Tag: Bible Prophecy

TRUMP: THE EYE OF THE STORM

Even Trump himself, when campaigning for election, was unaware of exactly what his attempt to become the US president was going to unleash…

O ye of weak knees and uncertain disposition: be warned that I do hold strong views on our political climate and our future, herein represented..!

Trump’s election and presidency, as tumultuous as it has been and will continue to be, is actually the eye of the hurricane of current history, though it may not feel like that to him. The tumult has been forced upon him and upon all of us as a backlash from all those in high places whose wishes were upset by a pesky election. Under the former “leader of the free world”, President Obama, the United States was being changed “fundamentally”. It was intentionally being weakened, in preparation for what the grand schemers of the world have in store for us all. Trump’s success, first in being elected, and then in making the economy boom against all prognostication, was the opposite of what they wanted, hence the rabid and hateful opposition to him since the day he descended the escalator to announce his intention to run for office.

How could Trump have known that he would be at the center of all the forces vying for the hearts and minds of the Western world-whose unseen, leading instigator is the Enemy of mankind himself? Globalists, socialists, communists, self-serving politicians, anti-Christian religious zealots, worldviews, moral-haters, the uninformed, the misinformed, West-haters, God-haters, plotters, the disgruntled, the cynical, the lawless, the envious, the super-rich who have no interest in what the voters want: all fight and scratch and kick and scream and scheme to remove Trump from their path so that their own ends can be achieved in the world. Yet there he is, for now, protected from their claws by the One who holds all of history-and the future-in His own hands.

Please don’t misunderstand me- I know that Trump is no holy man, and no savior on his own. Instead he is the man of the moment: the man being used by God to temporarily hold up the movement towards world government; the man chosen to be the thorn in the side of those surreptitiously taking us where most of us never wanted to go.

And what of the future? America is said to be the world’s “great experiment”; the “republic if you can keep it” (Benjamin Franklin). Its rise is the first time in all of history where the right to associate, to speak one’s mind, to pursue happiness and prosperity, to have a say in the running of the country, and to practice religion would be protected-in principle if not in practice. If you’re not a believer in the words of God as recorded in the Bible you may think that humankind will find a way without the founding principles of America; that ultimately humanity will solve its problems and that freedom will reign due to reason and correct “education”. I am not of that variety. It’s my conviction that humanity would have destroyed itself many times over by now, given the freedom to do so. 

God’s plan as spelled out in Scripture has been severely misrepresented within the Church. I have been one of those misinformed. But here, very briefly, is what I see for planet earth when considering what the word of God is clear on, mixed with a measure of my own informed observation and speculation…

The Bible says that the nation of Israel would be re-born after a long period of time during which the people of Israel would wander the earth. That has happened in recent decades. It says that the nation will boom and prosper in the short time it is free to do so. It would be hated by the nations of the world, and its ancient capital claimed by nations around it. The scene of Armageddon is in the land of Israel. Trump has temporarily halted the progress of those around the world-the EU, socialist politicians in America, and people of a certain religion-working to wrest Jerusalem from the Jews. This is one of the big reasons he is hated by the globalists, who are also in control of most of our media-a media which should be free and impartial but which has a determined agenda.

Globalists want us all to sing cum-bi-a together, forget our Christian beliefs and our patriotic leanings, give our money to them and to those who have poor political systems and philosophies, and dismantle our borders, so that all the above can be achieved without a struggle. Judeo-Christian morality is a road block to the socialist dream of governing us all into subservience while they hold all the power and all the money. Trump has also put a few wrenches in the works on that front. Once Trump is gone, for whatever reason, a certain religion is to be favored over the Christian faith because its more dedicated members will deal with the problematic obstructionist Christians. Obama had already worked on that effort, so that as Isis raged across large areas of the middle east, mainly unchecked, many of us wondered if this was the prophesied time beginning.

Once globalists and socialists achieve their political hegemony, world “peace” will be imposed upon us; a sort of “pax-anti-Christiana’, fulfilling prophesies of the “man of lawlessness”; the embodiment of the Enemy of God and man on the earth. Their dreams are as futile as standing on the shore of the ocean and telling the tide not to come in.

