Daily Archives: October 22, 2013

New Post: Church, We Have A Problem

love_and_rockets-ball_of_confusion-300x300In response to my Washington Post op-ed last Thursday, one commenter wrote: “Moralism in the church was a huge problem 7-10 years ago, but I honestly feel that the pendulum has swung in the other extreme full force, to a fault on the other side.” This is a pretty common objection that those of us who are committed to decrying moralism and legalism hear. The thinking goes precisely the way the commenter suggests: “Legalism and moralism is NOT the problem today; licentiousness is.”

On the surface, this seems to make a lot of sense. Just look around. One could argue that our country has never been more licentious and morally lax than it is now. Is preaching the gospel of grace what we really need? Or, to put it another way, is preaching the gospel of grace really the means by which God rescues the lawless, the unethical, and the disobedient? There are at least three huge assumptions in this common line of thinking that need to be addressed.

New Post: As the Smoke Clears: A Few Afterthoughts on the Strange Fire Conference

It’s been encouraging to see many in the family of faith offering up wisdom for consideration in the wake of the Strange Fire conference. Helpful angles on the conference have been brought from, among others, Clint Archer, Tim Challies, and Trevin Wax. Instead of elaborating on their work, I’ll offer a few afterthoughts for consideration of this impactful event:

Read More Here: http://thecripplegate.com/as-the-smoke-clears-a-few-afterthoughts-on-the-strange-fire-conference/

Fifth earthquake in 5 days hits Israel. Bible warns of catastrophic earthquakes in Israel in the “last days.”

Joel C. Rosenberg's Blog

Every 80 years or so, Israel has a major, catastrophic earthquake. So Israelis know they are “due” for a “big one.”

Those who pay attention to Bible prophecy also know that both the Old and New Testament Scriptures describe major earthquakes occurring in Israel in the last days.

Earthquake preparations are on the increase by government agencies and among private companies and such preparations will now accelerate, especially in the wake of five minor earthquakes in Israel in the course of the past five days. Among the steps being taken: a new earthquake alert system is being developed by the government and is expected to be ready in 2016.

“Israel’s last major earthquake rattled the region in 1927” reports the Times of Israel, was “a 6.2-magnitude tremor that killed 500 and injured another 700.” Before that, “an earthquake in 1837 left as many as 5,000 people dead.”

“A small earthquake shook…

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October Links Related to Strange Fire and the Charismatic

The Domain for Truth

Strange fire

Here are some great links that I encourage you to read if you want to know more  in order to sharpen your discernment in the area of the Charismatic.

1) Here is an open letter to Mark Driscoll by a seminary librarian who I know and have made various conversations with.  This is an excellent post clarifying the Mark Driscoll arrival at Strange Fire Conference: Open Letter to Mark Driscoll

2) Here is a great post by a brother concerning the charismatic chaos in Africa: Strange Fire – The African Import of Charismatic Chaos – Conrad Mbewe

3) Here is a video of an individual who reveals a major flaw by implying that cessationism has a deficient Gospel.  But how does Cessationism impact soteriology?  Sovereign Grace, Spiritual Gifts, and the Pastor: How Should a Reformed Pastor Be Charismatic?

4) Great summaries concerning the messages at Strange Fire by Tim…

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Random Thoughts in the Aftermath of Strange Fire

Watch Your Life and Doctrine Closely...

So the internet  pretty much looks like this right now:

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Strange Fire talk is everywhere.

With all the rebuttals, responses and defenses being tossed out from everyone and their intern, I don’t even know where to start in addressing a tiny fraction of the stuff that’s being said.

Here’s an article by Trevin Wax on how to go about debating the conference.

Here’s a sliver of the rebuttals/attacks:

1.  C Michael Patton over at Parchment and Pen (and also Credo House Ministries) has declared that MacArthur is losing his voice among Evangelicals, and has also informed the whole world what someone who’s never been part of the charismatic movement thinks a Charismatic is.  Michael Patton’s fellow team blogger Clint Roberts has tossed out some thoughts on lessons to learn from the Strange Firestorm.

2.  Sam Storms has been on full alert.  He’s tossed up an alert that

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Another One Trillion Dollars (1,000,000,000,000) In Debt

Did you know that the U.S. national debt has increased by more than a trillion dollars in just over 12 months? On September 30th, 2012 the U.S. national debt was sitting at $16,066,241,407,385.89. Today, it is up to $17,075,590,107,963.57. These numbers come directly from official U.S. government websites and can easily be verified. For a long time the national debt was stuck at just less than 16.7 trillion dollars because of the debt ceiling fight, but now that the debt ceiling crisis has been delayed for a few months the national debt is soaring once again. In fact, just one day after the deal in Congress was reached, the U.S. national debt rose by an astounding 328 billion dollars. In the blink of an eye we shattered the 17 trillion dollar mark with no end in sight. We are stealing about $100,000,000 from our children and our grandchildren every single hour of every single day. This goes on 24 hours a day, month after month, year after year without any interruption. (Read More….)

