Daily Archives: October 1, 2015

Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

42 “Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming. (Matthew 24:42 NASB)

I know that I am a finite person who is incapable of knowing everything. I know this very well. I also know that it is impossible for any finite individual to possess the knowledge with certainty of future events. I am fully aware of this so I am not making predictions here or saying that I know for certain that eschatological events are going to happen any day now. No, I am not saying that. No, but what I am saying, and have been saying for quite some time, is that unless God grants us a revival, the Church will continue with its tailspin into apostasy and we will be in for a very rough period of spiritual darkness and possible persecution. The move from Christian orthodoxy into…

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Putin orders Russian military forces into combat in Syria, just miles from northern border of Israel. Russian forces working closely with Iran. Here’s the latest.

Joel C. Rosenberg's Blog

(photo credit: CNN) (photo credit: CNN)

(Rochester, New York) — In the Kremlin’s biggest military operation in the Middle East since 1941, Russian air and ground forces are now engaged in combat in Syria. And they are now operating just miles from the northern mountains of Israel.

The Kremlin’s stated objective is to defeat ISIS and protect the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, a long-time Russian ally in the Middle East. But Vladimir Putin’s aggressive moves have broader, more ominous implications.

  1. Putin is a Czar, an imperialist, consumed with “Mother Russia’s” need to expand it’s borders and influence — and he is now on the move to seize control of the dynamic in the epicenter.
  2. Putin specifically wants to replace the United States as the dominant military and political force in the Near East. It’s been firm, bipartisan U.S. foreign policy since World War II to keep the Russian military out of the Middle East…

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Why Do So Many People Misunderstand the Word “Faith”

THINKAPOLOGETICS.COM

Anyone who has been engaged in talking to people in our culture about the Christian worldview knows that many people misunderstand the word “faith.” I could go ahead and blame the media, pop culture, and the university for this widespread problem. But the reality is that it is incumbent upon pastors, apologists, and ministry leaders to teach and instruct Christians about the proper definition of the word “faith.” Yes, many Christians don’t know how to explain the word “faith.”

Some theologians and apologists have suggestedn that it might be a good idea to substitute the word “trust” in place of the word “faith.” This has some merit to it. Joseph Thayer says the following:

“To believe” means to think to be true; to be persuaded of; to credit, [to] place confidence in. [And in] a moral and religious reference, pisteuein [from pisteuo] is used in the N.T. of a conviction…

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Calvin on the (Im)Purity of the Church

The Reformed Reader

I appreciate the following comments John Calvin made when discussing Galatians 1:2b.  They go hand in hand with WCF 25.4: “Particular churches… are more or less pure, according as the doctrine of the gospel is taught and embraced, ordinances administered, and public worship performed more or less purely in them.”  Here’s Calvin:

We do not always find in churches such a measure of purity as might be desired. The purest have their blemishes; and some are marked, not by a few spots, but by general deformity. Though the doctrines and practices of any society may not, in all respects, meet our wishes, we must not instantly pronounce its defects to be a sufficient reason for withholding from it the appellation of a Church. Paul manifests here a gentleness of disposition utterly at variance with such a course. Yet our acknowledgment of societies to be churches of Christ must be accompanied…

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October 1, 2015 Christian Briefing Report

September 28 Quotes


How An Affair Really Begins

Through it all, John Owen’s insight remains so crucial: Sin always aims at the uttermost; the smallest sin is but one step to the biggest and most treacherous sin. That decision to neglect the pursuit of your wife, that surrendering of marital intimacy, these were only the first small, sinful steps to the destruction of your marriage.

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Restoring Free Speech On Campus

Backed by a strong commitment to freedom of expression and academic freedom, faculty could challenge one another, their students and the public to consider new possibilities, without fear of reprisal. Students would no longer face punishment for exercising their right to speak out freely about the issues most important to them. Instead of learning that voicing one’s opinions invites silencing, students would be taught that spirited debate is a vital necessity for the advancement of knowledge.

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5 Facts About Planned Parenthood’s Congressional Testimony

Coalfire Systems, a highly accredited forensic analysis and cybersecurity company that does work for Fortune 500 companies, issued a report Monday which found that 10 full-footage videos the Center for Medical Progress recorded while undercover at Planned Parenthood facilities and related locations “are authentic and show no evidence of manipulation or editing.”

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The Trinity Is Not a Contradiction

The formula is not meant to say that essence and person are the same things. Essence refers to the being of God, while person is used here as substance within being. Essence is primary and persona is secondary. Essence is the similarity, while personal is the dissimilarity in the nature of God. He is unified in one essence, but diversified in three personae.

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Springtime for Liberal Christianity

How far to go with them is the question that awaits the pope in Rome this fall, and that hangs over the springtime for liberal Christianity his pontificate has nurtured. How it’s answered, and what follows, will determine whether we’re watching something genuinely new and fresh emerge — or whether, after the cheering ends, the same winter that enveloped liberal Protestantism after the 1960s will claim Franciscan Catholicism as well.

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Cherry-Picking Pope Francis

While papal visits to the United States are increasingly common, what is uncommon is to see political-ideological battle lines drawn around a pope. The tendency this time is especially acute among liberals, who eagerly frame Francis as one of them—a categorization Francis has resisted. “I’m sure that I haven’t said anything more than what’s written in the social doctrine of the Church,” he said as his plane approached U.S. soil.

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Eight Reasons Many Pastors Lack Confidence

They have many “bosses.” Regardless of church polity, many church members think the pastor and church staff work for them. It takes unique leadership skills to deal with this reality.
They did not ask the right questions on the front end. Before they accepted the position, many pastors and staff did not have any idea about the realities of the church they now serve. They thus feel ill equipped to lead in their context.

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Re Membership

Church membership nowadays is falling into disrepute. Understandably so, because both the leaders and the people have lost their bearings of the need to strive for holiness. The church has become more like a social club than a fitness center. Simply having a gym membership does not promote physical fitness, nor does simply being a member of a church promote spiritual fitness.

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How to Draw Close to God When You Feel Lonely

How to Draw Close to God When You Feel Lonely

Posted on October 1, 2015 by Crosswalk

The first step in assuaging loneliness is to recognize that it is a lack of God–by and for whom we were made–that leaves us feeling empty and lacking.

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6 Ways to Serve God in Day-to-Day Life

6 Ways to Serve God in Day-to-Day Life

Posted on October 1, 2015 by Crosswalk

Here are just a few simple ways Christians can grow and practice their faith in an ordinary, day-to-day routine.

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A Prayer for When Things Seem Hopeless & Chaotic

A Prayer for When Things Seem Hopeless & Chaotic

Posted on October 1, 2015 by Crosswalk

Are you unable to see anything but problems, troubles, chaos, messiness? Are you finding it difficult to pray for comfort, perspective, hope and order? Then pray along with these words now!

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The Silent War of the Church

The Silent War of the Church

Posted on October 1, 2015 by Christianity Today

Dr. Peter Lee stops by the blog to reflect on the silent war of the church and the meddling of the evil one.

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3 Verses on Beauty Every Girl Needs to Know

by Bethany Baird

The next time the girl in the mirror forgets how beautiful she is, recite these three power-packed verses.

8 Reasons Why I Didn’t Change My Name (and 6 Reasons I Did)

by Paula Hendricks

There’s power in a name! Here are good (and not so good) reasons to take your future husband’s name.

Why You Should Risk Losing Their Friendship

by Paula Hendricks

Here’s why you should be brave enough to confront that friend.

Freebie Friday! Graffiti: Learning to See the Art in Ourselves

by Erin Davis

Take our body image quiz for your chance to win the true beauty book, “Graffiti: Learning to See the Art in Ourselves.”


The Search for God is Growing-Online

by Lenny Esposito

Last week an interesting article appeared in the New York Times looking at Google searches about God and religion. The article stated that search trends—how people look up things on Google and other search engines—is another piece of evidence showing the slide away from religious belief.
Writer Seth Stephens-Davidowitz offers several examples in the piece:

Despite the rising popularity of Pope Francis, who was elected in 2013, Google searches for churches are 15 percent lower in the first half of this decade than they were during the last half of the previous one. Searches questioning God’s existence are up. Many behaviors that he supposedly abhors have skyrocketed. Porn searches are up 83 percent. For heroin, it’s 32 percent.1

If that wasn’t disheartening enough, Stephens-Davidowitz tried to broaden his examination to include concepts such as how to treat one’s neighbor:

“Love thy neighbor” is the most common search with the word “neighbor” in it, but right behind at No. 2 is “neighbor porn.” The top Google search including the word “God” is “God of War,” a video game, with more than 700,000 searches per year. The No. 1 search that includes “how to” and “Walmart” is “how to steal from Walmart,” beating all questions related to coupons, price-matching or applying for a job.2

What Does It Mean?

As Stephens-Davidowitz notes, one cannot assume too much from the data. People Google things all the time that they may be partly confused on or even things that they do believe, but don’t quite know how to explain. In fact, the article even stipulates that…

The Poached Egg ApologeticsFOLLOW THE LINK BELOW TO READ THE FULL ARTICLE >>>

The Search for God is Growing-Online | Come Reason’s Apologetics Notes


Case-Making 101: Do Worldviews Matter?

by Teri Dugan

“They need to know that everyone embraces one philosophy or another-a worldview that defines his or her conception of the world, of reality, and of human life. These beliefs are woven into movies-often in subtle ways that viewers miss. That is why it’s so important that we teach our kids how to find the worldview message in every film.” -Chuck Colson on Worldview awareness when viewing films.

Chuck Colson has been a strong advocate for understanding Worldviews. Click here: breakpoint.org for Worldview research, commentaries, audio broadcasts, videos and resources by Chuck, Eric Metaxas, John Stonestreet and others.

Click here to check out Brian Godawa’s insightful book called Hollywood Worldviews, Watching Films with Wisdom and Discernment.”

What is a Worldview?

When I look at my life now, compared to 15-20 years ago, I can see how drastically my Worldview has changed. The things that I think are important and that I like to spend my time on today would in no way be a part of my life back then, and visa versa. Why does that happen? I believe that when we decide to walk with Christ our interests, perspectives and attitudes change and we see the world differently. I think that, at least in part, this is what it means to be born again.

We all have a Worldview but many people do not realize it. A Worldview is our set of beliefs and presuppositions. What we believe to be true in the following areas form the foundation of our Worldview:

  • God’s existence
  • Humanity
  • Purpose
  • Duty
  • Truth
  • Society
  • Education
  • Science
  • Aesthetics
  • Destiny

Let’s look at the difference between a Christian Worldview and a secular Worldview…

The Poached Egg ApologeticsFOLLOW THE LINK BELOW TO READ THE FULL ARTICLE >>>

Case-Making 101: Do Worldviews Matter? | Truth, Faith and Reason


One Big Happy Family

Agenda 20/30 builds on Agenda 11, but offers a more comprehensive package of UN expectations for achieving a perfect world, with specific guidelines for exactly how the agenda’s goals will be achieved (lacking in Agenda 21).

