The power behind the hurricanes

Twelve years ago, Hurricane Katrina hit the Atlantic coast. Winds as high as 174 mph left 1,833 dead in its wake, along with $108 billion in property damages.

Before the costliest hurricane in American history arrived, I had a dream. It was a clear warning from God. It was not heeded before the hurricane struck, and it has not been heeded to this day.

I saw that many hurricanes were destined for North America and the Caribbean, bringing heartbreaking death and devastation.

In my dream, I was high above the storms looking down. I saw an armada of tall ships proceeding along the same path as the hurricanes, which I thought was very foolish. As I focused on the ships, I heard their crews—hard men—singing songs about wealth and women and wonderful changes in fortune once they reached shore with their cargo’s.

As I looked closer, I saw death in the ships’ holds and heard weeping and wailing and the agony of despair. Men and women and children were the cargo. Their blood from floggings spilled out over the decks, pouring into the sea and leaving a thick red wake. They were like livestock being shipped to market. And I heard the blood of the innocent cry out for vengeance.

The courses traveled by the hurricanes and the ships are a historic gateway known as the middle passage, paved in innocent blood, along which a curse is unleashed against the lands and families of all who had prospered and walked in agreement with those who sold innocent lives for gold and silver.

I heard the curse echoing from Africa and the wailing and despair when the hurricanes struck land. I saw the fruit of injustice being harvested for many generations, terrible storms churning and lashing worn trade routes.

Apart from repentance, the enemy has a legal right to inflict punishment. Repentance is the key to breaking this deadly cycle to call upon the Lord and bring these sins and iniquities under the power of his blood.

I can’t tell you what, if anything, you need to do personally. God doesn’t do formulas. He’s relational. Those who know him need to take this before the Holy Spirit and follow his lead.

As I post this, three more hurricanes–Katia, Irma, and Jose–are churning in the Atlantic basin.

(C) 2017 Soundthetrumpet.org

 

 

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God’s Model for the Apostles & Prophets

What is being Built? Is it in line with the blueprint in the word?

But what if the church, Christ’s family and visible presence on earth, is built upon a different foundation?

Much of the post-apostolic church, extending even until today, has rejected the validity of New Testament apostles and prophets, arguing that they are no longer needed and building instead upon a foundation of pastors and teachers. But the Chief Architect never designed pastors and teachers to serve as “load-bearing walls.” He intended the burden to be more widely distributed.

Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

Without the apostles and the prophets, how can the body of Christ be built up? How can we reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God? How will the church mature? How can Christians hope to attain to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ? And how can an immature, un-Christlike church serve as salt and light to the nations?

Thankfully, while the church may deviate from the plan, God never does. And the Holy Spirit is restoring the apostles and prophets to the church. He is recreating us all to be a reflection of Jesus, until we—the earthly embodiment of Christ—are able to say to the world, as Jesus said to Philip, “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.”

Taken from “The Prophetic Path” Written by Ron Campbell & Ron Brackin
www.thepropheticpath.com

 

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REDISCOVERING JESUS

It is his fruit, not his miracles, that reveal Jesus. If we would know him, we must look beyond the supernatural.

The Jews of Jesus’ time, like much of the church today, could not see beyond his gifts. The gifts dazzle and confound and amaze, and we are content with their glory and eager to wrap ourselves in it. But an infinitely greater glory blazes within God’s Son. Christ’s fruit is the treasure of God.

Scripture takes on a wonderfully different nature when we search for love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

As we look past the miracles, we see God as he is, rather than as a divine magician or genie.

And as we perceive, so we become.

In God’s Kingdom, as in the world, you are what you eat!

Keep your yard trash-free

Raccoons will eat almost anything. They’re particularly fond of garbage, as anyone knows who has left the house for work in the morning only to find the contents of their trash cans all over the yard. Did you know that raccoon feces often contains a roundworm that is communicable to humans and can migrate into our brain tissue? “Garbage in, garbage out,” as the geeks used to say.

The converse is also true. Garbage out, garbage in.

It’s a principle of the Kingdom. If we judge, we are judged by the same standard (Matthew 7:1-3). If we refuse to forgive, God refuses to forgive us (Matthew 6:15).

“The tongue has the power of life and death,” Solomon said in Proverbs 18:21, “and those who love it will eat its fruit.”

If we speak life, we eat life. If we speak death, we gobble up decomp.

How do we speak about other, those who are not Christians as well as those who are?

If we habitually badmouth people in our congregation, our leaders, and others, we are literally dining at the table of demons.

“You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons” (1 Corinthians 10:21).

