Globalization is “the act extending an influence to all parts of the world.” It involves the emergence of a single world market or deregulation resulting in internationalization. At first blush, globalization doesn’t seem all that bad. Globalization seems to hold an answer to the world’s financial troubles, among other things. However, prayerful consideration and research reveals disturbing historical precedence.
The historical form of globalization is military conquest. The Assyrian Empire is an apt example. From the late 25th or early 24th century BC to 605 BC, the Assyrians controlled vast swaths of Babylonia, Egypt and the Holy Land. While technologically advanced for their time, the Assyrians were also brutal warriors who murdered, tortured and enslaved their enemies. The Assyrians were globalists in that they were bent on world conquest. God used the Assyrians to punish and exile the ten northern tribes of Israel for the wicked things Israel did to provoke the Lord to anger (2 Kings 17).
Probably the most well-known example of historical globalization is the attempted construction of the Tower of Babel in the 21st century BC. Rather than filling the earth as God commanded (Genesis 9:1), mankind rebelled, deciding to centralize in one city and not be scattered over the earth (Genesis 11:4). This construction effort was spearheaded by Noah’s great-grandson, King Nimrod (whose name means “rebel”). God, in response, confused their languages, thus forcing the people to group together by dialect and settle elsewhere (Genesis 11:8–9).
All the empires presented in a dream to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylonia represent other attempts to institute one-world government (Daniel 2). Daniel’s prophetic interpretation of the king’s dream is summarized our article, What is the meaning of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream in Daniel 2? It is notable that Nebuchadnezzar envisioned a fifth and final world empire, which is yet to come.
This final empire will be a true global government, ruled by the man known as the Antichrist, also called the beast and the lawless one (Revelation 13:4; 2 Thessalonians 2:8). He will have “authority over every tribe, people, language and nation,” and he, along with the False Prophet, will force all people to take his mark. This future global leader will control all financial transactions (Revelation 13:17) and all religious observance (Revelation 13:8). Refusal to worship the Antichrist means death; acquiescence means eternal punishment from God (Revelation 13:15; 14:9–11).
The Bible, therefore, shows that any time man attempts “globalization” it is ruled by wicked, ungodly empires. We should oppose globalization to the extent that we understand that it is implemented by Satan, currently the god of this age (2 Corinthians 4:4). It is interesting to note that man’s (and Satan’s) final attempt at globalization will include a resurgence of “Babylon,” which started the globalization effort so long ago (see Revelation 18).
Of course, we also know that the “whole world is a prisoner of sin” (Galatians 3:22) and that believers are to “hate evil” (Psalm 97:10). We must shine the light of righteousness into the darkness where we find it, via the gospel message (Matthew 5:16; cf. John 8:12). It is appropriate to rebuke wickedness, and there is much of that to be found in Satan’s version of globalization. However, 1 Peter 2:13 does tell us to “submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every authority instituted among men,” and Jesus Himself warned us to “give to Caesar what is Caesar’s” (Matthew 22:21), so it is required that we keep our opposition within the constraints of the law of the land.
God has a plan for globalization under the headship of the King and Redeemer, Jesus Christ (see Revelation 19–20). Evidently, there will still be individual nations under Christ’s rule (Zechariah 2:10–11). The Kingdom will be a time of righteousness and true justice (Isaiah 11:3–5).
How peaceful and joyful the days of Christ’s Kingdom will be! Isaiah 12:3–4 describes for us, “With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation. In that day you will say: ‘Give thanks to the Lord, call on his name; make known among the nations what he has done, and proclaim that his name is exalted.’ ”
 Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.
Because the thought of death can be frightening, people through the years have invented some platitudes with which to comfort themselves. When someone dies, we often hear unbiblical statements such as “She’s an angel now” and “God needed another angel in heaven”; sometimes, we hear the bromide “He’s in a better place,” spoken with no thought that he might actually be in a worse place. People who never have time for God suddenly grow religious at a funeral. They try to assure themselves and others that, regardless of the deceased’s relationship with God while on earth, he or she is in heaven now. But we must not ignore what Scripture teaches.
