Ted’s Remarks About Stuff
October thru December, 2017

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Dec. 31, 2017

A friend sent me a link to a cool 3½-minute video called “Interview With God.”  The music is nice, and many of the words are interesting.

However, what I like most about it are the awesome scenes and panoramas of this Creation.  They epitomize the incredibly innovative, ingenious, brilliant and limitless Mind of God.

Not only is this a huge fascination that I have with God now, but it will continue forevermore.  For all eternity, we always will be learning about Him, so we never will be bored for even one moment.

Here is a brief slideshow of some of my favorite views in the video.  If you click on any image below, a full-sized photo should appear.


25-second slideshow

Dec. 28, 2017

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 24,800 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.26% to 24,837.51, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.18% to 2,687.54, not a record high.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 24,837.51.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index: 2,687.54.

Dec. 26, 2017

I went to WalMart and got 215.95 oz. (13.50 lb.) of 50%-off Christmas clearance candy today.  I purchased more than I otherwise would have because I did not get half-priced Halloween candy on Nov. 1 this year. 

However, some of this candy is for a couple of friends who work today and were unable to get to WalMart early this morning.  That is the best time to go, since the candy aisle gets cleaned out of the clearance candy pretty fast.

13.50 pounds of Christmas candy

Dec. 25, 2017

15-second slideshow

Merry Christmas to those who celebrate this holiday.  I celebrate the birth of Jesus during the week of the Feast of Tabernacles or Sukkot.  See my Oct. 5 entry for more about that.

Regardless of when the virgin birth of Jesus was, He is the promised Messiah, the Son of God, and the Savior of those who acknowledge that they are sinners and ask God’s forgiveness for their transgressions, understanding that Jesus came and took the penalty that we were due.  In case you have an interest, you can see My Beliefs and Faith for more of what I believe.

I was a math major in college.  A friend sent me this, which is mathematically correct:

Merry X-Mas

Another friend knows that I liked to diagram sentences in high school.  She sent me this:

Ghost of Christmas past participle

Dec. 23, 2017

2017 Southern California Fire MapMassive wildfires have been burning in Southern California for weeks.  The fires have burned hundreds of thousands of acres and destroyed thousands of structures.

The Thomas Fire, continuing to burn in Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties, has become the largest wildfire in California state history.  So far, it has burned a whopping 243,400 acres.  This area is larger than all of New York City and almost the size of the sprawling city of Los Angeles.

This blaze, alone, has destroyed 1,063 structures and damaged 280 more.  The fire is about 75% contained; however, additional growth is likely before full containment is made sometime in early 2018.

California's Thomas wildfire
now largest in state history

This year, 2017, already is California's worst wildfire season on record.  As of Oct. 10, numerous wildfires had swept through the state.

Just during the month of October, more than 40 were killed and at least 10,000 homes lost when fast-moving fires tore through Sonoma and Napa Counties.  The community of Santa Rosa, in particular, was devastated.

Dec. 22, 2017

President Trump signed into law the lengthy tax reform bill called the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.  It was passed this week by the U.S. House and Senate.

This is a $1.5 trillion tax overhaul that, hopefully, will trigger tax cuts for most Americans next year.  It is the most extensive rewrite of the tax code since the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.

President Trump signs tax bill into law

Trump also signed a temporary spending bill that will keep the government running until Jan. 19 and provide money to upgrade the nation’s missile defenses.  With Congress reconvening on Jan. 8, they will have a whole lot of work to do to pass a long-term budget by the next deadline only 11 days later.

Dec. 21, 2017

The United Nations General Assembly voted overwhelmingly today to condemn President Trump’s declaration that the U.S. recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.  That proclamation was made on Dec. 6.

Ahead of the vote, President Trump warned that the U.S. will cut funding to U.N. countries who oppose his decision.  U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley said that Washington is “taking names” and is paying close attention to those who vote against the U.S.

In the vote, 128 member states voted to condemn Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, while 7 voted with the U.S. against the resolution.  There were 35 abstentions.

UN approves resolution condemning US
recognition of Jerusalem as Israeli capital

Dec. 20, 2017

Very early this morning, the U.S. Senate followed the vote in the House yesterday in passing the tax reform bill.  The vote was 51 for and 48 against, with no Democrats voting for the bill.  Republican John McCain, who is recovering from brain cancer treatment, was not present for the vote.

Senate OKs tax reform package,
sends bill back to House for final vote

Before noon, the House re-voted on the bill, due to a technicality in their vote yesterday.  Today’s vote was 224 for and 201 against.  Now the $1.5 trillion package has been sent to President Trump’s desk for his signature, maybe before Christmas.

Dec. 19, 2017

The U.S. House of Representatives voted to pass the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” today.  The vote was 227 for and 203 against, with 12 Republicans voting against.  Now the Senate will need to take a vote, probably later tonight or tomorrow.

However, there are three provisions in the House bill that violate Senate budget rules.  So following the Senate vote, if the bill passes, the House will have to have another vote before the legislation can be passed and sent to President Trump to sign.

House approves tax reform bill, as
Trump eyes major legislative win

Dec. 18, 2017

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 24,700 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.57% to 24,792.20, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.54% to 2,690.16, also a record high close.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 24,792.20.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,690.16.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) actually was above 24,800 for awhile today.  It reached 24,876.07, a record intraday high.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed at 24,792.20 today, which was a record high. But at one point it soared up to 24,876.07, a record intraday high

Dec. 17, 2017

Tonight is the 6th night of the 8-night Hanukkah holiday.  I attended a fun Hanukkah party put on by the local Jewish community.  As usual, all of the food was excellent.

Probably the most common food items were a variety of latkes (potato pancakes).  There also were various fruits, vegetables, turkey, desserts and other selections.  Since I like pretty much everything, I tried most of the items.  All of them were very tasty.

A table had numerous menorahs sitting on it, each with 6 candles.  All of the candles were lit, and some prayers were said.  This is done each of the nights of Hanukkah, with the number of candles increasing by one each night.

While we ate, a rabbi talked about Hanukkah and read some passages from a handout.  Next, names were drawn for five prizes.  Amazingly, my name was one of those called.

My prize was a copper necklace with several amber stones.  It looks valuable to me, but I’m not sure yet.  Anyway, it probably will be going to a lucky lady on Christmas.

I think some people hung around at the end to play the “spin the dreidel” game.  I had to leave, so I did not participate.  I’ve never played that before, though, so I would not have had a clue how to play.



45-second slideshow

Dec. 15, 2017

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 24,600 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.58% to 24,651.74, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.90% to 2,675.81, also a record high close.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 24,651.74.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,675.81.

Dec. 14, 2017

A very interesting servant of God, Harris Dvores, emailed me and said that he was preparing a lesson for his Sunday School class on the 3-in-1 nature of God.  In searching the internet for information, he ran across one of my commentaries: Who Is God?  He said that he will pass on some of my ideas, as well as my website address, to his class.

I checked out Harris’ website, which is here:


You can click on his house on the home page to enter his site.  Or else you can go to his site map page.

