February 22, 2017: Verse of the day

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Just as we can only love God because He first loved us, we can only hold on to God because He holds on to us. We can survive any threatening circumstance and overcome any spiritual obstacle that the world or Satan puts in our way because in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us.

Overwhelmingly conquer is from hupernikaō, a compound verb that literally means to hyper-conquer, to over-conquer, to conquer, as it were, with success to spare. Those who overwhelmingly conquer are supremely victorious in overcoming everyone and everything that threatens their relationship to Jesus Christ. But they do so entirely through His power, the power of Him who loved us so much that He gave His life for us that we might have life in Him.

Because our Lord both saves and keeps us, we do much more than simply endure and survive the ominous circumstances Paul mentions in verse 35. First of all, we overwhelmingly conquer by coming out of troubles stronger than when they first threatened us. Paul has just declared that, by His divine grace and power, God causes everything, including the very worst things, to work for the good of His children (8:28). Even when we suffer because of our own sinfulness or unfaithfulness, our gracious Lord will bring us through with a deeper understanding of our own unrighteousness and of His perfect righteousness, of our own faithlessness and of His steadfast faithfulness, of our own weakness and of His great power.

Second, we overwhelmingly conquer because our ultimate reward will far surpass whatever earthly and temporal loss we may suffer. With Paul, we should view even the most terrible circumstance as but “momentary, light affliction” that produces “for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison” (2 Cor. 4:17).

From the human perspective, of course, the over-conquest God promises often seems a long time in coming. But when, as true believers, we go through times of testing, whatever their nature or cause, we come out spiritually refined by our Lord. Instead of those things separating us from Christ, they will bring us closer to Him. His grace and glory will rest on us and we will grow in our understanding of His will and of the sufficiency of His grace. While we wait for Him to bring us through the trials, we know that He says to us what He said to Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” And we should respond with Paul, “Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may dwell in me” (2 Cor. 12:9).

Paul probably wrote his letter to Rome during a winter in Corinth, and it is not likely that either Paul or the Roman believers realized how short the time would be before they would stand in need of the apostle’s comforting words in this passage. It would not be many years before they would face fierce persecution from a pagan government and people that now tolerated them with indifference. It would not be long before the blood of those to whom this epistle is addressed would soak the sands of Roman amphitheaters. Some would be mauled by wild beasts, some would be slain by ruthless gladiators, and others would be used as human torches to light Nero’s garden parties.

Consequently, the true and false believers soon would be easily distinguished. Many congregations would be saying of former members, “They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, in order that it might be shown that they all are not of us” (1 John 2:19). But those whom the world looks upon as the overwhelmed and conquered are in reality overwhelming conquerors. In God’s scheme of things, the victors are the vanquished and the vanquished are the victors.

MacArthur New Testament Commentary

February 22, 2017: Daily Devotional Guide Collection

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February 22

Loving Obedience

He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me.

John 14:21

 

If I could simplify the Christian life to one thing, it would be obedience. I don’t mean just external obedience but a spirit of obedience. It’s not like the little girl who defiantly continued to stand up after her father had told her many times to sit down. Finally her father said, “Sit down, or I’ll spank you.” She sat down but looked up and said, “I’m sitting down, but I’m standing up in my heart!” That’s obeying outwardly but disobeying in the heart. A Christian should be willing to obey.

One evidence of spiritual maturity is loving God enough to obey Him even when it is difficult. God is glorified when we willingly obey Him no matter what the cost. Each time we obey, we grow spiritually, and each time we disobey, we retard our growth.[1]


February 22 Being Merciful

“Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”

Luke 6:36

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Since we have received mercy from God, we are obligated to show mercy to those with physical or spiritual needs.

Jesus demonstrated His mercy many times as He went about healing people and casting out demons. Two blind men cried out, “ ‘Lord, have mercy on us, Son of David!’ … And moved with compassion, Jesus touched their eyes; and immediately they regained their sight, and followed Him” (Matt. 20:30, 34). He was also deeply moved in spirit and wept when He saw the sorrow that Lazarus’s death caused (John 11:33–36).

His greatest mercy was shown, though, to those with spiritual needs. Not only did He heal a paralytic, but He forgave his sins (Luke 5:18–25). He also prayed for His executioners, saying, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34).

We can show mercy by our physical acts. John says, “But whoever has the world’s goods, and beholds his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him? Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth” (1 John 3:17–18).

We must also show mercy spiritually. Because we have experienced God’s mercy, we should have great concern for those who have not. We show spiritual mercy by proclaiming the saving gospel of Jesus Christ to the unsaved and by praying that God would show His mercy to them.

We also demonstrate spiritual mercy by lovingly confronting sinning Christians: “Brethren, even if a man is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; looking to yourselves, lest you too be tempted” (Gal. 6:1). Sinning Christians bring reproach on Christ and His church and will fall under God’s discipline. In such cases it is wrong to say nothing and let the harm continue.

God has promised us in Matthew 5:7 that we will receive mercy from Him if we are merciful to others. If we have received unlimited mercy from our loving God, if we have been lifted from our poor, sinful, wretched state to become citizens of heaven, how can we withhold mercy from others?

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Suggestions for Prayer: Pray that you would be sensitive to opportunities to show mercy today.

For Further Study: Read Matthew 23:37–39. What was Jerusalem’s condition in verse 37? ✧ How does that intensify the nature of Christ’s compassion and mercy toward His people?[2]


FEBRUARY 22

I KNOW THE ONE WHO MADE THIS!

But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.

—Jeremiah 9:24

I just listened today while we had our dinner to a sonata by Beethoven and it was beautiful. But I suppose it would have been more wonderful if I could have shaken hands with the great Beethoven and said, “It’s an honor to shake your hand, sir. I consider you one of the greatest composers that ever lived—a genius!”… It would have been wonderful.

And so with Michaelangelo, the greatest artist of his day…. Perhaps he would have called me by my first name and I could have called him by his first name. I would introduce him to my friends and say, “I’d like to have you meet the great Michaelangelo.” That would have been better than knowing his works. I have seen his tremendous sculpture of Moses, but it would have been better if I could have seen the man himself.

So let men turn their telescopes on the heavens and their microscopes on the molecules. Let them probe and search and tabulate and name and find and discover. I can dare to say to them, “I know the One who made all this. I’m personally acquainted with the One who made it.” AOG081-082

I bow before You, great God, realizing the awesome privilege that is mine: the privilege of knowing You personally. Amen. [3]


February 22

Gentleness as Defined by Jesus

Blessed are the gentle, for they shall inherit the earth.—Matt. 5:5

In this verse, “gentle” (a word often rendered “meek” in other translations) means mild or soft. Looking ahead to His triumphal entry, the prophet hailed Christ this way: “Behold your King is coming to you, gentle, and mounted on a donkey” (Matt. 21:5; cf. Zech. 9:9).

From Old Testament times, gentleness has been God’s way for mankind. The book of Job says God “sets on high those who are lowly, and those who mourn are lifted to safety” (5:11; cf. Ps. 25:9). “Moses was very humble, more than any man who was on the face of the earth” (Num. 12:3).

Gentleness does not connote weakness, but rather a way of utilizing all its resources and emotions appropriately (cf. Prov. 16:32; 25:28). The gentle person has died to self and therefore does not resort to violence to defend himself, knowing his person has nothing to commend before God. Gentleness is not cowardice, lack of conviction, or niceness. It is the spirit of Christ, who defended the Father’s glory, not His own, and left us an example: He “committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His mouth; and while being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously” (1 Peter 2:22–23).

Christ’s gentleness, however, did not mean He was passive in defending righteousness. He guarded the temple against the moneychangers (John 2:14–15), denounced the hypocritical religious leaders (Matt. 23:1–33), and warned the disobedient of judgment (Matt. 25:45–46). His gentleness was power completely surrendered to God’s control.

ASK YOURSELF
What’s been your interpretation of “meekness” or “gentleness”? Is this a quality you value and aspire to? If gentleness was more a part of your demeanor, what benefits would you begin to see in your daily life?[4]

FEBRUARY 22

OUR INDIVIDUAL WORTH

For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

Romans 10:4

 

Our lost race has always been prone to discount and reject the wonderful fact of the individual factor in the love of God. Far, far too many men and women in this world are convinced that God’s love for the world is just one big lump—and the individual is not involved.

We have only to look around us with serious observation to confirm the fact that the devil has been successful in planting his lie that no one cares for the individual person.

Even in nature around us, there appears to be very little individual concern. The burden of concern is always for the species.

But Jesus did not preach to the multitudes as though they were a faceless crowd. He preached to them as individuals, and with a knowledge of the burdens and the needs of each one. Our Savior did not come into the world to deal with statistics!

Each of us must come with full confidence that it is a personal word God has spoken to us in Christ, that “whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish.”

 

Lord, Your Word says that each of us is “fearfully and wonderfully made” and that You are concerned about the one lost sheep in a flock of a hundred. Thank You for purchasing my redemption by Your death and resurrection. I love You, Lord.[5]


February 22 Cultivating the Fruit of Righteousness

“… having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ” (Phil. 1:11).

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Bearing spiritual fruit is the acid test of a true believer.

After facing life-threatening situations, people often say, “I saw my entire life flash before my eyes.” That’s the picture we get in Philippians 1:11.

“The fruit of righteousness” refers to what is produced in you as you operate in love, pursue excellence, and maintain your integrity. It includes every attitude and action consistent with God’s standard of what is right.

“Having been filled” speaks of something that happened in the past with continuing results. At your salvation the seed of righteousness was planted within you. It bears righteous fruit throughout your lifetime. On the day of Christ that fruit will confirm your salvation.

Fruitfulness has always been the acid test of true salvation. Jesus said, “If you abide in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine” (John 8:31). When John the Baptist admonished his followers to “bring forth fruits in keeping with your repentance” (Luke 3:8), he was speaking of good deeds (vv. 10–14). Paul said we are God’s “workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them” (Eph. 2:10). John said that all who profess Christ should live as He lived (cf. 1 John 2:6).

Bearing spiritual fruit is not something you can achieve on your own. It “comes through Jesus Christ” (Phil. 1:11). Jesus Himself said, “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you, unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me, and I in him, he bears much fruit; for apart from Me you can do nothing” (John 15:4–5).

You were redeemed to glorify God through righteous deeds. Make that your priority today.

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Suggestions for Prayer:  Psalm 71 is a psalm of praise to God for His righteousness and faithful provisions. Read it and meditate on its truths. Then praise God for His righteousness toward you. ✧ Ask for opportunities to demonstrate righteousness to others today.