We’re all in for a pretty rough ride, once God’s restraining hand is taken away. And lest you think I’m making it all up:

And now you know what is holding him back, so that he may be revealed at the proper time. For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming (2 Thessalonians 2:6-8).

God is God, and His plan, and His plan only, will succeed.

RAPTURE 7: FAULTY IMMINENCE- CONTINUED

Last time I  discussed the hopeful but faulty application of Jesus’ words “You do not know the day or the hour” to the pre-tribulation rapture theory. This post, excerpt 7 of my book*  continues on from there…

Dr_Martens,_black,_old

The “imminence” view assumes that the starting moment of the tribulation, including the very day and the time of day, could be universally known by all believers if they were not already raptured. It assumes that the tribulation will be exactly seven years long from that point, to the day and the hour. It expects that the mid-point event of Antichrist’s revealing will be exactly on the middle day and the middle hour of that period. It presumes that those occurrences will be so obvious to everyone on earth that the date and time of the visible return of Jesus could be marked on calendars and devices so that alarms would sound at the moment Jesus pierces the sky in power and glory. While I agree that God means exactly what he says in scripture, I suggest that all of the above assumptions are not correct.

The possibility doesn’t seem to have occurred to pre-tribulation believers that we may not know anything about the covenant of Daniel’s 70th week being “confirmed”, if indeed it is still future. It could be an agreement made behind closed doors: a secret pact or treaty; a private and probably sly resolution to achieve something big. News of it may not reach the ears of the public for a few days, or weeks, or months, with no mention of exactly when it occurred. When is this covenant mentioned in New Testament prophesies of end times? The answer is that it isn’t. Paul said that the first-not the second-unmistakable sign that the Day of the Lord is coming would be a “falling away” (2 Thess. 2:3) which surely can’t be fixed to a time or a day. The second would be the appearance of Antichrist in the Jerusalem temple. Paul didn’t  mention a “covenant” or “peace deal” as a sign of the Day of the Lord, but only that people will be talking peace and safety when destruction suddenly overcomes them (1 Thess. 5:3). Why didn’t Paul tell the Thessalonians “That day cannot come, until the Covenant, spoken of by Daniel, is signed”? He was speaking of  a general false sense of security in his first letter, not a specific event to look for.

So even if  Paul did have Daniel’s “covenant” in mind here, there is still no mention of the rapture being years before this sudden destruction, or for that matter, before destruction at all. It is “the Day of the Lord” which will come “like a thief in the night”, not the rapture (1 Thess 5:2).

Similarly, Jesus said that the first unmistakable sign of “great distress” would be Antichrist standing in the Holy Place of the temple. He didn’t mention any covenant or peace deal, which would certainly be a very useful and significant sign for anyone-even if it were for a Jewish remnant only.

Compounding these facts are the mysteriously different number of days given to Daniel to accommodate the fulfillment of last-days events (Daniel 12:11-12). The difference in these dates is something of a mystery even to the “experts”. Notice also that in this scripture in Daniel’s book, relating specifically to end times, there’s no actual mention of the appearance of the Messiah: it isn’t there. Exactly what happens at the end of each of those time periods isn’t clear, and exactly which of those days-if either of them- Jesus will launch from heaven in power and glory we do not know. It may not be on either of those days. It may be many days after or before the exact end of that seven year or forty-two month period. The day and the hour of Christ’s coming isn’t given away by Daniel, even to those who might see the covenant of Daniel’s prophecy being signed.

When Jesus said, “No one knows about that day or hour” in Matthew 24:36, which “day or hour” had He been speaking of? Which “day” did they not know of? In the previous verses He had been speaking solely of the events of the tribulation and of His physical appearing for the whole world to see (verses 15-35). He was referring to the “Day of the Lord”, the time of tribulation, of his coming, and of the restoration of all things, when he said we could not know. He was not speaking of a pre-tribulation rapture.