The amount of time that I spend on the web is limited, but I looked around his site for awhile.  I was impressed with how diversified and multifaceted it is.  I especially liked his focus on God in these sections:

sermons & skits  |  poems & prayers  |  songs

In another email, he linked me to one of his sermons.  In this audio recording (22 minutes 48 seconds in length), I found his explanation of faith in God, and its comparison to lightning, to be very insightful and interesting: Faith in Action.

Dec. 13, 2017

This the first full day of Hanukkah, which began last night after sunset.  There are Hanukkah Blessings to say for eight nights as menorah candles are lit.

15-second slideshow

The first day of Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, is the 25th day of the Hebraic month of Kislev.  Most likely, this is when Jesus, the Light of the world, was conceived by the Holy Spirit.  Nine months later He was born at the beginning of the Feast of Tabernacles = Sukkot, which is when God came to “tabernacle” with us in human form.

Since life begins at conception, then it would seem that Jesus was the Light who entered the world (John 3:19) on the Festival of Lights.  Speaking of the Messiah and Savior Jesus to come, God said this:

“It is too small a thing for you to be my servant to restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back those of Israel I have kept.  I will also make you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring my salvation to the ends of the earth.”  This is what the LORD says—the Redeemer and Holy One of Israel—to him who was despised and abhorred by the nation, to the servant of rulers: “Kings will see you and rise up, princes will see and bow down, because of the LORD, who is faithful, the Holy One of Israel, who has chosen you.” (Isaiah 49:6,7)

Jesus, who was Jewish, observed Hanukkah = the Feast of Dedication (John 10:22,23).  I feel that Jesus’ millennial Temple probably will be dedicated during Hanukkah after He returns.

In other news, although the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed at 24,585.43 today, which was a record high close, it was all the way above 24,600 for awhile.  It reached 24,666.02, a record intraday high.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed at 24,290.05 today, which was a record high. But at one point it soared up to 24,666.02, a record intraday high

The Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index closed at 2,662.85, which was not a record high.  However, it did reach 2,671.88 during the day, which was a record intraday high.

Dec. 12, 2017

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 24,400 and above 24,500 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.49% to 24,504.80, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.15% to 2,664.11, also a record high close.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 24,504.80.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,664.11.

In other news, the Alabama special election for the U.S. Senate seat was held today.  Neither candidate reached a majority of 50%.

Democrat Doug Jones defeated Republican Roy Moore 49.9% to 48.4%.  Jones' margin of victory was only 1.5%.

Alabama Senate Race: Doug Jones 49.9%, Roy Moore 48.4%

Doug Jones defeats Roy Moore in
contentious Alabama Senate election

Dec. 11, 2017

Islamic terrorist Akayed Ullah handcuffed on the ground after failed bombing attemptA would-be suicide bomber attempted an attack in Manhattan, NYC, at about 7:20 a.m. this morning.  He is being called the “Port Authority bomber.”

Akayed Ullah, 27, set off a pipe bomb inside New York’s Port Authority bus terminal, not far from Times Square.  His “low-tech device,” which he had strapped to himself, detonated prematurely in a subway passageway.  At least four other people suffered minor injuries, including ringing in the ears and headaches.

Ullah was the only person seriously injured in the pipe bomb explosion.  He suffered burns and wounds to his abdomen and hands.  His injuries are not life-threatening.

After being arrested, he told law enforcement officials that he blew up his explosive device because he noticed a holiday picture in the hallway and was inspired by ISIS-style Christmas threats.  He said that he had gotten the pipe from the electrical company where he worked and had assembled the bomb at his residence in Brooklyn.

This Islamic terrorist came to this country from Bangladesh in 2011, via extended-family chain migration, using an F43 family immigrant visa.  After that, he became a legal resident of the USA.  Now terrorism charges have been filed against him.

Suspect in Times Square Bombing
Leaves Trail of Mystery

Dec. 8, 2017

Following President’s declaration on Dec. 6 that Jerusalem will be recognized as the official capital of Israel, Palestinian leaders called for a “day of rage” today in Jerusalem.  Indeed, that did take place.

There also were massive protests in Islamic nations such as Jordan, Pakistan, Lebanon, Egypt, Malaysia, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Yemen, Afghanistan, Iran and Syria.  There also were protests in other nations as well.

Furthermore, calls are being made for a third intifada: an armed uprising and rebellion of Palestinians against Israelis.  If that happens, it could be that this violence will escalate out of control over the next weeks and months.

It concerns me that this could lead to Jesus’ prophecy in Luke 21:20-24.  If so, I feel the most likely time for those prophetic events to transpire would be the first week of April 2018 = Passover week.

In other news, in another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 24,300 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.49% to 24,329.16, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.55% to 2,651.50, also a record high close.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 24,329.16.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,651.50.

Dec. 7, 2017

Pearl Harbor National Rembrance Day
Pearl Harbor, Arizona Memorial

Today is the 76th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.  In President Roosevelt’s speech to Congress, he referred to it as “a date which will live in infamy,” as indeed it has.

This attack caused the United States to enter World War II.  Had that not happened, Adolf Hitler probably would have won the war, and the world would have been a completely different place.

A Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day observation, with President Trump and six World War II veterans, can be viewed here, along with Trump’s signing of the Proclamation for National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day 2017:

Dec. 6, 2017

As noted in my entry yesterday, there was an expectation that President Trump might make a significant announcement today, which he did.  He proclaimed that the U.S. officially would recognize Jerusalem as the eternal capital of Israel.  The text of his speech, from the White House, can be read here.

Trump stated that “today, we finally acknowledge the obvious: that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital.”  He added, “This is nothing more, or less, than a recognition of reality.”

Trump also indicated his intention to begin the process of moving the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.  This process probably will take a few months.

Following Trump’s speech, there was praise and agreement, as well as opposition and outrage.  Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called Trump’s policy shift “historic.”  He quickly pledged to continue giving Muslims and Christians access to their sacred places in Jerusalem’s Old City.

However, there was strong dissent from Palestinians, who asserted that these decisions by Trump would be “a kiss of death to the two-state solution.”  They also said that Trump is “declaring war in the Middle East.”  Many in other nations—including Turkey, China, Russia, Great Britain, Iran and even the Vatican—expressed manifest concerns over the matter.

Jerusalem latest: Hamas says Trump has opened
'the gates of hell' and calls for 'day of rage'

Although I adamantly agree that Jerusalem is the legitimate capital of Israel, the views expressed by President Trump today very well may ignite a flood of hostility, defiance and violence against Israel, perhaps even against the U.S.  We’ll see what happens over the following weeks and months.

Dec. 5, 2017

Ever since the implementation of the Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995, there have been plans to relocate the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.  The original plan was to do this no later than 1999.

However, the move was put off by U.S. presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama.  There were concernes that such a move might throw a wrench into the delicate Middle East process of peace talks.  Every six months, each president has waived the process of moving the embassy.

President Trump has made assurances that he intends to move the embassy to Jerusalem.  In June, though, he also waived this process for another six months.

Today, Trump informed the Palestinian Authority’s President Mahmoud Abbas that he is planning to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and begin the process of moving the embassy there.  Officially, either or both of these declarations could come as soon as tomorrow.

Experts fear that this will spark unrest and violence throughout the Arab world.  As such, security has been stepped up in various places, including Israel.

