Monthly Archives: January 2016

January 30-31, 2016 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report (US•World•Christian)

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Top News – 1/31/2016

Satanic group set to lead Phoenix City Council in prayer
A Satanic group is set to deliver an opening prayer at an upcoming meeting of the Phoenix City Council, sparking controversy. The local Satanic Temple will deliver the invocation at the Council’s Feb. 17 meeting after winning approval — and at least one Councilman is calling that a joke, Fox 10 reported Thursday.

The US Mosque Obama Has Chosen For His First Presidential Visit Has Deep Extremist Ties
The Baltimore mosque President Obama has chosen as the first U.S.-based mosque to visit during his presidency has deep ties to extremist elements, including to the Muslim Brotherhood. The White House announced on Saturday that Obama will visit the Islamic Society of Baltimore (ISB) on Wednesday. He has visited several mosques overseas as president but has resisted visiting one in the homeland.

Thousands march in Paris rain to protest state of emergency
Thousands of people marched in the Paris rain on Saturday to denounce plans to renew France’s state of emergency and revoke the French citizenship of dual nationals convicted of terrorism. Human rights groups, politicians and unions joined the march in the French capital, and in other demonstrations around France.

Syria conflict: Deadly blasts near Sayyida Zeinab shrine
At least 45 people have been killed in three blasts near the Shia shrine of Sayyida Zeinab, south of the capital Damascus, Syrian state media say. Scores of people were also reported to have been wounded. The shrine, which is highly revered by Shia Muslims, has been targeted before, most recently in February last year.

Zika: Colombia cases in pregnant women double in a week
The number of pregnant women in Colombia infected with the Zika virus has doubled in a week, officials said. Almost 2,000 pregnant women now have the virus, Colombia’s National Health Institute said, out of the more than 20,000 people infected across Colombia. The mosquito-borne virus has been linked to babies being born with abnormally small brains.

Turkey says Russia violated its airspace near Syria border
Turkey has accused Russia of again violating its airspace and warned it would “face consequences” if such infringements continue. The foreign ministry said a Russian jet flew into its airspace on the border with Syria on Friday. Moscow described the claim as “baseless propaganda”. Tensions between the two countries have been high since November, when Turkey shot down a Russian jet.

Report: Senior Hamas official blames Iranian ‘liars’ for deserting Hamas
Deputy Chairman of Hamas’ political bureau, Musa Abu Marzouk, blamed Iran for lying about financial aid to Hamas, claiming that the Palestinian Islamist movement has not received any Iranian funding since 2009, Asharq al-Awsat reported on Sunday. In a recording of a private conversation…Abu Marzouk is heard saying that “the story is not like Iran presents it… The Iranians are masters of diplomatic wordplay.

Israel would consider invitation to peace talks with Palestinians: spokesman
Israel would consider a French invitation to peace talks with the Palestinians, but believes France has made a mistake by saying it will recognize a Palestinian state if the talks fail, an Israeli government official said on Saturday.

Big Food now highly dependent on aborted fetal tissue for product development
Nearly four years have passed since the Obama administration gave PepsiCo approval to continue its use of aborted human fetal tissue in flavor-enhancing research, despite opposition from its shareholders. The controversial practice came under fire after the Pro-Life group Children of God for Life exposed the food giant’s partnership with Senomyx, a biotech firm that conducts research using aborted fetal cells to develop artificial flavors incorporated into a number of products sold by Kraft Foods, Nestlé and other large food companies.(1)

Russian ICBM Forces Placed On Highest Alert
Russia’s TASS Agency,as reported by Next News Network, is reporting that 10 missile regiments of Russia’s Strategic Missile Force are combat ready and are now positioned at the highest level of alert.

US warship sails by island claimed by China: Pentagon
A US warship sailed within 12 nautical miles of a disputed island in the South China Sea Saturday to assert freedom of navigation, drawing a protest from Beijing, officials said. “We conducted a freedom of navigation operation in the South China Sea earlier tonight,” Pentagon spokesman Jeff Davis said in a statement.

Is Angela Merkel now backtracking on refugees?
German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Saturday attempted to appease vocal critics of her open-door policy for refugees by saying that the asylum seekers from Syria and Iraq would return home once the conflicts are over in the region.

China is cracking down on Christians
One of the most prominent Protestant figures in China, the Rev. Gu Yuese, has been detained, along with his wife, and held incommunicado as part of what Chinese evangelical leaders say is a broad official crackdown in China on what is described as harmful “foreign influences.”


Top Headlines – 1/31/2016

PA announces new UN campaign to renew peace talks

Abbas welcomes French proposal to hold international peace conference

Israel would consider invitation to peace talks with Palestinians: spokesman

Netanyahu looking for excuses to avoid peace with Palestinians, Erekat says

UN chief Ban ‘alarmed’ over Hamas vow to rebuild Gaza tunnels

German paper uses Nazi language to blame Israel for Palestinian terrorism

Three wounded in West Bank shooting attack, terrorist shot dead

Israeli lightly wounded in stabbing attack by Palestinians in Jerusalem

Israel not surprised by US/UK spying but says changes needed

UK official slams Israel after criticizing Rouhani during Holocaust memorial ceremony

Iranian commander: We’re doubling our missile activities

Turkey says Russian jet violated its airspace again, warns of consequences

Erdogan wants to meet Putin after Russian jet violates Turkish airspace

NATO chief urges Russia not to violate NATO airspace again

Syrian opposition says it wants to make peace talks work, test Assad

Madaya: ‘Another 16 starve to death’ in besieged Syrian town

French-speaking jihadist executes ‘apostates’ in IS video

Thousands march in Paris rain to protest state of emergency

Merkel expects most Syrian and Iraqi refugees to return home once conflict is over

Suspected neo-Nazi gangs attack migrants in Sweden

Masked men threaten to attack refugee children in Stockholm

Bishop of London says vicars should grow beards to reach out to Muslims in their community

The US Mosque Obama Has Chosen For His First Presidential Visit Has Deep Extremist Ties

China talks tough after US sail-by of disputed South China Sea island

Rocket Launched In California To Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle Thrusters

Former House Oversight chairman: ‘FBI director would like to indict Clinton and Abedin’

State Dept. Withholding 18 Emails Between Hillary, Obama

Obama Cabinet Member: Timing of Hillary Email News Before Iowa ‘Quite Suspect’

Family of slain Oregon protester challenges FBI account of his death

5.6 magnitude earthquake hits near Lorengau, Papua New Guinea

5.3 magnitude earthquake hits near Lorengau, Papua New Guinea

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Panguna, Papua New Guinea

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Shikotan, Russia

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Pucallpa, Peru

Sinabung volcnao in Indonesia erupts to 14,000ft

Tengger Caldera volcano in Indonesia erupts to 13,000ft

Copahue volcano in Aregentina erupts to 10,000ft

Five dead in ‘very large’ Canada avalanche

Crazy weather remains across the UK – and Storm Henry’s coming next

How the Epidemic of Drug Overdose Deaths Ripples Across America

Mass rally against gay civil unions in Italy capital

Australian Prime Minister says popular vote to decide gay marriage

Thom Rainer Will Mentor You…For $249.97 a Month

Charismatic SBC Pastor Embraces Book of Mormon

Family battles over megachurch founder’s estate

New Video – Kenneth Hagin Exhibits Demon Possession While Attempting To Preach – 33:16

Austrian teacher replaces ‘God’ with ‘Allah’ in song to appeal to Muslim kids


Top News – 1/30/2016

Swarm of Aftershocks in Kamchatka after a Strong Earthquake
A first 7.0 magnitude quake was felt on Saturday in the peninsula with its epicenter 189 kilometers deep in the northeastern direction, followed by a second 6.9 magnitude, causing no casualties or damage, according to a report of civil defense.

Former House Oversight chairman: ‘FBI director would like to indict Clinton and Abedin’
California Congressman Darrell Issa, who previously led an investigation into Benghazi as former chairman of the House Oversight Committee, says the FBI “would like to indict both Huma [Abedin] and Hillary Clinton” for conducting sensitive government business on an unsecure, private email server.

Magnitude 2.1 Earthquake Strikes Directly in Yellowstone Super-Volcano Caldera
According to geologists, Yellowstone erupts every 640,000 years. They determined this by sampling soil. Presently we are now BEYOND 640,000 years since the last major eruption. So, in layman’s terms, it’s overdue.

Storm Gertrude BATTERS UK with 144mph and snow leaving THOUSANDS without power
The storm, which has caused chaos in Scotland and Northern Ireland, hit the south of England yesterday. The Met Office issued a rare red warning yesterday, which means a danger to life.

What Were Guns, Ammo and a Koran Doing at Paris Disneyland?
A man was arrested as he tried to enter a Disneyland Paris hotel with two guns and ammunition in his suitcase. He also had a Koran in his luggage.

Obama nukes Hillary, admits server contained top U.S. secrets
The Obama administration leveled a devastating blow to Hillary Clinton on Friday by admitting for the first time that her personal email server contained the highest levels of classified U.S. intelligence. The White House said 22 emails from former secretary of state’s “home brew” server must be censored from public view when the State Department releases its final batch on Friday.

Why Zika may be as tough to beat as Ebola
She struggles to know what to tell them about the risk they may face. The data is simply not available. What is clear, however, is that the Americas appear to be facing a health crisis on a scale and potential complexity that could be compared to West Africa’s 2014 Ebola outbreak.

Minor earthquake, 3.39 mag was detected near Ferndale in California
A minor earthquake magnitude 3.39 (ml/mb) has occurred on Friday, 251 km W of Ferndale, California. In the past 24 hours, there have been four, in the last 10 days six, in the past 30 days six and in the last 365 days nineteen earthquakes of magnitude 3.0 or greater that has occurred nearby.

7.3 quake & multiple aftershocks strike Russia’s far eastern Kamchatka Region
A strong, deep 7.0-magnitude earthquake rocked Russia’s far eastern Kamchatka peninsula on Saturday, the US Geological Survey reported. The quake hit 106 kilometers north of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatskiy, the capital city of Russia’s Kamchatka Krai. Rescue crews are searching and inspecting buildings,

Stockholm pogrom: Crowd of masked men hunt and beat up non-Swedes
Dozens of masked man went on an anti-immigrant rampage in Stockholm in an apparent retaliation for the stabbing death of a young Swedish woman at a refugee center earlier this week, local media reported. The crowd of some 40 to 50 people went on a violent spree on Friday night at around 9 p.m. local time in and around the Swedish capital’s main railroad station, according to the Aftonbladet daily. They were beating up anyone who didn’t look like ethnic Swede.

Depraved Academia: Connecticut College vs. Kent State
To understand just how depraved today’s college campuses are, compare the treatment of two professors – one defending a Western, pro-American democracy (Israel) and the other suspected of supporting this century’s most gruesome Islamist terror organization, the Islamic State (“ISIS”). Julio Pino, an associate history professor at Kent State University, is currently under investigation by the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security for potential ties to ISIS.

PA announces new UN campaign to renew peace talks
Palestinian Authority (PA) officials are continuing their diplomatic offensive against Israel and are waging a new campaign at the United Nations to revive peace prospects, the PA’s UN envoy Riyad Mansour declared on Friday, according to AFP.

Moderate earthquake 5 mag, 124 km SSW of Lorengau, Papua New Guinea
A moderate earthquake with magnitude 5 (ml/mb) was reported 124 km SSW of Lorengau, Papua New Guinea (77 miles) on Saturday. A tsunami warning has not been issued (Does not indicate if a tsunami actually did or will exist).

Family of slain Oregon protester challenges FBI account of his death
As four armed anti-government protesters held their ground at a U.S. wildlife refuge in Oregon on Friday, the family of a protester killed by police said he seemed to have been shot in the back with his hands up …The grainy footage shows Finicum raising his hands and then turning and flailing his arms. He then lowers his arms to his body and is shot by Oregon State Police troopers, the FBI said.

U.S. warship sails near island claimed by China in South China Sea
A U.S. Navy destroyer sailed within 12 nautical miles of an island claimed by China and two other states in the South China Sea on Saturday to counter efforts to limit freedom of navigation, the Pentagon said. China claims most of the South China Sea, through which more than $5 trillion of world trade is shipped every year. Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, the Philippines and Taiwan have rival claims.

Italian academics call for boycott of Israeli universities
The academic boycott against Israel continues to broaden, with a new petition signed by 168 academics and researchers in Italy calling to suspend all agreements with Israeli universities as well as the Technion, Israel’s Institute of Technology in Haifa.

Madaya: ‘Another 16 starve to death’ in besieged Syrian town
Another 16 people have starved to death in the besieged Syrian town of Madaya since UN aid convoys reached it earlier this month, according to charity Medecins Sans Frontieres. The charity says there are also 33 people in danger of dying. Brice de la Vingne, MSF operations director, said the situation was “totally unacceptable” when people “should have been evacuated weeks ago”.

France considers recognition of a Palestinian state
France will recognize a Palestinian state if its efforts to revive Israeli-Palestinian peace talks at an international conference fail, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Friday. He told French diplomats that the conference will aim to bring together the two parties and their American, European and Arab partners in order “to make happen a two-state solution.”

Richard Dawkins dropped from science event for tweeting video mocking feminists and Islamists
Professor Richard Dawkins has had an invitation to speak at a science event withdrawn by organisers for sharing a “highly offensive” video mocking feminists on Twitter.

France to revive plans for Israeli-Palestinian peace conference
France is looking to quickly revive plans for an international conference to “bring about the two-state solution” to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Friday.

Iran flies unarmed military drone over US aircraft carrier
Iran flew a surveillance drone over a U.S. aircraft carrier and published video of the encounter Friday, the latest in a series of edgy naval incidents between the two countries in the Persian Gulf after the recent nuclear deal.

PETER SCHIFF: We’re going to have a serious recession and negative interest rates before the election
Based on today’s GDP release, it appears that the US economy is slowing but not near any sort of massive collapse. Peter Schiff begs to differ.


Top Headlines – 1/30/2016

France to recognize Palestinian state unless deadlock with Israel broken

France to revive plans for Israeli-Palestinian peace conference

Israel slams French peace plan as encouraging Palestinian intransigence

Spain ‘deeply worried’ over Palestinian deaths from Israel’s use of force

Report: Hamas naval commando dies at sea during ‘jihadi mission’

At Gaza funerals, defiant Haniyeh vows: Hamas to continue building tunnels

As it rebuilds its attack tunnels, Hamas vows it will operate ‘inside the territory of 1948’ in the next round of fighting with Israel

Hundreds of smuggling attempts to Gaza intercepted in 2015

The Arab War Against the Resurrection of the Dead

Communal aliyah model to be adopted nationwide

Obama administration reissues labeling order on West Bank products

Israel ‘angry and disappointed’ over report of Anglo-American spying

Israel, Greece and Cyprus agree to boost regional cooperation

EgyptAir mechanic with ISIS ties planted bomb in Sinai plane crash

ISIS wants own sea power to carry out attacks in Mediterranean, NATO naval chief warns

Is a secret sniper killing off Isil’s high command in Libya?

