The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction?

Does Isaiah 9:10 really contain an ancient mystery that holds the secret of America’s future?

Note: This review is an abridged version of a book of the same title.

PUBLISHING UPDATE: The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction? is now available for purchase on The Berean Call website and Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats.

Article available in pdf format at this link.

A discussion between Dave James and Jonathan Cahn, moderated by Jimmy DeYoung can be found at this link.

The first one to plead his cause seems right, until his neighbor comes and examines him. (Proverbs 18:17, NKJV)

Moderated discussion between Dave James and Jonathan Cahn on Prophecy Today.com here.

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Introduction

The Harbinger, by Jonathan Cahn,1 is about a series of signs or omens which he believes have manifested in America beginning with the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. The author believes he has discovered an ancient mystery in Isaiah 9:10-11 that “explains everything from 9/11 to the collapse of the global economy.”2  Although he uses a fictional narrative as a framework, the book is based on what he believes are undeniable facts from the biblical text, the corresponding history of 8th century B.C. Israel and current events of the last decade in America. As Cahn states at the beginning of the book, “What you are about to read is presented in the form of a story, but what is contained within the story is real.”3

The overall purpose of The Harbinger is to call America to repent for turning her back on God and moving away from the foundations upon which the country was built. It is also to warn of the danger of God’s judgment that this represents. Not only is this a valid message, but one that needs to be proclaimed. Jonathan Cahn is to be commended for his passion and commitment to sharing this message with as wide an audience as possible.

However, because of serious flaws throughout the book, the potential dangers may well outweigh the benefits. Many of the author’s views and ideas as presented in The Harbinger are misguided, having both significant exegetical and theological problems. Additionally, the book could well leave its readers with serious misunderstandings about how to appropriately interpret and apply the Word of God. Beyond this, it is also problematic because in trying to support his conclusions, Cahn appears to variously overstate his case, see prophetic fulfillment where arguably none exists and presses details to draw parallels between historical events beyond what the facts reasonably support.

Not only does The Harbinger fail to reveal a mystery in Isaiah 9:10, but in spite of the much-needed call to repentance, the book presents a danger to believers and unbelievers alike.

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A Runaway Success

Released on January 3, 2012, The Harbinger has already established its place as one of the best selling books of 2012. According to “CharismaNews,” on January 22, the The Harbinger debuted at No. 10 on the NY Times best-seller list in the “print paperback” category and at No. 28 in the “combined print hardcover and paperback “ category. In just 10 days, it had gone to reprint four times. (Charisma House is the publisher of the book.)4

As of April 26, on Amazon.com, it was ranked at #1 in the “Christian Books and Bibles – Fiction” category, at #1 in the broader “Religion and Spirituality” category, #2 in “Christian Books and Bibles – Theology” category and at #50 for all books.  There were also 346 reader reviews of the book on Amazon.com – with 282 giving it a 5-star rating.5

The founder of “World Net Daily,” Joseph Farah, has produced a two-hour documentary featuring Jonathan Cahn: “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment.” On March 13, in an email alert, WND noted: “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment DVD tops faith chart at Amazon.com…It is also the No. 8 most popular documentary of any kind and the 247th most popular video for sale.”

On the day of the book’s release, Jonathan Cahn was interviewed by Pat Robertson on The 700 Club, who said of the book, “This is one great book…This is the read you need to make…It is a prophetic word.” The author has also been interviewed on a number of other programs as well, giving the book very broad exposure.

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Departure from a Biblical Hermeneutic

The heart of a biblical hermeneutic is the commitment to understanding the literary context of a passage. This is where Cahn’s thesis first runs into trouble. Nothing in the context gives any indication that either Isaiah or the Lord intended for Isaiah 9:10 to be understood as having to do with anything other than the Northern Kingdom in the 8th century B.C. Although the author has insisted in a moderated discussion with this reviewer that he does not believe Isaiah 9:10 is to, for or about America,6 the book paints a very different picture.

Although Cahn has tried to explain that the passage is only functioning as a “sign” to America, this is not a meaningful distinction. Biblical signs are revelatory and therefore prophetic, in that they signify that something is happening or is going to happen. And, this is exactly the way Cahn handles these “harbingers” in the bookmeaning that in at least some way he actually does see a direct connection with Isaiah 9:10.

Also, if Isaiah 9:10-11 functions to demonstrate a pattern of God’s judgment, as Cahn believes, why is it not identified as such, either here or elsewhere in Scripture? If it is a predictable pattern as he suggests, why is there neither a precedent nor repetition of the pattern in the Bible? Yet, it is the author’s contention that the nine harbingers he believes he has found in Isaiah coincide precisely with recent historical events, beginning with the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

Furthermore, there is no mention of the first seven verses in the chapter. Yet, these form a critical part of the immediate context of Isaiah 9:10 and represent one of the most important messianic kingdom passages in the entire Old Testament. This is a significant omission when dealing with the subject of Israel’s judgment because it includes the unconditional promise that even in the face of the coming destruction Israel’s future is still sure. The kingdom will still be established and Messiah will rule from the throne of David forever.

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A Prophetic Message?

Although Cahn says he does not claim to be a prophet, he does affirm that his message is prophetic. But, what else besides “prophet” would be an appropriate title for someone who believes he has discovered the hidden meaning of a biblical mystery and then proclaims this prophetic message as factual? He is doing more than simply relaying a message given by someone else. He is the originator of the message.

In the brief biography introducing the author, the back cover of The Harbinger has the following: “His teachings are seen on television and radio throughout the nation and are known for their prophetic significance and their revealing of deep mysteries of God’s Word.”

Others have also identified Cahn’s message as prophetic and him as a prophet. For example, in September, It’s Supernatural aired shows that were produced around interviews with Jonathan Cahn. Of these host Sid Roth said, “This may be—no, this is the most important prophetic show you will ever see.”7

On Amazon.com, the book description includes the following:

Hidden in an ancient biblical prophecy from Isaiah, the mysteries revealed in The Harbinger are so precise that they foretold recent American events down to the exact days. The revelations are so specific that even the most hardened skeptics will find it hard to dismiss or put down. It sounds like the plot of a Hollywood thriller with one exception… IT’S REAL.8

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Fact or Fiction?

Even though categorized as “fiction,” the story is prefaced by: “What you are about to read is presented in the form of a story, but what is contained within the story is real.”9  In other words, the book conveys what Cahn considers to be biblically accurate and historically factual. However, the lines between what is fact and what is fiction is not at all clear.

For example, the story centers around a set of small clay discs that are said to date from 8th century B.C. and connected with Isaiah’s prophecy. The purpose of the nine seals is to reveal the ancient mystery and to authenticate that their message comes from God. But do these seals really exist as an archeological find or are they simply part of the fictional storyline? The answer is not clear in the story and it seems very likely that many readers will think these seals do exist, although they do not.

In addition, rather than simply adding an element of authenticity to the story, the nine harbinger seals only make things more confusing for the reader. The obvious question is, “Does this mean that the author is using them as a literary device to suggest that his views are authentically from God (though perhaps confirmed in some other way)? “Are they inherently fact or fiction?

In the The Harbinger, the nine seals are given over a period of time, to journalist Nouriel Kaplan by a mysterious figure identified only as “The Prophet.”10 Kaplan and The Prophet are the primary characters in the book, along with a third lesser character, Ana Goren, a Manhattan publishing executive, to whom Kaplan tells the story of his encounters with The Prophet. Are The Prophet and Kaplan purely fictional characters or do they in some way represent real people? Do they represent two different people, a compilation of multiple people or are they rather just two aspects of the same person? Given the central role of The Prophet, is there really someone who is believed to be a prophet who gave the author his message? Or is the answer actually somewhere between the two? Based on the way the story develops and then concludes in the last chapter, one has to wonder if The Prophet and Nouriel Kaplan, when taken together, actually represent Jonathan Cahn. Are they fictional characters or are they real?

In the second half of the book, Kaplan has a dream about the dedication of the temple in Jerusalem which includes the biblical king Solomon. However, when Solomon turns around, he has unexpectedly transformed into George Washington on the Temple Mount. Is this dream just a literary device in the story or did the author actually have a similar dream? Although he has stated that he did not have a dream as described in the book, it is clear that the idea for the dream sequence did not develop in a vacuum. Could it simply represent Cahn’s contemplation and thought process as he sought to arrive at a meaningful interpretation of some of the events in America over the past decade? Once again, the crucial question is: “Fact or fiction?”

Another major issue is the interpretation of events in America since 9/11. Can the author’s interpretation of the events rightly be considered to be facts as he apparently does? For example, Cahn believes that God removed His “hedge of protection” from the United States which allowed the successful attacks on the World Trade Center. He also believes that these attacks marked the beginning of God’s judgment upon the nation.

However, to claim to know these things with the absolute certainty claimed by the author is to claim insight into the very mind of God, including His specific purposes and plans for America in this generation. Although one might speculate and form opinions, these things cannot be known for sure unless God were to personally reveal them. So, does the author believe he has received this necessary revelation? And if so, is he right? Is God using him as a prophet? Has God given him special insight into an ancient mystery? Has God truly shown him that his confidence in the veracity of his conclusions and interpretation is justified? Or does his message amount to nothing more than speculation? Fact or fiction?

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The Mystery of Isaiah 9:10: A Direct Link between Israel and America?

The author denies that he is arguing for a direct connection between Israel and America and maintains that the passage only demonstrates a pattern of God’s judgment. Likewise, he concludes that recent events in America, beginning with 9/11, are only parallels to that specific pattern. Yet, in multiple places the book gives the very clear impression that these are more than simply parallels and that a direct connection does exist. Based on what is clearly stated in the book, it is difficult to conclude that this is not precisely what Cahn intended to convey at the time. The following are just a few of the numerous examples.

[Ana Goren] “How could an ancient mystery have anything to do with September 11?”

[Nouriel Kaplan]An ancient mystery behind everything from 9/11 to the economy . . . to the housing boom . . . to the war in Iraq . . . to the collapse of Wall Street. Everything in precise detail.”11

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[The Prophet] “The Assyrians are the fathers of terrorism, and those who mercilessly plotted out the calamity on 9/11 were their spiritual children, another link in the mystery joining America to ancient Israel.”12

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[Kaplan] “So if the ancient mystery is joined to America, then somehow 9/11 has to be linked to the words ‘We will rebuild.’” 13

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[The Prophet] “Well done, Nouriel. So what would we expect to find in Washington DC?”

[Kaplan] “Some link between this city and the ancient vow,” I said. “Somehow Isaiah 9:10 has to be connected to Washington DC.”14

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[The Prophet] “And all referring to America’s campaign to defy the calamity of 9/11, as he links it all to the judgment of ancient Israel. 15

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[The Prophet] “Solomon was the king of Israel. Washington was the first president of the United States. There was something in the linking of ancient Israel and America, as with all the other mysteries.”16

Cahn’s belief in a direct prophetic link between Isaiah 9:10 and the United States could not be more clear. As such, the author’s theory about this direct connection unambiguously forms the “factual” basis for the entire story.

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The Mystery of Isaiah 9:10: A Driving Force?

Not only does Cahn seem to believe that there is a connection, but he also presents Isaiah’s words as functioning as a driving force in specific events in America over the last decade, set into motion by the attacks of 9/11. According to The Prophet, because of the link between Isaiah 9:10 and Israel, once the pattern is set into motion, each step of the progression must inevitably take place.17

The cause/effect relationship is also confirmed in his The 700 Club interview on January 3, 2012:

[The mystery] even has determined the actions and the actual words of American leaders. A mystery that goes back two and a half thousand years and is a warning of judgment and a call of God—a prophetic call of God.18

This comes perilously close to being a mystical view of the prophetic Scriptures because biblical prophecies do not function this way. Any prophecy as specific as Isaiah 9:10 also has a unique, specific future referent in view which sets parameters and limits on what constitutes literal fulfillment. That what is being suggested about Isaiah 9:10 sounds more like a sort of mystical incantation than a prophecy is reinforced when the author introduces the idea of “The Isaiah 9:10 Effect” later in chapter 15.

Undoubtedly, Jonathan Cahn did not intend to give this impression. But he would not be the first person to unintentionally confuse genuinely spiritual approaches with unbiblical and dangerous mystical ones.

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America: A New Israel?

In the April 4 discussion, as well as in email correspondence, the author has stated that he does not believe that America is the “New Israel” or has replaced Israel in God’s program. However, a number of exchanges between The Prophet and Nouriel Kaplan could easily leave The Harbinger’s readers with a different impression. The Prophet builds the case for the connection by referencing the thinking and intentions of America’s founders:

[The Prophet] But there was one other—a civilization also conceived and dedicated to the will of God from its conception . . . America. In fact, those who laid its foundations . . .”

[Kaplan] “The Founding Fathers.”

[The Prophet] “No, long before the Founding Fathers. Those who laid America’s foundations saw it as the new Israel, an Israel of the New World. And as it was with ancient Israel, they saw it as in covenant with God.”19

Although the author denies this, the argument of the book seems to specifically depend on the idea that America’s founders and early leaders had indeed established the nation to be in a covenant relationship with God similar to that of ancient Israel. If it were not for this belief there would be no book. However, God established a covenant relationship with only one nation through His covenant with Abraham. Abraham entered into the covenant by faith, forever establishing Israel as a unique nation in a unique relationship with God that would be enjoyed by no other nation.

While The Harbinger does not state that God has completely rejected national Israel, there is no reference to either modern-day or future Israel at all. This is a significant omission because the sense one gets from the book is that Israel had failed to heed the warnings of the prophet and was subsequently permanently annihilated. This impression is compounded by the fact that there is no mention of Isaiah 9:1-7 (as noted earlier).

Granted, it is beyond the scope of The Harbinger to present a fully-developed eschatology. However, all we know from the story is that ancient Israel did not repent and was therefore destroyed. The story then jumps to the vision the founders had for America to be the New Israel. Again, this gives the impression that Israel met its final end, which is precisely the warning the author is communicating to America if there is no repentance.

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The Ancient Mystery: The Nine Harbingers

As previously noted, the fictional part of the story centers around a “mystery” connected with nine small, engraved clay discs.[20.Page 9.]  The original purpose of the nine seals was to warn the Northern Kingdom of Israel of progressive stages in God’s judgment as prophesied in Isaiah 9:10.

“The bricks have fallen down,

But we will rebuild with hewn stones;

The sycamores have been cut down,

But we will replace them with cedars.” 20

The nine seals were “harbingers” of impending events in the passage that would take place if Israel did not heed them as warnings— events which would ultimately lead to a catastrophic final judgment resulting in Israel’s total destruction and collapse. And although the nine seals are only part of the fictional narrative, they do represent nine actual “harbingers” or signs which the author believes he has identified in the Isaiah passage. He also believes that he has discovered an ancient mystery—a pattern of judgment represented by these signs, that is being manifested once again in the United States of America. This is what the author means when he writes, “…what is contained within the story is real.”

NOTE: A thorough treatment of all nine harbingers is being included in a book-length response to The Harbinger by this author. Each of the nine harbingers has problems comparable to those discussed in this review.

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The First Harbinger: The Breach

Concerning Israel: God’s removal of his “hedge of protection” which allowed the Assyrians to attack

Concerning America: God’s removal of his hedge of protection which directly led to the breach of America’s security, providing an opening for the terrorists to attack on 9/11

While God protects whomever, whenever and however He chooses, a “hedge of protection” is a very specific type of protection. Such protection is mentioned only twice in the Old Testament: once in Satan’s accusation against God concerning Job (Job 1:10) and once concerning the nation of Israel (Isaiah 5:5). In the New Testament, it appears in only one parable which is also about Israel (Matthew 21:33; Mark 12:1). There is no indication anywhere in Scripture that any other nation ever has or ever will be protected in this particular way.

In the absence of any scriptural support, how can it be claimed with any certainty that 9/11 marked the removal of God’s hedge of protection? Furthermore, even if God ever has provided such a hedge of protection around America, is it not possible to also argue that it is still in place? There has not been another terrorist attack since 9/11—even though the motivation, intent and plotting to launch more attacks has continued to the present.

Also, if America enjoyed God’s hedge of protection, then what about Pearl Harbor? Hawaii was an American territory and therefore the attack was against America and on American soil. The next year, the Japanese captured and occupied two Aleutian islands of the Alaska territory. In the War of 1812, Detroit was captured by the British and Washington D.C. was captured and burned. Mexico invaded Texas in the Mexican-American War. In 1993, the World Trade Center was bombed by foreign nationals with the intent of taking down both towers. Was God’s hedge of protection not in place when these breaches occurred? If not, when was it put into place or put back into place?

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 Third Harbinger: The Fallen Bricks

Concerning Israel: The bricks which were originally used to build the city walls

Concerning America: Bricks that fell from buildings when the World Trade Centers collapsed.

Fallen bricks meant the Northern Kingdom lay in ruins. However, as tragic as they were, the 9/11 attacks involved only a few buildings, not an entire city, let alone the entire nation. And although there had been an airport security breach, this was not a breach of America’s military defenses, even when the attack on the Pentagon is considered.

The pattern of forcing current events into the Isaiah 9:10 prophecy continues with the author’s discussion of the bricks themselves. The fallen bricks in ancient Israel were the ruins of a destroyed city, while fallen bricks were only incidental in the World Trade Center attacks. In fact, it has been suggested that it was the lack of masonry construction that allowed the collapse of the towers.21

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Fourth Harbinger: The Tower

Concerning Israel: A spirit of defiance against God when Israel would declare that the destroyed city would be rebuilt

Concerning America: The declaration by America’s leaders that the destroyed towers would be rebuilt

On the fourth clay seal is the image of a tower which is described as looking like the Tower of Babel. With nothing in the text about a tower (more on this later), how does this fit in? In the story, it is connected with a “spirit of defiance” which prompts the declaration by ancient Israel to rebuild the leveled city with hewn stone—and in the case of the WTCs, to rebuild a tower at Ground Zero.

Israel knew that the Assyrian attacks were a judgment they had brought upon themselves. When they declared that they would rebuild, they were shaking their fists in defiance of both their enemies and their God.

This is not what happened in the wake of 9/11. Yet, in both the book and the documentary by World Net Daily, the author attempts to build the case that America’s leaders were proudly and arrogantly acting in defiance against God when they spoke of rebuilding (even though they didn’t realize it).22 This is very misleading because although standing in defiance of America’s enemies, they were demonstrably not standing in defiance of God.

The explanation of the ninth harbinger seems even more misleading. In the book, Cahn gives the impression that Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle concluded a speech on 9/12/2001 by quoting Isaiah 9:10.23  But, that was not the end of the speech. In the documentary by World Net Daily, Cahn specifically states that Daschle closes the speech with, “That is what we will do and we will rebuild, and we will recover.”24  However, this is not how the speech ended. There were two more sentences not shown in the documentary:

The people of America will stand together because the people of America have always stood together, and those of us who are privileged to serve this great nation will stand with you. God bless the people of America.25

By invoking God and thinking he was comforting Americans by using the Bible (albeit wrongly), his intent was clearly not defiance against God—it was exactly the opposite. To fail to include or mention his last two sentences is very misleading.

On September 11, 2004, then vice-presidential candidate John Edwards was speaking at the Congressional Black Caucus Prayer Breakfast. Cahn attempts to frame his speech as another unwitting act of defiance against God. However, an honest reading of the speech26  shows that defiance of God was the furthest thing from his mind.

However, he explains that both Daschle and Edwards were defying God without realizing it. In spite of their intentions, Cahn postulates that God was inspiring them to unknowingly pronounce judgment upon America.27

But how does he know that God is inspiring America’s leaders to prophecy? Unfortunately, he presents his speculation as fact. This is undoubtedly not part of the fictional storyline.

The author attempts to defend his theory by referencing Caiaphas, who unwittingly prophesied concerning the death of Christ (John 11:49-52) Cahn concludes that Daschle and Edwards intended to say one thing, but their words carried a far different meaning. However, that is not what happened with Caiaphas. His words were inspired to mean exactly what he intended. He just didn’t know how right he actually was. Once again, the author’s exposition of the biblical text does not stand up to scrutiny and the supposed parallel is simply not there.

Finally, Cahn appeals to the Septuagint (the ancient Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament) to bring the idea of a tower into Isaiah 9:10. The Septuagint has “let us build for ourselves a tower.”28  However, this phrase is not in the Hebrew text.

Furthermore, he doesn’t inform his readers that in contrast to the Hebrew text, the Septuagint indicates that it is Israel that cuts down the sycamores. And rather than planting cedars, they, too, are cut down—apparently for the purpose of building the tower. So, the Septuagint eliminates the sixth and seventh harbingers. It is extremely misleading and ethically questionable to pick one phrase out of a translation in order to prove a point when the passage as a whole has a very different meaning.

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The Isaiah 9:10 Effect

The Harbinger is roughly divided into two major parts. Chapters 1-13 lay a foundation for the author’s arguments as he attempts to correlate the nine harbingers of Isaiah 9:10 with events of the last decade in America as evidence for the first wave of God’s judgment. In the second part of the book, chapters 14-22, Cahn presents a second wave of God’s judgment, a “second shaking,” as a final warning of impending severe judgment if America persists on its present path and refuses to repent. The “Isaiah 9:10 Effect” is introduced in chapter 15 and is used to explain the second shaking, which is the collapse of the entire American economy. The Prophet explains the Isaiah 9:10 Effect as follows:

“The attempt of a nation to defy the course of its judgment, apart from repentance, will, instead, set in motion a chain of events to bring about the very calamity it sought to avert.”29

Thus, the Isaiah 9:10 Effect is presented as having prophetic force, going far beyond a simple parallel or pattern. Cahn believes that the Isaiah 9:10 Effect is what has driven the course of events since the 9/11 terrorist attacks:

[Kaplan] “And they connect 9/11 to the economic collapse?”

[The Prophet] “Not only do they connect them . . . they determined them . . . down to the time each would take place.”

[Kaplan] “An ancient mystery?”

[The Prophet] “Yes, an ancient mystery upon which the global economy and every transaction within it was determined, a mystery that begins more than three thousand years ago in the sands of a Middle Eastern desert.”

Thus, the Isaiah 9:10 Effect is presented as an inviolable principle that once set in motion, the corresponding prescribed outcome is inevitable. Furthermore, it is discussed as if it were completely biblical, yet nothing even remotely similar to this theoretical principle is mentioned or implied anywhere in the Word of God.

The theory of the Isaiah 9:10 effect also raises an obvious, but very important question: Are there any other prophetic passages in the Old Testament that also function in a similar way? How many other prophecies directed to Israel can be correlated to historical events in the United States? Is there also a “Genesis 12:1-3 Effect?”—or a “Joshua 1:6 Effect?” Are such principles to be found throughout the Old Testament or is Isaiah 9:10 the only such passage (which would seem unlikely if the Isaiah 9:10 Effect were true)?

The bottom line is this: If a theological idea cannot be supported by the Bible, then someone simply made it up. Unfortunately, this is precisely the nature of the Isaiah 9:10 Effect—it is made up.

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The Shemitah

The Shemitah as a Mystery

In the Law God commanded that every seventh year Israel must allow the land to completely rest with no harvesting, reaping or any other work in the fields. In addition, all who owed money to creditors were to be released from their debts (Deut. 15:1-2). This was the Shemitah (or “release” in Hebrew).

Humanly speaking, the Shemitah should be crippling for any nation that attempted to practice it. However, Israel was not just any nation. It was the one special nation God had raised up to be His chosen people. God would demonstrate His love and faithfulness to Israel by providing enough in the sixth year to meet the nation’s needs the following year. Conversely, Israelites would demonstrate their faith in God as individuals and as a nation by obeying the command to keep the Shemitah and trusting Him for the results.

The author correctly has The Prophet stating that the Shemitah was never given to nor binding upon any nation other than Israel.30 However, in an apparent contradiction, he also believes that hidden in the Shemitah is a mystery that is now affecting the United States31—a mystery that extends to even the precise timing of events to the day.32 He argues that God has imposed a Shemitah upon the United States as He did when Israel had turned from Him and failed to voluntarily observe the Shemitah for centuries. In what seems to be an attempt to mitigate this contradiction, he presents the Shemitah as a principle as he did the Isaiah 9:10 Effect. Yet, as is true of the Isaiah 9:10 Effect, Scripture nowhere presents the Shemitah as either a mystery or a pattern or a universal principle connected with God’s judgment.

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The Shemitah as a Principle

In order to lay a foundation for the argument that the Shemitah is a principle, the author makes the following assertion through the words of Nouriel Kaplan: “Seven years—the biblical period of time that concerns a nation’s financial and economic realms.”33 While Israel was on a seven-year cycle as required by God, this statement further suggests that the Bible indicates that seven years represent a natural economic cycle in general. However, once again, there are no biblical passages to support this idea.

Furthermore, extensive internet research does not reveal any uniform conventional wisdom or consensus among economists or financial experts that seven years is a natural economic or financial cycle (although apparently it has been suggested a couple of times). Things are said about various cycles that range from three to ten years, but cycles of specifically and exactly seven years apparently do not exist. And, yet, the Shemitah was precise to the exact day.

Cahn’s theory that the Shemitah is a principle thus appears to be yet another example of speculation raised to the level of fact, which is once again misleading. Yet, the second half of the book is built on this theory.

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The Shemitah as a Sign

According to Cahn, the Shemitah is not only a principle, but is also a sign which is “given to a nation that has driven God out of its life and replaced Him with idols and the pursuit of gain. The issue is the Shemitah as a sign of judgment, the sign that specifically touches a nation’s financial and economic realms.”34

However, if the Shemitah is genuinely a sign from God, then it is a predictor of things to come because a biblical sign is revelatory. Therefore, if God warns that judgment will come through a particular set of events, when those events begin to happen they signify that the prophesied judgment is underway. On the other hand, in the absence of such a prophetic warning, even if identical events happen, it cannot be known with any certainty that God is executing judgment. For example, even though God judged Egypt through a locust plague, that another region of the world also experiences a swarm of locusts does not necessarily mean that those people are under judgment.

Because the Word of God does not give the required prophetic warning concerning America and the Shemitah, there is no Scriptural basis to interpret recent events as a sign that God is imposing a Shemitah as judgment upon the nation.

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The Shemitah and America

What, then, could bring someone to suggest any sort of connection between the Shemitah and America? The only potential explanation would seem to be that the author, in some sense, believes the founders were right about America being in covenant with God, even if not as a new Israel per se, at least patterned after Israel’s covenantal relationship with Him. This is not to suggest that Cahn believes that national Israel has been replaced and has no future in God’s program. Unfortunately, there seems to be a significant disconnect between what the author says he believes about this and the ideas he presents in the book.

The Case for the Shemitah

The examples Cahn uses to demonstrate that America is going through an imposed Shemitah feel contrived. In contrast, the Shemitah in ancient Israel was simple. The Israelites were not to work the land and the wealthy lenders were required to forgive the debts owed to them by average people. When God imposed the Shemitah on Israel, He forced them to stop working the land completely by taking the nation into captivity. And, as captives, the wealthy were brought down to the level of their debtors and the financial system completely collapsed. The imposed Shemitah was not simply a sign, it was the judgment itself. It meant utter devastation. Almost everyone lost almost everything.

Since the situation with America has been significantly different, the author must go to great lengths in an attempt to support his interpretation of both the Bible and history. He has clearly done extensive research and has assembled an impressive array of facts and figures. Because he writes and speaks with conviction and authority, he makes a case that initially seems compelling—and one that has persuaded a lot of people that he is right.

However, upon closer examination, little of what is presented concerning America remotely resembles the Shemitah imposed by God upon ancient Israel. The first major component of the imposed Shemitah, forcing the land to lay completely fallow, has no contemporary parallel, even if possible economic modern-day equivalents are considered. Nothing in this regard indicates that an imposed Shemitah might be underway.

An analysis of the other major component, concerning credit and debt, reveals that the parallels proposed by the author are not much closer. He draws his support almost exclusively from the failure of a few large financial institutions and the response of the federal government. He cites four corporations.: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Lehman Brothers, and AIG.

However, this doesn’t follow “the ancient pattern.” Ancient Israel was overrun by a foreign army with everything of value either destroyed or taken. In sharp contrast, even though the U.S. and global economy has gone through a serious contraction and certainly many have been hurt, it has not been even close to the scale, relatively speaking, of the utter devastation that occurred in Israel.

As the author rightly notes, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were rescued by the federal government when the Federal Financial Housing Authority placed them under conservatorship. They did not collapse.35

When Lehman Brothers filed the largest bankruptcy in history after being denied a federal bailout, the U.S. and world markets were rattled for weeks. However, the analysis in the book includes overstatements and what feels like spin in the effort to find support. Although The Prophet states that the fall of Lehman Brothers triggered the implosion of the American and global economies,36 the fact is that they did not implode. They were seriously shocked, even damaged, but they did not collapse.

Unfortunately, because the failure was staggering in terms of dollars ($639 billion in assets and $619 billion in debt),37 the reader’s initial reaction might be that the author has made his case on this point—but he has not. If both the assets and debt of Lehman Brothers, at $1.25 trillion are added together, this represents only an extremely small percentage of the world economy. Even when compared to just the American economy, which has an estimated value of $188 trillion in assets,38 it comes out to only about 0.6%—a far cry from what happened when God judged Israel and imposed a Shemitah.

The author continues to try to build his case by citing the September 29, 2008 stock market crash as the “greatest single-day stock market crash in Wall Street history.”39 However, in only one place does the author note that it was the biggest drop in terms of points not in terms of percentage. At the same time, he repeats over and over that it was the “biggest crash in Wall Street history.” The fact is that at just 7%, the drop in the Dow Jones industrial average did not even rank in the top ten.40

To be fair, the Dow did drop a total of about 25% in the two weeks following the defeat of the bailout bill in the U.S. Congress on September 29. Once again, however, this does not rank in the same league as the market collapse in 1929 when it fell 48% in just over two months. By the time the crash had run its course, stocks had lost 90% of their value.41  Was God imposing a Shemitah in 1929? What about the other major market crashes that are in the top ten?

Even the above examples do not exhaust the numerous overstatements in this section, but they do give a sense of just how statistics can be used to prove almost anything.

________________________________

King Solomon and George Washington

Confirmation of the Israel-America link

As previously noted, Kaplan, the journalist, has a dream about the dedication of the temple in Jerusalem under king Solomon (chapter 19). Although the author has said that this dream is simply part of the fictional storyline, it seems unlikely that there is not a specific reason behind connecting Solomon and George Washington given what is in the previous eighteen chapters. Why does Solomon transform into George Washington on the Temple Mount? This suggests that Cahn does, in fact, believe that there is much more than some superficial parallelism between the establishment of ancient Israel and the establishment of the United States as an independent nation.

Although preceded by kings Saul and David, it was Solomon who built and dedicated the temple. This finalized the establishment of Israel as a nation because it was then that God came to dwell among His people once again—not in a temporary tent, but in a permanent structure. So, too, the inauguration of George Washington finalized the establishment of the United States as a nation. The factual message that Cahn believes he is communicating through this fictional literary device is unmistakable (and not too surprising).

At this point, it would seem difficult for the author to continue to deny that he has clearly connected ancient Israel and America together. In fact, that he believes they are linked is stated explicitly in the book:

[Kaplan] “Solomon was the king of Israel. Washington was the first president of the United States. There was something in the linking of ancient Israel and America, as with all the other mysteries.”42

___________

Mosaic or Abrahamic Covenant?

Also, despite denials to the contrary, Cahn seems to affirm, once again, that America is in a covenant relationship with God. As part of his explanation of the dream, The Prophet says, “The nation’s ground of consecration will become its ground of judgment.”43  A few pages later, Kaplan has traced the consecration of the United States to God’s purposes to the first capital, New York City—and more specifically to St. Paul’s Chapel, “The place where America was dedicated to God”44—which is located at Ground Zero.

In other words, a harbinger had been manifested in America, just as it had been in Israel. The place of Israel’s consecration, the temple, was destroyed, while the place of America’s dedication, Ground Zero, was also destroyed. Immediately following the above quote, The Prophet continues: “The Temple Mount represented the nation’s covenant with God. So its destruction was the ultimate sign that the covenant was broken.” In other words, the destruction of the place of consecration was a sign that the nation’s covenant with God had been broken—both Israel’s covenant and America’s covenant.

By insisting on pressing every detail as he has, Cahn has either tipped his hand as to what he really believes or has made a serious mistake that needs to be corrected because no one could come to any other conclusion but that he is saying Israel and the United States are both God’s chosen covenant nations. When combined with the fact that he only refers to Israel’s destruction, but never its restoration as modern-day Israel or its future hope as the center of the Messianic Kingdom, he gives the unmistakable impression that America actually does constitute a new Israel.

Another serious question is that of precisely which covenant was broken? Was it the Mosaic Covenant or the Abrahamic Covenant? The foundation of America has been in view throughout the book, but it was upon the foundation of the Abrahamic Covenant that the nation of Israel was established. If Cahn is somehow proposing that Israel managed to break the Abrahamic Covenant, then that means God is finished with national Israel. If that is not what he is suggesting, then The Harbinger needs to undergo some serious revisions to clear up the theological confusion caused by this ambiguity.