As Trump's Jerusalem decision looms, US
Marines, Israeli troops bracing for violence

Dec. 4, 2017

Although the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed at 24,290.05 today, which was a record high close, it was all the way above 24,500 for awhile.  It reached 24,534.80, a record intraday high.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed at 24,290.05 today, which was a record high. But at one point it soared up to 24,534.80, a record intraday high

The Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index closed at 2,639.44, which was not a record high.  However, it did reach 2,665.19 during the day, which was a record intraday high.

Dec. 2, 2017

The U.S. Senate narrowly passed tax reform legislation early this morning, just before 2:00 a.m. EST.  This is a little over two weeks after the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) on Nov. 16 and then sent the bill to the Senate for further review.

The vote today was 51 for and 49 against.  No Democrats voted for the TCJA, and only one Republican voted against it: Senator Bob Corker (R-TN).

In the Senate bill, the corporate tax rate would be lowered from 35% to 20%.  There would be cuts for individual tax rates, although they would expire after a decade.

The number of individual tax brackets would be kept the same in the Senate bill.  However, it changes what those brackets are.

The Senate bill also would repeal the individual mandate under Obamacare.  The House version does not change the individual mandate.

The bill next heads to conference, where House and Senate negotiators will work out the differences in their bills.  It also is possible that the House might pass the Senate bill the way it is.

Republicans Rejoice After Senate Passes
Tax Bill in Major Win for Trump, GOP

Nov. 30, 2017

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 24,000, above 24,100 and above 24,200 for the first time.  The Dow was up 1.39% to 24,272.35, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.82% to 2,647.58, also a record high close.  Wow.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 24,272.35.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index: 2,647.58.

Nov. 29, 2017

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 23,900 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.44% to 23,940.68, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was down 0.04% to 2,626.07.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 23,940.68   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index: 2,626.07

Nov. 28, 2017

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 23,600, above 23,700 and above 23,800 for the first time.  The Dow was up 1.09% to 23,836.71, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.98% to 2,627.04, also a record high close.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 23,836.71.   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index: 2,627.04.

The 255.93-point leap in the Dow today probably was due mainly to antipation that the Senate might pass a tax bill this week, just as the House of Representatives did on Nov. 16.  That could happen.  We’ll see.

In other news, North Korea has fired another intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), which was in the air for 53 minutes before landing in Japanese waters.  This is just over a week after the U.S. placed North Korea back on the list of state sponsors of terror on Nov. 20.

The distance that the ICBM soared out into space today was almost 2,800 miles.  This is more than 10 times the distance of the orbit of NASA’s International Space Station, which is 250 miles.

David Wright of the Union of Concerned Scientists has commented on the distance of the missile’s path.  He said that if the missile hadn’t been lofted into the sky but had flown on a standard trajectory, it would have been capable of traveling 13,000 kilometers, or 8,100 miles.

This seems to show that a North Korean missile is capable of hitting anywhere in the world, including all of the U.S. mainland.  That might not be possible, though, if the missile were fitted with a heavy nuclear warhead.

North Korea fires ICBM
into Japanese waters

As a result of North Korea’s missile test today, Hawaii officials announced the beginning of monthly siren tests, starting Dec. 1.  The tests will be conducted to prepare islanders for a possible nuclear missile attack by North Korea.

Hawaii to sound warning sirens amid
nuclear threats from North Korea

Nov. 26, 2017

Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters: Miss Universe 2017The Miss Universe 2017 pageant took place in Las Vegas, NV, tonight.  There were 92 contestants from around the world who participated.

Steve Harvey was the pageant’s host.  The final 3 contestants were Davina Bennett (Miss Jamaica), Laura Gonzalez (Miss Colombia) and Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters (Miss South Africa).

At the end, the judges chose Miss Jamaica as second runner-up, Miss Colombia as first runner-up and Miss South Africa as Miss Universe.  During the contest, the winner had described how she had survived a carjacking attack by fighting back against the attacker.

Miss Universe 2017 Pageant Recap:
Who Took Home the Crown?

Nov. 23, 2017

This is Thanksgiving Day in the USA.  Our first president, George Washington, issued a General Thanksgiving Proclamation.  Its focus is on the Almighty God, to whom we all should be thankful for both good and happy times, as well as bad and sad times.

15-second slideshow

In his instructions to the Thessalonians, the apostle Paul wrote the following:

Now we ask you, brothers, to respect those who work hard among you, who are over you in the Lord and who admonish you.  Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other.  And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone.  Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else.  Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.  Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt.  Test everything.  Hold on to the good.  Avoid every kind of evil.  May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through.  May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.  The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it. (1 Thessalonians 5:12-24)

On this special day, the prominent phrase that Paul wrote is, “give thanks in all circumstances.”  For many who are going through difficult and trying circumstances, this is not easy to do.  Spiritual maturity enables us to understand that we should give thanks even for the thorny and challenging things in life.

It is hard for us to understand why we should be thankful for the terrible things that happen to us, and to others close to us, along this journey of life.  We must realize, though, that we cannot understand the infinite Mind of God, nor can we comprehend His plans and purposes for our lives.  It is in obedience and in faith that we thank God for all things.

Today, let us remember that God is in charge and in control of all situations.  He allows us to go through hard times to strengthen us and to cause us to depend on Him—rather than on ourselves or other people—even more.  It is one of the greatest lessons we can learn before Jesus returns to rule and reign, when He will wipe away every tear from our eyes.

Nov. 21, 2017

Another loud boom was heard last night.  This time, it was heard in some suburbs of Denver, CO.  As in San Diego, CA, in Bridgewater, NJ, and in Centreville and Birmingham, AL, earlier this month, many possibilities have been suggested; but the actual cause is inconclusive.

In other news, although the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed at 23,590.83 today, which was a record high close, it was above 23,600 for awhile.  It reached 23,617.80, a record intraday high.

All four major stock indices were at record levels today: DJIA — 23,590.83; NASDAQ Composite — 6,862.48; S&P 500 — 2,599.03; Russell 2000 — 1,518.89

The Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index closed at 2,599.03, which also was a record high.  It even briefly passed 2,600 for the first time, with an intraday high of 2,601.19.

In fact, all four major stock indices not only were up but hit all-time highs today:

All four major stock indices were at record levels today: DJIA — 23,590.83; NASDAQ Composite — 6,862.48; S&P 500 — 2,599.03; Russell 2000 — 1,518.89

Nov. 20, 2017

President Trump has placed North Korea back on the list of state sponsors of terror.  The purpose of this is to put pressure on the Kim Jung Un regime to cease further development of its nuclear program and to stop its aggressive acts in the region.

During a Cabinet meeting at the White House today, Trump said, “In addition to threatening the world by nuclear devastation, North Korea has repeatedly supported acts of international terrorism, including assassinations on foreign soil.  This designation will impose further sanctions and penalties on North Korea and related persons and supports our maximum pressure campaign to isolate the murderous regime.”

Presently on the State Department’s list of state sponsors of terrorism are Iran, Sudan and Syria.  North Korea was removed from the list in 2008, but now it will be re-added.

Trump designates North Korea
as state sponsor of terror

In other news, the Georgia Dome in Atlanta opened 25 years ago.  In 1992, at 29 stories high and containing 71,250-seats, it was the largest covered stadium in the world.  Construction of the stadium cost $214 million.

