Daily Archives: November 19, 2014

Q&A: Will the Sins of Christians Be Revealed At the Final Judgment?

5 Pt. Salt

Speculation. We’ll have none of that here. Let’s stick to “What saith the Scriptures?”

First, Revelations  20:12

And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds.

“And the books were opened.”

No man knows what those books are called. And that’s not the question here.

According to God, through the psalmist, every wicked man thinks or says that God has forgotten his wicked deeds, his sins, and will never call them to account for them (Psalm 10, 11-13). But that’s not the question here.

The clear fact is this, books will be opened, and what’s in them is also clear in the context. Men will be judged “according to their deeds.” Boom…

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Evangelical leaders “serious about foreign policy” when evaluating 2016 presidential candidates, writes Washington Post columnist.

Joel C. Rosenberg's Blog

WashingtonPost-logo2On Wednesday, two Evangelical Christian leaders and I published an op-ed laying out criteria by which we — and many — Christians will be assessing 2016 presidential contenders.

The following is an article by a Washington Post columnist who has reviewed the op-ed and found intriguing the high priority we place on carefully evaluating a candidate’s approach towards Israel, Radical Islam, Iran and the future of U.S. foreign policy and national security policy. Worth reading….

By Jennifer Rubin, Washington Post, November 19, 2014

We have often stressed how critical national security is to Christian conservatives and therefore how important it will be in the GOP presidential primaries in 2016. More proof of that comes in an op-ed by three prominent Christian conservative leaders.

Joel C. Rosenberg, a former senior adviser on two U.S. presidential campaigns, Penny Nance, CEO and President of Concerned Women for America, and Ralph…

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GTY Blog: Persecution and Submission

Acts 4

Code: B141119

by John MacArthur

Is persecution good for the church? We’ve seen the blessings and fruit of persecution for individual believers—that it proves the quality of our faith and directs our focus to eternity. But what about the church?

Church-Wide Benefits of Persecution

There are at least two corporate benefits persecution brings to local churches and the church at large. First, persecution narrows the focus of the church. There’s no time to chase trends and cater to worldly “seekers” when you live under the threat of violent persecution. In fact, there’s no point in trying to make the church attractive to the world, since no amount of pomp and misdirection can entice a person to intentionally invite persecution. All pseudo-evangelistic trickery immediately goes out the window—it can’t hold up under the weight of fierce oppression and suffering.

Second, persecution purges the church of easy-believism, nominal Christianity, the prosperity gospel, and all sorts of other worldly influences and distractions. When it’s no longer convenient or lucrative to call yourself a Christian, many false believers will abandon the church. What’s left will be a purer body of believers, more useful and more effective for the sake of God’s life-transforming gospel.

That’s because when persecution comes to the church, true believers don’t flee. Nor do they fight back against the persecution, or try to protest or legislate it away. Instead, authentic Christians submit to persecution.

The Pattern of the Persecuted

Beginning today, we’re going to discuss the biblical model for dealing with persecution. Specifically, we’re going to consider the example of the early church in Acts, and how they responded to the persecution they faced within the first weeks of the church’s existence.

Acts 4 begins with the arrest of Peter and John for preaching the gospel and the resurrection of Christ, and heeling a crippled man outside the temple in Jerusalem.

As they were speaking to the people, the priests and the captain of the temple guard and the Sadducees came up to them, being greatly disturbed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection from the dead. And they laid hands on them and put them in jail until the next day, for it was already evening. (Acts 4:1-3)

In verse five, the story picks up the following morning as they were brought up for trial.

On the next day, their rulers and elders and scribes were gathered together in Jerusalem; and Annas the high priest was there, and Caiaphas and John and Alexander, and all who were of high-priestly descent. When they had placed them in the center, they began to inquire, “By what power, or in what name, have you done this?” (Acts 4:5-7)

In a sense, pointing out the apostles’ submission in that passage is an argument from silence. Nowhere does Scripture indicate that they struggled against their captors or fought against their detention. But in that silence is a notable lack of resistance, especially from Peter, who just weeks earlier lopped off a Roman soldier’s ear in a misguided attempt to protect Christ from arrest. It’s clear that in the intervening days, his attitudes about submission and self-defense changed significantly.