More importantly, the expanded agenda has also been fast-tracked. The deadline for the desired transformation of the world has been moved up.

The UN now believes, under this new plan, that the Utopia they envision can be realized in just 15 years. (Hence the name: Agenda 2030.) And it’s nothing if not ambitious:

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It’s Getting Darker – Shine On

“And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we first believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light” (Romans13:11-12).

It’s getting very dark in the world, isn’t it? Even a cursory glance at the daily news headlines paints a dire portrait of a world crashing headlong into a churning chasm of chaos.

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Church of Scotland minister says to teach Jesus died for sins is “ghastly theology”

Berean Research reports:

“Jesus did not die for our sins. No No No No. That is Ghastly theology. Don’t go there.”

This “Pastor” has now joined the ranks of rank heresy shared by Brian Mclaren, Tony Jones, Rob Bell, Jay Bakker and many others who deny propitiation, or atonement for sins that Jesus’ blood covers.

Church of Scotland minister says to teach Jesus died for sins is “ghastly theology”


Should Christians Resist Discrimination and Persecution?

The first century Christian Church faced discrimination and persecution to the point of imprisonment, torture and even death.  Yet God grew His Church through the testimony and teaching of the Apostles and the power of the Holy Spirit.  There was little, if anything, the early church could do to fight discrimination and persecution. Around the […]

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Outspoken American Christians Finding Themselves Placed On Travel Restrictions To Australia and Canada

Christian activists who speak out for Biblical causes may find themselves facing a travel ban to certain countries, including close friends Canada and Australia…………..  Click here for full story


Top U.S. Companies ‘At War With Religious People’

In the 1960s, it was all about skin color. Fifty years later, it’s all about “alternative sexual lifestyles. ”What’s basically happened is that those who have conservative moral values and biblical values, they have become the new Ku Klux Klan”………..  Click here for full story


Video Shows “Prosperity” Preachers Kenneth Copeland, Paula White Laying Hands on Donald Trump for Presidency

Christian News Network has the video:

Donald Trump PrayerWhat do Kenneth Copeland, Paula White, Jan Crouch, Dr. David Jeremiah and Robert Jeffress all have in common? A video has surfaced online showing the men and women, along with others, laying hands on Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump this week and praying for his potential presidency.

According to reports, an estimated three dozen spiritual leaders from across America met with Trump for over two hours at his Trump Towers on Monday, providing advice. Those in attendance included a number of nationally-recognized televangelists and prosperity preachers, including the aforementioned Copeland, Crouch and White, as well as TBN regulars Jentezen Franklin, Steve Munsey and Clarence McClendon.

http://christiannews.net/2015/09/30/video-shows-prosperity-preachers-kenneth-copeland-paula-white-laying-hands-on-donald-trump-for-presidency/


What Every Christian Should Know – Church & Culture Blog

In the late 1980’s, the recently deceased E.D. Hirsch burst onto the cultural scene with his idea of “cultural literacy,” which detailed the importance of having a core of background knowledge for functional literacy and effective national communication.
 
Hirsch ignited a national debate as to the nature of education and the meaning of literacy. Questions swirled around what should form the content of such knowledge, and whether or not education can be reduced to such things.
 
But the central thesis remained: there are certain things we should know.
 
There is a body of knowledge that lends itself to cultural literacy – and even further, Christian literacy.
 
So what are those things?
 
The church has felt the need to identify what should be known from the earliest days. Luke, along with Matthew, Mark and John, felt it critical to pull together the central teachings and life events of Jesus, with John acknowledging, “Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written” (John 21:25, NIV).
 
Beyond the gospels, the importance of a core of knowledge is why God gave us the rest of the Scriptures He did. God boiled the law down to ten commandments; we need to know what they are – along with Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, the seven letters to the seven churches, the wisdom of the Proverbs, the great theological treatise of Romans, the evangelistic thrust of John’s gospel, and everything else within the canon.
 
So the starting point of our education, or commitment to learning, is biblical literacy. This is arguably where the church has done its best, where the spiritual gift of teaching has been most recognized, and where Christians have devoted themselves to most as students.
 
Beyond biblical learning, there are certain events in history to be known, and specifically Christian history. Not simply in regard to dates, names and places, but in terms of significance.
 
So what events – and their significance – should be known, at least in terms of Christian history? Historian Mark Noll has suggested the following twelve as seminal: the fall of Jerusalem (70); the Council of Nicaea (325); the Council of Chalcedon (451); Benedict’s Rule (530); the coronation of Charlemagne (800); the “great schism” between the Eastern and Western church (1054); the Diet of Worms (1521); the English Act of Supremacy (1534); the founding of the Jesuits (1540); the Conversion of the Wesleys (1738); the French Revolution (1789); and the Edinburgh Missionary Conference (1910).
 
Beyond biblical literacy and historical literacy is theological literacy. The Bible gives us God’s revelation; history walks us through how some of the better minds have wrestled with it; theology puts it all together and applies it to the great questions of life and spiritual formation.
 
Theology has traditionally organized itself in ten categories:
1.  Existence, nature and attributes of God
2.  Revelation (the inspiration and authority of Scripture)
3.  Creation and Providence
4.  Doctrine of Humanity
5.  Original and actual sin
6.  Person and work of Christ
7.  Human nature, sin and grace
8.  Person and work of the Holy Spirit
9.  The Church
10.End times
Of course talking about learning and actually getting that education are two different things. Where can you get a course in Christian theology? Where is church history made available? One answer is that churches and the seminaries that serve them must rise to the educational challenge.
 
Fortunately, many are.
 
Churches are increasingly developing a community college “feel” to their educational ministries. Mecklenburg Community Church offers an “Institute” which provides a fresh slate of courses each semester, from Christian Theology to Bible 101, church history to book studies. Such learning opportunities are seen as a vital “third leg” to the learning stool, complimenting the learning coming from weekend services and the learning coming from small group experiences.
 
Regardless of how it is tackled, never before have the habits of the mind mattered more. As Winston Churchill presciently stated in his address to Harvard University in 1943, “The empires of the future will be empires of the mind.” 
 
Alister McGrath, reflecting on Churchill’s address, notes that Churchill’s point was that a great transition was taking place in Western culture with immense implications for all who live in it. The powers of the new world would not be nation-states, as with empires past, but ideologies. It would now be ideas, not nations, which would captivate and conquer in the future. The starting point for the conquest of the world would now be the human mind.
 
Adds John Stott, “We may talk of ‘conquering’ the world for Christ. But what sort of ‘conquest’ do we mean? Not a victory by force of arms…. This is a battle of ideas.”
 
Christian literacy is learning about those ideas.
 
James Emery White
 
 
Sources
 
James Emery White, A Mind for God (InterVarsity Press).
 
E.D. Hirsch, Cultural Literacy: What Every American Needs to Know.
 
Jo H. Lewis and Gordon A. Palmer, What Every Christian Should Know.
 
Mark Noll, Turning Points: Decisive Moments in the History of Christianity.
 
Alister McGrath, The Twilight of Atheism.

The Question Is Not Whether But Why?

Do Reformed Christians ignore the Epistle of James? Particularly, have those who confess the Reformed theology, piety, and practice been guilty of ignoring James’ teaching in 2:14–17. Whether James has been ignored in recent years is a difficult assessment to make. How would one make such a determination? Should we count journal articles, commentaries, blog […]

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A Word to (Some) of My (Fellow) Internet Calvinists

I’ve wrestled with how to say what I’m about to say for close to a year and a half. If there is one group of people who generally fail at self-criticism, it would probably be Reformed folks. Even now, I’m sure some people are preparing their copies of The Institutes of the Christian Religion to launch at me in a manner consistent with causing bodily harm. Please, hear me out first.

First off, this is not an anti-Reformed rant. I am a card-carrying five-point-Calvinist with a great appreciation for historical, confessional Reformed theology. I don’t agree with every tenet of classic Reformed thought (my view of the covenants would be one example – another would be my view of baptism) but I would say it speaks closest to what I believe as a Christian. In short, guys, I’m on your side.

It is exactly because I am on your side, friends and brethren, that I have to call a huddle in session. For folks who profess to believe in such earth-shattering truths, some of the attitudes worry me. Here are a selection…

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Browse Worthy: Adultery Preventatives

With so many moral failings throughout the land, here is some help for securing your heart and relationships.

How an Affair Really Begins – Let Tim Challies help you recognize the signs.

40 Consequences of Adultery – Pray over this list and see if you are still tempted.

Divorce for Pornography? – David Murray raised the question, and a bunch of folks raised some Cain before he closed the comment section. I appreciate his lucidity and candor.

On our latest 3GT, I asked the guys at the 44:20 mark, “Why does your wife trust you?” An interesting conversation followed that gives help in developing marital fidelity.


Love by Faith, Not by Sight

Love by Faith, Not by SightDo you love Jesus? A genuine affection for and devotion to Jesus is a miracle made possible only by God’s work. In this lab, John Piper looks at the affect of the new birth on our heart’s response to Christ. He also asks how the promise of God’s glory in the future affects our lives today.

Watch Now


A La Carte (October 1)

Today’s Kindle deals include: Show Them Jesus by Jack Klumpenhower ($2.99); On Guard by Deepak Reju ($3.99); Reformed Means Missional by Samuel Logan ($2.99); Running on Empty by Barbara Bancroft ($1.99); Multiply by Francis Chan ($4.99); Replant by Darrin Patrick ($1.99); Picture Perfect by Amy Baker ($0.99); Wilberforce by John Pollock ($1.99); Mindscape by Timothy Witmer ($2.99). You will also find that Amazon has a long list of monthly deals for a wide variety of books at $3.99 or less.

This month’s free audiobook from Christian Audio is David Platt’s Follow Me. It is free for the taking. Logos users may want to grab this month’s free Logos book: Luther in English.

Building the 787-9 Dreamliner

Here’s a neat time-lapse video showing how a Boeing 787 is built.

The First Rung of Christianity

In this short video Paul Washer comments briefly but powerfully on the porn plague.

Two Ways to Sing to God

“Psalm 81:1 commands us to ‘sing for joy.’ How does this command play itself out practically in our worlds, particularly when we feel joyless? I want to propose that to fully embrace this command, we must learn to sing in two ways: from affection and for affection.”

The Last Enemy

“Death rises to testify that life is absurd and God, if He exists, is either indifferent or impotent or perhaps both. No wonder the Apostle Paul calls it an enemy. The last enemy.”

Is the Enemy of My Enemy My Friend?

You’ve probably heard the little saying before. Al Mohler thinks it through.