For Further Study: Read Proverbs 11:1–9, 15:8–9, and 21:2–3, noting the characteristics and benefits of righteousness.[6]


FEBRUARY 22

ONLY SERVANTS OF TRUTH CAN KNOW THE TRUTH

…So is every one that is born of the Spirit.

JOHN 3:8

Only the servants of truth can ever know truth. You can fill your head full of knowledge but the day that you decide that you are going to obey God, it will get down into your heart. You shall know!

I once read a book about the inner life of a man who was a sharp intellectual. By his own admission, he stood outside and examined spiritual people from the outside but nothing ever reached him. And that’s possible!

You cannot argue around this. Read your Bible—any version you want—and if you are honest you will admit that it is either obedience or inward blindness. You can repeat the book of Romans word for word and still be blind inwardly. You can know the doctrine of justification by faith and take your stand with Luther and the Reformation and still be blind inwardly. For it is not the body of truth that enlightens: it is by the Spirit of truth. If you are willing to obey the Lord Jesus, He will illuminate your spirit, inwardly enlighten you; and the truth you have known will then be known spiritually, and power will begin to flow up and out and you will find yourself changed marvelously changed.

It is rewarding to believe in a Christianity that really changes men and women. In that great day of Christ’s coming, all that will matter is whether we have been inwardly illuminated, inwardly regenerated, inwardly purified!

The question is: do we really know Jesus in this way?[7]


[1] MacArthur, J. (2001). Truth for today : a daily touch of God’s grace (p. 65). Nashville, Tenn.: J. Countryman.

[2] MacArthur, J. (1997). Strength for today. Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

[3] Tozer, A. W., & Eggert, R. (2015). Tozer on the almighty god: a 365-day devotional. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

[4] MacArthur, J. (2008). Daily readings from the life of Christ (p. 61). Chicago: Moody Publishers.

[5] Tozer, A. W. (2015). Mornings with tozer: daily devotional readings. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

[6] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1993). Drawing Near—Daily Readings for a Deeper Faith (p. 65). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

[7] Tozer, A. W., & Smith, G. B. (2015). Evenings with tozer: daily devotional readings. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

February 21, 2017 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report

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Top News – 2/21/2017

France’s Le Pen cancels meet with Lebanon grand mufti over headscarf
The cleric’s press office said Le Pen’s aides had been informed beforehand that a headscarf was required for the meeting and had been “surprised by her refusal”. French law bans headscarves in the public service and for high school pupils, in the name of church-state separation and equal rights for women. Le Pen wants to extend this ban to all public places, a measure that would affect Muslims most of all.

SWEDEN RIOT: Police forced to shoot at protestors as violence erupts – yet PM is in denial
SWEDEN’S capital was plunged into chaos on Monday as police were forced to fire at rioters after a violence erupted in an area described as high risk. The terrifying scenes took place just hours after the country’s Prime Minister, Stefan Löfven, slammed Donald Trump for claiming Sweden was in crisis as a result of its liberal refugee policy.

Idea of EU Army Signifies Dawn of Europe’s New Foreign Policy Concept
“This year, which will see the reformatting of the US’ attitude towards NATO and its military presence [in Europe], will signify the further prospects for the formation of the European defense union and Europe’s relationship with the European non-NATO member states, such as Sweden, Norway and Finland,” he told the video conference.

PA leader calls on EU to recognize ‘Palestine’
“There is a greater need than in the past for all EU countries to recognize an independent Palestinian state within the 1967 borders with its capital in East Jerusalem,” he said, adding such a move would be an “act of support for the efforts of the Palestinian leadership to end the occupation and to save the two-state solution.”

Ayatollah: We will liberate ‘Palestine’, remove cancer of Israel
The comments were made at the Sixth International Conference in Support of the Palestinian Intifada, a government-sanctioned event held in Tehran. According to the Mehr news agency, representatives of 80 countries joined the event, which glorifies terrorism and acts of wanton violence against Jews and advocates in favor of the destruction of the Jewish state.

SOLAR TORNADO OVER-ROTATES, EXPLODES
Yesterday, an explosion on the sun’s eastern limb hurled a twisted plume of debris more than 250,000 km above the solar surface. NASA’s orbiting Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded the blast:

Haley Scorches ‘Shameful’ UN Anti-Israel Bias After First Security Council Meeting, Vows Things Will Change
The Trump appointee then declared, in no uncertain terms, that the US would no longer allow anti-Israel bias to go unchallenged. “I am here to underscore the ironclad support of the United States for Israel. I’m here to emphasize the United States is determined to stand up to the UN’s anti-Israel bias,” she announced.

1,800-year-old Hebrew stone inscriptions found in ancient Galilee synagogue
An 1,800-year-old limestone column capital engraved with two Hebrew inscriptions dating to the Roman period was discovered during a recent restoration and conservation project carried out in an ancient synagogue in Peqi’in, located near the Western Galilee. The Israel Antiquities Authority said the work is being conducted by the Council for Conservation of Heritage Sites in Israel, as part of a project by the Jerusalem Affairs and Heritage Ministry.

Netanyahu heads to Australia amid calls by former leaders to recognize ‘Palestine’
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu wrapped up a 36-hour visit to Singapore on Tuesday that focused on economic and security issues, and headed to Sydney where he is expected to hear much more – at least from opposition politicians and the media – about the Palestinian issue.

Over 100 gravestones desecrated at St. Louis-area Jewish cemetery
Vandals damaged and knocked-over more than 100 headstones at a St. Louis-area Jewish cemetery. FOX2NOW…reported that police in University City, Missouri, were…reviewing footage from surveillance cameras in the area…The station quoted police as saying that it was likely there was more than one perpetrator. The police have not yet confirmed whether the incident is being considered a hate crime.

Trump names Lt Gen HR McMaster as national security adviser
US President Donald Trump has named Lt Gen HR McMaster as his national security adviser. He will replace Lt Gen Michael Flynn who was fired after just three weeks and three days in the job. A lieutenant general with the US Army, HR McMaster served in Iraq and Afghanistan, where he worked on a government anti-corruption drive.

Dangerous radioactive particles have been detected across Europe and no-one knows where they came from
DANGEROUS radioactive particles have been detected in seven different European countries and scientists can’t explain where they have come from. Traces of Iodine-131 were found in Norway, Finland, Poland, Czech Republic, Germany, France and Spain in January, but the public were not immediately alerted. These radioactive particles are produced by atomic bomb explosions or nuclear disasters such as Chernobyl or Fukushima.

Reddit Censors Pro-Trump Content in New Crackdown
Reddit is banning the vast majority of pro-Donald Trump posts from appearing on its “most popular” page frequented by new users. The online discussion site announced it was clamping down on what would appear as “popular” by showing visitors only popular posts from handpicked categories, which would apparently exclude anything from pro-Trump subreddits.

China opposes U.S. naval patrols in South China Sea
China said on Tuesday it opposed action by other countries under the pretext of freedom of navigation that undermined its sovereignty, after a U.S. aircraft carrier strike group began patrols in the contested South China Sea. The U.S. navy said the strike group, including the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier the USS Carl Vinson, began “routine operations” in the South China Sea on Saturday amid growing tension with China over control of the disputed waterway.

Nikki Haley slams United Nations for anti-Israeli double standards
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley gave a very strong statement condemning the United Nations for their anti-Israel bias and double standards against America’s Middle East ally. “The first thing I want to do is talk about what we just saw in there,” Haley began. “The Security Council just finished its regular monthly meeting on Middle East issues. It’s the first meeting like that that I’ve attended, and I have to say it was a bit strange.”

It Has Begun, Tillerson Fires Most of the 7th Floor
The infamous 7th floor Americans were stunned to learn of the State Department rogue Shadow Government which operated in secret from the 7th floor. They were behind the corrupt handling of the Clinton documents.

Now Democrats call Obama’s shadow government ‘The Devil’

Two Democratic operatives recently called OFA “The Devil.” When former President Obama issued a call to arms to his OFA troops in order to protect his legacy, particularly Obamacare, Stephen Handwerk, executive director of the Louisiana Democratic Party, wrote in a private email to fellow party leaders, “This is some GRADE A Bulls–t right here.”

David Horowitz: Dems Double Down on Everything Voters Rejected
Democrats are failing by sticking with policies that voters have soundly rejected — including in the election of Donald Trump as president, best-selling author David Horowitz told Larry King’s “PoliticKing” show.

Meanwhile, Rioting Breaks Out In Sweden
Just a day after ‘fake news’ criticizes Trump’s comments on Sweden, a riot in so-called “Little Moghadishu” – the Swedish borough of Rinkeby – occurs. 100s of young people throw stones at police, set fire to eight cars forcing police to fire warning shots…

Government Knows Best – Junk Food Ban Goes Global
One small problem has emerged as a Nanny State in the Pacific islands considers banning imported sugary foods to combat their obesity epidemic…”No country in the world has been able to demonstrate reductions in its obesity prevalence, so we’re not that different…It’s just that our levels are higher to start with.”

Publisher cancels Milo Yiannopoulos book ‘Dangerous’
Right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos’ publisher has cancelled his planned book, “Dangerous.” Simon & Schuster and its Threshold Editions imprint announced Monday that “after careful consideration” they had pulled the book, which had been high on Amazon.com’s best-seller lists and was the subject of intense controversy.


The Briefing 02-21-17

Oregon considering bill that blurs line between physician-assisted suicide and state-sanctioned murder

A crime for not much longer? British police are looking the other way on assisted suicide

Acceptance is outstripping research on health risks as more pregnant women and retirees use marijuana

Learning from children: Are kids bad at paying attention, or are adults not paying enough attention?