___________

Confirmation of prophecy to America

In chapter 20, the author once again demonstrates that there is a discrepancy between what he now says he meant in the book and what he actually wrote. He emphatically denies that Isaiah’s prophecy is to America. However, he explicitly states that there is a prophetic word from Solomon to America:

[The Prophet] “So the message is twofold. There’s another part to it, another prophetic word, and this time from King Solomon.”

[Kaplan] “From King Solomon to America?”

[The Prophet] “For that nation that has turned from God, for that nation from which the smiles of heaven have been withdrawn.”

[Kaplan] “And this word came during the dedication of the Temple?” I asked.

[The Prophet] “It came when the dedication was finished”45

________________________________

Preparing for Eternity

As stated in the beginning of this review, the author is to be commended for his desire to proclaim a message of repentance to America. His target audience is believers and unbelievers alike, which is one reason he chose to use the fictional format. He also rightly notes that national repentance can only take place at a personal level, when people individually turn to God. Because of this, chapter 21, “Eternity,” is arguably the most important one in the book. The challenge to be spiritually prepared for the day of judgment is quite clear as The Prophet states: “And no one is exempt. Each must stand before Him.46

Unfortunately, there are some issues which diminish the impact this chapter could have. A believer, or even an unbeliever who already understands the gospel would understand what the author is talking about. However, there are a few things which are either not stated, are unclear or require the reader to “connect-the-dots”—a difficult task without some prior exposure to Christianity.

Although the author does present the idea that Jesus is God in one place in the dialogue,47  it could be easily missed by an unbeliever. Neither is Jesus identified as “the Son of God.”

The book does talk about God putting himself in our place, “In our life, in our death, in our judgment . . . the sacrifice”48 which is a very good statement. However, while the Cross at Ground Zero is mentioned, the connection with Jesus and what He did is not. What is not clearly stated is that Jesus died on the cross, shedding His blood for our sins.

It was Jesus’ death that secured the forgiveness of sin and it is His resurrection that provides the sure hope of eternal life. Paul makes it clear in 1 Corinthians 15:1-6 that Jesus’ resurrection is an essential component of the gospel and in Romans 10:9 that one must believe in His resurrection to be saved. However, there is no mention of the resurrection in The Harbinger.

As previously noted, Isaiah 9:10 is in the context of one of the most important messianic passages in the Bible. Yet, the problem of not mentioning Jesus’ resurrection is compounded by the fact that His return is not mentioned either. Although Cahn repeatedly emphasizes the danger of coming judgment, nowhere does he tie it to the Second Coming of Christ. Neither does he mention the hope of the peace that will come to the earth during Christ’s rule over the promised millennial kingdom.

Cahn describes what someone must do to be saved:

[The Prophet] “By receiving . . . by letting go . . . by letting the old life end and a new one begin. By choosing . . . by opening your heart to receive that which is beyond containing—the presence . . . the mercy . . . the forgiveness . . . the cleansing . . . the unending love of God.”49

However, it is never explained that it is by simple faith that one “receives, lets go, chooses or opens one’s heart.” Neither faith in Christ, nor believing in Christ, nor trusting in Christ for one’s salvation are ever discussed. Someone with no biblical background would not understand what The Prophet means when he speaks of partaking in the infinite sacrifice.50 Unfortunately, the gospel is almost obscured in the midst of the many words, while things which could have made it much more clear are missing.

________________________________

The Tenth Seal

In addition to the nine harbinger seals, there is a tenth, which is Kaplan’s personal seal. In the last chapter of the book, which deals with the tenth seal, the author seems to reveal the connection between himself and Nouriel Kaplan. It actually seems likely that Kaplan is Jonathan Cahn himself.

Kaplan is Jewish, as is the author. Kaplan is from the priestly line of Levi, as is the author. Kaplan becomes a messianic believer in Christ, as is the author. Kaplan has been given a prophetic message by God, as the author apparently believes is true of himself. Kaplan is commissioned and anointed to become a prophet himself, just as many are saying of the author. Kaplan is to be a “watchman on the wall” to warn of impending judgment, just as the author sees himself. And finally, Kaplan is encouraged to get out the message by writing a fictional novel, as has the author.

________________________________

Conclusion

Jonathan Cahn wrote The Harbinger to call America to repent and turn to God, as well as to warn the nation that it is in danger of coming under the judgment of God if it fails to do so. This is a legitimate and very important message. He also rightly recognizes that the danger faced by the nation is ultimately a personal spiritual matter for each American.

This message could have been communicated in any number of ways, including through a fictional novel. That is not the main problem. The real problem arises from the way he has inappropriately handled the Word of God, from the many instances of speculation concerning the interpretation of historical events, and from the many overstatements and misleading statements he has made in order to make his case for an ancient mystery hidden in Isaiah 9:10.

Unfortunately, The Harbinger is a distraction from properly understanding the Word of God, particularly prophecy and so can legitimately be characterized as dangerous. It conveys what the author believes is a prophetic message, but the book clearly does not meet the tests for a prophetic Word from God. The Harbinger is misleading and therefore does not legitimately achieve what it sets out to do. Believers run the risk of embracing a misguided view of Scripture and a distorted view of history, while unbelievers will likely end up either skeptical or confused or both.

Cahn apparently anticipated that the book would encounter opposition, launching a “preemptive strike” against his critics:

[Kaplan] “They’ll do everything they can to attack and discredit it.”

[The Prophet] “Of course they will,” he said. “Otherwise they’d have to accept it.”

[Kaplan] “But not only the message.”

[The Prophet] “No, the messenger as well.”

[Kaplan] “They’ll do everything they can to attack and discredit the one who bears the message.”

[The Prophet] “Yes,” said the prophet. “The messenger will be opposed, vilified and hated, mocked and slandered. It has to be that way, just as it was for Jeremiah and Baruch.”51

To be clear, this reviewer is not an enemy of the Word of God or of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I accept the Bible as literally true and that all biblical prophecy will be fulfilled. I agree that America is truly on a dangerous path and could well find itself under God’s judgment, if that has not already begun. Americans do need to repent.

________________________________

  1. Jonathan Cahn is the senior pastor of Jerusalem / Beth Israel Worship Center in Wayne, New Jersey. On the church’s website, it is suggested that Beth Israel is perhaps the largest Messianic congregation in the United States. He is generally referred to as “Rabbi.”
  2. The Harbinger, from the back cover.
  3. The Harbinger, p. v.
  4. http://charismanews.com/us/32649-warning-book-to-america-debuts-on-two-new-york-times-best-seller-lists
  5. As of April 23, 2012. http://www.amazon.com/The-Harbinger-ancient-mystery-Americas/dp/161638610X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid  =1332454190&sr=8-1
  6. On April 4, 2012, Dr. Jimmy DeYoung moderated a discussion between Jonathan Cahn and this author which is available on the Prophecy Today website (www.prophecytoday.com)
  7. http://www.sidroth.org/site/News2?page=NewsArticle&id=10457&news_iv_ctrl=0&abbr=tv_ (at the 8:21 mark)
  8. http://www.amazon.com/The-Harbinger-ancient-mystery-Americas/dp/161638610X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1332907071&sr=8-1
  9. Page v.
  10. In the book, “The Prophet” is not capitalized, but it is capitalized here and elsewhere for clarity.
  11. Page 3.
  12. Page 38.
  13. Page 61.
  14. Page 104.
  15. Page 109.
  16. Page 195.
  17. Page 141.
  18. Beginning at the 2:15 minute mark: http://www.cbn.com/media/player/index.aspx?s=/mp4/SUB109_JonathanCahn_010312_WS
  19. Pages 18-19.
  20. Isaiah 9:10, NKJV
  21. http://www.cement.org/masonry/pp_fire_towers.asp
  22. At the 21:10 mark, DVD #1.
  23. Page 117.
  24. At the 44:38 mark, DVD #1.
  25. http://wfile.ait.org.tw/wf-archive/2001/010913/epf407.htm
  26. http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=84922#axzz1M02bgo9D
  27. Page 117.
  28. Page 66.
  29. Page 136.
  30. Page 159.
  31. Page 159.
  32. Page 161.
  33. Page 161.
  34. Page 159.
  35. http://problembanklist.com/fhfa-conservators-report-why-fannie-mae-and-freddie-mac-failed-0183/
  36. Page 161.
  37. http://www.investopedia.com/articles/economics/09/lehman-brothers-collapse.asp#axzz1sMPT0MMA
  38. http://rutledgecapital.com/2009/05/24/total-assets-of-the-us-economy-188-trillion-134xgdp/
  39. Page 164.
  40. http://money.cnn.com/2008/09/29/markets/markets_newyork/index.htm
  41. http://eh.net/encyclopedia/article/bierman.crash
  42. Page 195.
  43. Page 198.
  44. Page 206.
  45. Pages 221-222.
  46. Page 227.
  47. Page 232.
  48. Page 232.
  49. Page 233.
  50. Page 232.
  51. Page 251.
215 Comments
  1. My first comment ended up at the bottom of a different article, about Egypt. Anyway, just wanted to thank you for writing a book about “The Harbinger”! I will be buying several copies. No other Christian preachers or churches seem to be warning people about the errors in Jonathan Cahn’s book. Thank you for doing so!

  2. A well-needed, accurate write-up, nicely written and to-the-point. No revision needed. David, thanks for spending the time in putting this together to calm the hype.

  3. Dave I respectfully disagree with your assessment of Jonathan Khans book The Harbinger.

    Sincerely,

    Joe Hyde

  4. Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) DO understand that America is a covenant nation because of the covenant God made with the prophet Lehi in The Book of Mormon. That understanding neither proves or disputes the thesis in the Harbinger; but it does support his idea that America has a covenant relationship with God.

    • Yes, you are right. And it as because of this that I first began looking for signs of British/Israelism or American/Israelism in the book – which I really didn’t find, per se – although there are some significant issues surrounding the eschatology of the founders.

      Obviously the LDS claim is based on an additional spurious book – and not on the inspired Word of God.

  5. The Harbinger deals with a perceived prophetic warning to America coming from a CLEAR prophetic message from God to Israel.
    In pondering its validity I surmise that biblical application of coming jugment is to ALL mankind, ALL nations, not one nation (America). Therefore I conclude that the Harbinger is a fantastic novel-really intriguing but not a prophetic message to America.
    We often speak (as God’s people in America) that America will be judged and that judgment is comong upon America…and that is true in the smaller picture…. the real truth is that the entire world will be judged and judgment will fall upon all the world!
    I conclude Israel is the nation who fell to judgment under God, as His chosen people (nation) which turned from Him,
    No other nation shall see the singled out judgment as Israel received and even so Israel will be restored in the end. The future judmenton the world will not bring restoration.

  6. At the risk of sounding too harsh….wouldn’t it be true that a true prophetic Word from the Lord is DIRECT and not given as a novel. Come on! Wake up, people of God! and discern with the Spirit which you have been given! That other churches and pastors are not commenting on the Harbingers invalidity is not a statement on truth but a complete example of how God’s people are being blinded and accepting false witness…just as the Bible proclaims shall occur in the last days!

    • I understand your point and your concern. However, there are multiple times when the Lord uses parables to communicate prophetic truth indirectly. Parables are essentially very short fictional. For example, when Nathan the Prophet confronts David concerning his sin with Bathsheba – that is a prophetic, yet fictional parable.

      So, we probably can’t pound the pulpit on this one.

      Thanks for your comments.

  7. Dave,
    Thanks for the correction! II Sam 12:1-7 and on.
    Something new for me to ponder….parable and prophecy. You are absolutely correct!

  8. There are many, many parables in the OT; for some reason, it seems like hardly anybody notices them. When Yeshua returns, I’m sure I’ll be asking Him about many of them. I long for the day when He will unravel Holy Scripture to reveal the patterns contained in His Holy Word previously unnoticed by mankind. For me, the golden nuggets the Holy Spirit has shown me in various patterns that nobody else has “detected” (or at least published) are always an awesome find! When a person grasps the concept of PRECISION and PERFECTION in His Word, then he or she can “go after it” with full-force of reliance. In other words, test the things He has said, to be sure they are true. Realize His Word is fully written for you personally, giving vibrant life forevermore. Proceed boldly to the throne of G-d, but in the most humble of fashion.

    With the exception of at least eight things, G-d can do anything He wants. If He should choose to proclaim judgment on the people of a nation, He sure doesn’t need someone publishing a “2012 best seller” for a warning (He already has His “best seller” in circulation–The Holy Bible).
    If the L-rd wouldn’t allow a prophet to warn a family (see below, Luke 16:27-31), then why would He allow Jonathan Cahn in this day? What about sending a “Jonathan Cahn” to proclaim harbingers to one of the hundreds of other nations for a warning too? Nonetheless, certainly, the L-rd can use any tool He pleases to accomplish His good.

    Luke 16:27-31 “Then he said, ‘I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father’s house, for I have five brothers, that he may testify to them, lest they also come to this place of torment.’ Abraham said to him, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.’ And he said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ But he said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead.’ ”

    If David James did not write something addressing The Harbinger book, then I would have spent the time doing so as well. It is great to hear that a major ministry will be carrying David’s new book for sale soon.

    On another note, let us please pray for Dr. Grant Jeffrey and his family this day, as he is very serious in the hospital. What a champion of the faith.

    Oh, how I long for His return. Come L-rd Yeshua! Come back today! Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.

  9. Thanks I enjoyed your article. I have to say that my take away is that we do need to really acknowledge God for how good he is and quit taking him for granted. So regardless if the novel is true or not. I want to Stand in the Gap (Ezekiel 22.30) because I love this country and the people in it. I have encouarged some of my friends to read it because I do think there is never going to be restoration without revealation. To know the Lord is to Love him. Thanks again

  10. It seems to me all the preachers who teach that there are no signs or miracles after the apostles died are all Southern Baptist. Like David Hunt and McMann, who disagree with every one that does not fit into their box “us four and no more”. Jimmy DeYoung was speaking some years ago at a prophecy conference here in Winnipeg and was cought in his own lies…so much for libera Baptist theology. Jesus said he’s the same yesterday today and forever, maybe you should denounce this scripture too. After all it disagrees with the old Diehard Baptist Theology.
    I will never purchase anything from these so ill informed dogmatic teachers.
    Bill

    • Based on your comments, I don’t know if you read the article or not because the comments do not deal with any of the substance of my concerns, which a document with Scripture and history.

      We may disagree, but I would suggest it is probably a presumptuous to say we are misinformed. To do causes you to fall into the very trap of which you accuse us. In other words, if we don’t agree with you, and we don’t fit into your box, then we are to be dismissed out of hand. I see this problem all the time.

      It also seems odd that someone who appears to be so much against “dogmatic teachers” is so completely dogmatic in his denunciation of them.

      Beyond that, however, I would dare suggest that every one of the biblical writers as well as Christ himself were utterly dogmatic because they were speaking and writing the word of God. The only authority we have is the word of God.

      Of course we believe Jesus is the same always. Have you looked at that verse in context to understand what it means as the original writer under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit?

      And of course, you also believe that there are some changes in God’s requirements according to His plan – if not, pork, catfish, shrimp, and a whole host of other things would be off the menu.

      I would kindly suggest that comments on blogs be done in at least a spirit of humility and fairness.

      I trust the Lord will bless you as you study His Word.

      Dave James

  11. Did it remind anyone of a messenger leading Joseph Smith to the hidden ancient tablets?

    • Hi Reggie,

      Could you please explain this a little further – what part of the message of The Harbinger are you referring to?

      I’m familiar with the LDS views, but am interested in knowing more about what you see.

      Thanks,
      Dave

  12. My sentiments are similar to those of Dave’s.
    This is a typical challenge to anything written by a non-cessationist, any mention of ‘prophetic’ is seen as problematic and the views are quite predictable. It makes me wonder if they are familiar with the scriptures in Isa. in chapts. 45-49 which clearly point out that only the God of the Bible knows and reliably informs of future events. Prophetic voices have not always been abundant but down through the centuries since the Bible was written there have been those in tune with the voice of the Holy Spirit who have revealed the ‘secrets of men’s hearts’ and told of future events before they happened as signs of the inspired content. None of these true servants of the Lord hold to a view that adds to or replaces the truths of His holy word but instead teach the necessity of checking for agreement between scripture and their messages.

    • Jim,
      Thanks for reading my review and your comments.

      I’m not sure I follow you’re saying. So, I’m just following up for clarification.

      Is the first line of your comment what the rest of your comment is replying to?

      If the first line is agreement with my views, I don’t follow the rest of the comment in relation to that.

      Dave

  13. Very thankful for this review. It’s very thorough. The only thing I would probably want to add for more clarification is the fact that Is. 9:8-9 and further is speaking particularly about God’s verdict to Jacob (or Israel)the Northern kingdom, it consisted of 10 tribes. The idolatrous 10 northern tribes broke away from Judah- Southern kingdom (or Judean kingdom). Northern kingdom-10 tribes ended their history sadly by a failed conspiracy against Judah. So those verses describe God’s judgment which could not be averted already. The sin and social injustices were too great.. What a lesson for us to read and know that! All jewish people we know of now (including my family)are all descendants from the kingdom of Judah. By the way this explains why Jewish people are even called Jewish people- The term “Jew” (Heb. Yehudi) in its narrowest interpretation means someone from the tribe of Judah (Heb. Yehudah). Well actually to say Jew is almost like to call Japanese people Japs.. but, well, even Jewish people themselves are used to that name already.. Anyway, my point is- it is a very specific prophecy and I see it more as a verdict not as a warning at all… God already decided what He was about to do and just gave that message through Isaiah to be known! And I absolutely loved you mentioning Is. 9:1-7. What a promise there in those verses before He pronounced a verdict to unfaithful- there we see what He is about to do through the seed of David and inspite of everything, what a great hope He proclaims. We know that not even for their sake God did it, but for His own sake -“The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light’! Thank you,Dave, again for a good review. In the last days the deception will increase ,so we are to be trained to discern !

  14. Point of clarification on Bill G’s statement concerning Dave Hunt & T.A. McMahon. Neither Hunt nor McMahon have any ties to any “diehard Baptist” organization—or to any other denomination, for that matter. Hunt’s background is Plymouth Brethren, from which he was excommunicated, of all things, for his affirmation that God continues (according to His will and not the will of man) to bestow gifts of the Spirit” including healing, tongues, etc.

    At the same time, Hunt’s ministry, The Berean Call, is committed to exposing doctrinal heresies and unbiblical practices that have led to, or include, the abuse of such “gifts,” in accordance with the commandment of Scripture to “test all things,” expose false prophets, correct and rebuke false teachers, and to be a Berean in all things (Acts 17:11). It is for this reason that McMahon has also written a much-needed critique of The Harbinger, at TheBereanCall.org

    Furthermore, neither Hunt nor McMahon are part of some exclusive “four and no more” club. While the ministry of discernment and correction is unpopular (especially among those who need it most; Prov 9:8, Titus 3:10 etc.) it is nonetheless biblical, and needed more now than ever in these darkening days of increasing delusion, deception, and necessary division due to apostasy (Luke 12:51, John 7:43, Rom 16:17-18, etc.).

    Thank you, Dave James, for your review and your tone of gentle but firm reason as you seek to rightly divide the word of truth.

    • Thank you.

      My book, of which the article is an abridged version, is now with the publisher’s editor (The Berean Call is my publisher).

      We are hoping for a late July release date.

      Dave

  15. I just finished the book, which as you stated made some very compelling arguments, and I too am in agreement that America is heading in a dangerous direction. (Oddly enough I even vividly remember the Senate Majority Leaders mishandling of the scriptures). Regardless, I am glad that I decided to “check my facts” before putting stock into what Cahn purposed. Thank you very much for your rebuttal. I will be sharing this with my friends!

    • Thanks, Carl.

      We are now going through the final round of edits and are on track to hit our target release date for the book.

      The book will be around 220 pages or so and goes into extensive detail concerning each of the major points.

      After hundreds of hours of research, reading and writing, my early conclusions have been repeatedly confirmed – even the apparent coincidences tend to evaporate when examined to any degree.
      Dave

  16. Just finished reading your review. Thank you so much for a very clear answer. I just recently came out of the SDA church and upon reading the first few chapters was reminded so much of Ellen White. But couldn’t put my questions to words. You have confirmed my suspicions. Thank you so much.
    Carol Cooper

  17. Few days ago I spent some time on listening to a program posted on Jan Markell’s Olive Tree ministry facebook page – When Contending Becomes Cantankerous of June 16th and was reading some comments there,I also posted my own comments because it was so so amazing to me what is said there about The Harbinger. That ministry defends the book but unfortunately all their defense so far is based on pretty much that the author meant well and that he had very good intentions writing the book and that we ,americans ,need such a message and that we,those who critisize the book, miss the forest behind the tree.. Ama-azing! Dave, I decided to share with you portion from one of my comments there on Jan Markell’s FB page . Here it is :”..with all my respect to anyone else’ opinion but to me it is an abomination to listen to someone who makes the main character of his book consult a man who specializes in “mystical Hebrew writings”. As smart and sophisticated this 3 words can sound -“Jewish mystical writings” is nothing but Kabbalah (or modern type of it Zohar). It is AMAZING to me that Cahn uses something like this in such a book which is called by many “a call for repentance”. Exactly SUCH THINGS AS JEWISH MYSTICISM (which openly promotes magic, occultism, necromancy and such ideas as reincarnation, probably enough just to name those ),exactly such things were those reasons why Israel was punished over and over again. Why on earth this author is using this terminology in his book ?? We happened to visit Cahn’s congregation couple yrs ago(our friends from Brooklyn wanted us to go there with them) and did not notice it then(it was probably before he even wrote that book) but I listened quite a few of his recorded sermons since that and all I can says- I really would like him instead of constantly referring to those “Mystical Hebrew writings”, to denounce them and to educate people on how dangerous those writings actually are. If anyone would be interested to learn more about Zohar or Kabbalah, here is a good link http://www.crossroad.to/articles2/2012/harbinger-zohar.htm

    I also posted in that post this 2 quotes from The Harbinger so that any one who reads that comment of mine would know what I am basing my opinion on..(author chose such a style for his book that has to be a red flag for all those who is familiar with what Kabbalah is), so here are those two quotes :”Then I made a trip to Brooklyn. That’s where my friend was, an Orthodox Jewish man who ran a little bookstore, in back of which was a study, a library of all sorts of mystical Hebrew writings. That was his passion — finding meaning in mystical Hebrew literature. I figured he’d be the right one.” [p.240]

    “So tell me what it says?’
    ‘Blessed of God is the son of God’s light, the declarer.’
    ‘Who told you it said that?’
    ‘A friend… a friend who specializes in mystical Hebrew writings.'” [p.242]

    • Thank you for your comments.

      Yes, I am aware that some have chosen to defend the author and the book for reasons other than the majority of the content of the book.

      So far, very little has been said dealing with the specific concerns we address.

      In my book, which will be released in the next few weeks, I have a section where I specifically deal with the issue of Jewish mysticism in The Harbinger.

      I share your concerns and am aware of the “mystery” theme in much of Cahn’s messages – and discuss this in that section, as well.

      We are hopeful that this book will help many to see the very serious problems throughout The Harbinger.

      Thank you again.
      Dave

  18. Wonderful,Dave! I am glad you have a section about it in your book. It was just surprising to me that such discernment ministries as Olive tree ministry who in the past spent so much time exposing mysticism and occultism when it comes to TH they say nothing about it at all..

  19. Thank you for the review, I started the book, and immediately had a problem with negating Pearl Harbor and the terrorits in the 1970s & 80s. But the book has a great message, but I think his timetable is off

    • Unfortunately, more than just his timetable is off. There are problems with how he handles the Word of God, selectively chooses facts to support his theory and makes misleading statements.

  20. The book’s single theme is calling America back to God. 2 Chronicles 7:14… We can sit here and pick apart every part of the book, but at the end of the day America is losing her influence in the world. What’s so wrong with calling a nation back to humility and repentance. Sounds like God to me. It’s not rocket science. God have mercy on us… We try to be intelligent, but we end up being a distraction more than a help. God have mercy on us!

    • Hi Patricia,

      Thanks for your comments.

      Several observations:
      1. I noted very clearly the main message of the book and that it is a much-needed message.
      2. 2 Chronicles has nothing to do with America – it is a call to a nation that is God’s chosen people, Israel. America is not a parallel.
      3. There is nothing wrong with calling a nation back to repentance – but the book doesn’t even explain how to do that. Faith and believe are not mentioned one time in connection with the gospel in the entire book. Neither is the resurrection, apart from which there is no gospel. This is not picking nits.
      4. The demon-possessed slave girl in Ephesus (Acts 16) followed Paul and Silas for 3 days – proclaiming the TRUTH about their ministry – but this is not the way God’s truth is to be proclaimed – even if right – so Paul put a stop to it.
      5. The distraction is The Harbinger because it is claiming that God has said things he hasn’t said and done things he hasn’t done.
      6. Did you notice that Christians are never mentioned in the book?
      7. Even though he talks about judgment, did you notice that he never mentions Jesus Christ in connection with those coming judgments?
      8. Did you notice that he never mentions the death of Christ on the cross – but only refers to what looked like a cross at Ground Zero?

      You’re right, this isn’t rocket science. What is telling though is that so many Christians have somehow missed on picking up on these things – as well as many other serious problems in the book. The book is a well-executed illusion.

      This doesn’t mean, however, that God is not or will not be judging America. It may well be underway – but we must do God’s things God’s way.

  21. What I will not do is complicate a simple message. The book was labeled fiction for a reason. The responsibility of the church (Christians) is to disciple young believers. The book sends them in the right direction. Now, it is our responsibility to help them connect and remain connected with God through Christ. I think a needed approach would be en to start a discussion around the facts of the book and transform it into a bible study where the word is taught. I do believe you mean well, but the truth remains that God does want America to turn back to Him. You tell me 2 Chronicles 7:14 is not applicable to America, but I disagree. Standing before God, what would be your defense. America is wasting a way and someone calls us back to repentance and prayer and your only defense is 2 Chronicles 7:14 is not applicable. Give me the simplicity of the Gospel. God sent His son to reconcile a rebellious people back to himself.

    • 2 Chron. 7:14 was only one of 8 points and definitely not the biggest problem in the book. I’m not sure how you took one of 8 points and said that is my only defense. I’m sure not defending America on that basis. There is no defense for the direction this country is going. I’m proclaiming exactly the message being proclaimed in The Harbinger.

      You’re right – we need the simple gospel – but it’s not in The Harbinger.

      I have said over and over that Americans need to repent. I completely agree.

      As my book will show, which will be available within the next couple of weeks, the book actually has very few facts – and many of those are presented in a misleading way.

      This is not the way we should do the Lord’s work.

  22. Thanks for the post Patricia, agree with all your reflections. I think dispensation issues are behind a lot of the criticism of the Harbinger. It took awhile to come out but to say that I Chron 7:14 is not for us is the clearest indication. As an old radio preacher, maybe DeHann?, once said, every scripture has an historical, present day and future application. It’s from the mind of the Eternal One.

    • Unfortunately, sooner or later in any discussion of dispensationalism a straw man gets erected and then attacked. Dispensational theology is a biblical theology because it flows directly from a literal, grammatical, historical hermeneutic – consistently applied across genres. That being the case we do understand and completely agree that every scripture has some sort of practical application in every generation – a timeless truth. For example, if I tell my daughter to not steal a cookie, that doesn’t give my son license to steal an apple just because the law wasn’t too him. The principle was there. So, we do understand that 2 Chron 7:14 has an application to America – but since it is not to America, the timeless truths must be applied, not the specifics that involved only Israel. For example, Israel was promised a land with god-given geographical boundaries. Therefore, repentance would bring healing to their land physically. America has not been given land by God in the same way – therefore “healing the land” does not have direct application. Neither does God have a covenant with America as He did with Israel – so promises related to the covenant cannot be directly applied to the nation as a whole. The application is that the individual believers in an nation can collectively experience the blessing of God such that the “rain falls on the just and the unjust.” That is the application of 2 Chr. 7:14. However, the application is not at all what Cahn makes it to be in The Harbinger. That is a mishandling of the Word of God – although a popular one. There is a great responsibility that comes with saying God said something he did say or didn’t say. My book clears up this matter – and it has nothing to do with dispensationalism per se.

  23. I was reading last several comments today and noticed Patricia’s words- “We can sit here and pick apart every part of the book, but at the end of the day America is losing her influence in the world.” Why do Americans think that America has to have her influence in the world? Where Bible says that any country supposed to have influence in the world.. Lets pray that the church will have some influence in the world.., not America.. My opinion is that american christians are too american -focused ..Sorry I dont mean to offend anybody, but so many people from Europe and Africa are asking questions now about this book- why God is sending signs only to USA?? Is USA any special than other countries?? Another thing,I am so encouraged that such reviews as this one by Dave was actually done because majority instead of defending Word of God are defending this fictional and more than questionable book…which did not say anything new about repentance but just added some kabbalistic/mystical touch into this “repentance”… Cahn is saying that we need to understand some signs which God sent us… as if Bible and what is said there was not enough for us .., now suddenly we need special clues to understand what is already so obvious – yes, America,as any other country does need repentance, each person individually.. And I dont think if Obama and some other american leaders will repent right now that will garantee “national repentance” this book is talking about ! It is so sad that there is such a division about this book even among discernment ministries.. Some discernment ministries certainly need more discernment about it.. Thank you, Dave again,for your hard work explaining all the whys and whats and for not compromising God’s Word in a process!!!It is not easy to do when dealing with “national bestsellers” which are so praised and followed by majority..

    • Thanks for your encouraging comments.

      The final version will go to the digital printer tomorrow – with copies beginning to be available sometime next week or so.

      I will be doing an interview along with TA McMahon (The Berean Call) next week for at least two full days on Brannon Howse’s program.

      I have also been contacted by Chris Pinto (who has another well-known radio program) who has said he also wants to promote my book.

      I am about 3/4 finished with recording the audio version of the book, as well.

      There is discussion of a Spanish version, too, print, ebook and audio. So, we will see what the Lord chooses to do with this.

      Perhaps nothing – perhaps something significant. Whatever he decides is fine with me.

      The Berean Call staff thinks this is an important book and will be working hard to make it known.

  24. @Jim.. Thanks!

    The question still remains. Is God calling America to turn back to Him. He called Israel. Can He call America?

    @M. Ochman, to whom much is given much is required. We (America) were blessed in so many ways. Consequently, America has a responsibility to the world. God gave her the influence for a reason. I guess the saying is true…. If you do not use it, you will lose it. Peace!

    • Your question has been answered multiple times.

      God called Israel as his chosen people to be faithful to the covenant they had with him at the national level.

      No such covenant relationship exists with America.

      The as a gentile nations, the parallel to America is not Israel in any way – it would be Nineveh.

      The people of Nineveh were called on to repent – it was not a call to repentance at a national level, it was a call for individuals to get right with the God of Israel.

      Of course, there are national-level implications whenever a large segment of a society is in a right relationship with God – it affects everything. But that is substantially different.

      So, yes, he called Israel – and he can call Americans – but he is not calling America as a nation to something that has never existed. Much recent work has been done to dispel this myth.

      The nation has been blessed as a whole because of the freedom the Constitution guarantees for its citizens – which allows them to freely worship and influence society in a way that few nations have ever done. God’s principles work – even if used by non-Christians because they reflect God’s nature and character.

      This has allowed the nation to have a positive influence in the world for many things, including freedom and the spread of the gospel.

      The judgment that the nation will experience at a national level will come as His people within the nation are suppressed, throttled, persecuted, demeaned and ignored.

      Every nation shares responsibility. Every Gentile nation shares a responsibility consistent with the degree to which they have been blessed.

      However, this isn’t exactly the same responsibility that Israel has as a nation.

      Also, the Word of God guarantees that a day is coming when every Jew will be a believer as a remnant turns to him. However, this promise extends to no other nation. There will probably be nations where there are few believers and certainly not enough to turn a nation around. Enough Jews will be believers that the nation will turn back to God.

      We need to keep our eye on the Word of God and handle carefully and in keeping with its absolute authority. Taking passage out of their context and then misapplying them comes perilously close to saying God has said something he hasn’t said – and there is a name for the one who does that.

  25. Was this nation dedicated to God?

    We will just have to agree to disagree. I believe God wants to use America as a whole.

    • The thing is, I’m not sure this is what we disagree about. And that’s not what my article is about.

      Perhaps God does want to use America – I have not problem with this idea in principle. But before we make a declaration that something is an incontrovertible fact we must have biblical support? Without biblical support it’s only speculation, a guess, a hunch. Not that there’s anything wrong with extrapolation.

      In hindsight, we can certainly see that God has used America and Americans in many ways. I don’t disagree with that at all. I have no problem at all with wanting the nation to turn to God so that he can continue using us in the future.

      I do know that God’s overall desire is to bless – that is Scriptural – and nations need to act such as to experience God’s blessing.

      So, I’m not seeing where we disagree on this.

