Daily Archives: December 1, 2014

Amnesty executive action: illegal immigrants will get Social Security and Medicare


Washington Examiner reports.


A new clash over retirement benefits has come to a head following President Obama’s decision to unilaterally protect up to 5 million illegal immigrants from deportation.

The White House now acknowledges that many of the illegal immigrants spared from deportation under Obama’s sweeping executive action will become eligible for Social Security and Medicare benefits once they reach retirement age.

[…]However, Obama was less eager to wade into the debate about what to do with newly protected immigrants now paying into Social Security. He didn’t address the matter while outlining his immigration plan in a prime-time address to the nation, but White House aides later confirmed GOP suspicions about how Obama’s unilateral move would affect retirement benefits.

Analysts said that Republicans would use the admission to argue the president is misleading the public about the details of his immigration action.

“It is a bit of surprise,” said…

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“Prophetic & Pastoral”: Study notes on I Thessalonians (as prepared for recent conferences for Israeli & Palestinian pastors)

Joel C. Rosenberg's Blog

The church of the Thessalonians was planted during the Apostle Paul's 2nd Missionary Journey. The church of the Thessalonians was planted during the Apostle Paul’s 2nd Missionary Journey.

Last month, several pastors and Joshua Fund colleagues and I had the joy of teaching through I Thessalonians, verse by verse and chapter by chapter. We did so at a conference of Israeli pastors and ministry leaders their wives (both Jewish and Arab) in an Israeli city, and at a conference of Palestinian pastors and ministry leaders and their wives in a West Bank city.

Amidst all the tensions between Jews and Arabs right now, it was so special to see us all come together as brothers and sisters in Christ for fellowship, refreshment, prayer, and the study of God’s powerful Word.

At the first conference, I gave an overview of the Epistle and taught through chapter one.

Here are my personal study notes. I hope you find them helpful.


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How To Handle Temptation: Part 1 (James 1:13–16)

Joe Quatrone, Jr.

Serpent-and-AppleThe mature person is patient in trials. Sometimes the trials may be tests sent by God or they may be temptations sent by Satan, and encouraged by our own fallen nature. If we are not careful the testings on the outside may become temptations on the inside. It is this second aspect of trials—temptations on the inside—that James deals with in this section.

When our circumstances are difficult, we may find ourselves complaining against God, questioning His love, and resisting His will. At this point, Satan provides us with an opportunity to escape the difficulty. This opportunity is a temptation.

There are many illustrations of this truth found in the Bible. Abraham arrived in Canaan and discovered a famine there. He was not able to care for his flocks and herds. This trial was an opportunity to prove his devotion to God; but Abraham turned it into a temptation and…

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J.D. GREEAR: 10 Plumblines for Local Outreach (Part 1)

Ten years ago, as a church, we began to ask what it might look like to be a blessing to our city. We were studying through the book of Acts, and came to this passage in Acts 8: “The crowds paid attention with one mind to what Philip said, as they heard and saw the signs he was performing . . . so there was much joy in that city(Acts 8:6–8). When we asked ourselves if there was “much joy” in Raleigh-Durham as a result of our presence there, we believed the answer was “no.” So we resolved that with God’s help we would become a blessing to our city—to demonstrate Christ’s love to them, to bring his healing to the places in our city that needed him most.

We’ve grown a lot since that time, and I’ve seen God’s hand in so many stories of lives changed and communities impacted by Christ’s love on display. As I look to the future of our local outreach, I’m excited about what God will continue to do as he uses us to love, edify, and build up our community.

Over the next four days, I’ll be sharing the ten “plumblines” that our local outreach team has developed, the principles that make up our local outreach DNA. These plumblines represent our attempt to add some clarity as we continue following Christ into the darkest and most broken parts of our city.

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Twenty Ways to Answer A Fool [10]


Does Christianity have a narrow view of morality and ignore real evils while accepting imaginary ones?

I return once again to examining the ramblings of Chaz Bufe, atheist, anarchist, Communist philosopher, and week-end blues guitar player.

He wrote up a tract entitled 20 Reasons to Abandon Christianity. I have taken it upon myself to consider each one of his reasons in turn so as to determine if it is a legitimate reason or not. So far what I have discovered is a man who is bitter against the Roman Catholic Church and has self-inflicted blindness to the severe problems of his own chosen worldview of atheistic anarchy.

Points 11 and 12 are short and contain similar complaints, so I will consider each one in turn.

11. Christianity has an exceedingly narrow, legalistic view of morality. Christianity not only reduces, for all practical purposes, the question of morality to that…

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“The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1”- A Christian Perspective

J.W. Wartick - Reconstructing Faith

mockingjay-p1“The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1” is yet another blockbuster hit in the Hunger Games Trilogy. Here, I will reflect on a number of themes found in the movie, drawing out places the film resonates with the Christian worldview. There will be SPOILERS in what follows.

Social Contract?

The concept of a “social contract” theory of government is put forward by President Snow. At one point, he is speaking out for peace (ironically, while executing several prisoners), and his argument is that the Districts are in a contract with the Capitol, which is to provide “order” and justice.

The scene is deeply ironic–and meant to be. It shows what is inherently wrong in a system which relies upon a contract (in this case, one that a side is forced into) as the basis for morality. Simply having such a contract does not, in and of itself bring about a moral…

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Essential Truths of the Christian Faith: 1997 National Conference

Miscarriage, Disability, & God’s Glory

Did you have a miscarriage? Do you have a mentally or physically disabled child? Did you get pregnant when you were not planning to? What a comfort to know that no child is conceived or born without a purpose!disabled child

First of all, no child is conceived without a purpose.

If you are pregnant, it was not an accident that the baby in your womb was conceived, even if you were not planning to get pregnant. God planned your child’s conception! Now those of you who had a miscarriage might ask, “What was God’s purpose then in the life of our child who died in the womb?” I don’t know the exact answer, but what I do know is that according to Psalm 135:6, “The LORD does whatever pleases him.” And since God does whatever is glorifying to him, we can say that ultimately God took your child for God’s own…

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