Daily Archives: May 22, 2015

The Persuasive Language of Bible Critics

The Reformed Reader

Truth Matters: Confident Faith in a Confusing World This is one outstanding book: Truth Matters by A. Kostenberger, D. Bock, and J. Chatraw.  It is basically an explanation of the current attacks on Scripture (by professors and authors such as Bart Ehrman) and a reasonable, biblical answer to these attacks.  While it is aimed at college students, I’m sure all Christians can benefit from this book.

Speaking of the current attacks on Scripture, in Truth Matters the authors point out some ways that the critics – like some professors in religious departments – often gain an ear and open the door for skepticism of Scripture.  Here are a few ways critics throw doubt on the validity and canonicity of Scripture:

“First, they speak your language.  Ehrman, for example, comes at you with a story – very compelling – of how he gravitated toward Christian belief as a needy teenager, not far distant  from the age and…

View original post 687 more words

May 22, 2015 Truth2Freedom Daily News/Commentary Collection

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May 22, 2015

BLOOMBERG

Former U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates is done defending the Boy Scouts’ ban on gay leaders. Now president of the Boy Scouts of America, Gates said that the organization’s position that forbids gay adults from participating had become outdated.

Senators rushed to develop fallback plans in case legislation curbing some U.S. spy programs fails to get enough votes and raised the possibility that anti-terror programs would expire June 1.

George Pataki, the former three-term New York governor considering a run for president, said the U.S. should send troops to Iraq to confront Islamic State militants.

The Clinton Foundation disclosed nearly 100 instances in which it received payments for speeches delivered by Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton over the past 13 years, including a number from foreign entities. In all, the 97 engagements brought between $12 million and $26.4 million into the foundation since 2002.

The cost of living excluding food and fuel rose at 0.3 percent, a faster pace than expected in April, indicating inflation is inching toward the Federal Reserve’s goal.

Puerto Rico’s House of Representatives passed a bill that would raise the junk-rated island’s sales tax, a move that may help it sell debt and ease a cash crunch. House members voted 26 to 24 to boost the levy to 11.5 percent from 7 percent through March.

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden praised Kentucky Senator Rand Paul’s 10-hour, 31-minute attempt to slow down a vote on renewing the Patriot Act. “It represents a sea change from a few years ago, when intrusive new surveillance laws were passed without any kind of meaningful opposition or debate,” Snowden wrote. “Whatever you think about Rand Paul or his politics, it’s important to remember that when he took the floor to say ‘No’ to any length of reauthorization of the Patriot Act, he was speaking for the majority of Americans-more than 60% of whom want to see this kind of mass surveillance reformed or ended.

AP Top Stories

Ireland took to the polls on Friday to vote on whether same-sex marriage should be legal, in a referendum that has exposed sharp divisions between communities in this traditionally Catholic nation. Allowing gay couples to wed would be a seismic change in a country where homosexuality was only decriminalized in 1993, and where abortion remains illegal except where the mother’s life is in danger.

China declared victory on Friday over an encounter with a US surveillance aircraft overflying the contested South China Sea, saying its military “drove away” the intruder with radio warnings.

Islamist rebels overran a hospital in northwest Syria where at least 150 regime forces and dozens of civilians were trapped for nearly a month, a monitor said.

Emails from Hillary Clinton obtained by a US daily revealed her own sources provided intelligence on a deadly 2012 attack in Libya that conflicted with White House statements.

Militants from Somalia-based al Shabaab attacked a village in northeast Kenya but were beaten back by security forces. Security forces swiftly mobilized and engaged the militants in a gun battle.

The oldest member of the Rockefeller family is giving a gift as part of his 100th birthday celebration: 1,000 acres of land including streams, trails and carriage roads abutting Acadia National Park.

Three Ukrainian servicemen have been killed and 12 wounded in the latest clashes between government forces and Russian-backed separatists, further eroding a three-month-old ceasefire.

Florida officials have resumed raising some of the hundreds of thousands of tires dumped off its shores decades ago during an unsuccessful attempt to create an artificial reef.

A 4.1 magnitude earthquake shook wine country north of San Francisco on Thursday night.

Cash-strapped Greece will cut the pay of bank bailout fund executives by 40 percent because their salaries are a “provocation” during a time of austerity cuts elsewhere.

BBC

Islamic State militants have seized the last Syrian government-controlled border crossing between Syria and Iraq, a Syria monitoring group said.

At least 10 people have been killed in a suicide bombing at a Shia mosque in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province, a doctor has told the BBC. At least 70 had been injured, “some very critically”.

Myanmar has rescued two migrant boats holding more than 200 people in its waters near the border with Bangladesh.

Mexican federal investigators are looking into the disappearance of at least 15 people in the city of Chilapa in Guerrero state, after it was overrun in early May by hundreds of gunmen.

The EU has agreed a $2bn loan to Ukraine – described as a landmark deal for a non-EU member.

Finland has sent letters to nearly a million reservists to collect their contact details and remind them of their duties in case of combat, a defense ministry spokesman said. The letter tells reservists which regiment or unit to join in the event of war.

WND

Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee led by Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, are pressing President Obama and his administration to explain how an illegal immigrant facing child molestation and pornography charges fell under the feds’ radar and received amnesty.

The National Health Interview Survey, a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention project, found in an extensive research paper in 2013 less than 3 percent of participants labeled themselves as “gay,” lesbian or bisexual, Breitbart reported. Only 1.6 percent in this same survey self-identified as “gay” or lesbian.

For 14 days over the next seven months, the Ten Commandments scroll, known to scholars as 4Q41, will make a rare public appearance at the Israel Museum as part of a new exhibit called “A Brief History of Humankind,” the scroll fragment is one of humanity’s most precious documents.


Top News – 5/22/2015

Obama sells Iran deal directly to US Jews
Washington – Amid a bitter public fight with Israel’s government, President Barack Obama on Friday donned a yarmulke and pitched his nuclear deal with Iran and the case for a Palestinian state directly to US Jews.

55,000 have fled IS-captured Ramadi since mid-May: UN
The United Nations said on Friday that around 55,000 people had fled Ramadi since a surge by the Islamic State group in mid-May that landed the Iraqi provincial capital in the hands of jihadists.

Financial markets remain in a prolonged period of stability
German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday said more work is needed on marathon loan talks with Greece but analysts argue that both sides know there is no alternative to a deal. Speaking after a two-hour meeting late on Thursday with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and French President Francois Hollande in Riga, Merkel urged Athens to continue talks with its international creditors.

Boy Scouts’ chief says ban on gay adults ‘unsustainable’
The head of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) has said that the organisation’s long-standing ban on participation by openly gay adults is unsustainable. Robert Gates said no changes would be made at the meeting, but opened the door to a future policy review. The former US Defence Secretary cited defiant chapters, possible legal challenges and other developments related to gay rights in the US.

Islamic State ‘seizes last Syria-Iraq border crossing’
Islamic State militants have seized the last Syrian government-controlled border crossing between Syria and Iraq, a Syrian monitoring group says. Government forces withdrew from al-Tanf – known as al-Waleed in Iraq – crossing as IS advanced, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said. The loss of al-Tanf to IS follows the group’s takeover of the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra on Thursday.

Saudi Arabia: Suicide bomber strikes Shia mosque
A suicide bomber has attacked a Shia mosque in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province, causing casualties, state media say. One witness told Reuters news agency there was a huge explosion at the Imam Ali mosque in the village of al-Qadeeh. He estimated there were at least 30 casualties in the attack at the mosque, where more than 150 people were said to be praying.

EU agrees €1.8bn loan to cash-strapped Ukraine
The EU has agreed a €1.8bn (£1.3bn; $2bn) loan to Ukraine – the largest financial deal with a non-EU member. The agreement was signed at an EU summit in Riga, Latvia, which brings together the leaders of the 28-member bloc and six post-Soviet nations.

Joe Lieberman: ‘US heading for temporary solution to Iran nuclear threat’
…Joe Lieberman says negotiations with Iran are heading toward a very bad agreement. “The goal was to end the Iranian nuclear program in return for the end of economic sanctions…looks like we’re heading toward the…end of economic sanctions and the temporary dialing back of Iran’s nuclear program.” Lieberman says the move by Congress to give itself power to review any final deal with Iran is “very unusual,” but he sides with it unequivocally.

Baltimore’s mayor: Spike in crime ‘disheartening’
Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake called the city’s recent spike in violence “disheartening” Thursday as police work to address a dramatic increase in homicides and nonfatal shootings.

ISIS executes 17 people in Syria’s Palmyra: Monitor
Fighters from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group executed at least 17 people, including civilians, after the militants seized Syria’s ancient city of Palmyra on Thursday, a monitor said. “ISIS executed 17 people, including civilians and loyalist fighters. At least four of them were beheaded,” Rami Abdel Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group, told AFP.

Islamic State seizes more than half of Syria
The Islamic State has seized more than half of Syria after taking full control of the town of Palmyra and its ancient ruins, activists said Thursday. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the extremists had seized more than 36,000 square miles of the country and had also taken control of “the vast majority” of its gas and oil fields. USA TODAY could not independently confirm the information.

Is China Under The Skyscraper Curse?
The fact is that Shanghai Tower is opening during the darkest period of China’s economy in recent years. This make me wonder if the skyscraper index which showed that the world’s tallest buildings have risen on the eve of economic downturns (see graph above) could have some predictive value than mere coincidence.

Pentagon goes public with latest dust-up in South China Sea
The U.S. military has begun to carefully but publicly challenge Chinese island-building on disputed reefs and shoals in the South China Sea, creating fresh tension in a potential global tinderbox as both countries shift forces into the area.