This Day in 1883. A.B. Simpson founded the first school in America to train missionaries. Called the Missionary Training Institute in 1894, its name was changed to Nyack College in 1972. *

Knowing Christ

Knowing Christ is the title of a new book by Mark Jones that was inspired by J.I. Packer’s classic Knowing God. It is on sale at Westminster Books. And you can see Jones and Packer in conversation in this video.

A New Book on the Life and Theology of Martin Luther

New from Cruciform Press (the publishing company I co-founded) is Charles E. Fry’s book, A World Upside Down: Four Essays on the Life and Theology of Martin Luther, with a Foreword from Jerry Bridges.


The Daily Discovery (October 1, 2015)

ARTICLES I LIKE FROM AROUND THE WEB:
(Click title to go to full article)

Michael Horton on Rick Warren, Modern Reformation, and Desiring God – “It is not our usual course at Modern Reformation or White Horse Inn to comment on the invitations of other organizations for their conferences. However, we’re starting to receive questions about our views of Rick Warren’s professed adherence to Reformational theology because an interview in Modern Reformation was posted by Justin Taylor and cited in the comments of his blog as supporters of John Piper wrestle with his recent decision to invite Rick Warren to an upcoming Desiring God conference. So our team felt that some clarification was needed.”

The Imputation: Credit Where Credit Isn’t Due – “The 21st century has been a bastion for imprecise and sloppy language. It’s been a safe harbor for people who stake their worldview on corrupted language. People boast in their refusal to define words. As our culture trends more and more toward this deadly error it becomes all the more important for born again, bible believing evangelical protestant Christians who serve the Lord Jesus and worship Him as Savior to accurately give a defense for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints.”

A Word to (Some) of My (Fellow) Internet Calvinists – “I’ve wrestled with how to say what I’m about to say for close to a year and a half. If there is one group of people who generally fail at self-criticism, it would probably be Reformed folks. Even now, I’m sure some people are preparing their copies of The Institutes of the Christian Religion to launch at me in a manner consistent with causing bodily harm. Please, hear me out first.”

God Is His Own Executioner – “What is involved in the idea of the Father, or Jesus, being a judge? This is something J.I. Packer deals with extraordinarily well in his book Knowing God. Let’s track with him just briefly to see our good God in his function of just judge. Here are 4 characteristics of the judge.”

The Question Is Not Whether But Why? – “Do Reformed Christians ignore the Epistle of James? Particularly, have those who confess the Reformed theology, piety, and practice been guilty of ignoring James’ teaching in 2:14–17. Whether James has been ignored in recent years is a difficult assessment to make. How would one make such a determination? Should we count journal articles, commentaries, blog posts, and Sermon audio posts? Perhaps and it may be that James has been neglected. I have had conversations about this with pastors and elders. Where one is influences how one sees the world.”


SERMON:

A.W. Tozer – The Voice Of The Spirit


VIDEOS:

Gospel Preaching Leads to Gospel Conversation

A False Convert at the FPA Abortuary


“All death can do to the believer is deliver him to Jesus.  It brings us into the eternal presence of our Savior.” – John MacArthur



Christian Headlines Daily – Thursday, October 1, 2015

http://www.christianheadlines.com/

Top Headlines

Egyptian Christian Held in Prison for Reporting Attacks on Church

U.S.-Iranian Pastor Abedini’s Ordeal in Iran Tests, Builds Faith of Wife, Children

Taxpayers Fund Christian-focused Congressional Prayer Caucus

Australia Blocks Pro-life Advocate from Entering the Country

Stephen Colbert: What it Means to be a Fool for Christ

Six Churches Torched in Tanzania

Christian Singer Sandi Patty Announces Retirement, Farewell Tour

Sadie Robertson Thanks God for Protecting Her in Car Accident

Actor Scott Baio Says Faith in God Helps Him as Wife Battles Brain Tumors

Justin Bieber: ‘I Just Wanna Honestly Live Like Jesus’

Opinion

The Paradoxes of Pope Francis

Planned Parenthood CEO Testifies before Congress

Some Thoughts on Reading Books and Tips to Help Cultivate Good Reading Practices

Refugees and the Moral Crisis of Our National Debt

Because of Christians, America Isn’t a Theocracy


READING: Luke 1, John 1:1-14

TEXTS AND APPLICATION:  It really is an amazing story. Think about it. God Himself came to earth. He who is the eternal Son of God, the One through whom all things were created, the light shining in the darkness, the Word become flesh, took up residence among us (John 1:1-14). And, He preceded His coming by sending the forerunner, a prophet miraculously born to older parents, to pave the way: There was a man named John who was sent from God. He came as a witness to testify about the light, so that all might believe through him (John 1:6-7).

He sent a man to announce His coming. When He could’ve shaken the earth or written across the skies, God sent a wilderness-based, strangely-dressed prophet to call people to repentance. He placed this history-changing announcement on the shoulders of a man.

That’s what God does even today. For whatever reason (and certainly for reasons we cannot understand), God uses human beings like us to tell His story. Consider this question: if you were God, would you turn this task over to you? I doubt it (and if you would trust yourself with this task, pride may be an issue . . . ). Still, God uses us as His instruments to announce His Son to our neighbors and the nations.

That’s quite a responsibility.

And, that’s quite a privilege!

ACTION STEPS: Today, tell at least one person what Jesus means in your life. If possible, say “thanks” to the person who paved the way for you to follow the Lord.

PRAYER: “God, thank You that You came to us and use us. Use me today to point somebody else to You.”


Our Time is Short

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


What is The Gospel?

God made everything out of nothing, including you and me. His main purpose in creation was to bring him pleasure.

The chief way in which we as humanity do this is through loving, obeying, and enjoying him perfectly.

Instead of this, we have sinned against our loving Creator and acted in high-handed rebellion.

God has vowed that he will righteously and lovingly judge sinners with eternal death.

But God, being merciful, loving, gracious, and just, sent his own son, Jesus Christ, in the likeness of man to live as a man; fulfilling his perfect requirements in the place of sinners; loving, obeying, and enjoying him perfectly.

And further, his son bore the eternal judgment of God upon the cross of Calvary, as he satisfied the eternal anger of God, standing in the place of sinners. God treated Jesus as a sinner, though he was perfectly sinless, that he might declare sinners as perfect.

This glorious transaction occurs as the sinner puts their faith (dependence, trust) in the Lord Jesus Christ as their substitute. God then charges Christ’s perfection to the sinner, and no longer views him as an enemy but instead an adopted son covered in the perfect righteousness of his son.

God furnished proof that this sacrifice was accepted by raising Jesus from the dead.

God will judge the world in righteousness and all of those who are not covered in the righteousness of Christ, depending on him for forgiveness, will be forced to stand on their own to bear the eternal anger of God.

Therefore, all must turn from sin and receive Christ Jesus as Lord.


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


Resource Links

CanIKnowGod.com is a website inspired by LifesGreatestQuestion.com, with new content, images, audio and video that will help you understand more about who God is and how to know Him. The site is mobile responsive and has an infinite scroll which makes for a very user-friendly experience. After you indicate a decision on CanIKnowGod.com, you are directed to a page that details what it means to have a new and transformed life through Jesus Christ. There’s even a Facebook page for daily updates, encouragement and scripture sharing.

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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October 1, 2015 US and World Briefing Report

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Oct. 1, 2015

BLOOMBERG

Now that the Russian government is openly aiding the Syrian army, Russian officials all the way up to President Vladimir Putin could be prosecuted for abetting war crimes, according to former U.S. officials and international law experts.

Which was a bigger trauma for European stock investors: this summer’s pummeling of Greek banks, or the last month in Glencore Plc? Based on value lost, it’s the latter by far. As much as $14.4 billion was erased from the mining company’s shares in September — about $4.4 billion more than was wiped out in a Greek bank index in August. Glencore’s unprecedented volatility in the past 10 days is almost double that of the Greek lenders.

3 emails sent to Hillary Clinton in 2011 contained information that should have been considered “secret,” New York Times reports, citing State Department review of 6,300 pages of emails made public Wed.

Consumers were more upbeat last week than at any time since mid-July as Americans held the most favorable views of the buying climate in three months.

Vacation is serious business at the four-year-old firm Denver-based FullContact. Each employee is granted a yearly $7,500 bonus to use for time off, with a mandate to stay completely out of touch while away. The extra pay is forfeited if that rule is broken. Co-workers pick up the slack for the vacationers and abide by detailed plans outlining who will fill holes during an absence.

The number of Americans filing applications for unemployment benefits rose last week, maintaining a pattern of gains and losses around decade lows that signals firings remain muted. Jobless claims climbed by 10,000 to 277,000 in the week ended Sept. 26.

There are 70,000 ways to get sick, hurt or mortally injured, and the U.S. is making them official. On Thursday, U.S. hospitals, doctors and other care providers have to start using internationally developed standards called ICD-10 codes to bill government programs and private insurers in the nation’s $2.9 trillion-a-year health-care system. The codes cover everything from parrot bites to getting sucked into a jet engine.

Wal-Mart is planning job cuts at its headquarters that could involve hundreds of workers, including senior managers.

AP Top Stories

Powerful Category 3 Hurricane Joaquin bore down Thursday on the lightly populated islands of the central and eastern Bahamas and forecasters said it could grow more intense while following a path that would near the U.S. East Coast by the weekend.

Just hours before a midnight deadline, a bitterly divided Congress approved a stopgap spending bill Wednesday to keep the federal government open – but with no assurance there won’t be yet another shutdown showdown in December.

Just hours before a midnight deadline, a bitterly divided Congress approved a stopgap spending bill Wednesday to keep the federal government open – but with no assurance there won’t be yet another shutdown showdown in December.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas told world leaders Wednesday that he is no longer bound by agreements that have defined relations with Israel for the past two decades and are meant to form the basis for a two-state solution to the Middle East conflict.

The Iranian foreign minister’s reported handshake with US President Barack Obama triggered chants of “Death to America” in Tehran’s parliament Wednesday and a warning against “another kind of spying”.

Hundreds of Iranian troops have arrived in Syria in the last 10 days and will soon join government forces and their Lebanese Hezbollah allies in a major ground offensive backed by Russian air strikes, two Lebanese sources told Reuters.

Saudi Arabia, a leading foe of President Bashar al-Assad, demanded his ally Russia end its raids on Syria, saying the strikes had caused civilian casualties while failing to target the hardline Islamic State militants Moscow says it opposes.

Almost 30% of all homes lost value in August from a year earlier, down from a recent high of 65% in January 2009, although a normal housing market would be closer to 20%.

In a Bloomberg poll of Americans age 18 to 35-the millennial generation-47 percent said they do not expect their cohort to live better than their parents. For one thing, it’s hard to imagine outdoing your parents if you’re still sleeping under their roof.

BBC

Russia has launched air strikes in Syria for a second day, saying that Islamic State (IS) had been targeted.