      The only thing we disagreed on was whether “my people” of 2 Chron 7 is America. In context it is not a Gentile nation – nor would it ever be a Gentile nation.

      The principle there is that “my people” could refer to all those who are believers outside the nation of Israel – but we know that America will never be made up entirely of believers. America is not the nation of only the believers in this country – it is the nation of believers along with all those who are dragging the nation collectively into the moral abyss.

      Because of this, American believers do not have “land” – this is not our home. Our citizenship is in heaven. However, 2 Chron 7, specifically speaks of healing the land of God’s people – which belongs to His people alone – unlike America – after they have experienced the destruction that comes with judgment.

      These are not simply matters of semantics. They have to do with how we approach the Word of God responsibly – which going back to this article – Cahn has not done in The Harbinger – not at all.

      I’ve appreciated the interaction.

      I trust the Lord will continue to bless you.
      Dave

  26. “Does Isaiah 9:10 really contain an ancient mystery that holds the secret of America’s future?”

    You bet it does! 2 Timothy 3:16,17 (HCSB) states this, “ 16 All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for rebuking, for correcting, for training in righteousness, 17 so that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.
    The Holy Bible: Holman Christian standard version. 2009 (2 Ti 3:16–17). Nashville: Holman Bible Publishers.
    Friend, America had better wake up and fast. Isaiah 9:10, is definitely referring to ancient Israel, you can’t argue against that. However, I feel that America is dangerously close to incurring the same divine judgment and wrath as Israel. As a nation we will be judged not so much on the basis of the ungodly acts committed by ungodly sinners, but for the professing Christians willfully turning away from the true God to follow hollow deceptive philosophy of man. We are a proud nation that continually and willfully defies God. We have to understand that no nation came about on its own, but rather each were planted by God for his purposes. Honestly, I feel that the only reason God has not completely judged this nation is due to Americas protection of Israel (Genesis 12:1-3).
    This nation is doing wicked things in God’s sight abortion, gay marriage, idolatry and spiritual adultery or fornication. In my humble opinion, America is resembling the “Babylon the Great” more and more.
    Rest assured we have God’s America has God’s attention. (Jeremiah 18:1–10)

    • Hi Jim,

      Thanks for taking the time to comment on this article.

      I’m a bit confused, though. I agree with virtually everything you said (including the fact that God could be or soon may be judging America) – except for Isaiah 9:10 referring to America, which is most definitely does not – nor does any other OT passage refer to America specifically.

      Have you read both The Harbinger and my article?

      If so, then you can see that not only is Isaiah 9:10 specifically referring to ancient Israel, but that it is referring exclusively to ancient Israel.

      2 Timothy 3:16 does not mean that Isaiah 9:10 refers to America the way Jonathan Cahn is arguing. I am extremely conservative when it comes to believing and applying 2 Tim. 3:16 – as I am with all passages of Scripture.

      There are innumerable biblical and historical problems with The Harbinger.

      T.A. McMahon and I will be discussing my book (The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction – set to be released next week) with Brannon Howse on his program for two days this week.

      My book goes into much more detail and is documented much more extensively than my article. It clearly demonstrates that Jonathan Cahn has created an illusion with his book and virtually everything in his book are not even coincidences, let alone from the hand of God.

      The book will be available through The Berean Call website, as well as Amazon.com and other places.

      Dave

  27. At this point, I’m just going to address the “defiance” issue because this one, to me, is probably the easiest one to refute.

    Just because Tom Daschle said, “God Bless the people of America” at the end of his speech, does this somehow nullify the defiance? Was there any mention in his speech of falling down on our faces as a nation before God in repentance or just that “we will rebuild” and “stand together” talk? His “God bless the people of America” is nothing more than a good way to end a speech as well as lip service to God and the people.

    If I discipline my son, he can say “I’m sorry and I won’t do it again” until the cows come home but if he keeps KNOWINGLY and WILLINGLY disobeying my wishes, his words don’t matter – he’s still being defiant! Actions speak louder than words. The people of our nation, including our leaders, KNOW we do many things in violation of God’s Word but we continually dig our heels in in defiance of God and are not changing course. That is defiance, plain and simple.

    This argument is also like saying that, because Glenn Beck is always talking about “getting back to God” and saying “God bless America”, that automatically nullifies his devilish doctrine.

    • Hi Laura,

      Thank you for your comments.

      If this is the easiest one of my concerns to refute, then that puts The Harbinger in a very precarious position – as you haven’t really given a refutation.

      I’ll just address one of the issues you raise: Jonathan Cahn can’t have it both ways – on the one hand you say they were knowingly being defiant of God – but a major argument in The Harbinger is that they pronounced defiance unwittingly – without meaning to do it – not doing it knowingly and willingly.

      It is undoubtedly true that America’s leaders are largely defiant of God in any number of ways at many different times. However, that is not what they were doing when they spoke in the wake of 9/11. They were only defiant against the terrorists – not against God.

      Of course “God Bless America” is a just a way to end a speech – and has nothing to do with national repentance. However, the point it is they wouldn’t have said that if he were either intentionally or unintentionally being defiant of God.

      I’ll mention one other thing (among many that could be said): These men are not the spiritual leaders of America. They are not spiritual leaders of the church in America. They are not speaking on behalf of believers. America is not a theocracy and America is not a nation in covenant with God as was and is Israel. They neither represent God to the nation nor the nation to God. And at least one reason why they didn’t repent is because they did not view 9/11 as judgment by God for sin – and the fact is that it is not certain that it was God’s judgment. It very well could have been – but they weren’t looking at it that way. It could be argued that they should have known, but the fact is they didn’t – so once again, it cannot be said that they were defying God either wittingly or unwittingly.

      I encourage you to read the more recent article posted last week about my book which has just been released. As you will see, The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction? has been endorsed by very conservative theologians, Bible teachers, pastors and ministry leaders – all who proclaim without reservation that America does need to turn to God. So, those who agree with my views are not just liberals who don’t believe in sin or judgment.

      I hope you will consider reading The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction?, because it goes into far greater detail and demonstrates even more clearly that The Harbinger is not a warning that God has given to Jonathan Cahn.

      Blessings,
      Dave James

  28. Hey, Dave. Thanks for answering my post so quickly. I haven’t been getting very many answers from others on my questions/comments so I truly appreciate it.

    When I said the “defiance” issue was the easiest one to refute, I was speaking of myself only – not the experts who could take on the other issues much more competently than myself. I just don’t know enough to do that and I certainly am not in that category and don’t pretend to be.

    Why can’t Jonathan have it both ways? Aren’t there “seemingly” contradictory things in scripture like God’s sovereignty vs. man’s will? Or God’s election vs. man’s choice? Doesn’t the Bible teach that God has written His law on our hearts to know right from wrong? Some of our leader’s consciences may be seared but that doesn’t negate the fact that they are defiantly saying these things, does it, regardless of whether or not they are so far gone that nothing will prick their hearts anymore?

    When it comes to the whole covenant issue, I leave that up to the experts. However, I do ask one thing. When it comes to “covenants” made with God, are they ALWAYS initiated by God except in the case of marriage? When I made my vows to my husband, I believe I entered a covenant relationship that was initiated by myself and my husband so can we say with total certainty that God did not honor the vow the Puritans made to enter America into covenant with Him?

    I do plan on reading everything I can on the subject as I always want to be on the side of truth.

    And, again, I thank you for your quick response. I feel like I’m finally getting somewhere and not just being ignored anymore.

    • Hi Laura,

      I really try to respond to every comment – and hope to do so unless the volume becomes unwieldy.

      You bring up a couple of really good points. Obviously I can’t go into the depth that I go into in the book – which is 223 pages, so about all I can do is give a basic cursory response – which I hope will just provide some food for thought.

      RE Defiance: Yes, you’re absolutely right about seemingly contradictory things in the Bible. However, the things you mention are really in a different category and not really applicable in a similar way concerning defiance. But, having said that, I don’t doubt for a moment that many of America’s leaders have seared consciences, but that doesn’t mean they were being defiant against God in this particular situation. Let me give you an illustration:

      If a 15 year-old boy has a really bad attitude, let’s say 99.99% of the time – and he is defiant to the core against his mother. And let’s say that she sometimes disciplines him for his ranting and raving – about which he frequently gets angry. Then let’s say that one of the kids at school gives him a really hard time, saying nasty things to him – then he comes home and tells his mom that he is going to punch this guy’s lights out the next time he sees him. Even though he may occasionally feel this way about his mother, too – at that moment, he is not being directly or indirectly, wittingly or unwittingly defiant against his mother – he is defying the kid at school and only the kid at school.

      This is essentially the situation with America’s leaders. Another point at which this “harbinger” breaks down is that Israel’s leaders were intentionally defiant against God and not just against the Assyrians. God had warned them through the prophets and they knew he was using the Assyrians to judge them. The two situations – in Israel and America – are not even remotely comparable in this regard.

      Yes, we can make vows to God that are binding upon us as individuals – but this is a different situation than a nation. Israel was a covenant nation – called and chosen by God. No other nation ever has or ever will be in that situation.

      For example, God dealt with Nineveh – and as a result of Jonah’s ministry a large portion of the city’s population repented and turned to God. Certainly the nation could have experienced God’s blessing as people got right with him, but they were never in a relationship with God that was anything similar to Israel as a nation in any way. There is no place in the Word of God that suggests any nation that would like to do so can initiate a covenant that God would honor. The reason we know it happens with marriage is because the Bible teaches about it. However, there is zero biblical basis for even suggesting that another nation might end up in that situation. We cannot claim anything like this without instruction in the Bible – it is completely speculation – and that is what The Harbinger is built on in its entirety, speculation.

      Again, because my book is much more comprehensive and detailed, I think the things I’m concerned about will become much more clear should you choose to read it.

      I really, really appreciate the opportunity to interact – and I am confident that the Lord will bless you and guide you into all truth about this matter.

      Dave

  29. So, then, what shall we do?

    I have read the Harbinger and admit it was and is seductive in its symmetry of the prophetic being worked out in our midst, as I pray the Word will come alive in our time……but I admit also my insides were in a twist over many of the points of discord you point out, Dave, and I agree with you.

    So…post Harbinger reading and pre the reading of your thoughts, I had read 2Chron7:14 to mean that if ‘my people, called by my name’ meaning the church, would ‘pray and seek his face, he would heal our land’…..so if it’s not healed it means WE were not doing our job of praying for surely God would keep his covenant….

    But we are not in a covenant relationship as a nation! God has a covenant relationship with one nation only, and that is Israel. America may have dedicated herself to God and as a fledgling nation desired to follow him in unity….but that is not covenant.

    So….what now? Same thing! We must pray! For God to heal our land and if possible forstall what is appropriate judgement. But God’s response will be on the basis of his great mercy towards his people and their prayers, not because he is Bound to respond on the basis of covenant. He has committed to each and every one of his believers to hear and answer every prayer that is prayed…and these answers are not prophetically predetermined, carried forth by those who have no idea what they are doing….he is a God that hears us and may yet relent.

    I offer these thoughts as a non theologian and so invite correction…….

    • Hi Susan,

      Thank you for your comments and thoughts. You are quite right in what you suggest (although I would offer just a bit different way to handle 2Chron 7:14 – which I will note below – yet, you are right in general about this too).

      As I point out in my book (now available at wwww.thebereancall.org), if America is to be considered a parallel to any nation, it isn’t Israel, but Nineveh. It is about a nation experiencing God’s blessing as the cumulative effect of blessing individuals within a nation – and of course, perhaps forestall judgment on the nation as a whole.

      RE 2Chron 7:14 – this is probably one of the most misused verses in the OT. “My people” is a technical term that specifically and exclusively refers to the nation of Israel – and the church was not in view when God said this. The church constitutes a segment of God’s people, to be sure, but God was specifically talking about both physically and spiritually restoring Israel if they would turn to him as a nation. America will never turn to God as a nation – and American’s don’t have a promised, covenant land to heal and restore.

      This doesn’t mean that there isn’t a practical timeless application of 2Chron 7:14 – and that as his people we can be sure he will forgive and bless us if we turn to him – and there may be some spillover effect for the nation. And if we do not, then judgment will begin with the church.

      Thank you again.

      In His Care,
      Dave

  30. I’m trying to respond to every comment as well but, boy, there’s a lot! But I truly appreciate the dialogue. I can’t tell you what a breath of fresh air it is to get responses, even if we disagree about some things.

    I will read the book. I don’t ever want to be afraid to expose myself to the other side of arguments. That would certainly make me a “lop-sided” person.

    I have to respectfully disagree as far as the defiance issue in our leaders as I believe it is BECAUSE of our unrepentant sins that God allowed the attacks to take place. The Holy Spirit’s restraining ministry did not restrain the full force of evil that day. And when the Spirit of God is taken out of the way before the tribulation period, pardon the expression but “all hell will break loose.”

    Regarding your illustration, you’re right… that child may have been directly defiant against another child at school but I’m sure his mother would be suspicious that it was due to his bad attitude that got him in trouble in the first place. I don’t really want to go down that rabbit trail though cause it’s one of those “what if” scenarios.

    I’m not totally sure that the people in the northern kingdom were shaking their fists at God as well as the Assyrians. They may have been asking, as we did in our country, “Where was God?” but I’m not sure it went any further than that. Is there something in the Hebrew language that really pinpoints that down? I know you mentioned that they had the prophet’s warning but wasn’t Israel known for stifling the prophets, even killing them cause they didn’t want to hear their message? Doesn’t tradition tell us that Isaiah, himself, was sawed in two? Wouldn’t they, as the secular media does today, attempt to do everything to squash God’s truth and message while listening to the “all is well” prophets?

    I’ll have to learn more about God’s covenants, that’s for sure. I know of someone, another Messianic Jew, Zola Levitt, who did a series on God’s covenants years ago but I never checked into it so I definitely have some work ahead of me but I, excitedly, look forward to it.

    I have another question altogether different. There is someone who endorses your book listed on the back cover who I know, for sure, did a series linking Deuteronomy 28, Leviticus 26 and Isaiah 5 to America today and has talked about how God uses a template to judge nations. I just checked his website and he is STILL selling these products. So my question is, what is the difference, if any, between what this man is doing with these particular OT scriptures originally intended for Israel but just applying it to America today and what Rabbi Cahn did with Isaiah 9:10? I emailed that person a month ago and got nothing but dead silence back. However, I admit I wasn’t very pleasant toward him so maybe that was his justification for not answering me and, for that, I have repented, but REALLY need an answer to that question because it is so confusing and contradictory to me.

    I, too, am confident the LORD will lead me into all truth – including the truth about The Harbinger. It’s a promise of God that I fully believe.

    And, again, I truly appreciate the absolutely WONDERFUL dialogue!

    Blessings back at ya,
    Laura

    • Again, these responses are more food for thought than in-depth discussions.

      I will just number them to keep things straight.

      1. We don’t know why God allowed the attacks to take place. The most we can possibly do is speculate. We just don’t know. Beyond that, in the book I document that there are about 55 terrorist-related incidents EVERY DAY – that is over 20,000 per year – with every single one being THWARTED. Here’s the problem when we engage in speculation – if we think about the number of attacks that have been prevented both before and after 9/11, there is FAR MORE evidence that God was and has been satisfied enough with the goodness of America to prevent these from happening. He only allowed one out of tens of thousands. I’m not saying that this is why we haven’t been attacked again over the last 11 years – I’m just pointing out there is really comparatively very, very little evidence that 9/11 was because of our sin. It very well may have been – but we just don’t know. Anyone who says it was part of God’s judgment or warning is just guessing. This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t respond as if it were a warning – but that is a different question.

      2. Not sure what you’re saying about the prophets because your argument only reinforces my point. By killing the prophets they were defying God very directly.

      3. I would have to look at the series you are talking about – I’m not sure which person you’re talking about (Brannon, I think). Anyway, I don’t know exactly what he said, and it could be that I would suggest he might need to word something differently. But, in general, I would suggest that there is a basic pattern of God’s judgment that can be seen and appropriately considered by all – namely that God has given his revelation of his righteousness and has set that as the standard for everyone. When those standards are broken he often sends one or more warnings and sometimes does relent when there is repentance -and often there is judgment follows the failure to repent. That is a template – a general pattern.

      However, this is *completely* different than what Jonathan Cahn is saying. He is saying that *exactly* what happened to Israel when attacked by the Assyrians – step by step, in precise order and detail is the template. In fact he says there are nine specific elements – and here’s also a major difference – when he talks about the “Isaiah 9:10 Effect” he means that Isaiah’s prophecy CAUSED each of the things to happen again in America. This is not how prophecies work – but rather turns them into a mystical incantation. Another problem is it cannot be considered a precise pattern biblical pattern because it is found nowhere else in Scripture. You have to have at least one or two other examples for something to be a biblical pattern. Otherwise it is just a unique way that God handled a specific situation.

      A classic example would be Ananias and Saphira in Acts 5. We know what happened when they “lied to the Holy Spirit” – God struck them dead. But we can’t say this is a pattern because it doesn’t happen anywhere else in Scripture. It was a one-off unique way in which God dealt with that specific situation. God could certainly do it again. But since it isn’t a repeated pattern, if someone tells a lie and then moments later dies of a heart attack, we cannot say that God must have struck him down. We just don’t know. We might speculate and wonder – but we can’t say for certain as Cahn does in The Harbinger.

      Dave

  31. 1 – Point well taken.

    2 – My point which I will pose as a couple of questions is, “Did the prophet’s words ever make it to the ears of the common people or did the religious leaders make sure they killed them ASAP to ensure they wouldn’t?” “Can we say, with absolute certainty, that the common people really knew of Isaiah’s prophecies?” I really don’t know. I’m just asking.

    3 – Yes, it’s Brannon. It was a few years back and I remember it making a HUGE impact on me. So much so, that I automatically assumed he would love Jonathan’s book. I will just say that I definitely have more research to do as I am out of my element regarding this matter but I assume this would then go back to the whole “covenant” issue.

    I am very grateful that you gave me this “food for thought”, took the time and spent the effort.

    Blessings,
    Laura

    • 2. I have never heard it suggested that the religious leaders were the only ones who set themselves against the prophets. It seems that it was very likely similar to what happened at Kadesh Barnea for example, when the people as a whole rejected the report of the 2 spies and accepted that of the 10. We also see the same pattern in the New Testament as John the Baptist was a prophet under the Law of Moses. He was preaching out among the common people. The religious leaders set themselves against him, but not before he had made his message known to the average person. Also, Jesus said to the people that they have Moses and the prophets – which indicates that the average person was aware of their preaching.

      3. Again, the way this is treated in The Harbinger is far different that the way Brannon would handle this.

      By the way, today I did an interview with Brannon along with the director of The Berean Call – we did an hour long program – and will do a second hour on Tuesday. Today’s program should be available on the http://www.worldviewweekend.com website already or will be within an hour or so.

      If I can be of further assistance, let me know.

      In His Care,
      Dave

  32. Going back to #1 – I want to be clear. I still believe the leaders spoke in defiance against God (which was the original reason I posted and the only argument for which I felt I had/have a strong case) when they quoted Isaiah 9:10. I have a very difficult time believing that was just a mere “coincidence” and that all those harbingers are mere coincidences even if I don’t have the “chops” to argue every point.

    2 – Oh no! Another question. Didn’t the religious leaders withhold information about a suffering/dying Messiah that would come? I was taught that they withheld Isaiah 53 (maybe even all of Isaiah as even the Jews today, I understand, question that book… but you can correct me on that point) and Psalm 22.

    I look forward to hearing that broadcast.

    Blessings,
    Laura

    P.S. Don’t think I’ll be able to post anymore today… got to get dinner on the table and spend time with my family! So, until tomorrow… (and after I listen to that first installment on wvw website).

    • I think that once you see my comprehensive handling of every major issue in The Harbinger you will see that the evidence is so skewed and selectively used that there aren’t even coincidences. It’s not that there are just explanations – the events aren’t even remotely close coincidences.

      And that is at the heart of the problem. That these coincidences even exist is an illusion, albeit a well-executed illusion. But like any illusion, the audience sees exactly what the illusionist wants it to see – but what the audience thinks it is seeing does not correspond to reality.

      What my book does is to do a “reveal” – it “moves the camera” to a different angle so the audience can see what’s really going on.

      It’s really very unfortunate.

      If you go to my most recent article, at the end I posted the 8 endorsements for my book to give you a feel for what some very good conservative Bible teachers think after reading both books.

      Have a nice evening.

      Dave

    • Forgot #2:

      No, they didn’t withhold Isaiah 53, they wrongly interpreted it to say that the “suffering servant” was the nation of Israel, rather than the Messiah.

      That is the way Jews continue to handle Isaiah 53 today.

  33. A form of Godliness…but completely denying the power thereof. I think that phrase in the Bible says it all. You cannot deny that our nation is experiencing judgement. Look at our nation since 9/11 people. Look at the freedoms lost, the massive increase of debt, the jobs leaving, the economic crash of 2008…oddly enough fell on Rosh Hashanah, the seventh month in the Hebrew calender, and also fell 777 points. No, your greek logic will not see this important harbinger, but divine knowledge will see this, because it is totally divine. The sinking of our economy is completely tied to 9/11, you are a fool if you do not see that. Low interest rates, two illegal wars, and the urge to consume beyond our means, all lead to the crash of 08 and the great recession. Not to mention electing the most liberal man our nation has ever had as our leader. Did we take heed of Gods divine warning??? NO…but we still have a chance, but the time is winding down.
    We must understand the significance of our sins and the sins of our nation. We abort millions of unborn, we have shed the blood of millions of innocent people in Iraq, public prayer is banned, the ten commandments are out of our schools, and the sanctity of marriage is completely being compromised. You people are delusional if you do not think that our nation is being warned. We need to look at our way of life and instead of meddling in the affairs of others (middle east) and rest of the world. If we do not get the log out of our own eye, and continue to pick at the needle in others, we will be judged by God. I hope there will be righteous people standing in the gap or our nation as well as the church. Without the saints of God in this country, this place would be tore up from the floor up. That is the only thing holding back His judgement on this country.

  34. A form of Godliness…but completely denying the power thereof. I think that phrase in the Bible says it all. You cannot deny that our nation is experiencing judgement. Look at our nation since 9/11 people. Look at the freedoms lost, the massive increase of debt, the jobs leaving, the economic crash of 2008…oddly enough fell on Rosh Hashanah, the seventh month in the Hebrew calender, and also fell 777 points. No, your Greek logic will not see these important harbingers, but divine knowledge will see this, because it is from God. The sinking of our economy is completely tied to 9/11, low interest rates, two illegal wars, and the urge to consume beyond our means, all lead to the crash of 08 and the great recession. Not to mention electing the most liberal man our nation has ever had as our leader. Did we take heed of Gods divine warning??? NO…but we still have a chance, but the time is winding down.

    We must understand the significance of our sins and the sins of our nation. We abort millions of unborn, we have shed the blood of millions of innocent people in Iraq, public prayer is banned, the ten commandments are out of our schools, and the sanctity of marriage is completely being compromised. You people are delusional if you do not think that our nation is being warned. We need to look at our way of life and instead of meddling in the affairs of others (middle east) and rest of the world. If we do not get the log out of our own eye, and continue to pick at the needle in others, we will be judged by God. I hope there will be righteous people standing in the gap or our nation as well as the church. Without the saints of God in this country, this place would be tore up from the floor up. That is the only thing holding back His judgement on this country.

    • Barry,

      I’m not exactly sure why you chose to come after me on the way you did – and why “fool” would enter into the discussion.

      It makes me wonder if you actually read my entire article because I agree with almost everything you said – and I note that in the article.

      I also don’t get the “Greek logic” comment. I’ve been in ministry and teaching the Bible as the literal, authoritative and sufficient Word of God for 25 years – with 16 of those as an overseas missionary. The Lord saved me from a life of sin and rationalizing away Him and His Word. I believe everything the Bible says in every detail. Beyond that, a huge amount of prayer has gone into this project and I have sought counsel from a number of very godly men with very good ministries who are very good Bible teachers.

      So, perhaps it might be helpful to ask some questions rather than resorting to ad hominem attacks and name-calling as the first salvo. It doesn’t bother me personally, but that’s not the way we should discuss things with brothers in Christ – at least as a first contact. We may end up disagreeing, but we don’t need to question one another’s motives, intelligence, spirituality, commitment to the Lord and His Word, etc. Those kind of judgments need to be left in the Lord’s hands.

      Concerning the Harbinger – we just don’t know if 9/11 was God’s judgment on America. It could well have been. But there are about 55 incident every single day (over 20,000 each year) involving terrorists who want to cause more damage to America than what happened on 9/11. The question your theory doesn’t answer is why has the Lord protected the U.S. from every single one of these attacks.

      Should 9/11 have been a wake-up call? Yes, of course – just as should all the things that happen every day that highlight the rampant sin throughout the United States.

      It is because of God’s grace alone that we have been spared from far worse than has already happened.

      And, of course, as I state clearly in the article, Jonathan Cahn’s message of repentance is much-needed. However, we must get God’s message out in a biblical way – and the author has not done this. He has mishandled the Word of God, selectively used historical events and made misleading statements. I’m sure that was not his intention – but that is the result.

      I hope you will take time to read my book that details these things at a much greater depth and breadth.

      In Christ’s Care,
      Dave

  35. I’m back!!! I had a chance to walk away from this for a while and think/pray and I just had to get back on the computer before tomorrow. I have to say – you are really stretching me and your mentioning the 55 terrorist-related incidences EVERY DAY really threw me for a loop as far as speculating on God’s judgment but I’m happy for it.

    Jonathan always talks about an “initial strike on the land” when paralleling 9/11 with the Assyrian invasion which, in and of itself, may not be enough to prove his claim about our nation’s leaders speaking in defiance. However, if you put a couple other parallels together, that might make a difference. For instance, both attacks were VERY widely known but how many people know about all the smaller attacks that take place overseas or even at home unless you REALLY pay attention to the news? All people have to do is MENTION 9/11 and everyone knows what event you’re referring to (unless they have no capacity to understand) and #2 – it hit the civilian population, something I assume was the case with the northern kingdom (but you can correct me). Every single person in Israel and America were looking to the nation’s leaders for the official response – whether they called for national repentance or would speak in defiance… and I don’t know of one person who was not glued to their TV’s at that time. We were told that we would “stand together” and “rebuild” and “come back stronger than ever”, not that we should “pray”, “seek God’s face”, or “repent.” Since nations are made up of individuals, we as individuals then become responsible for our response toward God. Some of us, like me, knew it was time for some REAL introspection but we certainly didn’t get that advice from our leaders.

    Thanks for the clarification on #2.

    I have not yet had a chance to check out the Worldview Weekend broadcast but I do see it posted so I will be listening to it within the next 24 hours, probably on my morning walk when I’m fresh and can really pay attention.

    Anyway, like I said before, I will read your book so I can see exactly what you are referring to and will also be paying attention to any rebuttals regarding your book.

    Blessings,
    Laura

    • Thanks, Laura.

      I look forward to further interaction.

      Just one note about 9/11 being known – true, but so was the first WTC bombing in the 90s, which killed 6 people and injured 1000. Then there was the “underwear bomber.” Then there was the van with a bomb around New Year’s Eve Times Square a couple of years ago.

      And if we’re talking about God’s hedge of protection – what about Pearl Harbor – which was American soil (which is why the entire Pacific fleet was stationed there). Did you also know that the following year there was a Japanese attack on the Aleutian Islands. Had God removed his hedge of protection then? If not, then how can he did on 9/11. If he had removed it in those instances, when was it put back into place?

      And what about Washington being burned to the ground in the War of 1812.

      Also, if you read both Daschle’s and Edwards’s speeches, there is just no way to spin them to put defiance in there. While it was true, they did not talk about repentance, but that was not their role. However, there were a number among those who were spiritual leaders who did talk about repentance.

      Another thing that Cahn spins in the book is the quoting of Isaiah 9:10 – and mentions that they chose this verse out of 30,000 verses in the Bible. That is just not being honest with the reader. How many other verses are there in the entire Bible that talk about rebuilding after an enemy attack? I’m not sure if there are any others – so if they wanted to comfort the American people in the face of an enemy attack they had to use that verse and therefore it says absolutely nothing about whether God directly orchestrated that. But people aren’t thinking it through and they’re saying, “WOW! Yeah, it had to be God!” Well, no, it didn’t – not at all.

      It is also spin to point out how many times the phrase “we will rebuild” was used by the leaders. But again, what other verse would they have used? And don’t you think that everyone was simply saying what others said? And if you’re going to rebuild – how else could you phrase it. Just for the sake of argument, let’s say Cahn is wrong and they really weren’t being defiant – they would still have said exactly the same thing. Therefore, the fact that they said this is not at all proof of defiance the slightest degree. To try to use this to make his case and persuade the reader is just disingenuous.

      What you will find is that this basically happens with every single harbinger – as well as the Shemitah. There are a couple of interesting things, like 29 Elul – but when everything else is stripped away, it really does just become an interesting coincidence.

      This is why we are so concerned – because there is so much misleading information that has been set forth, all the while proclaiming that the message is directly from God.

      I am reminded of the demon-possessed girl in Philippi, who followed Paul around the city for three days: This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, “These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation. And this she did for many days. But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And he came out that very hour. (Acts 16: 17-18)

      This demonstrates that just because someone is giving even a biblical message related to salvation does not mean the message or the messenger must be from God. You have to look at other things to “test all things”

      We must be very careful if we are going to keep from being deceived by those who wrongly use the Word of God.

      And just one more thing: Remember this, that the majority of those who are actively promoting The Harbinger and those with whom Cahn is most actively working are some of the most well-known false teachers of this generation, while those who are concerned about The Harbinger are some of the most well-known conservative Bible teachers of this generation.

      Something is wrong with this picture.

      Hope this helps some (or maybe I actually hope it throws it for another loop :-)

      I will be praying as well.

      May the Lord bless you as you think and pray through this.
      Dave

  36. Oh boy! I think you’re going to end up writing your book all over again in these posts.

    I thought of those things you mentioned that happened in our past like the WTC bombing, etc cause I think I saw them mentioned in another article of yours which is why I pointed out the civilian population being targeted and the intense level of attention the country was paying to 9/11 as compared to those other things… except that I can’t speak about the events surrounding the War of 1812 when Washington was burned to the ground. I clearly remember the WTC bombing in 1993 but I did not pay NEAR as much attention to the follow up of that like I did after 9/11.

    I never mentioned a “hedge”. Don’t want to go there. I mentioned the Holy Spirit’s restraining ministry Who did not restrain the terrorists from attacking us on 9/11 and I know this because they WERE successful in that attempt, for the most part.

    I have a VERY HIGH REGARD for God’s sovereignty. He is in ABSOLUTE control of, not just every event, but even every word that is spoken. He even makes sure that what is in your heart will eventually come out of your mouth! That’s scary stuff! Proverbs tells us that the He turns the king’s heart whatever way he chooses and that the answer of the tongue is from the LORD so you put all that together and I see it as NO COINCIDENCE that they spoke those words in relation to 9/11 and that 9/11 was appropriate for those very words. I hope you don’t get angry with me about this. This is just how I see it. But thank you for praying for me. I can surely use all the prayers I can get!

    Brannon dealt with the demonic woman on his show a few days ago too so I’m very familiar with that. And, even in my original email to Brannon, I expressed concern about Jonathan’s association with people I consider questionable but, Jonathan said on Brannon’s show that he was unaware of the NAR and such and I believed him. I’ve never written my own book but Olive Tree Ministries discussed the fact that publishers send you out where they want you to go to promote your book and this IS Jonathan’s first book and his first experience doing this so plus he DID use a Charismatic publisher so, I’m giving him time but I’m hoping he will do more research and make some changes there. I mentioned to Brannon that it took him some time to weed out David Barton because he needed to work through the information. Well, that’s all I’m doing with Jonathan Cahn… giving him some time to work through the issues and make changes accordingly.

    God Bless, Dave!
    Laura

    • Just a thought concerning: “Proverbs tells us that the He turns the king’s heart whatever way he chooses and that the answer of the tongue is from the LORD so you put all that together and I see it as NO COINCIDENCE that they spoke those words in relation to 9/11 and that 9/11 was appropriate for those very words. I hope you don’t get angry with me about this. This is just how I see it.”

      We need to be careful about how we apply this. Indiscriminately using this logic means you ultimately should accept what I’m saying about what is wrong with The Harbinger. But then you would also have to accept The Harbinger. What do you do when there are two contradictory statements that the sovereign Lord allows? We can’t just randomly pick and choose – we need to have a basis for what we accept as true – and the foundation of The Harbinger is very, very weak.

      Again, we can’t say that it was an amazing coincidence for these men to use Isaiah 9:10 in relation to 9/11. If they wanted to use a Bible verse – what else would they have used to talk about rebuilding? Beyond that, it wasn’t so much these men as it was their speech writers – who obviously used the verse wrongly.