Kim Davis, Christian Faith and ISIS ‘Triggering an Apocalyptic Showdown’ at GOP Debate

Main Syrian opposition team to head to Geneva ahead of possible negotiations

Syrian rebel splits deepen after failed ‘merger’ with al Qaeda arm

Jewish group in Germany urges action to change Arab refugees’ anti-democratic values

Wary of culture clash, Germans teach refugees their rules

Feds release new evidence, seek link between San Bernardino attack, prior terror plot

State Department warns US nationals against travel to Iran

Suicide, shooting attack on Saudi Shi’ite mosque kills four

Kremlin Demands Explanation for ‘Outrageous’ U.S. Remarks About Putin

US warship sails near South China Sea island claimed by China

Clinton email headaches grow as State Dept. confirms ‘top secret’ files, delays final release

State Department Declares 22 Clinton Emails ‘Top Secret’

Official: Some Clinton emails ‘too damaging’ to release

Former House Oversight chairman: ‘FBI director would like to indict Clinton and Abedin’

Facebook and Instagram ban private gun adverts

Wall Street Rallies to Cap Worst January in 7 Years

Fed will be patient on U.S. policy given global risks: Kaplan

David Cameron Renews Push to Reach E.U. Membership Deal

7.3 quake & multiple aftershocks strike Russia’s far eastern Kamchatka Region

5.3 magnitude earthquake hits near Ovalle, Chile

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Bitung, Indonesia

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Elato, Micronesia

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Ferndale, California

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Lorengau, Papua New Guinea

Colima volcano in Mexico erupts to 23,000ft

Sinabung volcano in Indonesia erupts to 14,000ft

Tengger Caldera volcano in Indonesia erupts to 13,000ft

‘It’s a monster for sure’: Rare, massive sinkhole closes part of Oregon highway

Severe Tropical Cyclone Stan to slam into Western Australia on Saturday night

Millions in drought-hit Ethiopia facing food shortages: UN

What Mystery Illness Grounded Two American Airlines Flights?

Zika Outbreak Epicenter In Same Area Genetically-Modified Mosquitoes Released In 2015

Planned Parenthood Capitalizes on Zika Tragedy to Promote Abortion in Latin America

Planned Parenthood unveils six-figure Clinton ad buy in Iowa

HIV becoming resistant to key drug, study finds

How a selfie obsession could ruin your relationship, according to a psychologist

UK Maoist cult leader Aravindan Balakrishnan jailed for 23 years for raping followers

Satanic group set to lead Phoenix City Council in prayer


Weekend Snapshot

Jan. 30, 2016
Top Stories This Week
Top Opinion
Erick Erickson: In His Own Words
Jonah Goldberg: Iowa Caucuses, a Subsidy for Iowa’s Political Establishment
Hans von Spakovsky: Pay No Attention to What Planned Parenthood Is Doing Behind the Curtain
Victor Davis Hanson: Obama Administration Needs to Abandon Its Petraeus Obsession
More Opinion →
Quote of the Week

“Let me be clear about one thing: There’s only one Savior, and it’s not me. It’s Jesus Christ who came down to earth and died for our sins” —Marco Rubio


REPORTER: DOJ, FBI “SUPER PISSED OFF” at Obama White House Over Clinton Investigation (VIDEO)

 

This is just getting ugly. Is Obama willing to throw all in with Hillary Clinton on this? If he does it will be one of the things that defines his presidency. That’s a big gamble. If this investigation is hung up for political reasons, say just long enough so that Clinton can get the nomination, that will really be pretty rotten and will only further show to the American people that there are rules for the political class and then there are rules for everyone else.

Read More


 

Planned Parenthood unveils six-figure Clinton ad buy in Iowa

We reported before that the largely taxpayer funded organization had not only endorsed Hillary Clinton for president (it has never endorsed anyone before) but was also planning on spending $20 million dollars in battleground states supporting Ms. Clinton. I guess this is the start of that.

Planned Parenthood receives almost a half billion dollars from taxpayers (this is insane to me sorry) to engage in acts which many Americans find deeply abhorrent. How the organization can justify such obvious partisanship in light of their taxpayer funding makes little sense to me.

Read More


Halperin on Clinton Emails: “My White House and FBI Sources Say ‘Something’s Going to Happen’” (Video)

On Morning Joe this morning the gaggle did their best – we know something you don’t know because we are Washington insiders – bit. Scarborough said that the Clinton investigation, according to his sources, has become ” far more advanced than the public knows.”

Will the news – if there is news –  hit before Iowa and New Hampshire? Either way things seem to be getting quite hot for Ms. Clinton.

Read More


Obama To Make First Visit Of His Presidency To A U.S. Mosque To Hold Roundtable

President Obama will make the first visit during his presidency to a U.S. mosque, the White House announced Saturday, part of the administration’s push to promote religious tolerance at a time when rhetoric linking Islam with terrorism is growing.

“I will stand with the Muslims should the political winds shift in an ugly direction.”Barack Hussein Obama

When was the last time you ever heard of Barack Obama going to visit a Christian church to hold a roundtable on religious freedom? When was the first time? Why do people think Obama is a Muslim? For precisely this reason. He has no connection of any kind to the Christian church, never mentions Christianity in favorable terms, and at times outright trashes Christian values and traditions. But when he speaks of Islam, it is only ever with the most glowing speech and complimentary phraseology he can muster. If it walks like a duck…

On Wednesday, the president will visit the Islamic Society of Baltimore, a sprawling community center in the city’s western suburbs that serves thousands of people with a place of worship, a housing complex and schools,according to its website. It is one of the Mid-Atlantic region’s largest Muslim centers and describes itself as aspiring “to be the anchor of a growing Muslim community with diverse backgrounds, democratically governed, relating to one another with inclusiveness and tolerance, and interacting with neighbors in an Islamic exemplary manner.”

Obama Compares Christian Crusades to Modern Day Radical Islam

The president is making the visit “to celebrate the contributions Muslim Americans make to our nation and reaffirm the importance of religious freedom to our way of life,”  a White House official wrote in an email Saturday. “The President believes that one of our nation’s greatest strengths is our rich diversity and the very idea that Americans of different faiths and backgrounds can thrive together – that we’re all part of the same American family. As the President has said, Muslim Americans are our friends, and neighbors; our co-workers, and sports heroes – and our men and women in uniform defending our country.

“The sweetest sound I know is the Muslim call to prayer” – Barack Hussein Obama

At the Islamic Society, the president will hold a roundtable discussion with community members, the official said.

The visit will be part of the tightrope-walking Obama has done during his presidency around Islam.

For years, Muslim Americans have lobbied him to visit a mosque, citing Islamophobia. At the same time, a segment of Obama’s critics have said since he took office that he is a Muslim pretending to be Christian, and that he plays down the religious aspect of Muslim extremism. The visit comes in the last year of his presidency.


 

American Pastor Saeed Abedini Speaks of His Imprisonment in Iran: ‘They Beat Me Very Badly’   Jan 26, 2016 11:08 am

Abedini Screenshot-compressedASHEVILLE, North Carolina — An American pastor who was imprisoned in Iran for over three years is now speaking about his time behind bars, acknowledging that he and others were beaten by Iranian authorities. “In interrogation, once they beat me very badly,” Saeed Abedini told Fox’s Greta Van Susteren on Monday, “because they wanted me to write something , which I…

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Ken Ham Wins Discrimination Suit Over Kentucky’s Denial of Sales Tax Rebate for ‘Ark Encounter’   Jan 27, 2016 10:23 am

HamPETERSBURG, Ky. — The Creation ministry Answers in Genesis (AiG) has won its discrimination suit against officials in the state of Kentucky for denying its Ark Encounter project participation in the state’s sales tax rebate incentive program. As previously reported, the state of Kentucky has an incentive called the Tourism Development Act, where new…

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Texas Grand Jury Indicts Man Who Recorded Planned Parenthood Baby Body Parts Videos   Jan 25, 2016 07:06 pm

Daleiden-compressedAUSTIN, Texas (Associated Press) — A Houston grand jury investigating undercover footage of Planned Parenthood found no wrongdoing Monday by the abortion provider and instead indicted anti-abortion activists involved in making the videos that provoked outrage among Republican leaders nationwide. David Daleiden, founder of the Center for Medical Progress, was…

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‘Born in the Wrong Species?’ Woman Claims She Is a Cat Trapped in a Human Body   Jan 29, 2016 07:50 am

Nano-compressedOSLO, Norway — A woman in Norway claims that she was “born in the wrong species” and asserts that she is really a cat trapped in a human body. Nano, 20, from Oslo recently appeared in a news broadcast posted to the NRK P3 Verdens Rikeste Land YouTube channel, wearing fake cat ears and a tail as she asserted, “I’ve been a cat all my life.” “I realized I was a…

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Donald Trump Boasts to Christian Students: ‘I Could Shoot Somebody and Wouldn’t Lose Any Voters’   Jan 24, 2016 11:42 am

Trump shoot-compressedSIOUX CENTER, Iowa — In his characteristic braggadocio form, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump on Saturday told students at Dordt College, a school that identifies itself as an institution for those “who are interested in a biblical, Christ-centered education,” that he’s so liked, that even if he shot someone in the street, it still wouldn’t effect his…

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Liberty University Alumni Express Concerns About Falwell After ‘Soul Selling’ Trump Endorsement   Jan 26, 2016 07:38 pm

Falwell-compressedLYNCHBURG, Va. — Liberty University alumni and others are expressing their disappointment and “embarrassment” after the president of what heralds itself as the world’s largest Christian university formerly endorsed the thrice-married, unbridled-tongued, professing evangelical Republican candidate Donald Trump for president on Tuesday. “I am proud to offer my…

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Trump Blames Tony Perkins for Feeding ‘Two Corinthians’ Line to Him in Notes Given by Family Group President   Jan 25, 2016 02:42 pm

Tony Perkins Credit Gage SkidmorePhoto Credit: Gage Skidmore It now is apparent that Donald Trump was not citing his own notes during his recent visit to Liberty University, but rather was reading from cue notes given to him by Tony Perkins of Family Research Council, who suggested that he cite Scripture from 2 Corinthians to connect with the educational institution. Some media outlets…

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Donald Trump Attends ‘Gay-Affirming’ Presbyterian ‘Church’ in Iowa Days Before Caucus   Jan 25, 2016 11:59 am

MuscatineMUSCATINE, Iowa — Whether or not he was aware that it was not the same branch of Presbyterianism he claims to follow, Donald Trump obtained a lesson in “humility” during a reading at a “gay-affirming” Presbyterian USA congregation on Sunday, followed by a sermon from a woman pastor that included talk on welcoming refugees. “We talked about humility in church…

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University President on Why Trump Not Invited: ‘I Refuse to Let Desire to Win Trump Moral Compass’   Jan 28, 2016 11:24 am

Piper-compressedBARTLESVILLE, Okla. — The president of a university in Oklahoma has released a post about why he will not be the next professing Christian university president to invite Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump to address students. Dr. Everett Piper of Oklahoma Wesleyan University expressed his thoughts this week on the university website in response to…

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‘Harbinger’ Jonathan Cahn ‘Blessed’ to Join Prosperity Preacher Kenneth Copeland on TV Broadcast   Jan 27, 2016 06:31 pm

Cahn-compressedFORT WORTH, Texas — A well-known rabbi known for his books on “The Harbinger” and “The Mystery of the Shemitah” recently recorded a week-long series of broadcasts with controversial prosperity preacher Kenneth Copeland, which are airing this week on national television. Jonathan Cahn, a Messianic Jew, appeared on “The Believer’s Voice of Victory” to talk about…

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10 Ways to Study the Bible

by Erin Davis

Searching for some ways to study God’s Word in 2016? Here are ten practical ideas.

Start a Chain That Will Change Your Life

by Erin Davis

Today, let’s start a chain reaction that will change our lives in 2016.

Pursuing the King as Your First Priority

by Leslie Ludy

It’s easy to live on autopilot—to be apathetic toward the Word of God. But cultivating a thriving relationship with Christ is so worth the work. Here’s some help.

How Reading the Whole Bible Changed My Life Forever

by Jennifer Case Cortez

Jenn read all sixty-six books, 1,189 chapters, and 31,173 verses of the Bible, and it changed her life forever. Here’s how it could change yours.


On Mortification

I would suggest that most believers today would have no clue as to what my title refers to, and if they did, they would be mortified to see me writing about it! But I better begin in the beginning. What do words like mortuary, mortal, post-mortem and mortify share in common? They all come from the Latin root word mort, meaning death.

Theologically speaking, mortification has to do with putting to death sin in the believer’s life. Christians of all people should not be ignorant of this term, even though admittedly newer Bible translations do not use such terminology very much anymore.

Consider a key use of the word (as a verb) in the KJV: “For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live” Romans 8:13. The NIV puts it this way: “For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live.”

Another use of the older term in the KJV can be found in Colossians 3:4-6: “When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory. Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry: For which things’ sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience.”

The NIV translates it this way: “When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.”

The idea is clear: to put to death sin as we seek to grow in holiness and sanctification. And like sanctification, it is a cooperative effort between the believer and God. One of our great contemporary theologians, J. I. Packer has written on these themes often.

Plenty of his books could be cited here, but an earlier volume of his is well worth noting. I refer to his 18 Words (Christian Focus, 1981, 2008). As the title implies, this brief (200 page) volume examines 18 key theological terms which every believer needs to know and understand.

Thus he discusses terms like ‘revelation,’ ‘sin,’ ‘grace,’ ‘faith,’ and ‘justification’. He has a chapter each on ‘sanctification’ and ‘mortification’. Let me quote from a bit of each, especially emphasising the cooperative nature of these aspects of the Christian life.

As to sanctification and holiness, he notes how these are on the one hand, gifts given to us by God, but on the other, things we are called upon to grow in and exercise. He says this in his chapter on sanctification:

Augustine’s famous prayer, ‘Give what you command, and command what you will,’ expressed a profound insight into biblical theology. God does indeed give what He commands; the holiness which He required of His people is also His gift to them. God Himself sanctifies sinners….
The New Testament makes it clear that this gift has two aspects. The first aspect is relational and positional. In this sense, God sanctifies the sinner once and for ever when He brings them to Himself, separating them from the world, delivering them from sin and Satan, and welcoming them into His fellowship. In this sense, therefore, the meaning of sanctification approximates to that of justification, adoption, and new birth….
The second aspect of the gift is recreative and progressive. In this sense, sanctification is the gracious work of th holy Spirit in the believer throughout his earthly life whereby he grows in grace (1 Pet. 2;2; 2 Pet. 3:18; Eph. 4:14f.)
In this sanctifying work, God calls for our cooperation, as He ‘works in [us] to will and t act according to his good purpose’ (Phil. 2;13)….
Certainly, holiness is by faith in Jesus – all our strength for holiness must be drawn from Him by faith and prayer, for without him we can do nothing (1 John 15:5ff.) But equally holiness is by effort; for when we have knelt to acknowledge our weakness and ask for help, we are then to stand on our own feet and strive against sin (Heb. 12:4), resist the devil (Jam. 4:7), and fight the good fight of faith (1 Tim. 6:12; cf. Eph. 6:10-18). Holiness is no more by faith without effort than it is by effort without faith. It is important to keep the balance here; it has not always been kept.

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And in his chapter on mortification he also writes about this dual action: “It is true that we could not mortify sin by our own unaided efforts; but it is no less true that the Spirit will not mortify sin in us without our co-operation. He will prosper our striving, but He will not bless our sloth. We ourselves, then, must attack sin; and the outcome of the conflict will depend on whether we fight wisely and make good use of our available strength.”

Says Packer “Mortification is war,” His whole chapter on this is well worth reading. And if you do, you will see just how much he is indebted to the Puritans in general, and John Owen in particular. Let me speak briefly about Owen (1616–1683), one of our greatest Puritan theologians.

Carl Trueman said that Owen “was without doubt not only the greatest theologian of the English Puritan movement but also one of the greatest European Reformed theologians of his day, and quite possibly possessed the finest theological mind that England ever produced.”

John Owen spoke much on mortification. One set of his sermons on the topic was published as The Mortification of Sin in 1656. Packer says this about him and the book: “I owe more, I think, to John Owen than to any other theologian, ancient or modern, and I am sure I owe more to his little book on mortification than to anything else he wrote.”