It has been the home stadium for the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football League (NFL) and the Georgia State University Panthers football team.  Super Bowl XXVIII in 1994 and Super Bowl XXXIV in 2000 were played there.  It also hosted basketball games and artistic gymnastics in the 1996 Olympics, as well as three Final Four NCAA basketball tournaments, among numerous other events.

This morning, at 7:32 a.m. local time, the Georgia Dome was demolished.  About 4,800 pounds of explosives caused it to implode in 12-15 seconds.  Now it is a big pile of concrete and steel that will take about three months to clean up.

The $1.6 billion Mercedes-Benz Stadium, just over 80 feet away, replaced the Georgia Dome this year in August.  A 50-foot tall industrial-strength curtain was placed between the two structures to protect the new stadium from any flying debris caused by the demolition of the dome.

Georgia Dome imploded with nearly
5,000 pounds of explosives

Nov. 17, 2017

On the 700 Club, one segment of the program featured Jonathan Bernis, CEO of Jewish Voice Ministries.  His new book is Unlocking the Prophetic Mysteries of Israel.

In the eyes of God, Israel is the most important nation on earth.  It is where biblical prophecies regarding the end of the age will unfold.  Basically, Israel is God’s “time clock” for prophetic fulfillment.

Bernis points out that with all the things happening in the world, a lot of people are wondering, “What’s going on here?” and “Where is this headed?”  Indeed, things seem to be “spiraling out of control.”

Throughout the centuries, Israel and the Jewish people have been singled out as targets to be destroyed.  The main reason for this is that Israel is the center of a redemptive plan, by God, that Satan does not want to allow to happen.  So he is attempting to destroy both the plan of God and the people of God.

Bernis was asked if he sees any prophetic significance to the periods of 50 years and 70 years, pertaining to Israel.  He points out that 2017 is the 50th year since the restoration of Jerusalem back to the Jewish people in 1967.  Interestingly, we are in the year when the sign in the sky: September 23, 2017 has taken place.

Furthermore, in 2018 will be the 70th anniversary of the restoration of the State of Israel.  Bernis feels that something prophetic will happen next year, although he does not know exactly what that might be.

I feel that if certain anticipated prophetic events happen in Israel next year, they probably will begin during Passover week, which will be the first week of April in 2018.  At that time, if these warnngs given by Jesus to those living in and around Jerusalem take place, I will feel very strongly that the time of Great Tribulation has begun:

When you see Jerusalem being surrounded by armies, you will know that its desolation is near.  Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains, let those in the city get out, and let those in the country not enter the city. (Luke 21:20,21)

When asked if he felt that Israel would be living at peace with its neighbors soon, Bernis said he does not think there is a peace plan, orchestrated by man, that can work.  There is a peace plan, but it will be enacted only by the Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6), Jesus, after He returns.  Here is a video of this 9-minute interview:

Also today, after nearly three years of construction, the Museum of the Bible has opened in Washington, DC, a few blocks away from the U.S. Capitol.  It is the first museum in the U.S. dedicated solely to God’s Holy Word.

The museum is 8 stories high and encompasses 430,000 square feet of galaries and exhibits.  An interesting behind-the-scenes look at the museum can be seen in the final 12½-minute segment of this video, beginning at the 9:55 point:

Nov. 16, 2017

After months of deliberation and modifications, the U.S. House of Representatives has passed a tax reform bill.  It is called the “Tax Cut and Jobs Act.”  The House vote was 227 for and 205 against, with 13 Republicans voting against.

The next step is for the Senate to approve its version of tax reform.  If this happens, the House and Senate will need to go through a reconciliation process to unify the two bills.  This may be difficult, since the Senate’s version may include a repeal of Obamacare’s individual mandate.

The House GOP Just Approved
Its Big Tax Reform Bill

In other news, the annual Leonid Meteor Shower is happening this week.  The best chance of seeing the most meteors is tonight and tomorrow night.  There is almost a new moon, so the moon’s brightness will not be a factor in viewing the meteors.  This short video provides a good description:

Nov. 15, 2017

A day after a loud boom was heard and shaking was felt by many residents in and around Centreville and Birmingham, AL, a clear explanation for the event has not been determined.  The boom, followed immediately by shaking, occurred at a reported time ranging from 1:39 to 1:45 p.m. CST (or 2:39 to 2:45 p.m. EST).

It is being referred to as the “Bama Boom.”  Various causes have been suggested; yet nothing has been confirmed.

One suggestion is that a meteor from the Leonid Meteor Shower, at maximum intensity later this week, may have exploded in the atmosphere, causing the boom and the shaking.

However, NASA says that the sound was not caused by a Leonid meteor.  A NASA spokesman, Bill Cooke, said that these meteors are small and do not travel low enough in the atmosphere to produce sounds loud enough to be heard on the ground.

NASA says origin of large boom
over Alabama is a mystery

Loud 'boom' heard
across parts of Alabama

I was just in Alabama last week.  I wish I were still there and maybe could have heard the boom and felt the shaking.  At least a couple of my cousins near Birmingham did.

This comes less than two weeks after a loud boom was heard and shaking was felt in San Diego.  See my Nov. 3 entry.  Weird.

Nov. 14, 2017

I receive occasional emails from Valerie Moody.  I typically unsubscribe from most email lists, but I remain on Valerie’s because I like her information and thoughts.  Also, I do not have the time to read through emails that are lengthy and rambling, which hers are not.

The subject of today’s email is “Tefillah or Begging?”  Tefillah is the Hebrew for Jewish prayer.  Just a couple of days ago, a friend and I were discussing prayer and agreeing that most people tend to pray mainly in time of difficulty, trouble or danger.

Valerie agrees that most people tend to pray only in a crisis.  However, she feels that God is more likely to answer our prayers if we come to Him in humility and perform a self-evaluation before prayer.  I agree.

Tefillah or Begging?

Nov. 11, 2017

To all the vets out there:  Thank you for your service, your sacrifice, and your faithfulness.  Many of you have paid an extremely high price for my freedom, and I appreciate that.

15-second slideshow

If you are an American, remember Veterans Day.  Fly your flag if you have one, and thank a veteran.

Nov. 8, 2017

Whenever I’m in Alabama, my cousins like to take me to eat at Golden Corral.  I rarely eat at buffets, but I really like the variety and taste of the food at this one.  I ate so much that I’m sure I won’t eat again until tomorrow.

Whenever I see a chocolate fountain, I go kind of nuts, especially if there are strawberries to dip in it.  Today was no exception.


20-second slideshow

Nov. 7, 2017

I like Ted Cruz, U.S. Senator from Texas.  I wish that he were my U.S. Senator.  He was my choice to be the Republican presidential nominee in 2016.  I like his conservatism and his strong Christian beliefs and values.

I watched Senator Cruz give a brief interview on Fox News last night.  He had visited the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, TX, where 26 people were killed and 20 were injured in the horrific and gruesome shooting on Nov. 5.  He also spent time in the hospital visiting with victims and their families.

During his interview with Shannon Bream, Cruz described how the shooter walked down an aisle of the church shooting as many people as he could.  Cruz said, “I’ve spent a lot of years in law enforcement dealing with some terrible crimes.  This is unlike anything I’ve ever seen in my life.”