February 21, 2017
WES VERNON — If President Trump were to make a mysterious disappearance or die tomorrow (or a combination of both), the enemies of America (within our shores) would not miss a beat. They are, of course, furious that the Donald would dare to seek the 2016 presidential office that had been reserved for Queen Hillary, whom they had anointed to replace the communist-mentored Barack Obama…. (more)

February 21, 2017
ALAN KEYES — Something about the resignation of Michael Flynn makes no sense to me. As the chief of the National Security Council’s staff, the National Security Adviser has, during my lifetime, always been one of the president’s most important and confidential advisers. The job has required frequent contact with the chief executive, as well as a relationship involving the utmost trust, discretion, and confidentiality…. (more)

February 21, 2017
JOAN SWIRSKY — The original story of Saint George and the Dragon dates back to the 7th century, the narrative maintaining that in a fictitious town in Libya, there lived a king who chose to appease the evil dragon in the town’s lake that was poisoning the countryside. With the agreement of his subjects, the appeasement involved feeding the dragon two sheep every day. But when there were no more sheep, the King’s subjects started feeding their children to the dragon, chosen by lottery…. (more)

February 19, 2017

WASHINGTON FREE BEACON — A Democratic Federal Election Commission official who pushed to regulate the internet and has been absent from public meetings for months is resigning, according to an announcement. Ann Ravel, who wanted to regulate political speech on the internet from websites such as the Drudge Report, announced Sunday that she is stepping down from her post…. (more)


February 19, 2017
DAILY CALLER — State officials across the nation are fighting former President Barack Obama’s last-minute decision to impose federal authority over state-run election systems, the Daily Caller News Foundation has learned…. (more)

February 19, 2017
GARTH KANT — First, the Democrats got clobbered in the election by the Republicans. Now they’re squaring off against each other in a civil war. This political Gettysburg pits the Democratic Party base against the Obama machine called Organizing for Action, or OFA, the community-organizing army left over from the former president’s election campaigns…. (more)

February 18, 2017
AOL — First lady Melania Trump kicked off President Donald Trump’s campaign rally in Melbourne, Florida, on Saturday by reciting the Lord’s prayer and telling the crowd she will “always stay true to myself, and be truthful to you.” “I didn’t know Melania would be reading the Lord’s prayer,” Trump said following the first lady’s remarks…. (more)

February 18, 2017



February 18, 2017
BREITBART — In an impassioned address Friday, Pope Francis denied the existence of Islamic terrorism, while simultaneously asserting that “the ecological crisis is real.” “Christian terrorism does not exist, Jewish terrorism does not exist, and Muslim terrorism does not exist. They do not exist,” Francis said in his speech to a world meeting of populist movements…. (more)

February 18, 2017

NEWSMAX — Omar Abdel-Rahman, the extremist Muslim cleric known as “the blind sheikh” convicted of conspiracy in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and of planning more attacks as part of a “war of urban terrorism” in the United States, has died in a U.S. prison, his son Ammar told Reuters on Saturday…. (more)


February 18, 2017
NEWSMAX — Vice President Mike Pence vowed Saturday that the United States will “hold Russia accountable” even as President Donald Trump searches for new common ground with Moscow at the start of his presidency…. (more)

February 18, 2017
NEWSMAX — Support was building Saturday for former UN Ambassador John Bolton to fill the White House national security adviser spot left vacant by Michael Flynn’s resignation…. (more)

February 18, 2017

CNN — Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has reassigned a majority of the staff meant to work most closely with the top US diplomat in what career officials at the State Department fear is the start of a major reorganization…. (more)


February 18, 2017

WASHINGTON TIMES — Norma McCorvey, the pseudonymous plaintiff at the center of the U.S. Supreme Court case that legalized abortion, Roe V. Wade, passed away Saturday from a heart ailment, The Washington Post reported. She was 69. McCorvey’s death was confirmed to the newspaper by Joshua Prager, a journalist currently in the midst of writing a book about the landmark court ruling. She died Saturday at an assisted-living facility in Katy, Texas, west of Houston, the Post reported…. (more)


February 18, 2017

WASHINGTON EXAMINER — The Supreme Court on Friday scheduled oral arguments for April in a crucial religious liberty case concerning state funding. Federal appeals court Judge Neil Gorsuch’s Supreme Court confirmation proceedings begin March 20, and he could be seated on the court before arguments begin…. (more)


February 18, 2017
BOB UNRUH — The party of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton is taking it on the chin in a daily tracking poll. The Gallup survey found that only 25 percent of voters self-identify as Democrats as of about the beginning of this year. The percentage who identify as Republican is 28, while it is independents who have made the biggest gains, measuring 44 percent…. (more)

February 17, 2017
WASHINGTON EXAMINER — The Associated Press dropped the ball Friday with a supposed scoop alleging President Trump is considering deploying approximately 100,000 National Guard units to round up illegal immigrants. The Department of Homeland Security is considering no such thing, an agency spokeswoman said following the story’s publication…. (more)

February 17, 2017

NEWSMAX — Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) took to social media to quell what it calls “dangerous and irresponsible” stories that allege the agency is executing “roundups” of illegal immigrants for deportation. Untrue, ICE said in a tweet…. (more)


February 17, 2017
WASHINGTON TIMES — CBS News host John Dickerson says the press ruined its own reputation long before President Trump came along. Appearing on Hugh Hewitt’s radio show Friday, Mr. Dickerson agreed with Mr. Trump’s claim during Thursday’s heated press conference that the American people have lost faith in the media’s credibility…. (more)

February 17, 2017
WASHINGTON EXAMINER — Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, said his fellow Republicans should repeal Obamacare before agreeing on a replacement, and dismissed concerns of a potential backlash when current beneficiaries lose coverage as a fictional “boogeyman” designed to scare lawmakers away from delivering on repeal…. (more)

February 17, 2017

WASHINGTON TIMES — Democratic Party activists who tried unsuccessfully to sink Hillary Clinton’s nomination at last year’s convention are at it again, pestering national party members ahead of next week’s vote on a new chairman. Party leaders are eager to incorporate the energy of progressives who buoyed Sen. Bernard Sanders’ presidential campaign last year – – but less enthusiastic about the activists’ rough edges that continue to irk many Democratic National Committee members…. (more)


February 17, 2017

CHERYL CHUMLEY — Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder, wrote in a 5,800-word manifesto his personal vision of recreating the world in his image – – an image that includes a true “global community that works for all of us,” he said, in an interview with the Associated Press…. (more)


February 17, 2017

BOB UNRUH — The nine judges on the Washington state Supreme Court – – Mary Fairhurst, Charles Johnson, Barb Madsen, Susan Owens, Debra Stephens, Charles Wiggins, Steve Gonzalez, Sheryl McCloud and Mary Yu – – have decided they can order a citizen to violate her Christian faith…. (more)


February 16, 2017
WALL STREET JOURNAL — U.S. intelligence officials have withheld sensitive intelligence from President Donald Trump because they are concerned it could be leaked or compromised, according to current and former officials familiar with the matter…. (more)

February 16, 2017
WASHINGTON TIMES — The Trump White House and the U.S. intelligence community moved closer to open warfare in the wake of National Security Adviser Michael Flynn’s spectacular downfall – – and the fallout is unnerving key American intelligence partners around the world, according to several high-level national security sources…. (more)

Pope Francis Declares ‘Muslim Terrorism Does Not Exist’ As He Continues To Set The Stage For A One World Religion

Pope Francis At The Vatican - Public DomainWhen I first started seeing headlines that claimed that Pope Francis said that “Muslim terrorism does not exist”, I thought that it couldn’t possibly be true. After all, who could possibly deny that Islamic radicals are engaged in terrorism? Within the last 30 days, there have been 127 Islamic terror attacks in a total of 25 different countries. And in 2016 global terror attacks set an all-time record high and were up 25 percent from the year before. Unfortunately, there are many world leaders that are so politically correct and that are so married to the idea that Islam is good that they cannot admit to themselves that radical Islamic terror is being fueled by radical Islamic beliefs. And in the case of Pope Francis, he is exceedingly careful never to say anything negative about Islam because it would greatly hinder his efforts to bring all of the major religions of the planet closer together. (Read More…)


‘Allahu Akbar’ Becomes A Rallying Call As Leftists Join Forces With Radical Muslims To Fight Trump All Across America

Anti-Trump Muslim Protest - Photo by Fibonacci BlueAn “unholy alliance” between anti-Trump leftists and radical Muslims is beginning to emerge all over America. President Trump’s recent executive order that restricted immigration from seven predominantly Muslim countries is bringing a very strange mixture of people out to street protests. On the one hand you have hardcore Muslims that are chanting “Allahu Akbar” and that believe that Islamic law will someday prevail over the U.S. Constitution, and on the other hand you have radical leftists marching right next to them that are protesting for “women’s rights”, “gay rights” and “civil rights”. The ironic thing about all of this is that if the radical Muslims have their way, the leftists will either convert to Islam someday or will be completely destroyed. But for now they need one another, and so a very odd marriage of convenience has taken place. (Read More…)


It Is About Time That We Had A President That Was Willing To Go To War With The Mainstream Media

Donald Trump Waving - Public DomainThursday afternoon’s press conference was perhaps the most memorable moment of Donald Trump’s presidency so far.  Trump’s blistering attack on the media was quite a spectacle, but the truth is that it was desperately needed.  For decades, the mainstream media has dominated political discourse in this country no matter who has been in control of the White House or Congress.  They have become masters of guiding and shaping public opinion, and in recent years they have completely discarded any pretense of being “unbiased” or “objective”.  These monolithic media organizations relentlessly push the progressive agenda of their owners (the global elite), and that is why the “news” always seems to be just about the same no matter which network it is coming from.  Their monopoly is slowly being broken by the rise of the alternative media, but the truth is that most Americans still rely on just a handful of ultra-powerful media organizations for their news. (Read More…)


Why Melania Trump Leading The Public In The Lord’s Prayer At A Rally In Florida Was A Historic Event

Melania Trump Prayer At Florida Rally - YouTube ScreenshotWe just witnessed Melania Trump’s finest moment as First Lady so far.  After a week in which her husband declared war on the mainstream media, Melania absolutely electrified a huge crowd at a rally in Melbourne, Florida by reciting the Lord’s Prayer.  What Donald Trump had to share afterwards was remarkable as well, but that night will always be remembered for what Melania did.  After beginning with the phrase “let us pray”, Melania stunned the entire world by slowly but carefully leading the crowd in the Lord’s Prayer, and it is being reported that the assembled throng responded to her prayer with “thunderous applause“. (Read More…)


The Russian Love Affair With Donald Trump Sours As The U.S. And Russia Move Toward War

NATO Seasparrow surface missile is launched from the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush - Publc DomainIn recent months Donald Trump has been severely criticized by both Democrats and Republicans for not being sufficiently “anti-Russia”, but the truth is that the Trump administration has not been working hard enough to repair a relationship that is now souring very rapidly.  When Donald Trump won the election in November, the Russians celebrated tremendously, because they greatly preferred Trump over Hillary Clinton.  But just because Trump was victorious does not mean that our relationship with Russia will automatically improve.  Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin both have huge egos, and it is quite easy to imagine a scenario in which things between them go very, very badly. (Read More…)


New Apostolic Leader, Bill Johnson, Teams Up With Catholic Priests to ‘Proclaim the Gospel’

Jeff Maples of Pulpit & Pen reminds us that “It’s easy for the undiscerning to get caught up in the ecumenism of today’s false church. Everyone wants to be united because disunity is uncomfortable. But the Scriptures clearly teach that it’s the absence of clear doctrine and truth that causes division in the body (Rom. 16:17).”