There would be various editions of this great work available. If you have the Christian Focus publication, you will get a terrific 12-page introduction by Packer. Let me quoting parts of this for you (although Packer would insist I quote Owen instead!). Packer offers four reasons why today’s Christians seem so oblivious to and uninterested in such things as the mortification of sin:

First, the holiness of God is insufficiently emphasized. In Scripture, and in Owen, the holiness of ‘the holy One’ is constantly underlined…
Second, the significance of motivating desire is in sufficiently emphasized. In Scripture, and in Owen, desire is the index of one’s heart, and the motivation is the decisive test of whether actions are good or bad…
Third, the need for self-scrutiny is insufficiently emphasized. In Scripture, and in Owen, much stress is laid on the deceitfulness of the fallen human heart, and the danger of self-ignorance, with the result that one thinks well of one’s heart and life when God, the Searcher of hearts, is displeased with both…
Fourth, the life-changing power of God is insufficiently emphasized. In Scripture, and in Owen, subjective salvation means in the most literal sense a change of heart: a moral change that is rooted in a sustained exercise of faith, hope and love, whereby the power of Christ’s death to deliver from the domination by sinful desire, and the power of the Holy Spirit to induced Christ-like attitudes and actions are constantly proved.

Mortification may be a forgotten Christian teaching today for most believers, but it is thoroughly biblical and one which we must resurrect if we ever hope to see the church of Jesus Christ become all it is meant to be. Let me conclude with the words of Owen:

“Do you mortify; do you make it your daily work; be always at it whilst you live; cease not a day from this work; be killing sin or it will be killing you.”


 

Selfie Righteousness

Blogger and Bible teacher Erin Benziger observes that many professing Christians are ignorantly utilizing social media for the celebration of “self.” Erin points out that while Christians may wish to appear spiritual and humble, we ultimately end up exclaiming, “Hey! Look at me! Look at how amazing I am! Look at how much more spiritual I am than you! Look at how much cuter my children are than yours; I must be more blessed! Look at how much more precious my ‘quiet time’ is!”

Erin begins her piece…

Selfies Christians truly are a unique bunch. We are in the world, but not of it. We strive to serve our Lord Jesus Christ well in the midst of a world that is hostile to Him and to His message. We know we have been called out of this world because, in reality, we are citizens of a heavenly kingdom.

And yet, we do not hide our faith. We do not silence our message. We desire that the world know we are Christians so that it may hear the message of repentance and forgiveness of sins found in Jesus Christ alone. So at times we must utilize the tools of the world in order to aid us in our mission. And this is okay, so long as the execution of the task does not subsequently result in sin or tarnish the name of Christ.

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RNS’ ‘5 Faith Facts’ series looks at religion and 2016 election contenders

RNS’ ‘5 Faith Facts’ series looks at religion and 2016 election contenders

Posted on January 30, 2016 by Religion News

(RNS) Find the religious side of the frontrunners in both parties, now that primary season gets serious with the Iowa caucus.

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Tim Tebow Focuses on Helping Others, Asks Americans to Stop Idolizing Celebrities, Athletes

Tim Tebow Focuses on Helping Others, Asks Americans to Stop Idolizing Celebrities, Athletes

Posted on January 29, 2016 by Gospel Herald

The NFL has not been kind to Tim Tebow. As the football star attempted to re-enter the league, his journey was cut short even before the regular season started. Tebow, who had been a favorite to dominate the NFL once he got drafted, failed to get signed as the third quarterback of the Philadelphia Eagles. Although the Christian athlete tried to overcome all the obstacles along the way, the DeMarco Murray still found him lacking. That is, former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly pointed o

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Billy Graham Shares Encouraging Thoughts On Angels: 'Some Day in Heaven We'll Realize How Much They've Done For Us'

Billy Graham Shares Encouraging Thoughts On Angels: ‘Some Day in Heaven We’ll Realize How Much They’ve Done For Us’

Posted on January 29, 2016 by Gospel Herald

Evangelist Billy Graham has shared his thoughts on one of the Bible’s most mysterious beings — angels — revealing that the celestial beings are a significant part of a Christian’s life even though they are invisible to the naked eye.

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Prayers in Public High School Football Games Supported by Majority, Indicates New Survey

Prayers in Public High School Football Games Supported by Majority, Indicates New Survey

Posted on January 29, 2016 by Gospel Herald

Nearly three-quarters, specifically 73 percent, of the public believe football coaches at public high schools should be allowed to lead their players in Christian prayer during games, while only about one-quarter, or 24 percent, say they should not, according to a new Public Religion Research Institute survey released Thursday.

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COMMENTARY: Does the ERLC represent the SBC?

COMMENTARY: Does the ERLC represent the SBC?

Posted on January 29, 2016 by Christian Examiner

A provocative look at whether Russell Moore, the president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, is the mouthpiece of the 16 million member Southern Baptist Convention, comprised of over 40,000 US-based churches, or whether the two could be at odds.

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To the Confused, Apathetic, and Undecided Christian Voters

To the Confused, Apathetic, and Undecided Christian Voters

Posted on January 29, 2016 by Christianity Today

Our political engagement matters to our country, our neighbors, and God.

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Religion in America: An Interview With Greg Smith of the Pew Research Center (Part 2)

Religion in America: An Interview With Greg Smith of the Pew Research Center (Part 2)

Posted on January 29, 2016 by Christianity Today

Pew researcher says neither Christianity nor Evangelicalism are dying in the U.S.

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Is She / He 'The One'? 9 Questions to Help You Know

Is She / He ‘The One’? 9 Questions to Help You Know

Posted on January 29, 2016 by Crosswalk

Choosing “the one” is an outrageously important decision. Your spouse is not only your romantic partner in life…but also the mom or dad to your children and your life-long companion.

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Christians, We Aren't Promised Success

Christians, We Aren’t Promised Success

Posted on January 29, 2016 by Crosswalk

The American dream is focused on the idea of personal success…but is that Jesus promises us if we follow him? Not at all. He has so much more for us.

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3 Ways to Live Holy Lives in a Hook-Up Culture

3 Ways to Live Holy Lives in a Hook-Up Culture

Posted on January 29, 2016 by Crosswalk

How can we help our young women live holy lives in a &hook-up& culture?

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Get Your Popcorn Ready, Our Top 10 Movies are Here

Get Your Popcorn Ready, Our Top 10 Movies are Here

Posted on January 28, 2016 by Crosswalk

The Academy didn’t nominate our Number One movie for Best Picture, but that’s okay. A Top 10 movies list compiled by a panel of eight believers from CrosswalkMovies.com SHOULD look a little different. Get your popcorn ready!

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Trump candidacy: Jeffress, Falwell, Moore weigh in

Trump candidacy: Jeffress, Falwell, Moore weigh in

Posted on January 28, 2016 by Baptist Press

With attention focused on Donald Trump surrounding his withdrawal from a Jan. 28 Republican presidential debate, Southern Baptists remain divided regarding his candidacy.

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Pew Poll: 40% Americans Say Too Little Religious Faith, Prayer Expressed by Political Leaders, Candidates

Pew Poll: 40% Americans Say Too Little Religious Faith, Prayer Expressed by Political Leaders, Candidates

Posted on January 28, 2016 by Gospel Herald

Results from a new Pew Research Center survey released Wednesday (Jan. 27) indicate several of the U.S. presidential candidates currently leading the polls of both parties are not perceived as intensely religious individuals.

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Most Pastors Aren't Voting Trump as Primaries Approach

Most Pastors Aren’t Voting Trump as Primaries Approach

Posted on January 28, 2016 by Christianity Today

Protestant church leaders are still undecided or pick other candidates, according to LifeWay Research.

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Trump is a huge ‘loser’ with GOP Protestant Pastors

Trump is a huge ‘loser’ with GOP Protestant Pastors

Posted on January 28, 2016 by Religion News

(RNS) If they voted today, 4 in 10 GOP Protestant pastors would pick &undecided.& Democrats picked Hillary Clinton.

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Obama to visit Baltimore mosque with extremist ties

President Obama will pay a visit to his first US mosque this week in order to “celebrate the contributions Muslim Americans make to our nation and reaffirm the importance of religious freedom to our way of life.”

There’s only one problem; the mosque the president has chosen to honor with his presence – the Islamic Society of Baltimore (ISB) – has a history of ties to extremist Muslim groups, including the Muslim Brotherhood.

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10 reasons ‘Jesus Calling’ is a dangerous book

By Warren Smith

In 2004, in one of her rare, carefully staged interviews, Sarah Young was asked by the Christian Broadcasting Network “How did you learn to ‘dialogue’ with God?” She answered that it was from reading the book “God Calling”:

“My journey began with a devotional book (‘God Calling’) written in the 1930s by two women who practiced waiting in God’s Presence, writing the messages they received as they ‘listened.'” (parentheses hers)

Also, in the original introduction to “Jesus Calling” that stood from 2004-2013, Young specifically praised “God Calling” as “a treasure to me.” However, “The Encyclopedia of New Age Beliefs,” published by Christian publisher Harvest House, describes “God Calling” as a channeled New Age book that was spiritually dictated by a deceptive spirit pretending to be the real Jesus Christ.

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Michael Reagan: My Father Would Be ‘Absolutely Appalled’ By Trump as GOP Nominee

Donald Trump’s comparison of his “conversion” to conservative as similar to that of Ronald Reagan distorts the real estate billionaire’s long liberal history, the son of the late president tells Newsmax TV.

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A Call to Christians in Perilous Times

“I talk to secular people in America all the time who instinctively in their gut feel things are going in a bad direction. But they don’t know the Lord, and they don’t know what to do about it,” he said. “As believers, we have a special responsibility to be that voice and to educate people.”

As Christians share God’s Word and His promises in these dark times, doors can be opened for others to find security in Christ.

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Are You Feeling the “Bern?” What YOU Need To Know About Socialism

“Socialism is particularly dangerous because it’s so perfectly suited for the modern era. It’s the ultimate “miracle” product: it’s “nice,” it’s “fair,” it’ll make you feel good about yourself, it’ll “help” people who “deserve it” by taking things away from people who “have so much” they’ll barely miss it. It sounds wonderful, doesn’t it? But, like most products with sleazy salesmen and hidden track records, the promises socialism makes are all a mirage.

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How Strong Delusion is Setting the Final Stage – Part 1

Jan Markell, Eric Barger and Michele Bachmann spend the hour talking about the strong delusion that has been poured out on the earth and how this is setting the final stage. It has unleashed absolute evil but the three remind listeners that God remains in control and the events are fulfilling some predicted scenarios in the Bible. We should look up rather than be in despair. Part 2 of the discussion is next week. We use the mobile app found at http://www.oneplace.com.

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President of the World

By Matt Ward

One commentator famously quipped of Obama as president that he never really started governing, because he never really stopped campaigning. This, apparently, is still the case today as his second term draws to a close.

It is the biggest, most talked about secret of the last few weeks; Obama apparently wants to become the next Secretary General of the United Nations. In 2017, Ban Ki Moon’s current term leading this international body comes to an end and Obama, if reports and all the “chatter” are to be believed, harbors genuine aspirations towards this role.

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FOX ripped for putting positive spin on evil

FOX Broadcasting is being criticized for a new television drama that sympathetically portrays Satan as a likable, caring person.

The show Lucifer premiered January 25 on the FOX television channel. “It’s only a matter of time until being bad looks so good,” touts the program website.

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Economic House of Cards – Hal Lindsey

Apple Inc. made an $18.4 billion profit in just the fourth quarter of 2015. It was the most profitable quarter by any corporation in U.S. history, beating Apple’s own record from a year ago. Yet, in the last six months, shares in the company have fallen almost 20%.

The Chinese government claims its economy is still growing at almost 7% per year. But I’m not sure anyone believes them. As of this writing, Chinese markets are down 24% this year, and we’re still in January.

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Fatal Attraction

Several reasons. First of all, 20 years into the seeker-friendly model, research indicates that the seeker- friendly model doesn’t really work. Churches have gotten bigger—nearly a thousand churches in the US now meet the definition of a mega-church (with at least 2000 people in attendance on Sunday morning), but they have gotten bigger in the same way that lots of things have gotten bigger. Crowds go where the hype is and there is a natural process of attrition and consolidation.

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The New Tolerance Must Crumble, Says Don Carson

The New Tolerance Must Crumble, Says Don CarsonMINNEAPOLIS — Have we already forgotten Kim Davis? “It shows how quickly the news cycles spin things out and leave them in a dust heap in the rearview mirror,” said theologian Don Carson. “A bare six months ago the nation was full of talk about ‘the woman from Kentucky.’”

Davis, 50, that “woman from Kentucky,” as some may remember, is county clerk for Rowan County. Her story, said Carson, is worth pulling from the heap and revisiting as an opportunity for believers to think through complex issues of Christian faithfulness in a declining culture.

Here’s a brief dust-off.

In its historic ruling on Obergefell this summer, in a hotly contested 5–4 decision, the Supreme Court pronounced the right to legal “marriage” is guaranteed to same-sex couples by the U.S. Constitution. Out of conscience, Davis refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, even to her gay friends. “I can’t put my name on a license that doesn’t represent what God ordained marriage to be,” she said at the time. Such so-called “marriage” is not marriage.

Davis, a Pentecostal, eventually decided not to grant any marriage licenses under her name, then was ordered by a judge to resume. When she defied, she spent five days in prison. In the process, commentators zeroed in on Davis and hit her from every side, demanding she resign, or comply, or keep resisting, or learn somehow to accommodate to the pressure. She eventually allowed assistants to grant licenses and later a form was issued that removed Davis’s name altogether.

To some, Davis became an icon of personal sacrifice in the protection of civil rights. To others, Davis became an iconic villain who was trampling the civil rights of the gay community. To ACLU attorneys, Davis’s activities were “a stamp of animus against gay people.” Yet to some conservatives, Davis’s actions were equated with Rosa Parks.

To some Christians, she quickly became an icon for religious liberty, meeting with prominent politicians in public and even Pope Francis in private.

Overnight, Davis became so iconic in America that she is now simply “the Woman from Kentucky,” the title of Carson’s message this week at the Bethlehem 2016 Conference for Pastors and Church Leaders. Carson stepped back into the froth of the controversy, and into an inescapably tangled mess of civil complexities and biblical paradigms, in order to draw out essential lessons for Christians in America. He focused on three lessons in particular: the loss of moral consensus, the expression of a “new tolerance,” and the rise of a “new authenticity.”

1. The Loss of Moral Consensus

One major lesson Carson takes from the Davis controversy is that America is clearly a nation that has “progressively moved away from whatever Judeo-Christian-Deist roots that it once had.” We are increasingly “a nation of millions who vote at once without any distinctive Christian contributions or commitments, voting for things that we will find abominable. We are not there yet, but that is the direction in which things are going.”

Democracy is no failsafe from this moral decline. “We must stop thinking about democracy as a guarantor of godliness. We must stop thinking about democracy as an intrinsic good. Democracy is in some ways the best way of changing governments without bloodshed.”

But it’s not perfect. “We are sinners. And if you have a lot of sinners voting, then you have a lot of sinners voting. That is what you have.” Sinners voting without a certain moral consensus.

“It is not for nothing,” Carson stressed, “that the founders of the nation were convinced that if you lost a broad sweeping moral consensus, then you would inevitably have more and more laws. You can be a nation of fewer laws, as long as there is moral consensus. But once you lose the moral consensus, you must have more laws to keep people from tearing out each other’s throats.”

This loss of moral consensus, this rise in new laws, brings along another important cultural turn.

