Daily Archives: April 10, 2014

GodLife: How Can We Have Joy in Trials?

How can We Have Joy in Trials?

Why does God allow trials in our life? They help build our faith and dependence on God. The Bible says our faith is like gold that needs to be purified and refined in fire. The joy comes when we realize the fire makes the end product more valuable and beautiful.

Just for You

Do you know how to have joy in your trials? Click to learn more about focusing on joy in the Life Lessons series.

Personal Help

Do you understand how suffering builds our faith? We have trained followers of Jesus who can help you figure it out! Click here to share your story with us. You will hear from someone shortly.

Prayer Points

Will you pray this week:
• That God will show you when you love this world too much
• For God to help you focus on things that matter to Him
• That God will remind you of His eternal promises
• For help in bringing glory and praise to God in the midst of suffering
• That you will have an opportunity to share the hope of Eternal Life through Jesus with someone

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Where can you go online to get daily encouragement and inspiration, and to discuss having joy in trials? Visit the GodLife Facebook Page where we can gather daily to share our stories, to express ourselves, and to pray for one another!

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GTY Blog: Discerning Judgment – John MacArthur

 

Last time we discussed the necessity of discerning leadership in the church. But exercising discernment is not only the duty of pastors and elders. The same careful discernment Paul demanded of church leadership is also required of every Christian. The exhortation in 1 Thessalonians 5:21 to “examine everything carefully” is written to the entire church.

The Greek text is by no means complex. The word “carefully” has been added by the translators to make the sense clear. If we translate the phrase literally, we find it simply says, “Examine everything.” But the idea conveyed by our word carefully is included in the Greek word translated “examine,” dokimazō. This is a familiar word in the New Testament. Elsewhere it is translated “analyze,” “test,” or “prove.” It refers to the process of testing something to reveal its genuineness, such as in the testing of precious metals. Paul is urging believers to scrutinize everything they hear to determine if it is genuine, to distinguish between the true and the false, to separate the good from the evil. In other words, he wants them to examine everything critically. “Test everything,” he is saying. “Judge everything.”

But wait just a minute. What about Matthew 7:1: “Do not judge so that you will not be judged”? Typically someone will quote that verse and suggest that it rules out any kind of critical or analytical appraisal of what others believe. Was Jesus forbidding Christians from judging what is taught in His name?

Obviously not. The spiritual discernment Paul calls for is different from the judgmental attitude Jesus forbade. In Matthew chapter 7, Jesus went on to say:

In the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, “Let me take the speck out of your eye,” and behold, the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye (Matthew 7:2–5).

Obviously, what Jesus condemned was the hypocritical judgment of those who held others to a higher standard than they themselves were willing to live by. He was certainly not suggesting that all judgment is forbidden. In fact, Jesus indicated that taking a speck out of your brother’s eye is the right thing to do—as long as you first get the log out of your own eye.

Elsewhere in Scripture we are forbidden to judge others’ motives or attitudes. We are not “able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart” (Hebrews 4:12). That is a divine prerogative. Only God can judge the heart, because only God can see it (1 Samuel 16:7). He alone knows the secrets of the heart (Psalm 44:21). He alone can weigh the motives (Proverbs 16:2). And He alone “will judge the secrets of men through Christ Jesus” (Romans 2:16). That is not our role. “Therefore do not go on passing judgment before the time, but wait until the Lord comes who will both bring to light the things hidden in the darkness and disclose the motives of men’s hearts” (1 Corinthians 4:5).

What Scripture forbids is hypocritical judging and judging others’ thoughts and motives. But other forms of judgment are explicitly commanded. Throughout Scripture the people of God are urged to judge between truth and error, right and wrong, good and evil. Jesus said, “Judge with righteous judgment” (John 7:24). Paul wrote to the Corinthian believers, “I speak as to wise men; you judge what I say” (1 Corinthians 10:15). Clearly, God requires us to be discriminating when it comes to matters of sound doctrine.

As we shall see next time, our discerning judgment is also an essential part of addressing sin within the church.

 

(Adapted from Reckless Faith.)


Available online at: http://www.gty.org/resources/Blog/B140410
COPYRIGHT ©2014 Grace to You

New poll finds 62% don’t trust President Obama to stop Iran from building nuclear weapons.

Joel C. Rosenberg's Blog

MEME-obama-Iran ( Washington, D.C.)  — As the Obama administration continues making a series of missteps in foreign policy, Americans are losing confidence in their Commander in Chief.