What about politicians? The things I hear Christians saying about politicians are enough to delight a whole cafeteria full of demons. And it reveals our innards.

“The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart” (Luke 6:45).

God is not returning for a polluted church. He is returning for his Bride without spot or wrinkle. And the time has come  for the God’s Bride to make herself ready.

Speaking of the immature man, James says, “But no one can tame the tongue; it is a restless evil and full of deadly poison.  With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God; from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way” (James 3:8-10).

The church must not continue with business as usual. We must reignite our passion for God and truth and burn away the apathy that has nearly smothered us to death.

A good way to begin is by fiercely seizing the words of our mouths and hammering them into the words of God, like a smithy at a forge. When something unkind, uncharitable, or ungodly begins to make its way to your mouth, choke it off and let a blessing out, even if it’s nothing more than a quick, “God bless you.”

“You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:22-24).

Begin to habitually say what the Father is saying about people, that he loves them. Every single one of them. Start today, and keep it up.

Each time you do, you will become a little more like Jesus, which is what our lives are really all about.

2017…and beyond…will demand a new way of thinking!

Sometime after the second century, the church began to devolve from an organism to an organization. Instead of being established biblically by the Holy Spirit upon the foundation of apostles and prophets with Jesus Christ as the chief cornerstone, men built it on a foundation of pastors and teachers. The Bible, which is mostly revelatory and partly instructional, was turned inside out, dispensing manuals, bullet lists, and systematic studies rather than revealing the Christ and his kingdom. The gospel of the kingdom of God, preached by Jesus and the apostles, was stripped away, leaving only the gospel of salvation. And the church, created to be the living presence of God on earth, was reduced to a subculture.

Fortunately, or unfortunately, the problem is all in our heads.

As a man thinks within himself, so he is, Solomon said (Proverbs 23:7 NASB). Correspondingly, as the church thinks, so it is.

Paul speaks in 2 Corinthians 10:4 of “strongholds.”

“For the weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood], but they are mighty before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds (AMPC).

This is the only time the Bible uses this concept to refer to a nonphysical stronghold. A stronghold is a fortified place, a place of security. Paul is not talking about a fortress with turrets that can be torn down with ramps and rams. He is talking about a stronghold of beliefs, protected against invasion, a place in which we feel secure.

But what if the beliefs are wrong? Beliefs are the foundation of opinion, and opinion determines decisions and affects behavior. Beliefs are what we live for and what we are willing to die for, so they’re pretty important.

Each of us has a complex of strongholds. The brick and mortar of one of stronghold is the “facts” and opinions we received from parents, friends and teachers. Another was built, and is constantly being renovated, by our ever-shifting culture. Another by politics. Another by religion.

Crisis mail from activist groups we trust or admire shapes our opinions. Newscasters, scriptwriters, authors and actors shape our opinions. Every day, from the time we open our eyes until we click off the light, construction continues on our strongholds. We can even form false opinions out of true facts. Charles Darwin was an excellent naturalist, but he drew incorrect conclusions from his observations.

Most of what we refer to as the church today is a manmade organization. Yet, God is never without a remnant. Alongside the make-believers are believers, like wheat among tares and sheep among goats. And the separation has already begun.

As we enter 2017, we need to begin to systematically examine our strongholds, stone by stone. Strongholds of lies, myths, superstitions, rumors, misinformation, disinformation, and false teaching need to be torn down, stone by stone. Belief by belief. They need to be displaced by the truth, just as a ship displaces the sea when it is launched. Truth needs to replace fiction.

As Paul goes on to say, we need to “demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and…take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”

This must be intentional; it won’t just happen. Nobody will do it for you. The days of spoon feeding need to end. The people of God need to grow up and into the likeness of Christ.

King David did this habitually, constantly speaking to his soul (thoughts, will, and emotions) and telling it what to think, what to believe, and how to choose, forcing his beliefs and opinions to comply with and submit to the word of God, the only source of truth.

“Surely I have composed and quieted my soul; Like a weaned child rests against his mother, My soul is like a weaned child within me” (Psalm 131:2). Picture the disciple John resting against the breast of Jesus, listening to and being comforted by the beat of his heart.

The church today cannot, in its own strength and devices, reverse centuries of decline and deterioration. Our task, like John the Baptist, is to prepare the way for the Lord, to “fill in the valleys, and level the mountains and hills. Straighten the curves, and smooth out the rough places” (Isaiah 40:4 NLT) in our own lives. This speaks clearly and eloquently of tearing down strongholds of wrong beliefs.