Iran warns Israel of Hezbollah rockets if attacked
A senior Iranian military official warned on Thursday that any Israeli attack would unleash a firestorm of missiles on its cities fired by the Islamic republic’s Hezbollah allies in Lebanon. The Shiite militia has more than 80,000 rockets ready to fire at Tel Aviv and Haifa, said General Yahya Rahim Safavi, military adviser to Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Ireland to vote in same-sex marriage referendum
Voters in the Republic of Ireland will take part in a referendum on legalising same-sex marriage on Friday. More than 3.2m people will be asked whether they want to amend the country’s constitution to allow gay and lesbian couples to marry.

Israel rules out any payment to ‘enemy’ Iran
After a Swiss court reportedly ordered an Israeli oil firm to compensate Iran over a scrapped joint venture, Israel said Thursday that its laws prohibited any payment to “the enemy.” Iranian state news agency IRNA said Wednesday that the court had found Israel’s Trans-Asian Oil (TAO) liable for payment of $1.1 billion to the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC).

FBI admits no major cases cracked with Patriot Act snooping powers
FBI agents can’t point to any major terrorism cases they’ve cracked thanks to the key snooping powers in the Patriot Act, the Justice Department’s inspector general said in a report Thursday that could complicate efforts to keep key parts of the law operating. Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz said that between 2004 and 2009, the FBI tripled its use of bulk collection under Section 215 of the Patriot Act, which allows government agents to compel businesses to turn over records and documents, and increasingly scooped up records of Americans who had no ties to official terrorism investigations.


Top Headlines – 5/22/2015

Iran threatens ‘80,000 rockets at Tel Aviv and Haifa’ over distorted Ya’alon comment

Israel rules out any payment to ‘enemy’ Iran

Iranian cargo ship changes course after request from UN, Pentagon

Joe Lieberman: ‘US heading for temporary solution to Iran nuclear threat’

Top US official in Israel to discuss regional nuclear ban

US Pressing Israel to Lose Its Nukes

US to restock IDF stores with bunker busters, guided bombs

Former Israeli President Peres to participate in conference with Arab world leaders

Peres says ‘clear majority of Israelis back two states,’ urges immediate resumption of talks

Gaza unemployment world’s highest as 60% of youth find themselves jobless

World Bank: Gaza facing ‘dangerous fiscal crisis’

Report: Common Core Lesson Plan Pushes Pro-Palestinian Agenda

Likud MK says Obama’s criticism of Netanyahu has ‘a bit of hypocrisy’

Presidential hopeful Chris Christie says Obama’s approach to Israel ‘shameful’

3 Years After He ‘Ended the War’: Obama Declares Iraq a ‘National Emergency’ for U.S.

All for nothing? US vets who fought for Ramadi angry over fall to ISIS

Obama: ‘I don’t think we’re losing’ fight with ISIS

Western allies split on action against Isil

UN alarmed by rebel reports that Syria-bound aid looted, stolen by Syrian army

Islamic State seizes Syria’s last border crossing with Iraq

ISIS fighters overrun Iraqi govt lines east of Ramadi

Lavrov: Russia ready to help Iraq defeat ISIS

Islamic State affiliate in Egypt vows attacks against judges after execution of 6 convicts

Muslim Brotherhood becoming more violent and radical

Gaddafi’s home town falls to Islamic State in anarchic Libya

Hillary got warning Benghazi attack was premeditated terrorism

Saudi Arabia seeks top spot on U.N. human rights council

More Than 100 Charged In Mob Killing Of Christian Couple In Pakistan

Russia Deployed Nuclear-Capable Gear, NATO Commander Says

EU, Ukraine sign $2 billion loan deal at Eastern Partnership summit

EU defies Russian “bully” but disappoints ex-Soviets

Expectations low for EU summit amid fears of provoking Russia

China says U.S. actions in South China Sea ‘irresponsible, dangerous’

Grand jury indicts Baltimore police in death of Freddie Gray

Ferguson Protesters Promised Cash To “Simulate Chaos,” Now Soros’ Group Won’t Pay, So They’re Protesting Them

Donald Trump: ‘This Country Is A Hellhole’

FBI admits no major cases cracked with Patriot Act snooping powers

FEC backs off flirtation with regulating Internet

Google a step closer to developing machines with human-like intelligence

Astronomer Royal Martin Rees: How soon will robots take over the world?

CERN Tests Large Hadron Collider at Record Energy to Break Protons, Achieves Breakthrough

Tepco May Need to Dump Fukushima Water Into Sea, UN Says

Earth is now in a seismically active period according to quake cluster theory

5.7 magnitude earthquake hits near Honiara, Solomon Islands

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Copiapo, Chile

Trinidad jolted by 4.6 magnitude earthquake

Magnitude 4.1 Earthquake Strikes North Of Napa

Popocateptl volcano in Mexico erupts to 22,000ft

Colima volcano in Mexico erupts to 16,000ft

Dust storm in Rajasthan claims 17 lives, injures 80

In September, The UN Launches A Major Sustainable Development Agenda For The Entire Planet

Josh Duggar resigns from Family Research Council after sexual abuse allegations

In heavily Catholic Ireland, voters to decide on same-sex marriage

Another Christian college faces backlash for student-athlete policy on LGBT issues

Boy Scout President Robert Gates Stresses Urgency in Lifting Ban on Openly Gay Leaders

Boy Scouts’ leader says ban on gay adults not sustainable

Federal judge rules again that gay couples have right to wed in Alabama

Ted Cruz: Many Republicans Scared of Gay Marriage/Religious Liberty Debate; Some Are Even Running for President


Daily Digest

May 22, 2015

THE FOUNDATION

“The judiciary of the United States is the subtle corps of sappers and miners constantly working under ground to undermine the foundations of our confederated fabric. They are construing our constitution from a co-ordination of a general and special government to a general and supreme one alone.” —Thomas Jefferson, letter to Thomas Ritchie, 1820

TOP RIGHT HOOKS

The Odd Millions: Clintons Disclose More Clandestine Cash

It seems like Hillary Clinton’s campaign is trying to get all the bad news out early (though there isn’t much good news). That way, the toxic waste might reach half-life before the primary election. The Clinton Foundation released more details into how the Clintons went from “dead broke” to One Percenters, and it shows the family’s overpriced speaking fees raked in $12 to $26.4 million more than previously disclosed. The money came from colleges, Wall Street companies like Goldman Sachs and foreign governments like Qatar. The Clintons didn’t disclose these payments because they counted them as revenue for a service, not donations. But in effect, this allowed groups to hand the Clintons a pile of undisclosed cash. Members of Congress sent a letter to the IRS asking it to reconsider the Clinton Foundation’s tax-exempt status. While asking the government to investigate the Clintons is valid, the letter may galvanize Democrats to rally around Clinton. Instead, Republicans should let Clinton twist in the wind. Either progressives realize Clinton doesn’t represent their idealism and challenge her majesty’s claim to the Oval Office, or they wear her like an albatross. More…

Sid Blumenthal Changed His Benghazi Story

On Wednesday, we noted that longtime Clinton friend and adviser Sidney Blumenthal told Hillary on Sept. 12, 2012, that the attack on the Benghazi consulate was sparked by a YouTube video. But after beginning to comb over some of Clinton’s released emails, The New York Times reports this gem: “The next day [September 13], Mr. Blumenthal sent Mrs. Clinton a more thorough account of what had occurred. Citing ‘sensitive sources’ in Libya, the memo provided extensive detail about the episode, saying that the siege had been set off by members of Ansar al-Shariah, the Libyan terrorist group. Those militants had ties to Al Qaeda, had planned the attacks for a month and had used a nearby protest as cover for the siege, the memo said. ‘We should get this around asap’ Mrs. Clinton said in an email to [her then-deputy chief of staff] Mr. Sullivan. ‘Will do,’ he responded. That information contradicted the Obama administration’s narrative at the time about what had spawned the attacks. Republicans have said the administration misled the country about the attacks because it did not want to undermine the notion that President Obama, who was up for re-election, was winning the war on terrorism.”

So Hillary knew with certainty two days after the attack that it wasn’t the spontaneous protest against an obscure Internet video that Barack Obama, Susan Rice and others in his administration would continue to claim for weeks afterward. And she knew this truth before she looked the father of slain former Navy SEAL Tyrone Woods in the eye and promised, “We’re going to have the person responsible for that video arrested.” It may turn out Hillary wishes she had released these emails before they became such a big story.

Fox, CNN to Determine Who’s a Presidential Candidate

Fox News announced Wednesday that only (ahem, only) 10 GOP candidates — the leaders in the polls — will be permitted to participate in the first presidential debate on Aug. 6 in Cleveland. Likewise, CNN will limit the first part of its Sept. 16 debate to the top 10 polling candidates, while allowing any who exceed 1% to come on stage for the second half. Certainly, we understand not wanting to have 27 people on stage competing for a few seconds of airtime. The GOP field is crowded this year, nearly to the point of being silly. But the decision to limit this to poll numbers is asinine, especially for the first debate. Voters don’t know the candidates very well yet, so why limit the stage to polling on people who are as-yet unknown quantities? It amounts to making early name recognition the bar of entry, which then — ta da — limits name recognition for those who haven’t got it yet. This is a good example of what we like to call pollaganda, a propagandistic disinformation technique where political polling masquerades as “objective journalism” and instead advances a particular bias. The networks can thus use the restricted GOP field to drive public opinion rather than reflect or inform it. Our solution: If candidates have done the necessary paperwork and are qualified, put ’em on stage one way or another, even if it takes multiple debates in varying arrangements.

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FEATURED RIGHT ANALYSIS

Gates Says Boy Scouts Must Preemptively Surrender

By Nate Jackson

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Robert Gates, president of the Boy Scouts of America, told the organization Thursday at its annual national meeting that the time has come to end the ban on homosexual adult leaders in the organization. Citing the wave of cultural changes taking place under threat from homosexual activists, including same-sex marriage edicts in the courts and anti-discrimination laws in several states, Gates insisted, “The status quo in our movement’s membership standards cannot be sustained.”