2. The Rise of “New Tolerance”

Along with a loss of moral consensus, our culture is challenged to wrestle with complex moral dilemmas in a reasonable and clearheaded way. Instead, “we increasingly argue by shibboleth and anger, and if you try to argue a certain case regarding, let’s say, homosexual marriage, then you are easily and quickly dismissed as a bigot.”

Carson cited one Seattle Times headline: “Religious liberty looks a lot like intolerance from here.” Then cited one editorial that insisted: “In a homophobic political stunt, poorly veiled as religious beliefs, Davis denied marriage licenses to LGBT couples.” The statement was made without engaging her governing principle, and offered nothing about her First Amendment rights. “The whole thing was dismissed as a hate-filled political stunt — ‘a homophobic political stunt.’ It is so difficult to engage.”

This line, attributed to Voltaire, can be used to measure tolerance: “I may hate what you believe, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” Though Carson doubts the origin of the statement, he stands on its value.

The “old tolerance” agreed with Voltaire. “It was helpful to allow people to dissent from the accepted norms of society, partly because the free discussion meant that there was more likelihood of coming to consensus and truth rather than by way of squelching alternative points of view. Therefore, let the disagreement roll on.”

Here is where the loss of moral consensus comes into play. The old tolerance worked, because the old tolerance was “parasitic.” In other words, “It fed on a broader ethical, moral schema. That is to say: Whether you are talking about tolerance in the Roman government or in the Hittite Empire or in the High Middle Ages, there is already a schema that is largely accepted in society for what is right and wrong.”

Thus, the old tolerance was merely a matter of how much you can allow deviation, of “how much politically or judicially or even socially you can allow deviation from that accepted norm.” The old tolerance was possible because the norms were in place. “That is why tolerance of the old sort was a parasitic virtue. It was parasitic on the givenness of whatever the norms were in that particular culture.”

The “new tolerance” finds Voltaire’s statement intolerant. The new tolerance eliminates all possibility of declaring something as wrong or sinful. To hate what someone believes is now manifest bigotry. “The only thing that you are allowed to hate is intolerance as they define it, which shows that the whole system is, in some way or other, logically self-defeating.” On top of that, Carson stresses, “it becomes intellectually bankrupting, because it becomes impossible to talk about ideas. They are automatically black-listed under the rubric intolerant.”

The result is that, instead of encouraging differing opinions and discussion and engagement, the new tolerance, “flattens out and squashes and hammers away anything that is outside the ‘plausibility structure’ (Berger) of what is currently going on in society. Then worse, that form of tolerance gets elevated to the supreme virtue. Instead of being parasitic on a whole lot of other givens, it becomes the supreme virtue in itself. And then the whole thing falls apart for want of consistency. It becomes really quite ridiculous.”

3. The Rise of “New Authenticity”

With the loss of moral consensus, which anchors the discussion of tolerance, the new tolerance opens up to a “new” authenticity. Carson points to Charles Taylor’s monumental study A Secular Age, and particularly his insights into the new “age of authenticity,” as he calls it.

In sum, Carson explained, the new authenticity means “you are authentic in this age of authenticity if you are consistent with the choices that you yourself make. If you live out your life consistently, in line with the choices that you yourself make, then you are an authentic person. If instead you succumb to the morality that you inherit from your parents or to religious authority or to government structures — even though it is not really yours, nor what you prefer — then you are not living an authentic life.”

To be authentic means “to make your own choices and stick with them even if they are stupid choices in the eyes of some people.”

Thus, “the good that I achieve in life is bound up not with how much I serve others, or how much I have obeyed God, or how much I have maintained the family tradition, or how much I have served my aged grandmother, or whatever. It is bound up with how authentically I live. And that authenticity is bound up with the freedom of my choice to do what I jolly-well please and to live my life in that fashion. That is widely viewed and praised in our media, our plays, our films, so many things in this secular age.”

Responding and Moving Forward

First, we should labor to “expose the built-in inadequacies of the new tolerance.” Carson was clear: “The new tolerance is wicked and stupid. It is morally bankrupt. And in the kindest possible ways, we need to keep showing that that emperor has no clothes.”

Carson is doing this very thing in his addresses on secular college campuses where he addresses the “new tolerance,” and he finds that hundreds show up to listen, including academics, not just the undergraduates. “And then in the discussion afterwards, that many had never considered that the stances that they were taking were themselves intrinsically intolerant to those who disagreed with their particular views of tolerance.”

Second, we must self-consciously return to the older tolerance. We must “preserve the right to say that something is right or wrong without becoming mean and nasty.” We must not become arrogant of our Christian morals or triumphalistic in our online writing and engagement in social media.

“It is a strange, strange world in which, on the one hand, Donald Trump can get a lot of traction precisely because he is so outrageous. And other parts of society hate all the outrageousness of it, too. They long for a civil politics that bespeaks a little more courtesy and respect. We are going to have to recapture the high ground of bold declaration of truth mingled with courtesy.”

Third, we must preach and teach the biblical worldview. “Although the digital world wants us to answer only in one-liners, we cannot build a whole worldview on one-liners. You can reflect a worldview in a one-liner, but it is very hard to teach a worldview in one-liners.”

The church must recapture a high view of biblical exegesis that moves naturally into worldview discussions and then addresses issues like homosexual marriage. Later, when asked to explain, Carson said when it comes to addressing the issues of our day, like homosexual marriage, we will not make headway without an overarching worldview. Thus, he challenges leaders by saying, “In my view, one of the big gaps in modern evangelicalism, including the popular Reformed branch, is the low ability to move from biblical text and exposition to worldview structures and formation and theology. To my mind, that is one of the biggest needs of the time.”

Fourth, do not be surprised by conflict. Christians should see in Scripture many texts that presuppose our persecution, including a promise from Jesus himself (John 15:20). Opposition from the world is normative for the church. “Indeed, according to Philippians 1:29, God has graciously granted us both faith and opposition — both faith and opposition are granted by God to us as a privilege.”

In other words, since opposition from the world is normative, “we have lived, really, as an aberration from much of that kind of thing in much of the western world — and now that persecution is closing in on us again. And it has the salutary effect of removing quite a lot of nominal Christianity. But these things should not surprise us. They should increasingly be worn as badges of honor.”

Fifth, we must not flinch at proclaiming the absolutes of Scripture. No matter the cultural pressures we feel, or the labels of intolerance or bigotry that get applied to us, we cannot blush at the hard texts and hard themes of Scripture, like the eternal conscious judgment of hell. “We are going to have to learn to teach and preach the absolutes of Scripture, even when they are unpalatable. We must teach and preach them as attractively as we can, but without any flinching or apologizing.”

Sixth, civil issues in the media are incredibly complex, so allow room for Christian disagreement. Whether or not “the woman from Kentucky” handled herself properly in every detail is up for question, but one lesson for us all is that believers in these situations must be convinced of certain actions in their own minds.

Carson warns that we all live within “a hierarchializing of moral values and of truth claims in Scripture.” And because of this, “I suspect that in the Christian environment we must acknowledge that some such decisions belong in the — let each person be rightly persuaded and is fully persuaded in his or her own mind category (Romans 14:1, 5).”

Especially in our confessional circles, we are tempted to hold all our convictions with equal resolve. And yet Paul presupposes there is going to be division in the church on some moral issues of the day. In the end, “there is a hierarchializing of beliefs in Scripture, and sometimes Christians are going to come out on slightly different angles with respect to gun laws or how to handle a county clerk’s job in Kentucky.” We must learn to practice the “old tolerance” with our brothers and sisters in Christ.

Seventh, we must not lose our gospel priorities. These priorities trump all the rhetoric of politics and all the debates in the news. “You can’t win Muslims to Christ unless you love them. And you can’t win gay people to Christ unless you love them. You can’t win people of the opposite political party unless you love them. And we are all morally obligated to make the gospel clear as a first priority.”

We must guard ourselves and we must “so avoid investing our energy, our heat, our passion, into preserving our understanding of what the republic should be that we give the impression that the well-being of the republic is more important than the glory of Christ and the furthering of the gospel.” It is not. And if we fail here, we will “contribute to the image of Christians as cranky, bad tempered traditionalists who are simply trying to preserve their own power.”

The closing takeaway is a very personal calling for us all: “I want to press people to know Christians whose very lives and witness and social relationships and speech and so on, even when they say true things that have a bearing in the political arena, are even more concerned for people’s eternal well-being under the shadow of the cross.”

Does New Tolerance Have a Future in America?

No, Carson says, not ultimately.

“Eventually it will collapse on itself,” he says. “Whether it is long term or short term, there could be a pendulum swing reaction against it. This is just too silly by half. Or it might be that we will suffer a disastrous war which makes people suddenly start thinking in absolutes — not always in wiser, godly ways — but it does force people to think in absolutes pretty quickly, once they get involved in something like that.”

The collapse of the so-called “new tolerance” may not be far off. “Already you are seeing some secular commentators beginning to laugh at the stupidities of correct speech on campuses. Sooner or later it is going to collapse.”

Can America Become Great Again?

Finally, this discussion about a woman in Kentucky really presses the big cultural question facing the nation: Can we make America great again? And such a question is mistakenly naïve, because it presupposes the “old America” is worth preserving.

“The Take America Back Again theme presupposes there was a lot more there than what was, in fact, there,” he cautions. “Who wants to rejoice if marriage standards are declining? If there is less thought given to babies in the womb? If homosexual practice becomes normative? None of that is good. There is something ‘back there’ that would be nice to hang on to, but to hang on to it by sheer dint of [political] force, without moral transformation, does not make the country more Christian. In fact, we haven’t had really distinctively Christian views on such matters in this country for a long, long time.”

So what is to come of America?

Carson is slow to make predictions, though he admits “sometimes God lets people run their own way in rebellion, and sacrifices the rich heritage they have been given.” But Carson is quick to return to the unfolding biblical storyline, and particularly to the parable of the wheat and the tares (Matthew 13:24–30). As Jesus instructs, God lets the wheat (his children) and the tares (his enemies) to grow together until Christ returns to separate and sort it all out in the end.

“Although I don’t want to predict what the course of the future will be in any sort of detail, I will say, if both wheat and tares will grow until the end, I think we will have times and periods of reformation and revival and people coming to know Christ in small and large numbers and whole societies transformed. We will also see, if the Lord tarries long enough, a third world war, more barbarity, more pogroms, more terrible slaughter and rape and pillage and so on. Both will grow to the end. We have just come through the bloodiest century in history. And I can’t think of a single reason why we might not have an even bloodier one this century.

“Thus, we must not pin our hopes on just getting the politics right. At the end of the day, Christ says: ‘I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it’ (Matthew 16:18), and that is true whether in suffering or glorious triumph.”


The content for this report was sourced by private conversation with Don Carson and through his message “The Woman from Kentucky,” and by a following panel discussion moderated by Justin Taylor.


Related Resources


Discernment as Free Speech

A Brief Study

“…Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you…. “
~Peter, the Apostle (Acts 2:29)
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
~First Amendment, Bill of Rights, U.S. Constitution

παῤῥησία parrhēsía, par-rhay-see’-ah; from G3956 and a derivative of G4483 (Strong’s); all out-spokenness, i.e. frankness, bluntness, publicity; by implication, assurance:—bold (X -ly, -ness, -ness of speech), confidence, × freely, × openly, × plainly(-ness).[1]

“The word παῤῥησί… constantly denotes a freedom, liberty, and constancy of spirit, in speaking or doing anything towards God or men. See Acts. 2:29, 4:13, 4:29; 2 Cor. 3:12; Phil. 1:20; 1 Tim. 3:13.”[2]

By Sarah H. Leslie

Peggy Noonan wrote in her weekly Wall Street Journal column this past December 4th her concerns that

The censorship movement is radical. It is starting to make everyone in the country feel harassed and anxious. It is odd to see candidates miss a rising issue that is giving pause to so many Americans.

I pray someone will address it. Literally, I just did.

(Source)

This Herescope post is an answer to her prayers. It may be an unexpected answer and a politically incorrect answer, but nevertheless it is a response. It represents an exercise in the right of free speech and freedom of religion.

Noonan, a former speechwriter to President Reagan with conservative credentials, titled her article “The First Amendment Needs Your Prayers.” She was upset about social media reactions during the San Bernardino massacre, “even while it is happening,” especially from a U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (CT) who sent out a message stating, “Your ‘thoughts’ should be about steps to take to stop this carnage. Your ‘prayers’ should be for forgiveness if you do nothing—again.” According to Noonan this heavy-handed ridiculing of people who were praying during the massacre “immediately won a name: ‘prayer shaming.’” Noonan then expressed more concerns:

…Americans are growing weary of being told what they can and cannot publicly say, proclaim and think. We all know what’s going on at the colleges, with the mad little Marats and Robespierres who are telling students and administrators what they are and are not allowed to say or do. This is not just kids acting up at this point, it’s a real censorship movement backed by an ideology that is hostile to the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It is led by students who, though they managed to get into the greatest universities in the country, seem never to have been taught to love the little amendment that guarantees free speech and free religious observance, the two pillars without which America collapses. And too bad, because when you don’t love something you lose it.

It is my impression that what is happening on the campuses is starting to break through as a real threat to what used to be called normal Americans.

Read more

Check Out

Blogs

A special edition of Check out devoted to some recent posts at my Dad’s blog at rightwithgod.net. Food for the soul at the click of your mouse.

The Greatest Miracle of All
“There is no doubt that the creation of the human nature of Jesus Christ in the womb of the Virgin Mary was the greatest miracle of all. There is nothing to compare with it. Indeed, it is not just a miracle, but an amazing intervention by God in the history of the world.”

Conceived in the Womb of a Sinner, yet without Sin.
“The birth of Jesus, which we make so much of at this time of year is a distorted emphasis. The birth itself was completely normal and natural.”

Another Year Begins.
A call to believers to run the race set before them by God.

The Big Issue for the Unbeliever for 2016
“There is nothing in this life more important than getting right with God, while we have opportunity.”

Redeeming the Time
An excellent reminder as the first month of 2016 starts to slip behind us.

Walking Carefully
“God is intensely, even fastidiously, interested in the way His child is living. There are many aspects to this. Today we will look at one of these aspects: Walking carefully.”

Kindle Deals

Reclaiming Love: Radical Relationships in a Complex World by Ajith Fernando ($3.99)


H3 Leadership: Be Humble. Stay Hungry. Always Hustle. by Brad Lomenick ($3.99)
New Atheism: A Survival Guide by Graham Veale ($2.99)

New Book

History: A Student’s Guide (Reclaiming the Christian Intellectual Tradition) by Nathan A. Finn ($11.99)


The Scandal of Biblical Illiteracy: It’s Our Problem

By Aldert Mohler, Jr.

While America’s evangelical Christians are rightly concerned about the secular worldview’s rejection of biblical Christianity, we ought to give some urgent attention to a problem much closer to home–biblical illiteracy in the church. This scandalous problem is our own, and it’s up to us to fix it.

Researchers George Gallup and Jim Castelli put the problem squarely: “Americans revere the Bible–but, by and large, they don’t read it. And because they don’t read it, they have become a nation of biblical illiterates.” How bad is it? Researchers tell us that it’s worse than most could imagine.

Fewer than half of all adults can name the four gospels. Many Christians cannot identify more than two or three of the disciples. According to data from the Barna Research Group, 60 percent of Americans can’t name even five of the Ten Commandments. “No wonder people break the Ten Commandments all the time. They don’t know what they are,” said George Barna, president…..

Read the entire article here.