The phrase “rest in peace,” often abbreviated “R.I.P.,” comes from the Latin blessing requiescat in pace (literally, “may he begin to rest in peace”). Is it biblical to say, “Rest in peace”? It depends.
The Bible is clear that physical death is not the end (Hebrews 9:27; John 3:16–18). Jesus taught that there are two options for every human being: heaven or hell (Matthew 10:28; 25:46; Mark 9:43;). He gave a vivid illustration of those options in the story of the rich man and Lazarus, found in Luke 16:19–31. In this account, Jesus demonstrated that the rich man, who had given no thought of God during his earthly life, went to hell when he died. Lazarus, who possessed nothing on earth but a pure heart, was taken to paradise. Hell is described as a place of torment (verse 23), not a place of rest. According to Scripture, a person who dies without Christ is not “resting in peace” (see John 3:18). “ ‘There is no peace,’ says my God, ‘for the wicked’ ” (Isaiah 57:21).
However, death is entirely different for those who are “in Christ” (Romans 8:1; 1 Corinthians 1:30). First Thessalonians 4:13 reminds us that, while it is natural to grieve for loved ones who have died, we do not need to grieve for believers in Christ as though we will never see them again. There is hope mixed with the sorrow. The Bible often refers to the dead in Christ as “those who are asleep” (1 Corinthians 15:20; Acts 13:36; 1 Thessalonians 5:10). The biblical writers used sleep as a metaphor because death for a Christian is only temporary. Paul said that “to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord” (2 Corinthians 5:8). According to the Bible, those receive Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior are with Him in paradise when they die (Luke 23:43). So, to say “rest in peace” about a Christian is biblical.
We must keep in mind that only God knows the heart of every person. Only God knows whether a person in his or her last moments cried out to Jesus for forgiveness, as did the thief on the cross (Luke 23:43). It has been said that one of the best gifts we can give our loved ones is to let them know by our lives and our lips where we will be spending eternity. Death can be considered merely a “change of address” for those who love Jesus, with a major upgrade in living conditions! About God’s children we can say with confidence, “Rest in peace.”
 Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.
Jews for Jesus is a ministry organization based in San Francisco, California, with the stated purpose of making “the messiahship of Jesus an unavoidable issue to our Jewish people.” Jews for Jesus grew out of the turbulent hippie movement in the 1960s in San Francisco. The organization practices truth in advertising by making sure that those people on the front lines of ministry and evangelism are, indeed, Jews who are also “for Jesus.” Jews for Jesus is a non-denominational, independent mission relying on individual and church donations for funding.
Jews for Jesus was founded by Moishe Rosen, born in 1932 in Kansas City, Missouri, as Martin Meyer Rosen. He was given the Hebrew name “Moishe” at his circumcision, and he was reared in a nominally religious Jewish family. When his wife, Ceil, came to know Jesus as her Messiah and Savior, Moishe was convinced that he would be able to prove that Jesus was not the Messiah. He began to study the facts concerning Jesus, and his research became the very way in which he, too, became a believer in Jesus the Messiah. His zeal for the Lord Messiah led him to study at Northeastern Bible College in New Jersey. He then became affiliated with American Board of Missions to the Jews (ABMJ), now known as The Chosen People Ministries. Moishe soon began to reach out to the Jewish hippies and counterculture in New York City and later in San Francisco.
Jews for Jesus uses unique methods in reaching the Jewish population. Rosen developed the concept of the “broadside,” which is similar to a gospel tract but uses a folded, standard-size sheet of paper with humorous quips and eye-catching graphics to communicate the message of the gospel. Evangelists with Jews for Jesus frequently employ music and street theatre to attract people with whom they can share the message of Jesus. The organization gears up for local city campaigns with targeted broadsides and other media outreach. They seem to thrive on fresh ideas and new approaches to sharing the gospel message.