“The one thing we cannot do is put our heads in the sand and pretend this challenge will go away or abate,” Gates added. “Quite the opposite is happening.”

Translation: Abandon traditional values in the face of pressure from the Rainbow Mafia.

Far from putting “our heads in the sand,” however, defending both traditional Judeo-Christian values and religious liberty itself is called standing on principle.

Gates did not call upon BSA leaders to make a decision on the matter forthwith, but he did caution that if the organization doesn’t change on its own the homosexual lobby and its allies in the courts are likely to force the issue. “If we wait for the courts to act,” he warned, “we could end up with a broad ruling that could forbid any kind of membership standard,” including belief in duty to God and specifically serving the needs of boys.

So he argued for change, leaving it up to individual troops and councils and the churches who sponsor them … for now. However, such a change would only leave troops and councils across the nation susceptible to legal assaults by the Tolerance Brigade.

Gates, a former secretary of defense and CIA director, has a track record of knuckling under to homosexual activists. He was at the helm of the Pentagon for the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in 2010, justifying his actions at the time as an end to discrimination rather than calling the change what it was: an attempt by gays and lesbians to remake yet another institution to suit the needs of a small but vocal fraction of the population.

(On that note, homosexuals and their allies have managed to erroneously convince more than half of Americans that gays make up at least 20% of the population. The true number is more like 3%, but it helps the agenda if it appears there are far more of them.)

When Gates took the job as president of the BSA in 2014, he said he had no intention of allowing openly homosexual scout leaders. The BSA was already reeling from a 2013 decision that summarily dropped the ban on openly homosexual youths. The vote was passed by 60% of the 1,400 delegates in attendance, which may seem like a landslide but is hardly a representative cross-section of the national organization.

Scout membership nationally is already down more than 10% since the last encroachment of gay activists — but the prospect of homosexual leaders overseeing troops will most assuredly lead to a much more significant decline.

Next thing you know, the BSA will be banning water guns. Oh, wait

Gates is correct that the homosexual lobby isn’t done reshaping the 103-year-old organization to suit its agenda. Scouts for Equality and Human Rights Campaign issued statements after Gates’ speech Thursday saying they were heartened by his words, but wanted to see more action.

HRC President Chad Griffin said, “It’s time for BSA leaders to show true leadership and embrace a full national policy of inclusion that does not discriminate against anyone because of who they are.” Unless of course you want to discriminate against someone for their religious beliefs — that’s perfectly acceptable to HRC and other members of the homosexual lobby.

And never mind that the “tolerant” thing to do would be to live and let live. Set up another scouting organization to advance and promote leftist values, and leave the Boy Scouts alone.

Yet proponents of the homosexual agenda have convinced the courts and the Leftmedia to go along with their plan to dismantle every institution in this country for the sake of accommodating, promoting and advancing their own lifestyle. Submit to homosexual leaders, don’t oppose same-sex marriage, bake the cake — whatever the demand, you will comply. Or else. So-called tolerance is a one-way street.

What takes place between consenting adults is one thing, but when did it ever become necessary to force other people to condone that behavior?

“We must deal with the world as it is, not as we might wish it to be,” Gates declared. Well, the world as it is right now is being reshaped by an aggressive minority who want little more than the power to reshape the culture and its institutions in its own image.

TODAY AT PATRIOTPOST.US

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

For more, visit Right Opinion.

OPINION IN BRIEF

Mona Charen: “Here’s how Democrats prefer to arrange matters regarding women: They claim that nominating the first woman for president is a huge advance for all women, proving that women are just as competent as men. Yet they demand that their particular woman be insulated from the usual vigorous debate that is essential for democracy. Any criticism of Hillary Clinton is presumptive sexism, while her attacks on opponents are unrestricted. Neat trick if you can pull if off — and she can if Republicans accept the bridle. In a sense, Clinton has been using the victimized-woman angle for her whole political career. … The best response to the charge of sexism is ridicule. Any female candidate who hides behind her own skirts to avoid robust debate is not striking a blow for equality or dignity. Rather than displaying fitness for the job of commander in chief, she’s conveying her weakness and inability to compete. Any male candidate who pulls his punches is patronizing her. Anyone who takes her on (within the bounds of civility) is according her respect. … Male Republicans … can comb [Hillary’s] State Department and Senate careers for material without fear. She’s asking to be taken seriously. Oblige her.”

SHORT CUTS

Insight: “It is the duty of every citizen according to his best capacities to give validity to his convictions in political affairs.” —Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

Non Compos Mentis: “Franklin Roosevelt, probably the best president we ever had, certainly in the 20th century, was very secretive and manipulative. And we still thought he was a good president. So if Hillary Clinton is secretive … is that going to help us get any further here?” —MSNBC’s Chris Matthews

Hold him to it: “Look, 20 years from now, I’m still going to be around, God willing. If Iran has a nuclear weapon, it’s my name on this. I think it’s fair to say that in addition to our profound national-security interests, I have a personal interest in locking this down.” —Barack Obama

Annals of the absurd: “I don’t think we’re losing.” —Barack Obama on the fight against ISIL

Sometimes Hollywood gets it right: “Life’s not fair, it never was, it isn’t now and it won’t ever be. Do not fall into the trap, the entitlement trap, of feeling like you’re a victim. You are not.” —Academy Award-winning actor Matthew McConaughey to University of Houston graduates

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Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis!
Managing Editor Nate Jackson

Join us in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform — Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen — standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families.

“The Patriot Post (http://patriotpost.us/subscribe/ )”


The Briefing

1) Pot edible fad presents nationwide challenge police, parents, and even children

New Challenge for Police: Finding Pot in Lollipops and Marshmallows, New York Times (Catherine Saint Louis)

2) Use of energy drinks, ADHD drugs for productivity reveal redefinition of ‘normal’ energy

Selling the Young on ‘Gaming Fuel’, New York Times (Hilary Stout)

Workers Seeking Productivity in a Pill Are Abusing A.D.H.D. Drugs, New York Times (Alan Schwarz)

3) Addiction to porn and video games present crisis of masculinity, says pschologist

Psychologist Philip Zimbardo: ‘Boys risk becoming addicted to porn, video games and Ritalin’, The Guardian (Stuart Jeffries)

Porn and video game addicts risk ‘masculinity crisis,’ says Stanford professor, Reuters (Robert Galbraith)

Hijacking the Brain — How Pornography Works, AlbertMohler.com (R. Albert Mohler)

4) American culture now discouraging taking on adult responsibilities

Punishing parents who deviate from the government-enforced norm, Washington Post (George Will)

In other news…


Iran vs. Israel: Who’s Making the Threats?

PressTV, The Debate
May 18, 2015
http://www.danielpipes.org/15860/iran-israel-nuclear-threats

A speech by the Israeli defense minister sets the stage for a discussion of whether Jerusalem threatens Tehran or the other way around. Daniel Pipes debated Brian Becker of ANSWER Coalition on a television station run by the Islamic Republic of Iran..

An excerpt from the conversation, at 12:45:

Pipes: Do I think the U.S. government should bomb the Iranian nuclear installations? Absolutely, and the sooner the better.

Moderator: No, should Israel do it?

Pipes: I would prefer the United States government do it but if the United States government won’t do it, I hope the Israelis will do it, be otherwise we have madmen in Tehran controlling nuclear weapons that threaten the Iranian population, the Israeli population, the American population, and many other populations besides. Best to get rid of this in advance, such as the Israelis did in Iraq in 1981 and in Syria in 2007.

Here are the contents of the two pages Mr. Pipes showed the camera:

1. Iran finances and provides arms to Hamas which periodically attacks Israel.

2. Iran finances and provides arms to Hezbollah which periodically attacks Israel.

3. Khomeini called for “wiping Israel out of existence” on coming to power in. (1979)

4. Mohammad Khatami, president of Iran: “If we abide by real legal laws, we should mobilize the whole Islamic world for a sharp confrontation with the Zionist regime … if we abide by the Koran, all of us should mobilize to kill.” (2000)

5. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei: “It is the mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to erase Israel from the map of the region.” (2001)

6. Hassan Nasrallah, a leader of Hezbollah: “If they [Jews] all gather in Israel, it will save us the trouble of going after them worldwide.” (2002)

7. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, president of Iran: he repeatedly called for Israel to be “wiped off the map.” (2005)

8. Nasrallah: “Israel is our enemy. This is an aggressive, illegal, and illegitimate entity, which has no future in our land. Its destiny is manifested in our motto: ‘Death to Israel.'” (2005)

9. Yahya Rahim Safavi, commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps: “With God’s help the time has come for the Zionist regime’s death sentence.” (2008)

10. Mohammad Hassan Rahimian, Khamenei’s representative to the Moustazafan Foundation: “We have manufactured missiles that allow us, when necessary to replace [sic] Israel in its entirety with a big holocaust.” (2010)

11. Mohammad Reza Naqdi, the commander of the Basij paramilitary force: “We recommend them [the Zionists] to pack their furniture and return to their countries. And if they insist on staying, they should know that a time while arrive when they will not even have time to pack their suitcases.” (2011)

12. Khamenei: “The Zionist regime is a cancerous tumor that will be removed.” (2012)

13. Ahmad Alamolhoda, a member of the Assembly of Experts: “The destruction of Israel is the idea of the Islamic Revolution in Iran and is one of the pillars of the Iranian Islamic regime. We cannot claim that we have no intention of going to war with Israel.” (2013)

14. Nasrallah: “The elimination of Israel is not only a Palestinian interest. It is the interest of the entire Muslim world and the entire Arab world.” (2013)

15. Hojateleslam Alireza Panahian, the advisor to Office of the Supreme Leader in Universities: “The day will come when the Islamic people in the region will destroy Israel and save the world from this Zionist base.” (2013)