  37. I see exactly what you’re saying and it does make sense but, since this was such a devastating time for our nation, our response was critical and it was in THAT critical moment that those words were uttered – which placed us on our course. That is all I meant by that. I understand what you said about Daschle and Edwards not being the spiritual head to make any spiritual proclamations (or something to that effect) and the jury is still out on that point for me.

    Oh, but I did listen to the Worldview Weekend broadcast this morning and there WERE things addressed I had not heard before so it did give me more food for thought. I’m glad that you did clarify that there was nothing about Anglo-Israelism in Jonathan’s book too. I did appreciate that cause I couldn’t see how anyone could misinterpret that. But, I admit, I can understand how people would come away with the idea that we are in covenant and, like everyone else, I need to go through a process to process but I don’t know how long that process will take! There is so much about the Assyrian invasion that I just don’t know anything about and need to learn. You brought up points about that history that I hadn’t heard before and I look forward to hearing Part II.

    So, at this point, I’m listening. I’m learning. I’m open. I know I can EASILY be on the wrong side of an argument. I’m not too proud to admit that. However, there were things that happened that influenced my decision(s) about this. I felt as though Jonathan was treated very poorly… NOT by you (I LOVED your interview with him) but by some others but not DURING the interviews… just afterwards. And then I felt I, myself, started getting that same treatment and could only see those who were opposing Jonathan as “hypocrites” and “Pharisees’ since I perceived that some who were opposing him were allowing things in themselves that they criticized Jonathan for and I had proof. I tried emailing to get clarification but got nothing but dead silence. I know I probably appeared harsh (even though my sister said that the person I emailed doesn’t know my generally gentle spirit and would probably take what I said a lot harsher than intended) so it was probably justification for his ignoring me even though he NEVER ignored me before. But, on the other hand, I emailed Jonathan just to apologize to him for his being poorly treated… (especially his being accused of bad motives… this was most egregious to me and caused me grief) and asked Jonathan MANY questions about my own concerns about him and his book. He BENT OVER BACKWARDS to answer my questions. So I saw a “character contrast” and couldn’t help but think that those who were opposing him had completely “lost it”.

    Jonathan was also willing to place himself in so many “hot seats” which told me something about his character… that he was more honest. A couple of my former pastors did a study of the Seven Churches in Revelation and looked at them from four perspectives – Historically, Representatively, Prophetically, and Individually and I started thinking about that. It appeared to me like Jonathan was a Smyrnian-type Christian – receiving unjust persecution – and his critics were Ephesian-type Christians… those who were doing a VERY good work who were (and are) commended by God for that work (in Rev 2:1-7) but who forgot how to love. The Ephesians proved their love for the LORD by their continual labor to uncover “false apostles” (I found it STRIKING that the Bible specifically indicated “false apostles” in that verse) so I don’t think they lost their love for the LORD, just for the brethren. I don’t know if they just got so busy wielding the sword, they lost control and started “chopping the heads” off their brethren who MAY have been in SOME error but just needed GENTLE correction in the Ephesian church but I couldn’t help but make that connection especially since Jonathan made every effort to put his neck out there and take the high road. That is one thing you can’t fault him for. You can question his associating with some questionable people (and I would really like to see him make changes there too but I think it would have been much better for him to receive GENTLE correction… not a smear campaign launched against him as some have done) but you can’t fault him for avoiding any issues. He bent over backwards to attempt to clarify himself.

    I know that there are good men on both sides of this argument so the rest of us laypeople are left scratching our heads and questioning who is correct. Both Paul and Barnabas had a “sharp disagreement” over John Mark, I believe it was, and parted company as well so it happens. If it happened to Paul and Barnabas, I guess we shouldn’t be surprised that something similar came up in our lifetimes as well. And these were both GOOD men! I consider many on both sides of this argument GOOD men, like you.

    Anyway, thank you, thank you, thank you – Dave – for BENDING OVER BACKWARDS and taking so much time with me. It has truly influenced me in a very positive direction about YOUR character so I WILL take to heart what you say but I need time to do research and then process all the information.

    God Bless You,
    Laura

    • Thank you for your kind words.

      There have been things said about us publicly and to privately us (primarily from his supporters) that were actually far worse than anything any of those with concerns have expressed.

      I’m not dealing with those publicly, the Lord can deal with that – and I’ve seen that in the past couple of days that some have even removed these from their websites.

      If I can be of any further assistance, please don’t hesitate to let me know.

      Dave

  38. The harbinger seems to tie in with some Mormon teachings about the US being a Chosen nation and Jesus coming back to set up his kingdom here. What do you think?

  39. You’re welcome.

    I thought I should clarify something I said before about “the answer of the tongue” coming from the LORD. I hope you understand that I didn’t mean that every word that everyone speaks is a word from God, or righteous, or true, etc. All I meant is that I believe God is sovereign even over our speech. So much so that we will even betray the evil in our hearts with our very words… eventually… or speak good words that come from the heart depending on what goes into our thought life. “Taking every thought captive” is not easy but I can see why the LORD gave us this command. What is in our hearts will work out in our words and actions. So I just wanted to be sure to clarify that. I would have to have my head examined if I believed that Yikes!

    I don’t doubt that that is the case as far as others calling names and saying nasty things to you and/or others who oppose The Harbinger. I heard the word “Nazi” on one program and whoever said that NEEDS to repent, if they haven’t already done so. I do NOT agree with that character assassination stuff so let it be known that I TOTALLY and COMPLETELY REMOVE myself from that type of talk so I feel I must apologize for it. And I’m sure Jonathan himself is not happy with it either. It’s not fitting for the body of Christ.

    I will let you know if I have anymore questions/comments and appreciate your availability.

    Blessings,
    Love in Christ,
    Laura

    • Thanks, Laura.

      I understood what you meant. I was just making the point that God’s sovereignty in those kinds of details doesn’t mean that he caused America’s leaders to say those things – however, Jonathan Cahn says that God inspired them (literally) to do that. So, in one sense, it could be suggested that it really wasn’t even their personal defiance at all.

      If you would like to contact me through an email address rather than through this comment section, feel free to do so: djames@biblicalintegrity.org

      Dave

  40. And this leads us back around to God’s sovereignty vs. man’s responsibility. This is exhausting, but stretching.

    Thanks, Dave. I even thought about looking for a private email of yours to correspond and I may go that route in the future. I just thought the open “debate” was healthy for others to read but, if I need to discuss more personal matters (or regarding questions/comments about particular ministries/people), I will be sure to keep those private.

    Have a great day!

    Love in Christ,
    Laura

  41. I did not call you a fool, only to those who refuse to believe that 9/11 is completely tied into our sinking economy… Anyway, I wasn’t just talking to you Dave, but to anyone who read my reply. I apologize for the Greek logic comment but I believe that to be at the heart of what is holding people back from seeing truth. Everyone tries to find logic and reasoning to everything. I don’t know why judgment didn’t happen and after Roe V Wade to be honest with you? But judgement is happening now and all the signs are their. Sin can only go on for so long with God. Just like any other nation, we have had multiple chances to turn from our wicked ways. As followers of Christ we must be aware of Gods judgment when it is at our door step. I am sorry if you felt personally attacked. I hope that you can accept my apology. I pray that Jesus Christ continues to keep his hand upon you. Thank you for being civil, I will work on backing off my fiery rhetoric.

    • Thanks, Barry. Apology accepted – no question.

      Actually, yours is far from the level of some things that have been publicly said about me and others who have expressed concerns about The Harbinger. I decided early on when I started dealing with The Harbinger that I wouldn’t take things personally because I knew I was heading into a storm.

      And thank you for the closing kind words.

      Back to the topic: I don’t know if anyone would think that 9/11 didn’t affect the economy. That’s just a historical reality. What is not so clear is that God has begun judging the nation. As I said before, He very well could be, but we need to be very, very careful about assigning God’s direct actions to particular events. When we say that God did something He didn’t do, that is little different from saying that God said things He didn’t say – which is one way to identify false prophets. So, caution is the key. If God hasn’t told us He did something specifically, we’re guessing. We could be right – but it’s still speculation.

      Once we start down that road of declaring things like this apart from God’s revelation, where does it stop? Was Pearl Harbor God’s judgment? The first World Trade Center bombing? Hurricane Katrina? The tornadoes in the Midwest last year? The drought this year?

      Sin can only go on for so long – that is true – but in some cases He has allowed it to continue for hundreds and hundreds of year. A caller on Brannon Howse’s program that I was on today said that America is the most wicked nation that has ever existed. Things are really, really bad, no doubt – but anyone who has lived or traveled outside the U.S. very much at all – or who is familiar with world history knows that we are hardly the worst. What about Soviet Russia? What about the Babylonians? The Canaanites? India? (I have taught at a seminary in India where just outside the property is a Hindu temple that is shaped like a phallus. It is a wicked, wicked place.) What about the Netherlands with drugs and open sex trade. What about Thailand with rampant gay and child prostitution?

      Another problem is that even if God is presently judging America, Cahn has not demonstrated that with The Harbinger. And even though he is right about the need for repentance, he makes his case by radically mishandling the Word of God, selectively using historical facts and making extremely misleading statements. The ends do not justify the means he has employed. That is not the way God does things.

      We will probably end up disagreeing about some of this, but I would encourage you to consider the evidence against The Harbinger. I think you will find it is extremely compelling.

      Dave

  42. I heard the second installment on Brannon Howse’s show this morning and it sparked A LOT of questions but I will start with just one comment and/or question. I hope I understood everything correctly but you can correct me if I didn’t. But, I have to say, that man who called in and said that he believes America is Babylon… I was just shaking my head. I’ve heard that stated before too but reject that.

    I also want to re-iterate that I will keep this purely doctrinal. If I have any comments or questions about ministries or persons themselves, I will send you a private email to discuss those matters but I appreciate your leaving up my past comments up because that DID make a difference in my past viewpoint. I’m just now working on whether or not to change my views. I also prefer to have an “open debate” so others can read our discussion if they choose.

    My first comment, and the only one for now since your answer back may answer some of my other questions, is about when you were talking about the greater context of Isaiah’s prophecy and how so much more needs to be fulfilled in order for the events of 9/11 and afterwards to be a true fulfillment of what Isaiah predicted in his time. I’m reminded of when Jesus was in the synagogue and read Isaiah 61:1-2. As you will recall, when reading that prophecy, He stopped in mid-sentence. He did not fulfill the “greater context” of Isaiah 61 in His lifetime in setting up the kingdom at THAT time. I think we can both agree that THAT is yet future. Jonathan did not specify any specific prophecies that would be fulfilled now that I am aware of. For instance, he didn’t put himself out there to state that on the next Shemitah, the stock market would tumble 666 points or anything like that… and when I read the book, I was looking to see if he would stick his neck out there and state something like that, but he didn’t. It was absent which caused me to believe that he does NOT believe he’s an actual prophet because “actions speak louder than words.” Could you please address all of this?

    I noticed you’re not getting too many “bites” so I’m happy to be the one to bend your ear and “pick your brain”. I have thoroughly enjoyed our interaction!

    Blessings,
    Laura

    • Hi Laura,

      You’re right about the guy who said America is Babylon. It’s not only unfortunate that people mistakenly hold these kinds of positions, but perhaps even more so, they way they hold them.

      I’ve often told my students, “It’s not enough to be right. We have to be right in the right way or we’re wrong.”

      You’re also right about the number of “bites” – but it’s interesting, I’ve seen a large spike in visitors over the last couple of days. I think there were over 200 yesterday. For some reason, though, I don’t generate a lot of comments. Perhaps it’s because a lot of those who come to the ABI agree with my views. Interesting, though.

      Good questions and points concerning Isaiah.

      I think perhaps you’re mixing apples and oranges, though, when discussing Jesus’ handling of the passage in Isaiah. Clearly not all of Isaiah 9 has been fulfilled. The “child will be born” has been fulfilled. The establishment of His kingdom is obviously yet future. So, that isn’t an issue. Cahn and I would agree on that.

      The problem, however, as I pointed out to Brannon, is that Isaiah 9:10 can’t be understood to any truly biblical degree apart from the preceding verses. The way Cahn handles it would be like him discussing the way Jesus handles the Isaiah passage, but failing to mention the significance of where and why He stopped. There just is no way to understand what was happening when Jesus did this.

      Another significant issue is that in The Harbinger, the distinct impression is that Israel was *permanently* destroyed by God’s judgment – because the book moves from Israel being destroyed and then jumps to America and her impending destruction – with no mention of the promise of their future restoration in Isaiah 9:6-7 and no mention of modern-day Israel anywhere in the book. This is an astounding and terribly problematic omission because even the judgments of Gentile nations will be at the hand of Jesus upon his return. Yet, neither Jesus’ resurrection nor his second coming are mentioned anywhere in the book. You simply cannot bring a biblical message of judgment and a call for repentance without those things. Of course, Cahn can’t talk about everything possible – but these specific omissions are egregious.

      It is true that Cahn has not prophesied specifically what will happen in the future in any detail – but that doesn’t make him any less a “prophet.” Old Testament prophets did not primarily talk about events which would happen at some time in the distant future. The vast majority of what they did was to bring a message from God concerning what was happening at that moment and in the immediate future if they did not repent. Furthermore, he is revealing a mystery by giving an interpretation and understanding of a biblical passage that God has revealed to him, that no one has ever seen before. In this sense, Cahn has definitely placed himself in the role of a prophet – and millions of people have been told that is exactly what he is doing by men like Jim Bakker, Pat Robertson, Sid Roth, Perry Stone – and any number of other men who are *false prophets* themselves. And although he has had many opportunities to kindly offer a clarification or correction, he has significantly not done so. If I were being interviewed by one of these men and they suggested I was a prophet, I would have immediately and firmly denied that. This is a *huge* problem.

      We’re not talking about just a few minor points of disagreement. We’re talking about monumentally significant issues regarding handling the Word of God correctly and being honest about historical events. And what’s more, he has led millions of people down this same dangerous road. This is a major, major issue.

      Hope this helps, some.

      Dave

  43. There were some “heavy” things there and I think I will take a step back to think/pray about them before answering your responses… unlike before. Your answers have already led me to ask other questions, that’s for sure, but I want to fully understand what you are communicating by having the time to go through it more carefully before I do. I have to leave shortly and I don’t want to do this in a pinch. But I’ll be back to respond.

    Blessings,
    Laura

    • Take your time. It’s never a good idea to make significant changes in viewpoint too quickly and without careful consideration, even if you think you might be wrong. Otherwise you will end up bouncing around and being confused – which is never a good thing.

      I will be going out to The Berean Call annual conference in Oregon tomorrow and returning on Monday. They have over 500 registered this year – and this will be sort of an official public launch of my book. Tom McMahon has given me one of his two scheduled sessions to discuss biblical discernment with The Harbinger as a “case study.”

      I will still have internet access, but may not be able to respond as quickly for a few days.

      Dave

  44. Thank you. I appreciate that and agree with not being continually tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine. And God knows my heart – that I always want to be on the side of truth and not just side with personalities.

    My son started school today as well and that always brings on new challenges so my attention will probably be very divided in the coming days but that doesn’t mean I want to stop any discussion. I will do what I can, when I can and I did have a thought while I was out about something you said in that last post and, had I just posted something back right away, I probably would have forgotten that point altogether so I do like to take my time.

    Blessings,
    Laura

  45. I’ve just read through ALL the information and comments – all I can say is WHEW! and WOW!
    I’m a Christian bookseller, it’s been my observation (over the past 20+ yrs) that when a “Christian” book soars quickly to the top of the ‘secular’ charts, some questioning and research is needed to flush out the reason…(almost) every time the Biblical/Scriptual content of said book is either twisted, lacking, or both and people are being led .. shall I say ‘astray’ by false ‘teaching’ and misinterpretation of Scripture. I’m often amazed when my “well grounded” Christian friends are more absorbed by these books than they are of God’s Word. It’s almost like they are being blindly led down a path that leads to misbelief to what they were previously taught! I’m no scholar and I won’t attempt to quote scripture, but Christians need to use the God given gift of discernment when it comes to what one fills their heart and mind with. I know God’s Word tells us in the last days believers will be led astray….do you think that is happening?
    I haven’t read Harbinger – YET; not sure I want to waste my time on it, but I have been studying Isaiah along with J Vernon McGee’s commentary. Although he does indicate there are lessons for us Americans in Isaiah, he doesn’t say anything that those scriptures apply to America.
    One friend was impressed over sycamore & Cedar tree …in George Washington’s (or some gov. building) yard and how that ties the scripture to America.
    I just don’t like placing books in the store that are not Truthful and Edifying! I want books that will ground Christians in God’s Word, not confuse them. Thank you for your work in keeping integrity in our publishing! I just knew I’d find an unbiased review of the book on the www! Thanks again. Joanne

    • Hi Joanne,

      Thanks for your comments and for making the effort to do the extra necessary research.

      Yes, you are right, there is an issue in the area of discernment as never before. Some have said they’ve never seen anything like this issue with The Harbinger in their lifetimes. Unfortunately, a number of ministry leaders who would normally be among the first to raise an alarm about a book like this have embraced and vigorously promoted the book.

      I don’t know if you have looked at the ABI home page, yet, but this is part of and connects to my next blog article in this series, announcing the release of my book: The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction? (223 pages) – published by The Berean Call (Dave Hunt & T.A. McMahon).

      The initial digital print run is now back at their warehouse – with a second one possible prior to actually getting the first offset print run due to expected demand. They believe that there is the potential for this book to begin to make a significant difference – and we are praying that it will make some of the biggest difference among those who have read and currently embraced The Harbinger. The Harbinger is an illusion – and I demonstrate that by dealing with every major issue in the book, including all 9 “harbingers” individually.

      They are already set up to take orders and give wholesale pricing. They say this is the fastest they have ever published any title because of what they believe is its importance.

      Since I have your email address, I will also send you the last two ABI updates that I sent out on Monday and Tuesday after T.A. McMahon and I were interviewed on Worldview Radio by Brannon Howse – 2 hours each day.

      I think you will find those broadcasts interesting and worth the time to listen.

      By the way, I have written my book with the goal of allowing someone who reads it will not have to read The Harbinger to fairly and accurately understand Jonathan Cahn’s book.

      I and Jimmy DeYoung were among the first to break this story the first week of The Harbinger’s release the week of January 1, 2012. We have done a number of interviews and have been following it steadily. You can also find an hour and fifteen minute discussion between Cahn and myself, moderated by Jimmy DeYoung – on the http://www.prophecytoday.com website.

      I have read The Harbinger completely through three times and much of it four, five, six times or more. In addition I spent hundreds of hours researching and writing – It is very extensively documented with over 250 footnotes.

      Again, thank you for your interest.

      In His Care,
      Dave

  46. You did get one more “bite” but from someone who strongly agreed with you. I don’t mind being one who puts myself out there as one who disagrees with you, at least at this point, because I’m sure it’s helpful to those who not only take your position… in order to understand OUR thought processes but for those who have liked the book but have a hard time communicating about doctrinal issues, especially with someone of your caliber. I can tell you, it has not been an easy ride.

    I had to read your comments over and over again to get the full flavor of what you are saying and I THINK I understand what you are getting at, for the most part. I also decided to take the time to re-listen to an exposition of all of Isaiah 9 (that led into part of chapter 10) that my former pastor did a few years ago. Just for the record, my former pastor is VERY conservative and would probably want Jonathan’s book burned, just knowing how much he’s against ALL THINGS even REMOTELY charismatic, but he said some interesting things about Isaiah 9 that I will discuss below.

    When you said, “The way Cahn handles it would be like him discussing the way Jesus handles the Isaiah passage, but failing to mention the significance of where and why he stopped.” I pondered that and pondered that, looked at the scripture and prayed for God to “help me” understand. With what I’m about to say, you may think that God didn’t answer that prayer at all and, maybe He didn’t, maybe I’m just fooling myself. However, it seems to me that Jonathan’s message stopped at Isaiah 9:13 because his book is a call to repentance. So there’s your “where” and “why”. Even though he didn’t say those words directly in the book (that I can remember… I only read a library copy and do not own the book so I can’t check it again), it’s spelled out pretty clearly, in my opinion.

    Jonathan’s speaking of Israel’s “permanent” destruction was the furthest thing from my mind while reading the book. His audience would, or at least SHOULD, know and understand that, since Israel is currently a nation on the map, that Israel was restored to her land unless they’ve been living under a rock… so it appeared to me like there was no need. I wonder if he just meant that the land was so devastated that it would “appear” at the time as a permanent judgment? I don’t want to really speculate about that as I would have to read it again but, I can tell you personally, it NEVER crossed my mind. One of my favorite subjects is Biblical prophecy and I know that all nations will be judged at Christ’s second coming so I read it with that already in place. I couldn’t find anything in Jonathan’s book that would contradict that teaching even though it wasn’t specifically mentioned. His book is NOT an end-time book. It’s a book about judgment of ONE nation only and when the tribulation period comes, it will affect the whole world, not just one nation.

    Ok – The “prophet” issue. You said, ‘It is true that Cahn has not prophesied specifically what will happen in the future in any detail – but that doesn’t make him any less a “prophet.”’ However, Deuteronomy 18:21-22 (which I know will post when you place your cursor on that so people can read it – I LOVE THAT FEATURE, BY THE WAY! KUDOS!) specifically instructs us as to how we are to tell a true prophet from a false one and it appears to me that it is REQUIRED that they make a FUTURE prediction. That passage specifically tells us to watch for very specific events… whether or not what he predicts takes place or comes true as the give-away or the indicator. That, as you admitted, does not apply to Jonathan Cahn. So I must conclude that he is NOT a prophet nor claims to be one regardless of what anyone else says about him. He just doesn’t meet the requirements as far as I can tell. Others may call him that (and I TRULY wish he would correct that… as this is the MOST disturbing thing about this whole thing to me and I cannot defend him here) but that doesn’t mean he is one or even considers himself one.

    And last but certainly not least, you said, “Furthermore, he is revealing a mystery by giving an interpretation and understanding of a biblical passage that God has revealed to him, that no one has ever seen before.” What was SO interesting to me is how much my former pastor kept referring back to America and the condition of the church today in his exposition of Isaiah 9:8-10:4. It was ASTOUNDING to me and he did this study a few years ago, long before I ever even heard of Jonathan Cahn. So there WERE others who saw a correlation, just not at the extent that Jonathan did. I didn’t expect him to speak of America and the church so much. And, just for the record, he DID expound the hermaneutics as it pertained to Israel FIRST and FOREMOST. But he also mentioned that judgment always gets more and more severe whether it’s regarding a nation or individual which doesn’t contradict Jonathan’s teaching.

    I still have more questions but this is MORE than enough for now.

    Blessings,
    Laura

    • Hi Laura,

      Got a few minutes in the Chicago airport.

      RE Cahn and Isaiah 9: I don’t have a particular problem with him stopping at 9:13. The problem is that you can’t understand 9:10 apart from beginning in at least verse 6. 9:6-7 lay the foundation for 9:10. Verses 6 and 7 forms perhaps the single most important Messianic passage in the Bible – and Cahn is the one who brings up Messiah in Chapter 21. Verses 6-7 provide and unconditional promise to the nation of Israel that they will still participate in Messiah’s kingdom no matter what happens – and then the Lord, through Isaiah, tells them of their impending judgment. Messiah is their hope not just before the judgment if they repent, but also AFTER the judgment, they will ultimately be restored. Cahn has given a radically incomplete message.

      Furthermore, Cahn talks about judgment throughout the entire book, but he doesn’t mention even once that it is Messiah himself who will execute the judgment when he returns.

      Beyond that, he only speaks of judgment in very generic terms, while the Bible is very specific about the nature of the coming judgments associated with the return of Messiah (which he also fails to mention.)

      What is far worse though, is that even though he goes into great detail about sin and judgment, he does not clearly tell the reader what the solution is. He presents a radically deficient Gospel. He never once mentions Jesus’ resurrection in the entire book, which Paul says in Romans 10:9 must be believed in order to be saved. Neither does he once use “faith” or “believe” in connection with the gospel. He never mentions that Jesus died on a cross for our sins. He refers to a cross, but just what looked like a cross at Ground Zero – but he never once mentions the cross of Christ. These things alone are sufficient for any Bible-believer to walk away from The Harbinger.

      He also never uses the word “Christian” and he never once mentions the church – which is Christ’s body and bride.

      These are disastrous omissions.

      And yes, his book is an end-time book. That’s the way everyone sees it – that this is America’s last chance.

      You’re right – he doesn’t claim to be a prophet, but he has let others call him a prophet over and over – without correction. Millions of Americans think he is a prophet – without correcting them. And if you listen carefully to the interviews where he is asked if he considers himself a prophet – he has never once said that he is not. He will only say, I have never called myself a prophet. When he has been asked pointedly about what others have said he has never once said they are wrong about this. He is being manifestly disingenuous.

      It is also clear from the book that Nouriel Kaplan really is Jonathan Cahn. I have the multiple parallels outlined in my book. And Kaplan is anointed to be the next prophet to the nation and he is to get out his message through a fictional novel.

      And finally, there is a difference between seeing parallels between the falls of any nation. There are undoubtedly parallels. But that is not at all what he is saying. He says specifically that the Isaiah 9:10 Effect CAUSED everything to happen. Again, the denials are disingenuous.

      I would encourage you to read through my book and consider it as a whole before we spend a lot more time discussing this back and forth because I deal with all of this in extensive detail – and it forms a unified argument.

      Hope this helps.
      Dave

  47. Chicago! Was born and raised there and all my family’s back there.

    As far as whether or not Jonathan should have included the references of Isaiah 9:6-7 and the judgment throughout the book, I will leave him to answer those charges cause I’m sure, at some point, he’ll read your book and deal with it then and, like I said before, I will be listening/reading.

    When it came to the chapter entitled “Eternity”, I have to admit, I read very quickly through that part because I was much more interested in the harbingers themselves and already knew what the content would be about so I can’t really speak on that. I would have to get the book again to re-read it.

    I must disagree that EVERYONE sees this as an end-time book. I certainly didn’t and neither did my sister. Even if this WAS America’s last chance, America is STILL only one nation. It might be arrogant for us to think that because OUR nation falls, it’s automatically the end. It may be, but you cannot assume that.

    I have listened carefully to the interviews, I listened to each interview at least 2 or 3 times and some I listened to 9 or 10 times and I am NOT exaggerating. I wanted to understand ALL positions and I even typed things out that the opposition said so I could read it over and over in order to get a full grasp. There were a couple of things said where I assumed one thing was being communicated but soon realized I was wrong. I corrected my thinking and it was in THEIR favor… and this was one who is AGAINST Jonathan Cahn and his book so I truly am trying to be fair. And I noticed that others misinterpreted what I also originally misunderstood who blogged about it on the internet (not anyone from a discernment ministry, just some unknown blogger out there). So, that’s just to set the record straight. And I have noticed Jonathan’s words – took careful note of them and I would also like to hear the words “I am NOT a prophet” myself, no doubt. So I see your point there. However, as I stated before, I don’t know how to “test” him because he made no actual future predictions.

    Please remember that I do NOT have a copy of the book in front of me since I don’t own one so I can’t verify this but I remember reading that Nouriel’s REAL first name in the book was Baruch (I think that was his name) and Baruch, as Jonathan explained, was Isaiah’s (the prophet) right hand man, not the prophet himself and THIS is who Jonathan was claiming to be… merely a representative of Isaiah who was required to get the message out, not Isaiah, the prophet, HIMSELF. This distinction makes all the difference in the world. If he was claiming to be THE prophet, red flags would have immediately gone off in my head but I will double check that when I get the book again and I will be sure to read your book once it’s available at the library as well.

    Blessings,
    Laura

    • (Arrived safely in Bend, Oregon)

      Concerning Nouriel being Baruch: That is true – but I think what perhaps you missed is that The Prophet and Nouriel have to be taken as a unit – because it is only as a composite that they reflect Jonathan Cahn fully.

      On the one hand, The Prophet does anoint Nouriel as the NEXT prophet who will write a fictional novel – so when Nouriel writes his book he will ALREADY BE a prophet.

      On the other hand, Jonathan Cahn parallels The Prophet himself because both are the SOURCE of a message that has never been given before.

      So, Jonathan Cahn is fulfilling the role of a prophet on BOTH counts – as both The Prophet and Kaplan.

      It is just impossible to get around this.

      Concerning someone being a prophet:
      As I mentioned before, foretelling the future was the smaller aspect of the ministry of most prophets. For example, Jesus is a prophet after the manner of Moses – and very little of what Moses said was future prophetic – but it was prophetic.

      A prophet is not just someone who foresees the future, he is a spokesman for God in the present. Even though we generally think of “prophesying” as dealing with the future, that is far more narrow than the biblical definition.

      To prophesy is nothing more than to speak an oracle from God – sometimes it has to do with the future, sometimes the present and sometimes the present.

      The test involving the future is just one of three tests for a prophet. One test is miracles (which very few prophets did), one test is future prophecy (which was not the primary purpose) and the third is that what they say is consistent with prior revelation. It is on the third test that Cahn fails because he mishandles Isaiah 9:10, a passage in Jeremiah and a passage in Ezekiel. He also fails to mention the resurrection or the second coming in connection with judgment. Can you imagine any biblical post-resurrection prophet failing to mention or even acknowledge the resurrection in the context of proclaiming the gospel.

      So, you have to issues – one is whether or not the office of prophet even exists. If it does not, the Cahn and the others are wrong about him being a prophet.

      If the office of prophet does exist, he fails the test of being a prophet from God.

      Either way, this is an insurmountable problem.

      Again, hope this helps as you think through this.
      Dave

  48. Glad you made it safely to Oregon.

    I feel I need to make one correction from my last post. Baruch was JEREMIAH’s scribe, not Isaiah’s (my sister re-read the section and corrected me). I’m a little weird with correcting those minor details even though it doesn’t really change the meaning cause Jeremiah was still a prophet of God.

    Anyway, you did it again, Dave! You threw me for a loop! I am going to have to re-read that section of the book for me to see that Kaplan was anointed as the next PROPHET, and that it wasn’t just a reference to him becoming a new believer with God’s Holy Spirit now living in him and that God had, as He does for every believer, “prepared good works for him” to do (as stated in Ephesians 2:10). I know how overboard the charismatics go with the word “anointed” so we almost try and stay completely away from that word but in our pneumatology study, we learned all about the various emblems of the Holy Spirit – one being oil – so I didn’t think anything of the “anointing” especially since Kaplan had just become a believer. We are also known as “kings and priests” unto God even in this NT grace age so, again, I saw no problem when I first read the book.

    Thank you for your definition on “prophets” which leads me to a question. When you referred to testing them by whether or not what they say is consistent with prior revelation, does that mean that all teachers who misuse God’s revelation and come up with unbiblical teachings can be classified as false PROPHETS since they are expounding the Word or just simply false teachers? I know that the office of prophet is closed today but the Bible talks about many “false prophets” in the last days.

    Of course, my pastor always stresses that when we present the gospel to make sure we present the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. I have to tell you, though, that I got VERY LITTLE information when I got saved. I already had the basics (as I’m sure most do in this country although I have been surprised in more recent days when seeing some of those “man on the street” interviews) as I was raised in a religious home but I got saved on this phrase, “It’s something about asking God into you!” That was it! It was a third-party presentation and I prayed and went on a search after that and God led me. I’m not saying Jonathan couldn’t have done a better job of it but I am proof that God can definitely use just a small portion of His Word or even a paraphrase to guide.

    Anyway, it does give me some food for thought so, thanks.

    Blessings,
    Laura

    • Hi Laura,

      I need to clarify – it is true that The Harbinger doesn’t say that he was anointed to be the next prophet explicitly. So, I don’t want to be misleading.

      He was anointed with oil to continue the prophet’s work and take his message – to communicate “the message itself – the prophetic word, the mysteries.” (p. 247)

      The problem is that it has become a matter of semantics. You’re right, he was to be like Baruch as a scribe. Mr. Cahn has been very careful about what he says in the book as he is in his interviews. It is the same situation as it is with the covenant with America.

      The following is a section from my book that illustrates the problems these issues represent:

      ________ (From The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction?)
      Whatever may true about Cahn’s actual views concerning an American covenant, such use of The Harbinger to support the uniquely cultic view of Anglo-Israelism presents the author with a serious problem. The significance of this can be seen in the following illustration of the situation.

      What if an evangelical had written an article or book about the Lord Jesus Christ such that Mormon theologians began to appeal to it specifically for support of an important point in their heretical Christology? This would be a disastrous development.

      Even if the author had been misunderstood he would be obligated to clear this up as soon as possible. He would need to remove or reword the problem statements so that Mormons could not use them in this way. This would not be difficult to accomplish, but would require pulling current copies from the market and the printing of a second edition. It would also require a public acknowledgment of the problem with the way he had chosen to express his views.

      What would not be sufficient would be for the author to simply make a few public statements to attempt to clarify his views and leave it at that if the original editions of the book remained on the market. Neither would it be sufficient to begin trying to publicly engage those who were using his work to support their false views about Christ. The problem would be further compounded if during interviews the author made ambiguous statements that confused the situation even more. This perfectly illustrates a major flaw of The Harbinger.
      ___________

      Going back to the matter of Cahn being a prophet (not just in the mind of others): Remember, The Prophet is a fictional character – he doesn’t exist. Neither was there a real person who gave Cahn this message. Therefore the prophetic word – this message came from him alone. That means that not only Kaplan represents Cahn, but that The Prophet ALSO represents Cahn. There’s just no way around this.