The Problem of Evil: The Role of Eternity and Fee Will (Cold-Case Christianity Broadcast #57)

In this episode of the Cold-Case Christianity Broadcast, J. Warner Wallace examines the classic problem of evil and offers a cumulative case response. In this first of several related broadcasts, J. Warner examines the role eternity and free agency play in helping understand why an all-powerful, all-loving God would allow evil to exist in the universe. For more information about the cumulative case for the existence of God and the problem of evil, see J. Warner’s latest book, God’s Crime Scene. (You can learn more at http://www.ColdCaseChristianity.com)

Here is the audio podcast (the Cold-Case Christianity Weekly Podcast is located on iTunes or our RSS Feed):

https://html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/4109579/height/50/width/580/theme/standard/autoplay/no/autonext/no/thumbnail/yes/preload/no/no_addthis/no/direction/backward/no-cache/true/


Random Aberrations, Apostasies, and Heresies

It often really gets disheartening to see all the false teachings followed by Christians who refuse to use discernment!  Yet here we go with another episode exposing the WOLVES — false teachers and groups who are leading so many to spiritual dangers.
My first example is Jen Hatmaker, who is just as dangerous as Beth Moore.  Avoid her like the plague.
A follow-up on Ronnie Floyd’s IHOP visit.  HT to Marsha
Examining Tommy Tenney’s book, The God Chasers.
Why do the leadership of the United Methodist Church even allow these people to remain as members?  If they are sanctioning homosexuality, excommunicate them.  Period.  This has been a growing apostasy in the UMC and they don’t do a thing to stop it because the are more interested in preaching the false social gospel!
One of the heresies of the United Church of Christ Satan:
Are other religious writings of from God?  NO!
Who are the children of God?  Not everyone, as the liberal theologians and other religions claim.
Jim Bakker is still a false teacher.  Too bad he wasn’t kept in prison.
More on David Barton, who is a favorite with many homeschoolers.  He is NOT to be trusted for historical information, and now he even has own show on the heretical Trinity Broadcasting Network.  The fact that Barton thinks Mormon Glenn Beck is a Christian says a lot about Barton’s ignorance of history.  Even worse is his praying an anointing over Beck!  So, along with not being able to trusted with things historical, he also can’t be trusted with things spiritual.
Systematic Deception: Speaking in Tongues.  Long article, but worthwhile.
This is what passes for “tongues” and other manifestations of the Holy Spirit in so much of the charismatic world.  I’d say these are actually manifestations of demonic spirits.
Along this line, Gary Gilley has a good examination of the Word of Faith cult.
Doug Evans has a short examination of the Disciples of Christ denomination as he exposes “The Christian Left.”  The “C Left” say they agree with DoC theology, which is liberal enough for them as they try in vain to maintain their claim to real Christianity.

“Pray for ‘traveling mercies’” is a request which has always driven me crazy.  What does it mean?!?!  What is a “traveling mercy”?!?  Please, Christians, quit using this fad phrase.

I’ve been warning about false teacher Jonathan Cahn for quite some time.  He just gets worse.
While cleaning out some files I came across this excellent critique of Rick Warren’s Purpose-Driven Life.
Another reason to avoid Francis Chan’s teachings — he has no discernment.
Charisma magazine has long been known for promoting false teachings of every kind.  Now they think Jesus wants to give you golden tickets.

False teachers don’t know what real “church” is for.  This is a perfect example of the demonic ideas false teachers come up with.  I have to really wonder what sort of “pastor” she was married to.

Lastly for today, Liberty University really should confess that they couldn’t care less about the true Christian faith.  They were upset about the professor’s statements about Christianity and Islam worshipping the same God, but they are excited about continually bringing in false teachers of every ilk!  HT to Marsha.

The Daily Discovery (January 28, 2016)

headerImage-dailyDiscovery

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

An Apology for Apologetics – “My professor of apologetics in seminary told stories of odd reactions he received when he would tell people what he did for a living. The best story involved a bank loan officer. When he told the loan officer that he was a professor of apologetics, she replied, ‘That’s wonderful.’ Then she added, ‘These days, we really do need to teach people how to say they are sorry.’”

A Prayer and a Plea – “Nothing terribly controversial in that prayer, at least not for evangelical Christians. (Yes, this prayer assumes the president is a man, because that’s what the options were on election day in 2012. But let’s take the gender issue off the table for the moment.) If I’m not mistaken, everything in the prayer above is pretty standard. If you are a serious, Bible-believing, church-going, Jesus-is-coming-back, you-need-to-be-born-again, orthodox Christian, don’t you agree it’s a good idea to pray that our president be faithful, kind, humble, wise, and compassionate? I hope every evangelical Christian reading this blog can say, ‘Yes, I pray for those things too.’”

The Character of the Christian: A One-Woman Man – “Today we continue this series on the character of the Christian. We are exploring how the various character qualifications of elders are actually God’s calling on all Christians. While elders are meant to exemplify these traits, all Christians are to display them. I want us to consider whether we are displaying these traits and to learn together how we can pray to have them in greater measure.Our topic today is a qualification Paul repeats in both 1 Timothy 3:2 and Titus 1:6. The ESV translates it as ‘the husband of one wife,’ a common rendering of the Greek which says, literally, ‘a one-woman man.’”

Tor and the Trinity – “It started with a hijab during Advent, and ends with a foundational lesson in the Trinity. Larycia Hawkins, a professor of Politics and International Relations at Wheaton, decided to wear a hijab to her classes. She explained on Facebook that she did this as part of her “advent worship” in order to demonstrate that she…”

Paper vs pixels: the return of the great ebook debate – “Everyone’s talking about it. Okay, not everyone, but some: Christian über-blogger Tim Challies is definitely (maybe) ditching print books in favor of ebooks. Former Christian publishing CEO turned über-platform builder Michael Hyatt is ditching ebooks in favor of print. Christian über-nice guy Trevin Wax is saying hold up a second, let’s not get crazy here.”


SERMON:

Kofi Adu-Boahen – By Grace Alone


VIDEOS:

Is it a sin for a Christian to smoke pot?

The latest dopey Evangelical trend: Star Wars Church.


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

The post The Daily Discovery (January 28, 2016) appeared first on Entreating Favor.


The Daily Discovery (January 29, 2016)

headerImage-dailyDiscovery

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

The New Sexual World Order Is So Confusing – “My liberal friends—what few remain—regularly remind me of the relentless advance of ‘history’ as it progresses towards a certain eschatological state of complete peace and utter equality. I am told that I, a citizen of the old patriarchy, am to get on the right side of ‘history’ and stop making a fool of myself. I do not want to be a fool, and I have always liked being right, so perhaps it is time to forsake the ways of my fathers and allow myself to be guided by feminist visionaries and gender theorists into the gilded byways of the coming new order. I repent of my sexist and hetero-normative ways. My consciousness-raising has begun.”

Christian Cliches: Backsliding – “My early months as a Christian were a joyous feast of fellowship. There was nothing I loved more than to be with my new brothers and sisters in Christ. Every believer I knew seemed so sanctified and intimate with the Savior. I actually felt intimidated by lives that were seemingly lived on another plane of righteousness to my own sinful struggles. But it didn’t take long before I discovered a sub-culture my Christian peers described as ‘backsliders.’”

The Necessity of Expository Preaching – “According to the legendary golfer Jack Nicklaus, the best thing he ever did was to discover the ‘fundamentalist’ teacher Jack Grout, who taught him the basics that he has followed ever since. Great preachers, like great golfers, follow basic rules. The more they practice these rules, the better they become.”

Abortion: Is It Really a Matter of Life and Death? – “You would think that pro-choice meant that someone would allow the baby to choose whether he or she should live or die (miscarry), but that is not the case. Even while the baby is choosing to live and continuing to develop, some do not respect that choice. And that has brought us to the heat of a debate that rages around the world.”

Kill Your (Celebrity Culture) Worship – “The demise of evangelicalism, megachurches, and orthodox Christianity is regularly announced these days, but I admit I’m a bit skeptical of most of these reports. As a friend of mine is fond of saying, half of all statistics are made up on the spot, and the other half can be made to mean whatever you want them to. Recently there’s been some chatter about the imminent demise of contemporary worship music.”


SERMON:

John Chester – The Humility of The Messiah


VIDEOS:

Apologia Academy w/James White: Mormonism

Without Christ You’re Dead (Transgender Attacks)


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

The post The Daily Discovery (January 29, 2016) appeared first on Entreating Favor.


Check out

Blogs

The New Tolerance Must Crumble, Says Don Carson
One major lesson Carson takes from the Davis controversy is that America is clearly a nation that has “progressively moved away from whatever Judeo-Christian-Deist roots that it once had.” We are increasingly “a nation of millions who vote at once without any distinctive Christian contributions or commitments, voting for things that we will find abominable. We are not there yet, but that is the direction in which things are going.”

The World Needs Pastors
“There is much in life that cannot be fixed, but must simply be endured. Pastors are fitted for this reality. They sit beside their members when the darkness closes in. They help them fight off depression and despair. They offer simple acts of kindness, bringing a bite to eat or a card or a bouquet of flowers. Again, nothing earth-shaking; nothing that anyone is going to term the “Next Big Trend” on the evangelical conference circuit.”

The Blessing of Visiting the Sick
“I am writing this post because, over the past three weeks, I have spent more time at various hospitals (visiting congregants and the family members of congregants) than I have spent in almost every other year of ministry combined.”

Don’t Theologize or Spiritualize Ministry Mediocrity
David Prince challenges us to preach the Word and reform the church.

When our commitment to the primacy of the Word and gospel does not trickle-down to every aspect of congregational life, we are like the obese person lecturing on the primacy of personal fitness or someone living opulent lifestyle lecturing about frugality.

Endorsement
If I’m going to offend people, I want it to be for Gospel reasons only.

Jesus wants Democrats and Republicans to come to him. Socialists and capitalists, the one percent and the 99, black, white, and brown, and he would like them all to feel welcome in your church. Of all the obstacles we can put in people’s way, a political endorsement is the dumbest, and most easily avoidable, of them all.

A Matter of Inches
How about this for a phone call?

The voice told me that my daughter had been run over by a car while walking on campus and that she was going to the hospital in an ambulance.

Life in Twenty Year Stages
This is a neat way of looking at the different seasons of life:

How do we count our days that usually amount to seventy or eighty years? One of many ways is to count by twenty year increments. These time blocks give us a general roadmap and help to order our expectations and sense of responsibility in life as we walk before the Lord and ask him to establish the work of our hands here on earth.

Kindle Books

Twelve Extraordinary Women: How God Shaped Women of the Bible, and What He Wants to Do with You by John Macarthur $1.99.

God’s High Calling for Women by John Macarthur $4.61.

The Fred Factor: How passion in your work and life can turn the ordinary into the extraordinary by Mark Sanborn. $1.99. Here’s my one-hour-skim-read weekend book – a light read, lots of stories, and maybe pick up a little nugget or two.

What’s Your Biggest Regret
Thought-provoker. Life-changer?


If American Pastors Voted Today—This Is Who They’d Elect As President

LifeWay Research conducted a survey to determine, “If the 2016 presidential election were held today, for whom would you vote?”

Protestant pastors who typically identify as Republican favor Ted Cruz. Protestant pastors who identify as Democrat favor Hillary Clinton. However, “Undecided” remains “the most popular choice of America’s pastors according to a new telephone survey of 1,000 Protestant senior pastors,” according to LifeWay Research.

There is much talk about support for Donald Trump among evangelicals, but Ed Stetzer shared, “One of the most surprising findings of our survey was the poor showing of Donald Trump. When it comes to Mr. Trump, there seems to be a huge gap between the pulpit and the pew.”

“Simply put, it’s a bizarre election season,” added Stetzer.

LifeWay shared these findings from the survey:

  • Half (54 percent) of Protestant pastors indicate they are Republicans. One in four are independent (23 percent), while one in seven (14 percent) are Democrats.
  • Among pastors who are Republicans, Cruz (29 percent) is in the lead, followed by Ben Carson (10 percent), Marco Rubio (8 percent), and Trump (5 percent). Thirty-nine percent are undecided.
  • Among pastors who are Democrats, a third favor Clinton (38 percent), one in four (23 percent) favors Bernie Sanders, and 31 percent are undecided.
  • Among pastors who are independents, almost 3 of 5 (57%) are undecided. Leading among independents are Cruz and Rubio (8 percent each), Carson and Sanders (6 percent each), Clinton (5 percent), and Trump (4 percent).
  • Older pastors (those over 64) are more likely to be undecided (54 percent) than those 18 to 44 (44 percent). They are also more likely to favor Trump (8 percent). Cruz does well with pastors 45 to 54 (21 percent).
  • Cruz does better with white pastors (19 percent) than with those of other ethnicities (5 percent).  Clinton does the opposite: 5 percent of white pastors favor her, along with 18 percent of pastors of other ethnicities.
  • Evangelical pastors prefer Cruz (18 percent), Carson (8 percent), and Rubio (8 percent). Mainline pastors choose Cruz (13 percent), Clinton (10 percent), Sanders (8 percent), and Carson (7 percent).
  • Baptist pastors (43 percent) are less likely to be undecided than Lutheran (60 percent) and Pentecostal (61 percent) pastors.

The post If American Pastors Voted Today—This Is Who They’d Elect As President appeared first on ChurchLeaders.com.


What Is the Ultimate Source of Morality?

In the PragerU video “Where Do Good and Evil Come From?” philosopher Peter Kreeft explains why objective morality can only come from a source higher than anything in the natural world. Enjoy!

(HT: Joe Carter)


This Week in Calvinism – January 29, 2016

  • Kelly Martinez describes four ways in which Calvinism differs from Lutheranism. Note to Ms. Martinez: do some research on a topic before writing an article. I think you confused the two in a couple of paragraphs, and the tenets of both are a bit more complex than the descriptions you provide.
  • Calvinist Batman tweets: “Can Jesus be kicked out of the Trinity? If you’ve been united with Christ, why do you think that God would throw you out of the family?”
  • The Pastor with No Answers welcomes as guests Chris Date from the Rethinking Hell Podcast and Leighton Flowers of Soteriology 101. Makes sense.
  • Jon Bloom of Desiring God discusses how to have intimacy with God.
  • Are you up to a reading challenge? Perhaps you can keep pace with Tim Challies. He has already read 11 books so far this year. Yeah, I’m a bit behind.

Are You a “Church Control Freak”?

I don’t like writing this kind of post, but I think it’s necessary. I’ve seen too many churches with laypersons (and pastors, for that matter, though I’m focusing on laity with this post) who want to control the show. Here are some markers of those folks:

1. They’ve been at the church for a while. At least in the established church, they assume that their tenure gives them the right to take the lead.

2. They’ve often stepped into leadership voids in the past. Listen to their stories and you’ll often find that they’ve gained control during previous times of transition or turmoil.

3. They want to know everything. Knowledge is empowering, and they expect to be in the loop for everything. I call them “information idolaters.”

4. They don’t listen to opposing views. Particularly in a congregational-polity church, they’ll fight for the right to express their opinion—but then completely dismiss the opinions of others.

https://www.churchleaders.com/article-headlines-widget.html

5. They demand being a part of every major decision. In fact, they can’t imagine how the church can wisely decide something without their input. Even if they agree with the decision, they’ll find something wrong if they weren’t part of the process.

6. Their support for pastoral leadership blows with the wind. If they like what the pastor’s doing, they’re on board. If they don’t like it, though, they quickly become opposition—always “for the good of the church,” they say.

7. They speak in terms of “some people are saying.” These “people” may be only themselves and their spouses, but the exaggerated phrase “some people” gives them a sense of support.

8. They see the negative more than the positive. They see themselves as God’s appointed prophet to make sure the church never goes astray (with “astray” meaning any direction they don’t want to go).