With this in mind, NAR pastor and self-proclaimed “apostle” Bill Johnson is urging those who pay attention to his egregious teaching to team up with the apostate Roman Catholic Church to share a gospel that saves no one. Maples has the story:

According to the US Conference of Catholic Bishops website, the New Evangelization of Catholics:

calls each of us to deepen our faith, believe in the Gospel message and go forth to proclaim the Gospel. The focus of the New Evangelization calls all Catholics to be evangelized and then go forth to evangelize. In a special way, the New Evangelization is focused on ‘re-proposing’ the Gospel to those who have experienced a crisis of faith. Pope Benedict XVI called for the re-proposing of the Gospel “to those regions awaiting the first evangelization and to those regions where the roots of Christianity are deep but who have experienced a serious crisis of faith due to secularization.”1 The New Evangelization invites each Catholic to renew their relationship with Jesus Christ and his Church.

This is an effort initiated by the Roman Pontiff to draw people back into the Roman Catholic system of works righteousness. The crux is that those Catholics who have left the church should be “re-evangelized” and brought back in.

View article →

See our Research Paper on Roman Catholicism


Snowflakes Create Fake News Site To Let Liberals Live In Alternate Reality Where Hillary Is President

Liberals seeking refuge from reality now have a fake news website where they can pretend to live in a world where Hillary Clinton is president.

EDITOR’S NOTE: When liberals are in power, they walk about swaggering, crowing and issuing endless reams of job-killing regulations and tax increases. But when they lose, they whimper and cry like little babies, seeking safe spaces and counseling. The latter, and not the former, is what we contend to be the true state of the American Liberal in 2017. 

“Approval ratings for President Clinton hit 89 percent,” “Confused by fake news, Redditers think Trump is president” and “DOJ considers charging Trump with treason” are just a few headlines featured on HillaryBeatTrump.org, a satirical news site devoted to covering stories from an alternate universe where Hillary won last November’s election.

“In the midst of a Constitutional crisis, this is our response,” the site’s description reads. “Long live the true president, Hillary Rodham Clinton.”

The site’s proprietors do not identify themselves online, and did not return TheDC’s request for comment, but their articles suggest they have liberal leanings.

The site’s articles single out prominent Republicans like Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and White House press secretary Sean Spicer for mockery.

“On Monday, Senator Ted Cruz went on Ellen to confess that he, of course, killed Deputy White House Counsel Vince Foster in 1993,” reads one recent article, which refers to Cruz as “the Republican front-runner to take on President Hillary Rodham Clinton in 2020.” source


UK Experiencing Massive ‘Radiation Spike’ Sparks Fears Putin Has Tested Nuclear Weapon In The Arctic

FEARS are mounting Vladimir Putin’s military have carried out a secret Arctic nuke test after a huge spike in dangerous radiation levels were detected across Europe.

The worrying claims came as the US Air Force sent a special WC-135 Constant Phoenix to  RAF Mildenhall – whose main mission is to detect and identify nuclear explosions from the air.

Along with monitoring nuke testing, the WC-135 is sometimes used to track radioactive activity as happened after the Chernobyl nuclear plant disaster in the then Soviet Union in 1986. One of these aircraft was also deployed near North Korea in anticipation of Kim Jong-un’s controversial rocket launches in recent years.

Although they cross the European airspace from time-to-time, their deployment to the UK is still rare. And there has been no official statement from the US military about the reasons why it has been deployed here.

However, sources suggest the aircraft has been tasked with investigating the spike in radiation levels detected in northern Europe since January.

And some respected websites claim there are growing fears within military circles that Russia has been testing its nuclear might ahead of a new conflict. Many point to the radiation spike as “proof” the Russians have restarted nuclear weapons testing at Novaya Zemlya near the Arctic.

Others point to the lack of recorded seismic activity to doubt the claims. However, the deployment of the WC-135 to the UK seems to add weight to the test theory.

America’s highest ranking military officer has compared current tensions with Russia to the height of the Cold War ahead of a face-to-face showdown with his Kremlin counterpart.

General Joe Dunford said an immediate meeting with Gen. Valeriy Gerasimov is “absolutely critical” while strains between the two superpowers reach breaking point.

Last Wednesday it was revealed that Russian jets buzzed a US destroyer docked off the Romanian coast in a blatant show of force slammed by Navy officers as “unsafe and unprofessional”. And a 200-crew Russian spy ship armed with surface-to-air missiles reached as close as 30 miles to the Connecticut coastline — and a key US submarine base.

At the weekend, the US Navy released a statement saying its testing of two Trident missiles was “not in response to any world events” after scores of people filmed a mysterious light trailing through the night sky.

Yesterday, we revealed how radioactive particles had been detected in seven different European countries and scientists can’t explain where they have come from.

Traces of Iodine-131 were found in Norway, Finland, Poland, Czech Republic, Germany, France and Spain in January, but the public were not immediately alerted. These radioactive particles are produced by atomic bomb explosions or nuclear disasters such as Chernobyl or Fukushima. source


A Quantum Leap Into the Paranormal

Feb 20, 2017 10:52 am | Marsha West

In this piece over at truthXchange, Dr. Peter Jones warns that more and more people are experiencing visions of divine light…encounters with various blissful and wrathful archetypal deities…communication with spirit guides and superhuman entities…contact with shamanic power animals… Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! “Christian, stay alert!” advises Dr. Jones for we are “moving […]

The post A Quantum Leap Into the Paranormal appeared first on Berean Research.


Leaving the NAR Church: Maaike’s story

Feb 20, 2017 09:17 am | Amy Spreeman

After literally hours and hours of that prayer I saw myself as a 3 month old baby being raped by my father. I recovered memories about being raised in a satanic cult, abused in the most awful ways possible and suddenly the prophecy about giving my heart to Satan became clear. Maaike is from the […]

The post Leaving the NAR Church: Maaike’s story appeared first on Berean Research.


Stop Calling Error ‘Anointed’

Feb 18, 2017 12:56 pm | Marsha West

In a spot on piece over at Pulpit & Pen, Costi Hinn calls for Christians to get back to the basics, meaning biblical Christianity.  He raises a two fold question: “What in the world has happened to the body of Christ and what semblance of biblical orthodoxy will be left for our children and grandchildren?” The way […]

The post Stop Calling Error ‘Anointed’ appeared first on Berean Research.


Leaving the NAR Church: Carter’s Story

Feb 17, 2017 05:00 am | Amy Spreeman

“After their prophecies, visions, and declarations were all proven false, not a single one of them apologized to the grieving father or repented of their vain and powerless deeds.“ Carter has watched his dear friends fall hard for the counterfeit promises of a most dangerous deception. He has allowed me to share his story as […]

The post Leaving the NAR Church: Carter’s Story appeared first on Berean Research.


 

Leaving the NAR Church: Jared’s Story

Feb 15, 2017 04:16 am | Amy Spreeman

The deliverance ministry counselor told my wife to close her eyes and allow the demons to speak through her. He explained that each demon has a name, and if bound “by the blood” must be truthful and submissive. Jared and his wife had been experiencing what they called demonic thoughts, and sought help through a […]

The post Leaving the NAR Church: Jared’s Story appeared first on Berean Research.


How Deliverance Ministries Lead People to Bondage

Feb 14, 2017 07:56 pm | Amy Spreeman

There’s no doubt that Christians are in a war.  Every day we see evil in our world, and we have an enemy who passionately hates that we belong to Jesus Christ. Some churches attempt to engage with the demonic realm in spiritual warfare. Are these so-called “Deliverance Ministries” biblical? See our White Paper on Angels, […]

The post How Deliverance Ministries Lead People to Bondage appeared first on Berean Research.


Top Headlines – 2/21/2017

  • Global Stocks and Bond Yields Rise (Read More)
  • Despite Dissents on White House Policy, Mattis Holds Sway (Read More)
  • Trump’s Travel Ban Won’t Hit the U.S. Economy, At Least This Year (Read More)
  • Pundit Brings ‘Global Jihadist Movement’ Theory to White House (Read More)
  • HSBC Plunges After Missing Profit Estimates on Revenue Drop (Read More)
  • Euro-Area Economic Recovery Broadens as France Outpaces Germany (Read More)
  • Oil rises towards top of recent trading range as OPEC cuts output (Read More)
  • PBOC to Cut Reserve Requirement for Qualifying Banks (Read More)
  • China adjusts yuan midpoint mechanism – sources (Read More)
  • Chinese Banks’ Off-Book Wealth Products Exceed $3.8 Trillion (Read More)
  • China Relaxes Curbs on Stock-Index Futures Trading (Read More)
  • Yield curve proves hard to steer for nervous BOJ (Read More)
  • States Push to Raise Gasoline Taxes (Read More)
  • ECB Scouts for Forward Guidance Pitfalls on Road to Stimulus End (Read More)
  • Kraft-Unilever Deal Is Off, but Warren Buffett’s Anomalies Live On (Read More)
  • France’s Le Pen cancels meet with Lebanon grand mufti over headscarf (Read More)
  • Saudi Arabia Favors New York for Aramco IPO (Read More)
  • Samsung Heir, Seeking to Modernize Opaque Culture, Faces Scandal (Read More)
  • Burger King and Tim Hortons owner nears deal to buy Popeyes (Read More)
  • China opposes U.S. naval patrols in South China Sea (Read More)
  • Seoul Faces Dilemma Between U.S. Protection, China Trade (Read More)
  • The Next Financial Crisis Might Be in Your Driveway (Read More)

Singapore PM, hosting Netanyahu, endorses ‘two-state’ plan

Minister close to Netanyahu insists the PM still backs two-state solution

Mideast can’t agree what one-state solution means

PA leader calls on EU to recognize ‘Palestine’

Bennett: Palestinian state would lead to refugee crisis for Israel

Top minister: Peace ‘possible’ under ‘very supportive’ Trump

PM has not backtracked on pledge for new Amona settlement, says aide

Liberman: Israel would be crazy to defy Trump on settlements

Minister: Israel expects Trump to keep vow to move embassy to Jerusalem

US Jewish leaders urge Israel to query Trump on anti-Semitism

White House denounces acts of anti-Semitism

“Why does the U.N. obsess over Israel?” – Nikki Haley

New US Ambassador to UN Nikki Haley Draws Praise From Pro-Israel Community After Calling Out Security Council for Double Standard Toward Jewish State

New wave of bomb threats at Jewish centers across US

Dozens of headstones damaged at Jewish cemetery near St. Louis

Nasrallah: ‘Israel should think twice before entering a war in Lebanon’

Report: Israel warns Hezbollah of ‘colossal retaliation’ if attacked

Arab Israeli charged with planning TA bus bombing, teaching IS how to make nerve gas

Two rockets from Sinai hit southern Israel, IDF says

ISIS Egypt affiliate: Christians are our ‘favorite prey’

Governments ‘must address corruption to defeat IS’, says report

Libya’s eastern authority bans women travelling solo

The migrant slave trade is booming in Libya. Why is the world ignoring it?