From Russia’s invasion of Ukraine to Syria’s use of chemical weapons to the Benghazi situation in Libya and the near-breakdown of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, Americans do not see the White House and State Department  providing strong, steady, principled, bipartisan leadership. Rather, they see confusion, weakness, and vacillation.

Now a new poll finds that a significant majority of Americans are anxious that the President cannot be trusted stop Iran from building nuclear weapons, one of the most important national security issues facing the U.S., Israel and our Arab allies.

As we geared up for the release of The Auschwitz Escape, my publisher, Tyndale House, and I commissioned a national survey to help us better understand how Americans view the current geopolitical issues in light of the history of the Holocaust. 

Working with McLaughlin &…

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100 Facts About The Moral Collapse Of America That Are Almost Too Crazy To Believe

The collection of facts and statistics that you are about to read is highly controversial. A lot of people are going to be greatly upset by it. Why? Because they don’t like to be confronted with the truth about America. Most people tend to believe that we can “fix this country” by getting the right politicians into power or by implementing certain economic or social reforms. But the reality of the matter is that our problems go far deeper than that. A moral collapse is eating away at the foundations of our society like cancer. If it continues to go unchecked, it will inevitably destroy America. Unfortunately, fixing moral decay is far more difficult than switching out political parties, because it is in the hearts of hundreds of millions of individual Americans. And most people don’t want to hear anything about a “moral collapse”, because most people like to think that the United States is setting a “good example” for the rest of the planet. But as you will see below, that is not the case at all.

And if we are honest with ourselves, we see the evidence of this (Read More…)

Why Meat Prices Are Going To Continue Soaring For The Foreseeable Future

The average price of USDA choice-grade beef has soared to $5.28 a pound, and the average price of a pound of bacon has skyrocketed to $5.46. Unfortunately for those that like to eat meat, this is just the beginning of the price increases. Due to an absolutely crippling drought that won’t let go of the western half of the country, the total size of the U.S. cattle herd has shrunk for seven years in a row, and it is now the smallest that is has been since 1951. But back in 1951, we had less than half the number of mouths to feed. And a devastating pig virus that has never been seen in the United States before has already killed up to 6 million pigs in this country and continues to spread like wildfire. What all of this means is that the supply of meat is going to be tight for the foreseeable future even as demand for meat continues to go up. This is going to result in much higher prices, and so food is going to put a much larger dent in American family budgets in the months and years to come. (Read More…..)

US Households To Withdraw $430 Billion From Stocks In 2014 – Most Since Last Bubble

As an aside we disagree from this simplistic analysis because as is well known, the “Household” category, which is pulled from the Fed’s quarterly Flow of Funds report, is merely a placeholder plug, designed to balance out all the other member categories. What is less known is that entities such as hedge funds use extensive “off the books” leverage (just ask Citadel and its nearly 9x regulatory leverage) to hold far more equities than their capital allows them. Which means that in reality the US household owns far less stock than is believed.
But even if one takes the Fed’s data at face value, what becomes clear is that having owned virtually the entire stock market in 1945, households are now down to nearly their lowest fractional ownership in history, with the rest alloted to mutual, pension and retirement funds.

And it is only going to get worse.

According to a recent analysis by Goldman, in 2014 the US household is on track to withdraw a whopping $430 billion from US corporate stocks. i.e., sell. This will be the biggest net outflow by the Household group, which has constantly withdrawn cash from equities over the past decade, since the last market peak.

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Report: Jesus More Popular on China’s Twitter Than Chairman Mao

Chinese censors are allowing more Christian terminology to be talked about on Weibo, China’s version of Twitter. A study last week revealed:
– “Jesus,” received more than 18 million mentions while Chinese President Xi Jinping received 4 million mentions.
– “Bible” receuved 17 million mentions while Quotations From Chairman Mao Tse-tung’s “The Little Red Book,” received fewer than 60,000.
– “Christian congregation” was mentioned more than 41 million times, while “Communist Party” yielded just 5.3 million mentions.
China’s 100,000 censors, evidently coninued to ban the term “underground church.”
Source: NewsMax

Monergism Synergism and Limited Atonement

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Now on the tenth day of this seventh month is the Day of Atonement. It shall be for you a time of holy convocation, and you shall afflict yourselves and present a food offering to the LORD. And you shall not do any work on that very day, for it is a Day of Atonement, to make atonement for you before the LORD your God. For whoever is not afflicted on that very day shall be cut off from his people. And whoever does any work on that very day, that person I will destroy from among his people. You shall not do any work. It is a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwelling places. It shall be to you a Sabbath of solemn rest, and you shall afflict yourselves. On the ninth day of the month…

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