Tear down the political stronghold that causes you to look to government for solutions and redemption. Tear down the cultural strongholds that tell you that what God calls sin is really okay. Tear down the economic strongholds in your life; get rid of the poverty mentality that drives you deeper into striving, performance, worry, and insecurity. Lay your theology before the Holy Spirit and ask for revelation instead of confirmation.

How much do you need to unlearn? Depends on how much you have to rationalize to make what your culture, religion, nation, the media, and your opinions agree with God. Could be a little; could be lots.

But if you don’t tear down the worldly belief and opinion strongholds in your life, you may be unable to grasp or participate in the unprecedented global move of the Spirit that is coming. If you don’t believe in the supernatural, you won’t understand it when you begin to see supernatural things occurring. If you don’t believe in the gifts of the Holy Spirit, you will be powerless. If you don’t believe in the fruit of the Spirit, you will lack the character to wield the gifts, even if you had them. If you don’t believe in demons and angels, you’ll probably end up as a P.O.W. in a war you don’t believe in. If you don’t believe in apostles, you’ll reject the restructuring of the church. If you don’t believe in prophets, you’ll be constantly blindsided and lack direction and strategy. If you believe that acts God says are sinful are okay, you will continue to drift from him and deeper into a self-destructive world.

The Bible is a picture of Jesus, not a user’s manual. Prayer is our love language, not chants and incantations. Worship is not a song and dance; it’s an attitude and a lifestyle that extends far beyond the praise team into prisons, hospitals, and the projects, into barrooms and boardrooms.

It is time for the church to stop trying to lure people into its buildings and start shoving its people out into the world. And the Holy Spirit will not throw open those doors until he has lit us up like a California brushfire and burned away all the wood, hay, and stubble.

The religious organization that poses as the church will disappear as the living organism emerges. God will (re)build his church (Matthew 16:18) on the foundation of the apostles and prophets. Christ will be the cornerstone that determines the position of every other stone. And the church, instead of being a mockery in the earth, will be able to say in truth and humility to the world, as Jesus said to Philip, “If you have seen me, you have seen the Father” (John 14:9).

How do you begin?

Begin with the Holy Spirit, the way you should approach every change or challenge. Ask him to bring to your mind one wrong belief, conclusion, or opinion. Listen for his answer. It may be immediate, you might wake up with it out of a dream, he might highlight it in a conversation. The Holy Spirit speaks to us in countless ways. But God promises that he will be found if we actively seek him. When you recognize the wrong belief, conclusion, or opinion, ask him to lead you to the truth. And when you find the truth, replace the untruth, thereby demolishing an ungodly stronghold and building a godly one. Then do it again.

As you think, so you will become. As you think more and more the way God does, you become more and more like his Son, and the church looks more like his Son.

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you” (Philippians 4:8-9).

P.S.      Many people confuse Scripture with popular culture, myths, and even sermon illustrations and never realize it. No matter how many people repeat it, for example, the Bible does not say that Eve ate an “apple” (we’re told only, in Genesis 3:6, that it was “fruit”), nor that Jonah was swallowed by a whale (the Bible says in Jonah 1:17 that it was a “big fish” or “sea creature”) or that one day the lion will lie down with the lamb (the lamb’s friend is actually a wolf. The lion, Isaiah 11:6 says, will lie down with the calf and the fatling). And by the way, good luck finding “God helps those who help themselves” in the Bible. It comes from one of Aesop’s Fables.

[This subject is explored fully in my newly-released book, The Prophetic Path: a practical guide for New Testament prophets, now available in paperback and kindle on Amazon – Please purchase a copy and enjoy!!  www.thepropheticpath.com]

(c) www.soundthetrumpet.org

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A Hearty Laugh!

The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers take counsel together against the Lord and against His Anointed, saying, “Let us tear their fetters apart and cast away their cords from us!”

He who sits in the heavens laughs… Psalm 2:2-4

America’s future will be determined, not by the new occupants of the Oval Office, legislatures, or the bench, but by the church. And it is time that the church comes to grips with this, casts off the spirit of religion that has been smothering it, and submits itself individually, collectively, and wholly to its God.

At present, most of the church is cringing in fear, crushed by depression, or seething with rage, none of which reflects God. We misrepresent him to the world just as much as Moses misrepresented him by striking the rock in the wilderness of Zin.

When David fled for his life before his son Absalom, he declared that God was the “One who lifts my head” (Psalm 3:3). Imagine yourself slouched down with your chin on your chest, depressed as a Louisiana sinkhole. Now see Jesus walk over to you, place his fingers under your chin, and gently raise it until you are face to face. Look into his eyes. See the crinkles at the edges? He’s smiling at you. And nothing bad can resist that grin.