Talk of Terror Listing for Muslim Brotherhood Alarms Some Arab Allies

Islamic State vows more attacks on Egypt’s Christians

Defense minister says Sinai’s Islamic State ‘not a serious threat’

Iraq Poised For Disaster As 750,000 Civilians Remain Trapped In ISIS-Held Mosul

Mosul offensive: Iraqi army battles for outskirts of IS city

Trump’s defense chief: ‘We’re not in Iraq to seize anybody’s oil’

US troops in Iraq operating closer to front lines

French far-right chief says Assad solution to Syrian crisis

Four Russian servicemen killed by roadside bomb in Syria

Steinitz: Trump’s test is to expel Iran from Syria

Threatening US, Iran general says his country will be a ‘graveyard’ for attackers

Iran bans private drones from skies over Tehran amid security fears

‘Erdogan assassination plot’ suspects go on trial in Turkey

Turkey dismisses 227 more judges, prosecutors in post-coup probe

Nearly a dozen passengers walked through unattended TSA checkpoint at JFK, police say

House report: TSA airport security standards could fail to prevent insider threats

Trump comment highlights dramatic rise in Swedish crime rate

Trump may have been unclear, but Sweden experiencing a migrant crime wave

Ami Horowitz defends Sweden refugee claims from backlash over Trump remark

Meanwhile, Rioting Breaks Out In Sweden

Migrants are to blame for most serious crimes in Sweden, police officer reveals

Police Officer Who Spoke out on Migrant Crime Now Under Investigation for Racial Hatred

Former Trump pal Russell Simmons leads ‘I Am A Muslim Too’ rally against president

Mayor de Blasio, protesters declare ‘I am a Muslim, too’ in rally against Trump’s immigration policies

Day Without Immigrants: ‘More than 100 workers’ fired over strike

Fmr. McDonald’s USA CEO on Anti-Trump Rallies: You Don’t Go to Work, You Get Fired

Trump administration drafts plan to raise asylum bar, speed deportations

Democrats are obsessed with power, not effective education

Democratic resignation at FEC opens door for Trump to “drain the swamp”

Bill Bennett: Press can’t stand that Trump doesn’t fear them

‘Not My Presidents Day’ rallies bring thousands to the streets

Trump Agenda Is Beset by Opposition on Many Fronts

Even Norway Is Riding the Populist Wave of Politics

Outspoken general named Trump’s top security adviser

NATO chief vows Europe will pay ‘fair burden’; Pence says ‘This must end’

Vice President Mike Pence Vows U.S. Support for European Union

American flag has 51 stars for Pence visit to European Union

UK Conservative MPs back Trump visit in fiery parliament debate

Washington prepares to bring North Koreans to U.S. for talks: report

Kim Jong-nam Killing Was ‘Terrorist Act’ by North Korea, South Says

US Navy carrier deploys to South China Sea for first time in Trump presidency

Russia’s ambassador to United Nations dies in NYC at 64

Kremlin denies knowledge of Ukraine peace plan pushed by Trump associates

Saudi Arabia Breaks Records on Oil Exports and Output for Year

Concerns Grow About A Nuclear “Incident” In Europe After Spike In Radioactive Iodine Levels

5.4 magnitude earthquake hits near Mata-Utu, Wallis and Futuna

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Taron, Papua New Guinea

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 24,000ft

Sinabung volcano in Indonesia erupts to 12,000ft

Rivers in the sky causing widespread chaos in California

Oroville residents prepare to evacuate at a moment’s notice as rainstorm rolls in Monday

Flood fears renewed in California, and 3 tornadoes hit Texas

Harsh weather in Afghanistan kills dozens in blizzard, rainstorms

Famine declared in South Sudan; 4.9 million people need urgent help

Study: Venezuelans lost 19 lbs. on average over past year due to lack of food

Norway Pledges $10 Million to Counter Trump’s Global Anti-abortion Move

Utah’s anesthesia abortion law unenforced

Drop in teenage suicide attempts linked to legalisation of same-sex marriage

LGBTI rights gains in unlikely countries

‘I pee with LGBT’: Oscar-nominated director Richard Linklater directs ad against Texas bathroom bill

Argentinian women will protest topless to claim right to sunbathe bare-chested

Japan men strip off to fight for lucky charms thrown by a priest at Japan’s annual Naked Man Festival

China’s move to ban fentanyl could help curb drug addiction crisis in US

Anne Graham Lotz Praises Melania Trump’s ‘Courageous’ Lord’s Prayer Reading Amid Heavy Ridicule

NAR Leader, Bill Johnson, Teams Up With Catholic Priests to “Proclaim the Gospel”

Five Things You Should Know About Jim Bakker’s End Times Food Products

Just What the Church Needs: “Glitter Ash Wednesday”

Costi Hinn – Touch Not My Anointed

Ken Cascio – Pastoral Oil

Church Militant – Right-wing Catholic fringe group building multimedia empire near Detroit

NJ pastor offers church as sanctuary to undocumented immigrants during ICE raids

France passes law imposing up to two years prison for running pro-life websites

Man Charged in Turkey Nightclub Massacre Says His Intent Was to Target Christians

How to Deal with False Teachers

There is Nothing to Fear in Leaving Alcoholics Anonymous

Gnostic Nonsense – A Transformational Oil Spill Is Coming” Says Charisma Magazine

PepsiCo signs on as first title sponsor as T.D. Jakes’ MegaFest returns to Dallas in June

Why SBC’s Mosque-Gate Has Nothing to Do with Religious Liberty

SBC’s David Platt Apologizes for Division Caused by Support of Islamic Society’s Right to Build Mosque

Prestonwood Baptist will withhold Southern Baptist funds as it mulls organization’s direction

Melania Trump Opens Florida Rally With The Lords Prayer
Regardless of your political leanings this is pretty remarkable

Meanwhile in NYC – Loud Muslim Call To Prayer In Times Square As Muslims Protest Trump, Shout ‘Allahu Akbar!

Norma McCorvey, Jane Roe of Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion nationwide, dies at 69


Powerful Magnitude 6.5 earthquake strikes Bolivia

Posted: 21 Feb 2017 07:35 AM PST

The United States Geological Survey reports a preliminary magnitude 6.5 earthquake struck near Padilla, Bolivia on Tuesday. The quake hit at 10:09 AM local time…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

China opposes U.S. naval patrols in South China Sea

Posted: 21 Feb 2017 07:29 AM PST

China said on Tuesday it opposed action by other countries under the pretext of freedom of navigation that undermined its sovereignty, after a U.S. aircraft…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

India’s Barren Island volcano active again

Posted: 21 Feb 2017 07:24 AM PST

 India’s only live volcano is active again, say Indian scientists who witnessed the mountain spewing lava and billowing clouds of black smoke. The Barren Island…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Mega-mosque being forced on Christian refugee community

Posted: 21 Feb 2017 06:54 AM PST

A city of 130,000 people in southeastern Michigan is under the gun of Islamic pressure following its denial of a mega-mosque in a residential neighborhood…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

The World Shifted With These 2 Prophetic Events Over the Weekend

Posted: 20 Feb 2017 07:25 PM PST

“What a difference a day makes.” On Saturday, Feb. 18, my friend and sister Norma (Roe No More) McCorvey passed away. Norma was a valiant…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Major pagan god of Bible honored by world government

Posted: 20 Feb 2017 07:19 PM PST

It was unveiled in London. It was displayed in New York, just steps away from Ground Zero. And now, the harbinger of the pagan god…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

I Am Releasing Reformation and Awakening in America’

Posted: 20 Feb 2017 12:22 PM PST

Prophetic author and speaker Cindy Jacobs shared a new word from the Lord with Elijah List readers on Friday about a period of reformation and…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

It Is Absolutely Outrageous for the Government to Force Christians to Violate Their Faith

Posted: 20 Feb 2017 12:15 PM PST

(By Michael Brown) The more you see something shocking, the less shocking it appears, and the more something outrageous happens, the less outrageous it seems…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Why Melania Trump Leading the Public in the Lord’s Prayer at a Rally in Florida Was a Historic Event

Posted: 20 Feb 2017 12:12 PM PST

(Reported By Michael Snyder) We just witnessed Melania Trump’s finest moment as first lady so far. After a week in which her husband declared war…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Indiana lawmakers consider school prayer measure

Posted: 20 Feb 2017 12:09 PM PST

Indiana public school students could pray aloud in a public forum under a measure lawmakers are considering. Democratic state Rep. John Bartlett says his measure…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

DEVELOPING: Russian ambassador to UN dies suddenly in New York…

Posted: 20 Feb 2017 12:03 PM PST

Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations, a veteran diplomat known as a potent and personable voice for his country’s interests as he sparred with his…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

TSA allows JFK passengers to walk through security checkpoint without being screened…

Posted: 20 Feb 2017 12:00 PM PST

Eleven unidentified passengers walked through a security lane without being screened at Kennedy Airport early Monday because the TSA left the area open and unattended,…

Read more at End Time Headlines.


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(Alternative News, Apologetics, Current Events, Commentary, Opinion, Theology, Discernment Blog, Devotionals, Christian Internet Evangelism & Missions Activist).

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What is The Gospel? (Video and Tract Collection)

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In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107,material here is distributed without profit for research and educational purposes.

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Deadly Doctrines: The Pattern and Protection

Paul warns Timothy that people “will turn away from listening to the truth.” The first step in destroying a church is a corporate rejection of the plain teaching of the Bible. First, one individual turns away, and then another, until most of the congregation begins to question what they once held to be true.

We have learned that the church of every age is plagued by false teachers and their deadly doctrine. We have met seven of those false teachers and seen the devastation they bring. We have identified five tests we can apply to any doctrine to determine whether it is false or true. But this leaves us with some important questions: How does a church come to reject sound doctrine? How do we guard ourselves against false teachers and their deadly doctrines? How do we protect ourselves, our families, and our churches from their seductive lies? Thankfully, God has given us clear guidance in his Word, showing us how churches descend into deadly doctrine and how we may protect ourselves against it.