9. They often use veiled threats against leaders. You’ve probably heard some of them: “People are going to leave”; “We’ll stop giving”; “We’ve seen many pastors come and go” …

10. They seldom talk about the Word or prayer. Indeed, you’ll seldom hear them talk about their personal walk with God. Control freaks don’t usually need God.

11. They often focus on the budget. Controlling the purse strings is a primary way they extend their influence.

12. They’d never admit they’re controlling. In fact, they might not even recognize it. That’s one of the enemy’s subtle ways to mess up the church: He influences control freaks who don’t even recognize what’s happening.

What other characteristics would you add?  

The post Are You a “Church Control Freak”? appeared first on ChurchLeaders.com.


This ‘n’ That

  • If I didn’t know better, I’d say Aimee Byrd of Mortification of Spin snuck a peek at the upcoming episodes of Equipping Eve as she addresses Bible “art journaling” in this recent blog post.
  • Allow me to translate for Christine Caine: “Don’t make it complicated, just keep the Law perfectly!” Yeah, let me know how that goes.
  • This is nice. Caine’s buddy, Priscilla Shirer, apparently feels free to blaspheme God in an exclamatory manner on social media.
  • If he could and if he knew, Martin Luther would be rolling over.
  • I’m shocked, positively shocked. Wait…nope…never mind, totally saw this coming.
  • Written to pastors, this is an interesting read: “How long should you stay at your church?”
  • Here is your weekly dose of adorable.
  • Make sure you’re tuning in to The Truth Pulpit. Pastor Don Green is preaching through a series titled, “God Over All,” and it is one you will not want to miss!
  • I hate to say “I told you so,” but…nearly four years ago, I tried to tell you. Jonathan Cahn was on the “dark side” from his very first entrance onto the scene.
  • Phil Johnson and Mike Riccardi recently did a 2-part Q&A session that is full of helpful and interesting discussion. Be sure to listen to Part 1 and Part 2.
  • Ah, yes, the Pinterest world of perceived perfection.
  • Why we must preach the Word.
  • The blasphemy of the rich young ruler:

Weekend A La Carte (January 30)

This weekend’s Kindle deals include The Religions Next Door by Marvin Olasky ($0.99); Beginning at Moses by Michael Barrett ($0.99); Prayers of an Excellent Wife by Andrew Case ($0.99); Preaching with Passion by James Draper ($0.99); The Little Handbook to Perfecting the Art of Christian Writing by Don Aycock ($0.99).

Don’t Theologize or Spiritualize Ministry Mediocrity

This is an important challenge to churches that love good preaching. “Why is it that so many churches that profess a commitment to the primacy of expository preaching, settle for mediocrity in so many other facets of the church’s ministry?”

The Most Dangerous Place On Earth

And speaking of preaching, read this one by Steve Lawson. “Satan has no greater strongholds than houses of worship where the truth is suppressed. Nowhere is he more deeply entrenched in the lives of people than among those who are religious but who have no supernatural light of holiness and truth.”

The Deep Space of Digital Reading

This is a good article to read if you are concerned about what digital reading is doing to us. “The history of reading suggests that what we’re presently experiencing is probably not the end times of human thought. It’s more like an interregnum, or the crouch before a leap.”

75 Hobby Ideas for Men

Yes, 75 of them. I approve of reading being at the top.

Why the iPad Is Going Extinct

Here’s why the iPad and other tablets are slowly going extinct. I don’t see them disappearing anytime soon, but they do seem to be in decline. I don’t want to go back to preaching off of paper!

The Blessing of Visiting the Sick

Nick Batzig tells of the unexpected blessing of visiting the sick.

Tomorrow in 1892. 124 years ago tomorrow, extraordinary Baptist preacher Charles Spurgeon died. *

Hearse

I enjoyed this short video on the word “hearse.” It fascinates me to learn how words transform in meaning over time.

Family Worship 101

Westminster Books is offering a deal on Donald Whitney’s book on family worship. It’s a good one to buy in bulk and distribute in your church.

iPhones, Androids, and Your Church

My gratitude goes to Finalweb for sponsoring the blog this week with an article titled “iPhones, Androids, and Your Church.”

Sanders

We are saved by the gospel of God to worship the God of the gospel. —Fred Sanders


Top Headlines

 Faith a Big Topic at GOP Debate
 Israel: Archaeologists Uncover Inscriptions in Jesus’ Language
 Franklin Graham Helping Both Saeed and Naghmeh Abedini with Marital Struggles
 China: Controversy Emerges When Church Expands into Confucius’ Hometown
 Cruz’s Evangelical Pastor Father Helping Him Gain Votes among Conservative Christians
 Ted Cruz Admits He Failed to Tithe in the Past
 Pakistan Takes Action to End Child Labor in Brick Kilns
 Council of Europe: ISIS is Committing Genocide against Religious Minorities
 Survey Finds 76 Percent of Americans Believe Living Together before Marriage is Ok
 Pastors in Nigeria Fall Prey to Kidnappers

Opinion

 Why is the Church Treating Working Motherhood Like a Sin?
 What ‘You, Me and the Apocalypse’ Says about the Future
 Garrison Keillor Says Farewell: Lessons from Lake Wobegon
 Christians– We Aren’t Promised Success
 The Indictment of David Daleiden: The Culture of Death Shoots the Messenger

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.


What Is the Gospel?

There is no greater message to be heard than that which we call the gospel. But as important as that is, it is often given to massive distortions or over simplifications. People think they’re preaching the gospel to you when they tell you, ‘you can have a purpose to your life’, or that ‘you can have meaning to your life’, or that ‘you can have a personal relationship with Jesus.’ All of those things are true, and they’re all important, but they don’t get to the heart of the gospel.

The gospel is called the ‘good news’ because it addresses the most serious problem that you and I have as human beings, and that problem is simply this: God is holy and He is just, and I’m not. And at the end of my life, I’m going to stand before a just and holy God, and I’ll be judged. And I’ll be judged either on the basis of my own righteousness–or lack of it –or the righteousness of another. The good news of the gospel is that Jesus lived a life of perfect righteousness, of perfect obedience to God, not for His own well being but for His people. He has done for me what I couldn’t possibly do for myself. But not only has He lived that life of perfect obedience, He offered Himself as a perfect sacrifice to satisfy the justice and the righteousness of God.

The great misconception in our day is this: that God isn’t concerned to protect His own integrity. He’s a kind of wishy-washy deity, who just waves a wand of forgiveness over everybody. No. For God to forgive you is a very costly matter. It cost the sacrifice of His own Son. So valuable was that sacrifice that God pronounced it valuable by raising Him from the dead – so that Christ died for us, He was raised for our justification. So the gospel is something objective. It is the message of who Jesus is and what He did. And it also has a subjective dimension. How are the benefits of Jesus subjectively appropriated to us? How do I get it? The Bible makes it clear that we are justified not by our works, not by our efforts, not by our deeds, but by faith–and by faith alone. The only way you can receive the benefit of Christ’s life and death is by putting your trust in Him–and in Him alone. You do that, you’re declared just by God, you’re adopted into His family, you’re forgiven of all of your sins, and you have begun your pilgrimage for eternity.


The Gospel on 5 Fingers

If you picked up a hitchhiker (not that I recommend doing that) and he saw a Bible on your car seat and said, “I’ve heard about this thing called the Gospel – can you explain it to me before you drop me off in one minute up the street?” What would you say?

Can you explain the gospel in 30 seconds? In one minute? In five minutes?

Here’s one way I have found helpful. The five main components of the gospel can be remembered on 5 fingers of one hand. Here they are:

1) Jesus’ birth
2) Jesus’ life
3) Jesus’ death
4) Jesus’ resurrection
5) Jesus’ ascension

Obviously each point can be elaborated on depending on how much time you have. Here’s the short version:

1) Jesus’ birth – Jesus, God himself, the creator of the universe, the Messiah, became a human being – took on flesh, and was born of a virgin.

2) Jesus’ life – Jesus lived a life of perfect obedience to his Father. Though he was tempted in every way as we are, he never once sinned.

3) Jesus’ death – on the cross, Jesus himself took all our sins and paid for them. God the father counted all our sins to Jesus as if he himself had personally committed them. Then Jesus bore God’s wrath towards sin – the punishment we deserved – as a substitute for us.

4) Jesus’ resurrection – within 3 days, Jesus rose physically from the dead, proving that his sacrifice for sins have been accepted by God, since the punishment for sin was death. Jesus was seen by numerous people after he rose including 500 at one time (1 Corinthians 15).

5) Jesus’ ascension – Jesus ascended physically into heaven where he reigns as King of kings and Lord of lords. And someday he will return to the earth.

That’s the gospel, the good news, and if we believe in Jesus Christ and this good news and call upon him he will save us from our sins and give us eternal life.

That’s a simple way to remember the gospel – five fingers. Even a child can do it. So ask God to give you opportunities to share his good news today.


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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(Alternative News, Apologetics, Current Events, Commentary, Opinion, Theology, Discernment Blog, Devotionals, Christian Internet Evangelism & Missions Activist).

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Spurgeon died 124 years ago today. B.H. Carroll’s eulogy

Your weekly Dose of SpurgeonThe PyroManiacs devote some space each weekend to highlights from the lifetime of works from the Prince of Preachers, Charles Haddon Spurgeon.  The following memorial address was given by B.H. Carroll, founder of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, on the first Sunday in February, 1892.Hebrews 11:4Last Sunday Night at Mentone France, there died The…

http://teampyro.blogspot.com/2016/01/spurgeon-died-124-years-ago-today-bh.html

Standing firm in your faith

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

3 Ἐν σαρκὶ γὰρ περιπατοῦντες οὐ κατὰ σάρκα στρατευόμεθα, 4 τὰ γὰρ ὅπλα τῆς στρατείας ἡμῶν οὐ σαρκικὰ ἀλλὰ δυνατὰ τῷ θεῷ πρὸς καθαίρεσιν ὀχυρωμάτων, λογισμοὺς καθαιροῦντες 5 καὶ πᾶν ὕψωμα ἐπαιρόμενον κατὰ τῆς γνώσεως τοῦ θεοῦ, καὶ αἰχμαλωτίζοντες πᾶν νόημα εἰς τὴν ὑπακοὴν τοῦ Χριστοῦ, (2 Corinthians 10:3-5 NA28)

3 For though we walk in the flesh, we are not warring according to the flesh. 4 For the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly, but powerful through God to the overthrow of strongholds overthrowing reasonings 5 and every high thing rising up against the knowledge of God and leading captive every thought into the obedience of Christ. (2 Corinthians 10:3-5 translated from the NA28 Greek text)

All believers who are still in this life also live and walk in the flesh in a physical sense, but the goal must be to grow into maturity and no…

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5 Reasons I’m not a ‘Christ follower’

Running The Race

Now that I have your attention, let me clarify that. I don’t mean that I don’t ‘follow’ Christ. What I do mean is that I don’t ‘self-identify’ as a ‘Christ follower’. I don’t get upset when people ask me if I’m a ‘Christ follower’, I just don’t like to call myself a ‘Christ follower’.

Here are my 5 reasons::

1. Anyone can be a ‘Christ follower’. One need not even have met and embraced Christ as Savior to be one. Think about it.

2. Although claiming to be a Christ ‘follower’ means more than just being a ‘fan’; meaning that I ‘do’ something rather than just hit the ‘Like’ button on Jesus’ Facebook page, it also tends to tickle the ‘boast’ button attached to my flesh.

3. It tends toward a sense of ‘works’ righteousness. See number 2.

4. It misses the gospel, in that it’s about what I ‘do’…

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O unbelieving generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I put up with you?

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

5 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” 6 And the Lord said, “If you had faith like a mustard seed, you would say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and be planted in the sea’; and it would obey you. (Luke 17:5-6 NASB)

This Christian walk is actually a pilgrimage through life. It begins at salvation and continues to the Celestial City where the believer will be with the Lord eternally. However, the journey itself is the means through which God sanctifies His children. Satan hinders God’s people at every turn. The more they are devoted to the Lord and obey Him, the more He hinders. God allows this in order to peel away the layers of pride and self-sufficiency in each believer. These things are bound to this world and flesh and, therefore, are impotent to bring joy to the believer and glory to…

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The Vatican and Iran: “A Partnership Destined To Endure”

Absolute Truth from the Word of God

Pope and Pres of Iran

According to Cruxnow.com:

The bond between the Vatican and Iran is a partnership destined to endure-source

The author of this piece in Cruxnow.com is John L. Allen, Jr. Here is an excerpt from his bio:

“John L. Allen Jr. is associate editor of Crux, specializing in coverage of the Vatican and the Catholic Church.The London Tablet has called John “the most authoritative writer on Vatican affairs in the English language,” and renowned papal biographer George Weigel has called him “the best Anglophone Vatican reporter ever.” When John was called upon to put the first question to Pope Benedict XVI aboard the papal plane en route to the United States in April 2008, the Vatican spokesman said to the pope: “Holy Father, this man needs no introduction.” -source

Brethren – this article is so troubling to me and should be to you as well. I will take…

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Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God?

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error. (Romans 1:26-27 NASB)

The Postmodern paradigm sees, “… affirming gays as liberating them from their oppressors…” This postmodern mindset is deeply engrained in what is known as Emergence Christianity. This is why its leaders nearly all line up and stand with their “gay friends” in support and do not attempt to get them to repent of their sin because they actually believe that a person can be a practicing homosexual and a good Christian at the same time. Well, actually, I do understand…

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Are You Feeling the “Bern?” What YOU Need To Know About Socialism

Absolute Truth from the Word of God

socialism

“The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings; the inherent virtue of socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.” — Winston Churchill

From Town Hall:

“Socialism is particularly dangerous because it’s so perfectly suited for the modern era. It’s the ultimate “miracle” product: it’s “nice,” it’s “fair,” it’ll make you feel good about yourself, it’ll “help” people who “deserve it” by taking things away from people who “have so much” they’ll barely miss it. It sounds wonderful, doesn’t it? But, like most products with sleazy salesmen and hidden track records, the promises socialism makes are all a mirage. Since our schools do a terrible job of teaching history and economics these days, it’s our job to explain how socialism slowly, insidiously eats away at the core of a society.” -source

We can see the negative effects of Socialism by looking at countries where the socialist “experiment” has…

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Dear Liberty U Students and The Gospel Coalition: You Have Bigger Problems Than Trump

Learning the Path blogger, Brandon, reports on past and present speakers at Liberty University, some of whom are outright false teachers, and he tells us why they’re accused of playing fast and loose with the truth. One example he gives is Ann Voskamp who’s scheduled to speak on February 10th. Brandon points out that this popular author and speaker “is yet another mystic who has made disgustingly blasphemous statements about God. Read this from her book, “One Thousand Gifts”, she wrote, “I fly to Paris and discover how to make love to God.”

Even though Trump has already spoken at LU, we’re posting Brandon’s piece because we want Bereans to be aware of the troubling speaker lineup. He writes:…

http://bereanresearch.org/dear-liberty-u-students-and-the-gospel-coalition-you-have-bigger-problems-than-trump/

GTY: Backsliding

John 10:27-29

Code: B160127

by Cameron Buettel

My early months as a Christian were a joyous feast of fellowship. There was nothing I loved more than to be with my new brothers and sisters in Christ. Every believer I knew seemed so sanctified and intimate with the Savior. I actually felt intimidated by lives that were seemingly lived on another plane of righteousness to my own sinful struggles. But it didn’t take long before I discovered a sub-culture my Christian peers described as “backsliders.”

Few things can match the shock we experience when brought face to face with those who abandon the Christian faith. And there was nothing that could have prepared me for the grief of seeing hands once raised in worship, now deployed in satanic vices—backslidden from their former Christian faith.