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Was Jesus in his Olivet Discourse really saying that it would be a Jewish remnant who would see the events of the tribulation, and not the Church? He was, in truth, talking to his original and closest disciples who, although certainly Jewish, became the first born-again members of Christ’s body-the Church-on the day of Pentecost. If the theory that the Olivet Discourse was for a Jewish remnant only were correct, why did Jesus keep speaking to his disciples as thought they would see the events he was foretelling, considering that they constituted the first Christian Church: saved, baptized and filled with the Spirit? Were his first-century disciples not eligible for the rapture? Jesus kept using the word “you”, not “they” when speaking to his first representatives and first members of his Church. They were, after all, co-founders of the Church after Jesus himself-not outsiders or Jews who would only find the Messiah upon his return. He told them what to look for as signs of the tribulation beginning and taking hold on the world. He told them to look out for deception and false Christs, and for the revealing of Antichrist on the temple mount. 

Perusing online “evidence” used to defend the doctrine of pre-tribulation theory through imminence, I found the offerings very weak in terms of scriptural evidence and logic. I also found that it’s common for verses to be used without reference to their context. One such offering was a single verse from Luke’s gospel, where Jesus said, echoing quotes from Matthew’s gospel:

You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him” (Luke 12:40).

In this passage Jesus was speaking about a master-servant relationship. For the good servant, his master’s surprise return would be good news;

It will be good for those servants whose master finds them ready” (verse 38).

Just as a house owner needs to be ready for a thief, Jesus was saying in verse 40 that we too must be ready. Reading a little further sheds some light on the full meaning of the verse about the Son of Man coming at an unexpected hour. Here Jesus switches his analysis to a servant whose master is away and who mistreats his own servants. So when the master returns, says Jesus:

The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. He will cut him in pieces and assign him a place with the unbelievers” (12:46).

Here the wicked servant is the one taken by surprise by the coming of his master. His master comes on a day and at an hour that he was not expecting. The surprise appearance of the master is not a rapture event, it’s a judgment event! The master came at an unexpected day and hour as a judge! This passage is not about the rapture at all, as one website I read is claiming-it’s about God’s interest in our faithfulness. It’s about how we live out our faith rather than living as we did before we professed faith.

Other verses commonly offered as evidence for the pre-tribulation rapture are those speaking of Jesus’ soon coming. For example, somehow James’ words, “the Lord’s coming is near” and “the Judge is standing at the door” (James 5:9) are seen as evidence for an imminent rapture. If we read the whole verse we see that James was really speaking of faithfulness and sincerity of faith. If “the Judge is standing at the door”, we need to take this as a warning to be true, so that we are not judged with the world, just as the wicked servant who did not expect his master will be. Such verses are not valid evidence for a pre-tribulation rapture.

Another verse used as evidence is Revelation 1:1, which tells us that the events of the Revelation “must soon take place”. I agree that these events will occur quickly and will not be expected when they begin, but John is speaking here of the entire prophecy: the entirety of the book of Revelation. Logically, this means that stars falling from heaven, and the mark of the beast, and the new heaven and new earth are also happenings which “must soon take place”. Therefore the rapture can’t be identified as being any “sooner” than anything else in Revelation, and the book’s first verse is not speaking specifically of rapture!

One Matthew chapter 24 verse used to support the imminence of a pre-tribulation raptur is this one:

No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father” (verse 36).

Which day and hour was Jesus speaking of-was it the time of the rapture? No, he hadn’t even mentioned a rapture, and certainly not a pre-tribulation rapture. He’d been giving an overview of all the events to come, culminating in his visible, physical return in power and glory. This makes even more relevant Peter’s statement that “the day of the Lord will come like a thief” (2 Peter 3:10). Perhaps Jesus was answering the questions of his disciples from a minute or two before, when they wanted to know when the temple would be destroyed, and what would be the sign of his coming and of the end of the age (Matthew 24:3). Jesus answered that “no one knows…” Not even he knew, at that time. However, he gave them, and us, the signs of his coming, which, by definition, would in the future demonstrate that the time was near, once they began to happen.

Even then, people will still not know the exact day or hour. Even then they will not know until it actually happens. They will know they are in the general time, but they will not know the day or the hour. Therefore, Jesus’ talk of believers not knowing the day or hour has nothing to do with a pre-tribulation rapture: it’s about the events of the tribulation and Jesus’ visible, physical return in power and glory.

* My book entitled “ALL LEFT BEHIND: THE CASE AGAINST THE PRE-TRIBULATION RAPTURE”, is available in paperback and e-book at Amazon. However, the entire book will eventually be excerpted or summarized here. And lucky you-you’re getting an up-dated edit, which will all be one day published as a new version of the book. Thanks for reading.