So, stop it, church! Get to your feet, dust yourself off, and smell the coffee! Open your eyes and turn off the news.

But the church is not here to save the country or the world. Jesus already did that. The world cannot be fixed any more than you could. The cross wasn’t designed to fix you; it was designed to kill you.

It is time for the church to die to this carnal rubbish.

I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. Galatians 2:20

Paul did not intend this to be a metaphor. The church needs to stop whining about its troubles and pains. Pain is what crucifixion is all about. Even on the cross, Jesus’ eyes were on God.

Most of the shelves in Christian bookstores are filled with books about us. Heal me. Deliver me. Bless me. Fix my marriage. Fix my finances.

Enough!

The next day John was there again with two of his disciples. When he saw Jesus passing by, he said, “Look, the Lamb of God!” When the two disciples heard him say this, they followed Jesus. John 1:35-37

Prophetic Being Restored.

The prophetic is being restored to the body of Christ, and the true prophets are pointing to Jesus and shouting, “Look, the Lamb of God! Fix your eyes on Jesus and off yourselves, the church, the government, the media, and one another’s faults.”

As Jesus is the only hope for the church, the church—the image and embodiment of Christ on earth—is the only hope for America and the world. Not to change our nation and the world but to light the way for those God has called and chosen. Everyone else, from God’s perspective outside time, has already made his or her choice.

But first the church must repent. It must change the way it thinks about God, the body of Christ, sin, and the world. The church—meaning every individual Christian—must fiercely and resolutely tear down and burn its idols and put its house in order. God has already told you what you need to do. Start with humility.

Are you hurt or offended? Forgive! Stop letting unforgiveness and bitterness victimize you day after day, year after year. You might find that forgiveness will take care of some of those aches and pains as well.

Don’t have enough? Give. Don’t have money to give? Give time. Don’t have time? You’re too busy. Trim the fat.

The elections are over. What is done is done. It is time for the church to cry out to God, as David did:

Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. Psalm 139:23-24

The job of the Holy Spirit, in addition to comforting and counseling us, is to convict us of sin. If we pursue him with this prayer, he will not only reveal our sins to us but also show us the way out of our darkness into the light. Once we have light, we become the light on the hill God created us to be.

America needs to see Jesus. When we walk through a crowd, his fragrance needs to follow us and linger.

Because of Christ, we give off a sweet scent rising to God, which is recognized by those on the way of salvation—an aroma redolent with life. But those on the way to destruction treat us more like the stench from a rotting corpse. 2 Corinthians 2:14-16 MSG

The question today is whether the church will repent or continue as it is for four more years.

Will we become the light of the world or drift with the world deeper into the darkness?

Will we keep our grip on depression and rage, or will we let God lift our chins, meet his eyes, and join in the laughter?

COME ON MAN!!!!

[This subject is explored fully in my newly-released book, The Prophetic Path: a practical guide for New Testament prophets, now available in paperback and kindle on Amazon – www.thepropheticpath.com]

(c) www.soundthetrumpet.org

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Politics and Prophets

Many Christians want prophets to tell them who they should vote for, who is going to win the elections, and what will happen afterward. If things are going to get bad, they want to know how bad and what they can do to avoid pain or loss.

Some prophetic voices have yielded to the demand. But predicting the outcome of political campaigns is not in the prophet’s job description. Little wonder when these predictions contradict one another and leave the church vulnerable to spirits of confusion and even slander.

“The tongue runs wild, a wanton killer. With our tongues we bless God our Father; with the same tongues we curse the very men and women he made in his image. Curses and blessings out of the same mouth! My friends, this can’t go on.”[1]

Which of us knows whether God might turn another Saul into a Paul or bring forth a Cyrus to restore a nation?

The Holy Spirit is not the church’s oracle. And God did not give prophets to the church to serve as fortune tellers.

The purpose of the prophet is to express the love of Christ, to advance the kingdom of God, and to cry out to heaven against injustice and the oppression of the poor. The testimony of Jesus—not the future of America or the supremacy of a political party—is the spirit of prophecy.

In these violent, uncertain days, we do well to get our heads out of the headlines and into his presence.

[1] James 3:9-10 MSG.

(c) www.soundthetrumpet.org

The Office of Prophet!

Scripture tells us that, when Jesus ascended on high, “he gave gifts to men…And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ” (Ephesians 4:8-13 NASB).

Prophets and apostles, Paul explains, are foundation ministries.