The leader of Colombia’s largest rebel group, Farc has announced a halt to the rebels’ military training.

Five Brazilian policemen have been arrested after mobile phone footage appeared to show an officer placing a gun in the hand of a teenager they had shot dead in a Rio de Janeiro favela.

Australia has detained a US anti-abortion campaigner for attempting to enter the country without a valid visa.

WND

Wednesday’s announcement by Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas that the Palestinians will no longer abide by the Oslo Accords and the raising of the flag of Palestine for the first time over the United Nations in New York could be ominous signs for the future of peace in the Middle East, say experts in Bible prophecy.

The UN 2030 Agenda endorsed by President Obama, Pope Francis and the U.N. General Assembly brings the world one giant step closer to true global governance. The U.N. document approved Sunday in New York, “Transforming Our World: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” includes in its preamble the call for a “new universal agenda” for all of humanity.

A group of libertarian students distributing free copies of the U.S. Constitution during a free speech protest held in a “free speech zone” at Penn State University Friday were confronted by a police officer and told they needed to cease their activities and first obtain school approval.


 

Top News – 10/1/2015

Washington’s Time is Up: Russia Should Lead World, Not US – Czech Media
Having brought chaos, lawlessness and terrorism into Libya and Iraq, the United States is now trying to do the same in Syria. Europe has become fed up with Washington’s wrongdoings and says Russia should become a new world leader, Czech journalist Jiri Vyvadil wrote for newspaper Parlamentnilisty.cz.

German Police Chief: Muslim Violence Shows Christian Refugees Must Be Housed Separately
Jörg Radek, deputy head of Germany’s police union, said Christian and Muslim migrants should be lodged separately, following the increasing numbers of attacks on Christians by Muslims in refugee centers. And according to The Independent, a policy of segregation has already been implemented in the German state of Thuringia after Christian migrants in asylum centers were attacked by Sunnis attempting to impose Sharia law.

Obama puts U.S. on ‘fast track’ to world government
“The only thing they are lacking right now is a sufficient crisis big enough to win enthusiastic public support in America and other nations in the world for full-on global governance,” says Paul McGuire, a Fox News and History Channel contributor…

Trump’s Meeting With Prosperity Preachers Is Outreach to Heretics, Russell Moore Says
Donald Trump’s Evangelical outreach is mostly with preachers who mainstream Evangelicals would consider heretics, Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, says. Despite his veneer of bombast and blunt pronouncements that sometimes bristle even the most composed of his political rivals, GOP presidential frontrunner Donald Trump told about 40 religious leaders in a private Monday meeting that he is indeed “a man of faith,” but just doesn’t wear it on his sleeve.

Global economy loses steam as Chinese, European factories falter
The world economy lost momentum in September, with China’s vast factory sector shrinking again and euro zone manufacturing growth weakening slightly, both casualties of waning global demand.

Hurricane Joaquin to bring storm surge to Bahamas: U.S. monitor
Hurricane Joaquin will bring high winds and a storm surge to the Central Bahamas through Thursday night, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said in its latest advisory. The major hurricane, located about 65 miles (105 km) southeast of San Salvador with maximum sustained winds of 120 mph (195 km/h), is expected to strengthen in the next day or so, the NHC said.

China, Russia vow to further coordination on int’l affairs
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi met his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, on Wednesday at UN headquarters in New York and vowed to further coordination on international affairs. China attaches great importance to the comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership with Russia and is willing to work with Russia to ensure the success of a series of high-level visits during the year and the various conferences and exhibitions, said Wang.

Russian general tells US diplomats: ‘We launch Syria air strikes in one hour. Stay out of the way’
On Wednesday, US diplomats in Baghdad were reduced to the role of meekly receiving a message. Russian air strikes on targets across Syria would commence in one hour, their visitor told them. For the safety of all concerned, it would be better if the US Air Force stayed out of the way and suspended its own bombing campaign in Syria.

Russian defense ministry says new round of Syria air strikes hit four targets
The Russian Defence Ministry said on Thursday it had carried out a new round of air strikes in Syria overnight, hitting four Islamic State targets while strictly avoiding populated areas. It said Sukhoi-24M and Sukhoi-25 aircraft had flown eight sorties, hitting an ammunition depot near Idlib as well as a three-story Islamic State command center near Hama.

Major Hurricane Joaquin to Hammer US East Coast With Flooding, Strong Winds
Hurricane Joaquin is rapidly intensifying. Joaquin reached Category 3 status late Wednesday evening. The storm is now expected to strengthen into a Category 4 storm sometime late Thursday or Thursday night.

CO-ROTATING INTERACTION REGION
NOAA forecasters estimate a 40% chance of polar geomagnetic storms on Oct. 2nd when a co-rotating interaction region (CIR) is expected to hit Earth’s magnetic field.

Moderate earthquake 5.6 mag, 139 km SSW of Biha, Indonesia
A moderate earthquake with magnitude 5.6 (ml/mb) was reported 139 km SSW of Biha, Indonesia (86 miles) on Thursday. A tsunami warning has been issued near Biha in Indonesia.

Earthquake shakes Mexico City, no damage reported
The earthquake registered a magnitude of 5.2, Mexico’s national seismological service said.

4.0 earthquake shakes Northern Oklahoma
A magnitude 4.0 earthquake struck near Perry, Oklahoma, Thursday morning, according to the USGS.

The Latest: Iran supports Russian airstrikes in Syria
… The Foreign Ministry in Tehran says that Iran fully supports Russian airstrikes against “terrorist groups” in Syria. According to a statement by the ministry’s spokeswoman, Marzieh Afkham, the “Islamic Republic of Iran considers military action by Russia against armed terrorist groups to be a step toward fighting terrorism and toward resolving the current crisis” in Syria.

Advanced aliens could ‘conquer and colonise’ our planet, warns Stephen Hawking
Stephen Hawking has tackled the mysteries of the universe his entire life. Now the world-renowned scientist has some new things to say about a potential alien invasion . “If aliens visit us, the outcome could be much like when Columbus landed in America, which didn’t turn out well for the Native Americans,” Professor Hawking told El País .

Abbas says Palestinians no longer bound by pacts with Israel
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas told world leaders Wednesday that he is no longer bound by agreements that have defined relations with Israel for the past two decades and are meant to form the basis for a two-state solution to the Middle East conflict. But what sounded like a potentially explosive declaration was blunted by the lack of any detail on how he plans to move forward.

Hajj stampede: Iran death toll rises to 464
Iran says number of its citizens who died in the Hajj stampeded in Saudi Arabia last week has reached 464 – nearly double the previous toll. Iranian authorities said there was no longer hope of finding any of the country’s missing pilgrims alive. According to Saudi officials, 769 people died in the crush in Mina, near Mecca, and 934 were injured.

Syria conflict: Russia ‘launches fresh strikes’
Russia has launched air strikes against targets in Syria for a second day, reports say. The strikes targeted rebel positions in the north-west held by an alliance known as the Army of Conquest, Lebanon’s al-Mayadeen TV reported. On Monday Russian said its aircraft had carried out about 20 missions against the so-called Islamic State group (IS).

Hurricane Joaquin strengthens as it nears Bahamas
Hurricane Joaquin, the third of the Atlantic season, has strengthened into a category 3 storm as it nears the Bahamas, the US National Hurricane Center (NHC) says. The eye of the storm is expected to pass over eastern islands of the Bahamas overnight. A hurricane warning is in effect for much of the country, that could see winds of up to 185km/h (115mph).

Syria crisis: Russia and US military to hold talks on air strikes
The US and Russian military will hold talks “as soon as possible” to avoid clashing in Syria, the countries’ top diplomats say. Russian defence officials say their aircraft carried out about 20 missions against the so-called Islamic State group (IS) on Wednesday. But the US expressed fears the targets were non-IS opponents of Russia’s ally, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Taliban Kunduz attack: Afghan forces claim control of city
Afghan officials say they have regained control of key areas of the northern city of Kunduz from the Taliban. An operation launched overnight saw forces recapture government landmarks and inflict heavy casualties on the militants, officials said. But the Taliban has insisted it still controls large parts of the city.

Abbas says Palestinians no longer bound by pacts with Israel
UNITED NATIONS — Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas told world leaders Wednesday that he is no longer bound by agreements that have defined relations with Israel for the past two decades and are meant to form the basis for a two-state solution to the Middle East conflict.

Muslim tsunami: German woman evicted to make way for refugees
A 51-year-old German healthcare worker is being evicted from her apartment in which she lived for 16 years in order to make room for the Muslim refugees from Syria and other war-torn Islamic nations, with refugee camps and facilities already full throughout German, according to the European news media. The German woman is being removed from her legal dwelling to make way for mostly Muslim Syrians who are being treated as asylum-seekers with little or no background checks of those who are flooding European Union (EU) countries and eventually the United States. The German government is trying to provide living accommodations for the hundreds of thousands of Arabs flooding their cities.

President Obama Continues Spinning Fantasies at the United Nations
President Barack Obama continued his feckless foreign policy charade at the United Nations yesterday. He chaired what was billed as “The Leaders’ Summit on Countering ISIL and Violent Extremism,” and he met with Cuban President Raul Castro.

It’s the world not just America that Obama is Fundamentally Transforming
Like the mother who gives her children a fleeting glance of the ice cream dessert to get them to eat their veggies, last week’s historic papal visit was eye candy to keep the attention of the masses away from the radical changes coming society’s way. Mesmerized by the televised addresses of Pope Francis to Congress and the United Nations, a majority of plain folk didn’t feel a thing when the noose of Global Citizenship was being lowered over their collective necks.

Fairbanks, Alaska Sees Record September Daily Snow; Thousands Without Power, Trees Downed
For the second time in less than a week, Fairbanks, Alaska, was blanketed with heavy snow. This time, it was a record-breaker.

Russia begins airstrikes in Syria, but West disputes targets
MOSCOW — Russia launched airstrikes Wednesday in Syria, sharply escalating Moscow’s role in the conflict but also raising questions about whether its intent is fighting Islamic State militants or protecting longtime ally, President Bashar Assad. President Vladimir Putin called it a pre-emptive strike against the militants, and the Russian Defense Ministry said its warplanes targeted and destroyed eight positions belonging to extremists from the IS group, also known as ISIL or ISIS. It did not give specific locations.

Russian strikes again expose US disarray
New York – Russia’s dramatic entry Wednesday into the Syrian war put the United States on the back foot once again and left Washington struggling to regain the military and diplomatic initiative. As US Secretary of State John Kerry was in New York trying to coordinate with his Kremlin opposite number Sergei Lavrov, a Russian officer contacted the US embassy in Baghdad. His message was simple: Russian jets are about to launch air strikes in Syria, please stay out of their way.