Cruz mentioned how he’d spoken with Stephen Willeford, who had wounded the shooter and caused him to flee the scene.  Otherwise, the murderer probably would have shot more people, including law enforcement officers.

Willeford told Cruz how he was “scared out of his mind.”  Cruz told him, “Sir, courage is not the absence of fear.  Courage is acting in the face of fear.”  Very true.

Senator Cruz also noted that a few years ago, he and Senator Grassley introduced legislation that could have prevented this shooter from legally obtaining a gun.  The bill (H.R. 1217) was the “Protecting Communities and Preserving the Second Amendment Act of 2013”; a copy of the text can be seen here.

Cruz added how, in 2010, 48,000 felons and fugitives lied on background check forms when they attempted to purchase guns.  Doing this is a felony.  However, only 44 of them were prosecuted.

Ted Cruz: Obama Administration
Failed To Prosecute For Lies On
Gun Background Check Forms

Nov. 6, 2017

Fruit Loops: red, orange, yellow, greenI really enjoy trekking around Mt. Laurel, AL, in the Fall of the year.  There are trees everywhere.  By the first week of November, a whole lot of the leaves have changed to red, orange and yellow, although there still is plenty of green around.  In some places, it’s kind of like walking through a bowl of Fruit Loops.

One of my favorite walks is along the nature trail leading to Spoonwood Lake, which is a great place to go out on a boat and fish, although I did neither of those activities.  I just like to walk around all over the place, take in the views and snap some photos.  It brings to mind how extremely creative God is.

When I was here a year ago, the water level in Spoonwood Lake was low, as the area had been through a severe drought for months.  However, there was a very rainy season this year, including Hurricane Nate on Oct. 8.  Even while I have been here, it has rained some; so now the lake is totally full.  I tried to pick days with mostly blue or blue-gray skies to shoot my photos.







105-second slideshow

Nov. 5, 2017

A mass shooting this morning at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs resulted in the deaths of at least 26 people.  At least 20 more who were attending the church were wounded.

The gunman fired a few shots at the church from outside and then entered the church at about 11:30 a.m., continuing to shoot.  The small town of less than 400 people is about 35 miles southeast of San Antonio.

The suspect, using a rifle, was Devin Patrick Kelley, 26.  He was confronted by a citizen with his own rifle who had seen Kelley firing at the church.

Kelley left the scene in his vehicle but crashed a few miles away.  He was found dead in his vehicle, either due to a self-inflicted wound or by being shot by the other man.

At least 26 killed in mass
shooting at Texas church

This shooting is being called the worst mass shooting in Texas history, as well as the worst mass shooting at a place of worship in U.S. history.  It comes five weeks after the horrendous mass shooting in Las Vegas, NV, on Oct. 1 and less than a week after the terrorist murders in NYC, NY, on Oct. 31.

Nov. 4, 2017

Most of the United States will “fall back” to Standard Time early tomorrow (Sunday) morning at 2:00 a.m.  I like the following clock because it is accurate to the second, plus it can be adjusted to any time zone: http://time.gov.  Except for Hawaii and Arizona, don’t forget to set your clocks back one hour before you go to bed tonight.

Some people prefer Standard Time because they typically get up early and like it when the sun rises an hour earlier.  Personally, I prefer Daylight Saving Time because I like the extra hour of sunlight at the end of the day.  I wish Daylight Saving Time could continue year-round.

Nov. 3, 2017

A day after a loud boom was heard and shaking was felt by many residents in and around San Diego, CA, a clear explanation for the event has not been determined.  According to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), there were no earthquakes anywhere near San Diego at that time.  The boom, followed immediately by shaking, occurred at 11:33 a.m. PDT (or 2:33 p.m. EDT).

Some causes have been suggested, such as sonic booms from military aircraft and meteoric activity.  But, as yet, nothing has been confirmed; it’s still a mystery.

San Diegans Startled By
Mysterious Boom, Shaking

The mystery boom and shaking in and around San Diego was preceded the night before by a loud boom and shaking of homes in Bridgewater and Branchburg, NJ.  Many reported that the boom, at about 8:30 p.m. EDT, sounded like a loud explosion.  There also were reports of a bright flash of light just preceding the boom, which can be seen and heard in a short home video (note the brief bright flash of light at the very beginning of that video, followed by the boom sound).

Mysterious boom after flash of light in Bridgewater, New Jersey;
Unexplained booms and shaking in San Diego, California

One possibility that some have considered is a supernatural one.  Conceivably, the devil (Satan) might be in the process of flinging many of his evil angels (aka “stars”) to various places on the earth (Revelation 12:4a).  More information about this can be found in the red dragon subsection of my season of Teshuvah section.

In case numerous supernatural beings are entering earth’s atmosphere, this could be causing loud booms, shaking, and sometimes bright flashes of light.  I am not saying, with certainty, that this is happening.  I’m just leaving open the possibility that it might be.

Nov. 2, 2017

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 23,500 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.35% to 23,516.26, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.02% to 2,579.85, not a record high.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 23,516.26   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index: 2,579.85

Nov. 1, 2017

The Houston Astros are the World Series champions after beating the Los Angeles Dodgers tonight in game 7.  Congratulations, Astros!  The game lasted 9 innings.

The final score was Astros 5, Dodgers 1.  Here are the scores for the final game tonight and the runs, hits and errors for all of the innings:

Astros 5, Dodgers 1 in the final game of the 2017 World Series

In the series, the Astros won 4 games and the Dodgers won 3 games.  That’s as close as it gets.  This was the first World Series win ever for the Astros.  Here are a few stats for the 7 games:

Tuesday, Oct. 24
Game 1 — Houston at Los Angeles
9 innings
3    1

Wednesday, Oct. 25
Game 2 — Houston at Los Angeles
11 innings
7    6

Friday, Oct. 27
Game 3 — Los Angeles at Houston
9 innings
5    3

Saturday, Oct. 28
Game 4 — Los Angeles at Houston
9 innings
6    2


Sunday, Oct. 29
Game 5 — Los Angeles at Houston
10 innings
13    12

Tuesday, Oct. 31
Game 6 — Houston at Los Angeles
9 innings
3    1

Wednesday, Nov. 1
Game 7 — Houston at Los Angeles
9 innings
5    1

Oct. 31, 2017

Happy Halloween, if that is your thing.  For me, it is just another day.  I do get a kick out of some of the Halloween decorations that I see, though.

Many of the homes in Mt. Laurel, AL, have yard and porch decorations each year.  When I’m here, I like to walk around the neighborhoods and snap photos of some of them.






1½-minute slideshow

NYC Officer Ryan Nash, who shot and subdued terrorist attacker Sayfullo SaipovIn other news, 8 innocent people were killed in lower Manhattan this afternoon when a radical Islamic terrorist in a rented truck plowed into them on a bike track.  It happened not far from the new World Trade Center building.

Six of the victims were visiting from foreign countries: 5 from Argentina and 1 from Belgium.  Several others were injured.  This is being called the deadliest terrorist attack in NYC since September 11, 2001.

The murderer was Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov, 29, originally from Uzbekistan.  He came to the United States in 2010 on the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program.