SETTING DATES FOR THE FULFILLMENT OF BIBLE PROPHECY

Here’s the article which many ministries-benefiting from your desire to know, and living an exciting life on your money and their speculation-aren’t giving you…

THE WESTERN WALL

One of the worst things a student or teacher of Bible prophecy can do is to set dates for its fulfillment. Having said that, I think there’s a place for asking if what we’ve been believing about end-times events is really true. This question, I think, affords and even requires a little ball-park speculation on the matter of timing. Yes-I’m going to set some dates! This article has few Bible references. I’ve listed relevant references elsewhere, and will do so again soon.

When we think about the possibility that we’re near the time of the return of Jesus Christ, the most compelling reason to believe that we are is the modern state of Israel. No, I’m not one of those fooled by replacement theology.

In 70 AD the legions of Rome destroyed Judea and Jerusalem, and expelled any Jews they didn’t kill from the ancient homeland. Against all odds and with no conscious intent to fulfill prophecy, but only to avoid another holocaust, the modern state of Israel was established officially in 1948. In 1967 Israelis regained control over all Jerusalem. Mirroring Bible prophecy, Israel since 1948 has very quickly grown and prospered. Its population has increased, with Jews immigrating there from all corners of the world. Its determination to hold on to the capital against the will of the world has been successful.

REMAINS OF THE SECOND JEWISH TEMPLE, WITH ISLAMIC DOME OF THE ROCK BEHIND IT

Also in line with prophecy the foretold enemies of the nation have been claiming the land belongs to them and not to Jews. Only the election of Donald Trump has temporarily halted the world’s schemes to remove Israelis, or at least professing Jews, from their ancient capital. Once he’s gone from power, for whatever reason, you can expect the pressure from all sides-including and perhaps especially the U.S., to continue apace, eventually culminating in a military assault as predicted in such Bible books as Zechariah.

Some commentators have mistakenly had the opinion that the current regathering of Israel cannot be the predicted one because, they assert, the Bible says Israel must be spiritually cleansed and holy as a prerequisite to restoration. To the careful reader, the Bible tells a different story: cleansing will not take place until the Messiah shows up to defend the nation at a time of extreme crisis.

TIME LIMITS, TIME CLUES

However, there are two potential problems with the entire Israel regathering “scenario” (to use a prophetic cliche). Perhaps they aren’t problems at all-perhaps they are in fact further indication that the time of fulfillment is very near.

1: THE “SECOND” RETURN FROM EXILE

The first problem concerns a Biblical limit to the number of returns of the nation from total exile. Isaiah wrote:

In that day the Lord will reach out his hand a second time to reclaim the surviving remnant of his people…he will assemble the scattered people of Judah
    from the four quarters of the earth (Isaiah 11:11-12).

In the Bible only two returns are allowed from total exile. The first occurred when ancient Israel and then Judah were invaded and carried off by the Assyrians and the Babylonians. The second return began officially in 1948.

The idea that the current return is bogus and the real one is yet future just doesn’t make sense. If the miraculous events of the past several decades and the struggles between Israel and their neighbors and the world are not those prophesied, they are an incredibly realistic dress-rehearsal. Also, believing that the real return is yet future, we would have to expect the current inhabitants of the land to be driven out by some huge war or other disaster. The land would have to be invaded and claimed by enemies again, and then left empty and waste for a long period of time. Israelis there now would once again have to be dispersed to all corners of the earth for a long period of time.

West_Bank_&_Gaza_Map_2007_(Settlements)
WEST BANK AND GAZA

How many times in the course of human history can the incredible set of events prophesied actually play out, in such an amazing series of what would have to be “coincidences”, as they have over the last several decades? It seems to me that either the 20th C restoration of Israel-the current one-must be the second regathering spoken of in Isaiah, or we would have to accept that the prophets Isaiah and Ezekiel and others were wrong, and therefore didn’t speak the word of God at all. In that case, no Biblical scripture could be trusted.

Also, when you consider other conditions in our world at this time in relation to Biblical prophesies, it’s clear that there’s much more than just coincidence at work here.