16. Hojatoleslam Ali Shirazi, Khamenei’s representative in the Revolutionary Guard: “The Zionist regime will soon be destroyed, and this generation will be witness to its destruction.” (2013)

17. Khamenei: “This barbaric, wolflike & infanticidal regime of Israel which spares no crime has no cure but to be annihilated.” (2014)

18. Hossein Salami, the deputy head of the Revolutionary Guard: “We will chase you [Israelis] house to house and will take revenge for every drop of blood of our martyrs in Palestine, and this is the beginning point of Islamic nations awakening for your defeat.” (2014)

19. Salami: “Today we are aware of how the Zionist regime is slowly being erased from the world, and indeed, soon, there will be no such thing as the Zionist regime on Planet Earth.” (2014)

20. Hossein Sheikholeslam, the secretary-general of the Committee for Support for the Palestinian Intifada: “The issue of Israel’s destruction is important, no matter the method. We will obviously implement the strategy of the Imam Khomeini and the Leader on the issue of destroying the Zionists.” (2014)

21. Khamene’i called for Israel to be “annihilated.” (November 10, 2014)

22. Mohammad Ali Jafari, the commander-in-chief of the Revolutionary Guard: “The Revolutionary Guards will fight to the end of the Zionist regime … We will not rest easy until this epitome of vice is totally deleted from the region’s geopolitics.” (2015)

23. Mujtaba du Al-Nour, a senior figure in the Iranian Revolutionary Guards: Iran has rockets that can reach the heart of Tel-Aviv within six or seven minutes after being given the go ahead by the Supreme Guide, “even before the dust of rockets of the Zionists reach us”. (February 23, 2015)

24. General Mohammad Reza Naqdi, commander of Iran’s Basij militia in late March 2015: “Wiping Israel off the map is not up for negotiation.” (April 1, 2015)

25. Mojtaba Zolnour, a Khamenei representative in the IRGC: The “government of the Islamic Republic of Iran has divine permission to destroy Israel. … The Noble Koran permits the Islamic Republic of Iran to destroy Israel. … Even if Iran gives up its nuclear program, it will not weaken this country’s determination to destroy Israel.” (May 12, 2015)


VP Biden equates religious belief on sin of homosexuality to ‘violence with impunity’

by Marsha West

Christian Examiner reports:

Vice President Joe Biden has issued a statement likening “religious condemnation” of the sin of homosexuality to “violence with impunity,” among other things.

In the statement, issued from the White House on the “International Day against Homophobia and Transphobia,” celebrated widely in Europe and South America on May 17, Biden said the lesbian, gay and transgender (LGBT) community had displayed great bravery in the push for equal rights.

“In the last decade, thanks to the astounding bravery of the LGBT community and those who have championed their cause, the United States has made remarkable progress toward the ultimate goal of equality in law and in life. Our progress remains incomplete, but the momentum has shifted in the right direction.”

Read more


Ireland’s Gay Marriage Referendum a Sign of Roman Catholic Decline

by Marsha West

“In Ireland,” says a character in a 1904 George Bernard Shaw play, “the people is the Church, and the Church is the people.” But not so much anymore. On Friday (May 22), voters in this once deeply Roman Catholic country will decide whether the country’s constitution should be amended to allow for gay marriage. If […]

Read more of this post


 

Study of attitudes to same-sex marriage retracted over “fake data”

by Marsha West

According to The Guardian:

The senior author of a study claiming to find that a brief, face-to-face conversation with a gay political canvasser had the ability to soften the opinions of those opposed to same-sex marriage has retracted its findings, claiming there were errors in his co-author’s work.

The study, which was published in Science in December and was widely covered in the media, found support for same-sex marriage climbed among voters who had a single conversation with a gay or lesbian canvasser. In addition, the authors found that the changed views not only lasted for at least a year, but also positively influenced the opinions of other members of the household.

The optimistic slant on human nature provided by the research evaporated this week, however, when Professor Donald Green retracted the paper.

Read more


Iran threatens to destroy Tel Aviv if Israel attacks

Posted: 22 May 2015 08:00 AM PDT

A senior Iranian military official warned on Thursday that any Israeli attack would unleash a firestorm of missiles on its cities fired by the Islamic Republic’s Hezbollah allies in Lebanon.The Shiite militia has more than 80,000 rockets ready to fire at Tel Aviv and Haifa, said General Yahya Rahim Safavi, military adviser to Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.  “Iran, with the help of Hezbollah and its friends, is capable of destroying Tel Aviv and Haifa in case of military aggression on the part of the Zionists,” he said, quoted on state television. 

“I don’t think the Zionists would be so unintelligent as to create a military problem with Iran,” the general said. “They know the strength of Iran and Hezbollah.”Israeli military officials meanwhile have tacitly conveyed a threat to the Lebanese terror group through international media. Last week, the New York Times reported, based on maps and aerial photography from IDF officials, that Hezbollah has moved most of its military infrastructure into and around the Shiite villages of southern Lebanon. According to the paper, Israeli officials say Hezbollah’s move is tantamount to using the civilians as human shields. FULL REPORT

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California drought prompting state to cut water for farmers with oldest rights

Posted: 22 May 2015 07:43 AM PDT

California farmers who hold rights to water that date back as far as the Gold Rush are bracing for their first state-ordered conservation in decades, as a record drought prompts some of the deepest cuts yet in the country’s most productive agricultural state. After telling cities and towns to slash water use by 25 percent and cutting deliveries to some farmers and others, state officials said Wednesday that they would start mandatory cuts this week to the state’s oldest rights holders, who are historically spared from water restrictions.

Regulators said the first orders Friday will affect those holding century-old water rights in the watershed of the San Joaquin River, which runs from the Sierra Nevada mountains to San Francisco Bay and is one of the main water sources for farms and communities. Meanwhile, a second category of senior rights holders are making a surprise effort to stave off those kinds of cuts. Farmers who hold longstanding claims to water because their land lies along the waterways of the Sacramento-San Joaquin river delta offered to voluntarily reduce their water use by a quarter. Officials promised a decision Friday on that offer, which would yield on some of the most iron-clad water rights in California, as they try to chart a path forward for a state locked in its driest four-year period on record. FULL RECORD

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Iowa bird-flu farms fall short on containment measures

Posted: 21 May 2015 07:37 PM PDT

Measures to control the worst bird flu outbreak in U.S. history are not being enforced at several farms at its epicenter in northwestern Iowa, potentially increasing the risks that the disease could spread further, spot checks by Reuters show. In visits to six affected sites in Iowa last week, a Reuters reporter found procedures at three in Sioux County did not comply with USDA or state protocols for restricting access to infected sites, providing protective gear to workers and cleaning the wheels of vehicles leaving the sites.

Burke Healey, the USDA’s national incident commander coordinating response to the bird flu, said he was concerned about the findings of lax biosecurity in Iowa after hearing about them from Reuters. Shortfalls in biosecurity can violate agreements signed by farm owners, he said. “If they’re allowing you to drive in and out of that property unrestricted, then that’s going against what we’ve requested of them and what they’ve agreed to do for us,” Healey said. FULL REPORT

 

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Push to criminalize cash so that banks can manipulate digital money accelerates

Posted: 21 May 2015 07:27 PM PDT

There is an echo chamber of economic elitists, corporatists and officials forming to eliminate physical money in favor of creating a digital means of engaging in commerce that governments would control. One of the latest examples is Jim Leaviss, head of retail fixed interest at M&G Investments, who wrote recently in Britain’s Telegraph newspaper that a proposed new Denmark law should be viewed as a first step — a model, if you will — of abolishing “physical currency” and “normal bank accounts,” all to give “governments futuristic new tools to fight the cycle of ‘boom and bust.’”

Leaviss says the Danish proposal “sounds innocuous enough on the surface”; it would give local businesses and shops the right to refuse cash payments and instead insist that customers use “contactless debit cards” or another means of electronic payment. He continues: Officially, the aim is to ease “administrative and financial burdens,” such as the cost of hiring a security service to send cash to the bank, and is part of a program of reforms aimed at boosting growth – there is evidence that high cash usage in an economy acts as a drag. FULL REPORT

 

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Pacific Ocean off California coast turning into desert-like dead zone

Posted: 21 May 2015 07:17 PM PDT

It’s anyone’s guess why temperatures in the Pacific Ocean are heating up off the coast of Southern California. Is a natural El Niño effect occurring, or is there something more sinister happening under the blue ocean waters? Off the coast of California, drastic signs of a rapidly changing Pacific Ocean are cropping up. Warmer currents have forced species of fish away from the coast. A massive fish migration, coupled with typical overfishing, has led to dwindling populations of key species like sardines, oysters, shellfish, scallops and krill.

As the aquatic species move away from the coast in search of a better habitat, the sentinel California sea lion population is suffering. In fact, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reports that more than 3,000 sea lion pups have become stranded in 2015. The Marine Mammal Center is sending out veterinarians to rescue the stranded sea lions so they can be nursed back to health. FULL REPORT

 

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US Pressing Israel to Lose Its Nukes

Posted: 21 May 2015 07:06 PM PDT

Assistant US Secretary of State for International Security and Nonproliferation, Thomas Countryman, recently visited Israel and held talks with senior Foreign Ministry officials, about the possibility of making the Middle East nuclear-free. Washington seeks to advance the idea after reaching agreement with Russia about the matter.

The State Department confirmed Countryman’s visit and sources in the US Administration said that Israeli agreement to the idea would be a catalyst for bringing additional countries into discussions on the matter. The Americans have been attempting to convene an international conference on the subject for some time, without success. Secretary of State John Kerry spoke about the idea with pessimism, and said it was “a very tough challenge.” FULL REPORT

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Century After Welsh Revival, Students Vote Against Word of God

Posted: 21 May 2015 11:51 AM PDT

Students at a Welsh university have voted to remove thousands of Bibles from halls of residence, in a move being described as “illiberal and intolerant.” A motion passed at an Aberystwyth University Students’ Union meeting called for an end to the tradition of having Gideon Bibles in students’ bedrooms, branding it “inappropriate in a multicultural university.”