After the crash, Saipov exited his truck shouting “Allahu Akbar.”  Handwritten notes, along with a printout of the ISIS flag, were found showing Saipov’s loyalty to ISIS.  NYC Police Officer Ryan Nash, 28, wounded and subdued the terrorist with gunshots.

NYC’s Mayor Bill di Blasio called the truck ramming an “act of terror.”  NY’s Governor Andrew Cuomo described the terrorist suspect a “lone wolf.”

NYC terror attack leaves 8 dead, several
injured; suspect's notes pledged ISIS loyalty

Despite the terrorist attack, the annual NYC Village Halloween Parade took place tonight, as scheduled, from 7:00 to 10:00 p.m.  Large crowds of costumed people turned out to watch.

Oct. 29, 2017

This was a busy day for me.  I got up early and spent much of the morning making lasagnas.  I had not done this since Sep. 30, 2016.

I probably should have made only 2 lasagnas and put more ingredients in each baking pan.  Instead, I made 3 lasagnas and put less in each pan.  I would have purchased more extra vegetables at the store if I had remembered to check the sizes of my cousin’s pans beforehand.  In any case, the lasagna is very tasty.

18-second slideshow

Catch a Rising Star event at Samford University in BirminghamThis afternoon, I went with my cousins to Samford University in Birmingham.  In the Wright Center, we saw a Catch a Rising Star operatic presentation.

The singer was Alyssa Martin, and her pianist was Kevin Chance.  I’ve never been too much of an opera fan, but I did think their performance was excellent.  Afterwards, we drove around the university campus and I snapped a few photos.


30-second slideshow

Later in the afternoon, I walked around Mt. Laurel Square.  A Trunk or Treat event was put on by Double Oak Community Church, which is a couple of blocks away.

Numerous adults and kids were wearing Halloween costumess.  Cars and other vehicles had their trunks open, in which there was candy and other treats for the kids.  Since it was a church event, there were several signs displaying Bible verses.  Everyone seemed to be having a good time, including myself.






1½-minute slideshow

Oct. 27, 2017

Unknown object, A/2017 U1, passing through our solar systemRecently, an unknown object was discovered entering, and now leaving, our solar system.  It was seen first by the PanSTARRS1 telescope in Hawaii.  It has been named A/2017 U1.

The general consensus is that something like this never has been seen before.  It may have been an intersteller asteroid or comet that escaped from another solar system; but further investigation will be necessary to determine what it may have been, if that is even possible.

Whatever it was, it flashed past Earth at a distance of 15 million miles (24 million kilometers).  It was passing near the sun so quickly that its momentum and the sun’s gravity flung it back back out into deep space.  Chances are that it never will return.

This mystery object may be our first
visitor from another solar system

However, it is possible that this may foreshadow things prophesied in the book of Revelation.  I absolutely do believe that two celestial objects will strike the earth in the future, as God’s Second and Third Trumpet Judgments, causing cataclysmic damage:

The second angel sounded his trumpet, and something like a huge mountain, all ablaze, was thrown into the sea.  A third of the sea turned into blood, a third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed.  The third angel sounded his trumpet, and a great star, blazing like a torch, fell from the sky on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water—the name of the star is Wormwood.  A third of the waters turned bitter, and many people died from the waters that had become bitter. (Revelation 8:8-11)

In my opinion, these could be depictions of an asteroid and then a comet crashing into the earth.  They will cause mass destruction and devastation.  It could be that the A/2017 U1 object, since nothing like it ever has been seen before, is a warning by God of things yet to come.

Oct. 26, 2017

Today the U.S. House of Representatives approved the same budget passed by the Senate last week, with no changes made.  The House vote was close: 216 for and 212 against.

U.S. National Debt ClockThere were 20 Republicans who voted against the budget of almost $4 trillion.  Understandably, they are opposed to the additional deficits that will add to the gigantic national debt, now well over $20 trillion.

Many believe that this will lead to meaningful and effective tax reform.  Maybe.  I’ll believe it when I see it.

House paves way for Trump tax
reform plan by passing $4T budget

Oct. 25, 2017

I took two flights today to Birmingham, AL.  I scheduled both flights to be non-stop; changing planes even once in Houston, TX, was enough of a hassle.  So I had to leave early in the morning.

The flooding and destruction following the landfall of Hurricane Harvey on Aug. 25, and for days afterward, was immense and devastating.  I was curious to see if any of the damage was observable exactly 2 months later when flying into Houston.

The plane window next to me had smudges and streaks on it, so my photos aren’t too clear.  From my vantage point way up in the sky, I could not see any specific damage, although I’m sure there still is a great deal of it.  The landscape did look pretty green, though.


25-second slideshow

Oct. 24, 2017

The World Series in baseball begins tonight.  The Los Angeles Dodgers will play against the Houston Astros.  The first game will take place in L.A., beginning at 5:09 p.m. PDT = 8:09 p.m. EDT.

This will be the first post-season matchup in 40 years of two 100-win teams.  During the season, the Dodgers won 104 games (the best record in baseball), while the Astros won 101 games.

The last time the Dodgers were in the World Series was 1988.  The last time for the Astros was 2005.

The L.A. weather is hot, clear and dry today.  It is 105° and calm as I’m making this entry...my kind of weather.  So it will be pretty hot at the game tonight.  It will break the first-pitch record of game 1 of the 2001 World Series in Phoenix, when it was 94°.

I wish I could attend the game tonight.  I probably will watch it on Fox TV Network, while doing last-minute packing for a trip that begins tomorrow.

15-second slideshow

2017 World Series schedule

In other news, in another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 23,400 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.72% to 23,441.76, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.16% to 2,569.13, not a record high.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 23,441.76   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index: 2,569.13

Oct. 21, 2017

A rare public warning has been issued by the U.S. government.  Evidently, there is an increasing danger that hackers are posing a threat to energy and industrial companies.

Both the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) have reported that nuclear, energy, aviation, water and critical manufacturing industries have been targeted in attacks since May.

No specifics of the attacks have been given.  However, it would seem that these attacks are expected to become more aggressive.

U.S. warns public about attacks
on energy, industrial firms

Oct. 20, 2017

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 23,200 and above 23,300 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.71% to 23,328.63, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.51% to 2,575.21, also a record high close.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 23,328.63   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,575.21

The 165.59-point leap in the Dow today probably was due mainly to the Senate’s approval yesterday of a budget blueprint for the 2018 fiscal year.  This could pave the way for a tax-cut package.  That would be nice; but, like everything else, I’ll believe it when I see it.

Senate Passes Budget Blueprint,
Key To Trump Tax Effort

Oct. 19, 2017

Market Correction in October 1987Today is the 30th anniversary of the great stock market crash of 1987.  It has been referred to as “Black Monday (1987),” when the market dropped a huge amount in a very short time.

On that day, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) dropped 508 points, which was a 22.6% decline.  An equivalent drop today would be about 5,233 points in one day.

30 years after Black Monday,
could stock market crash again?

The 1987 crash resulted from a widespread panic.  When emotion takes over and trading is no longer calm or orderly, that is when “Black Mondays” happen.

Since then, the New York Stock Exchange has installed “circuit breakers,” which are designed to stop trading when stocks dive too far too fast.  This interrupts a panic and gives investors a chance to calm down.