Trump says he’d send back Syrians taken in by US
Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump said Wednesday that if he’s elected president he would send back Syrian refugees taken in by the U.S. because they may be Islamic State militants in disguise.”I’m putting the people on notice that are coming here from Syria as part of this mass migration,” Trump said during an evening rally in Keene, New Hampshire.”If I win, they’re going back.”


Top Headlines – 10/1/2015

Abbas threatens to stop abiding by Oslo Accords in UN General Assembly speech

Abbas: Peace process must be multilateral effort

Analysis: Abbas’s empty bombshell

Israel undermines U.S. peace effort, Palestinian Abbas tells U.N

Netanyahu: Abbas’s speech was deceitful, direct talks best way forward

Abbas tells UN that Palestinians won’t accept Israeli violation of al-Aksa Mosque

IDF officer, soldier injured in rock throwing incidents minutes after Abbas speech

Turkish prime minister vows to help Palestinians in speech to UN

UN, Quartet to discuss jump-starting peace efforts

Palestinians raise flag at UN’s New York headquarters for first time

Lapid met with Former Saudi intelligence minister in order to advance peace initiative

Israel seeks to legalize controversial settler outpost

Russia notified Israel ahead of Syria airstrike

Pentagon to open ‘lines of communication’ with Russia over strikes in Syria

US and Russian military to hold urgent talks over Syria crisis after Putin defies West – live updates

Kerry, Lavrov spoke by phone, US sees Russian moves as dangerous

NATO: Reports of Russian air strikes on Syria rebels troubling

Carter: Russian strikes will ‘inflame’ Syrian war, likely targeted non-ISIS areas

Russia Reportedly Orders U.S. Planes Out of Syria as Its Parliament Approves Sending Troops

Kerry rebuffs Russian demand, says US airstrikes in Syria ‘will continue’

Russia says talk of Moscow hitting non-IS targets in Syria is distortion

Putin says only way to deal with terrorists in Syria is to act preemptively

ISIS using healthy hostages as organ donors, blood banks: Escaped captive

Tempers flare in Germany’s crowded refugee centres

‘Obama handshake’ triggers anger in Iran parliament

Aden’s war devastation shows extent of Yemen’s human crisis

Hindu Extremists Order All Christian Missionaries to Leave Nepal as Tensions Rise

Ahmed’s High School Receives Bomb Threat

Rising bloodshed in L.A. feels like ‘Dodge City,’ LAPD chief says

Did the United Nations Just Introduce a New World Order?

UN is an ‘entirely corrupt body’ – Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters to RT

Congress approves stopgap spending bill to avert a government shutdown

Stocks leap on last day of worst quarter since ’11

Fear & Greed Index beta – What emotion is driving the market now?

5.8 magnitude earthquake hits near Biha, Indonesia

5.7 magnitude earthquake hits near Visokoi Island, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands

5.5 magnitude earthquake hits near Tres Palos, Mexico

Joaquin upgraded to hurricane: 6-12 inches of rain possible in NYC

How Will Joaquin Compare to Superstorm Sandy, Hurricane Isabel?

Hurricane Joaquin Prompts Warnings For East Coast as Support grows for Division of Israel

Joaquin’s origin is Hebrew meaning ‘lifted by Yahweh’ or ‘established by Yahweh’

Millions of cubic metres of flood water erupts from Taiwan’s Shihmen Dam in dramatic video

Arctic Sea Ice Still TOO THICK For Ships To Regularly Traverse The Northwest Passage

Al Gore spreads environmental gospel before climate talks

DNA Studies Trace Jewish Priestly Lineage From Biblical Times

‘Eternal Life’: Russian Scientist Anatoli Brouchkov Injects Himself With 3.5-Million-Year-Old Bacteria To Boost Longevity, Immune System

US House of Representatives votes to defund Planned Parenthood

Congressional Black Caucus Praises Planned Parenthood as 35% of Babies Abortion Kills are Black

House report: Planned Parenthood spent millions on ‘blowout’ parties, travel, salaries

Be Still and Know That YOU Are God? Is That Really What Scripture Says?

Prestonwood Baptist to Host October Forum for Presidential Contenders

2,500 Tickets to Donald Trump’s Friday Rally at Virginia Megachurch Sell Out in Hours

David Cameron slams Obama: ‘Barack, biggest problem we have is Islamist extremism’


Frontrunning: October 01

  • After Rough Quarter, Investors Buckle Up (Read More)
  • From heroes to bystanders? Central banks’ growth challenge (Read More)
  • Russian Airstrike in Syria Targeted CIA-Backed Rebels, U.S. Officials Say (Read More)
  • Kremlin says Syria air strikes target list of groups, not just Islamic State (Read More)
  • That’s information warfare? Russia accused of killing civilians in Syria (Read More)
  • Euro zone factory growth eases in August despite modest price rises (Read More)
  • How Glencore’s Crazy Month Makes Greek Banks Look Tame (Read More)
  • China Begins Disclosing Reserves to IMF (Read More)
  • Hurricane Joaquin to bring storm surge to Bahamas: U.S. monitor (Read More)
  • Ousted Brookings economist lashes back at Warren (Read More)
  • BOE Says Market May Be Underpricing Risks of Falling Liquidity (Read More)
  • Hillary Clinton aides worried about private email use in 2011 (Read More)
  • Hillary Clinton Emails Had a Two-Month Gap (Read More)
  • VW Workforce Starts to Feel Pinch From Diesel-Emissions Scandal (Read More)
  • VW seeks to boost finances to meet emission scandal costs (Read More)
  • Children of the Yuan Percent: Everyone Hates China’s Rich Kids (Read More)

The Briefing

1) Planned Parenthood congressional hearing exposes limits of politics on moral issues

The GOP Is Overmatched, The Federalist (David Harsanyi)

2) Pope meeting with Kim Davis underlines quandary of Francis’ desire to appeal to everyone

Pope Francis Met With Kim Davis, Kentucky County Clerk, in Washington, New York Times (Laurie Goodstein)

Pope Francis isn’t a liberal. He’s something more radical: a Christian humanist., The Week (Peter Weber)

Kim Davis met with Pope Francis for 10 minutes, received a rosary, CNN (Ed Payne and Daniel Burke)

What it means that Pope Francis met Kim Davis, Crux News (John L. Allen, Jr.)

Relax, Pope Francis’s meeting with Kim Davis isn’t such a big deal, Washington Post (James Martin)

How Pope Francis Undermined the Goodwill of His Trip and Proved to Be a Coward, Huffington Post (Michelangelo Signorile)

3) Pope’s political messaging consequence of sacramental division of practice and doctrine

A Politicized Pope, Wall Street Journal (Daniel Henninger)

In other news…

The Philosophy of Selfie The Atlantic (Spencer Kornhaber)

Daily Digest

October 1, 2015

THE FOUNDATION

“But the mild voice of reason, pleading the cause of an enlarged and permanent interest, is but too often drowned, before public bodies as well as individuals, by the clamors of an impatient avidity for immediate and immoderate gain.” —James Madison, Federalist No. 42

FEATURED RIGHT ANALYSIS

Obama, the JV Commander in Chief

By Mark Alexander

2015-10-01-4641a5a1_large.jpg

Two days after Barack Obama’s UN confab talkathon with Vladimir Putin, Russia attacked U.S.-backed forces in Syria.

On Wednesday, a Russian general dropped in at our embassy in Baghdad and issued a démarche (a diplomatic slap down) summarily demanding that U.S. personnel and aircraft get out of Syria because Russia would begin airstrikes in an hour.

And Russia did just that — not against Islamic State adversaries but against the dwindling U.S.-backed Syrian militias attempting to topple the tyrannical Russian client state regime of Bashar al-Assad.

Unlike Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, his actions in Syria put Russian and U.S. military forces on a collision course for direct combat.

Of course, Putin knows that Obama will back down.

According to retired General Jack Keane, former Army Vice Chief of Staff, “Once again, Putin, who’s economy is in the tank and who’s military is no match for the United States … has outmaneuvered and out-bluffed [Obama]. He knows that [Obama] will do nothing but verbal condemnation. What he is counting on is [Obama’s] predictable fear of escalation and fear of confrontation. This is a game changer, this is significant because Putin is changing … the strategic balance of power.”

Indeed he is.

Former UN Ambassador John Bolton stated succinctly, “[Putin] is bidding for dominance in the Middle East and he thinks he can prevail because he [faces] a weak and feckless occupant in the White House.”

Obama’s secretary of defense, Ashton Carter, responded to the most serious direct Russian threat since the Cold War by offering nothing but “verbal condemnation”: “This is not the kind of behavior that we should expect professionally from uh, uh, uh, the Russian military, professionally, and it’s one good thing to have an avenue of communication that is less unprofessional than a drop-in.”

Carter added, “I take the Russians at their word — they’re exceptionally clear about what they’re saying, and their actions now seem to reflect what they said they’re going to do.”

That certainly distinguishes Putin from Obama. It appears that Ash Carter has adopted Jimmy Carter’s Middle East playbook.

John McCain had some advice for Obama and Carter: “What we should be saying to Putin [is], ‘We fly anywhere when we want to, when and how we want to, and you better stay out of the way.'”

Obama’s spokesman Josh Earnest surmised, “Russia’s not going to be successful in imposing a military solution inside of Syria. They’ll be no more successful in that regard than the United States was in imposing a military solution in Iraq in the last decade.”

Huh? The only reason our “military solution in Iraq” failed is that Obama retreated from Iraq to bolster his 2012 re-election campaign, having made his promise to exit Iraq the centerpiece of that campaign, amid his other colossal domestic and foreign policy failures.

Earnest also observed, “The president believes it is important for Russia’s military activities to not come into conflict with our efforts there. If Russia is willing, we would welcome their constructive contribution to this effort.”

Yes, “if Russia is willing.”

John Kerry shared an open mic with Russia’s foreign secretary, Sergey Lavrov, shortly after the bombing began and noted, “We agreed on the imperative of, as soon as possible, perhaps even as soon as tomorrow, that as soon as possible, having a military to military de-confliction discussion.” For Lavrov’s part, he just said the media should ignore what the Pentagon has to say about Russia’s attacks.

The Russians are not concerned about “de-confliction.” They just told us to stay out of their way.

Jonah Goldberg concluded that Obama’s response is a “perfect seminar on what you get, in reality, when you go into the White House with the ideology that Obama had.” Goldberg continued, “He sincerely thought that, from day one, if America withdrew from the world this wonderful tooth fairy-like organization called the ‘international community’ would fix all of our problems. … No, it turns out that when you create a vacuum … actors like Russia, China and Iran seek to take advantage of the vacuum, exploit it and become hegemons regionally or globally, and that’s exactly what we are seeing. It’s going to take us decades to put this thing back together.”