The Pattern of Deadly Doctrine

Most biblical scholars agree that 2 Timothy is Paul’s final letter. He has nearly come to the end of his life, so he picks up his pen to write once more to his young friend. In his last words to Timothy, Paul makes sure to warn him about the danger of false teachers. “For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths” (2 Timothy 4:3-4). In these verses he gazes into the future and describes a church being undermined and destroyed. This is not a prophecy of the death of a single congregation, but a general description of the death of a thousand. He outlines four steps that can progressively lead any congregation from health to death.

Step 1: Reject truth. Paul warns Timothy that people “will turn away from listening to the truth.” The first step in destroying a church is a corporate rejection of the plain teaching of the Bible. First, one individual turns away, and then another, until most of the congregation begins to question what they once held to be true. This may happen gradually, as distrust toward God’s revealed truth spreads. Or it may come swiftly, as love of the world chokes the fruitfulness of a congregation. Either way, what was once love of truth morphs into dislike and then disgust. What was once hatred of error becomes intrigue and then interest.

Step 2: Reject truth-tellers. As a church turns away from the truth, its members soon turn against truth-tellers. Paul tells Timothy that in that days to come, people “will not endure sound teaching.” Such people will no longer tolerate the teaching they once enjoyed. Because they have begun to question the truth, they will turn against those who boldly proclaim it. The very teachers who once drew and delighted them will begin to repulse them.

Step 3: Embrace false teachers. Once a church has rejected those who teach the truth, it will replace them with teachers who give them what they want to hear. “Having itching ears, they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions.” This church now desires novelty over truth, platitudes over exhortation. They want religion, and they even want the label “Christian,” so long as they can keep society’s respect and stay palatable to a godless world. So they invite false teachers to guide them into a deeper, fuller twisting of the truth.

Step 4: Embrace false doctrine. Once people have rejected truth and truth-tellers, and once they have found teachers who will lead them into twisting truth, they will “wander off into myths.” Now they will embrace full-out heresy. They will become so hardened in their sin that they will elevate error to the status of truth. In their rebellion, they will celebrate in the name of God the very things that God hates. Under the guidance of false teachers, they will fully embrace deadly doctrine. They will wander off, like sheep straying away from the watchful care of a good shepherd into a pack of wolves.

Paul outlines a tragic progression that begins with people growing weary and ashamed of truth. No longer willing to endure sound teaching, they get rid of the truth-tellers and accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions. Inevitably, they turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. Countless churches have been destroyed by this deadly pattern.

The Protection Against Deadly Doctrine

Remember that Paul is writing to young pastor Timothy to instruct him in protecting his congregation. How can Timothy guard his church against succumbing to false teachers and deadly doctrine? Should he study the methods of the heretics so he can anticipate their every move? Should he study the doctrine of the heretics so he can refute it point by point? Paul offers a far simpler solution: preach. “Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching” (2 Timothy 4:2).

The solution to false teachers and deadly doctrine is not to obsess with falsehoods, but to pursue truth. The church that remains faithful to God is the church that remains faithful to the Word of God. Here is how Paul tells Timothy—and each of us—to protect the church against the pattern of deadly doctrine.

Preach the Word. The church that wishes to remain healthy must preach the word of God. Preaching is only as powerful as its faithfulness to the Bible. The most faithful way to preach the Word is to preach expositorily (or expositionally), to ensure the point of a text becomes the point of the sermon. This form of preaching constrains the pastor to God’s Word and ensures the congregation that every word is drawn faithfully from the Scriptures.

Read More

The post Deadly Doctrines: The Pattern and Protection appeared first on The Aquila Report.

Americans Divided on the Importance of Church (Fewer People In America Are Attending Church Than Ever Before)

While tens of millions of Americans attend church each weekend, the practice has declined in recent years. According to Barna Group’s 2014 tracking data, overall church attendance has dipped from 43% in 2004 to 36% today. But beyond a dip in attendance numbers, the nature of churchgoing is changing. Regular attenders used to be people who went to church three or more weekends each month—or even several times a week. Now people who show up once every four to six weeks consider themselves regular churchgoers. Many pastors and church leaders are accounting for sporadic attendance in their ministry planning.

Furthermore, the percentage of people who have not attended a church function at all in the past six months has surged in the last decade from one-third to nearly two-fifths of all Americans. The shift is even more drastic among younger Americans: more than half of Millennials and Gen Xers say they have not been to church in the last six months.

Read more here.

Rating the Presidents—and Obama

Editor’s note: This article first appeared at The American Spectator.

I’ve been getting emails from bewildered colleagues asking about a survey of presidential scholars that determined that Barack Obama is the 12th best president in the history of the United States, putting him near the top quartile of our presidents.

How can this be? I, too, was mystified, especially given that I participated in the survey.

The survey was conducted by the impeccably fair C-SPAN. Few sources do their job like C-SPAN does. If you want truly unfiltered news, C-SPAN is unrivaled for its ability to simply place a camera in a room and let reality speak for itself.

When it comes to surveys of presidents, C-SPAN likewise has no peer. I remember the nauseating presidential surveys in the 1980s and 1990s. They were mere measurements of the liberalism of the academy — that is, liberal historians and liberal political scientists expressing their liberalism by their liberal rankings of presidents. It was a farce.

C-SPAN, fortunately, has endeavored to provide a valuable corrective. In 2000, 2009, and 2017, C-SPAN set out to do its own survey and has indeed assembled a more rounded group of scholars. (I was among those surveyed for the 2009 ranking, as well.) To be sure, most (if not the vast majority) of the scholars surveyed are clearly on the left, but there are a decent number of conservatives: By my estimate, over a dozen, possibly as many as 20. Of course, that’s still far out of proportion with the population at large, where self-identified conservatives have outnumbered liberals for decades (usually in the range of 35-40 percent self-identified conservatives vs. 20-25 percent self-identified liberals). C-SPAN needs to do better next time around. A field of 10-20 conservatives among 91 participants isn’t good, albeit better than the nonsense we used to see in biased surveys.

Likewise befitting C-SPAN’s fairness, the ranking criteria for the presidents are commendably nonpartisan. The criteria are obviously intended to remove ideology from those doing the judging. Here are the 10 criteria:

Public Persuasion
Crisis Leadership
Economic Management
Moral Authority
International Relations
Administrative Skills
Relations with Congress
Vision / Setting an Agenda
Pursued Equal Justice For All
Performance Within Context of Times

For each of the 10 criteria, a president received a scored ranging from one (“not effective”) to 10 (“very effective”). I’d like readers to pause and look at those criteria carefully. Imagine if you were doing the judging.

Given these criteria — again, essentially non-ideological criteria — I personally had no choice but to score very highly presidents like FDR and Woodrow Wilson and LBJ, all of whose presidencies I either did not approve of or outright despised or found destructive. But facts are facts: These presidents were extremely effective. No, I personally didn’t like how they were effective, but they were effective nonetheless. Did Wilson have an agenda and vision and get it through? Oh, yes. You bet he did. So did FDR and LBJ.

And yet, those same criteria prompted me to rank Washington, Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Reagan, and Eisenhower very high. I will not here share exactly how I tallied each, but I will say that those presidents in my top 10 were very similar to those in the overall top 10. Here’s the top 10 that C-SPAN compiled:

Abraham Lincoln
Washington
FDR
Teddy Roosevelt
Eisenhower
Truman
Jefferson
Kennedy
Reagan
LBJ

Following at 11 and 12, respectively, were Woodrow Wilson and Obama. (For the record, I gave Kennedy a decent rating, but to place him in the top 10, and ahead of Reagan, is just plain stupid. Gee, the guy wasn’t even president three full years.)

But what about Barack Obama at 12? I’ll say this as nicely and professionally as I can: I find this utterly perplexing. Do the exercise yourself. Go through those 10 categories. Ascribe Obama a score of 1 to 10, and do so relative to other presidents you’ve ranked. Where would you give Obama a 10? How many (if any) scores above a 5 would you give Obama? For that matter, how would you not score Reagan so much higher than Obama? Yes, Reagan finished with an overall ranking of nine, which is better than Obama, but his total composite score wasn’t much higher than Obama’s.

Seriously, are even liberals that happy with the Obama presidency? Try to remove your ideological lens, whether left or right, and assess these questions:

What did Barack Obama accomplish? What is the Obama legacy? What was the Obama vision/agenda and (more important, since we’re measuring effectiveness) how successful was he in implementing it? In 2012, at the Democratic National Convention, Obama’s promoters could do no better than come up with silly placards about how Obama “got Osama” and “saved GM.” Unlike the vast majority of two-term presidents, Obama’s re-election numbers were much worse. In fact, Barack Obama was the first president ever re-elected with fewer popular votes, fewer Electoral College votes, a lower percentage and percentage margin of victory, and winning fewer states. He never had a sustained period of high favorability. He couldn’t elect a successor to carry on his legacy. To the contrary, Donald Trump plans to repudiate any Obama legacy.

Where is the list of signature domestic achievements by Obama? Obamacare maybe? It was a disaster from the roll-out, and it’s going to be repealed and replaced.

What were Obama’s defining moments of crisis leadership? Where’s his Cuban Missile Crisis? Did he even have a crisis to lead? How about Benghazi as a candidate?

Where was Barack Obama’s Camp David? What did he do for the Middle East, for Arab-Israeli relations, for relations with Russia, the EU, NATO, the G-20? Where’s his NAFTA? Where’s his summit with the Russian leadership? Where’s his missile-reduction treaty? Where’s his chemical weapons ban?

As for Obama’s economic record, it was colossally bad. My economist colleague Mark Hendrickson calls it a “shocking historically weak economic performance,” as many others have shown. During the eight years of Barack Obama’s presidency, the average annual real GDP growth was 1.5 percent, notes Hendrickson, “the weakest economic performance of any post-WWII president, and the fourth worst ever.” And to try to still blame that failure on George W. Bush after eight years is ludicrous. Obama’s GDP growth in 2016 (eight years after Bush) was a terrible 1.6 percent.

Bush’s economy grew better than that, and he inherited a recession and was hit with 9/11 his first year, which devastated the economy. In fact, not only was George W. Bush’s economic-growth rate better than Obama’s, but so was Jimmy Carter’s. Yes, Carter — typically upheld as the dubious yardstick of economic incompetence — actually had more than double Obama’s GDP growth (3.3 percent)!