      Dave

  49. Thanks. My sister reminded me that Kaplan was of the priestly line and it would not have been odd for him to be anointed for that alone but, since he was to bring a prophetic message, this is a major problem.

    So I guess that means NO chance of him clarifying anything on anymore broadcasts!

    At this point, I’m done! It will be interesting to see what unfolds in the coming weeks/months and what I said to someone in a discernment ministry a couple weeks back is… time will tell regarding Jonathan Cahn and The Harbinger… and it will. I will be watching and listening for further developments and will be sure to read your book.

    Love in Christ,
    Laura

  50. There is a danger is claiming that certain passages only apply to a single situation. For example, 2 Chron. 7:14. Do you claim that it only applies to Jews? Also, John 15. Do you assume that it only applies to gentile believers that lived during the time of Jesus walking on this earth? Take the book of Hebrews. Do you believe it only applies to believing Jews?
    I find a compelling message of repentance in Cahn’s work–even if he presents salvation issues a little differently than would gentiles trained in our seminaries. Can we not include him in our sanctuary of believers in Christ?

    • Milton,

      Thank you for your comments and questions.

      First, I want to be clear that I have not, nor will cast aspersions or speculate concerning Mr. Cahn’s personal relationship with the Lord. Neither have I said anything that has questioned that he is a true, born again believer in Christ. I have always assumed that he is.

      There very definitely are certain passages that apply to a single situation or specific time period in God’s program. For example, in Genesis 6, God warned of a worldwide flood. However, that passage can only be applied directly to those who lived before the Flood because He has promised to never destroy the world by flood again. And yet that promise can be applied to every generation. So, as always, the context determines how any given passage can be legitimately applied whether directly to that single situation – or if there are timeless principles that can be more broadly applied.

      Yes, 2 Chron. 7:14 does only apply directly to the nation of Israel because they are God’s chosen people who have a land with geographical boundaries. No other nation has that position and although Christians are also the people of God, we do not have a land. The healing of the land in the verse is God’s physical restoration of the land and its people after He had judged them through the Babylonians. The more appropriate passages to apply to the United States are found in Jonah, where God deals with a Gentile nation. And of course, to the degree that there are believers in a nation, God may well choose to bless in any number of ways. At the same time, there are timeless principles in 2 Chron. 7:14 which are rooted in the character of God.

      Once again, the context always determines how and to what degree any passage can be applied. Many contain some sort of timeless truth – and that is always applicable. The same is true of John 15 and Hebrews. No one is suggesting that there are not applications in those portions of Scripture.

      However, this is not what Cahn is suggesting concerning Isaiah 9:10. He is saying there is a direct application that includes falling bricks, hewn stone, a sycamore, a cedar – these thing will happen when God judges a nation because it is a pattern. But it isn’t a pattern – it happened one time. We have no way of knowing that the consequences of God’s judgment will include these things. And even if it were a pattern, what has happened since 9/11 in the U.S. does not align with Isaiah 9:10 in any way.

      I go into much more detail in my book – particularly concerning the gospel, which is not to be found in The Harbinger. How could a post-resurrection prophet fail to mention the resurrection of Jesus Christ in a presentation of the gospel – and yet The Prophet in The Harbinger is silent. Yes, there is a generic call to repentance – but Cahn never explains how to do that, and it does talk extensively about the judgment of God, but offers only a generic solution that does not include essential elements of the gospel – including any mention of faith or belief. That is not a biblical gospel.

      I hope this helps to clear up any misunderstanding.

      Dave

  51. Johnathan Cahn had his reasons for writing The Harbinger but I believe that God has allowed this big story to be published for HIS own purposes – to wake people up. I am not going to wait until I’m a Bible expert to discern everything I read. I get the “jist” of this and it has stirred me to tell others that God needs to be invited back into everything in our government and lives. I’m glad there are those willing to fact check this book -but I believe there is a simple message in this and that should be appreciated by naysayers.

    • Hi Lynn,

      Thanks for taking time to comment.

      A couple of observations:

      1. God has and does use whatever He chooses to accomplish His purposes – so I have no doubt that He has used The Harbinger to point people to His message. However, as I’ve pointed out before, a demon-possessed girl in Philippi (Acts 16) followed Paul throughout the city, telling people to listen to his message – until he put a stop to it after three days. The overwhelming multitude of problems with The Harbinger make it clear that Cahn’s message did not originate with God – even though He may be using it.

      2. We all have a responsibility to be Bereans (Acts 17) and we must all discern everything we read. This is not an option and is not the exclusive purview of Bible experts.

      3. The basic idea that Americans need to turn to the Lord is a message that needs to be proclaimed without a doubt. However, America is not and has never been a theocracy and it is highly questionable whether the God of the Bible has ever been an integral part of the American government. The only hope is for individuals to turn to the Lord in faith – and He must have a place in our lives.

      4. The message of repentance in the face of impending judgment is simple – and every “naysayer” I’ve heard and read (and there have been very many) all agree with this – and do appreciate it. However, a major problem that I point out in my book, is that although the problem and the need for repentance is clearly presented – the solution is not clearly presented. The gospel is not clearly presented in The Harbinger at all. The resurrection of Christ is not mentioned at all – and never once is “faith” or “believe” used to explain how to appropriate the gospel.

  52. Hello David

    I appreciate that you have done a lot of study on The Harbinger. However, you failed to convince me on the major point of The Harbinger, that Daschle and Edwards both quoted Isaiah 9:10. Whether Mr. Cahn presents his interpretation as speculation or fact is not the point: they both said it. Your argument about Caiaphas does not convince me. It sounds like you don’t want to believe The Harbinger’s arguments, is that true?

    My main question is why you designed your book cover to look the same as The Harbinger. It is perfectly legitimate to question The Harbinger, and in fact I want to hear more questions like yours before I come to a conclusion. But many people may be confused when they see your book and buy it instead of The Harbinger. The intentional copy of The Harbinger’s design detracts from your credibility. I hope that you can change this soon.

    • Hi Jim,

      Thank you for taking the time to read my article and comment. I appreciate your thoughts.

      Concerning the cover: Obviously my book is about The Harbinger and deals with it in very great detail – so visually connecting them together just makes sense from one perspective. The designer went to very great lengths to retain the visual “feel” but to also make significant changes. The fact is that virtually every element is different and often significantly.

      Our intention was not to confuse people – and the truth is it never crossed my mind that people my buy my book by mistake. Perhaps that was an oversight on our part – but of the many people who saw the cover before it was published who have no vested interest whatsoever ever mentioned this concern. Neither has anyone who has reviewed or purchased my book mentioned this. I still personally don’t think there is any possibility of confusing the two – especially with the “caution tape” that has the “Fact or Fiction” portion of the title on it. It is also very clear from other things on the cover and on the back – all over the place – that this is about The Harbinger.

      The similarility was addressed in an article on WND after the reporter called me to ask about this – and when he asked that question it was the first I ever considered the confusion. Yes, we wanted a connection, but not confusion. We were asked to change the cover by The Harbinger’s publisher, which we immediately did – because, again, deception or confusion was not our motivation. Therefore the new design does make the connection, although for sure there can be no confusion. There may be a few places where the old cover can still be seen (because that is just the archiving nature of the internet), but we have replaced it wherever we can and have sent it to others so they can also make changes, which we hope they will.

      Concerning Daschle and Edwards: If they wanted to bring comfort to the nation from the Bible concerning buildings that had been knocked down, just how many verses in the Bible could they have used. The fact is not that God inspired them to choose Isaiah 9:10 – but rather it is just about the only verse they could possibly have chosen because there just aren’t any others (or at least very, very few). The idea that this verse was chosen out of over 30,000 verses to prove that it was God who orchestrated it is a classic example of using statistics to prove whatever one wants to prove. (Also, I wouldn’t call this *the* major point of The Harbinger – there are others that are at least as significant.)

      I fully understand that my response to any given “harbinger” may be more or less convincing – and I do realize that some arguments are stronger than others. So, I don’t expect someone to just take my word based on one or two of the points – which is obviously why I wrote an entire book. I have only done exactly what Jonathan Cahn has done – and that is he amassed a great deal of information so that taken together the reader is convinced by the preponderance of evidence.

      In the same way, I have amassed a great deal of research and information to demonstrate that the evidence does not support his theories. So, the question is not whether someone believes I have been completely persuasive on a given point – but what does one do with the information as a whole? In fact, if there is doubt about even one of The Harbingers – or the Shemitah – then the whole theory collapses. I think I have conclusively shown that there is more than just reasonable doubt about one or two of “the harbingers.” I have heard from a number of those who have read both books who have said that I have completely dismantled The Harbinger beyond a shadow of a doubt.

      I hope you are able to take the time to read my book which goes into far greater detail.

      Again, thank you for your comments.

      I hope my response has been helpful.

      God bless.

      Dave

  53. Dave,

    I just got done reading the posts, not all in their entirety, but about 80%. Why only 80%? Because as I was reading them my heart was breaking.

    It is breaking because of all the misguided people out there that would rather believe books written by man, then the only book written by God. We all have difficulty understanding the times we live, but people seem to always look outside the Word of God for information. Could it be they just don’t believe that God’s Word is for today?

    Everyone is caught up in getting America “back to where it was”???? Where was it? No where better than today. The only difference is that today we are closer to the end then we were 200 years ago.

    What people are calling judgment is actually sin. When Adam sinned it affected the Whole World. From people to weather, it affected the whole world. God allows governments to affect living to judge us, right? If then when someone kills another, they are sentenced to death. Is that not exacting God’s judgment? I am always open to correction because until He shouts for me, I remain in a sinful flesh and mind that takes daily doses of God’s Word and pray on my knees with constant confession to keep at bay.

    The Harbinger is just another piece of evidence that there is an increase in false teachers as Jesus said there would be. The dispensation posts on the other blog article made me feel worse. I am not a Bible Scholar like yourself, but even I can see that God has a plan for His People, Israel, and that He has a plan for His Church, which Jesus is the Bridegroom. God is the husband of Israel just as His Word states. Most people I have noticed do not take the Bible as literal and therefore, as I used to, are easily misdirected.

    I will pray for those who have posted that are off the mark so to speak. I hope their views do not cause issue with their walk with the Lord. But Jesus was very adamant about how His Word is to be used. Everyone is so bent on returning America……returning to what? Our Mason roots, slavery? Jefferson’s use of his slaves in an ungodly manner? It is evident that people when they say return America, they don’t really know what they are saying.

    This country was not founded on God as most people think. If that were the case, we would not have document evidence of the contrary. No country(Kingdom), according to the Bible was set up by God, only allowed. Why would we want to “Restore America”? Our goal should be up not here on earth. If Christians really read their Bibles, they would see that our efforts to restore anything is Vanity. The Bible says as much. America is not going to be here forever so what are we working so hard to restore? I know you have read the last book of the Bible, and you also know Jesus said “I told you afore time”. But it seems to me that not many have read this, nor want to because, perhaps they really don’t believe the entire Word of God, and only want to select what makes them feel good. Vanity, all is Vanity.

    I for one may sound like a crazy person (whatever the definition of that is), but my allegiance is to Jesus and His Kingdom to come. Jesus told me to “render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s, but I render unto God what is His. What is His? My WORSHIP , my OBEDIENCE, my PRAISE and to GLORIFY HIM. Not restore something He one day will make pass away.

    So tired of the rhetoric and disagreements, and the attacks on those, like yourself, who want to correct an error or warn someone so they don’t error. People forget God’s Word all the time. They forget that satan comes as an angel of light, they he deceives, and very subtlety. When we are being Bereans, we need to use the Whole Word of God, not just sections that point to our way of thinking. The ways of Man.

    I am going to pray for each and everyone who has posted on your site that God open the eyes to their understanding before they are taken completely down the wrong path.

    I do not begin to forget that I error too at times, but I do not for one minute think that I know it all and that the ministries I follow know it all. But if they error, with the authority of God’s Word, I will remind them. Ezekiel reminded God that using man’s excrement was unlawful. I don not begin to think that I don’t sin, that I don’t make mistakes, I do. Jesus made a way for Christians to keep getting it right until He shouts for us. Confession, OBEDIENCE, pray, and The Word of God.

    I am sad that someone may have mistakenly called you a fool, but you are a Watchman on the Wall Mr. Dave, and I will remind you that you are called to expose false teachers to us. You have a very important ministry in our time. My fear is that few will heed your warning, but as the Bible states, God is sovereign and His Will will be done. You sir, just keep the faith, stay humble (like that would be a problem, one of the most humble people I know), and I know you stay close to the Lord.

    If anyone has read The Harbinger, you must read Dave’s book to get what God’s Word says about Cahn’s book. Books like The Harbinger is backed by satan like many other false things we see and hear each day, to deceive us. Prayerfully consider it because if the eyes of your understanding are open, the scripture will say it all. What we do, I have too at one time; we want our interpretation of God’s Word to be what we need at any given moment. What takes faith is to realize that there will be some parts of God’s Word that we will not like, but it is just at that time our Faith should kick in. I can say with all correctness, and with a heavy heart, that God will throw my son into the pit of hell if he does not repent and give his life to Jesus. A lump forms in my throat every time I think of it. When I pray for him, I remind God of just how much Praise and Glory my son’s salvation will bring Him. I remind Him that His will is “for all to come to repentance” because I know that His Word says that He chooses who draws nigh to Jesus. Someone has to be at the Great White Throne Judgment. My first thought is NO, not my son. But then I remember what I read in God’s Word, and say, maybe my son. What makes him so special that if he reject Jesus he wouldn’t wind up there? Nothing. My love for my son will not keep him from hell. He says I badger him, so be it. The truth is what it is. God never said we had to like the truth, only live it. The Harbinger does not tell us to look at the sin in our lives, it says that as a country as a whole need to repent. Well we are individuals in this country, we should start there. Repentance in this country will never happen. Energy and time is wasted on such causes. Christians should know where we are in God’s time line. I am not saying we shouldn’t pray for our country, and the leaders. I am saying that we should not focus too much time on something that will not be here forever. Our eyes should be looking up.

    Please Brothers and Sisters in Christ; the only wake up we need is to pray that Christians find restoration in God. That we have the courage to share Jesus with our friends, families and neighbors. That we stop taking God’s Word out of context for our own reasons. Stop looking for tickled ears and face the truth. The Harbinger only serves to scare and distract. Discernment is a gift from God, use it.

    Thank you Dave for allowing me to say what is in my heart, a heart that was once wicked, but through the cleansing blood of Jesus is renewed. I hope all who read this take it in the context it was written and that is to keep our hearts and minds on the Truth, and if they can’t see the errors in Cahn’s book, to get yours so they can see scripture used in a truthful manner. If you love someone who isn’t saved, don’t feed them the feel better gospel, feed them the God will put you in hell gospel if you don’t repent and turn to Jesus. Tough love was never tougher. But then if you read the Word of God, God is tough on us because He loves us and He is Holy, we are not. Not yet. May God Bless you all.
    Cherie

  54. Dr. James,
    Can you clarify for your readers if you are a Cessationist? If you answer in the affirmative, then how do you explain the new birth succession throughout history? Are you Dispensationalist? If so, then when did God cease imparting the gifts? Where can you provide the evidence to this effect?
    Also, if the Scriptures such as Isaiah 9:10 cannot be applied to another point in history, as you claim, then how can you justify the use of specific historical prophecies to New Testament events.
    Where does it say in the Scriptures that the gifts ceased with the Apostolic Second Temple Era?

    • Hi Jose,

      Thank you for your questions.

      If you take a look at the in-depth doctrinal statement on the ABI website, you will be able to see both our positions, as well as the supporting scriptural references.

      Yes, I hold to cessationism and dispensational theology. I have spent many years carefully studying and teaching on this topic and have developed a 10-hour course on the theology of signs and wonders from Genesis to Revelation. As with many theological issues, including the Trinity, just because a specific theological truth is not exhaustively stated in just one verse does not mean that it isn’t biblical. I believe an examination of all the relevant biblical passages lead very clearly to the conclusion that God phased out the giving of the sign gifts of the Spirit with the end of the apostolic era. Obviously, developing and proving this to the satisfaction of some is not possible in a book-length treatment, let alone in a couple of paragraphs.

      I am not suggesting that Isaiah 9:10 cannot be applied to another point in history – the principles can certainly be applied in any number of situations. That is not the question. This issue is whether this is a mystery that God has hidden as in now revealing to be about America when there is no textual reason or anywhere else in Scripture that indicates this is true. The Bible just does not teach what Cahn claims because it cannot be found in the text. If the text itself doesn’t inform both our interpretation and application, then what does? The very simple issue is that if it isn’t in the Bible, someone made it up. Isaiah 9:10 does not represent a pattern of judgment – it represents what God happened in a specific situation with the Northern Kingdom. As far as other prophecies are concerned, we recognize their future application in the NT because God has told us very explicitly.

      Thanks, again, for writing.
      Dave

  55. Hello Dr. James,
    In your response to Jose you said, “As with many theological issues, including the Trinity, just because a specific theological truth is not exhaustively stated in just one verse does not mean that it isn’t biblical. I believe an examination of all the relevant biblical passages lead very clearly to the conclusion that God phased out the giving of the sign gifts of the Spirit with the end of the apostolic era”

    The issue is not that Cessasionism may be correct because its opposite is not explicitly mentioned in Scripture. In fact, that all the Gifts of the Spirit, once given are given for all time to God’s people (including the so called “sign gifts”), IS EXPLICITLY mentioned in the Bible. Romans 11:29 says that God’s gifts are irrevocable. In the Old Testament, Deuteronomy 29:29 tells us that once God reveals Himself to his people (Heb “galah”) in a certain way then that which is revealed “belongs to us and our children FOREVER, that we may do all the Words of His law”. And there are many other scriptures to these effects that the cessationist position has to do all kinds of calisthenics to refute.

    Sure, anyone can say, “Well that’s your interpretation. I think of it differently”, but what I am sticking with is the most plenary (face value) interpretation.

    Therefore you can’t say, “Well the Spirit only reveals Himself in these certain ways, but in these other ways he does not.” (i.e. He only reveals Himself through such gifts as Service, Teaching, Wisdom, etc. but not in Healing, Prophecy, Miracles, Tongues, Interpretation of Tongues – or anything else deemed to be Supernatural – ok, “sign gifts”.) If that is going to be your stance then you find yourself in the awkward position of declaring every healing in a church, every tongue ever uttered since the early church, every “Prophetic Word” given, every miraculous event as “NOT OF GOD”. And if they are not of God then whom do you attribute their power to? (Because we’ve all witnessed healing and other “sign gifts”. ) …… Right, if they are not of God and they ARE “supernatural sign gifts”, then they must be of Satan. So now you find yourself in the most awkward position of accusing every manifestation of a “sign gift” in any part of the World, given at any time, as being from Satan.

    You know what God calls it when we attribute His power to the devil? Blasphemy!

    But of course if your whole approach to Scripture is “God doesn’t move in these ways anymore” then it doesn’t surprise me in the least that you have big issues with Jonathan Cahn… and for that matter, ANYONE who moves in Supernatural Anointing. But then again, if Jesus were here you’d have a problem with Him too.

    • David,

      Unfortunately, you have engaged in classic straw-man argumentation. You create a straw-man that is a vastly distorted caricature of my views and then attacked that rather than deal with what I actually believe and why I believe it – which you don’t even know in the case of most of the things you said.

      Your post has much speculation and accusation, but nothing indicating that you realize your either / or reductionistic understanding of the issues is not the only possible way it could be.

      I will be dealing with this topic in a future book that I have been preparing to write for several years.

      I have been at this a long time. I was saved through a holiness Pentecostal preacher and have been thinking, studying and praying through this for almost 30 years – and after teaching about it for almost 15 years, I have been asked and challenged about every possible objection – biblical, theological and logical. (I never, ever use the “that’s just your interpretation argument” – which is no argument at all.)

      I won’t be able to get into this further on this particular comment thread because that is not what this is about. My views on cessationism have absolutely nothing to do with my critique of The Harbinger because this isn’t an issue in Cahn’s book. I know non-cessationists who completely agree with my critique of The Harbinger.

      Dave

  56. The important thing about this book is even though it might be fiction, the application of how the Lord God dealt with the people he choose will always have a parallel application ending in the same results.

    For those that believe in God and his will there is meaning. To those who have no respect for a higher intellectual being or authority, there is no meaning because they have no basis for an application. They have developed their own set of “Pragmatic” morals that justify their own intents.

    I learned a long time ago that you “neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.” Matt 7:6. There is no need to try to discuss your faith in the bible with a non-believer. There is no basis for discussion, only the sarcasm of an elitist attitude to vilify you and your position.

    “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” Prov. 14:12. “That which hath been is now; and that which is to be hath already been; and God requireth that which is past.” Eccl. 3:15.

    Mr. Cahn has a right to express his opinion as to the interpretation of the scripture. It is up to us to recognize the application. “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:” 2 Tim. 3:16.

  57. Thank you for the encouragement.

    By God’s grace I determined that I would not take any attacks about this personally.

    I consider each one for whatever merit it might have and whether the Lord would want me to learn something through the criticisms.

    I am continually evaluating my position and my arguments to make sure I’m not the one who is missing the truth.

    Whenever I go back and read what I have written and revisit the problems with The Harbinger, I remained persuaded in my heart that I have stood for the truth on this.

    That is all I can do – along with being very careful to respond correctly, without malice and with grace.

    Dave

  58. Dave, what do you think of the person who says that this book is only fiction and can be enjoyed merely as a fiction book? For instance, it is similar in type as the Left Behind series of books. A combo of some fact, some prophecy and some fiction.

    • In comparison the Left Behind series, it’s in a completely different category.

      The Left Behind series is fiction, using a biblical framework.

      The Harbinger is fact (according to the author), using a fictional framework.

      This results in a significant difference.

      In my book (Fact or Fiction), I deal with the entire book in great detail – and was written to put into the hands of someone who thinks The Harbinger is a good book – it’s not.

      I also wrote it such that someone does not have to have read The Harbinger first as I quote it extensively and try to be fair to the author by giving plenty of context.

      Hope this helps.

  59. Dave, Does Hebrews 10:26-27 apply to people who know the truth, but continue in sin? The Harbinger being wrong on doctrine, would this scripture apply to the author as well as anyone who follows its message?

    I know you don’t believe a saved person can lose their salvation, but would this scripture indicate otherwise, or am I taking it out of context?

    Is it a sin to make money off the fears of people, instead of sharing the Gospel with them? When is it time to just walk away from those who won’t listen to correction or to the truth? Do you think that true Bible believing, Bible living Christians will persecuted by those claiming to be Christian?

    Thanks.

    • This is one of five warning passages in Hebrews.

      The “we” is not “we believers” – it is a more generic all-inclusive “we.”

      We know that it can’t be talking about believers and the loss of salvation because if it were, then that would mean that the first time anyone sinned willfully they would be lost forever – one strike and you’re out. (This is the same problem with Hebrews 6, although that is also used by those who teach you can lose your salvation.)

      Anyone who says they have never willfully sinned after they have been saved is either a liar or deluded.

      What’s more, there would be no way to be saved again because there is no more sacrifice (again, the same as in chapter 6). And actually all five warning passages are essentially the same warning.

      Hebrews was the final revelation to the Jews prior to the destruction of the temple in 70 A.D. to prepare them for the end of the Levitical sacrifical system – and to instead look to the Messiah, Jesus Christ as the final perfect sacrifice.

      With all the animal sacrifices, you could just bring another sacrifice to atone for sin – and the sacrifices could be brought endlessly because they didn’t deal with sin with finality.

      However, Jesus’ sacrifice was different – it was once-for-all, there are no more sacrifices available. The animal sacrifices are no longer valid and his one sacrifice is the only way of atonement and redemption.

      The problem the author is facing is that there were some Jews who were in the midst of trying to decide if they were going to convert to Christianity after hearing the gospel – or go back to the Law of Moses. However, the author’s argument is that once they have heard the gospel of Jesus Christ and his ultimate sacrifice – if they reject it – there is no other option. You can’t reject Jesus’ sacrifice and just say, “I will just go back to the Mosaic sacrifices” – therefore, with no other way out, the only thing that can be expected is fiery judgment because Jesus’ sacrifice is the only way.

      So, this warning isn’t to believers – but to Jews who are torn between remaining Jews – or are going to give up their Mosaic system in favor of the gospel.

      So, this was a very unique situations in the early church that is not really duplicated today – although certainly principles can be applied once we understand them correctly.

      I’m not going to pass judgment on those who are involved with the marketing of The Harbinger – their motives are between them and the Lord.

      The goal of all discipline is restoration – so even sending away is for the long-term purpose of bringing them back when they change – in that sense, we never give up.

      Many, many have become believers who would have been known the day before their salvation as “the least likely to ever be saved.” That is the love and grace of God – but if they ultimately die in a state of rejecting – they have consigned themselves to the fiery judgment that awaits them.

      Christians have always been persecuted by some who claim to be Christian – but who are not.

  60. 2 comments:
    UnknownOctober 1, 2012 10:37 PM
    I have personally spoken with Jonathan Cahn and exchanged emails with him. I have spent hundreds of hours in research and writing – extensively documenting and supporting every statement I make – with many quotes coming directly from The Harbinger.

    My book is an exhaustive in-depth study of The Harbingers and the attendant issues – such that it needs to be carefully considered in any ongoing support of The Harbinger. I have tried to be as gracious and kind as I can – but have clearly demonstrated that Cahn’s book is an illusion. It is absolutely not what it appears to be on the surface.

    Unless someone is familiar with the dozens of problems and issues I raise and deal with in The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction? – any discussion for or against will only be superficial at best – unless someone else has also researched this to any significant depth.

    Both the Kindle and paperback versions are available on Amazon.com.

    There are also some important editorial and reader reviews that have been posted.

    David James
    The Alliance for Biblical Integrity

    Reply

    The PepsterOctober 8, 2012 5:10 PM

    Thank you, Dr. James for your kind reply. First, you did not contact Jonathan Cahh prior to your book’s release to interview him precisely about the contents of his book.

    What’s more, you rushed to get your own work published when his book became a best seller.
    You were quick to judge his book before you spoke with him, and what you wrote in it was before you and he spoke, evidence of that is Brannon Howse’s interview with Jimmy DeYoung earlier in the year, where Dr. DeYoung alluded to you and your work in that interview and went on to trash Cahn’s book without having read it.

    I personally e-mailed Brannon Howse about this, and he never responded to my e-mail. Was it because the content of my e-mail contained Dr. DeYoung’s review before he had read the book?
    When Howse interviewed Dr. DeYoung, you and Cahn had not spoken, so your claim that you interviewed him extensively for your book is either not true, or you’ve mistaken the dates somewhere. I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt and say you might’ve mistaken the dates.

    I have a copy of your book, I am in the process of reviewing it myself.
    Your entire premise is incorrect about Cahn because you apply so many assumptions about him and presume about what he is writing that the meaning and intent of what he is writing is twisted and bent beyond recognition.

    What’s more, your entire analsysis in your book is based upon a flawed theological base – Cessationism, and any theology stemming from Cessationism is based upon faulty hermeneutics because it denies the very nature of God and His unchangeability.

    All of these I will address as the Lord wills in a study of my own which I am currently writing as I review your work, and the various other critics of Cahn’s work.

    It appears that the critics of The Harbinger have become obsessed in recent months with it, and to this end have launched an all out campaign against it.
    You and your other colleagues wrongfully accuse Rabbi Cahn of dividing the Body of Christ with his book, but it is you who first cast aspersions at Cahn and his book, before giving the man a chance to speak.

    Jimmy DeYoung had not even read the book before he called Cahn a “false teacher,” and “false prophet,” Eric Douma, in what is one of the most incredible leaps of verbal gymnastics and assucmptions, makes all sorts of false charges against Cahn, again all based upon his own prejudiced Cessationist theology.

    Perhaps the most grievous offense agianst Cahn is the false witnesses that have risen up against him and against his book.

    It is a very sad thing indeed sir, that you and others have in your obsession with The Harbinger abandoned the original mission of The Berean Call when it was founded in exposing cults and false doctrines, and have in recent times focuses your very narrow theological beam on your fellow Christians, who by the grace of God, walk before the Lord as you do, as imperfect servants who (like yourselves) are learning from the One to whom we all must give an account, and I assure you sir, you and your colleagues will have to account for this one day before your Maker.

    You are not judge, jury, and executioner before the Lord, you are merely servants and your theology is lacking. YOu have much learning, but what you have in human intellect and scholasticism, you lack in spiritual insight and understanding.
    It will become self-evident with time.

    • Jose,

      I think if you will read my preface again you will see that I began looking into The Harbinger just days after its release the first week in January and discussed the book personally and on air with Jimmy DeYoung that first week after I had read the book through. I personally spoke with Jonathan Cahn in a moderated discussion on April 6, which was aired a few days later – before I had published my article and almost 3 months prior to the release of my book.

      I think it is unfortunate that your understanding of the timeline and entire situation is mistaken at several points, while taking the occasion suggest that I am lying about these, although you stopped short of a direct accusation by suggesting that perhaps my memory of this was incorrect. I assure you it is not and can easily be documented.

      I’m sure we will have to agree to disagree about The Harbinger, about how we have addressed its many problems that are misleading hundreds of thousands, as well as the matter of cessationism.

      Since you don’t know me, you do not know anything about what I have gone through over the last 25+ years to come to my conclusions – beginning with my salvation in 1984 through the ministry of a Pentecostal preacher, and the countless hours I have spent studying the Word of God, studying the history of the matter, researching the developments since the end of the 19th century, earnestly praying and seeking the Lord’s wisdom and guidance over this entire time. We have reached different conclusions, but not because I do not take this, the Word of God and the Lord himself very seriously. I find it unfortunate that you have judged me on this matter in the same way you have accused me of dealing with Jonathan Cahn – but with far, far less knowledge of me and the situation.

      Since this is a moderated blog, I hope that the fact that I approved your very harsh comments for public posting at least demonstrates that I am acting in good faith and am open to criticism – even ridicule.

      I trust that any future comments will take these things into account.

      Dave

  61. (Note from Dave James: I have deleted the content of this post at the commenter’s own request.)

  62. Sir, you are out of line here. I personally listened LIVE to the ON Air conversation Dave James had with Jonathan Cahn in April of this year moderated by Dr. DeYoung. Mr. James has been too kind to this false teacher. If nothing else how dare he use the Word of God as fiction as he claims. God’s Word is not for us to use for profit or gain in any way let alone use it to confuse saved and unsaved alike. Thank God for people like Mr. James, Dr. DeYoung and Brannon Howse to expose these demons in Christian skin.

    Wow, “false teacher,” “demons in Christian skin?” Wow. And there’s no point in commenting on the misunderstanding about what is fiction and how it is used as this person obviously wouldn’t get the point.

    I understand that you allowed this post, Dave, as you allowed Jose’s, and I agree that both are out of bounds, but Cherie’s is over the top.

    I think you are a sincere man who does want to serve the Lord and tries to be fair. But I have never seen such a wide divide between assessments of a book as the Harbinger has been getting. I continue to analyze the arguments in your book at my blog along with those of other critics and I keep being astonished at the thinking on your side of this. I’ve done my best to see where you’re coming from and all I can conclude is that you are amazingly wrong — about the topics I’ve covered so far anyway — and I still don’t know why for sure although I’ve offered my explanations from time to time.

    I suppose there’s no point in rehashing it.

    Faith

    • Faith,

      Cherie wrote to me this morning requesting that her post be deleted. She was upset and didn’t think it through before hitting “send.” It happens.

      I have read, re-read, prayed, considered, thought through, and evaluated this a lot. The Lord knows my heart, so I’m not going to try to do defend myself – but each time I come away even more persuaded that we got it right. At the same time, I have considered all of your observations and comments – and, to be very honest, much of the time I have a difficult time seeing how you’re making a cogent argument.

      For some reason, there is a huge disconnect between godly people who normally agree (and probably still do) on most things. I know you’re sincere and believe your arguments and logic are right on target, while you have difficulty seeing how anyone could think mine are. I and others have exactly the same situation concerning yours and others who support The Harbinger.

      I’ve been disappointed to see how WND has been reporting recent developments since the Understanding the Times Conference. Although I understand WND’s “schtick” – it feels quite disturbing to draw specific attention to the standing ovations that Jonathan Cahn received – making him sound more like a rock-star than a prophet and man of God, and then yesterday’s article which attributes “slick marketing” to part of The Harbinger’s success, as if that’s a good thing.

      I think we are watching and will continue to witness this spin further out of control – to the point that many or most of the more discerning supporters begin seeing the layers peel back and begin to recognize exactly what others have been seeing. I think it is just a matter of time.

      But, for now, you’re right – no point in rehashing the details at the moment. I don’t think there are any further arguments either of us can make that will cause an “aha” moment.