Those behind the motion are pressing for the Bibles to be removed by the end of the academic year and have proposed that students could instead request a religious text if they want one. University officials will now decide whether or not to accept the motion. Aberystwyth University alumnus and Group Chief Executive of Bible Society James Catford said when the proposal was first put forward, that he disagreed with the idea. Responding to claims that the Bible ban is in the name of multiculturalism, he said: “The answer to a diverse and multicultural society is not to remove all traces of diversity. That seems illiberal and intolerant.” FULL REPORT

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How Franklin Graham Is Praying for the Supreme Court

Posted: 21 May 2015 11:45 AM PDT

While Americans wait and watch for the Supreme Court’s verdict on same-sex marriage, Franklin Graham is doing more than waiting and watching—he’s praying. The evangelist has been offering assessments of various justices stances and how to pray for each of them as they deliberate. “Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor was born to a family of immigrants and grew up in public housing in the Bronx. She is a great example of someone who reached the American Dream through hard work and determination. Unfortunately, she is also an example of someone who seems to be very misguided on the issue of same-sex marriage,” Graham says.

“She voted to strike down the federal Defense of Marriage Act in 2014, and homosexual advocates consider her an ally in their fight to make same-sex marriage the law of the land. Let’s pray for Justice Sotomayor to have the wisdom to know that as a society we cannot survive if we turn our back on God’s standards and His definition of marriage.” Graham also points to Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan. Last year, she officiated at a same-sex wedding for her former law clerk. In 2013, Kagan—who was appointed in 2010 by President Obama—also voted to strike down the federal Defense of Marriage Act, which stated that marriage is between one man and one woman. FULL REPORT

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‘Father’ to marry ‘son,’ with court’s blessing!

Posted: 21 May 2015 11:39 AM PDT

The Pandora’s box of same-sex marriage has just released a new pairing unimaginable a few short years ago. Norman MacArthur and Bill Novak, father and son, though not biologically, will soon be husband and … whatever, reports the Patch of Bucks County, Pennsylvania. The pair, both in their 70s, have been together for 50 years and registered in New York City as domestic partners in 1994. But when they moved to Pennsylvania, they discovered their domestic partnership wasn’t recognized, and legalized same-sex marriage was nowhere on the horizon.

Needing to take care of estate-planning issues, the pair pursued a novel legal approach. Novak adopted MacArthur in 2000. The fact their parents were deceased removed any legal objection. “It was the only legal method we could use in Pennsylvania to give underpinning to our relationship,” MacArthur said. When the United States District Court declared unconstitutional Pennsylvania’s marriage laws prohibiting same-sex marriage unconstitutional in 2014, Novak and MacArthur wanted to tie the knot in marriage, but their earlier legal gambit now became an obstacle. Pennsylvania law doesn’t permit marriage between parents and children. FULL REPORT

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ISIS Approaches Israel

Posted: 21 May 2015 11:35 AM PDT

Islamic State loyalists in Syria have made attempts in recent weeks to expand the extremist group’s territory near the border with Israel, but have been twice thwarted by Syrian rebels along the Golan Heights. Israel has not yet responded to the incidents, even as mortar shells from the battles with ISIS fighters landed across the border into Israeli territory, Israeli news site Ynetnews said. In the past, Israel has increased its forces in the Golan Heights near the Syrian border when shells fired by the Syrian army spilled over into Israeli territory, the Jerusalem Post said. However, Israel has remained quiet during the past two weeks as rebel fighters from Syria repelled militants loyal to the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS or ISIL.

The ISIS-loyalists have so far failed to gain foothold on the Golan Heights border, which would allow the Islamic State to set up a base for operations against Israel, Ynetnews said. Their attacks have been thwarted by the Free Syrian Army, which reportedly receives Israeli humanitarian aid, in cooperation with the Nusra Front, a Sunni Muslim branch of al Qaeda operating in Syria and Lebanon. Israel views al Qaeda-affiliated groups as enemies but is far more hostile with Iran and its allies. Earlier this year, Israel opened its borders with Syria to provide medical treatment to the Nusra Front and al Qaeda fighters wounded along the Golan Heights, the Wall Street Journal said. FULL REPORT

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What Is Causing The Strange Trumpet Sounds In The Sky All Over The World?

Strange Sounds In The Sky - Public DomainAll over the globe, people are recording extremely loud sounds coming from the sky.  In many instances, these ominous noises sound like someone is blowing a trumpet.  So what are we supposed to make of these “apocalyptic” sounds?  Should we be concerned?  Well, what we do know is that this is truly a global phenomenon.  In addition to being heard at locations all over the United States and Canada, these sounds have also been recorded in Germany, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Sweden, England, Costa Rica, Ukraine and France.  If you go to YouTube and type in “strange sounds”, you will literally get hundreds of results from all over the planet.  Of course there are many scientists that insist that there must be a “rational explanation” for these strange sounds.  Some theories have suggested fracking, “rock bursts”, venting of high-pressure gas, atmospheric pressure or the natural “background noise” of our planet as the causes of these sounds, but so far none of those theories have been proven.  But two things seem certain – these noises sure are creepy, and they just keep on happening. (Read More…)


It Is Mathematically Impossible To Pay Off All Of Our Debt

Money - Public DomainDid you know that if you took every single penny away from everyone in the United States that it still would not be enough to pay off the national debt?  Today, the debt of the federal government exceeds $145,000 per household, and it is getting worse with each passing year.  Many believe that if we paid it off a little bit at a time that we could eventually pay it all off, but as you will see below that isn’t going to work either.  It has been projected that “mandatory” federal spending on programs such as Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare plus interest on the national debt will exceed total federal revenue by the year 2025.  That is before a single dollar is spent on the U.S. military, homeland security, paying federal workers or building any roads and bridges.  So no, we aren’t going to be “paying down” our debt any time in the foreseeable future.  And of course it isn’t just our 18 trillion dollar national debt that we need to be concerned about.  Overall, Americans are a total of 58 trillion dollars in debt.  35 years ago, that number was sitting at just 4.3 trillion dollars.  There is no way in the world that all of that debt can ever be repaid.  The only thing that we can hope for now is for this debt bubble to last for as long as possible before it finally explodes. (Read More….)


Christian Headlines Daily – Friday, May 22, 2015

http://www.christianheadlines.com/

Top Headlines

Castro Regime Heightens Christian Persecution in Eastern Cuba

Franklin Graham’s Facebook Prayers Target Supreme Court Justices on Gay Marriage

One Year after Meriam Ibrahim’s Release, Two Christians Face Possible Death Penalty in Sudan

Woman Sues New Jersey for Rejecting ‘8THEIST’ License Plate but Accepting ‘BAPTIST’

ISIS Controlling 50 Percent of Syria after Palmyra Takeover

Mother Teresa to be Canonized as Early as Next Year

Ireland’s Gay Marriage Referendum a Sign of Roman Catholic Decline

South Carolina Judge Partially Upholds Christian Prayers at School Graduation

PCUSA Loses Membership after Embracing Gay Marriage

Boehner Rips VA for Firing Almost Nobody, Year after Shinseki Resignation

Opinion

David Letterman and the Death of the Talk Show

5 Myths About Christian Persecution

Should Christians Prepare for a ‘Dark Age’ in the Church?

Good News in Las Vegas, Iraq and Waco

Philosophers Accuse Intact Families of Unfair Advantage


Hate the Sin, Love the Sinner?


“My Last Day” — the Jesus Anime

9 powerful minutes of animation that begins with a thief behind bars watching the scourging of Jesus, and it ends with the thief dying next to Jesus, and waking to see Him in a beautiful place.

The dying thief: What was so great about his faith?

There are many acts of extraordinary faith in the Bible. The one that has impressed me the most concerns the dying thief on the cross. We could take the approach that he had nothing to lose, so he decided to cast his lot with Jesus. But this makes absolutely no sense of the text and the context.
In this conversion we have a specific fulfillment of Christ’s first words on the cross. No sooner had Christ spoken the words, “Father, forgive them,” had the Father answered that prayer by turning a once-reviling criminal into a Christ-glorifying saint. While the soon-to-be converted criminal was not directly responsible for Christ’s death, he nevertheless joined with those who were and was thus indirectly addressed when Christ asked for God to forgive “them.”
Christ, the sinless one, was numbered with or counted among the transgressors (Isa. 53:12; Luke 22:37), all of whom have a bigger problem than the day-to-day sins they commit. They hate Christ, the God-man. Anyone who has a master other than the Lord Jesus hates him (Lk. 16:13; Gal. 4:8). That these two criminals loathed him is clearly manifested during the crucifixion: “And the robbers who were crucified with him also reviled him in the same way” (Matt. 27:44).
When the criminal who was converted was doing his worst against Christ, Christ was doing his best for this criminal.
The conversion of the one criminal was most extraordinary and testifies to the power of Christ’s prayer and the grace of God. Why?
This criminal’s faith did not come at a time such as when Christ turned water into wine; or performed miracles, such as walking on water, opening the eyes of a blind man, or raising Lazarus from the dead. No! The criminal believed on the Messiah while he was hanging as one cursed upon a tree. The criminal trusted in and boldly defended the one whose disciples had abandoned him. Jesus was at his lowest when this criminal asked to be remembered in Christ’s kingdom.
When he was on the cross, did anyone publicly cry out, as John the Baptist did, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (Jn. 1:29)? But this is essentially what the dying thief did. Little wonder, then, that Christ should promise him a place in his kingdom: “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise” (Lk. 23:43).
The criminal acknowledged he was guilty; he acknowledged that Christ was not (“this man has done nothing wrong”); he feared God; but, and here is the key: the criminal did not merely want to be in a better place. He wanted to be with Christ in a better place: “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom” (Lk. 23:42). The criminal believed “against all hope”.
Heaven is a better place because that is where Christ is. Everyone wants to go to heaven, but not everyone wants to go to Christ’s heaven. Not so with this criminal: he saw, with his eyes, Christ at his worst; but with the eyes of faith, he believed that Christ would soon be at his best, and so put his faith in a dying king.
Christ is always – always! – willing to save even the most miserable of sinners. A recognition of guilt (Lk. 23:40) and a confidence in him and not ourselves (Lk. 23:42) will always lead to the most assuring truth a sinner can receive: the Savior welcomes such into his paradise!
“One is saved, and we may not despair; the other is lost, and we may not presume.” Spurgeon
Source


Remember the thief.