Any deficit reduction under Obama (after he exploded the deficit to unprecedented record highs in the first two years of the Pelosi-Reid Congress) is attributable in large part to the Republican Congress that liberals excoriated for spending cuts (and now want to take responsibility for the subsequent deficit reduction). The Obama debt exploded way worse than the debt under Reagan and George W. Bush.

So, where would you score Obama on Economic Management? I can’t imagine anything beyond a 3.

In what way was Obama a master at public persuasion? What new constituencies did he generate? Where are the Obama Republicans, akin to the Reagan Democrats? How were his relations with Congress? Did you observe stellar “administrative skills” in Obama? His notorious lack of meetings with his NSC and intelligence and security staffs were breathtaking in their lack of any administration. As I reported here in 2012, Obama attended only 44 percent of his Daily Briefs in the first 1,225 days of his administration. For 2012, he attended a little over a third. This was totally contrary to Bush and other predecessors. Reagan and Ike both had hands-off leadership styles, but at least they attended meetings.

Who gave him a 10 for that category?

And if you’re extolling Obama’s attempted fundamental transformation of America’s public-school toilets via executive order, or his illuminating the White House in rainbow colors to celebrate the Supreme Court’s Obergefell decision, or his suing the Little Sisters of the Poor via the HHS Mandate, sorry, but those are not among the categories for evaluation.

I want to see the case made by the guy or gal who thinks that Barack Obama merits being listed near the top 10 presidents in history. Actually, some must have rated him in the top 5, because I guarantee my score for Obama (low as it was) surely dropped him a few pegs.

In short, I’m stunned. Based on the criteria we were given for ranking these presidents, I cannot conceive how Obama could possibly score well. I don’t see how Bill Clinton didn’t rate higher than Obama.

As noted, there were some conservatives on C-SPAN’s list. I’m wondering if the conservatives didn’t send in their surveys. The liberal historians must have gone bonkers in merrily giving Obama the highest scores in every category. But forget about that. This shouldn’t be a liberal-conservative thing. That’s the point. Literally half of my top 10 or 12 were Democrats, and I’m no Democrat.

Clearly, the liberal scholars were not able to separate their partisanship when it came to objectively judging Obama. There’s no way that Barack Obama should rate the 12th-best president in U.S. history. Not a chance.

Source: Rating the Presidents—and Obama

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Leaving the NAR Church: Maaike’s story.

churchwatch central

Our good friend and fellow polemicist Amy Spreeman, contributor to Pirate Christian Radio, continues with the 12th article in her series about those who found themselves in this dreadful bondage, and what happened when their eyes were opened.

“After literally hours and hours of that prayer I saw myself as a 3 month old baby being raped by my father. I recovered memories about being raised in a satanic cult, abused in the most awful ways possible and suddenly the prophecy about giving my heart to Satan became clear.”

Maaike is from the Netherlands, and her story of inner healing took her back to her childhood, where false memories were inserted into her head. This Sozo or Theophostic – type healing is foundational to New Apostolic Reformation “deliverance ministries,” which Maaike was a part of.

In this series, I want to take readers beyond the textbook What is the New…

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What Christians Need to Understand about Mercy

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What does it mean for Christians to be merciful? Jeremiah Johnson, a writer for Grace to You, has written a blog post titled “Blessed are the Merciful” on GTY.org. He starts out by quoting Martyn Lloyd Jones from his work, Studies in the Sermon on the Mount:

A Christian is something before he does something.

This reflects what Jesus says in His sermon on the mount in Matthew 5:2-11:

“And he opened his mouth and taught them, saying:
‘Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.’
‘Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.’
‘Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.’
‘Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.’
‘Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.’ 
‘Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.’
‘Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.’
‘Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.’
‘Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.’” (bold emphasis added)

These beatitudes reflect a heart attitude; righteousness comes from the heart and not works.  This doesn’t mean that good works don’t have a place in the Christian’s life because they do…but what motivates good works matters to Christ.

Johnson quotes John MacArthur from his book, The Only Way to Happiness:

“Living as a Christian means there is to be no veneer, no facade. Christianity is something that happens to us at the very center of our being, and from there it flows out to the activities of life. God has never been interested in only the blood of bulls and goats. He has never been interested in any superficial spiritual activity unless the heart is right. (see Amos 5:21-24) ”

The beatitude relating to mercy address an inward heart attitude, but it also relays how we are called to relate to others. So it follows that if God has granted us mercy, we will grant mercy to others. Johnson quotes MacArthur again in his definition of mercy:

“Mercy is seeing a man without food and giving him food. Mercy is seeing a person begging for love and giving him love. Mercy is seeing someone lonely and giving him company. Mercy is meeting the need, not just feeling it.”

So how can we show mercy to others, and how can we live it out every day?

Mercy shows up in our relationships: friendships, family, marriage, parenting, work, people we meet, etc.  Our natural tendency is to act in sinful, selfish ways; it is only with a transformed heart that we can truly be merciful toward someone else. Johnson references MacArthur’s direction for showing mercy through  pitying, prodding, praying, and preaching.

1. Mercy pities.

Today pitying has a negative tone associated with it, as no one wants to be pitied for fear they’ll lose their pride. However, there is a righteous pitying which Stephen displays in Acts 7:60:

“And falling to his knees he cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep.”

2. Mercy prods.

Prodding also has a negative association in that people tend to find prodding by others to be annoying. This also has to do with pride and wanting to accomplish everything on our own. But merciful, gentle prodding done with the right motivation can aid in the confrontation of sin. Christians are called to prod with compassion and care, offering truth with grace and mercy.

3. Mercy prays.

It is merciful to pray for those who do not know God, and it is also merciful to pray with those who do not know God. As Christians we are called to pray for the lost, our neighbors, and the disobedient. MacArthur explains, “Our prayer is an act of mercy, for it releases God’s blessing.”

4. Mercy preaches.

How do you preach mercy to others? By sharing the gospel; for it is through the gospel that you first learned of mercy. MacArthur states, “I believe preaching the gospel is the most necessary and merciful thing you can do for the lost soul.

If we’re not pointing those we love, those we know, and those we just met to the gospel then “we’re withholding the greatest mercy imaginable,” writes Johnson.

Johnson brings us full circle to Matthew 5:7 by pointing out:

Getting back to the blessing of Matthew 5:7, what can we expect as the result of showing such mercy to others? Christ says the merciful “shall receive mercy.” That’s not, as some have tried to claim, a promise of reciprocal kindness, peace, and harmony between man. Christ isn’t guaranteeing us that people will treat us the way we treat them. Instead, He’s explaining that the merciful will receive mercy from God.”

Since we have received mercy from God, we are called to be merciful in all things and to all people. Because we have been forgiven, we are called to forgive all wrongs against us. As merciful Christians, we are called to show mercy just as Christ showed us mercy. This means mercy to those we love, mercy to those we disagree with, mercy to the refugees, orphans, widows, and the lost.

To read Jeremiah Johnson’s article in its entirety, please visit GTY.org.

Crosswalk Contributor Michael J. Kruger advises,

“In summary, we should be clear that both gospel proclamation and deeds of mercy should be part of the life of the church. We are not forced to choose. But we must also be careful to distinguish between them. Deeds of mercy are not the gospel.”

An act of mercy can be sharing the gospel with someone, but good deeds should never be substituted for the gospel. No matter how many good deeds we carry out, even with the right motivation, people still need to hear the gospel. Though we are called to extend mercy, our mercy cannot save someone…only God can, and God’s mercy must be shared through the words of the gospel.

Memory verse:
“Better is open rebuke than hidden love.” (Proverbs 27:5 ESV)

Related articles:
God is Merciful to the Grumblers
Vessels of Mercy: God, Grace, and Gollum
Never be Ashamed to Ask for Mercy

Related video:

BibleStudyTools.com: What does from biblestudytools on GodTube.

Image courtesy: Thinkstockphotos.com

Publication date: January 30, 2017

Liz Kanoy is an editor for Crosswalk.com.

February 21, 2017: Verse of the day

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24:1 the Lord’s. On His universal ownership, cf. Ex 19:5; Dt 10:14; Pss 50:12; 89:11; in the NT, cf. 1Co 3:21, 23.

24:2 This is a poetic, not a scientific, picture of creation (cf. Ge 1:9, 10; 7:11; 49:25; Ex 20:4; Dt 33:13; Job 26:10; Pss 74:13; 136:6; 2Pe 3:5).

MacArthur Study Bible

24:1–2 The Lord Is Creator and Owner of All. The Lord, the covenant God of Israel, is the one who founded the world (cf. Gen. 1:1–2:3, where he is called God, the transcendent Creator). The focus here is on the earth as the dry land, where human beings dwell, as distinguished from the waters (cf. Gen. 1:9–10). Paul quotes Ps. 24:1 in 1 Cor. 10:26 to explain that since God owns everything, foods are included, and thus may be enjoyed without qualms.

ESV Study Bible

24:1 The earth is the Lord’s. God created and sustains the whole earth; it belongs to Him. Paul cites this verse to establish the principle that there is no food, even things offered to pagan idols, which is unlawful for Christians to eat (1 Cor. 10:25, 26).

24:2 he has founded it upon the seas. This section reflects the creation account in Gen. 1. However, the sea is also a poetic image for evil. Throughout the psalms and the prophets, God is pictured as winning a victory over the sea (Ps. 29:10, 11; 77:16–20; 104:5–9; Nah. 1:4; Dan. 7).

Reformation Study Bible

February 21, 2017: Daily Devotional Guide Collection

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February 21

Aspects of Praise

Whoever offers praise glorifies Me.

Psalm 50:23

 

What does it mean to praise God? According to the Bible, praise involves three things:

  1. Reciting God’s attributes. One great reason to study the Old Testament is that it so powerfully reveals the character of God, enabling us to praise Him better.
  2. Reciting God’s works. The psalms are filled with lists of the great things God has done. He parted the Red Sea, brought His people out of Egypt, made water flow from a rock, fed Israel in the wilderness with manna from heaven, and did many other powerful works. When you praise God for all that He has done, your problems pale in comparison. Remembering God’s past performance glorifies Him and strengthens our faith.
  3. Giving thanks for God’s attributes and works. At the heart of praise is thanksgiving. Praising God gives Him glory. No matter what happens in our lives, we are to express our thanks to Him for all His attributes and gracious works.[1]

February 21 God’s Great Mercy

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.”

1 Peter 1:3

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Because of His mercy, God desires to lift sinners out of their pitiful condition.

Several years ago I spent about a week in India. Each day I saw countless starving, diseased people with no home but a few square feet of filthy street. I could not help but feel compassion and pity on those people who lived in such misery.