That pattern of submission repeats throughout the New Testament. The apostles frequently faced legal and physical repercussions for their ministries. Many of them suffered long imprisonments, vicious beatings, and ultimately martyrdom. Yet in every instance, they faithfully submitted to wicked authorities and their unjust punishments. The pattern in the early church was not to avoid or fight persecution, but to submit to it, trusting in God to sovereignly work through it to accomplish His purposes.

Submitting to the Sanhedrin

For their trial, Peter and John were brought before Israel’s ruling body, the Sanhedrin. It was a group of the most influential Jewish leaders—priests, scribes, elders, and other officers. Luke (the author of Acts) gives us some indication of the makeup of the Sanhedrin in the names he recorded. Each of those men likely belonged to the same ruling family, related by blood or by marriage. By singling them out, Luke emphasizes the corrupt power structure of the Sanhedrin’s oligarchy.

It’s important to remember this is the same group of dignitaries, rulers, and VIPs who condemned Christ to death at the hands of the Romans just weeks earlier. The same wickedness that led them to reject and crucify Jesus was now leading them to stamp out the influence of His followers. In fact, they knew that the apostles were telling the truth when they preached Christ’s resurrection, and yet they were prepared to go to great lengths to silence that truth.

Perhaps no other group in Israel was in greater need of hearing the clear call of the gospel. And through their submission, Peter and John were perfectly positioned to preach the truth to this kangaroo court. Their quiet confidence in God’s sovereignty provided them with an important gospel opportunity before the Sanhedrin.

What did Peter and John do with that opportunity? We’ll look at that next time, and how it illustrates another key aspect of biblically responding to persecution.


Available online at: http://www.gty.org/resources/Blog/B141119
COPYRIGHT ©2014 Grace to You

Comfort Zone: God’s will.

 

“If sin disgusts [God] so much, why does He continue to allow it to exist? Isn’t He omnipotent and isn’t everything according to his will? And all those that supposedly go to Heaven will continue to sin if free will exists in Heaven?” Walder Frey

No, everything isn’t according to His will. There are at least two “wills” of God. There is His perfect will, where there is no murder, rape, hatred, racism, lust, rebellion, jealousy, adultery, fornication, homosexuality, lying, stealing, blasphemy, etc.  God will have His perfect will when His Kingdom comes (“The Day of the Lord”), and His will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.

In the meanwhile, we have His permissive will, where He permits Nazi Germany, abortion, murder, rape, hatred, racism, lust, rebellion, jealousy, adultery, fornication, homosexuality, lying, stealing, blasphemy, etc.  Here is the reason He is permitting evil:

“But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up” (2 Peter 3:8-10).

In answer to your question about sin in Heaven-Scripture makes it clear that no sin will enter God’s Kingdom. So you had better make sure your sins are forgiven. Those who die in their sins will be damned. You can be sure of that. If you would like to live forever, see http://www.needGod.com

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After synagogue attack, Obama urges both terrorists and Israelis to “be calm”

WINTERY KNIGHT

The Weekly Standard reports on Obama’s reaction to the latest terrorist attack against Jews in Israel:

After a Palestinian terror attack that killed [five] in Israel, President Barack Obama is calling for both sides to be calm. “Too many Israelis have died; too many Palestinians have died. At this difficult time I think it’s important for both Palestinians and Israelis to try to work together to lower tensions and reject violence,” said President Obama, according to the White House pool report.

The death toll is now 5, according to the Washington Post. How is it possible that the President would do the equivalent of urging a woman who has been raped and her rapist to not rape each other any more? Well, there are no more elections, so the faked support for our allies is really coming off. Hamas has not claimed responsibility, but Palestinians are celebrating the attack.

Obama wasn’t…

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