Today, if the Dow declined 7%, trading would be suspended for 15 minutes.  If it declined 20%, trading would be shut down for the rest of the day.

Nevertheless, along with many others, I have a strong feeling that there will be a catastrophic stock market crash in the future, maybe over multiple days.  I also feel that it will be part of the worst economic disaster in U.S. and world history, even worse than the Great Depression of the 1930s.  I don’t like to think about it, but I do think that it is a realistic expectation.

Oct. 18, 2017

Yesterday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) briefly surpassed the 23,000 level.  However, it closed a couple of points below that mark.

Today, though, the DJIA closed above 23,000 and above 23,100 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.70% to 23,157.60, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.07% to 2,561.26, also a record high close.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 23,157.60   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,561.26

Oct. 17, 2017

Although the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed at 22,997.44 today, which was a record high close, it briefly surpassed 23,000 for the first time.  It reached 23,002.20, a record intraday high.

Dow zooms to
23,000 for first time

Oct. 16, 2017

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 22,900 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.37% to 22,956.96, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.18% to 2,557.64.  It probably won’t be long before the DJIA goes over 23,000.00.  Wow.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 22,956.96   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index: 2,557.64

Oct. 14, 2017

I last organized my vitamins and supplements into individual compartments on Apr. 29.  Each day, I have taken the following: a daily multiple; vitamins A, B complex, C, D and E; magnesium, selenium, zinc, fish oil, saw palmetto, glucosamine/chondroitin, iron and turmeric curcumin.

168 days of vitamins Individual vitamins

This supply will last for 24 weeks (168 days).  Keeping them in the refrigerator prevents them from losing their potency.

I began taking my last supply of vitamins on Apr. 30.  I will begin taking my new supply of vitamins tomorrow (Oct. 15).  These will last me until Mar. 31, 2018 (unless there are days that I skip taking them).

Oct. 13, 2017

Today is Friday the 13th.  It is the second one this year, including the one in January.

Fear of the number 13 is known as triskaidekaphobia.  Fear of spooky dates is paraskevidekatriaphobia.  It’s just another ordinary day to me.

Happy Friday the 13th
Oct. 12, 2017

Hoshana RabbahToday, President Trump signed an executive order aimed at taking action on ObamaCare.  He took this action on his own after Congress failed to repeal or repair the law.

Trump said that the order is “starting that process” to repeal ObamaCare.  It will be the “first steps to providing millions of Americans with ObamaCare relief.”

Some say that the order could undermine the stability of ObamaCare markets by opening up cheaper plans that could divert healthy people away from ObamaCare plans.  Democrats warn that the order is part of Trump’s larger plan to “sabotage” the health-care law and accomplish on his own what Congress could not.

In any case, the executive order largely does not make changes itself; rather, it directs agencies to issue new regulations or guidance.  Those new rules will go through a notice and comment period that could take months, officials said.

Trump clears way for ObamaCare 'alternatives' in
new executive order, goes around stalled Congress

I continue to believe that only major and radical changes would have a chance of reversing and repairing all of the harm and damage that ObamaCare has done to the U.S. healthcare system.  It would be similar to reviving a severely injured person, who has been in a coma for years, and getting that person to be fully alert and functional again.

In other news, this is the first year since 1893 in which 10 Atlantic storms in a row have reached hurricane strength.  This is the list of these hurricanes so far:

  1. Franklin
  2. Gert
  3. Harvey
  4. Irma
  5. Jose
  1. Katia
  2. Lee
  3. Maria
  4. Nate
  5. Ophelia

Four of these hurricanes have smacked into American states and/or territories.  It is difficult for me to disregard the possibility that these hurricanes have a supernatural undertone, as in judgment on America (see sign of Jonah).

Hurricane season does not end until Nov. 30.  So more hurricanes could be added to the list, making it a record-breaking year.

Oct. 11, 2017

Hoshana RabbahThis is the seventh day of the Feast of Tabernacles or Sukkot.  It also is called Hoshana Rabbah.  This is the great day during the Feast/Festival of Tabernacles when Jesus spoke about the following:

On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink.  Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.”  By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive.  Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified. (John 7:37-39)

Those who believe firmly and absolutely in Jesus as Lord can receive the gift of His Holy Spirit.  Then, if they maintain a humble heart of repentance, contrition and confession, and if they fully trust in Him they may be more likely to be protected and sheltered during the Great Tribulation to come.

The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him. (Nahum 1:7)

We are virtually at the end of the High Holiday (Holy Day) season.  In Jewish tradition, the verdict for the following year, issued by God (Hashem) on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, is finalized on Hoshana Rabbah.  Basically, this is the day of Final Judgment.

So although judgment “begins” on Rosh haShanah and is “sealed” on Yom Kippur, final “delivery” begins on Hoshana Rabbah.  In the U.S., with all of the disasters that have taken place during and after the season of Teshuvah, it concerns me that many more devastating events may be yet to come.  I hope not.

Oct. 10, 2017

Fireman fighting devastating California wildfires California wildfire map
Numerous large wildfires have been sweeping across California.  They have caused numerous deaths and widspread destruction.

In Northern California, fires have burned about 100,000 acres and destroyed at least 1,500 homes, businesses and other structures.  Many of the fires remain out of control.  Some are calling it the worst fire disaster in California history.

Fires in Napa and Sonoma Counties, the center of California’s wine country, began suddenly on Sunday night, Oct. 8.  Winds of over 50 mph caused the fires to spread rapidly.  The winds have died down somewhat but are expected to increase again tomorrow.

In Orange County in Southern California, Santa Ana winds, gusting 30 to 40 mph, caused a fire in Anaheim Hills to spread through 7,500 acres.  At least 24 homes have been damaged or destroyed.  With more high winds in the forecast tomorrow, conditions are expected to continue to get worse.

Thousands flee as wildfires ravage
Northern California; at least 15 killed

I last visited a couple of wineries in Sonoma County on May 28.  As far as I know, neither of them has sustained fire damage.

In other news, in another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 22,800 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.31% to 22,830.68, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.23% to 2,550.64.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 22,830.68   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index: 2,550.64

Oct. 9, 2017

A row of homeless people on 17th Street in San Diego In this Sept. 28, 2017 file photo a man passes behind a sign warning of an upcoming street cleaning in San Diego. Health officials say a deadly California outbreak of Hepatitis A may take a year or more to abate.
San Diego is my favorite city in the world.  All of my favorite things are there, including parks, beaches, restaurants, coffee shops and grocery stores.  Most of all, I’ve always found the year-round climate to be ideal—better than any place I’ve ever visited or lived.

However, because the weather is so perfect, San Diego has a substantial homeless population.  It is one of the few places in the USA where it is possible to be outside most of the time, day or night, without the weather being a significant factor.

For months, the cases of Hepatitis A in San Diego have been rising at an alarming rate.  Now, the city is experiencing one of the largest Hepatitis A outbreaks the country has seen in decades.  It seems that homeless people are major carriers and transmitters of this infectious, and potentially deadly, disease.

Since November, more than 500 people have fallen ill and 17 have died of the infection, just in San Diego.  In Los Angeles and Santa Cruz counties, where Hepatitis A outbreaks also have been declared, another 88 cases have been identified.