In a spiritual sense, though, before God saved us, we were each even more pathetic than any beggar in India. Spiritually, we “were dead in [our] trespasses and sins … and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ” (Eph. 2:1, 3–5). God saw our wretched condition and was moved to do something about it.

How does mercy compare with grace? Mercy has respect to man’s wretched, miserable condition; grace has respect to man’s guilt, which has caused that condition. God gives us mercy to change our condition; He gives us grace to change our position. While grace takes us from guilt to acquittal, mercy takes us from misery to glory.

Doesn’t it give you great joy to know that God not only removed your guilt but looked at you and had compassion? And He’s not through giving us mercy: “The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Thy faithfulness” (Lam. 3:22–23). We can always “draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and may find grace to help in time of need” (Heb. 4:16).

✧✧✧

Suggestions for Prayer: Thank God for His great mercy, for the forgiveness and blessings you have as His child.

For Further Study: Luke 15:11–32 contains the well–known parable of the prodigal son, a moving illustration of God’s loving compassion. What was the son’s condition when he returned? ✧ What was his father’s reaction? ✧ How does God respond to us when we turn to Him in repentance and humility?[2]


FEBRUARY 21

STOP LAMENTING AND LOOK UP

He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.

—John 14:21

In seeking to know God better we must keep firmly in mind that we need not try to persuade God. He is already persuaded in our favor, not by our prayers but by the generous goodness of His own heart. “It is God’s nature to give Himself to every virtuous soul,” says Meister Eckhart. “Know then that God is bound to act, to pour Himself out into thee as soon as ever He shall find thee ready.” As nature abhors a vacuum, so the Holy Spirit rushes in to fill the nature that has become empty by separating itself from the world and sin. This is not an unnatural act and need not be an unusual one, for it is in perfect accord with the nature of God. He must act as He does because He is God….

If only we would stop lamenting and look up. God is here. Christ is risen. The Spirit has been poured out from on high. All this we know as theological truth. It remains for us to turn it into joyous spiritual experience. And how is this accomplished? There is no new technique; if it is new it is false. The old, old method still works. Conscious fellowship with Christ is by faith, love and obedience. And the humblest believer need not be without these. TIC065-067

Lord, impart to me a fresh measure of faith, love and obedience, that I might know You as perfectly as possible. Amen. [3]


February 21

Are You Mourning as Christ Commands?

Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.—Matt. 5:4

Two crucial determinants will tell you if you are mourning over sin as Jesus commands. First, you will have true sensitivity to and sorrow for your sins. Your primary concern will be how your sin detracts from God’s glory, not how its exposure might embarrass you or hurt your reputation.

The mock piety of hypocrites demonstrates no sensitivity to sin, only to their personal prestige and pride (cf. Matt. 6:1–18). Likewise, the mock gratitude of those like the Pharisees who think they are better than others (cf. Luke 18:11) certainly does not show mourning for sin. King Saul twice admitted he had sinned when he did not destroy King Agag and all the Amalekites, and even asked Samuel for pardon, but he was more concerned for his own honor than God’s (1 Sam. 15:10–35).

If your mourning is godly, you will lament the sins of other believers and the world, as well as your own. You will agree with the psalmist, “My eyes shed streams of water, because they do not keep Your law” (Ps. 119:136). You will weep over your community, as Jesus did over His (Luke 19:41).

The second way to know if you are mourning rightly is to check your sense of God’s forgiveness. Have you experienced the sense of spiritual freedom and real release that comes with knowing your sins are forgiven? Can you point to true happiness, peace, and joy in your life that only God gives in response to mourning for sin (cf. Ps. 126:5–6)?

ASK YOURSELF
What is your main problem with sin—only that it gives you that sick feeling of guilt and hypocrisy? Only that it seems to expose you around those who know you best? Take all the personal inconveniences out of the equation, and be more gravely concerned that your sin offends the God you profess to serve.[4]

FEBRUARY 21

WE HAVE IT ALL

Seek ye first the kingdom…all these things shall be added unto you.

Matthew 6:33

 

How much time have you spent in your Christian life meditating on the plain instruction from our Savior?—“Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”

The God who has revealed Himself to needy men and women wants us to know that when we have Him, we have everything—we have all the rest!

Any of us who have experienced a life and ministry of faith can tell how the Lord has met our needs—even for food and the essentials of life.

Brethren, we ought to learn, and learn it soon, that it is much better to have God first and have God Himself, even if we have only a thin dime, than to have all the riches and all the influence in this world and not have God with it!

Let us go on to know Him and to love Him more dearly, not for His gifts and benefits, but for the pure joy of His presence. Thus we will fulfill the purpose for which He created us and redeemed us!

 

Dear Lord, help me make the transition from wanting more and more “things” to being satisfied—and overjoyed—with only Your presence in my life.[5]


February 21 Maintaining Spiritual Integrity

“… in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ” (Phil. 1:10).

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Seek to have a life that bears scrutiny.

In our society, those whose lives are marked by moral soundness, uprightness, honesty, and sincerity are usually thought of as people of integrity. However, society’s standards often fall far short of God’s. Spiritual integrity calls for the highest possible standard of behavior and requires supernatural resources available only to those who trust in Him.

Paul’s prayer in Philippians 1:9–10 outlines the path to spiritual integrity. It begins with “love” that abounds with “knowledge and all discernment” (v. 9) and progresses to the pursuit of excellence (v. 10). The result is sincerity and blamelessness—two characteristics of godly integrity.

The Greek word translated “sincere” in verse 10 speaks of genuineness and authenticity. It literally means “without wax” and is an allusion to the practice of inspecting pottery by holding it up to the sunlight. In ancient times pottery often cracked during the firing process. Rather than discarding cracked pieces, dishonest dealers often filled the cracks with wax and sold them to unsuspecting customers. Holding a pot up to the sunlight revealed any flaws and protected the customer from a bad purchase.

Following that analogy, Biblical integrity requires that you be without wax, having no hypocrisy or secret sins that show up when you’re under pressure or facing temptation.

“Blameless” speaks of consistency in living a life that doesn’t lead others into error or sin. Your standard is to be the same away from church as it is at church.

Being blameless isn’t easy in a world that unashamedly flaunts its sinful practices. You must guard against losing your sensitivity to the heinousness of sin and unwittingly beginning to tolerate or even accept the sin that once shocked you. That’s when you lose integrity and begin to cause others to stumble.

Diligently pursue integrity with a view toward glorifying Christ in all things until He returns!

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Suggestions for Prayer:  Thank God that He is “able to keep you from stumbling and to make you stand in His presence . . . blameless with great joy” (Jude 24). ✧ Prayerfully guard your heart and mind from the subtle evil influences that can erode your integrity and make you ineffective for the Lord.

For Further Study: Read Genesis 39. ✧ How was Joseph’s integrity challenged? ✧ How did God honor Joseph’s commitment to godly integrity?[6]


FEBRUARY 21

“CREATE IN ME A CLEAN HEART, O GOD”

Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

JOHN 3:3

The miracle of the new birth was foreshadowed in the Old Testament record: “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.”

There was at least a hint of miracle within the human breast—not the reasoning of yourself into a position, but something happening that could not be explained! Coming into the New Testament, there is no longer any hinting or suggesting about the miracle of the new birth—it is boldly and openly declared. Our Saviour said that if we come to Him and are not born again, we cannot enter the kingdom of God—that we must be born from above.

Paul told the Corinthians: “If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”

You couldn’t make it any stronger than that! Something happens in a man’s nature that no man can explain!

Just the moment that a man’s experience in Christ can be broken down and explained by the psychologists, we have a church member on our hands—and not a Christian! For that which must happen in the new birth can never be explained by psychology or psychiatry. The professional can only stand off respectfully and say, “Behold the works of the Lord.” He can never explain it! And in that great and terrible day to come, many will be shocked when they find that they depended upon a mental assent to Christianity instead of upon the miracle of the new birth![7]


[1] MacArthur, J. (2001). Truth for today : a daily touch of God’s grace (p. 64). Nashville, Tenn.: J. Countryman.

[2] MacArthur, J. (1997). Strength for today. Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

[3] Tozer, A. W., & Eggert, R. (2015). Tozer on the almighty god: a 365-day devotional. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

[4] MacArthur, J. (2008). Daily readings from the life of Christ (p. 60). Chicago: Moody Publishers.

[5] Tozer, A. W. (2015). Mornings with tozer: daily devotional readings. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

[6] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1993). Drawing Near—Daily Readings for a Deeper Faith (p. 64). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

[7] Tozer, A. W., & Smith, G. B. (2015). Evenings with tozer: daily devotional readings. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

Unpopular the Movie is devastating in a good way, as the Gospel always is (Video)

Red Grace media has published Unpopular The Movie, and it’s wonderful. This half hour movie is Christ-centric, accurate, clear, and presents the Gospel in a devastatingly biblical way. When you hear/read the Gospel, unvarnished and with open ears and open eyes, it singes the heart and devastates the soul. It is incendiary. Even as a long-saved person, it will try your emotions, and bring you low. We ALL need The Gospel.

Here, Emilio Ramos, Dr James White, and Paul Washer quietly discuss The Gospel. The background music is unobtrusive, the setting is thoughtful, and the presentation of the Gospel is accurate and beautiful. The movie is as much for the saints as it is an evangelism tool for the unsaved. Here is Red Grace Media’s synopsis:Unpopular The Movie is a Evangelism resource for the church. Unpopular is a gospel presentation by Emilio Ramos, Dr James White of Aomin.org, and Paul Washer from Heart Cry Missionary Society. Unpopular is meant to serve as a tool to evangelize non-Christians with the gospel of Jesus Christ. To stay up to date visit http://www.unpopularthemovie.com

Mr Ramos said,

We live in a culture that glorifies sin. That trivializes sin, that makes sin less heinous than it is. It is very deceptive to look at sin in a way that makes sense to us. If we see ourselves in the way that the culture tells us to see ourselves, then man can remedy his condition through technique. But if we see ourselves the way the Bible tells us we really are, then the only remedy for our sin is the work of the Savior.

This is good. Watch it!

Sin, repentance, the cross…are the most upsetting and controversial doctrines on the entire earth. They are presented here, along with God’s love and mercy.

Listen and watch for yourself. We all need the Gospel, all the time. Let its truth and the majesty of a holy and righteous God who accepts sinners into His family through His slain and resurrected Son, Jesus. Then share.

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Further Reading

The Gospel According to Jesus, by John MacArthur

Source: Unpopular the Movie is devastating in a good way, as the Gospel always is