It is also helpful to know what Jews for Jesus does not stand for or practice. They do not live communally. However, because of their unique ministry and the opposition they face from both Jews and non-Jews, they tend to be tight-knit and closely resemble a family. They are not a cult. Members, employees and volunteers choose their own housing, make their own decisions, manage their own finances, raise their own children and are strongly encouraged by the organization to maintain close family ties. They are not hippies. This ministry got its start in the shadow of the counterculture, but they are not against traditional values. They are not in competition with other ministries that reach out to Jewish people. They consider other organizations and individuals as co-laborers for Jesus the Messiah.
Jews for Jesus maintains as a core conviction that a Jewish person does not lose his Jewish identity when he becomes a believer in Jesus the Messiah. Jews for Jesus believes in one God in three Persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. They believe that the Bible, both Old and New Testaments, is the inspired Word of God. They believe that salvation for both Jew and Gentile is through the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus the Messiah. They believe that Jesus of Nazareth is the prophesied Messiah. They believe that Jesus is co-equal with the Father and that He is both fully God and fully human. They believe that the Jewish people are in a covenant relationship with God and that God will accomplish His purpose through them. They also believe that the Church is under the New Covenant and composed of both Jewish and Gentile believers. In other words, their beliefs reflect historic Christian orthodoxy. Their heart’s desire is to share the gospel with their Jewish family, neighbors and friends.
 Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.
If you want to hear about really sick churches, then stick with me on this post. If you are tired about many of us writing about the sordid state of congregations, I understand. Skip this article and I will return with more good news in the near future.
So what is a dysfunctional church? By definition, it is a congregation that no longer carries out essential biblical purposes. In other words, the church does not function properly; it is thus dysfunctional.
Unfortunately, I did not have to look far to find over 20 current examples of dysfunctional churches. In my quest, I found six recurring themes. In every one of the congregations, the church manifested at least three of these symptoms.
A British Christian organization called Christian Heritage over at Cambridge has featured an event back in May 15th, 2014 celebrating the life of Francis Schaeffer on the 30th Anniversary of Francis Schaeffer’s death.
Here’s a description of the event from the event page:
The 15th May was the 30th anniversary of Francis Schaeffer’s death. To many he was unquestionably one of the twentieth century’s most outstanding evangelical leaders. His influence throughout the church was vast. Had he not ‘buried’ himself in a small mountain village in Switzerland to start a little-known work called L’Abri Fellowship, committed to prayer rather than ‘advertising’, perhaps more would know his name. Was he a prophet? Did his extraordinary authority arise from a quite unique biblical analysis of our culture? Were his warnings and pleas not exactly what were needed? But was he – for that very reason – not also an uncomfortable prophet? Did…
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From the Websites we find of interest (for whatever reason).
Links are given as is, without endorsement, sometimes with comment; sometimes not. Independent thought is usually rewarded, though not always.
July 2, 2014
U.S. Concerned ISIL & Al-Qaeda Planning Attack By Aircraft, False Flag Alert! – Oh, there will be an attack–and you can be sure that ISIL will be blamed for it. Will it make any difference? Likely not.
Dog Days of Summer… – It’s almost that time again. Wonder if the weather people will scream “It’s hotter than the surface of the Mars!” every time the thermometer hits 90?
Lectures Download: Celebrating Francis Schaeffer 30 years Anniversary – In this imperfect life that we live, we do not…
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by John MacArthur
What does saving faith look like? Does it produce a life marked by increasing righteousness, holiness, and good fruit? Or is salvation a momentary event that has no lasting impact in the life of a Christian?
We’ve been considering those and other important questions in the face of popular theological trends that drive a wedge between salvation and sanctification. The heart of the issue is determining the biblical marks of authentic faith—how does a saved person live his or her life? To that end, we’ve focused our thoughts on the book of 1 John—specifically 1 John 3:4-10.
Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness. You know that He appeared in order to take away sins; and in Him there is no sin. No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has seen Him or knows Him. Little children, make sure no one deceives you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil. No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious: anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother.
Right away, some key statements jump out at us. The first is found in verse 6, where the apostle John writes that “no one who abides in Him sins.” This theme echoes throughout the passage, and John expands on it in verse 9 with the words “because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin.” At face value, it appears John is saying that sin is impossible for believers.
Those are astounding statements, especially considering 1 John 1:8. There he writes, “If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us.” And again in verse 10, he writes, “If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us.” In the short space of a couple chapters, John makes what seem to be very contradictory statements about the existence of sin in a believer’s life.
There have been several theological attempts to harmonize John’s apparent contradiction. Some make the case that the sin John refers to in chapter 3 is only mortal sin. In fact, that’s the view of the Catholic Church, which differentiates between venial (forgivable) and mortal sins. But that’s a false, unbiblical dichotomy. All sin carries with it the same consequences (Romans 6:23).
Others argue that John is only referring to willful, deliberate sin. The idea is that Christians don’t actively commit sin; they merely suffer it. But the New Testament never depicts believers as helpless victims of iniquity. On the contrary, it teaches that believers sin because they choose to yield to temptation (James 1:14-15).
At one extreme end of the discussion, perfectionists would assert that believers can gradually overcome sin until they become completely sinless. In that system, the Christian lives in a constant struggle with sin, regularly losing and gaining ground against its influence, until he eventually reaches sinless perfection or loses his salvation altogether.
At the opposite end of the debate you’ll find the antinomian view. The term antinomian comes from the Greek word for law (nomos), and it refers to people who live without regard for the law of God. Antinomians believe that sin in the life of the believer simply doesn’t matter, since every aspect of his or her life is covered by grace. That corrupt view—which Paul taught against in Romans 6:12-18—is still popular today.
Modern proponents of cheap grace and easy-believism have their own means of explaining of John’s apparent contradiction. Some say the apostle was exhorting lawless, misbehaving Christians to rededicate their lives to the Lord and move from immature, carnal behavior to spirituality. With that interpretation, they attempt to tone down the letter and make it less definitive or harsh. But their arguments cannot account for John’s clear purpose for writing the letter—“These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life” (1 John 5:13). The dichotomy John presents is not mature faith versus immature faith, but rather a saving faith versus a non-saving one.
Still others miss the meaning and application of the passage due to a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of saving faith. They incorrectly believe that repentance is nothing more than a synonym for faith, and therefore does not refer to turning from sin. Turning from sin, they say, is unnecessary for salvation. Saving faith, then, is nothing more than mere intellectual assent to the facts of the gospel. Pleading with sinners to repent from sin is tantamount to asking them to contribute works to their own salvation. Hence, they accept that salvation may make no change at all in a person’s doctrine or behavior. Even a lifelong state of carnality is not sufficient reason to doubt someone’s salvation.
All those popular views and interpretations attempt to harmonize the apparent contradiction in 1 John. And not one of them gets it right.
The true key to understanding John’s apparent contradiction is Greek grammar. In the passage above, John refers to sin in the present tense, indicating continuous, habitual action. In other words, John is not referring to occasional acts of sin, but to established and continual patterns of sinful behavior. Believers will sometimes sin (Romans 7:14-25)—even willfully—but they will not and cannot sin habitually and persistently as a way of life (cf. Romans 6:4-14; Galatians 5:24; Ephesians 2:10).
When the Holy Spirit draws sinners to God, regenerates them, and grants them eternal life through faith in Jesus Christ, they are recreated (2 Corinthians 5:17). The nature of the new creature in Christ is to obey the Word, follow Christ, reject the temptations of the world, and display the fruits of righteousness in their lives (Romans 8:6; Philippians 3:9; Colossians 3:2). While the old nature is still present, there is a new desire, interest, and capacity to love and obey the Lord that wasn’t there before.