      Dave

  63. Dear David,

    Thank you so much truly for your gracious reply/ies to my own posts and what I have written on yours – I mean this from my heart, it is important for you and your readers to know this. In the area of discernment and apologetics it is often difficult to separate an assessment of a teaching, doctrine, or opinion while keeping oneself from appearing to be personal, that is; from writing in such a manner that will allow for a “fair and balanced” (no pun intended) assessment of another person’s writing that does not appear to be of a personal nature.

    Having said that, I must clarify for the sakes of your readers and for those who read my own posts on this topic; there is much evidence on the web, and I can cite the names here of the sources, but will leave it for a post on my own website I will be writing soon; of people who have called Jonathan Cahn a Theosophist, a Kabbalist, an Existentialist, and a Mystic, although you have not made this charge in your book from what I’ve been able to read thus far.

    I have written several posts about your book, and responding to others like T.A. McMahon, Jimmy DeYoung, Brannon Howse, and some others, and although by your own assessment, I have been harsh, I will break down sentence by sentence what these men have written and said about Rabbi Cahn’s book and about Rabbi Cahn, and will allow the reader to determine for themselves if I have been harsh.

    Again, it is difficult in the area of Apologetics and Discernment not to appear to be personal when in fact one is critiquing another’s writings, and sometimes the very core of what they fundamentally believe. This is why I believe I’ve struck a chord here, because it indicts statements and reviews and brings those who made them before the light where everyone can determine for themselves whether or not these statements are warranted, because all things are laid bare by the light of God’s Word and those who serve Him in spirit and in truth.

    I write to you with all sincerity brother, I am very concerned for you and for those who are your associates, just as you say you are about Cahn and his book. It is understandable that you would be concerned over his book, but consider this; how will you in your theology react when God’s two witnesses appear on the scene of human history (if we live to see this in our lifetime)? Because according to your theology, these things ceased with the closing of the New Testament Cannon – a theological supposition that is as dangerous and destructive as hyper Pentecostalism is with its acceptance of anything that is miraculous without first testing the spirits to see if they are from God, as we are commanded to do.

    Let me explain; there are four schools of Cessationism and they are the following, I do this for yours and my readership who may not know what these are:

    Concentric Cessationists believe that the miraculous gifts have indeed ceased in the mainstream church and evangelized areas, but appear in unreached areas as an aid to spreading the Gospel (Luther and Calvin, though they were somewhat inconsistent in this position).

    Classical Cessationists assert that the “sign gifts” such as prophecy, healing and speaking in tongues ceased with the apostles and the finishing of the canon of Scripture. They only served as launching pads for the spreading of the Gospel; as affirmations of God’s revelation. However, these Cessationists do believe that God still occasionally does miracles today, such as healings or divine guidance, so long as these “miracles” do not accredit new doctrine or add to the New Testament canon. Richard Gaffin, John F. MacArthur and Daniel B. Wallace are perhaps the best-known classical Cessationists.

    Full Cessationists argue that along with no miraculous gifts, there are also no miracles performed by God today. This argument, of course, turns on one’s understanding of the term, “miracle.” B. B. Warfield, J. Gresham Machen, F.N. Lee.

    Consistent Cessationists believe that not only were the miraculous gifts only for the establishment of the first-century church, but the so-called fivefold ministry found in Eph. 4 was also a transitional institution (i.e., There are no more apostles or prophets, but also no more pastors, teachers, or evangelists).

    (From A Twisted Crown of Thorns Website which cites its origin at Monergism, a Reform site.)

    I don’t know which one of these you fall into, and of course, you may even find yourself in disagreement with some of your own colleagues in this respect, because one may hold to one school of thought whereas another holds to another school of thought. I do not fall into any of these and I am not a Pentecostal, nor am I a Charismatic, though because of my beliefs in the gifts and calling of God, some may call me that – I’ve been called a lot of things in my lifetime, and I’ve learned that the only important thing is what the Lord Himself will call me on that day that I stand before Him. I do not ascribe to the so-called New Apostolic Reformation, though I do know enough about it at this juncture to throw it entirely out without first thoroughly examining its claims – its proponents, and what it’s all about – in light of Scripture.

    I have spent thirty-two years in the study of Judaism and Christianity, (should’ve gone to seminary as you did, but I am self-taught), and during that period have been working on a concise history of what is today called Messianic Judaism and its various permutations and differences. I am currently teaching this at Beth Israel as part of a multi-part series.

    I am also at work on my own study of the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the accompanying signs and wonders which followed up until the destruction of the temple and Jerusalem. But, I’ve noticed that in your book there is a section where you criticize Cahn for quoting extra-Biblical passages such as from the Talmud, the Zohar, and may I assume also from Josephus’ writings, the writings of the Church Fathers?

    In your book, you question their use as historical narratives, on the basis that they are not part of the cannon of Scripture and therefore cannot be accepted a “authoritative” for that reason. If one were to follow that reasoning, then no historical work outside of the Bible is of any value, and therefore cannot be used when studying the historical aspects of the Holy Bible.

    Then others like F.F. Bruce, Josh MacDowell, Francis Schaeffer, and yes; Jonathan Cahn’s use of these in Apologetics is to be dismissed en toto. This is untenable, because it is precisely the extra-Biblical narratives which the effective apologist employs in support of the historicity and reliability of the Holy Bible. Think it through.

    No true apologist advocates that extra-Biblical works such as The Talmud, The Zohar, the Rabbinic, Midrashic, and Haggadic writings of the rabbis and the works of Philo of Alexandria, or Flavius Josephus, or the writings of the Church Fathers be placed on an equal footing with Holy Writ, and I believe you realize that; it must go without saying. And I can tell you with full knowledge and authority on this, neither does Jonathan Cahn. It is simply not true.

    As a believer I agree with you in Sola Scriptura; the Word of God alone as our sole authority, but as a historian, to infer, as you do in your book, that to cite an extra-Biblical source for use as evidence is to equate that source and give it the authority that only Scripture possesses; is a simplistic method of over-generalization, and conclusions based upon an incorrect understanding of what Cahn has written. Before you retort, I will explain to you why this is so, and I will cite just one example. Citing all of the examples from our book requires a volume all its own and I am at work on that as I write this, so I will only cite the following example for now, and that should suffice.

    Let us begin by examining own writing in this regard straight from your book specifically on pages 198-200, where you dismiss Cahn’s use of the Talmud, the Zohar, and other rabbinic writings, and equate his use of both as promoting classical Jewish mysticism – and I quote here directly from your book:

    “Cahn appears to uncritically accept the writings of the Talmud concerning this miracle (the story of the seven branch Menorah’s miraculous lighting for eight days with just one day’s worth of oil), even though there is no scriptural support, and presents it to his congregation as absolute fact. In this eight-minute segment of the message, he also refers to other miracles associated with the temple service in 30 A.D.

    “Perhaps such miracles did occur, but without scriptural support, there is no way to know for certain. At best, this account makes for an interesting historical footnote, but it cannot be treated as factual in the way that Cahn has. There is no way to know what really happened and there is no way that Cahn way to know that this was not simply a Jewish myth.

    “Unfortunately, this treatment of the rabbinic material is consistent with Cahn’s frequent practice of ‘discovering and revealing’ hidden mysteries – be it in the Bible or in extrabiblical (sic) Jewish writings like the Talmud or even in mystical Kabbalistic writings like the Zohar. Although it seems unlikely that Cahn would subscribe to classic Jewish mysticism, as a messianic rabbi he certainly seems to have developed his own variation.

    “Have untold numbers of Christians unwittingly accepted mystical Jewish thought? And after having done so, how many pastors, teachers, and other ministry leaders have preached messages connected to the claims of The Harbinger and have publicly endorsed, promoted, and defended the book and Jonathan Cahn? How many have shared this book and the documentary with unbelieving family and friends? How many millions of dollars have gone into keeping The Harbinger on so many best-seller lists, including at or near the top of the theology category on Amazon.com for weeks? Something seems to be very wrong.”

    The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction? , page 200, the Berean Call, 2012

    This is the problem of the letter versus the spirit of what is written. Am I to assume that we should not accept for example, a report about something as being less than reliable because its occurrence is not found in the pages of Scripture? As a historian, I find a good many facts outside of the Bible when reading history, and the finest Evangelical writers when teaching Biblical History have often used extra-Biblical sources to teach their classes. But I need not remind you of that, you’ve been to seminary, and you know what I am referring to here.

    But how, you can equate as you do with Cahn above, that his use of “the rabbinic material is consistent with Cahn’s frequent practice of ‘discovering and revealing’ hidden mysteries” and claim as you do in your own words that “as a messianic rabbi he certainly seems to have developed his own variation,” is unwarranted as are all of your other claims about his book. I will point this out as the Lord wills in my own study of what you’ve written.

    In conclusion to what I’ve written above; I would say that you’ve made a conscientious effort to over-examine another’s work and have concluded by making much to do about nothing. Others who have followed in your wake, have taken the ball, and have developed their own arguments to support you, but when all is said and done, all of you reflect ironically the national conscious reaction to God that The Harbinger warns about when Israel reacted two thousand five hundred years ago to His warning then, and most of our countrymen are reacting in the same manner today; with skepticism and defiance.

    It is understandable such a behavior and reaction from those who do not know Christ, and who see everything pertaining to the Scriptures and God as beyond their comprehension, because such things are mysteries hidden from them and such things are spiritually discerned through God’s Word by the indwelling Holy Spirit of God in the believer who is given insight into these mysteries, these signs if you will. And yes, the Word of God does speak of signs and wonders and false signs and wonders in the days preceding Christ’s return.

    Can we before an unbelieving and skeptical age bring before this people – the unregenerate and unbelieving – a mixed message and expect them to even understand what we are saying?

    To them they are mysteries, and as such this is what Cahn calls them, but to us who are the chosen and called by God through Christ, they are spiritually discerned and laid bare for us to heed or not to heed. The ball is in our park. And herein lies the rub; your book and TBC, and Apprising Ministries, World View Weekend, et all; have taken out the baby with the bathwater, and have totally missed the warning.

    You’ve missed it and stand against it; a sign to be spoken against in defiance of it; because you oppose both the message and the one who wrote it. It is fitting that this would happen this way, because it will not be charged that there was no religious opposition when God warned America. You’ve provided it, and to my utter dismay so has the Berean Call, a ministry that I have both loved and respected for years. It is most disheartening for me as one who has for many years been a fan of the Berean Call’s superlative work in Apologetics.

    Your opposition is based in large part by your own well-developed, but flawed metric in the use of Biblical Hermeneutics based upon Dispensational Theology (again, good for the organizing and study of Biblical History – I know I’ve used it on occasion – but poor in theology. I will go into that in my own study of your book). A sidebar here; I highly recommend Dr. Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum’s work Israelology: the Missing Link in Dispensational Theology, an excellent book (might put you to sleep though so drink lots of coffee). Dr. Fruchtenbaum is himself a Dispensationist, though I am not certain that he ascribes to a Cessationist Theological Viewpoint.

    David, I believe I’ve said much here. I thank you for the opportunity. For now, I must disagree with you. I highly respect your work, I commend you for it, but with regards to The Harbinger, as we shall see, Lord willing; you have totally missed the mark, though you will succeed in convincing a lot of people otherwise, and have already. This is part of the defiance that must take place. As it was with ancient Israel, we are ironically seeing the same through The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction? I am so sorry that you are front in center of it, because you too are a servant of the Most High God. I love you in Christ and hope someday, Lord willing; we will meet. It will be my honor and pleasure, though I hope it will be under different circumstances. I must return to my writing now. Maranatha.

    Yours for God’s kingdom, His righteousness, and His truth in Christ Jesus our Lord,

    • Jose,

      Obviously, there is no way to respond in detail to all that you have written. So, I will just touch on a couple of points.

      In general, you have engaged in straw man argumentation: You have mischaracterized what I have said or what you think I believe and then rebutted that. I would also rebut someone who held those views – but I do not.

      1. Use of extra-biblical material: Absolutely extra-biblical material can be a reference – including the Zohar as a hostile witness. So, I’m not sure why you and others have created a straw man regarding my views when the point I make in my book is not about any use of such material – but the suggestion in Cahn’s message on “The mystery of the skull” in which he says concerning part of the Zohar, “God just put it in there.” When he does that, he is arguing for inspiration by God of at least that part – which is exactly what he says about Daschle. This is the point of contention – and a legitimate one, whether or not someone agrees with me.

      2. I fully believe God can and does intervene in human affairs. I’m completely baffled as to why you have brought up the two witnesses twice. I fully believe that we will be entering a time of signs and wonders as Daniel’s 70th week plays out – as the world will once again be in an Old Testament-like era. But again, obviously, I don’t have either the time nor the inclination to develop in this forum a biblical theology of signs and wonders (although I am working on a book) and dispensational theology.

      3. I absolutely don’t disagree with the message of repentance in The Harbinger – or that America is in trouble and is either under or soon will be under God’s judgment. I have stated that extremely clearly in the book and on many other occasions – so I am completely baffled by how anyone could begin to suggest that I have dismissed the warnings in The Harbinger. I teach and preach on those things regularly.

      I agree that time will tell. (And I think we may be beginning to see some things happening to make this even more clear.)

      Dave

  64. A comment was made by Brannon Howse on his October 1st show that disturbed me greatly. He was talking about the fact that others, even Rabbi Cahn himself, has requested going back on Brannon’s program to clarify more misconceptions and Brannon ACTUALLY said the following and I quote, “When you go to reprint your book again, give us a chapter to express our concerns so we get equal time.”

    Now there was a day, not to long ago, when Brannon thought it was horrible that the government wanted to do this very same type of thing with conservative/Christian websites,. i.e. give an alternative view just off to the side, so why would he now change his views about this type of thing? I propose that – whatever spirit was controlling our governmental leaders to want to do this with websites is the same spirit that is currently controlling Brannon Howse and I, for one, am praying for him to see the light. This speaks volumes to me.

    I don’t know if you feel the same way about this Dave but, if not, I think you should correct Brannon on his views.

    • Laura,

      I think perhaps you are making more out of this than it is.

      As I recall, Brannon has already had Rabbi Cahn on the air twice. Beyond that, Rabbi Cahn has had well over 100 interviews and made his case to millions of people. He is hardly lacking venues. There are no new misconceptions and as far as I can tell, he has already addressed them at least once in more than one place. He is not saying anything new.

      So, all Brannon has done is request some equitable exposure in Cahn’s venue – which is his book. You really can’t be serious about comparing this to the government intrusion issue of the “Fairness Doctrine.” Surely you realize that you can’t begin to compare the two things that aren’t even remotely similar. This is quite a leap of logic.

      I don’t know exactly what you’re suggesting concerning the “spirit” controlling Brannon – but if you mean the obvious, then you’re venturing into a realm that is well beyond anything we have said concerning The Harbinger.

      Unfortunately, this is a consistently repeating pattern – we are criticized for what we have said with a level of rhetoric that is multiple times higher than what we’re being accused of in the same breath. I have been at a total loss to understand how our critics have not realized what they have been doing.

      As I said months ago, this has spun so far out of control that the underlying spiritual battle is on full display.

  65. Dear Dave,

    As I have made this observation before, and I do so here again, it will become evident as the wheat and the tares grow, whose works are those that will be consumed by fire, and whose works those will be that will endure.

    You have an obligation to defend your book., as Cahn his. I have no stake in this, but to serve Jesus Christ, and to admonish you and our colleagues to end this charade. You are doing damage to yourselves by it, inasmuch as you are bearing false witness against your own brother in Christ, and are giving others less gracious than yourselves grist for the mill. It doesn’t end there, where is the time dedicated to share the Gospel with a fallen humanity. My gosh man, don’t you realize how much time this circular argument can go?

    This is why I am returning to a thorough examination of your book, and I will publish my findings in due time, as the Lord wills. I am only very concerned over you and over others who are relentlessly engaged in this crusade.

    Now may the Lord Himself bring to light and make evident to everyone what needs to be revealed pertaining to all of this, let the works become evident, and may God’s truth prevail.

    I ask you a question brother, and pleaes do take this the wrong way, but are you are ready to ofer Jonathan Cahn a public apology if the day ever comes that you realize just how wrong you’ve been about him all along? If indeed you do discover that you’ve been wrong about him and his book all along?

    • Of course, Tom McMahon and I have agreed that we will do whatever necessary and appropriate.

      RE – others: As I note in my book, a number of godly men, who are strong Bible teachers and good theologians who read The Harbinger and came to identical conclusions BEFORE they heard any of my concerns.

      I doubt there are many, if any, books on the market that went through the vetting process that mine did – three theological readers, three different editors and eight endorsers – all of whom are good students of the Word of God and committed believers. At any point in the process I would have stopped on the advice of any of them. Most of them have no dog in the fig

      The evidence is completely in the open for anyone to look at both in my book and Rabbi Cahn’s. They both stand or fall on their own merits.

      My work is extensively researched and documented with over 250 footnotes. All of my work is open for anyone to consider. The only difference is that I spent more time researching more deeply than most would on their own – which is the very reason why many books are written in the first place – as a service to others.

      The Lord’s will be done.

  66. Dave,
    Sorry to ask this of you but I can’t find the articles about Jonathan Cahn at WND that you are referencing. I must be tired, can’t get the Search feature to turn them up for me. Could you please send me a link?
    Thanks,
    Faith

  67. Mr. James,
    Mr. Cahn’s book was great as far as I am concerned. I recall that Jesus often spoke in parables or used contrasting examples to bring spiritual messages to the masses of people. It caused them to seek meaning, which was very much His way in dealing with people. For example, did He literally mean that people should eat and drink His blood? John 6:54 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)
    54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life — that is, I will raise him up on the Last Day.
    So what did Jesus mean by saying “eating His flesh and drinking His blood to gain eternal life”?
    He’s using words to introduce a spiritual idea of the kingdom of heaven. Your argument with Mr. Cahn’s story falls short because you are battling words, instead of seeing the spiritual truths they convey. Mr. Cahn is using words to warn people of the impending judgment that we will receive, if we do not repent and turn to God. The same punishments the nation Israel received will be what we receive, as anyone who turns from God would. Your judgment of Mr. Cahn has made you blind to that simple truth. You’re fighting your own brother, my friend. Rather, you should be thankful that there are those that reach out to the masses. We don’t need an intellectual debate, we need to wake up and that is exactly what Mr. Cahn has helped people do. Once more, your battle is with intellectual ideas; Mr. Cahn is bringing Spiritual truth to life. Christians are supposed to have one foot on earth and one foot in heaven; you have both feet on the ground. – Janice

    • Janice,

      I appreciate your thoughts, but I think you have misunderstood my concerns.

      I have been teaching and preaching on these spiritual issues for over 25 years – 16 of them as a missionary in Eastern Europe. I have seen the Lord do amazing things.

      I don’t know if you have read my book (available in Kindle and paperback on Amazon.com), but I make it very clear that I agree completely with Rabbi Cahn’s assessment of the state of America and the need for repentance in the face of God’s impending judgment.

      I am not battling just words, I am dealing with handling the Word of God correctly and presenting historical events accurately. How we go about doing the Lord’s work is extremely important – and it must be done his way with honesty and integrity. As I show in my book, much of The Harbinger is fabricated, an illusion – to the point that it becomes misleading in it’s attempt to prove that the author really is revealing an ancient mystery.

      There is no mystery in the idea that God judges nations that set themselves against him and his people. What Cahn has done is not at all comparable to Jesus’ parables – because he says 90% of it is fact – which is not true of the parables. They are two completely different categories.

      I have given my life to proclaiming spiritual truth since the Lord saved me almost 30 years ago. That is my highest priority.

      Dave

  68. Thanks for the links, Dave.

    One of the articles quotes Tommy Ice:
    “How can anyone take a passage that is clearly addressed to Israel (Isa. 9:10) and one that has already been fulfilled in history for Israel and say that it also applies in some way to America? There is only a single meaning to any passage in the entire canon of Scripture.”

    This seems to be THE central point in all the criticisms of The Harbinger and I’ve got to say it hit me as strange when I first encountered it and it still does. In fact it hits me as plain absurd. It hits me as a completely alien thought, a “hermeneutical” principle that I NEVER heard before this argument got going. It took a while before I recognized at least that it’s shared by a certain school of theology, which apparently includes you and all the endorsers of your book. I have to suppose that this accounts for why everyone you asked to read The Harbinger had exactly the same response to it that you had, although I wouldn’t necessarily have expected that to be the case simply based on a shared theology — I just don’t have another explanation for it. And Dispensationalism seems to be the best blanket term for this school of thought, although maybe there’s a more accurate term, I don’t know.

    I don’t keep up with all the theological schools but you’d think I’d have been aware of one with as much influence as this one apparently has. But I wasn’t. I’ve ALWAYS understood that the Old Testament is to be applied to us, to America, to our time, and that’s how I read The Harbinger and how I think others who have no problem with it read it.

    From something you said a while back I gather you don’t think any of you are saying the OT can’t be applied to our time and yet over and over and over it SOUNDS like that, as in Ice’s statement above.

    So there seems to be a theological divide here that is acres wide and I didn’t know about it until I got into all this. It may not account for ALL the objections to The Harbinger but it’s certainly THE major one among your circle of critics. It’s GOT to account for this huge gap between the two camps on either side of The Harbinger although it’s puzzling that that should be the case.

    I’m not sure what I’m asking, but I want you to know just HOW puzzling this idea is to me and perhaps to others on my side of this issue. Perhaps you’ll have some insight?

    • Faith,

      I agree – everything is almost always theological – and things tend to come in theological packages.

      My general observation over the last 25-30 years that most people outside dispensationalism are only familiar with a caricature of dispensational theology, rather than interact with a dispensational theologian. The majority of evangelical schools across the U.S. – Bible institutes, Bible colleges, Bible universities and seminaries of the last 60-70 years have all been strongly dispensational. That has change somewhat over the last 15-20 years as Reformed Covenant theology has experienced a sort of renaissance.

      Reduced to the most fundamental divide, it has to do with consistently understanding the Word of God literally, including the prophetic passages (while of course recognizing figures of speech, symbolism, etc.) – and that Israel and the Church are two distinct groups in God’s program. Many books have been written on this, so I’m not going to get into a defense of it here.

      But, suffice it to say that:
      1. Interpretation – we understand the New Testament in light of the Old Testament, rather than interpret the Old Testament using the New Testament.
      2. Miracles – there are clear, identifiable periods of outbreaks of eras of miracles – but hundreds of years with no or few miracles is the overarching pattern. These would be the eras of Moses, Elijah and Elisha, Christ and the Apostles and Daniel’s 70th week, the Tribulation period.
      3. God is still actively involved with His creation – in history and in individual lives – including miraculous intervention. God can and does do unexpected things completely outside the way things normally go.
      4. The Old Testament is relevant and directly applicable in great detail in the life of every believer. However, some things are only indirectly applicable – which is why we no longer observe the dietary laws among many, many other things. There are many things about Isaiah 9 that can be understood and applied in every generation. There are also specific things that were specifically and exclusively to Israel – everyone agrees with that, as well – including the supporters of The Harbinger (America will not be attacked by Rezin). So, the difference is consistently handling the Word of God from Genesis through Revelation.

      Because things come in theological packages, and because as time goes by the outworking of those packages results in wider gulfs as people become more deeply entrenched in their positions – whether they be in the Reformed camp or the Word-Faith camp.

      However, this isn’t the only answer, because there are dispensationalists, Reformed and Charismatics on both sides of this discussion.

      I understand the problems – we’re coming at this with a different hermeneutic and theological framework. I believe that mine is the most consistent and you believe yours is. Some agree with me – some agree with you.

  69. I agree that Rabbi Cahn has had many venues with which to get his message out but it’s not like Brannon is muzzled. He dedicates whole shows to bashing Rabbi Cahn and The Harbinger as well as anyone who even remotely supports him. If you don’t see this suggestion of Brannon’s – to place the opposing view in Jonathan’s OWN book – as over the top, well, that speaks for itself. Could you imagine Rabbi Cahn suggesting a place in YOUR BOOK? I’m not talking about rebuttals he may write or programs he goes on to refute what has been written and/or said about him as he has every right to defend himself (as do you on this post) but I’m talking about your ACTUAL book? And you don’t see this as being in the same vein as the “fairness doctrine?” Really? You said that all Brannon wants to do is get some equitable exposure in Cahn’s venue but isn’t that the same as what our government wants… to get exposure in OUR venue… to penetrate it? How is this different exactly? You don’t see the parallel? I hope others can see right through this. I mean, why would anyone, in their right mind, do that? That would be nothing less than unstable, double-mindedness and if he actually did that, I would have to question Rabbi Cahn’s sanity.

    My jaw dropped to the floor when I heard Brannon make that statement so I couldn’t help but wonder who was controlling his thinking. All I know is that it is double-talk from the way he USED to talk and is very confusing. When you stated, “I don’t know exactly what you’re suggesting concerning the “spirit” controlling Brannon – but if you mean the obvious, then you’re venturing into a realm that is well beyond anything we have said concerning The Harbinger,” I had to agree – you have not said anything about this with regard to The Harbinger ITSELF but you sure have accused the author of promoting Jewish mysticism and, therefore, the occult. All of Chapter 17 in your book is dedicated to this but it is provably false. All you have to do is a little research of your own.

    • Laura,

      Please try to lighten up a little. Brannon’s statement was tongue-in-cheek as much as anything. No one seriously believes that would happen – as you yourself say.

      I think there is a more than a little over-the-top reaction going on here.

      Everything is in the public market place – and there are plenty of venues on both sides. Cahn owes Brannon nothing and Brannon owes him nothing more than he has been given.

      Beyond that, I have seen some of the correspondence and Cahn has attempted to use spiritual strong-arm, guilt-trip tactics to try to force his way onto more than one show. He has not done himself any favors by choosing that particular approach. No one who is thinking clearly would allow him to impose himself into these forums. It is unfortunate.

      BTW – I did do the research which is why chapter 17 is in my book in the first place – and it is well-documented. Fortunately, I downloaded that video before Cahn had it pulled from YouTube.

  70. Dave,

    Lighten up – that’s usually what one says when he’s been had and knows it. I’m sorry, Dave, but this is too serious for me to “lighten up.”

    Anyway, I think EVERYONE should see that video – The Zohar Speaks – and I hope Rabbi Cahn posts it back up the way it was and compare it with what’s in your book on page 197. Last I checked, you can still view the video the way it was on Berit Kjos’ website so, by all means go there and check it out. Your readers will see that you didn’t quote Jonathan fully at the end and it’s very clear when you listen to it as it changed the whole meaning. And this coming from someone who criticized Jonathan for not quoting the rest of Tom Daschle’s speech which changed NONE of the meaning.

    • I had not left the end of the quote off intentionally or for any reason.

      So, after you brought it up I sent the change to the editor and it should be in the current edition of my book.

      You’re reading way too much into this – because it doesn’t change the meaning at all. If there had been a chance it would have changed the meaning I would have included it to avoid exactly the charge you’re making. And I did this over and over throughout the book in order to be as fair as possible. If I missed three words that had the potential to gave the wrong impression out of over 200 pages, I think that is very good.

      The Lord knows my heart and it was never to stack the deck – but you’re free to believe what you will.

      Beyond that, I also added the point prior to the quote to indicate that he was using it as a “hostile witness.” It didn’t require me adding anything else because it just didn’t change the meaning. And, in fact, I agree that using a hostile witness is an effective apologetic tool. That is not my concern in the least.

      Unfortunately, you appear to be reading nefarious motives into what I have done, even though I have really done everything I can to demonstrate that I’m acting in good faith. At least until you decided to change posture and go on the attack rather than simply asking a couple of questions which would have cleared up everything. At that point, I simply didn’t respond.

      I think the fact that I allow your posts to come through at least demonstrates that I’m trying to be fair and honest.

      And I agree completely – everyone should see that video – as well as a number of others.

  71. Dave,

    I’m very happy to know you are changing your book to include those three words at the end of the quote which, I think, MOST would agree that it DOES change the meaning – but I think we should let each one decide for himself or herself….

    (This paragraph is geared to the readers): On “The Zohar Speaks” – Rabbi Cahn said “Listen to the rabbis” but then added the phrase “on that point” right after – which are the three words that David left out of his book. Rabbi Cahn was simply referring to Golgotha being the place to go for life – that’s it – nothing more. He’s not telling ANYONE to get their trusted theological information from the Zohar, the Kabbalah, or the unbelieving rabbis. He was just making a point that God, in his sovereignty, astonishingly allowed a reference to Golgotha to be placed in the Zohar – the last place you would expect! That’s what “amazed” Rabbi Cahn and why he had every right to use it as a “hostile witness.”

    I don’t really understand why you would leave that portion in your book AT ALL since you added the hostile witness reference in there because it completely loses its impact, in my opinion. It doesn’t even make sense for you to keep it in there. I am astounded that you believe that Rabbi Cahn excluding Tom Daschle’s invoking of God’s name and blessing at the end of his speech changes the meaning but that these three words do not. I wish I could take a survey on this. But, my hypothesis is that those who agree with your views on what is stated above about “The Zohar Speaks” will agree with you on the other videos as well – and vice versa. But BOTH of us would like for others to view more of his videos to get a better picture of the man, Rabbi Jonathan Cahn, and his teaching.

    Yes – I do appreciate you putting my posts up and am pleasantly surprised, I have to say so I thank you for that.

    • I think you should read my chapter 17 a little more closely. Having it be a hostile witness does nothing to change things – at least to any degree. The problem is that he elevates the rabbis to the level of Daniel and other prophets – and makes it clear that he thinks God inspired them to say what they did – just as he did Daschle. That is what I’m challenging – and is why I say including those phrases changes nothing.

  72. Does anybody else find it a little creepy and disturbing that we are fighting over a supposedly fiction book? Is it worth it? If it just fiction, then take it as such, and who cares if somebody disagrees with the book or the writer?

    On the other hand, if it is not fiction, and Cahn is some new great teacher, then we christians certainly have the right and the obligation to discuss whether or not his teachings and his book square with scripture. Luke commended the Bereans saying they were noble for examining Paul’s teachings in light of scripture. Paul certainly did not become defensive as a result. (see Acts 17:11))

    This is my biggest problem with the book. If it is fiction, then surely we can take or leave its message. But though it is written as fiction, it’s being treated as if it were non-fiction at least and maybe even as a prophetic message. Cahn is certainly being defended as though he were some VIP.

    It sure seems like things always point back to the scriptures:

    I urge you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. Romans 16:16-18

    • Unfortunately, Cahn says it’s only 10% fiction – only the framework.

      The substance of the book consists of what he contends is factual.

  73. Reduced to the most fundamental divide, it has to do with consistently understanding the Word of God literally, including the prophetic passages (while of course recognizing figures of speech, symbolism, etc.) – and that Israel and the Church are two distinct groups in God’s program. Many books have been written on this, so I’m not going to get into a defense of it here.

    Of course I would agree with the first part of this definition. We differ about Israel and the Church being defined as distinct — apparently a priori — as part of the definition. I also don’t want to get into a discussion about this, I’m just trying to locate the essential differences to help me get a grip of this gap that has such drastic differences of opinion on either side.

    But, suffice it to say that:
    1. Interpretation – we understand the New Testament in light of the Old Testament, rather than interpret the Old Testament using the New Testament.

    WOW, there’s a major major difference as I’ve always been taught and accepted that the Old Testament is to be interpreted in light of the New, that is, we interpret the Old according to the revelations that came with the revelation of Christ and there is scripture that guides us in this direction. This is a major difference. It’s sort of shocking, but I’m glad to know about it, will have to spend some time with it.

    We apparently agree on miracles and God’s activity in Creation, though I might have doubted it from things that have been said so it’s good to know.

    4. The Old Testament is relevant and directly applicable in great detail in the life of every believer. However, some things are only indirectly applicable – which is why we no longer observe the dietary laws among many, many other things. There are many things about Isaiah 9 that can be understood and applied in every generation. There are also specific things that were specifically and exclusively to Israel – everyone agrees with that, as well – including the supporters of The Harbinger (America will not be attacked by Rezin). So, the difference is consistently handling the Word of God from Genesis through Revelation.

    There’s nothing in this as stated that I would object to or disagree with but I have a feeling that your idea of “consistent handling” of the Word of God may look rather different from mine.

    However, this isn’t the only answer, because there are dispensationalists, Reformed and Charismatics on both sides of this discussion.

    Yes, but this theology that finds the Harbinger guilty of anything remotely resembling “replacement theology,” that insists so starkly as Tommy Ice does that Israel must be treated as the single recipient of the OT messages, so starkly that entire schools of theology are condemned by his statement without even being acknowledged as existing — this seems to be THE major position among your circle of critics and it seems to me that could include charismatics but wouldn’t include Reformed, whose criticisms would be along different lines.

    I understand the problems – we’re coming at this with a different hermeneutic and theological framework. I believe that mine is the most consistent and you believe yours is. Some agree with me – some agree with you.