I could not fathom why anyone would abandon eternal rewards for a short season of wicked pleasure. My Arminian pastor assured me that backsliding was the only possible explanation, and that our job was to “persuade these backsliders to come back to church and restore the salvation they’ve lost.”

Indeed some people were quite effective at retrieving backsliders and over the years I saw an endless stream of people who would gain their salvation, lose it, and re-gain it only to lose it again—rinse and repeat. My eyes were slowly opening to the reality that my church was actually a spiritual transit lounge for people in my city who periodically ventured into the kingdom of God. I could smell the problem but was unable to pinpoint the source. Did the Bible have an explanation?

“Backsliding” is an Old Testament term found in the prophetic books and used within the context of Israel’s unfaithfulness to God. John MacArthur describes it as “a word that the prophets used of apostate unbelievers.” [1] John MacArthur, The MacArthur Study Bible (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2006) Note on Proverbs 14:14. He concedes that Christians can backslide only in the sense that they “regress into a period of spiritual dullness or disobedience.” But he adds that such cases always incur God’s discipline (Hebrews 12:6–11) and produce repentance. [2] http://www.gty.org/resources/questions/QA116/can-a-true-christian-backslide

That idea captures what most Calvinists mean if they use the term “backslider.” There is much that could be said about what constitutes a spiritual lapse, or how far you can go before you go too far. But the important principle to grasp is that the backsliding of a believer is always temporary and always involves God’s chastening which in turn produces repentance. It never means that their salvation was temporarily lost. (For further reading on this subject I would recommend two of John’s articles: Does Scripture Leave Room for Carnal Christians? and How Far Can Christians Go in Sinning?

John argues that “backsliding” can never refer to a person who professes faith in Christ but lives in a “perpetual state of willful rebellion or ungodly indifference.” [3] http://www.gty.org/resources/questions/QA116/can-a-true-christian-backslide Such people are not backsliding believers but rather false Christians who were never accepted by Christ in the first place (Matthew 7:21–23; 1 John 3:4–10).

The backsliding doctrine I had been taught was actually the result of false shepherds preaching a false gospel that demanded no repentance. The result was providing false pronouncements of salvation on false converts who were more than happy to march out the door and back into the arms of the world they still loved more than Christ. The apostle John nailed the issue when he said: “They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us they would have remained with us; but they went out, so that it would be shown that they all are not of us” (1 John 2:19). As Ray Comfort summarized; “It’s those we erroneously call backsliders, who fall away, because they have never slid forward in the first place”. [4] Quoted from Ray Comfort’s Sermon, True and False Conversion. http://www.livingwaters.com/audio/way-of-the-master/true-and-false-conversion

Backsliding has become a theologically tragic Christian cliché—tragic because of the ways it impugns God’s character. It implicitly denies God’s sovereign power in regenerating sinners (Ezekiel 36:25–27), resurrecting them from being dead in sin (Ephesians 2:1) to a new and living creation in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). The idea that a Christian can backslide and lose his salvation also impugns Christ’s promise to eternally preserve the people He saves:

My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. (John 10:27–29)

I’ll never forget John MacArthur’s simple and yet profound argument for the security of Christian salvation based on God’s power to keep His people—“If I could lose my salvation, I would.” [5] Quoted from John MacArthur’s sermon, The Saint’s Guarantee. http://www.gty.org/resources/sermons/65-15/the-saints-guarantee The very idea of keeping our salvation on the basis of our own efforts is as preposterous as the idea of attaining our salvation in the first place because of something we did.

The modern “backslider” cannot be persuaded back into a kingdom he never entered in the first place. He needs to be evangelized and called to repentance—like all unbelievers do. And if he repents, it should not be treated as a re-commitment to his salvation but rather as an outward sign of God’s inner saving work.


Available online at: http://www.gty.org/resources/Blog/B160127
COPYRIGHT ©2016 Grace to You

SATANISM AT THE UNITED NATIONS AND THE COMING ANTICHRIST

Absolute Truth from the Word of God

Pope UN

Months ago, I wrote a two part article on the origins of the occult in the United Nations. I explained what is called the “Lucis Trust” and gave a brief history of Alice Bailey who was instrumental in bringing Luciferian worship to the U.N.

In light of rapidly changing events concerning the United Nations; particularly the scheduled address by Pope Francis on Climate Change and world depopulation, I felt that it would be good to update the prior articles. Christians need to know what is happening and why it is happening. We need to be able to explain to the unsaved how the United Nations will be used by Satan to bring about the NWO – One World Government, and eventually the Antichrist himself.

“Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, That ye be not soon shaken…

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Creeds, Confessions, and Obedience

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

21 “ Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. (Matthew 7:21 NASB)

There are many false teachings in our time within the visible Church. What we must never forget is that there is nothing new under the Sun. The heresies we encounter now are actually very old. Some have been around a long time in their current form while others are recycled versions of an older heresy that was dealt with hundreds of years ago. Why should our enemy and his seed come up with new attacks when the old ones wreak havoc, deepen spiritual blindness, and keep people mired in man-made religiosity instead of becoming spirit-filled, obedient Christians?

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January 27, 2016 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report (US•World•Christian)

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Jan. 27, 2016

BLOOMBERG

After years of lambasting other countries for helping rich Americans hide their money offshore, the U.S. is emerging as a leading tax and secrecy haven for rich foreigners. By resisting new global disclosure standards, the U.S. is creating a hot new market, becoming the go-to place to stash foreign wealth. Everyone from London lawyers to Swiss trust companies is getting in on the act, helping the world’s rich move accounts from places like the Bahamas and the British Virgin Islands to Nevada, Wyoming, and South Dakota.

Stanford University beat Harvard University once again in annual donations as U.S. universities raised a record $40.3 billion, bolstered by at least eight gifts of $100 million or more including art and rare books.

Iraqi Kurdish leaders plan to hold a referendum on the region’s independence, an official said on Wednesday, in a move that could lead to the break-up of OPEC’s second-biggest oil producer.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said he has no problem with U.S. investors joining the post-sanctions business rush to his country, adding the obstacle is Washington and that he hopes for “more sensible people” in Congress.

Emirates, the world’s biggest long-haul airline, plans to add 37 new planes to its fleet in the fiscal year beginning April as it expands operations in Asia with new destinations. The airline will receive 21 Airbus Group SE A380 superjumbos and 16 Boeing Co. 777s in the year ending March 2017. The aircraft are worth $14.5 billion at list prices.

AP Top Stories

Federal and state law officers arrested the leaders of an armed group occupying a national wildlife refuge, during a traffic stop along a highway in Oregon’s frozen high country that prompted gunfire and left one man dead.

Iran’s navy warned a U.S. warship to leave waters near the Strait of Hormuz where the Iranians were testing submarines, destroyers and missile launchers, news agencies reported.

San Francisco police arrested made 48 arrests, including two murder suspects, in the city’s biggest drug bust in recent memory.

Eight members of the militant group Hamas were missing Wednesday after the collapse of a tunnel in the Gaza Strip caused by rain and flooding, a security source said.

Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou’s planned trip to the Taiwanese-held island of Itu Aba in the disputed South China Sea is “extremely unhelpful” and won’t do anything to resolve disputes over the waterway, a U.S. official said on Wednesday.

Concepcion Picciotto, a 80-year-old Spanish-born nuclear disarmament activist who camped in front of the White House for more than three decades, has died, colleagues said Tuesday. The diminutive weather-worn protester who manned a placard-festooned tent in front of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue through Washington’s brutal summers and winters since 1981 died Monday.

A Virginia resident who traveled outside the United States has tested positive for the mosquito-transmitted Zika virus, state health officials said on Tuesday.

Nuclear-armed North Korea poses an “overt threat, a declared threat to the world”, US Secretary of State John Kerry said in Beijing Wednesday following Pyongyang’s fourth nuclear test earlier this month.

Atomic scientists, including 16 Nobel Laureates, announced Tuesday that the world’s metaphorical “Doomsday Clock” representing how close we are to planetary destruction, or “midnight,” will remain at its 2015 position of 3 minutes to midnight.

Dozens of elderly Holocaust survivors lit candles at Auschwitz on Wednesday; exactly 71 years after the Soviet army liberated the death camp that has become the most powerful symbol of the human suffering inflicted by Nazi Germany during World War II.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said Tuesday the state will assume vast control over Atlantic City’s finances and decision-making, saying the seaside gambling resort is incapable of getting its finances together after years of overspending.

A Southern California woman and her son have been charged with smuggling an arsenal of ammunition and gun parts to the Philippines.

BBC

President Obama has called for urgent action against the Zika virus, which has been linked to babies being born with underdeveloped brains. He said research to develop vaccines and treatments must be speeded up.

Astronomers have discovered the largest known solar system, consisting of a large planet that takes nearly a million years to orbit its star. The gas giant is one trillion kilometers away, making its orbit 140 times wider than Pluto’s path around our Sun.

Vietnam’s ruling Communist Party has re-elected Nguyen Phu Trong as general secretary for a second term.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has authorized an investigation into possible war crimes perpetrated during a conflict between Russia and Georgia.

Israel’s defense minister has accused Turkey of buying oil from the so-called Islamic State (IS) group, thereby funding the militants’ activities.

WND

An American pastor who was imprisoned in Iran for over three years is now speaking about his time behind bars, acknowledging that he and others were beaten by Iranian authorities.

The Swedish Police force is requesting as many as 4,100 new employees because of the refugee influx and an increased terror threat. The request is made in a letter from the police to the government, to be submitted Monday.

A 17-year-old Danish girl successfully fended off a would-be rapist by using pepper spray is now facing the likelihood of criminal charges, because the popular defense item is against the law.


Top News 1/27/2016

Pope Francis Welcomes Iranian President to Vatican
On the first official Iranian diplomatic visit to Europe in 20 years, Iranian president Hassan Rouhani is greeted and welcomed by Pope Francis to the Vatican in the interest of friendly Iran-Rome relations. (video)

Wikileaks: Media is not ‘controlled by Jews’ but by Saudi Arabia: media loyalties purchased around the world
Saudi Arabia controls its image by monitoring media and buying loyalties from Australia to Canada and everywhere in between. Documents reveal the extensive efforts to monitor and co-opt Arab media, making sure to correct any deviations in regional coverage of Saudi Arabia and Saudi-related matters. Saudi Arabia’s strategy for co-opting Arab media takes two forms, corresponding to the “carrot and stick” approach, referred to in the documents as “neutralisation” and “containment”. The approach is customised depending on the market and the media in question.

Netanyahu: World must stand with Israel ‘not for our sake, for theirs’
“Preserving the memory of the Holocaust is more important today than ever, for in this period of resurgent and sometimes violent anti-Semitism, it is commemorations like this that remind us all where the oldest and most enduring hatred can lead,” Netanyahu said in a statement released Tuesday evening.

Holocaust – ‘atheists at the heart of the problem’
As UK Christians remember the Holocaust, marked on January 27 as the day in 1945 when Auschwitz was liberated, they have been reminded that it was spawned by godlessness and the rejection of faith.

Netanuahu: Where’s Europe when Iran, ISIS, Hamas call for another Holocaust?
“Unfortunately in Europe and elsewhere Jews are once again being target once again just for being Jews,” he said. “Around the world Jewish communities are increasingly living in fear as we see anti-Semitism directed against individual Jews, and we also see this hatred directed against the collective Jew, against the Jewish state,” he said.

Last megathrust quake hit Vancouver Island 316 years ago
It was January 26, 1700 when a 9.0 magnitude quake struck along the Cascadia subduction zone between California and Vancouver Island causing massive destruction

Blair: Time to get Israel recognized in the region
Addressing European Jewish Congress, former British PM says there is an opportunity to form new alliances between Israel and its neighbors. Blair also said that he sees an opportunity, for the first time ever, “to form an alliance” with Arab states, and even between Israel and its Arab neighbors.

PA arrests relatives of Arab who sold houses to Hevron Jews
In the past several days the Palestinian Authority has arrested the brother and son of a Palestinian Arab man who sold two houses to Jews in Hevron, Arutz Sheva has learned.

Eichmann’s unpublished request for pardon
Israel made public on Wednesday a decades-old handwritten plea from Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann for clemency for his role in the Holocaust, dated just two days before he was executed.

Putin to chair US$22 billion Russian crisis funding meeting – paper
President Vladimir Putin is to chair a government meeting on Wednesday over a 1.7 trillion ruble (15 billion pounds) plan to protect the Russian economy from major economic crises, the RBC daily newspaper reported, citing government sources.

Virginia resident who traveled abroad tests positive for Zika virus
The adult resident had recently traveled to a country where Zika virus transmission was ongoing and the infection was confirmed through testing by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Virginia Department of Health said in a statement.

The Republicans Who Helped Obama Ruin the Country Support Donald Trump
Let us not be naive or willfully ignorant about what is happening. Donald Trump has a far longer history of affiliation with Democrats and Democrat causes than he does conservative, populist, or Republican causes.

Americans Really, Really Hate The Government
CBS News has just released an article entitled “Americans hate the U.S. government more than ever”, and an average of recent surveys calculated by Real Clear Politics found that 63 percent of all Americans believe the country is heading in the wrong direction and only 28 percent of all Americans believe that the country is heading in the right direction.

5.2 magnitude earthquake jolts Lahore, Pak Punjab cities
The Daily Times reports it was the second earthquake to hit Pakistan in a day, first being the tremors of a powerful 5.2 magnitude earthquake that jolted Peshawar, Islamabad, with Hindu Kush Region of Afghanistan as its epicenter.

U.S. slams Taiwan president’s planned visit to contested South China Sea island
Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou’s planned trip to the Taiwanese-held island of Itu Aba in the disputed South China Sea is “extremely unhelpful” and won’t do anything to resolve disputes over the waterway, a U.S. official said on Wednesday. Ma’s office earlier announced that the president…would fly to Itu Aba on Thursday to offer Chinese New Year wishes to residents on the island…

IDF preparing for possible war on northern, Gaza borders
According to IDF estimations, the likelihood of Israel initiating a war in the next year remains low…Even so, the likelihood of a severe incident leading to an escalation and even a war has increased, and is being described by the IDF as “moderate.” This is due to the tension along Israel’s borders, especially the ones in the north and near the Gaza Strip.

US and China call for new North Korea UN resolution
China and the US say a new UN resolution against North Korea is needed, following Pyongyang’s claim that it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb earlier this month. US Secretary of State John Kerry, who is in Beijing for talks, called North Korea’s nuclear ambitions a “threat to the world” and urged new sanctions. But his counterpart Wang Yi suggested China would not support any sanctions.

Senegal detains 900 people in security drive
Police in Senegal have detained 900 people as part of a security operation following militant attacks in Burkina Faso and Mali. The detentions, which were not terror-related, took place over the weekend in the capital Dakar and Thies. The assaults on a hotel in Mali and a hotel and restaurant in Burkina Faso, both claimed by Islamists, have raised security fears in the region.

Rouhani: ‘Israel lobby’ responsible for US hostilities toward Iran
Iran could have better relations with the United States, but it was up to Washington…Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday. “It’s possible that Iran and the United states might have friendly relations. But the key to that is in Washington’s hands, not Tehran’s,” Rouhani said…He also accused the “Israeli lobby” for being responsible for US hostility towards Iran.

1,700-year-old inscriptions linked to ‘rabbis’ unearthed in Galilee
Three 1,700-year-old funerary inscriptions referring to rabbis written in Aramaic and Greek were recently unearthed in Moshav Zippori, near the Western Galilee, the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) announced on Wednesday. The finding was made following a joint effort carried out by residents of the moshav, researchers from the Kinneret Institute for Galilean Archaeology of the Kinneret Academic College, and the IAA.