It can be a difficult situation if someone you are witnessing to asks about the fate of a loved one who died and was not a Christian. Simply say, “Only God knows the eternal destiny of the person, and the Scriptures assure us that He will do what is right. So we can take consolation from that.” Some may be tempted to say that the loved one went to hell, but the truth is that we don’t know what happened minutes before their death. Remember the thief on the cross.


Our Time is Short

Read: Recommitting Your Life To God and Jesus Christ – Restoration and Forgiveness With God and Jesus Christ (Updated Version)


Ready to start your new life with God?

Who do you think that I am?

With that brief question Jesus Christ confronted His followers with the most important issue they would ever face. He had spent much time with them and made some bold claims about His identity and authority. Now the time had come for them either to believe or deny His teachings.

Who do you say Jesus is? Your response to Him will determine not only your values and lifestyle, but your eternal destiny as well.

Consider what the Bible says about Him: Read more


Look to Jesus
Have you ever felt a little lost and wished there was a quick-start guide to your relationship with God? This is it!

30 Day Next Steps
John Beckett, a leading Christian businessman, has written a series to read over 30 days for new believers.

New Believers Guide
The New Believer’s Guide is a series of articles designed to show you how to walk in the new life Christ has given you— a life of faith and freedom.

Jesus Booklet
Jesus is the Savior of the world. Discover who Jesus is today in this series.

About Christianity
Know Jesus Christ and your life will be transformed


Truth2Freedom Blog Disclaimer

This post was originally posted on:

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(Alternative News, Apologetics, Current Events, Commentary, Opinion, Theology, Discernment Blog, Devotionals, Christian Internet Evangelism & Missions Activist). “A simple layman armed with Scripture is to be believed above a pope or a council without it…” – Martin Luther

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May 22, 2015 Truth2Freedom Daily Christian Blog/Article Collection

May 18 Quotes


The Monstrous Beast of Pride and the Saving Power of the Cross

Pride is a most deadly spiritual sin, and humility is a most under-valued and yet essential virtue. I was going to say “especially in our contemporary culture,” but I’m not sure that’s true. Human beings have always been tripped up, led astray, enslaved and undone by excessive pride. What makes pride so bad? Think about it –

Read more


The Predominant View of “The Least of These” in Church History

The amount of evidence that Gray covers is vast and can hardly be reproduced in a single blog post. But we can summarize his findings with respect to the narrow view of “the least of these.” He concludes that if one sets aside references to the “least of these” that are unspecified, “then it is clear that the narrow interpretation of ‘the least’ is the predominant viewpoint throughout the centuries” (p. 349). The narrow view is held 68% of the time in Middle Ages and 74% of the time in the Renaissance/Reformation (pp. 349-50).

Read more


Is It HOW We Read the Bible or IF We Read the Bible?

What all of these arguments, promoted by the most prominent voices of progressive Christianity, have in common is that they count on their audience members being too unfamiliar with Scripture to even realize how such arguments totally ignore or misrepresent the most relevant biblical passages. The politically incorrect fact of the matter is that for most folk in “progressive Christian” circles, this appears to be a safe assumption.

Read more


The Gathering Storm: The Eclipse of Religious Liberty and the Threat of a New Dark Age

Religious liberty is under direct threat. Just days ago the Solicitor General of the United States served notice before the Supreme Court that the liberties of religious institutions will be an open and unavoidable question. Already, religious liberty is threatened by a new moral regime that exalts erotic liberty and personal autonomy and openly argues that religious liberties must give way to the new morality, its redefinition of marriage, and its demand for coercive moral, cultural, and legal sovereignty.

Read more


The Tumult of Her War

This aspect of the Christian life – conflict with the world and being hated by those who are not united to Christ – is not something that we like to reflect upon, but it is a major theme of the New Testament. And, as John Calvin writes, God uses the tribulations of this world to wean us from excessive love of this present life: “Whatever kind of tribulation presses upon us, we must ever look to this end: to accustom ourselves to contempt for the present life and to be aroused thereby to meditate upon the future life” (Calvin’s Institutes, III.9.1).

Read more


What Kind of Pastor Does God Use to Revitalize a Church?

It is unfortunate the amount of dying churches that conclude they need one of two kinds of men to lead them to revitalize their church. Churches first pursue finding the next young, rock-star preacher to be their pastor, banking on his charisma will be what breathes life back into the church. The problem with this approach is not just the limited amount of so called “rock-star pastors” that exist, but that the Bible does not advocate that the men who lead the church must fit that description.

Read more


Five Things Every Christian Should be Doing with God’s Word

Indeed, Jesus embodies all five of these characteristics. He trusted, studied, used, delighted in, and obeyed God’s Word. In fact, he did all these things even more than the first David. While David certainly serves as an example of what to do with God’s word, Jesus is the ultimate example. One greater than David has come. And he loved God’s Word.

Read more


How to Meditate on God’s Word

by Founders Ministries Blog

Meditation is pondering the Word in our hearts, preaching it to our own souls, and personally applying it to our own lives and circumstances. It is how we sanctify our thinking and bring it into submission to Christ—taking every thought captive

READ FULL ARTICLE >>


3 Small Group Myths that Need to Go Away

by Philip Nation

Small groups are an essential part of church life. It goes by a multitude of names–Life Groups, home groups, Sunday school, Bible fellowships, and the list goes on. When a ministry is so important, for some reason, myths begin to swirl around it. Here are three of the myths about small groups.

READ FULL ARTICLE


Is Mental Illness Actually Biblical?

by Stephen Altrogge

I believe that treating mental illness as only (or even primarily) a spiritual problem is both profoundly unbiblical and incredibly hurtful to those who struggle with mental illness.

READ FULL ARTICLE


How to Find God’s Perspective on Cancer

by Association of Biblical Counselors

Cancer patients need one additional perspective, which a biblical counselor is well-suited to provide. This perspective is God’s perspective.

READ FULL ARTICLE


5 Common Questions Every Pastor Should Ask a Prospective Church Member

by Brian Croft

The most important part of the membership process we have at our church is the one-on-one meeting I have with prospective members.

READ FULL ARTICLE


Is the Christian Church in America Losing Its Influence?

Is the Christian Church in America losing its identity and influence? Or simple learning to better relate to the secular world around us? Jesus commanded us to reach out into the sinful world and share the good news of the gospel of salvation. But He also warned us to not conform to the deception and […]

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Christians need to face the bad news about Christianity

Backsliders, fallen away and nominal Christians seem to be the new norm these days. Even Russell Moore, who recently met with the Pope, is opining that Christianity isn’t normal any more, as you’ll see in the following article. We’re not siding with the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission head, so you’ll also […]

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Head for the Hills?

The post-Christian culture that Francis Schaeffer and Chuck Colson foretold is now reality. So what do we do? We’ll discuss one leader’s ideas.
Listen Now | Download


What about the person without the Bible?

What about the person without the Bible? Will they be held accountable for breaking God’s Law? Or Face God’s judgment? According to Scripture, “the work of the Law is written on their hearts.” And the Bible even gives multiple examples of God judging peoples and nations who have never heard God’s Law.


Deceitful Workmen

I have recently encountered not a small number of professing “Christians” online who are “offended” when certain lifestyles are referred to as sinful, even though the Bible is not unclear about it.


Time to Disband the Boy Scouts?

I suppose we should have seen this coming. Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates—after having helmed the forced recognition of homosexual men and women into the U.S.


The Heavenly Citizen’s Prospect

For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself.
– Philippians 3:20–21 –

In a word, the heavenly citizen’s prospect is glorification. Glorification is that final stage in the process of redemption when Christ (a) raises the bodies of all believers from the dead and reunites those bodies with their souls; and (b) instantly changes the bodies of believers alive at His coming into perfect, sin-free bodies, even like His own when He was resurrected.

Glorification

The Body of Our Humiliation

Earlier translations of this verse spoke of “our vile body” (KJV) or “the body of our humiliation” (ASV). But that could send the wrong message. Paul doesn’t intend to demean the body in any way, as if the physical body was evil in itself. That was the teaching of certain pagan religious philosophers of the day, but not of biblical Christianity. Remember, Adam and Eve were created perfectly by God, in His image, as a body-and-soul entity.

And so “the body of our humiliation” has nothing to do with some supposed inherent sinfulness of the body. Rather, it refers to our bodies, which are presently marked by the humiliation caused by sin—always characterized by weakness, by physical decay, by indignity, sickness and suffering, and of course the ultimate humiliation of death. And the body, though not inherently sinful in itself, is too often the instrument of our sinful acts—the vehicle through which we gratify our sinful desires. Knowing that that which should be set apart and consecrated as the temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 6:19) is nevertheless presented to sin as an instrument of unrighteousness (Rom 6:13) causes it all the more to be regarded as “the body of our humiliation.” Indeed, in this body we groan (2 Cor 5:2; cf. Rom 8:23), calling out with the Apostle Paul, “Who will save me from the body of this death?” (Rom 7:24).