    Well, then, in your mind do such theological differences sufficiently account for the extreme division among brethren on the Harbinger and the rancor?

    • I have heard it put this way – if you start with the Old Testament and you work your way forward, taking the Bible literally, grammatically, historically, you will inevitably end up being a dispensationalist.

      If you start with the New Testament and use that to interpret the Old Testament then you will end up being Reformed / Covenant.

      Even many Reformed / Covenant theologians generally agree with this analysis – and this is a well-known principle among Bible teachers / theologians.

      Of course, we see things more clearly in the New Testament – but the meaning of the text is in the text itself (that’s what I mean by a biblical hermeneutic). This means that we can’t take what we know from the New Testament to suggest that what David wrote for example has a different meaning than it did when he wrote it. If that is the case, then the meaning doesn’t reside in the inspired text – but that God is continually adding meaning to the text. This radically changes the concept of inspiration, inerrancy, authority, etc. We may see fuller implications and applications than the original writer and audience – it is seeing it from an enlightened perspective, not imposing a different meaning.

      What happens is if you take the Reformed approach, the it becomes a theological hermeneutic rather than a literal, grammatical, historical hermeneutic. Rather than allowing the text to speak for itself, our understanding of a particular theological issue can get imposed back on the text so that we say “this is what it really means” when the writer would never have understood that meaning in a million years. This completely undermines the idea of the perspicuity of the Scriptures.

      I have never suggested that this is about classic replacement theology, which says that the church replaces Israel. Neither is it Anglo-Israelism, such that America becomes the new Israel in the sense that Mormons believe it. I have only suggested that it is essentially a form of replacement theology because America has been elevated to a place in God’s program that was reserved for Israel alone. And of course, you also believe exactly the same thing – which is why you have no problem eating shellfish or wearing polyester / cotton clothes. The difference is only one of degree upon which we disagree. I have made this very clear – as well as the problems with the way Cahn has expressed himself consistently.

      The differences should be at the theological level and they are sufficient to cause a level of division – but this has gone far beyond that. For whatever reason it has turned radically emotional with the most crazy charges being made such as motives being jealousy, money – with people’s salvation even called into question.

      I think this points to a deeper spiritual battle that goes beyond theological differences.

      • There is no way to talk about “degrees of inspiration.”

        So, if these men were inspired by God, then what they said must, by definition, carry the authority of Scripture.

        This entirely undermines Sola Scriptura. I’m not willing to go there.

  74. Why is there a problem with the idea that God inspired something in the Zohar or a speech by Tom Daschle? If it supports the gospel as that particular passage in the Zohar does, or clearly reflects scripture as Daschle and Edwards’ speeches do, in an extremely pertinent and uncanny way, and if God is sovereign over all things, which I believe (but apparently some others don’t), there is no problem with the idea that God inspired these things.

  75. NOT “inspired” in the same way as scripture, but inspired in the sense that there can’t be any other explanation for something in an extrabibilical context that truly supports God’s word than that God ensured that it happen. God “turns the hearts of kings” etc.

    • The way Cahn put it concerning the writings of the Zohar in his message on the video is that “the Holy Spirit just put it in there.”

      That is inspired in exactly the same way as Scripture.

      My guess is there is a difference in the details of our understanding of God’s complete sovereignty because of your Reformed views. This is why I talk about theological packages – this is all intertwined in one way or another. I would say that God’s sovereignty is to absolute that he can incorporate the free actions of others into his plan while retaining both complete control, knowing his plan will come to pass, while not directly causing every thing to happen. But this will take us far away from the subject at hand and I don’t want to go down this particular road at this point.

  76. Dave

    Have you ever heard Rabbi Cahn’s own testimony and how God used occult books to save him? He was reading some new age material – a series on UFO’s, I think, and, thinking he was picking up the next one in a series he was reading – due to the type of lettering on it, actually picked up The Late Great Planet Earth by Hal Lindsey. He read it and God saved him! His point is – God IN HIS SOVEREIGNTY can use ANYTHING! So it’s no surprise that he gets excited when he sees sources opposed to Christ used for God’s glory to point people TO Christ – that’s all. One who reads that might actually end up researching the matter and get saved.

    Now who is reading too much evil into things?

    • I have no idea what your point was with this. Of course the Lord can use anything.

      I just explicitly said that I have no problem whatsoever with using a hostile witness – or seeing that even evil people can give testimony to the one, true God and biblical truth.

      The Harbinger does not rise or fall on this point. It is simply included to highlight a pattern of mystical tendencies which are abundantly obvious unless someone chooses to defend him on this point while completely disregarding the facts.

  77. Dave:

    You’re not making any sense because adding the “hostile witness” very much dismantles your argument. Because Jonathan placed that little phrase on the end – “on that point” – it proves that he does NOT elevate the rabbis to the level of Daniel and the prophets. He is not directing people to consider the rabbis as a trusted theological source as a whole. Are you saying that people shouldn’t go to Golgotha (i.e. the cross) for their eternal life? Did Satan and/or his cohorts inspire the rabbis to write this portion of the Zohar as they may have the rest?

    The point is, if Satan can infiltrate the church, can’t God infiltrate the occult who is mightier than Satan? God is so sovereign, he even controls our very speech so I have absolutely NO problem with Jonathan’s position on this.

    • Laura,

      I think we will just have to disagree on the hostile witness issue and the inspiration of the rabbis.

      There is much more going on here than just this one message, which has a number of problems on its own.

      As people read this section in my book, they can judge for themselves whether or not this actually dismantles my argument.

      This is one point in a larger discussion – and that doesn’t change at all with this.

      His use of the rabbis and elevating them to prophet status is clear in other parts of his message – as I have documented.

      But we’ve been over this ground before.

  78. Dear David,

    Briefly in response to what you wrote to Laura above, I must respectfully disagree both with your premise – that Cahn elevates the writings of the rabbis to the status of the prophets – and its conclusion which you cite in your book – that …”Cahn elevates the rabbis to the level of Moses and Daniel.” (The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction, page 197, center page)

    No he does not.

    In all of the teachings I have ever heard from Pastor/Rabbi Jonathan Cahn, he has never, but never elevated any extra-Biblical teacher, teaching, or legend to the status of the prophets, nor their writings to that of the Holy Bible.

    He has used them, as I have seen and heard others like Dr. Charles Stanley, Dr. Churck Swindoll, Dr. James MacArthur, Dr. James MacDonald, and others have; to help illustrate a point which supports outside of the Scriptures Biblical truth.

    But never have I ever heard Jonathan Cahn teach, either on the printed page, or on radio (Two Nice Jewish Boys, Wednesday nights on WMCA, 570AM on local Christian stations from 10:00PM to 11:00PM), or in his sermons what page 197 in your book and other Internet critics of The Harbinger with doing. That is simply not true. I must point this out to you as a witness to this fact.

    Now you are entitled to believe otherwise, but you are not entitled to charge the man with something I know for a fact he has never done, does not do, nor will ever do. And let me be clear about this if I may; if the day ever comes when he does cross that line, I will personlly inquire about it with him as to what he precislely means.

    But, no David, Jonathan Cahn does not do what your book charges him with doing. I personally know that for a fact.

    Thank you and God bless,
    JB

    • Jose,

      On page 197 of my book, I very clearly document that he, in fact, does give the very distinct impression that he has elevated the rabbis in the message on listening to the Zohar.

      These are his words, not mine. If he means something other than what he clearly says, then he needs to reconsider many things about they way he says things – because over and over again, both he and his defenders keep saying “this is what he said” – but “this is what he meant.” That can happen a few times – but this is a predominant issue throughout this discussion. If you have to continually explain what you mean – and that it doesn’t really mean what you said and is the most obvious way to understand it – then some serious thought needs to be given to revising how one expresses oneself.

      From Cahn’s message which was posted on YouTube, but has since been taken down:
      The death of Messiah—all pinpointed in time and space. Moses
      zeroed in on the day. Passover. He dies on the day that the lamb
      is killed. The prophets—Daniel zeroes in on the time period,
      mathematically, before 70 A.D. Daniel—those seventy sevens.
      The rabbis in the book of Moed, unwittingly, and another thing
      we shared this [sic], zeroed in on the year by saying that the
      cosmic change all took place in the year 30 A.D. . . . And now
      the very hill, the very place, here in, of all places, the rabbinical
      writings, the Zohar. . . . you want mercy, you go there. Listen
      to the rabbis on this point. . . .

      (page 197, The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction?)

      He very clearly says the rabbis zeroed in on something specific, just as did Moses and Daniel. That Moses and Daniel revealed this truth in their time and the rabbis revealed equivalent truth in theirs.

  79. Dave, it seems like this issue, like alot of them these days, falls under the heading of the sufficiency of scripture. Sola Scriptura. Interesting that it comes during a time also that we have a reformation of sorts going on…I mean people coming back to a more reformed understanding of biblical Christianity including the 5 solas of the reformation. And yet we have another group of people who haven’t come on board with this understanding yet and they can so easily be led astray by anyone who comes in and says “Thus sayeth the Lord”…the church is weak and infiltrated with the unsaved too, sadly. The church doesn’t understand that scripture is closed. There is no more word from God except the word of God because it is sufficient, but its own testimony of itself is that it is all we need for faith and godliness. The church has not been taught this, unfortunately. Not just in the word of faith type churches but also in solid, bible teaching churches where doctrine is dumbed down and made “relevant” so that the average person in the pew does not know church history, does not know principles of interpreting scripture, and does not know about things like the sufficiency of scripture, or why it matters.

  80. In order for G-d’s children, either jew OR gentile, to HEAR what the G-d of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob has to inform us about, we will have to set aside our man-made contrived theological fences of doctrines, hermeneutics, pet beliefs, dogmas, creeds, and etc., and allow the Holy Spirit to instruct us.

    We are being given warning-upon-warning, thru’ disasters, natural phenomenae, famines, pestilences, oppression,events in the sky, wars and rumors of wars, and still, we will not “humble ourselves and pray and seek HIS face and turn from our wicked ways” (iiChron.7:14).

    Further, we wilfully choose to believe that the G-d of the Hebrew scriptures is NOT the same G-d of the Christian scriptures. That’s why we can delegitimize Cahn’s insights in Isaiah 9:6. We conveniently disregard that G-d has said in both the Hebrew and Christian scriptures, “I am the Lord, I CHANGE NOT” (Mal 3:6) and that Jesus Christ is “the same yesterday, today and forever”(Heb.13:8).

    When we read Torah, especially Deuteronomy, G-d demands we, HIS creation, respect, honor, praise and worship Him — that we choose blessings and Life. Yet, with all that extended grace, we arrogantly think we are going to tell G-d what HIS WORD says, and we are going to tell the ordinary seed of Abraham, through Isaac and Jacob, that what the Holy Spirit has made clear to him, and what he is “warning” us gentiles about, is hermeneutically/doctrinally/theologically not correct.

    Well, think again! G-d is not concerned about yours or my correctness of hermeneutics/doctrines/theology — He is preparing His Bride for the wedding celebration. And this “getting ready” is not in progressive stages: we either are obedient and with Him OR we are not. It’s that simple. We’ve received the wedding invitation; now let’s prepare by taking heed of the warnings we are being given. We don’t want to end up with our lamps without oil when it is needed to greet the bridegroom.

    • Moll,

      Thank you for your comments.

      I assume you mean believing Jews and Gentiles prior to the present age were God’s children, since in Christ there is neither Jew nor Gentile as one new man – and the only salvation for anyone is in and through faith in Christ alone. (Just to clarify for some readers who believe that even today, Jews can be God’s children apart from Christ.)

      We are in complete agreement about man-made doctrines and systems. However, following the biblical model and deriving theology from a careful study of the Word of God done in dependence and through the power of the Holy Spirit is God’s perfect revelation to us.

      We also agree that undoubtedly he sends warnings to all generations that His judgment is coming upon a wicked, fallen, sinful creation – and all are called on to repent.

      And we completely agree that God does not change and the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is the God of Peter, John and James.

      We absolutely are not telling God what His Word says, we are discovering what He has said to us in His Word through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.

      However, much of the understanding and application of Cahn’s “insights” into Isaiah 9:10 have not been revealed by God as even a cursory study of the passage clearly demonstrates.

      I show this in great detail in my book.

      My passion is the Scriptures (which I accept completely down to the smallest jot and tittle) and evangelizing and discipling others through teaching His Word – which is literally true.

      And of course we agree that “the Spirit and the Bride say come.”

      So, we agree on many, many things – much more than your comments seem to reflect.

      Blessings in Christ,
      Dave

  81. “However, much of the understanding and application of Cahn’s “insights” into Isaiah 9:10 have not been revealed by God as even a cursory study of the passage clearly demonstrates.

    I show this in great detail in my book.”

    Hello Dave,
    Cahn has offered no special “insights” into Isaiah 9:10, he reads it as all of us read it, as a description of Israel’s attitude of nonrepentance after God’s first wave of judgment against them by the Assyrians. All Cahn did was notice that this verse describes America’s attitude after 9/11, that various American politicians even quoted it in connection with 9/11, thereby declaring the same attitude of nonrepentance it describes of Israel, and that certain physical “harbingers” also appeared in America that emphasize the same message: That America is in defiance of God, refusing to acknowledge that we are under judgment and that 9/11 was judgment, a first warning judgment so that if the nation doesn’t turn back to Him there is to be more to come.

    It’s all in the meaning of the Isaiah passage itself and its undeniable application in America. I really have no clue what more God could have done to impress the application and understanding of that verse in relation to America than He has done in the ways Cahn has pointed out. You seem to be asking for something impossible, in fact I have no idea what you ARE asking for it’s so strange to my thinking.

  82. I’ve read “The Harbinger” completely, and am going through it a second time.

    My first read-through gave me chills when Cahn’s narrative detailed “actual events” as correlated to the Harbingers. I questioned whether a timeline had been physically drawn out, with corresponding dates & events detailed to give a better picture of the “Isaiah 9:10 Effect”. While I read the book with the understanding that it is “fiction wrapped around truth”, I felt the book was trying very hard to not cross the imaginary line between fiction and fact, and stepped across numerous times.

    Taking into consideration that the Berean Call really must be heeded with respect to Christian works of “Fiction” – such that we “question because we are eager to learn, not question to challenge authority”, I knew that I had serious issues with the factual material presented in a prose form. It felt very much like a “Law and Order” episode, where they rip the truth from the headlines to draw attention to a serious, real event. As such, I could either do my due diligence and follow Cahn’s research rabbit trail and read every referenced article on my own, or simply accept that they existed, and acknowledged Cahn’s citations as accurate for the purpose of the story.

    I followed the latter for easy-reading purposes. That’s what a second, third, fourth, or more, reads come in. The best take-away I have from this book/novel by Jonathan Cahn is this:

    – America, it’s time to humble yourself and pray, seek God’s face, and may He hear from Heaven and have mercy on us all that He turns his wrath away from our nation. Only through prayer and repentance can we expect God to change this nation’s current course.

    Search the scriptures, discover for yourself what the Bible says, and pray that God inspires you to understand His Word.

    • Thanks for the comments, Tony.

      The reason I wrote my book is because that I knew that very few people would have either the time or inclination to do the 100’s of hours of research necessary to sort this all out.

      So, if you’re interested, my book will give you virtually all the research in one place with over 250 footnotes between quoting the book and citing the references.

      As it turns out, from a biblical and historical (and scientific) perspective, there are serious issues.

      My book will also give you a solid foundation for doing further research if you’re so inclined – but to be honest, I don’t think there are many stones left unturned.

      If I can be of any assistance or answer any questions, just let me know.

      Dave

  83. Dave,

    Fervor and zeal often carry us far beyond what mercy and truth can accomplish. This is the difference between a “God” idea and a “Good” idea. One comes from divine inspiration, the other from the mind of man. As we both know, biblical and spiritual concepts cannot be grasped by the natural mind; in fact, it often seems intentional that God confounds the wisdom of the wise by presenting something so simple that the human mind must assign it some deep, mystical meaning.

    Because to truly understand the Bible requires a relationship with the Author and Creator (God), engaging in theological discourses as to how a scripture is interpreted and thus applied to everyday life is pointless – we end up squabbling over who is more “right” than the other, rather than really receiving and learning to apply scripture in our lives. Any time Man gets involved in the things of God, there is the tendency to try and out-do God, almost as if to prove we really don’t need Him, when in reality our futile attempts only underscore our need for a God and Savior.

    Since my mom was gracious enough to provide me a copy of Cahn’s novel, I will invite her to read your article here and offer to buy her a copy of your book in exchange.

    T

  84. Why is it that people are saying there is a different end for Israel and the Church. The Church is the TRUE Israel! A remnant of Jews will come in the church at the end! The argument that is at stake here is Zionism. Once saved always saved, and using Gods grace as a green card to sin and the absence of power and anointing in most churches. Yes, America was never completely in Gods truth when it started. But Cahn is calling for repentance…oddly enough the FIRST step you must take when you hear Jesus loving Gospel message! You must know and realize you are a sinner and lost without him. You must repent! You must change and want to change (we will not be perfect since we are in flesh) But His Spirit will live in you and comfort you and help you! You will change and the change will continue to perfect your faith and walk until your time is up. We must consistently be in him and stand firm in Jesus. Oddly enough Cahns book makes people ripe for the ACTS 2:38 SALVATION TRUTH! Peter replied, ACTS 2:38 “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

    • Barry,

      There is a different end for national Israel because the Lord clearly made unconditional promises to the physical nation that cannot be fulfilled, even in a very spiritualized way in the church. This is abundantly clear in the Abrahamic (Genesis), Land (Deut.), Davidic (2 Sam) and New (Jer 31 and Eze 36) covenants. However, this particular article and comment section is not about this issue (although there are two other articles where you can comment on this more).

      The comments about “once saved always saved” are very much a straw man argument. I have never heard anyone remotely suggest that this is a license to sin – nor have I seen anyone live their lives as if this were true.

      And actually, these two issues are related because they both deal with the nature of unconditional covenants in the Scriptures.

      Dave

  85. I would like for someone to comment on Revelation Chapter 18 as I believe it pertains to the United States in the last days. I have always believed that “Babylon the Great is fallen…” refers to wall street. I invite wisdom on this subject.

    • Hi Paul,

      There have been times when I have wondered that myself and carefully looked at the passage – especially watching the smoke rise from the WTC buildings prior to their collapse on 9/11.

      However, I keep coming back to the biblical text – and neither the immediate context, nor the context of Revelation, of Daniel nor any other passages provide enough for this understanding to rise above speculation, while there are biblical reasons to think this cannot be talking about the USA. The absence of biblical support for it being the USA and the presence of biblical support for it not being the USA makes this highly unlikely, if not impossible biblically. (This can be demonstrated, but it would take more time to lay this out in detail than I have time to devote to this at the moment. However, I’m sure there are articles on the internet that would demonstrate this – although, of course there are those that would strongly support the USA view – I just don’t find the arguments for it as compelling as those against it.)

      A major thing to consider is that the Scriptures focus heavily on significant countries and associated armies from north, south and east of Israel, there just is nothing from the West – which suggests no major world powers in the west by that point in the Tribulation period. This means the USA will almost certainly fall and I would suggest this is very possibly because of the Rapture of the church especially with far-higher-than-world-average number of born again believers in the business world, as well as in government and military leadership, not to mention the total number of born again believers. It would be virtually impossible for the USA to remain a super-power – either militarily or financially if all the born-again Christians are suddenly gone. It will collapse overnight.

  86. I just finished reading The Harbinger. I am a believer of God and His Word. The Bible. I would like to read comments from you and anyone else. I have always believed the Bible. I don’t understand some of the stories. But I do believe that I am a sinner. And many years ago I confessed to Jesus that I am a sinner and asked Him to come into my life and make me who He intended and what my role is concerning His message. I believe by faith that I am saved even though I remain a sinner. I thank God for His Grace. And I believe my purpose is to share my story about what God has done in my life. And that He loves all His children and wants them to repent of their sins and be born again. I look forward to the day that Jesus comes back to take us all that accept and believe in Him. I pray for my family and friends and witness to them about God.

    • Thank you for your testimony. It was a blessing to read.

      Unfortunately, The Harbinger has many problems biblically and historically, that I detail in my book. This article is essentially excerpts from the book.

      Dave

  87. It is obvious that you don’t agree with the book, The Harbinger, but as a Christian I feel it is a great book that gets a person to really THINK about the things that have come to pass in our world, specifically our Country, and to remind us that we have ‘rationalized’ away the beliefs and morals of our Country for long enough and that IT IS TIME to TURN BACK TO GOD. I’m always stunned at the arrogancy of people, especially in government, when they use the phrase “…and may God bless America!”…why should God bless America?! We’ve done nothing but run him out of our homes, our schools, our government. This country no longer stands for anything decent, so we fall for everything that is indecent. I guess what I’m trying to say is that maybe you should stop ‘knocking’ this book! How do you know that God isn’t using it to bring others back to Him?! Are you, then, being a ‘stumbling block’ to others?!

    • Of course it is time to turn to God, but as I note clearly in the article, my book and in another reply to Alex’s comment – The Harbinger is absolutely not a great book.

      There I stated: Unfortunately, although The Harbinger talks about repentance – it does not tell how to repent or be saved – and even if for this reason alone it is not even a “good book” let alone a great one. Take a look at his chapter that is supposed to be about salvation – it does not mention faith, belief or trust even one time – and neither does it mention the resurrection of Christ apart from which there is no gospel.

      I have no doubt that God has used The Harbinger to direct people to him – but he also used a demon possessed girl in Ephesus to tell people to listen to Paul’s message – after which Paul delivered her. This is hardly a model to follow. God also used the Babylonians to get people to turn back to him, but that hardly means that we should emulate the Babylonian tactics simply because God used them to his glory. This pragmatic view of the Scriptures and the work of God is completely unbiblical. The end never justifies the means if the means are unbiblical.

      Warning people of this and the associated danger is not being a stumbling block. For example, in my book I clearly presented the gospel, while it is not clear at all in The Harbinger. That is what is a stumbling block.

  88. I am reading The Harbinger and must say that I am enjoying the book. I feel the reaction to The Harbinger is similar to the reaction over The Shack. Both books are fiction – and need to be regarded as such. While there are many books that inspire, encourage, and possibly point to some aspect of truth they should never take the place of nor be viewed as truth. Jesus is truth. His Holy Word is truth. We must be dilligent to rightly divide the truth and not be enslaved or led astray. In the last days, even the elect will be deceived. May we have eyes to see and ears to hear what THE Spirit is saying. You can read the Harbinger and not be deceived that it is an accurate reflection of prophesy. And, you can read The Harbinger and be reminded that it is to Jesus we must turn. You just have to remember that the plumb line is The Word of God, not of any other author. Maybe there are correlations to America and Isreal – but America is NOT Isreal. Yes, God is the same, yesterday, today, and forever and we would be remiss in America to think that we can escape judegment. But…Jesus said that He did not give us a spirit of fear. He reminded his disciples to fear not for I am with you…He sent His precious Holy Spirit to be my teacher. Praise His Name! Let The Teacher, teach!

    • The reaction to the Shack was hardly overdone – it was filled with outright heresy on any number of points. If anyone thinks that the Shack’s depiction of the Lord is anywhere close to accurate it raises the question as to whether that person knows him at all – because it is so radically different than what the His Word teaches.

      Concerning The Harbinger being fiction – the author has stated publicly multiple times that the fiction is only a framework, but that what he has written is 90% fact.

      I have an article here on the website that deals with the matter of Christian fiction.

      In Ephesians, Paul said that the Lord had given pastors, teachers and evangelists to the church for the building up of the Body of Christ. The Holy Spirit is the One who convicts our heart of the truth of what we read in the Scriptures or what we hear from a teacher who is faithful to the Word of God.

  89. I understand that reading the scriptures, especially prophetic books can seem to mean different things to different people; but I’m going to make my comment short and relevant to both points of view…yes, in the past many of us have made assumptions based on speculation only for there is not enough written about a topic, time, nation etc….to claim this or that as facts when there is not enough of it. This is what I mean… many people beleive that the promise to Israel made by the always truthful GOD somehow is revoked when sinners act like sinners and now he will forget his promise to Israel and place it on the church….NO, NO, NO. They are two different entities and they have different purposes and two distinct futures all though in the end they will both come together when GOD makes this happen. Neither will be foresaken. this, that…only speculation. I got to admit the Harbenger is a great book, that inspires repentence, but has’t the bible said this all along, “repent for the kingom of heaven is at hand” Is something that GOD the son said when he was walking the earth. But Israel is Israel, the Church is the Church, America is America… let’s not beging to start swapping one for the other…please

    • I am pretty much with you until you talk about the distinction between the Church and Israel is merely speculation. It is not speculation when it can be shown that the Scriptures clearly teach this. Even for those who would reject this interpretation, they would not suggest it is speculation on our part.

      Unfortunately, although The Harbinger talks about repentance – it does not tell how to repent or be saved – and even if for this reason alone it is not even a “good book” let alone a great one. Take a look at his chapter that is supposed to be about salvation – it does not mention faith, belief or trust even one time – and neither does it mention the resurrection of Christ apart from which there is no gospel.

  90. i am curious about the final chapter which talks about baruch who was really named barry. what’s that all about?

    • In the Bible, Baruch is a scribe who was to write down what the prophet gave him. In the story Nouriel Kaplan was called Barry as a child because his full name is Baruch Nouriel Kaplan. So, it is a literary device used by the author – and it seems for the purpose of giving the author himself some sort of biblical authority – or authority from God – although he would undoubtedly deny this.

  91. Sorry, I did’t mean to imply that the distinction between the church and Israel is speculation, you are right Dave it is not and I appologize that it came out that way. The bible is full of biblical truths that is obvious right…so why do we continue to bring about a complete doctrine on a single phrases in the bible that is never mentioned anywhere else when we have so much solid teaching in the scriptures….does our generation have itchy ears for teachings not supported by the bible? IF I was to say that the sabbath which we all know what it means …but instead I said that every 7 days GOD will punish the nation to a certain degree because…fill in the blank…..and I tried to convince you that’s how GOD uses the sabbath for or why GOD made the sabbath ….you should be able to know that it is eaither a lie or mere speculation becuase no were in the bible does it says that right…time and time again the bible gives its true meaning about the sabbath and even then the teachers of the law gave Jesus a hard time about him healing people on the sabbath and Jesus taught them a little more about the sabbath….what I’m saying is read your bible there are so many legit prophesies there. Know what’s biblical and don’t be taken away by every wind of doctrine. And you are so right Dave…any book that is suppose to bring any MESSAGE about GOD but doesn’t care to go into who is Jesus and nor does it tell you how we can be saved…well need I say more?

    • Hey, thanks Alex.

      Actually, I thought that may be what you meant – but I just wanted to clear it up for someone else who might read it.

      You’re right about there are enough clear things we can teach about – we don’t have to make things up. And a point I make in my book is, if it’s not in the text someone made it up.

      Happy Thanksgiving.

      (I’m in the Philippines right now – so I’m missing the holiday back home.)

  92. Your comments on the Harbinger Book remind me of my youth. I was raised in a group of people who were so holy that God himself had to take off His Sandals to walk in their presence. These people and their Pharisee attitude drove me from God for a quarter century of my life because no one could be saved using their rules. I walked away from God until He let me know that what went on between them and me was not between them and me, but between them and Himself! It was after that that I found, reading the Bible, that the only time Jesus Corrected Himself was when He spoke of those who ‘hurt one of these little ones’, meaning HIS little ones, that it would be better if they had a’ millstone hung about their neck and they were drowned in the depths of the sea, No, it would be better for them if they had NEVER BEEN BORN!”
    It’s always easier to tear down than to build, to use ‘man’s knowledge of God’ (Theology) to explain why no one is right but you. If you were right, I’d have to go back to Jesus and tell him what I did at the beginning of my wandering in the desert, ‘No one can be saved by these standards, I’d just as well go it alone’. Fortunately, I met the Jesus who is the “Good Shepherd” at the end of my wandering. He’s not the hireling who takes his 357 pistol to ‘do-away’ with the wounded little ones who survived the attack of the Wolf, but the “ONE who leaves the 99 and goes into the desert to pick up and nurture and bring back the wounded ‘Little Ones’.
    I thank the Father God that I have met this Jesus. None of us can make it without his Loving Care, but many are willing to be Pharisees, and to use the ‘357’ on those who don’t make it according their ‘gospel’.

    Ray Grace

    • Ray,

      I’m sorry I offended you with what I wrote. I would encourage you to consider reading my book where I explain myself more fully and try to be as gracious as possible in acknowledging the good things about The Harbinger.

      Jesus spent a lot of time saying, “You have heard it said, but I say unto you…” – that was extensive correction. And his spent a huge amount of time on correcting wrong thinking / theology – so I’m not sure what you mean that Jesus on corrected on one occasion.

      Beyond that the prophets and apostles were continually confronting and correcting false teachers based upon the Word of God. I think I have been have careful to show that “corrective” thing I have said is grounded in Scripture. In Ephesians Paul wrote that “he gave some as apostles, some as prophets, pastors/teachers and evangelists for the building up of the Body of Christ.” We have a tremendous responsibility to teach people when serious error is brought into the church. Paul told Timothy that in the last days there would be many false teachers. Peter and Jude warned about this as well.

      Concerning being a Pharisee: That’s a pretty strong word. Would you mind explaining what you mean when you refer to me in that way? And also what I actually said in the article that caused you to come to that conclusion?

      I was saved 28 years ago from a life of wickedness and sin by God’s wonderful grace. I have been serving Him full time for the last 25 years, as a teacher, elder, Bible institute founder and director and a missionary for 16 years in Eastern Europe. This isn’t to say that doing these thing necessarily means someone isn’t a Pharisee – but I do think it is at least an indication that they do not wish to be.

      I’m in the Manila as I write this – and today I gave 2 keynote messages and 3 seminars that focused on being a better Christian teacher who reflects the love and grace of God in everything we say and do that our students might become more like Christ – and that we are all completely dependent upon the Cross of Christ, the power of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God to bring about change of any eternal value. Again, if I am a Pharisee, it is not because I want to be – and my guess is that the 1300 or so that were in attendance would probably say that this is a false and unfair charge. But I am open to correction and always wish to be teachable.

      So, if you could be more specific, that would be helpful.

      In His Loving Care,
      Dave

  93. My caveat…I am ignorant. I believe we all are when it comes to God’s word. I honestly do not believe we know half of what we should, or can to be honest due to our finite way of thinking. I definately think that even those of us who know more about the Bible don’t live half of what we do know.
    I am currently trying to read The Harbinger and I confess I have not read your book as of yet. It is a hard read for me because it is not of the genre that I usually read, so I find it difficult to stay focused on the story. But, I do have to say that when reading the Bible that context is always the most important thing. One has to know who the author is, what his intent was, who he was writing to (his audience at that time), the cultural differences between that time and this time, and how we can build a bridge from then to now so that we can accurately apply it to today’s time. Hosea 13 comes to mind when I think about how America is now. We [as a nation] have many idols…not necessarily of silver and in specific images, but more on our successes and our money, we have turned our backs on God and forgotten Him. I believe that this passage, although specifically about ancient Israel, can also be applied to many nations on the earth…and since I live in the USA, it seems like it does apply so very much to us. I do not know enough about Hebrew culture or its mysticism to make a contribution to whether or not this book is “valid”, but I do know enough about the Bible to know that it [Bible] was inspired by God Himself and can be applied to many circumstances in our daily lives, that is one reason we have the Bible.
    So, one question I have, and I am sure that you address this in your book, is concerning the fall of the stock market where he claims it fell 777 points on the seventh year. I haven’t researched this yet because I, well, I haven’t taken the time…there is so much in this book that I want to research for myself and I don’t even know where to start.

    • Hi Bryan,

      Thanks for writing.

      Yes, I address all of these issues in great detail in my book.

      I agree completely that we must all learn from the Bible how God does things and deals with nations in general – and agree that what the U.S. is going through could very well be the judgment of God. However, The Harbinger goes way, way beyond this to assign specific recent events in America to a corresponding event in Israel. My book shows that as much as that may appear to be the case in The Harbinger, it is almost completely an illusion – just like a stage magician creates an illusions such that what people think they are seeing does not correspond to reality. All that is needed to see this is to move the camera to a different angle to do the reveal. This is what my book is – I move the camera and reveal that it really isn’t what the illusionist has made it look like. (I am not at all implying that Jonathan Cahn’s intention was to create an illusion – but he did manufacture a lot of things to give the impression that the coincidences were much more than they were.)

      I also deal with the hedge of protection extensively

      Dave

  94. I did have another question concerning the ‘hedge of protection’ being removed. I am sure that there were other, less significant attacks on Israel before the Assyrians destroyed Israel…the same can be said about the OKC bombings and Pearl Harbor (each being pretty significant) but in light of the 9/11 attacks and since, our country has been divided. During PH, we were pulled into a world war which actually united our peoples, so much unlike 9/11 did. It lead to an industrial and economic boom in the US and other countries…so much unlike what 9/11 lead too…a fall in the same and a huge increase in our deficit…and the buying up of that said deficit by other countries (the majority of which was purchased by China). It is quite fascinating.
    Peace.