Officials throughout the state are now scrambling to vaccinate homeless populations, which are considered the most at-risk.  Since San Diego is a favorite vacation spot among Americans, it is feared that many visitors may be infected with Hepatitis A and carry the infection back home with them.

Now paramedics, under the supervision of nurses, have been given the authority to administer vaccines to the area’s at-risk populations.  This special measure was approved on Oct. 4.

So far, about 1,400 doses of the vaccination have been administered in San Diego.  However, even with further vaccinations and other measures, the Hepititis A outbreak may take at least another year to get under control, if that is even possible.

Paramedics authorized to give vaccines
amid San Diego hepatitis A outbreak

Oct. 8, 2017

Hurricane Nate makes its first landfall in Louisiana as a Catetory 1 storm Probable path of Hurricane Nate
Hurricane Nate made two landfalls, as a Category 1 storm, last night and very early this morning: first near the mouth of the Mississippi River in southeast Louisiana, then near Biloxi, Mississippi.  It is the first hurricane to make landfall in Mississippi since Katrina in 2005.

Before dawn, Nate weakened to a tropical storm and now is a tropical depression.  Today, there are flood watches and warning from Alabama to Virginia.

Nate is progressing through Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee and Kentucky.  Then it will continue to the northeast, further weakening as it goes.

Hurricane Nate weakens
to a tropical depression

Oct. 7, 2017

God warns before He judges.  What is God saying to the “divided” States of America?

An interesting discussion about this was aired today at Olive Tree Ministries.  Jan Markell hosted Dr. Dave Reagan of Lamb & Lion Ministries.  His new book is God’s Prophetic Voices to America.

They talked about some ominous points indicating why God’s judgment upon the USA may be coming soon.  Dr. Reagan feels that we have reached the “point of no return.”

God seems to have given American a window of opportunity to repent (for instance, during the season of Teshuvah).  Unfortunately, so far, a nationwide repentance has not taken place.  This interesting program, 57 minutes in length, can be heard here:

When Watchmen Warn — Audio

Oct. 6, 2017

Today, President Trump issued protections for religious liberty and protecting the unborn.  By doing this, he implemented his Executive Order 13798, which he signed on May 4: the National Day of Prayer.

Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, agreed with the moves.  He said, “President Trump is demonstrating his commitment to undoing the anti-faith policies of the previous administration and restoring true religious freedom.”

However, many liberal advocacy groups were outraged.  JoDee Winterhof of the Human Rights Campaign depicted the two directives as “an all-out assault, on women, LGBT people and others.”  Minority House Leader Nancy Pelosi called the birth-control rollback “despicable”; whereas, House Speaker Paul Ryan welcomed the decision, calling it “a landmark day for religious liberty.”

Trump DOJ and HHS Issue Major
Religious Liberty, Pro-Life Protections

Oct. 5, 2017

This is the first full day of the week-long Feast of Tabernacles or Sukkot.  It also is a special Sabbath when no regular work is to be done (Leviticus 23:33-35).

15-second slideshow

Sukkot in JerusalemAll native-born Israelites are to construct and to dwell in booths or “sukkot” (which is the plural of booth or “sukkah”) for a week.  This is a reminder to them of the temporary tabernacles in which their Israelite ancestors lived for 40 years after leaving ancient Egypt (Leviticus 23:42,43).

Jesus, whose birth was in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2; Matthew 2:1), most likely was born in a sukkah during Sukkot, not in a stable in December.  The word “tabernacle,” used as a verb, means “to take up temporary residence, especially to inhabit a physical body” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary).

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.  We have seen his glory, the glory of the Only Begotten, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:14)

The words in that verse translated as “made his dwelling” among us are more accurately translated as “tabernacled” among us.  So Jesus tabernacled with mankind for a few decades while He was here the first time.

Being a Jew, Jesus celebrated the Feast of Tabernacles and even taught in the temple courts during the days of this feast (John 7:1-44).  In the future Messianic era, during the Millennium, Yeshua/Jesus the Messiah will return to tabernacle with us again.  Representatives from the nations of the world will go to Jerusalem, where King Yeshua will be sitting on His throne, to observe the Feast of Tabernacles—essentially, a giant birthday celebration for Jesus:

At that time they will call Jerusalem The Throne of the LORD, and all nations will gather in Jerusalem to honor the name of the LORD.  No longer will they follow the stubbornness of their evil hearts. (Jeremiah 3:17)

The LORD will be king over the whole earth.  On that day there will be one LORD, and his name the only name. ... Then the survivors from all the nations that have attacked Jerusalem will go up year after year to worship the King, the LORD Almighty, and to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles. (Zechariah 14:9,16)

In other news, in another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 22,700 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.50% to 22,775.39, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.56% to 2,552.07, also a record high close.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 22,775.39   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,552.07

Oct. 3, 2017

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 22,600 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.37% to 22,641.67, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.22% to 2,534.58, also a record high close.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 22,641.67   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,534.58

Oct. 2, 2017

In another record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 22,500 for the first time.  The Dow was up 0.68% to 22,557.60, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index was up 0.39% to 2,529.12, also a record high close.

Dow Jones Industrial Average record high: 22,557.60   Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index record high: 2,529.12

Part of the rise in the stock market today was due to a rally in shares of gun makers.  For instance, shares of Smith & Wesson parent, American Outdoor, jumped over 3% in afternoon trading.  Evidently, this was a reaction to the horrendous shooting in Las Vegas last night.

Oct. 1, 2017

Las Vegas police with Mandalay Bay Resort in the background Windows in Madalay Bay Hotel where shots came from
The deadliest shootings in modern U.S. history took place late tonight in Las Vegas, NV, between 10:05 and 10:15 p.m.  At last count, at least 59 people (including the shooter) are dead, and 851 are injured from gunfire and the resulting panic.

The gunman was Stephen Paddock, 64, from Mesquite, NV.  When police were about to apprehend him in his hotel room, he shot and killed himself.  As of yet, his motive for the shootings is unknown.

Paddock used at least 10 guns to shoot countless bullets from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort.  He fired upon at least 22,000 people attending the three-day Route 91 Harvest country music festival, which was in its final night.

Las Vegas shooting: At least 59 dead in
massacre Trump calls 'act of pure evil'

Every Oct. 1, I’m always reminded of the 5.9 Whittier Narrows earthquake in 1987, commonly called the “Shocktober 1st earthquake.”  The quake was felt throughout southern California and southern Nevada.  Today is the 30th anniversary of that event.

It happened at 7:42 a.m., just as I was finishing breakfast before going to work.  My house in Irvine was about 40 miles from the epicenter, and it rocked for several seconds but did no damage to my property.

I was watching the morning news out of Los Angeles.  A few minutes after the main shock, there was a small aftershock, which I did not feel in Irvine.

I remember watching two of the news guys, Christopher Nance and Kent Shocknek.  They got freaked out due to the shaking and the swaying lights, caused by the aftershock, and jumped under their desks.  You can watch a short David Letterman video where he talked about it and then showed a video of what happened.

I also felt a strong aftershock three days later, registering 5.3 to 5.5.  Then life went on as usual.  Here is a video, under 5 minutes, showing damage from the initial quake on Oct. 1 and from the aftershock on Oct. 4: SoCal Whittier Narrows Earthquakes (1987).

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