The answer we receive in this text is: the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ is coming! And He’s not coming to rescue you out of your body, so you can live as a disembodied spirit in some ethereal existence for all eternity. He’s not coming to replace your body, as if He could only redeem part of you. No, He is coming to transform your present, lowly, sin-sick body into conformity with the body of His own glory!

1 Corinthians 15: Our Glorified Bodies

What will these glorified bodies be like? In 1 Corinthians 15, Paul defends the bodily resurrection against those in Corinth who were denying it. Towards the end of the chapter, he gives us insight into the nature of our glorified, resurrection bodies, in contrast with our natural bodies.

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Ireland’s Gay Marriage Referendum a Sign of Roman Catholic Decline

by Marsha West

Berean Research reports:

In Ireland,” says a character in a 1904 George Bernard Shaw play, “the people is the Church, and the Church is the people.”

But not so much anymore.

On Friday (May 22), voters in this once deeply Roman Catholic country will decide whether the country’s constitution should be amended to allow for gay marriage. If the amendment passes, Ireland will become the first country to legalize same-sex civil marriage by popular vote.

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Darkness Covers the Land, but God’s People Say and Do Nothing

by Bill Muehlenberg

OK, headlines are meant to grab your attention, and so the use of hyperbole is common. Well, now that I have your attention, then yes, of course, there are some Christians doing things and saying things during the dark times we find ourselves in. But they are clearly in the minority.

Most of the church is sleeping through its own execution. All around us the world is exploding, and all around us the church is imploding, yet most believers don’t seem to give a rip. And if they do care, they sure don’t seem to be opening their mouths very much.

Everywhere we hear the sound of crickets chirping while things continue to go down the gurgler fact. Even more incredible is the fact that in so much of the world Christians are dying the most horrific deaths, often at the hands of devout Muslims, but most Christians in the West seem not to care in the least. They are dead silent. And that may well be because they are dead – at least spiritually speaking.

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Study of attitudes to same-sex marriage retracted over ‘fake data’

by Marsha West

The study, using gay political canvessers, alleged that a conversation with a gay person could soften attitudes on same-sex marriage. But evidence has has been presented showing the study was a complete fabrication. The Guardian has the details: The senior author of a study claiming to find that a brief, face-to-face conversation with a gay political canvasser had […]

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Boy Scouts of America president says ban on gay leaders unsustainable

by Marsha West

AOL reports that the radical homosexual lobby may finally have their way with the Scouts. According to Zach Wahls, executive director of Scouts for Equality. “We are 180 degrees from where we were a year ago. This is a very, very positive development.” Bible believing Christians vehemently disagree with Mr. Wahls that gay leaders in the Scouts is […]

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No Other Gospel: Satan’s Deception Through False Teachers

Galatians 1:6-10  I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed. For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.

[dropcap]O[/dropcap]ne of my very favorite books in all the Bible is Paul’s epistle to the Galatians.  This letter addresses a problem seen in many churches today of adding man-made requirements to being a Christian and beautifully reveals how free Christianity truly is from external salvific requirements. This is another good book to learn what separates true Christianity from many of the different cults masquerading as a superior Christianity when, in fact, they are not Christian at all.  As John MacArthur points out, Galatians is not a detached theological treatise but a deeply personal letter written from the grieving heart of a godly man for his spiritual children, whose faith and living were being undermined by false teachers.[1. MacArthur, John. “Introduction.” The MacArthur New Testament Commentary: Galatians. Chicago: Moody, 1987. x-xi. Print. ]

The first 12 verses of Galatians 1 include Paul’s introduction and his stern rebuke of the people of Galatia abandoning the true Gospel and being swayed by those false teachers.  Much like today, the false gospel these teachers espoused created a plethora of Jews who made a merely superficial profession of faith but eventually turned back to their works righteous ways.  These folks were what we today would consider false converts and it was they (Judaizers) who arose within the church itself, “speaking twisted things” and trying to “draw away the disciples after them.” (Acts 20:30)  Such is the danger of false conversions and false teachers within the church.

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You Can Trust Your Bible: An Interview with Peter Williams

I recently saw this interesting interview at TGC with my friend Peter Williams. Peter is a biblical scholar and the CEO of Tyndale House in Cambridge, England–a study center for evangelical scholars.


Hearing The Voice Of The Lord

Q&A-chalkboard

Q.  In a recent answer to a question, you discussed a time when you asked God a question about why a situation involving forgiveness turned out the way it did. You wrote that God responded to your question. I assume from spending much time reading the information on your web site that you have these conversations with God frequently. I hear pastors in radio sermons as well as my own pastors talk frequently about hearing from God and that God speaks to their hearts all the time. My question is how does one know when they are hearing from God or receiving answers to questions directed to God? I received Jesus as my Lord and savior many years ago and I read my Bible most days and pray everyday throughout the day as well as continually feel a deep longing to connect with God. I don’t know how to distinguish a word/thought/conversation with God from my own thoughts. How does one develop this talent/ability?

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Acts 2 And The Day Of The Lord

Q&A-chalkboard

Q. I’m a little confused as Acts 2:20 reads “the sun shall be turned into darkness, And the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of the LORD.”

But Revelation 6:12 reads, ” I watched as he opened the sixth seal. There was a great earthquake. The sun turned black like sackcloth made of goat hair, the whole moon turned blood red.”

Does this mean the day of the Lord only starts after the sixth seal is opened? That doesn’t fit with anything I believe but I can’t seem to get over it. Thanks in advance for your answer. You make the end times understandable but this little thing has thrown me!

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The Sabbath Rest

Q&A-chalkboard

Q. Chapter 4 of Hebrews speaks of entering into the Sabbath rest. I am fairly certain that this is not referring to the tradition Sabbath; i.e., 7th day of the week. Is this referring to the New Covenant (Jesus’ redemptive act on the Cross)? Or is there something else going on here?

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Hate the Sin, Love the Sinner?


“My Last Day” — the Jesus Anime

9 powerful minutes of animation that begins with a thief behind bars watching the scourging of Jesus, and it ends with the thief dying next to Jesus, and waking to see Him in a beautiful place.

The dying thief: What was so great about his faith?

There are many acts of extraordinary faith in the Bible. The one that has impressed me the most concerns the dying thief on the cross. We could take the approach that he had nothing to lose, so he decided to cast his lot with Jesus. But this makes absolutely no sense of the text and the context.
In this conversion we have a specific fulfillment of Christ’s first words on the cross. No sooner had Christ spoken the words, “Father, forgive them,” had the Father answered that prayer by turning a once-reviling criminal into a Christ-glorifying saint. While the soon-to-be converted criminal was not directly responsible for Christ’s death, he nevertheless joined with those who were and was thus indirectly addressed when Christ asked for God to forgive “them.”
Christ, the sinless one, was numbered with or counted among the transgressors (Isa. 53:12; Luke 22:37), all of whom have a bigger problem than the day-to-day sins they commit. They hate Christ, the God-man. Anyone who has a master other than the Lord Jesus hates him (Lk. 16:13; Gal. 4:8). That these two criminals loathed him is clearly manifested during the crucifixion: “And the robbers who were crucified with him also reviled him in the same way” (Matt. 27:44).
When the criminal who was converted was doing his worst against Christ, Christ was doing his best for this criminal.
The conversion of the one criminal was most extraordinary and testifies to the power of Christ’s prayer and the grace of God. Why?
This criminal’s faith did not come at a time such as when Christ turned water into wine; or performed miracles, such as walking on water, opening the eyes of a blind man, or raising Lazarus from the dead. No! The criminal believed on the Messiah while he was hanging as one cursed upon a tree. The criminal trusted in and boldly defended the one whose disciples had abandoned him. Jesus was at his lowest when this criminal asked to be remembered in Christ’s kingdom.
When he was on the cross, did anyone publicly cry out, as John the Baptist did, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (Jn. 1:29)? But this is essentially what the dying thief did. Little wonder, then, that Christ should promise him a place in his kingdom: “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise” (Lk. 23:43).
The criminal acknowledged he was guilty; he acknowledged that Christ was not (“this man has done nothing wrong”); he feared God; but, and here is the key: the criminal did not merely want to be in a better place. He wanted to be with Christ in a better place: “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom” (Lk. 23:42). The criminal believed “against all hope”.
Heaven is a better place because that is where Christ is. Everyone wants to go to heaven, but not everyone wants to go to Christ’s heaven. Not so with this criminal: he saw, with his eyes, Christ at his worst; but with the eyes of faith, he believed that Christ would soon be at his best, and so put his faith in a dying king.
Christ is always – always! – willing to save even the most miserable of sinners. A recognition of guilt (Lk. 23:40) and a confidence in him and not ourselves (Lk. 23:42) will always lead to the most assuring truth a sinner can receive: the Savior welcomes such into his paradise!
“One is saved, and we may not despair; the other is lost, and we may not presume.” Spurgeon
Source


Remember the thief.

It can be a difficult situation if someone you are witnessing to asks about the fate of a loved one who died and was not a Christian. Simply say, “Only God knows the eternal destiny of the person, and the Scriptures assure us that He will do what is right. So we can take consolation from that.” Some may be tempted to say that the loved one went to hell, but the truth is that we don’t know what happened minutes before their death. Remember the thief on the cross.


Our Time is Short

Read: Recommitting Your Life To God and Jesus Christ – Restoration and Forgiveness With God and Jesus Christ (Updated Version)


Ready to start your new life with God?

Who do you think that I am?

With that brief question Jesus Christ confronted His followers with the most important issue they would ever face. He had spent much time with them and made some bold claims about His identity and authority. Now the time had come for them either to believe or deny His teachings.

Who do you say Jesus is? Your response to Him will determine not only your values and lifestyle, but your eternal destiny as well.

