chag Same’ach — happy holidays from Israel!



What is “Sukkot,” the Feast of Tabernacles, and why do Jews celebrate it?


Shalom from Israel and Chag Same’ach — happy holidays!

We have just begun the third of the Fall Feasts. The first was Rosh HaShana, the Jewish New Year. The second is Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. This one is known as Sukkot, or the Feast of Tabernacles. What is this feast all about? Why do we as Jews celebrate it? And how does it relate to the prophetic plan of the Lord, as laid out in the Scriptures?

These are  important questions, and to provide the answers I commend this excellent article to you. I hope you’ll read it and discuss it with family and friends, and share it with others on social media. Thanks, and may the Lord bless you as you study His Word and draw nearer to Him day by day.

““In that day I will raise up the tabernacle [sukkah] of David that is fallen and repair its breaches, and raise up its ruins and rebuild it as in the days of old, that they may possess the remnant of Edom and all the nations who are called by my name,” declares the Lord who does this.” Amos 9:11-12


After many delays, the battle to liberate Mosul from a hellish ISIS nightmare is about to begin. Here’s the latest.


UPDATE: The battle for Mosul began in the early morning hours of Monday, October 17th. Here’s one of the first reports from the BBC.

The good news: two years after the Islamic State swept through large swaths of north-western Syria, and seized control of upwards of one-third of Iraq, a coalition of U.S, Arab and Kurdish military forces are poised to launch a massive new battle to liberate the city of Mosul, Iraq’s second largest.

The bad news: how much time do you have?

  • For one thing, while ISIS is losing ground in Iraq, and even losing some ground in Syria, it’s ideology has spread to some three-dozen countries.
  • Second, ISIS is recruiting jihadists from well over 100 countries.
  • Third, ISIS operatives and loyalists are launching deadly terror attacks all over the world, including in North America and various NATO countries.
  • Four, the battle for Mosul — repeatedly promised yet repeatedly delayed over the past year — could cause ISIS to slaughter many more innocents.
  • Fifth, the battle for Mosul could also create a massive new refugee surge.

In the days ahead, I’ll keep you updated on this multi-national effort to retake Mosul, end the hellish ISIS-led genocide against Christians and Yazidis, and drive ISIS out of northern Iraq once and for all. I’ll also report on a fascinating Iraqi proposal to create a new province in northern Iraq where Christians and other minorities can be safe.

For now, please join me in praying for the people of Mosul. Please pray the Lord would liberate them from the ISIS nightmare they have been suffering for two years. Pray that the Lord would show grace and favor on the coalition preparing to attack ISIS. Please pray, too, for the various Christian ministries (including the organization we founded, The Joshua Fund) that is trying to minister to refugees in Iraq, strengthen the local persecuted Church there, and be a light in the darkness.

That said, here’s the latest news reports on preparations for the battle of Mosul:

“Thousands of troops are massing outside ISIS-held Mosul in preparation for a battle that could spell the end of the terror group in Iraq,” reports the UK Daily Mail. “The fight to reclaim the city is expected to begin next week in what will be the biggest Iraqi military operation since the US-led invasion in 2003.”

“A successful conquest would destroy ISIS’s last bastion of power in the country, and represent a serious blow to its legitimacy,” the British paper notes. “Some 30,000 Iraqi troops are expected to take part in the battle, with support from US special forces and western coalition warplanes.”

The BBC reports:

  • A planned military offensive to reclaim Mosul from so-called Islamic State (IS) could see up to a million Iraqis flee their homes.
  • The UN’s refugee agency has told the BBC how it and its partners are gearing up to deal with the expected humanitarian crisis by building camps to house those in need.
  • The much-delayed operation to drive IS from Iraq’s second-largest city is expected to begin this month, more than two years after the jihadists over-ran Mosul and proclaimed its caliphate.
  • In preparation, the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) and its partners are stepping up contingency plans, informed by a number of lessons learned from previous offensives, such as Falluja, says Bruno Geddo, a UN High Commissioner for Refugees in Iraq….
  • An estimated 3.3 million people — equivalent to almost 10% of the population of Iraq — have been uprooted by fighting since the start of 2014. Those currently fleeing Mosul and its surrounding areas join about half-a-million people who fled the city in June 2014.
  • There are no firm figures on how many people remain in Mosul, but there were more than two million when IS took the city more than two years ago.
  • Mr Geddo estimates the population could now be “anywhere between 1.2 and 1.5m people.”….

> Order the new paperback edition of The First Hostage today — click here.