2: THE INVASION OF A LAND RECENTLY REGATHERED

The second time-issue concerns a Biblical limit on the time which can transpire between the regathering of Jews to the land and the judgment of the nations. Prophecies in Ezekiel foretell an international assault on Israel and the Middle-East in general ending in God’s clear and decisive intervention, after which the whole world will know there is a God who is still the Protector of Israel. This assault is said to come:

…against a land that has recovered from war, whose people were gathered from many nations to the mountains of Israel, which had long been desolate (Ezekiel 38:8).

This and other passages indicate that Israel will be invaded by nations who recognize that its regathering is recent. So the vital question is, just how long a time period, scripturally-speaking, could be considered “recent”? Here’s my theory.

First, Israel, says the prophecy, would boom in population and in economic success. This would naturally take some time, but it has happened in just a few decades.

Israel, (that is, Jews and those from the northern tribes who had joined with Judah) were expelled from the land for seventy years (Ezra 1:1). God had told Isaiah many centuries BC that Ephraim was “about to” be judged by Assyria (Isaiah 8:7 NIV). That “about to” period was sixty-five years (7:8). We Bible students know that to the Lord “a thousand years is as a day”, so using that scale of what time seems like to God the “recent” period from the regathering of Israel to the invasion could be many thousands of years.

However, those two terms-“recent” and “thousands of years” don’t fit together well to us mortals, and the invading force of end-times certainly wouldn’t see an event thousands of years previous as being “recent”. God’s words, “sixty-five years” were just about meaningful as a short time period to Isaiah. The “recent” time period in Ezekiel must be seen as being truly recent to humans.

I’m not setting dates by saying that sixty-five years is the time period we must look for, but it seems logical that it’s a “ball-park” number. It could actually be fifty, or seventy, eighty, or more. At what point would the regathering of Israel not be considered by its invaders to be “recent” any more? And when exactly would the “prophetic clock” start ticking: 1948? 1967? Perhaps it would start when the majority of Jews had returned from the nations-perhaps the year 1990, or 2000, or 2010.

We could create a maximum time of fulfillment so that, say, seventy-five years from the dwindling of returnees to the land from the nations would take us to the year 2085. This would be the very latest date we could reasonably expect the prophecies of Ezekiel to be fulfilled. Alternatively, If we add sixty-five years to 1967, the year Israelis regained their ancient capital which figures so highly in last-days prophecy, we get the year 2032…only thirteen years from now.

 

 

 

 

 

 

WHAT’S WRONG WITH BEING A WORLD CITIZEN ANYWAY?

Someone famous said not too long ago, if you don’t have borders you don’t have a nation…

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That, of course, is the goal of many now in positions of power: they don’t want nation states anymore. They want us all to be “world citizens”. For the most part, their goal up to now has been worked toward surreptitiously, by maintaining the outward appearance of nation states but by demolishing the sovereignty and independence of those states. Just look at the EU, already a pre-global governance power, with some in its sway only now waking up to what’s been going on.

This dream of removing the “ancient boundary stones” and founding a supreme power over all assumes that the ultimate human authority will be a just and fair one: a very large and very optimistic assumption. But if it’s not just and fair, who would we go to to remedy the situation? Most of us already see our governments as being out of touch, out of reach and uncaring, and making a lot of wrong decisions. We think that because for the most part it’s true. And even when we do get a politician who cares about the people and who isn’t self-serving, he’s smothered by other politicians and media people who want to maintain the status quo and the direction dictated by their own agenda.

There’s one thorny little problem in the whole idea of achieving a just and fair society: human nature. From the very first spat and assertion of one man’s will over another, as imagined in my previous post, “WHERE FREEDOM IS”, human government has been attempting to consolidate power and influence: what good has it done us up to this point? When do we ever, ever ever ever ever, ever ever ever…(for any length of time) get a government which is fair and just? The answer is “never”. So what makes anyone think a world government is going to be any better?