In contrast to Obama and Company, recall Marco Rubio’s lucid prediction two weeks ago at the Sept. 16 Republican debate: “I have an understanding of exactly what it is Russia and Putin are doing. It’s pretty straightforward. He wants to reposition Russia once again as a geopolitical force. … Here’s what you’re going to see in the next few weeks. The Russians will begin to fly combat missions in that region, not just targeting ISIS but in order to prop up Assad.”

Who can forget Obama’s condemnation of Mitt Romney in the final 2012 presidential debate? Wagging his finger at Romney, Obama said, “A few months ago when you were asked what’s the biggest geopolitical threat facing America, you said Russia. You said Russia. … You said Russia. The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because the Cold War’s been over for 20 years. When it comes to our foreign policy, you seem to want to import the foreign policies of the 1980s, just like the social policies of the 1950s, and the economic policies of the 1920s.”

Of course, Romney was right on foreign policy, social policy and economic policy.

Make no mistake, Obama and his administration are the “JV Team,” and the spillover from the vacuum Obama left in the region has not only created a humanitarian crisis of biblical proportions, but his feckless “leadership” has now empowered the Taliban resurgence in Afghanistan.

The Obama-Clinton “reset” button with Russia is now buried under Russian-bombed out ruins.

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Spending $500 Million to Deprive Children of Life

By Allyne Caan

2015-10-01-fe8ad699_large.jpg

During the five-plus hours Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards spent before a congressional hearing on Tuesday, her organization had time to kill more than 185 babies.

Unfortunately, while debating whether the abortion mill should continue to receive more than $500 million annually in taxpayer dollars, Republicans, who rightfully called the hearing, asked the wrong question: “Does Planned Parenthood really need federal subsidies?”

Instead, they should have gotten to the crux of the issue: Does the Constitution authorize spending money to deprive children of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?

The correct answer is, of course, no.

Were the right question asked — and correctly answered — the hearing could have begun and ended in five minutes. But since Republicans went down the road of financial “need,” let’s take a look at those numbers.

Far from being a health clinic chain desperate for federal dollars, Planned Parenthood is a massive profit machine, grossing nearly $1.3 billion annually and holding $1.4 billion in assets. Richards herself pocketed pay of more than $590,000 in 2013, while more than 40 other Planned Parenthood execs make more than $200,000.

Richards admitted she “can’t think of a specific impact” of losing taxpayer dollars. We can think of 327,000 specific impacts.

(Incidentally, Richards also couldn’t think of any instances in which unborn children survive abortions. It’s amazing the sudden onset of amnesia a congressional hearing can spur.)

But back to funding, Planned Parenthood doesn’t “just get a big check from the federal government,” Richards said. “We, like other Medicaid providers, we are reimbursed directly for services provided.” And pulling federal funding “would deny people on Medicaid the ability to go to a provider of their choice, and many of them do go to Planned Parenthood for a variety of different reasons.”

According to the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute, public expenditures for family planning exceeded $2.3 billion in FY 2010 — and 75% of this went toward Medicaid. It’s all part of the Title X Family Planning Program, enacted in 1970, in accordance with Article Nil, Section Nonexistent of the Constitution. This funding purportedly supports a variety of family planning and preventative health services.

Of course, for Planned Parenthood, this “variety” does not include basic women’s health services like mammograms — no matter how many times its defenders lie about that particular service.

Perhaps this is why Richards herself does not rely on Planned Parenthood for her own health care.

In fact, if Richards is to be believed (cue: sarcasm), just a teeny weeny bit of this “variety” is abortion. According to Richards, Planned Parenthood’s 327,000 annual abortions are just 3% of the health services offered by its clinics.

Hmm, that’s odd. Richards herself has said Planned Parenthood serves 2.7 million women each year. Do the math, and the percentage is closer to 12 million. Not only this, but as Rep. Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) noted during the hearing, more than 86% of Planned Parenthood’s non-government revenue in 2013 came from abortions.

Even Common Core math can’t make 86 equal anything close to 3.

Still, Richards attempted to skirt the truth, explaining that some people come to Planned Parenthood “more than once for different services.” And she pulled the famous “federal money does not go for abortions” lie, saying, “So the federal portion that we were discussing is reimbursement for preventative care services.” Perhaps in fantasyland she’s right, but saying taxpayer money doesn’t fund abortions is like saying you can pour a bucket of water in the deep end of a pool and keep it out of the shallow end. The taxpayer dollars doled to Planned Parenthood are entirely fungible — and paying for some services allows the abortion mill to divert other resources to practice its primary and deadly trade.

In truth, Richards and her corporation masked as a non-profit organization are cashing in — at the expense of taxpayers — on the blood and body parts of innocent babies. And how tightly Planned Parenthood is holding onto its rhetoric of lies shows just how much their factories of death stand to lose.

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Secret Service Broke Laws to Attack Critical Congressman

Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) is the one who’s led the charge on malfeasance issues at the Secret Service, and here’s what the agency’s response has been: About 45 Secret Service agents violated privacy laws when they accessed Chaffetz’s decade-old rejected application for a job with the agency. According to a government report examined by ABC News, the service opened up the file 18 minutes into the March hearing in which Chaffetz grilled the organization over the incident where two drunk Secret Service agents drove through an active bomb investigation and bumped into a White House barrier. Later, the service leaked the document to The Daily Beast in an effort to discredit the lawmaker.

There’s no doubt reform is needed because this is the agency of the Colombian prostitution scandal, the agency that bungled a 2011 investigation of shots fired at the White House, and the one that let a man armed with a knife into the building. But everybody from the service director’s chief of staff to key positions down the line saw Chaffetz’s application. Using government to shut down a politician is astounding corruption. Recall that Richard Nixon created the “Political Enemies Project,” a list of people Nixon disliked and wanted to hurt by siccing the government upon them. As Hot Air’s Allahpundit writes, “The theory they wanted the public to believe, I guess, is that Chaffetz harbored some sort of grudge against the agency for not hiring him many years before, as if a powerful congressman couldn’t quite get over his disappointment of more than a decade earlier. They’re even incompetent in smearing people.”

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What Difference Does a Temper Tantrum Make?

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy will be in the spotlight more frequently as he is the presumptive replacement for outgoing House Speaker John Boehner. And he’s in hot water for supposedly politicizing the Benghazi investigation. “Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right?” McCarthy said. “But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping. Why? Because she’s untrustable.” Hillary immediately spun his remarks as evidence the investigation is nothing more than a partisan witch hunt, thus absolving her of wrongdoing. “I knew the ambassador that we lost in Benghazi,” she railed. “When I hear a statement like that, which demonstrates unequivocally that this was always meant to be a partisan, political exercise, I feel like it does a grave disservice and dishonors not just the memory of the four that we lost but of everybody who has served our country.”

Of course, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are responsible not just for dishonoring the memory of four dead Americans, including U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, but for their very lives. And it was Clinton and Obama who politicized the Benghazi attack as part of Obama’s re-election narrative. What McCarthy meant was that the events before, during and after the attack prove Clinton is untrustworthy. She’s a political hack and a liar, so it’s no wonder the Benghazi panel is indeed having an effect on how the public sees her — the panel was the only way the truth could ever come out. McCarthy’s inarticulate statement and Hillary’s ensuing temper tantrum in no way absolves her of malfeasance and dereliction of duty. Nor does it wipe away her lengthy record worthy of a different kind of orange jumpsuit. Remember that while the Leftmedia heads for the fainting couch over the shock of politicians making political calculations.

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OPINION IN BRIEF

Mona Charen: “Speaking of running circles, that’s pretty much what Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards managed to do at the much-heralded hearing this week. The committee’s chairman announced that the devastating videos produced by the Center for Medical Progress would not be shown during the hearing due to a court order in California. So, instead of the topic of the hour — truly heart-rending footage of aborted babies being picked over for their livers and hearts, to cite just one example — the hearing featured charts showing how much money Planned Parenthood spent on various services over the past year. Riveting. The videos are the reason the hearing was held at all. It is the videos that have galvanized abortion opponents, moved the debate and put pressure on Congress to once again attempt to defund the organization. If, due to legal wrangling, the videos cannot be shown now, then why not hold off the hearings until they can be shown? The videos are the story.”

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SHORT CUTS

Upright: “[I]f Republicans want to defund Planned Parenthood right now, the best way to do it is through the states. There are 31 states with Republican governors. Five of them have already defunded Planned Parenthood by prohibiting the use of Medicaid funds for abortion. Putting pressure on the states to remove taxpayer support of abortion mills can work and it can be done without sabotaging the Republicans’ presidential chances next year.” —Michael Reagan

Opposing the sun: “Think sunny days are good for plants? Not always. Sunlight causes #ozone to form, which harms foliage, weakens trees.” —EPA on Twitter (So are they admitting our solar energy endeavor’s a waste?)

Alpha Jackass: “Look, we had a president who came in and said the same kind of thing — new and improved, hope and change — and he didn’t have the leadership skills to fix things.” —Jeb Bush taking a shot at Marco Rubio

Non Compos Mentis: “Gun-rights advocates have waged a relentless battle to gut what remains of America’s lax and inadequate gun regulations. But what the advocates do not acknowledge — and some courts seem not to understand — is that their arguments are grounded in precedent unique to the violent world of the slaveholding South.” —Saul Cornell and Eric Ruben in The Atlantic (In truth, gun control was originally enacted by Democrats as a way to repress blacks’ rights.)

Late-night humor: “On Friday, despite our trade wars, tension in the South China Sea and Chinese hacking attacks, President Obama gave President Xi Jinping a full South Lawn welcome, where the Chinese president greeted every White House staffer by name and bank account.” —Stephen Colbert

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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.


Palestinian flag flies over U.N. as Hurricane brews in Atlantic

Massive storm headed for D.C. named ‘Joaquin,’ meaning ‘Lifted by Yahweh’

William Koenig authored the 2004 book, “Eye to Eye: Facing the Consequences of Dividing Israel,” which documented the rise of punishing hurricanes whenever the U.S. turned toward anti-Israel or pro-Palestinian policies.

View Article


Obama puts U.S. on ‘fast track’ to world government

‘Literally just one crisis away from that happening’

The United Nations 2030 Agenda endorsed by President Obama, Pope Francis and the U.N. General Assembly brings the world one giant step closer to true global governance.

The U.N. document approved Sunday in New York, “Transforming Our World: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” includes in its preamble the call for a “new universal agenda” for all of humanity.

But one big question looms.

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This Is For The ‘Nothing Is Happening’ Crowd…

Overall, the Dow has down 588.40 points that day. When you combine that decline with the 530.94 point plunge from the previous Friday, you get a total drop of 1119.34 points over two consecutive trading days. Never before in history had the Dow fallen by more than 500 points on two trading days in a row. If that entire decline had fallen within one trading day, it would have been the largest stock market crash in U.S. history by a very wide margin, and everyone would be running around saying that author Jonathan Cahn was right again.

But because this massive decline fell over two consecutive trading days that somehow makes him wrong?