Consider what the Bible says about Him: Read more


Look to Jesus
Have you ever felt a little lost and wished there was a quick-start guide to your relationship with God? This is it!

30 Day Next Steps
John Beckett, a leading Christian businessman, has written a series to read over 30 days for new believers.

New Believers Guide
The New Believer’s Guide is a series of articles designed to show you how to walk in the new life Christ has given you— a life of faith and freedom.

Jesus Booklet
Jesus is the Savior of the world. Discover who Jesus is today in this series.

About Christianity
Know Jesus Christ and your life will be transformed


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Alexander: The Wounded Warrior Project and other veteran support groups

Alexander’s Column

Wounded Warrior Warning

Emotional Appeals? Caveat Emptor

By Mark Alexander · May 20, 2015

“Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclination, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.” —John Adams (1770)

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It appears that some Leftmedia talkingheads have finally decided to ask some tough questions about the corrupt practices of the Clintons, Bill and Demo presidential hopeful Hillary, and their flush Clinton Family Foundation.

Charity Watch has the CFF on its “watch list,” and Bill Allison, senior fellow at the non-partisan Sunlight Foundation, a government watchdog group, has likened the CFF to a “slush fund” for the Clintons. And for good reason: The Clintons took in more than $140 million in donations in 2013, but spent a comparatively paltry $9 million on direct aid.

Seeing the corrupt Clinton Machine subjected to some scrutiny by the media is a welcome sight indeed, but it’s also a temporary one. It won’t be long before the Clintons’ media sycophants have circled the wagons around their Demo darlings and once again trained their guns on Republican presidential hopefuls.

But I digress…

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This week, midway between Armed Forces Day and Memorial Day, a Marine officer requested I ask some tough questions about another foundation amid charges of questionable practices.

He forwarded me an email assailing the integrity of the Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) — a Florida-based organization that spends so much of its revenue on advertising that it is now the most widely recognized veteran support organization.

My Marine colleague asked that we investigate the email claims, and we did.

On behalf of our readers, including tens of thousands of military Patriots and their families who have or are considering financially supporting WWP, here is what we’ve determined concerning the questions raised by a widely circulated email.

That email makes claims about exorbitant salaries being paid to WWP executives and then referenced a website “that exposed exactly how the charity spends the money it receives from patriotic Americans.” It then concludes, “WWP might as well be run by the Mafia,” and references an article at an online site called “Veterans Today” as the source.

Notably, that article has now been removed, and for the record, Veterans Today is a purveyor of mindless “conspiracy theories” and borderline neo-Nazi propaganda. Thus, neither the original email nor its “source” is credible.

That errant email notwithstanding, I have noted the enormous amount of donor dollars WWP spends asking for more donor dollars, and so further reviewed WWP’s history and financial statements.

For background, the WWP was founded in 2003 by John Melia, who himself suffered severe injuries in a 1992 Somalia helicopter crash. In 2005, the United Spinal Association granted $2.7 million to WWP to “develop into a stand-alone charity with its own identity and programs.” WWP became an independent charitable organization shortly thereafter, certified by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit.

WWP’s mission is to “honor and empower Wounded Warriors” and to “foster the most successful, well-adjusted generation of wounded service members in our nation’s history.” Its stated objective is to “raise awareness and enlist the public’s aid for the needs of injured service members, help injured service members aid and assist each other and provide unique, direct programs and services to meet the needs of injured service members.”

Fact is, WWP makes great strides to achieve its mission — all well and good. But to determine the degree to which WWP’s revenues support that mission, our team reviewed the two most recent audited financial statements available, 2012 and 2013, as well as the WWP’s marketing material and website.

In 2013, WWP took in almost $305 million in donations and claimed service to about 35,000 registered alumni and 4,000 others defined as “family or caregivers of a registered alumni.” Those donations were up from $200 million in 2012, due primarily to massive advertising expenditures.

With its proceeds, WWP funds about 15 programs and writes grants to other veteran support groups. But what we found most alarming is the amount of funding paid for advertising and administration.

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Many veteran support organizations are run effectively by volunteers — but not WWP.

According to Charity Navigator, the nation’s largest oversight and review organization for charitable groups, WWP allocates about 55% of its revenue to program expenses while the remaining 45% is used for fundraising, salaries, consulting, meetings, events and travel.

WWP received a “D” rating from the American Institute of Philanthropy and only a C+ by Charity Watch. Indeed, WWP ranks substantially below other national veteran support groups like Fisher House Foundation, Operation Homefront and the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors.

WWP’s CEO Steven Nardizzi, a lawyer who now receives a $375,000 salary, served up a legalese rebuttal to the evaluations from Charity Watch and Charity Navigator, insisting in The Chronicle of Philanthropy that those rating organizations were “horribly ineffective and misinformed.”

However, facts are stubborn things, and an organization’s audited financial statements can certainly expose a lot of facts.

While WWP expenditures appear to qualify under the legal parameters for 501(c)(3) nonprofits, only about 55 cents of every dollar WWP takes in goes to direct benefits for a wounded warrior. We have no objection to WWP’s considerable efforts to raise funds, but it should raise questions when such a large percentage of donations fail to make it to our wounded warriors.

My recommendation?

The growth of veteran support organizations since 2001, some of them worthy of your investment, is as viral as those surprise military homecoming videos — and most of those organizations are appealing to similar sentiments.

Of course, no American Patriot would oppose supporting veterans, particularly those who have suffered severe injuries. I know more than a few of them, and last year The Patriot Post helped build a house to accommodate the needs of a young soldier who lost both legs to an IED in Afghanistan.

But, when organizations pitch strong sentimental appeals asking for your money, whether those appeals be for starving children in Africa or disabled Veterans at home, caveat emptor.

When investing your dollars to support veterans, seek out good third-party evaluations to determine how much of those dollars will actually support that mission, and choose one where at least 75% of revenues do just that.

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Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis

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Those Dastardly Young People Leaving Church

hipandthigh

hipsterThe last few years have seen a crush of hand-wringing, panicked stricken articles and books bemoaning how today’s youth are abandoning traditional churches and Christianity altogether once they reach college age.

The authors of these garment rending laments are often self-appointed pop cultural analysts who believe they are on the front lines of the modern culture war assailing Christians everywhere. They are anyone from parachurch apologists to popular youth personalities, and they are sounding the alarm about the exodus of young people from Christianity who were raised in loving Christian homes whose parents took them to church regularly, taught them the Bible, and in many cases enrolled them in Christian schools or homeschooled them.

Once they leave home for the first time, those fresh young people are genuinely exposed to the “real world” and their naivete is dashed up against the rocks of secularism. They come to recognize the folly of religious…

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Ted Cruz shows how to answer questions on social issues from leftist reporter

WINTERY KNIGHT

This is from Real Clear Politics.

Transcript:

SEN. TED CRUZ: Let me ask a question: Is there something about the left, and I am going to put the media in this category, that is obsessed with sex? Why is it the only question you want to ask concerns homosexuals? Okay, you can ask those questions over and over and over again. I recognize that you’re reading questions from MSNBC…

[…]You’re wincing. You don’t want to talk about foreign policy. I recognize you want to ask another question about gay rights. Well, you know. ISIS is executing homosexuals. You want to talk about gay rights? This week was a very bad week for gay rights because the expansion of ISIS, the expansion of radical, theocratic, Islamic zealots that crucify Christians, that behead children and that murder homosexuals. That ought to be concerning you far more than asking six questions all…

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The Gospel Is For Josh Duggar Too

Polemics Report

The news of Josh Duggar’s past has gone viral. Josh was the subject of a police investigation for allegedly sexually molesting five girls, some of whom are his sisters. Josh in his own words states,”Twelve years ago, as a young teenager, I acted inexcusably for which I am extremely sorry and deeply regret. I hurt others, including my family and close friends, I confessed this to my parents who took several steps to help me address the situation. We spoke with the authorities where I confessed my wrongdoing, and my parents arranged for me and those affected by my actions to receive counseling. I understood that if I continued down this wrong road that I would end up ruining my life.” Sadly many seem to be missing the Gospel in this story. Josh confessed his sins to his parent’s and the authorities. He submitted himself to the God-ordained authority figures…

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Tongues, Healing and Prophecy Notes – Part 3

Watch Your Life and Doctrine Closely...

Today I’m going to be posting up the the third part of my notes from the third talk I gave at the Last Days Bible Conference.  That talk was about a biblical understanding of tongues, healing and prophecy.  The previous post I put up contained my notes about healing, and the one before that contained my notes about tongues..  Today, I’m going to be posting the notes about prophecy.

If I had a dime for every "prophet" I've known who got this fortune cookie from the Holy Spirit... I’m talking about Biblical prophets, not the fortune cookie rip-offs that are running around these days…

As in the previous two posts, my main objective in addressing the subject was to try to give, from the Bible, a definition of tongues, healing and prophecy as practice by Christ, the prophets and apostles.  Though there are plenty of questions regarding prophecy that come up in contemporary evangelicalism (though people don’t always realized that the question they’re asking is about prophecy), I…

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I felt the necessity to write to you appealing that you contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all handed down to the saints

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

3 Beloved, while I was making every effort to write you about our common salvation, I felt the necessity to write to you appealing that you contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all handed down to the saints. 4 For certain persons have crept in unnoticed, those who were long beforehand marked out for this condemnation, ungodly persons who turn the grace of our God into licentiousness and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. (Jude 1:3-4 NASB)

Carefully read the passage above my brethren. The writer of the Epistle of Jude is the brother of James, the well-known leader of the Jerusalem church (Acts 12:17; 15:13; 21;18; Galatians 2:9) and, therefore, the half-brother of our Lord Jesus Christ. In v3 we read that Jude had intended to write a letter on salvation as the common blessing enjoyed by all true believers. This intent…

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