John’s apparent contradiction is no contradiction at all. In chapter one, he refutes false teachers who claim to have advanced beyond any struggle with sin (1 John 1:8-10). He goes on in chapter two to make it clear that if someone does not obey Christ’s commands (2:3) and live righteously (e.g., demonstrate love [2:9-10]), he is not a believer. In our passage from chapter three, the apostle reinforces the tests of faith he has already established. In doing so, he further refutes false teachers who minimize or deny the significance of sin. His teaching is just as vital today in the face of similar false teaching. Jesus sacrificed Himself not only to perfect people in the future, but to purify them in the present (Ephesians 5:25-27). Minimizing sin in the church goes against the very work of Christ.
In short, John’s point is that a lifestyle of sin is incompatible with true, saving faith. The life of the believer cannot be marked by patterns of unbroken, unrepentant sin. But John doesn’t leave us with that simple truth. He goes on in the passage to provide three reasons this reality is critical to understand.
We’ll look at the first one next time.
(Adapted from The MacArthur New Testament Commentary: 1-3 John.)
Available online at: http://www.gty.org/resources/Blog/B140617
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I don’t know how much I’ve driven in the twenty years since I got my license, but I do know it’s a lot, what with all those drives down to the South to visit my family. Here is one thing that has never varied across the hundreds of thousands of miles: When I take my foot off the pedal, the car does not speed up. It doesn’t even maintain the same speed. Instead, from the very moment I take my foot off the accelerator, the car begins to slow. Allowing the car to coast is inviting the car to stop. It may take some time, but left on its own, it will stop eventually. It is inevitable.
I’ve been thinking about this lately because I see in my own life a tendency to coast—to coast in my relationships, to coast in my pursuit of godliness, to coast in my pursuit of God himself. And here are some things I’ve observed:
The United Church of Christ (UCC) bills itself as “the church where God is still speaking.” Apparently, God’s Word is falling on deaf ears of the leadership. The UCC, which considers itself a mainline Protestant denomination—claiming over 1 million members and about 5,200 congregations in the U.S.—proudly announced it will serve as a major sponsor of the Gay Games. The UCC will now go down in Christian history as the first major denomination to sponsor the homosexual Olympics when the games roll into Cleveland, Ohio, in August. …….. Click here for full story
End Times Prophecy Report
July 2, 2014
FRANCE: French ex-leader Sarkozy charged with corruption – At least they charge their ex-leaders with corruption. In the USA, the taxpayers build a library for our ex-leaders.
CHINA: Hong Kong marchers demand democracy – If it suits the needs of the coming world government, they’ll get it.
IRAN: John Kerry: Time is running out Iran – Who knows? After being told “time is running out” for the last 12 years, Iran’s leaders may finally believe it this time.
RUSSIA: John Kerry told Russia it had hours to back off of Ukraine. That was 5 days ago – Part of the Corporate Media’s continuing coverage of the administration of President MomJeans.
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My sources say Americans should be very concerned about the secrecy of the government camps.
“There were several of us who wanted to talk about the camps, but the agents made it clear we would be arrested,” a psychiatric counselor told me. “We were under orders not to say anything.”
The Fed has long believed that money printing or credit creation equals growth. In an effort to prove this (and to prop up the insolvent big banks), the Fed has embarked on QE 1, QE 2, QE 3, QE 4, Operation Twist 1 and 2, and kept interest rates at zero for over five years. All told, the Fed has spent nearly $4 trillion. To put this number into perspective, it comes down to a little over $12,000 for every man woman and child in the US.
Recap and commentary for the pilot episode of HBO’s new post-Rapture show, ‘The Leftovers.’
This all happens in the first few minutes of the pilot episode, and afterward, we jump ahead three years. The families are left grieving and everyone wants answers, but nobody can provide them. And so a number of cults have sprung up: there’s the free-love hippies, of course, who will eat and drink and make merry till they die.