Are you kidding me?

View Article


As Magog Takes The Stage, A Stunned Global Community Struggles For Answers

“I think the Russians have made clear that they’re not interested in provoking a conflict,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said.

“Therefore, thou son of man, prophesy against Gog, and say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal: And I will turn thee back, and leave but the sixth part of thee, and will cause thee to come up from the north parts, and will bring thee upon the mountains of Israel: And I will smite thy bow out of thy left hand, and will cause thine arrows to fall out of thy right hand.” Ezekiel 39:1-3 (KJV)

Vladimir Putin is a man on a mission, and he doesn’t even know it. Early this morning, the Russian parliament approved the use of Russian force in Syria mere hours after Putin’s appearance at the United Nations General Assembly. And in the blink of an eye, Russia instantly became the biggest player and the dominant force in the Middle East. Reaction from the pusillanimous American president Barack Hussein Obama was akin to that of watching Barney Fife attempting to deal with a traffic violation.

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Putin’s real goal is the invasion of the nation of Israel.

Obama’s press secretary open his mouth and uttered this amazingly and mind-numbingly ignorant comment: “I think the Russians have made clear that they’re not interested in provoking a conflict,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said. “Their actions thus far indicate that that’s what they believe.” Oh, really now. Hey, guess what? Putin just took Syria after he took Ukraine, and he’s just getting started. He is on a march towards the “grand prize” that the Bible declares strive to obtain, and that is to take Israel. Putin is a very smart man, he waited patiently until Syria became so weakened by civil war and sectarian violence that there would be no objection to his arrival.

Is Putin now assembling the nations that will make up the mighty force of Magog?

Russia is, by far, the largest nation on the face of the earth, nearly twice as big as second place Canada. In ancient times, and even in maps found in the 17th and 18th centuries, Russia was called Magog. They are the northern most point on the face of the Earth from the nation of Israel. Why is this important? Because Bible prophecy states that Israel’s main end times enemy is due north of them. The Bible says that Russia, Magog, will take two really good shots at attacking Israel. The first time will be during the Battle of Armageddon at the end of the Time of Jacob’s Trouble after the Rapture, and the second time will be 1,000 years after that in the Battle of Armageddon. Revelation 19 and 20 clearly show two separate battles with 1,000 years between them, they are not the same. (For more on this, please read our article on the Two Wars of the Prophet Ezekiel.)

Obama finds himself in a crazy, bad predicament now. After doing nothing with the 2 and a half years in which he could have taken control of the Syrian situation, Russia has stepped in and taken over. Yes. the United States military is more powerful than the Russian military – BUT – we have a spineless Commander-in-chief who is quaking in his bunny slippers right now. While Obama has been sharpening his golf game the last few years, Putin has been putting all the pieces in place to take functional control of the Middle East in a very Reaganesque way. From this point forward, the gateway to Syria will be through Russia. As a result, America has absolutely no response to today’s events other than to lamely attempt to spin it in a positive light.

Here are some of the actual statements that came from the Obama administration today:

  • “The United States supports any genuine effort to fight ISIL and al-Qaida affiliated groups, especially al-Nusra,” Kerry says. If Russia’s efforts represent a genuine commitment, “we welcome that effort”, he continues. source
  • “We have informed Russia that we are prepared to hold these deconfliction talks as early as possible: this week.” source
  • Secretary of Defense Ash Carter lashed out at Russia on Wednesday for escalating the conflict, saying its actions were equivalent to “pouring gasoline on a fire.” source
  • “Putin has this opening because of the absence of any U.S. strategy in Syria,” said Cotton, a former Army officer. “The U.S. must reject Russia’s interference and rally our partners to do the same.” source
  • “We don’t have much choice at this point but to figure out to co-exist” with the Russians, Rep. Adam Smith, the ranking Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee said. source

Yeah, that’s the ticket, go figure out how to “co-exist” with the Russia. Are you kidding me? But sadly, that’s what our foreign policy truly is – nothing. So while our military may be superior to Russia’s, and it is, our leadership is not. Under Obama, we have lost the appetite and resolve necessary to be not only a world leader but the world leader. Putin has stepped in to fill that leadership vacuum, and is doing a bang-up job so far. Magog will continue to rise in strength and numbers.

In the coming months, you will see a slow but very steady increase by Russia in expanding it’s military presence across the Middle East. Their ascent will be virtually unchecked and unchallenged. The internationally recognised Ukrainian territory of Crimea was annexed by the Russian Federation in March 2014. The military intervention and annexation by Russia took place in the aftermath of the Ukrainian Revolution. Did any other country outside of Ukraine lift a finger to stop Putin as he did this? No, they did not.

Vladimir Putin is a man of few words and much action, but don’t make the mistake of rooting for him. The Bible says that Magog and it’s leader Gog are led by the spirit of Satan, with their goal being the destruction of God’s holy land of Israel. Would that make Gog the Antichrist? You tell me, but it sure looks that way. Perhaps Putin is just the “advance man” for the actual Antichrist that will control Russia/Magog.

Maybe this whole thing will all blow over in a few weeks, or maybe we are witnessing events that will culminate in Magog at the Battle of Armageddon. I am not making predictions so much as reading what the Bible says and observing what’s going on. But either way now is no time to not be paying attention. As for me, I fully intend to watch the battle when it happens from the Balcony. For an unsaved, Christ-rejecting world, it’s not going to be a pretty sight.

These are truly the days of prophecy long ago foretold in the pages of the Holy Bible.

“And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.” Romans 13:11 (KJV)


Will Russian Military Build Up In Middle East Lead To Gog/Magog War?

Russia has carried out it’s first air strikes in Syria shortly after receiving an official request of help from Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and approval from the Russian parliament authorizing Vladimir Putin to send military troops into Syria………..  Click here for full story


The UN Launches ‘The Global Goals’ – A Blueprint For A United World

Have you heard of “the global goals”? If you haven’t heard of them by now, rest assured that you will be hearing plenty about them in the days ahead. The UN has stated that these new “global goals” represent a “new universal Agenda” for humanity. Virtually every nation on the planet has willingly signed on to this new agenda, and you are expected to participate whether you like it or not..……..  Click here for full story


Iran Sending Ground Troops To Join Russian Military As Battle For Syria Begins

Hundreds of Iranian troops have arrived in Syria in the last 10 days and will soon join government forces and their Lebanese Hezbollah allies in a major ground offensive backed by Russian air strikes, two Lebanese sources told Reuters.

“Keep not thou silence, O God: hold not thy peace, and be not still, O God. For, lo, thine enemies make a tumult: and they that hate thee have lifted up the head.” Psalm 83:1,2 (KJV)

EDITOR’S NOTE: One day after Russia began airstrikes on pockets of resistance to the Assad regime in Syria, news had surfaced that Iran is sending ground troops to join the battle. Russia and Iran are not there to defeat ISIS, they are there to restore power to Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad. Huge difference. By doing this, a permanent military front will be created on Israel’s northern border. The complete balance of power in the Middle East has changed and seemingly overnight. But this is not random happenstance, this is the fulfillment of Bible prophecy. And where the American President as all this is happening? On the sidelines, pushing gay rights from the golf course. 

The Russian air strikes will in the near future be accompanied by ground advances by the Syrian army and its allies,” said one of the sources familiar with political and military developments in the conflict.

“It is possible that the coming land operations will be focused in the Idlib and Hama countryside,” the source added.

The two sources said the operation would be aimed at recapturing territory lost by President Bashar al-Assad’s government to rebels.

It points to an emerging military alliance between Russia and Assad’s other main allies – Iran and Hezbollah – focused on recapturing areas of northwestern Syria that were seized by insurgents in rapid advances earlier this year.

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The vanguard of Iranian ground forces began arriving in Syria: soldiers and officers specifically to participate in this battle. They are not advisors … we mean hundreds with equipment and weapons. They will be followed by more,” the second source said. Iraqis would also take part in the operation, the source said.

Thus far, direct Iranian military support for Assad has come mostly in the form of military advisors. Iran has also mobilized Shi’ite militia fighters, including Iraqis and some Afghans, to fight alongside Syrian government forces.

Lebanon’s Hezbollah, which is backed by Iran, has been fighting alongside the Syrian army since early in the conflict.

The Russian air force began air strikes in Syria on Wednesday, targeting areas near the cities of Homs and Hama in the west of the country, where Assad’s forces are fighting an array of insurgent groups, though not Islamic State, which is based mostly in the north and east.

An alliance of insurgent groups including the al Qaeda-linked Nusra Front and powerful Ahrar al-Sham made rapid gains in Idlib province earlier this year, completely expelling the government from the area bordering Turkey. source


Persia Joins Syrian War, Russia Signs 150,000 conscripts into the military.

Posted: 01 Oct 2015 09:34 AM PDT

Hundreds of Iranian troops have arrived in Syria to join a major ground offensive in support of President Bashar al-Assad’s government, Lebanese sources said on Thursday, a further sign of the rapid internationalization of a civil war in which every major country in the region has a stake. Russian warplanes, in a second day of strikes, bombed a camp run by rebels trained by the CIA, the group’s commander said, putting Moscow and Washington on opposing sides in a Middle East conflict for the first time since the Cold War.

The U.S. and Russian militaries were due to hold talks via video link to seek ways to keep their militaries apart as they wage parallel campaigns of air strikes in Syria, a U.S. defense official said. Russian jets struck targets near the cities of Hama and Homs in western Syria on the second day of their air campaign. Moscow said it had hit Islamic State positions, but the areas it struck are mostly held by a rival insurgent alliance, which unlike Islamic State is supported by U.S. allies including Arab states and Turkey. CONTINUE

it is also being reported that Vladimir Putin has signed a decree drafting nearly 150,000 conscripts into the Russian military as Moscow’s warplanes unleashed a new wave of airstrikes in Syria.  The timing of the move – on the very day Russia entered the conflict yesterday – will likely raise suspicions the Russian President is planning a wider offensive to prop up his Syrian counterpart. It also comes after one of Putin’s staunchest allies called on him to send in Muslim ground troops to defeat the Islamic State and other Islamist extremist groups in the war-torn country.  CONTINUE 

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Kenneth Copeland Lays Hands and Prays Over Donald Trump

Posted: 01 Oct 2015 07:24 AM PDT

Earlier this month, Charisma reported how Paula White set up an invitation-only meeting between Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump and evangelical pastors. That meeting happened this week—and plenty of Pentecostals were there to lay hands on the billionaire, make declarations over his life and pray. Beyond Paula White, also present were Kenneth and Gloria Copeland, Jentezen Franklin, David Jeremiah, Jan Crouch, Steve Munsey, Jews for Jesus Rabbi Kirt Schneider, Bishop George Bloomer, Bishop Darrell Scott and Clarence McClendon.