  95. Any born again Christian, who’s sins have been forgiven by Jesus Christ will believe what is in the Word of God, the Bible. It is the living, breathing Word of God. It’s pages contain instruction and teaching of the ONLY way to Heaven, through the Son of God. The world indicates there are many roads to Heaven. This is not true. I do not just have a “belief” I have an experience. No other religion in the world has ANY leader that died for their people besides Jesus Christ. It doesn’t really matter if you believe Jonathan Cann’s book The Harbinger, or anyone elses interpretation, there is a clear account of the nation of Israel removing God from their lives and their punishment in the Scriptures. You do not have to believe any connection to Israel to believe what has and is happening to America today. What if you believe God is real, there is punishment for sin, a hell to avoid and a Heaven to gain in the next life? Are you losing anything by believing that? So what if you’re wrong? Then you lose everything. Jesus did not die for nothing. He died for me and you. And He is coming back one day. There is nothing to lose for being ready.

  96. The time one takes to read “The Harbinger”, one could have read Romans and John and Galatians and Ephesians and really been saturated with deep truth.
    Books are sensational, webs spun by masters and as such they attempt to make merchandise of Christians and extract our dollars. The gullible are snared. Why spend money on the Publishing media and their spin masters?
    I’m glad you refuted “The Harbinger”. I listend to it’s author about 4 times and just shook my head in dissaproval and amazment on his magic and spin. Should we really be surprised? Not if we believe what Paul told Timothy.
    Good defense of our Faith and exposure to “the slight of men”, Dave. The Lord is with your spirit.

  97. Does it really matter what happens in America or past Israel, who evens cares what happen on 9/11. The of the matter is that Christ JESUS is coming again…I will edge all men and women all over the world to read the BIBLE everyday and ask for GODS guidance, direction also GODS divine understanding of the BIBLE. AMEN

  98. Thank you Dave
    Your comment sums it up perfectly

    Unfortunately, although The Harbinger talks about repentance – it does not tell how to repent or be saved – and even if for this reason alone it is not even a “good book” let alone a great one. Take a look at his chapter that is supposed to be about salvation – it does not mention faith, belief or trust even one time – and neither does it mention the resurrection of Christ apart from which there is no gospel.

  99. Shemitah díd not happen, as Cahn keeps saying, so for sure he is not a man of God. Jesus commanded not to call anyone a rabbi (Matthew 23:8), but Cahn is called so with his approval. To believe that America was founded by Christians is to be ignorant of History at best.

    • I would not judge him as a not personally being a “man of God” – the Lord knows the heart. The decision to threaten bringing a lawsuit against a fellow believer, particularly one that has no legal merit, doesn’t put him in a great position, though.

      However, aside from this, because of the innumerable problems, it can be said with confidence that The Harbinger is not a message from God – although I don’t doubt that He has used it to His own glory.

  100. I suggest that some people who post here should be a little more cautious about denouncing a fellow believer as “not a man of God” and making a man an offender for a word. And to say that America was NOT founded by Christians is unbelievably ignorant. Pilgrims, Puritans.

    • I assume she is referring the Founding Fathers and the deep masonic influences, which you have noted extensively on your own site, referencing Chris Pinto, if I recall correctly. It would probably be best to seek a bit of clarification rather than quickly throwing around things like, “unbelievably ignorant” as she is undoubtedly aware of the Pilgrims and Puritans (who actually did have their own serious theological issues in a variety of areas).

  101. Hi Dave,

    In your post of February 19th at 6:59 pm you said the following regarding Rabbi Cahn,

    “The decision to threaten bringing a lawsuit against a fellow believer, particularly one that has no legal merit, doesn’t put him in a great position, though”.

    Are you aware that Rabbi Cahn has had absolutely NOTHING to do with the lawsuit? His publisher, Charisma, put out a statement on February 11th stating the following and I quote:

    Publisher of The Harbinger clarifies misinformation regarding its dispute with author of critique

    Lake Mary, FL—Charisma House, the publishers of The Harbinger, the New York Times best seller by Jonathan Cahn, issues a statement to address misinformation regarding its intellectual property dispute between Charisma House and David James and his publisher The Berean Call.

    In a public statement Tessie DeVore, Executive Vice President of Charisma House, said:

    “Charisma House, the Book Group of Charisma Media, has sought a private dialogue with David James with respect to concerns it has regarding the use of its intellectual property in Mr. James’ work. In the first instance, Charisma had concerns regarding Mr. James’ original cover for his critique that was substantially similar to the cover of Rabbi Cahn’s work The Harbinger, published by Charisma House, which would create confusion in the market as to the source and sponsorship of the critique. Mr. James agreed and changed his cover.

    “The second instance relates to the amount of original text that may legally be used in a critique of a work under applicable copyright laws. Although the parties respectfully and thoughtfully shared their respective views of a fact-intensive and complicated area of intellectual property law, Mr. James and The Berean Call unfortunately have decided to take this dispute public. Charisma House has pursued the disputed issues in a responsible manner and requested reasonable information in order to evaluate further the scope of the dispute.

    “As this issue has spilled into public forums, the dispute has been re-characterized as one in which Charisma House and Rabbi Cahn have sought to suppress the right to criticize The Harbinger and discourage dialogue regarding the work. Because of this misinformation, Charisma House feels compelled to respond in order to make clear its position that any and all dissent, disagreement or dialogue regarding The Harbinger is not only encouraged but also necessary for the continued growth of the body of Christ in today’s world.

    “It is also important to note that despite what has been portrayed, the legal counsel involved represents Charisma House and not Rabbi Cahn. Any communication from the attorney to The Berean Call has been initiated by Charisma House and not Rabbi Cahn.

    “Both Charisma House and Rabbi Cahn remain confident that this matter can be resolved without the necessity of litigation and in a Christian manner. The parties’ disagreement over intellectual property issues cannot be confused with disagreement over the right to question one’s views of God.”

    Since it has now been brought to light that Rabbi Cahn has had no involvement whatsoever in this matter, I think it’s only fair that you set the record straight and not allow his good name to continue to be dragged through the mud about this issue. He has no control over what another entity does and if this is not corrected, this would be nothing less than slander.

    I hope you set the record straight, if you are not already in the process of making strides to do so.

    • Yes, I am aware of the statement which was first published on Apprising.org by Ken Silva – who was contacted directly by Charisma.

      As far as I know, up until a couple of days ago, he has the only official release on company letterhead (which is also shown on his website) – with no original statement available anywhere else.

      This story has been picked up by some others who have quoted the official statement on their websites as it comes from Apprising.

      I know for a fact that Ken has received this statement from them personally and that his reporting on it is 100% accurate.

      However, for whatever reason it has not been released or published elsewhere.

      In response to the matter of setting the record straight, for now I will just leave it at the fact that this statement does not accurately reflect the entire matter.

      Therefore, as of now, I stand by what I have written thus far and will correct it if and when all the facts make it appropriate to do so.

  102. It seems that there is some confusion between the Founding Fathers and the Pilgrims.
    -Founding fathers: G. Washington, et al, who got independence from Great Britain in 1776, and founded the nation. Many, like Washington, were masons, as plenty of official documents show, some of those documents on the net. Some testimonies and other documents show that they rejected Christ (not only in the video “the hidden faith of the founding fathers”, also in youtube).
    -The Pilgrims: Christians who arrived to the existing 13 colonies in 1620 fleeing from religious persecution in England. They certainly came to flee, not to found a 2nd Israel, as J. Cahn makes up, and clearly says in the 2nd DVD of his Isaiah 9:10 2-DVD set.

    • @Toni: Yes, there is a difference and sometimes this is confused. However, Cahn does make this distinction, as do I in my book The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction. And, as I note in my book, the Pilgrims and Puritans (although having different ideologies) were looking to establish an “Israel” – but this is because at least some of them saw it as the church’s responsibility to establish the kingdom – so it was an early form of Replacement Theology – and isn’t a good source for Cahn to appeal to. This is just one of innumerable problems in his book.

      And, you’re also right about the Founding Father’s themselves. The more I have studied this the more concerned I have become with the dream sequence with Solomon and Washington in The Harbinger.

  103. Thanks for the clarificación regarding the Founding Fathers and the Pilgrims, yet the confusion I was refering to was not in mr Cahn, but in some Christians. Anyway, the Pilgrims díd not arrive to 13 British colonies (as I mistakingly wrote) , which would be formed later. Maybe mr Cahn likes the replacement theology because he is an American Jew, and maybe likes to be in “double covenant” with God, although only the Jews have it. Does anyone know anything about his Biblical studies? It seems he has none, and I have been looking for that in several places,….

    • I have spoken with Jonathan Cahn and have read his response to criticisms of his book and he vehemently denies holding to any form of Replacement Theology and speaks out against it. The problem is the apparent disconnect between what he says concerning his views and what he has written in The Harbinger which gives a completely different impression. The book doesn’t directly support traditional Replacement Theology, which says that the church is the new Israel in God’s program, with national Israel having no future – but it does give the impression that America is a new or second Israel. This is reinforced by the fact that so much of the book is focused on the fact that Israel did not heed God’s warnings and was judged – after which there is no mention of Israel’s restoration or any mention of modern day or future Israel. This combined with the citing of the early founders, the Founding Fathers – and especially the dream sequence, all give the unmistakeable impression that national Israel is finished and America, standing as a type of Israel is going to face a similar fate. This impression is so consistent and clear that even Mormon historians are appealing to The Harbinger to support their views of Anglo-Israelism – which says that Great Britain, and subsequently America, constitutes the 10 lost tribes of Israel that were dispersed after the Assyrian invasion in 722 BC (and this invasion is a major theme in the book). (Those 10 tribes were not lost and some remained in the land according to Scripture).

      As to Jonathan Cahn’s formal biblical training is concerned, that is not a big concern and I do not mention it in my book. I had not been able to find anything either, but I haven’t spent a lot of time researching this either. Although where someone goes to school can be an indicator of their overall theology, there are enough tools and resources available today that someone can become a good theologian in their own right from personal private study of the Scriptures and other material. The real test is ultimately only whether or not they handle the Scriptures correctly – and additionally, in this case, whether they present all the historical data accurately – neither of which is true in the case of The Harbinger.

  104. I agree regarding mr Cahn’s studies, but it would be good he had some sort of formal studies, especially because he is the main leader in his church and now a leader for many more through his book. I believe he has none, since there is no mention of it, as usually people do, in his book, nor in his related websites,…. I believe he believes in some sort of mild kabbalah (I have watched the not censored version of “the zohar speaks” that mr Cahn has in youtube).
    I have read some interviews made to him, and he says some things opposite to what he implies in the book or says more clearly in his 2-DVD set, so I am not surprised by what he told you regarding the Replacement Theology. A good book for Mormons indeed. The view people get, and have, is from the book and his DVDs, not from little known interviews, so people believe in replacement theology with America as the 2nd Israel (and I have heard Christians saying that after believing the book). Anyway if the book is to allegedly turn people to Christ, where is a clear explanation of the Gospel? Where the invitation to accept Christ as the personal Saviour? Just saying that America should turn to God, or else (using Israel as an example), does not make much effect on people, because since Genesis 3 people blame each other for what is wrong around.

  105. Hi Dave,

    Thank you for your response of Feb 26th at 11:00am.

    I contacted Charisma myself to see if they can/will put out something more official and I will let you know if/when I hear back from them. I do appreciate your honesty and willingness to set the record straight once you receive something that satisfies you that this is an official word from Charisma. That is all I ask.

    I would like to point out, however, that when you quoted what was on the legal document(s), nowhere on there that I’ve read does it state that the attorneys are representing Jonathan Cahn HIMSELF, only his publisher – Charisma. I can understand how it would be assumed that Jonathan Cahn – the man – had something to do with pursuing you legally and how it could be easily overlooked but a mistake like that – (and I am only claiming that you simply made a mistake here, not that it was done on purpose) – can influence people to slander him – and, I can tell you, already has. Can you, in the meantime, quote anything official on any of your legal documents that says the attorneys are representing Jonathan Cahn himself? If not, I will have to go with “innocent until proven guilty” in this case – as I have not known Rabbi Cahn to be anything less than a Spirit-filled man of God who knows the scriptures.

    As I stated in a private email to you, Jonathan Cahn never even pursued his publisher to publish his book – it was the other way around. He’s not the type to promote himself and refused others’ advice when they told him he needed to make a name for himself since most books are not published, etc. As a matter of fact, he rejected that advice outright. He simply prayed and
    said to God that this is HIS message so HE was going to have to get it out. He asked God to do the work… and He did. Brannon Howse, on one of his interviews with him, asked him how he picked his publisher but the show went to commercial break and they got off the subject so he never had a chance to explain. I would have liked to have heard a two-part interview because
    there was so much to cover and more could have been clarified without having to rush through everything. I listened to many interviews with Rabbi Cahn – ones that were not hostile toward him and where he was given the chance and the time to fully explain everything – and I thoroughly enjoyed them.

    So for me to believe he’s now turned into some type of Mr. Hyde and is salivating at the mouth to sue you because he would rather now serve money than God is very difficult for me to believe.

    But, again, I appreciate your willingness to set the record straight.

    • I have no doubt that this is the official word from Charisma. That is not my concern.(And it does, without question, include inaccuracies based on speculation.)

      And, yes, we have concrete reason to believe there is more to this, which we will deal with publicly at the appropriate time – and it has nothing to do with any significant departure from anything that has happened in the past.

      The caricature that “he’s now turned into some type of Mr. Hyde and is salivating…” is specifically designed to skew the conversation and is a straw man because neither I nor anyone else would paint that picture. That is an unfortunate, unnecessary and disingenuous tactic in the same vein of the review by “Ladybug” on Amazon which is also largely a straw man that represents a significant distortion of reality on several points.

      Once again, I confidently stand by what has been written.

  106. Hi Dave,

    I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree then… and I also stand by all that I have said. Let the LORD judge between us all.

  107. It’s so amazing how someone sets themselves up as being the
    Supreme Authority on everything. Actually it’s disgusting.
    There are many things in the Bible that can’t be totally
    explained. Whose to say God didn’t direct the writing of
    this book? YOU? Who are YOU? I know who you serve.
    I won’t be visiting your site again.

    • Emilie,

      I don’t consider myself an authority on anything. It is only the Word of God that is the authority and against which we are to test all things. That is the instruction the Lord has given us. That is why he gave pastors and teachers to the church so that we might teach the truth and warn against error.

      I don’t know if you read the article, or more importantly my book on this subject, but there are so many problems in the The Harbinger that it is fairly obvious that is it can’t be from God – God doesn’t make these kinds of mistakes. I have done nothing more than point out what the mistakes are – and I have tried to do so in a very fair and balanced way, acknowledging the good that The Harbinger has accomplished.

      If you know of any errors in anything I have written, I will be glad take a look at revising those things. We need to make sure we are dealing with facts and the truth rather than engaging in ad hominem arguments.

      I’m not sure whom you think I serve, but the desire of my heart for the last 30 years has been to serve the Lord ever since He saved me out of a terribly sinful life.

      I trust you will give this a bit more consideration before simply writing off the ABI website and ministry.

      Dave

  108. Strain out the gnat and swallow the camel.
    The Typical Pharisees response I say.

    • Mark,

      Would you mind elaborating a bit more concerning this being the response of a Pharisee?

      Are you not concerned that the Word of God has been mishandled, historical facts have been misrepresented and the gospel has been distorted and doesn’t even include the resurrection of Christ anywhere in the book?

      These are extremely serious problems for a book that claims to be a message from God and need to be dealt with.

      Dave

  109. Having just finished reading “The Harbinger” with my Bible at hand to verify the scriptures quoted, I find the author’s message real, compelling and no reason not to doubt his intent, or his warning, which should be clear to any one with an open mind. The ancient mystery was revealed in scripture, is not this one, from his book, any different, although its ending hasn’t be played out yet. And to think, we as a nation, could effect a good out come. itis that simple but difficut at the same time.

    • Hi Louis,

      I did the same thing when reading The Harbinger, carefully examining the Bible as I went – and I read The Harbinger multiple times and studied it for hours. There are significant biblical problems as well as clear historical problems. The overall call to repentance is much-needed – but the Word of God can’t be handled the way it is in The Harbinger. I don’t know if you’ve read this article, but it only touches on some of the many more problems I discuss in my book. Jonathan Cahn presents one side of the story he has created, but there is a much different side of the story that better corresponds with the Bible, history and current events. I would encourage you to withhold judgment until taking time to hear the other side of this very important issue.

      Dave

  110. Dave,
    You say there are significant biblical problems as well as clear historical problems with the book. Please elucidate, I am unsure of which you might be referring to. While I respect your judgement on withhold judgement on the ‘message’ provided in the book, the author himself says he is not ‘imparting’ a message but a warning. That is the problem I see with many, they cannot see what his warning is because it is being rejected out of human nature, not of disbelieve, I think. Again, just what is the other side of this very important issue, I want to be informed. Thank you.
    Lou

    • Lou,

      I enumerate a number of them in this article – which I assume you have read. These are very real problems. I go into a lot more detail in my book – and if you’re interested it is available for $7.50 in Kindle format and reduced price of $10.50 for the paperback version (not at all trying to make a sale, but just to say that the problems are serious and numerous enough to justify a whole book, making it difficult to go into much detail in a blog comment response – and I just want to let you know that the evidence is readily accessible if you’re interested).

      You can find the foreword and preface my book in an earlier blog here, on The Berean Call website and on their Facebook page, or I can email it to you in pdf format if you wish, just let me know). When you read particularly the preface you will see that I understand and agree with the message that America needs to repent, but that a specific warning from Isaiah 9:10 can be found as an exact template that has played out in the U.S. since 9/11 is not supported either biblically or historically. Again, my rejection of the book is not because of the call to repentance and is not coming out of human nature because I definitely agree with that.

      Examples of three major biblical problems are 1) dealing with Isaiah 9:10 completely independent of its biblical context (the preceding verses are not mentioned) which is the most basic and most egregious error a Bible teacher can make, 2) the application of the Jewish Shemitah (Sabbath year) to the world in general and America specifically, 3) failure to present the gospel in anything approaching a complete way in a chapter that is supposed to be dedicated to that in theory (neither that Christ died on the cross for our sins, nor that salvation is by grace through faith, nor “believe,” nor the resurrection of Christ are mentioned anywhere in that chapter or the book.

      The main historical errors include the fact that even upon just a little closer examination that none of the claimed harbingers form anything approaching the exact matches claimed in the book. For the most part, they aren’t even loose parallels.

      Since I have written at length about the other side of this important issue, the information is readily available to anyone who wishes to be more informed.

      Beyond what I have written there are a number of articles by others on the internet, including at least one that quotes very extensively from my book that are also helpful.

      As far as whether he believes he is imparting a message or a warning – I don’t think there’s any practical difference between the two given that he believes he has discovered and revealed an “ancient mystery” that no one has ever seen before in the Scriptures.

      This is not about Jonathan Cahn’s character, integrity or sincerity as a believer, a Bible teacher or pastor – it is only about whether he is right or wrong in most of his book.

      I hope this helps to clarify some of this.

      Dave

  111. I’m reading the book now.
    I just want to know…. what if he is correct? Do we truly have the right to not find a meaning
    that ‘could’ be prophetic? I hope 9:10 does not apply to America today, but I wonder. Considering the violence, over the top sexual content of almost everything, the rise of Islam and terrorism,
    the steadily decreasing morals, the twisting of every product advertisement into something that everyone needs…. the rise of a man that is president [sic] that does traitorous things and is trying to lead America in the very wrong direction. How can anyone doubt that God is or has abandoned us?

    • Hi John,

      Do you mean you’re reading The Harbinger, or my book? If you mean The Harbinger, I would encourage you to also read my book, because it pulls back the curtain and shows that it is impossible that he is right about this – on so many levels.

      It could very well be that we are or soon will be under judgment – but just as any other Gentile nation that would follow this path, not because of a prophecy in Isaiah 9:10 that was only for Israel or because America is in some sort of covenant relationship with the Lord.

      The “harbingers” are illusions – and the so-called parallels just do not exist.

      I go into this in great detail in my book, of which this article is an abridged version.

      If you have any specific questions, feel free to ask and I’ll do my best to answer them.

      Dave

  112. Hi Dave. I read your response and agree with what you’re saying.
    I get the feeling that you agree with me as far as since America (and other countries) has strayed
    so far and so quickly from what our (pretty much very religious) founding fathers thought when they created this country, and so carefully crafted our Constitution, that we are unraveling as a good country. I don’t pretend to be a Bible scholar, or even very knowledgeable about it, but I really feel that judgement from God is coming quickly from one direction, or many. America has been almost turned inside-out by both government parties. I fear that Armageddon, or a terrible life-ending event is inevitable, and that it’s too late to change.
    Thanks, John Tidball

  113. Jonathon Cahn has made the mistake of placing America as the elect nation which it is not
    Israel was the Lord’s elect nation who has specific promises made to her that do not apply to the church or any nation today In NT times God has called out a people, His elect from every tribe, nation and tongue, He does not promise these days to save nations though America has been greatly blessed in the modern world and has been mightly used to bring the Gospel to others, if anyone looks back on history they will see England was used in a similar way and the country who it was said the sun never set on is now quickly disintegrating into sin,chaos and ruin
    I’m Australian and I know when I was very young society was led by Christian principles though it did not make it a Christian nation The world has abandoned Biblical authority, shook their fist at God and are being turned over to their sinful desires If America has any special significance in all this it is because of the blessings that were bestowed on her, otherwise America is no different than any other nation
    God will turn back to Israel when the time of the Gentiles is over and prophecy specifically for Israel will be fulfilled, thus all Israel will be saved

  114. Many well thought and well meaning comments here. Sometimes though, in our accuracy of detail we miss the basic point. Starting with the Plymouth Bay colony the history of America’s founding shows it was indeed dedicated to God and seen as a “stepping stone” for bringing the gospel to the whole world. Our “ivy league” schools were even founded for that same purpose. Though well documented such has been at best willfully ignored and at worst intentionally suppressed. In this “calling” and original intention to be a “light to the nations” America uniquely shares a commonality with Israel. It should not be difficult for the unbiased historian and bible scholar to see the national parallels Jonathan Cahn illumines for us and get his message right. Why all the fuss? Let’s not miss the point!

    • Hi George,

      Thanks you for taking time to read my article and comment. Some of your concerns are more fully addressed in my book, The Harbinger: Fact or Fiction? Obviously, the length of my article, of necessity, prevented me from dealing with everything that required adressing.

      I don’t think I missed any of the basic points of the book and in fact fully acknowledge them in my book. However, whatever happened at Plymouth Bay Colony and whatever they intended, they were biblical wrong on several counts. As well-meaning as they may have been, their actions did not place America in covenant with God. It is true that God has blessed America in many ways, which contributed to the ability of many Americans and churches to be involved with spreading the gospel. I would not go so far as to say that America shares a unique commonality with Israel – but rather that it has more in common with ancient Nineveh as a gentile nation. Even a cursory examination of my book makes it easy for an unbiased historian and Bible scholar to see that much of what Jonathan Cahn has manufactured to look like paralells are in fact not even close approximations, let alone the exact matches that he has consistently claimed for well over a year. It is, unfortunately, a grand illusion that needs to be exposed. I would go further to suggest that rather than missing the point, the fact that so many have accepted his message shows how desperately this country is in trouble because so many well-meaning Christians don’t even understand the Word of God well enough to see that Cahn is the one who has missed many points and millions have almost blinded followed him.

  115. its all b.s. like all religions. there is just us – no god, jesus, soul, or anything else ‘supernatural’. it is up to us to do the right thing, for the right reasons.

    • Hi Rich,

      Why exactly would you comment on this article in the first place?

      Are you sure you’re right? What probability would you place on you being right?

      What if you’re wrong?

      Have you ever done anything right for the wrong reason?
      Have you ever done anything wrong for the right reason?
      Have you ever done anything wrong – and you just can’t quite figure out the reason?

      Have you ever done thought experiments to test your hypothesis? You do realize it is just a hypothesis you’re operating from.

      We’re not talking about me right now – just you. So, just anticipating your response, don’t turn it back on me.

      I know I’m operating from faith – but it is a reasonable faith.

      You’re also operating from faith – but your faith is in your ability to be right on this issue.

      Have you ever been wrong about anything? Ever? Have you ever thought you were right about something – and even argued about it – and you ended up being wrong?

      You need to think through this a bit. You’re in a very precarious logical position.

      Dave

  116. Dave,

    What i will say is that, we need to change our ways. Right, wrong, or indifferent Rabbi Cahn brings up a good point about a Generation straying so far from God. We are out of control and so consumed with our daily lives that most of us forget about the simpleness of life and religion. I am glad you feel so strongly about his book, but could it be for the wrong reasons. If his book get people to turn back to god that it is all for the right reason. I hope both your book and his serve the same purpose to help drive religion and god back into this country. What type of country is that God is banned from our schools and our general way of life. We have to play nice to those who don’t believe and respect there differences. Is this what Jesus would have done? I think not. We all need to change.

    • Chris,

      Thanks for taking the time to read my article and comment.

      I would encourage you to think a little more about what seems to be your suggestion that it doesn’t really matter so much whether Jonathan Cahn or I are right or wrong, but that it turns people to God.

      If I understand you correctly, then you’re basically saying, “Whatever works is fine.”

      This is called pragmatism – and is not something we find promoted in Scripture.

      The ends do not justify the means. Although God is free to use the most evil things to ultimately accomplish his will, that does not mean that we are free to employ evil that good might result.

      Are you suggesting that it is not a problem if we mishandle Scripture and mislead people concerning historical facts as long as people get saved? Yet, that is what Jonathan Cahn has done. That God might choose to use this anyway does not mean that no one should hold Cahn accountable for this.

      Dave

  117. Not long ago I was in Jonathan Cahn’s church. Worship was great, people friendly, and an associate pastor’s sermon good. Yet, Mr. Cahn’s sermons were different. I realized that he gives true-false mix info, and that his most used word is “mystery”, followed by “secret” and “hidden”, terms which constantly appeal to the fallen nature of man in his search for the hidden, against Dt. 29:29.
    In one paper of the church there was a photo of him looking up, like in an ecstasy, but no word of his studies. I met people who wanted to know about nothing, but his teachings, which have become untouchable, almost sacred, and his book “the Harbinger” is seen as the last hope for America and the last chance given by God to be “again” a Christian nation, especially after his talk at the Presidential breakfast on Jan. 21.
    I realized that in his sermons he speaks in a captivating and fast way, so there is no time to ponder over anything, only time to be amazed at what he says. Many times he tries to lure people by using intriguing titles in his works, like “the Harbinger” or in sermons “the mystery of…” Then he often gives a touch of mystery/intrigue to Bible verses, and finally “explains” them, raising amazement in people, who always queue up to buy his CDs/DVDs. He makes up “mysteries” misinterpreting and/or misapplying Scripture, and often changes meaning of words, e.g. “witness” (vs. Dt. 19:15) and Shemitah (vs. Dt. 15:1-5) in “the Harbinger”, or twists history, to make them fit into his Bible interpretation. With this particular way of being “revealing” Scripture for years, he finally touched sensitive American issues, like 9/11, American history and the increase of ungodliness, in his best-selling book, with an intriguing title, as expected from this “mystery man”. His book and its DVD-set may seem awesome truth at first, until one starts to scratch the surface.

    To write it, first he heard high profile politicians quoting Is. 9:10, and, believing that they were (are) the spiritual descendants of the allegedly Christian founding fathers, he tried to fit in several Biblical concepts (e.g. witness, Shemitah) by twisting their meanings, to make his book a “prophetical warning” from God.
    He does not openly say that he is a prophet, but gives statements about his book to mean that he is. A man of God neither twists God’s Word, history or meaning of words (see Mt 24:11), nor is called a rabbi (Mt. 23:8), nor lies (e.g. a worldwide Shemitah in Sept 2008).
    I have heard and known several Bible teachers, and none would agree with the misinterpretation of Is. 9:10, or Shemitah, for instance.
    In the 2 DVD-set based on “the Harbinger”, Mr. Cahn explains himself much clearer than in the book. In the 2nd DVD, minute 24, is one of his most obvious false statements: (on 9/11 2008) “debts and loans were wiped away. Financial accounts were wiped away… over the world, there was a colossal Shemitah wiping out the financial accounts”; and in minute 26 “(On 9/17, 2001), the greatest stock market crash in history up to that time”, yet every economist knows that that was in 1929. The Biblical term of Shemitah (Dt. 15:1-5) was to be done by Israel, not to be forced worldwide by God, as he said it happened in September 2008, but it did not, so this is a false testimony given by Jonathan Cahn. That America is the 2nd Israel, as he says, is a groundless statement, both Biblically and historically. Another false statement is that terrorists of 9/11 were spiritually descendants of the Assyrians, when actually they were of Muhammad’s teachings, as they left recorded. Witnessing in the Bible (Dt. 19:15), or in a dictionary, has nothing to do with high officials quoting Scripture.
    The saddest part is how his book has overwhelmed so many Christians, which shows their shallowness in Bible interpretation and in knowledge of American history, and also their gullibility.
    People in general are attracted to anything that seems to offer hope. Many American Christians think that that HOPE is “the Harbinger” (Prov. 14:12, 16:25). The Bible says about the Last Days we are living now, for the whole world, including America: 2 Tim 3:1-5, Mt 24:3,4, Rev 16:14. The HOPE for America and the world is that the true church gets purified (1 P 4:17), and does massive prayer and evangelism, not twisted Bible interpretations.

  118. Well, I read down to Aug. 9, 2012 and first of all I’m impressed how you respectfully respond to the all the comments. I’m working on a novel with a Christian worldview. My greatest fear is being picked apart by all the doctrine Nazis out there. All books written by men have bones in them. It’s like eating fish. Chew carefully, enjoy the meat and spit out the bones. I think Cahn’s book has some good meat in it too. I enjoyed the meat and think I spit out most of the bones. If we approach all books that way, I think we’d all be less critical when we get to the bones. Warn others about the bones, but don’t throw out the whole fish. Maybe the reason you’re so gracious is you realize there will be bones in your book too. Hope so anyway.
    Paul Little

    • Hi Paul,

      Thanks for the kind comment.

      I assume you read my article – and if so, you see that I acknowledge the good stuff in Cahn’s book. But there are several things that make his book different than simply a novel. Had it just been a novel then no one would have said anything about it and it would not have created the greatest controversy within the church that anyone can remember in decades.

      The first major problem is that it is not primarily a novel. At the beginning of the book, the author’s note is that it is all real – meaning that the fiction is just a framework for telling the reader what he believes are facts. This is demonstrated by the companion DVD, “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment” – which is the same content minus the fictional framework.

      The second major problem is that his biblical problems are not just minor details or even more significant doctrinal differences as exist between denominations – it is a wholesale mishandling of the Word of God at multiple points.

      The third major problem is that there is a serious misrepresentation of historical facts and trying to create parallels between 8th century BC Israel and America.

      There are other problems, as well – but when there’s more bones than meat, there’s a serious problem.

      A few months ago I was speaking at a pastor’s conference in the Philippines and discussing the matter of biblical discernment. Your eating fish illustration is one that I used there because they eat a LOT of fish in the Philippines – and told them that this is a very bad strategy – and asked two questions that really drove home the point to them:

      1. Have you ever swallowed bones you didn’t mean to swallow?

      2. Do you think you’ve ever swallowed bones that you didn’t realize you swallowed?

      Here’s the thing we need to keep in mind concerning Christian fiction. It is either fictional theology (which is heresy) or theological fiction – meaning that fiction is simply being used as a vehicle to teach theology – and in your case, you will be teaching a Christian worldview, which is simply a theological grid through which we understand life / reality.

      Although fiction might serve as a popular genre for communicating to a broad audience, if we’re communicating truth in fictional form (as Jesus did with parables) we are obligated before the Lord to be accurate. The story can be anything we choose, but the theological truth we communicate must be accurate – and it is no different than preaching a sermon and using an illustration to make our theological point.

      So, if we put something out there with the purpose of communicating a Christian worldview, we can’t hide behind the idea that “it’s just fiction.”

      I don’t doubt that there are some issues in my book as well – but even as the founder of a Bible institute and a Bible teacher of over 25 years, I had three theological readers, three editors (who are among the best in the business) and have a total of eight endorsements from other Bible teachers who went through my book before it was published. This is a theological gauntlet that few books ever go through. That doesn’t mean that it is completely free from error – but I took every possible step to make sure it was as accurate as possible.

      So, while I wouldn’t necessarily discourage you from writing a novel with a Christian worldview – I would suggest a great deal of caution and that you make sure you have at least a couple of very good theologians go through it first to make sure you have it right and can defend what you say biblically – because when you publish you’re taking up the mantle of a teacher and the Bible teaches that teachers are held to a higher standard of accountability.

      I’m not gracious simply because I think my book might have problems. I try to be gracious because that is what believers should be like. Whether I’m always successful is a different question, unfortunately.

      Dave

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