Uh Oh: 47 Million Food Stamp Recipients Are Having Their Benefits Cut Back On November 1st

47.6 million Americans are about to have their food stamp benefits cut, and most of them have absolutely no idea that it is about to happen. Needless to say, a lot of them are going to be very angry when they discover that they cannot buy as much food for their families anymore. The reason that this is happening is because a temporary boost to food stamp benefits that was put in during the last recession is expiring. But most of the people that are having their benefits cut will not understand this. Most of them will just be very upset that the government is “taking money away” from them. And considering the “mini-riots” that we witnessed earlier this month when the system that processes food stamp payments went down for a few hours, it is obvious that a lot of food stamp recipients can very easily be pushed over the edge. So what would happen if we have another “debt ceiling crisis” in Washington D.C. early next year and food stamp benefits are temporarily cut off completely? (Read More…..)

New Article: Billy Graham sounds alarm for 2nd Coming

Just as Noah did in ancient times, world-renowned evangelist Billy Graham is sounding the alarm that the Second Coming is “near” and signs of the end of the age are “converging now for the first time since Jesus made those predictions.” Earlier this month, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the United Nations General Assembly “biblical prophecies are being realized.” “God keeps his promises, and this is why we can be sure that the return of Christ is near,” Graham said. “Scripture tells us that there will be signs pointing toward the return of the Lord. I believe all these signs are evident today.”

Read More Here

John MacArthur Responds to Critics Who Believe His Strange Fire Conference Is Divisive, Unloving

The Rev. John MacArthur, influential author, pastor and seminary president, responded to critics of the three-day Strange Fire conference at his Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, Calif., that many pastors believe is causing dissention among the faithful because he’s teaching that the Charismatic movement is leading people astray and dishonors the Holy Spirit.

MacArthur commented that some of his critics have said that he’s fixated on the Charismatic movement, a claim he countered by noting that in his 45 years in ministry, this was his first conference he’s held on the movement, and believes it has come too late.

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Albert Mohler Blog: “A Clear and Present Danger: Religious Liberty, Marriage, and the Family in the Late Modern Age—An Address at BYU”

For his latest Blog Essay, Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr. provides the transcript of his recent address at Brigham Young University, “A Clear and Present Danger: Religious Liberty, Marriage, and the Family in the Late Modern Age.”

In this address, Dr. Mohler traces the current revolution regarding marriage, family, and human sexuality to the prior intellectual and moral turn away from Christian theism and morality. The church did not address this confusion with sufficient moral clarity and credibility. And now the scale and velocity of this sexual revolution defies exaggeration, even as it pushes into religious liberty. With intellectual credibility that does not sacrifice gospel clarity, Dr. Mohler calls on all who love marriage, family, and human flourishing to stand together and push back in defense of these gifts to human society.

Go to the full essay to read why Dr. Mohler told his Mormon hosts and audience, “I do not believe that we are going to heaven together, but I do believe we may go to jail together.”

Video: The roots and bad fruit of the Contemplative Spirituality “Centering-Prayer” movement

By Chris Lawson (Spiritual Research Network)

Note from Chris Lawson: These videos (links below) briefly   express years of my own research observations about the influences and dangers   of mystical (and occult) based literature and teachings being embraced by many   popular Christian leaders and authors today.

My purpose in making this video is to show firsthand – with books from our   SRN research library – some of the deeply problematic roots and bad fruit of the   Contemplative Spirituality “Centering-Prayer” movement. Click here for source of this video.

News in Review with Understand the Times and Update on Rick Warren’s New Book – Also New Global P.E.A.C.E. Plan in 12 Strategic Cities

Source: http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/newsletters/2013/newsletters20131021.htm#2

LTRP Note: Worth noting, Rick Warren is coming out with a   new book, The Daniel Plan, on December 3rd. He is co-authoring the book   with two of the Daniel Plan New Age advocates, Dr. Daniel Amen and Dr. Mark   Hyman (see our related articles below UTT’s headlines for this week).

 

Weekly News in Review with Understand the Times,   International

Related Articles on the Purpose Driven Movement:

 Rick   Warren’s Daniel Plan – The New Age/Eastern Meditation Doctors Behind the   Saddleback Health by Warren B. Smith

SPECIAL REPORT: RICK WARREN RETAINS UNBIBLICAL POSITION IN NEW 2012   EDITION OF THE PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE

[New post] “As We Also Have Forgiven Our Debtors:” The Power and Necessity of Forgiveness

We’ve all been there: someone makes a rude comment to or about us; we are treated unfairly; we are abused, dismissed, or made the target. On some level, we all know how it feels to be mistreated and to suffer injustice. At first, the feelings we experience are surprise and shock, but if left to fester, they eventually evolve into anger, bitterness, and resentment. Such feelings can and will harden our hearts if left unchecked, or worse, if we periodically stir them up again and renew their hold on us.

I’ve learned the hard way that it’s often easier to be consumed by anger than it is to forgive an offender and choose to love them. It’s easier to remind myself of the injustice, feel sorry for myself, and wallow in my own bitterness and self-pity. But if we let ourselves get to this point, the reality is that we are the only ones to blame for our continual suffering.

Read More Here

All Genuine Christians Are Called to Undergo the Test of Patient Endurance

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

14 And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.  (1 Thessalonians 5:14 ESV)

I totally agree with Dr. John MacArthur’s assessment of the spiritual status of the United States of America in which he stated that we are in the process of being abandoned by God. Why is God doing this? Our leaders, which include those in all levels of the government as well as religious leaders have, for the most part abandoned God. They have turned away from a Christian Worldview and have pursued a secular, humanistic Worldview in its place. As we read in Romans 1:18-32, God gives people over to their false gods. This, in turn, causes deep spiritual blindness that only God can take away. As a result of a nation being given over like this this causes those who do hold…

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