In this video, Kenneth Copeland is praying over Trump. “No man can be successful as president of the United States without Your wisdom. And so we ask You today to give this man Your wisdom, boldly. Make sure and certain that he hears. Manifest Yourself to him,” Copeland prayed. “And we thank You and praise You for a bold man, a strong man and an obedient man.”As we have reported, Trump’s campaign is pulling out all the stops to woo Christian voters. He recently told a rally his favorite book is the Bible, but later refused to share his favorite verse.  FULL REPORT

 

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Threats Of A New Intifada As Abbas Prepares To Give Israel Ultimatum In UN Speech

Posted: 01 Oct 2015 05:59 AM PDT

We could very well be seeing the initial events that will thrust the world into a “Prophetic War” mentioned in Psalm Chapter 83, Speaking of an Islamic Confederation that would come against Israel to attempt wipe her from the face of the Earth. Speculation continues to abound as to what Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas will say during his speech at the United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday. Mahmoud Habbash, Abbas’s confidant and a former minister of religious affairs, had previously threatened a “bombshell” would be dropped at the UN by Abbas but appears to have scaled back such rhetoric as the day of the speech approaches. Analysts speculate that much of Abbas speech will focus on the Oslo accords and Palestinian demands that Israel meet it’s obligations from the accord. At the center of Palestinian demands will be that all Israeli building expansion in Judea and Samaria be frozen in order to move forward with negations.

How far Abbas will go in his threats if Israel does not meet his demands remains to be seen but it is presumed the Palestinians have reached a tipping point after almost a year of no negotiations at all. Even the World Bank warned this week that the status quo between the two sides was unsustainable and there was a “high risk” of renewed conflict. It is believed Abbas will give the US one last chance to take a direct role in moving forward with peace negotiations but expectations will be high for a clear path to Palestinian Statehood and that the US will not oppose proposals in the UN Security Council that establish such a path – including resolutions that call for an end to “Israeli occupation”. According to Palestinian sources Secretary of State John Kerry has indicated he is open to moving forward with negotiations but not until they have finalized everything with the Iranian nuclear accords. This time frame is estimated to take another 6 months. FULL REPORT

 

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Millions of Christians Send Clear Message to Hollywood

Posted: 01 Oct 2015 05:44 AM PDT

It’s not often that a film centered on the power of prayer breaks big box-office numbers. But that’s exactly the case with War Room, a new movie that tells the story of a marital crisis overcome by prayer. War Room, made for just $3 million, has now raked in more than $50 million after capturing the No. 1 spot earlier this month. And War Room, from the creators of Courageous, Fireproof and Facing the Giants, is not alone. An influx of family-friendly, faith-based films is hitting the big screen this fall, including Captive, featuring the Emmy-nominated David Oyelowo and Kate Mara. The two star in the faith-based crime drama that opened on Sept. 18, where Oyelowo plays a killer on the run and Mara is his drug-addicted hostage. But underneath the gritty storyline, faith plays a significant role.

Then next month, the football drama Woodlawn, starring Academy Award winner Jon Voight and Sean Astin, follows a remarkable true story about how love and unity, fueled by spiritual revival, overcame racism and hate in Alabama in the early 1970s. Opening Oct. 16, the film is already creating buzz. American Family Association, which often champions for family-friendly entertainment, says the attention to faith-based films this fall is evidence that Christian moviegoers are sending a message about the kind of entertainment they want to see in Hollywood. AFA adds that these faith-based, “good news” films will have an indelible impact on kids, families and society. FULL REPORT

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As Magog Takes The Stage, A Stunned Global Community Struggles For Answers

Posted: 01 Oct 2015 05:38 AM PDT

“I THINK THE RUSSIANS HAVE MADE CLEAR THAT THEY’RE NOT INTERESTED IN PROVOKING A CONFLICT,” WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY JOSH EARNEST SAID.

“Therefore, thou son of man, prophesy against Gog, and say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal: And I will turn thee back, and leave but the sixth part of thee, and will cause thee to come up from the north parts, and will bring thee upon the mountains of Israel: And I will smite thy bow out of thy left hand, and will cause thine arrows to fall out of thy right hand.” Ezekiel 39:1-3 

Vladimir Putin is a man on a mission, and he doesn’t even know it. Early this morning, the Russian parliament approved the use of Russian force in Syria mere hours after Putin’s appearance at the United Nations General Assembly. And in the blink of an eye, Russia instantly became the biggest player and the dominant force in the Middle East. Reaction from the pusillanimous American president Barack Hussein Obama was akin to that of watching Barney Fife attempting to deal with a traffic violation. More and more daily life is starting to resemble a plot line from the Left Behind book series. Seriously.

Obama’s press secretary open his mouth and uttered this amazingly and mind-numbingly ignorant comment: “I think the Russians have made clear that they’re not interested in provoking a conflict,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said. “Their actions thus far indicate that that’s what they believe.” Oh, really now. Hey, guess what? Putin just took Syria after he took Ukraine, and he’s just getting started. He is on a march towards the “grand prize” that the Bible declares they will strive to obtain, and that is to take Israel. Putin is a very smart man, he waited patiently until Syria became so weakened by civil war and sectarian violence that there would be no objection to his arrival.  FULL REPORT

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The Bible and 7 Other Books Banned to Celebrate Blasphemy Rights Day

Posted: 01 Oct 2015 05:33 AM PDT

Not only is Wednesday (Sept. 30) International Blasphemy Rights Day, it’s also midway through Banned Books Week. For millennia, governments and societies have used legal and commercial means to censor ideas and expressions that challenge established beliefs. Here’s a list of books that have been banned around the world for upsetting the status quo.

1. The Bible
Yes, the Bible is full of violence, but that’s not why it’s been banned in many countries. Across Central Asia, publishing, importing and distributing religious literature is restricted to prevent “extremism.” In Malaysia, Malay-language Bibles are prohibited outside the confines of churches to protect “national security.” In North Korea, possessing a Bible is illegalbecause, well, pretty much everything is banned there. Governments often monitor and restrict communities of believers they fear might challenge their rule. They do so by cutting off access to holy scripture and outlawing proselytization, all while pretending to champion freedom of religion or belief in their constitutions. Don’t believe the propaganda. Do keep an eye on Bible balloons dropping the Word of God into hostile territories.

2. The Da Vinci Code
Lebanon banned the Dan Brown thriller in 2004, not for its lack of literary merit but because Catholic leaders took issue with its fictional assertion that (spoiler alert!) Jesus married Mary Magdalene and fathered her child. “Those things are difficult for us to accept, even if it’s supposed to be fiction,” Father Abdou Abu Kasm, then-president of Lebanon’s Catholic Information Centre, told the BBC after the book was pulled from shelves. “Christianity is not about forgiveness to the point of insulting Jesus Christ.” MARCH, a Lebanese civil rights group, lists “The Da Vinci Code,” “Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl” and “Sophie’s Choice” among dozens of books that have been banned in Lebanon. CONTINUE FOR FULL LIST

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Oregon bakery owners refuse to pay damages in gay wedding cake case

Posted: 01 Oct 2015 05:13 AM PDT

UPDATE: The owners of an Oregon bakery are refusing to pay $135,000 in state-ordered damages to a same-sex couple who were denied service. Melissa and Aaron Klein, owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, cited religious beliefs when they refused to bake a wedding cake for Laurel and Rachel Bowman-Cryer more than two years ago. The couple were awarded the damages in July by Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian for emotional suffering, saying the owners had violated the women’s civil rights by discriminating on the basis of their sexual orientation.

They were also slapped with a gag order that prohibited them from speaking publicly about their refusal to participate in or bake wedding cakes for same-sex marriages. The Kleins have filed an appeal of the ruling and are defying the order to pay. They’re claiming financial hardship although crowdfunding efforts have raised more than $500,000 on their behalf, according to The Oregonian.”It’s difficult to understand the Kleins’ unwillingness to pay the debt when they have, very publicly, raised nearly a half million dollars,” labor bureau spokesman Charlie Burr told The Oregonian in an email Wednesday. “They are entitled to a full and fair review of the case, but do not have the right to disregard a legally binding order.” FULL REPORT

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ISIS HQ, command point, ammo depot destroyed in Russian military

Posted: 01 Oct 2015 05:06 AM PDT

The footage shot by drones shows Russian airstrikes on ISIS infrastructure near Idlib and al-Latamna. The bombing of the IS ammunition depot to the southwest of Idlib was carried out after confirmation from several intelligence channels, including air reconnaissance.

The footage clearly shows a large area of impact, created partly by weapons catching fire after the strike. The video also shows a solidly constructed, three-story concrete building lying in ruins after an SU-25 scored a direct hit with FAB-500 bombs. Nearby structures were not affected by the airstrike. The IS outpost was completely obliterated in the raid. FULL REPORT

The post ISIS HQ, command point, ammo depot destroyed in Russian military appeared first on End TIme Head Lines.

 


Our Time is Short

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


What is The Gospel?

God made everything out of nothing, including you and me. His main purpose in creation was to bring him pleasure.

The chief way in which we as humanity do this is through loving, obeying, and enjoying him perfectly.

Instead of this, we have sinned against our loving Creator and acted in high-handed rebellion.

God has vowed that he will righteously and lovingly judge sinners with eternal death.

But God, being merciful, loving, gracious, and just, sent his own son, Jesus Christ, in the likeness of man to live as a man; fulfilling his perfect requirements in the place of sinners; loving, obeying, and enjoying him perfectly.

And further, his son bore the eternal judgment of God upon the cross of Calvary, as he satisfied the eternal anger of God, standing in the place of sinners. God treated Jesus as a sinner, though he was perfectly sinless, that he might declare sinners as perfect.

This glorious transaction occurs as the sinner puts their faith (dependence, trust) in the Lord Jesus Christ as their substitute. God then charges Christ’s perfection to the sinner, and no longer views him as an enemy but instead an adopted son covered in the perfect righteousness of his son.

God furnished proof that this sacrifice was accepted by raising Jesus from the dead.

God will judge the world in righteousness and all of those who are not covered in the righteousness of Christ, depending on him for forgiveness, will be forced to stand on their own to bear the eternal anger of God.

Therefore, all must turn from sin and receive Christ Jesus as Lord.


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


Resource Links

CanIKnowGod.com is a website inspired by LifesGreatestQuestion.com, with new content, images, audio and video that will help you understand more about who God is and how to know Him. The site is mobile responsive and has an infinite scroll which makes for a very user-friendly experience. After you indicate a decision on CanIKnowGod.com, you are directed to a page that details what it means to have a new and transformed life through Jesus Christ. There’s even a Facebook page for daily updates, encouragement and scripture sharing.

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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Supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

19 For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, 20 According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death. (Philippians 1:19-20 KJV)

The ESV translates the passage above as:

19 for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, 20 as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death. (Philippians 1:19-20 ESV)

The NASB translates the passage above as:

19 for I…

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