“It was the blood that was of infinite merit and value in the sight of God. It was not the blood of one who was nothing more than a singularly holy man, but of one Who was God’s own ‘Fellow,’ very God of very God (Zec. 13:7). It was not the blood of one who died involuntarily, as a martyr for truth, but of one Who voluntarily undertook to be the Substitute and Proxy for mankind, to bear their sins and carry their iniquities. It made atonement for man’s transgressions; it paid man’s enormous debt to God; it provided a way of righteous reconciliation between sinful man and his holy Maker; it made a road from heaven to earth, by which God could come down to man and show mercy; it made a road from earth to heaven by which man could draw near to God and yet not feel afraid. Without it, there could have been no remission of sin. Through it, a fountain has been formed wherein sinners can wash and be clean to all eternity (Rom. 3:26)
“This wondrous blood of Christ applied to your conscience can cleanse you from all sin. It matters nothing what your sins may have been: ‘Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool’ (Isa. 1:18). From sins of youth and sins of age, from sins of ignorance and since of knowledge, from sins of open profligacy and sins of secret vice, from sins against law and since against Gospel, from sins of head, heart, tongue, thought, and imagination, from sins against each and all of the Ten Commandments–from all these the blood of Christ can set us free. To this end was it appointed; for this cause was it shed; for this purpose, it is still a fountain open to all mankind. That thing which you cannot do for yourself can be done in a moment by this precious fountain. YOU CAN HAVE ALL YOUR SINS CLEANSED AWAY” (J.C. Ryle, Old Paths: Being Plain Statements of Some of the Weightier Matters of Christianity, printed in Issue 227 of Free Grace Broadcaster, p. 18).
Lord Jesus, very God and very God: thank You for shedding Your holy, innocent, and priceless blood for a vile sinner like me. Had You not humbled Yourself to take on human flesh, had You not yet further humbled Yourself to endure the cross, shed Your blood, and die there would be no hope for me. Only death, judgment, and eternal punishment in hell would be my lot and my just desserts for a life of rebellion against You. But because You shed Your blood, Your wondrous, efficacious, atoning blood I am filled with hope eternal. Because of the precious flow that has made me white as snow, I am forgiven! There is no other fount so pure, so clean, so holy that can wash me clean. Nothing but Your blood, Lord Jesus.
I know I am cleansed from all my sin, not because of anything I have done, but because of the mercy shown my by God the Father, which was manifested when He crushed His own Son, You my Lord, under the weight of His wrath. Father, thank You for allowing Your Son to be my Substitute. Thank You, Father, for receiving the priceless payment made by Your Son, my Lord–a payment I could never pay. Thank You, Father, for allowing Your Son’s sacrifice to suffice to mark my ledger of sin “PAID IN FULL!” Thank you, Almighty God, for being just and the justifier of one so wicked as myself. Thank You for receiving Your Son, my Savior, in my place. Lord Jesus, thank You for justifying me through your perfectly meritorious sacrifice, by taking on the wrath I deserved and clothing me in Your righteousness. I am white as snow because You dripped drops of scarlet life.
Holy Spirit, please remind me every moment of every day what price Christ paid for me. Remind me every moment of every day what debt Jesus’ sacrificial death on the cross canceled on my behalf. Fill me with such thankfulness that I would feel as though I would burst if I not tell at least one lost soul every day about the wondrous blood of Christ. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
by Mike Ratliff
1 Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, 2 so as to live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for human passions but for the will of God. (1 Peter 4:1-2 ESV)
Even though genuine Christians are new creations and have been purchased out of the world through the redemptive work of Christ on the Cross, as they attempt to live godly lives in the temporal, they will come under tremendous pressure to compromise by reverting back to the fleshly way of dealing with life. This way of reacting to circumstances, both good and bad, has emotions as its catalyst motivated by a form of self-righteousness that is manifested through self-exaltation and self-protection. Here we witness ourselves reacting to the good and bad in…
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