We’re told by those who would benefit-so they think-from consolidation, that just and enlightened elites, with a little help and guidance from the media who are now really another branch of government, not elected and unaccountable, will choose leaders who will be just and wise and fair and beneficent, and so everything will work out. Plato had that idea-2500 years ago. He said that a just society should be controlled and led by an elite band of philosophers, all-wise and all-knowing decision makers, while the rest of us -essentially the working rabble-carry out their will and roll around in unending joy, satisfaction and ecstasy. Kant and Hegel also were convinced that humanity would eventually come up trumps. I intend no pun here, because our current president, bravely battling the movement towards world authority almost alone, is definitely not what they hoped for, hence the frenzy of hatred and falsehoods against him.

Has it happened yet? Have the elites come up trumps-ever? Do you really think it will happen? Some people of the John Lennon variety actually do. They think that humans are basically good, and that we only need to have the right conditions and the right leaders, and Utopia will be achieved. Good luck with that.

If we think government is out of touch and out of range and out of control now, what makes us think that a world body will be any less so? Surely, it will be more out of touch, more out of control, more monolithic, more elite and aloof? Not only so, but huge decisions will be made by those totally out of our reach which will not be in our interests.

Scripture envisions, predicts and prophesies just such a world authority in which the enemy of society (there always has to be an “enemy” to deflect criticism of government) will be the Christian, and the Jew. Such a view is already present within the United Nations, and within the movement pushing for an end to borders and national sovereignty.

THE BIBLE PROPHECY EXPERT IN THE MIRROR

I’ve studied Bible prophecy for 37 years, and in that time I’ve become increasingly disillusioned with those claiming to be “prophecy experts”…

REMAINS OF THE SECOND JEWISH TEMPLE, WITH ISLAMIC DOME OF THE ROCK BEHIND IT

One by one, the most influential people, the biggest names in Bible prophecy, have proved themselves to me and to many others to be painfully wrong and mistaken. They get entrenched in some kind of prophetic political correctness and refuse to budge from it for fear of denying their faith and of going against the grain of current interpretation. Even the big-wigs, those with international names and a list of formal qualifications a mile long, say and write things which can be shown to be wrong by anyone with discernment, an open mind and an open Bible.

Perhaps it’s understandable, though frustrating, that the most common words and phrases emitted by such people for decades include the following: the stage is being set; it looks like; probably; just about to happen; fulfillment; on the horizon.

Of course, interpreting Bible prophecy can be a tricky pass-time, but it doesn’t have to be. The mistake so many make is in attempting to force their faulty ideas into present-day events and future ones.

Whenever I write on Bible prophecy I get fewer views than I do on any other subject. I see the reason for that to be the fact that people are so numbed to it all by all the many false predictions made in over-confidence, the ridiculous non-Biblical event and date-setting, and sometimes the hands grasping for money which “we badly need to continue this vital ministry”. Ha! I can write here and reach people all around the world, without spending or asking for a penny…why can’t the experts?

Why does it matter? It matters because there are huge numbers of people in the West who see that the world must indeed be headed towards what has been foretold in the Bible, or at least towards some sort of date with destiny, but who are either badly misinformed or uninformed, and fail to ” search the scriptures”. There are millions of others who have no knowledge at all of what is down the road for planet earth, and need to be warned with correct information.

So don’t get me wrong-I’m not mocking the idea of the Second Coming. In fact I’m convinced in my own mind that it certainly is coming…soon. But what does “soon” mean in this context? Does it mean next year, next decade, or in another thousand years or so?

And what gives me the right to find fault with the experts? Who am I and where did I learn my theology and get my ordination? The answer to that is simple: God has not commissioned those self-proclaimed experts to pass on the message while forbidding the rest of us from figuring it all out for ourselves. As Vernon McGee said, God put the cookies on the bottom shelf so that everyone could reach them. The experts are no more “right” than we can be if we simply look into Scripture and look at our world.

As in the dark days when the Bible could only be read in Latin and interpreted by the “experts” in the Church, so now we have such people and their admirers in the Christian media claiming to be the proper proponents of truth while the rest of us…. the ignorant masses… need to pay attention to them and believe every word they say. That’s not God’s truth. We have every right, as believers, to test what we hear and to hunt down the truth for ourselves. In fact we’re obligated to do so. I’ve done plenty of it over the years, and I’ve concluded that there are no experts that I fully trust now. Test everything, I say. Either they’re in it for the money or the prestige, or because they don’t want to have to go out and get a proper job. Or perhaps they’re just plain wrong.

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