“So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints, and are of God’s household, having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus Himself being the corner stone, in whom the whole building, being fitted together, is growing into a holy temple in the Lord, in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling of God in the Spirit” (Ephesians 2:19-22 NASB)

If, however, the church is built upon a foundation of pastors and teachers, instead of apostles and prophets, what are we building?

“(Formerly in Israel, when a man went to inquire of God, he used to say, ‘Come, and let us go to the seer’; for he who is called a prophet now was formerly called a seer.)” (1 Samuel 9:9 NASB).

This would suggest that the prophet was an individual who communed with the Lord, who enabled him to reveal present truth and to foretell things to come.

Throughout the centuries, however, the traditions of men and religious spirits have declared that the Spirit-given gifts of prophet and apostle have passed away, atrophied, are no longer needed, are irrelevant in the modern church.

But without its seers the church is blind and directionless. It can see the kingdoms of this world but not the kingdom of God and his Christ.

If only three of the Holy Spirit’s ministry gifts are functioning, then only three-fifths of God’s plan is being fulfilled, and the saints will be only three-fifths perfected, leaving the church unable to mature, come into the full knowledge of the Son of God, or grow into the perfect man.

[This subject is explored fully in my newly-released book, Path to the Prophetic: a practical guide for New Testament prophets, available now at www.amazon.com in paperback and Kindle editions.]

Ron Campbell (C) 2015 www.soundthetrumpet.org

 

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The Ministry of the Prophet

Prophets and priests are the warp and woof of the Old Testament. While priests represented the people to God, prophets represented God to the people.

In the Old Testament, God used his prophets to exhort his people and their kings and to give them direction, as well as to rebuke and restore them. They pronounced judgments on nations and chastised people when they fell into idolatry. Prophets foretold and declared God’s kingdom patterns, as well as his phenomenal plan for the redemption of mankind through his Messiah, Jesus Christ.

“Surely the Lord God does nothing unless He reveals His secret counsel to His servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7 NASB).

There is no indication in Scripture that God ever revoked the ministry of the prophetic, but he diversified it at Pentecost. The prophetic is now divided into two parts. In addition to the office of the prophet, which is all there was in the Old Testament, the gift of prophecy is now available to anyone through the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

It is God’s will that everyone should prophesy, but not all who prophesy are prophets.

Ron Campbell (C) 2015 www.soundthetrumpet.org

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South Africa Trip in Review

Bishop Joseph Garlington and Ron Campbell in South Africa.

Bishop Joseph Garlington and Ron Campbell in South Africa.

reconciliation

The Apostolic and Prophetic Conference, with Joseph Garlington and the reconciliation team, was phenomenal!

When Melanie and I left South Africa in 1993, we thought we had left for good. But God had another plan. And it came to a climax twenty-five years later.

My life in South Africa had been hard and violent. I had a lot of anger and bitterness. But at this conference, the Holy Spirit enabled me to receive and accept my brothers, as well as my country of birth.

“These are your people,” he told me.

He explained that, just as he had removed Moses from Egypt, to heal him and to prepare him for a season that was to come, he had moved me from South Africa to heal me and prepare me for the present season.

I shared this with the people and asked them to forgive me for the Apartheid mentality I was raised with.

the heavens opened

Suddenly, everything changed. I saw everyone and everything differently. I declared words I could never have spoken as a white man in South Africa. To the Apartheid government, such words would have been considered treason, and I could have been arrested and imprisoned.

I punched my fist into the air and shouted, “Amandla Awetu!” (Power to the People!). And the entire conference erupted, every person on his feet, declaring “Amandla Awetu! Amandla Awetu!” Back in 1993, these words would have brought hundreds of police officers crashing in and arresting everyone. The phrase was identified with the socialist African National Congress that was trying to overthrow the Afrikaner government and end Apartheid.

As we shouted, something broke open in the heavens. It was as if a light pierced through the sky! It was unbelievable! The presence of the Holy Spirit was powerful and palpable. We held a dozen meetings over the next three days, prophesying not only over individual conferees but over the entire nation!

closing

On the final night, we had a tribal worship service, with Zulu worship and dancing. At one point, I was called forward and honored for my return to my people. Pastor Eddie Phetla and his wife, Stella, draped the new South African flag over my shoulders, blessed me, and received me as a brother.

I am so blessed to belong to my South African family—something only the God of the nations, the King of all kings and rulers could have accomplished!

Thank you!

I am deeply grateful and greatly humbled by the kindness and generosity of all of you who prayed and participated to make this impossible experience possible.

(c)2015 www.soundthetrumpet.org

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