Escaped inmate was ordered deported to Vietnam in 1998
One of three fugitive inmates who escaped from a California jail last week was ordered deported to Vietnam in 1998 but has been in this country racking up a lengthy rap sheet, immigration officials said Tuesday.

Israel PM says UN’s Ban ‘encouraging terror’
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Tuesday accused the UN chief of “encouraging terror” after Ban Ki-moon spoke of Palestinian frustration at Israel’s occupation and said it was natural to resist.

One dead as FBI arrests Oregon occupation leader and others
The leader of an armed occupation at a federal wildlife refuge in Oregon and others were arrested on Tuesday after shots were fired during a traffic stop, leaving one person dead and another wounded, the FBI said.

Liberty Counsel Defends Undercover Investigator of Planned Parenthood
ORLANDO, FL – Liberty Counsel is defending Susan Merritt in both the criminal indictment announced yesterday in Houston and against Planned Parenthood’s lawsuit claiming that her connection to undercover videos produced by the Center for Medical Progress, exposing Planned Parenthood’s gruesome trade in baby body parts, is a violation of the federal “Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations” or “RICO” statute.

Israel’s electrical grid attacked in massive cyber attack’
As Israelis cranked up their heaters during the current cold snap, the Public Utility Authority was attacked by one of the largest cyber assaults that the country has experienced, Minister of Infrastructure, Energy and Water Yuval Steinitz said on Tuesday.


Top Headlines 1/27/2016

‘Israel’s electrical grid attacked in massive cyber attack’

UN chief: It’s ‘human nature to react to occupation’ – Furious Netanyahu slams Ban Ki-moon for ‘stoking’ Palestinian terrorism

Netanyahu: World must stand with Israel ‘not for our sake, for theirs’

Survivors to address UN on International Holocaust Remembrance Day

UNESCO tells off Iran for Holocaust cartoon contest

Road Project Puts Israel, EU on Collision Course

PA arrests relatives of Arab who sold houses to Hevron Jews

Power: Anger over ‘settlements’ shouldn’t lead to violence

Report: Eight Hamas militants killed after heavy rains cause terror tunnel to collapse

IDF preparing for possible war on northern, Gaza borders

Israel believes Russia’s intervention decreases chance of Israel-Hezbollah conflict

Vulture with Israeli tracking device nabbed in Lebanon

Pope Francis Welcomes Iran’s President to the Vatican

Pope urges Iran to work for Mideast peace, stop spread of terrorism

Rouhani asks pope to pray for him in first visit to Rome

Romans cover their nudes for Iranian leader’s visit

Canada says will lift sanctions against Iran

Death and political jockeying precede Syria peace talks

Bombings Kill 20 in Syria as Peace Talks Invitations Go Out

Iraq says 40 bodies found in mass grave in Ramadi

Kerry to push China over North Korea nuclear activity

Thousands of Cuban Refugees Crossing the Border

Illegal immigrants, especially transgenders, ‘humiliated’ by strip-searches

Milwaukee man, 23, allegedly targeted Masonic temple in thwarted mass shooting that would ‘terrify the world’

Milwaukee man charged with terror plot had planned attack on Israelis

Australian teen arrested on terror-related charges in Sydney

One dead as FBI arrests Oregon occupation leader, four others

Obama on Supreme Court? ‘A great idea,’ Clinton says

$8,314,529,850,339.07: Debt Up $70,612.91 Per Household in Obama’s First 7 Years

Fed seen keeping interest rates steady amid market volatility

China warns Soros against ‘declaring war’ on its currency

Asian stocks struggle as oil falters, China weakens

U.S. stocks end sharply higher, lifted by oil’s rebound

OPEC, Russia talk of oil teamwork, but Saudi talks of investment

‘Doomsday Clock’ reflects grave threat to world

5.3 magnitude earthquake hits near Taron, Papua New Guinea

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Dadali, Solomon Islands

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Farkhar, Afghanistan

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Ngulu, Micronesia

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Padedewatu, Indonesia

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Taron, Papua New Guinea

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Pangai, Tonga

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Taron, Papua New Guinea

Karymsky volcano on Kamchatka, Russia erupts to 22,000ft

Colima volcano in Mexico erupts to 17,000ft

Reventador volcano in Ecuador erupts to 14,000ft

Tennger Caldera volcano in Indonesia erupts to 13,000ft

Thanks El Nino! 44-foot rise of Folsom Lake offers hope for California’s worst ever drought

Brazil ‘losing battle’ with mosquito, readies 220,000 troops for eradication effort

First case of Zika virus reported in Arkansas

At least 50 deadly swine flu cases reported in Russia

Scottish parliament has to consider legalising incest due to loophole in the devolution agreement

Discipline upheld for students accused of dorm room exorcism

Culture Mocks God But ‘Gives The Devil a TV Show’

‘X-Files’ Creator Thought FBI Was Going to Shut Down the Show

State senator wants road renamed after Creflo Dollar

Televangelist Morris Cerullo wants to build a Bible-themed resort in San Diego

20 ways pastors can become domineering bullies

Trump gets official and unofficial endorsements from two leading evangelicals

Ted Cruz’s evangelical problem

Florida: Christian schools can’t pray at championship game

Nova Scotia doctors propose rules for assisted deaths


The Briefing

1) Grand Jury’s failure to indict Planned Parenthood a judgment against our nation’s laws

2 Abortion Foes Behind Planned Parenthood Videos Are Indicted, New York Times (Manny Fernandez)

The charges against anti-Planned Parenthood filmmaker, explained, Washington Post (Danielle Paquette)

2) Some in Anglican Communion would prefer sexual revolution to biblical truth and godly order

The Anglican Communion’s un-Christian stance on marriage, Washington Post (Colbert King)

Unholy Split: On gay marriage, Justin Welby misreads history, morality and his job description, Times of London
In other news…

World Still 3 Minutes Away From Destruction, Doomsday Clock Says, TIME (Daniel White)
The New Sexual World Order Is So Confusing, The Federalist (George Fields)

Survey: Religious objections law cost millions, Associated Press (Brian Slodysko)

My Major, Myself The Atlantic (Olga Khazan)
Stay Sane America, Please! New York Times (David Brooks)

Frontrunning: January 27

  • Global stocks, dollar struggle ahead of Fed as oil falters (Read More)
  • Bond Bulls Bank on Fed Mention of Market Chaos as Drag on Growth (Read More)
  • Fees on Mutual Funds and ETFs Tumble Toward Zero (Read More)
  • China Climbs Back Up Janet Yellen’s Worry List (Read More)
  • The World’s Favorite New Tax Haven Is the United States (Read More)
  • New Jersey Gov. Christie backs Atlantic City takeover plan (Read More)
  • U.S. Universities Raised a Record $40.3 Billion Last Year (Read More)
  • With China weakening, Apple turns to India (Read More)
  • Cash Is King as Europe Adapts to Negative Interest Rates (Read More)
  • Trump pulls out of Republican debate in Iowa (Read More)
  • French Justice Minister Taubira Quits Over Constitutional Change (Read More)
  • Clock ticks down on EU passport free travel dream (Read More)
  • Yuan Bears Denounced as Delusional, Doomed by China State Media (Read More)
  • States Asks High Court to Delay EPA Carbon-Emissions Rule (Read More)
  • AIG Passes JPMorgan, Approaches Wells Fargo on Buybacks (Read More)
  • NYSE’s $2 Trillion ETF Business Sees Heightened Competition (Read More)
  • World’s Biggest Wealth Fund Speaks Out on Liquidity Banks Miss (Read More)

Americans Really, Really Hate The Government

Anger - Public DomainIf there is one thing that Americans can agree on these days, it is the fact that most of us don’t like the government.  CBS News has just released an article entitled “Americans hate the U.S. government more than ever“, and an average of recent surveys calculated by Real Clear Politics found that 63 percent of all Americans believe the country is heading in the wrong direction and only 28 percent of all Americans believe that the country is heading in the right direction.  In just a few days the first real ballots of the 2016 election will be cast in Iowa, and up to this point the big story of this cycle has been the rise of “outsider” candidates that many of the pundits had assumed would never have a legitimate chance.  Donald Trump, Ted Cruz and Bernie Sanders have all been beneficiaries of the overwhelming disgust that the American people feel regarding what has been going on in Washington. (Read More….)


What’s Coming Is Here: “Every Economic Indicator Says We Are In Economic Free Fall”

 

While central banks and governments around the world threw everything they have at the problem, their only accomplishment is that they were able to kick the can down the road a little bit further. We may now well be at the end of that road, and as Dave Hodges of The Common Sense Show notes in his latest article, perhaps it’s time we stop looking at the problem as an event or set of events that will take place at some point in the future. According to Hodges, “what’s coming is here.”

Things are much worse that they appear. We are entering a time of unparalleled peril. Economic collapse is here and is underway in many parts of the economy.

“Europe is on the verge of collapse” –George Soros

Read Full Story


Dallas Fed Region Activity Plunges to Lowest Reading Since 2009; Production Collapsed

 

In Philadelphia, all that really happened was that things got worse at a decreasing rate.

Dallas Region Collapse

The Dallas Fed General Activity Index plunged to -34.6 from a revised reading last month of -20.1. The Econoday Consensus Estimate was -14.0 in a range of -17.0 to -10.0. The production index, also plunged. Last month the index was in positive territory at 12/7. It’s now -10.2.

Read Full Story


Daily Digest

January 27, 2016

THE FOUNDATION

“An unlimited power to tax involves, necessarily, a power to destroy; because there is a limit beyond which no institution and no property can bear taxation.” —John Marshall, 1819

TOP RIGHT HOOKS

The More Voters See of Clinton, the More They Don’t Like

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According to the most recent Fox News poll, Hillary Clinton is bleeding followers nationally. A month ago, she was riding a wave of 56% support among Democrats. Sanders had a 34% following and 4% of the respondents didn’t know who they would support. In the poll conducted Jan. 18-21, Clinton’s support dropped to 49%, Sanders is up to 37% and 10% of Democrats don’t know who they should support in the rapidly approaching primaries.

One of the factors driving uncertainty in the Democrat Party is that her campaign might suffer a sudden death if Clinton is prosecuted by the FBI for mishandling classified information — more bad news dropping this week. The other is that Clinton’s policies lack the pop that Sanders’ have. For instance, Sanders said he wants to hike taxes so that the government confiscates another $20 trillion over 10 years. Clinton’s tax plan proposes raising taxes by $498 billion over that same period — comparatively weak sauce for “progressives” wanting to stick it to the “rich.”

According to an analysis by the Tax Foundation, Clinton’s tax proposal would shrink U.S. GDP by 1%. Furthermore, as Reince Priebus, chair of the Republican National Committee, said, “Hillary Clinton’s tax hike plan is an absolute disaster. Not only do Clinton’s tax increases fail to pay for her $1.2 trillion spending spree, they will slow economic growth, drive down wages, and kill the equivalent of hundreds of thousands of full-time jobs.” And to think that the economic damage caused by Clinton’s tax hikes will be nothing to what Sanders might unleash on the economy.

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CBO Lowers ObamaCare Enrollment Prediction

Both the Obama administration and the “nonpartisan” Congressional Budget Office predicts a lackluster number of Americans signing up for health care through the federal exchange. In October, the administration estimated there would be 10 million signups in 2016, a modest increase from 2015. The CBO this week, however, revised down its prediction for the number of people getting their health care through Barack Obama’s system. Last year, the CBO estimated 20 million Americans would use ObamaCare in 2016, but now they say it’ll be just 13 million. Remember: The actual numbers of signups have come in well below past projections. Still, the Obama administration has just enough wiggle room to call the downgraded numbers a “success.”

But as the editorial board for The Wall Steet Journal pointed out, “The truth is that liberals can either adapt to the same economic reality that businesses confront or they can keep their regulations in the name of fairness and social justice. If they continue to do the latter, they may find the system is so fair that no one can afford to participate.” The economic winners in the years after ObamaCare was implemented were the large insurance companies. But as WSJ reports, the profit margin for UnitedHealth Group has shrunk to 3.7% from 4.3%. While all other sectors of its business have made money, the health care exchange has cost the company money, thanks to the rules the Obama administration established. As a result, UnitedHealth Group is threatening to leave the ObamaCare exchange, which would be a clear sign the whole system is not working.

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Wages Lead to Trouble in Walmart-Land

Walmart has announced that it’s closing 154 stores, most of them the company’s Express stores operating in small communities. After moving into rural communities, and often choking out independent small businesses, Walmart is tweaking its business model. The reason? The rising cost of wages has overtaken the profit margins of those stores. On one hand, Walmart raised wages to keep workers, but it also announced the move in response to political pressure to raise the minimum wage. $15 an hour, anyone? The company also backed out of establishing stores in the District of Columbia, making the city’s liberal politicians “blood mad.” After all, the stores would have created jobs in some of the city’s poorest neighborhoods, while providing options for residents to buy groceries and goods. This led the editors at Investor’s Business Daily to write, “Sorry, but forcing employers of unskilled, largely untrained labor to pay higher prices for their labor is a recipe for automation, layoffs and no job creation. It punishes the poor, unskilled and uneducated most of all. The leftist demagogues who push this nonsense should be ashamed.” And liberal politicians wonder where the jobs have gone.

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FEATURED RIGHT ANALYSIS

Strange Bedfellows Lead to the Iowa Caucus

By Louis DeBroux

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With the Iowa caucuses less than a week away, the Republican race is the strangest nomination process in memory. After the flame-out of both establishment favorites and conservatives with experience, the race is quickly coming down to Donald Trump and Ted Cruz, though Marco Rubio may still have an outside shot. How did we get here?

Cruz is loathed by the GOP establishment as a “whack job” because of his unbending allegiance to conservative principles, and for calling out the GOP leadership and establishment for their failures to govern according to the promises on which they campaigned.

Trump is the circus sideshow, a lifelong liberal Democrat with New York values, a reality TV star and casino mogul supposedly without a chance of winning the more conservative Southern states — an absolute must for any Republican. He’s the narcissist who can’t stand to be out of the limelight, and he’ll insult anybody and everybody to get attention. He’s proclaimed he won’t participate in Thursday night’s debate moderated by Fox News, all because he’s seemingly afraid of Megyn Kelly, whom he’s already grossly insulted. Instead, he claims, he’ll host an event to raise money for veterans. We’ll believe it when we don’t seem him on stage, but has there ever been a politician with thinner skin?

But a funny thing happened along the way. Cruz quietly built up an impressive campaign war chest that made him a force to be reckoned with, and his principled conservative record and message, plus his refusal to attack Trump, led to a steady rise in the polls. Trump has defied all political wisdom and held a perpetual lead in the polls based almost entirely on his unapologetically un-PC rhetoric and his brash (if inconsistent) populism on illegal immigration, combating Islamic terrorism, and the economy. Angry voters consider him the best vehicle to express their outrage.

Cruz took the lead in Iowa about a month ago, and he immediately became the target of the GOP establishment — to whom he has been a huge thorn in the side. The establishment clearly prefers a “dealmaker” like Trump. That began to take its toll, and was compounded when the Trump/Cruz détente ended shortly before the last debate. Trump concern trolled about Cruz’s eligibility and began calling him a “nasty” person who can’t get along with anyone in DC. We thought that was a virtue to Trump supporters, but apparently not. Because out comes Trump, boasting that he can get along not only with the GOP establishment, but with Democrats like Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer.

It’s a testament to just how much blinding hatred there is among the GOP base for the party’s leadership that Trump — who is seen by the vast majority of his supporters as a stick in the eye to the GOP establishment — is the frontrunner. He is the establishment’s creation. Trump is the byproduct of a base that had to watch government grow under George W. Bush, grow even more under Obama, and see two historic wave elections in the last two mid-terms wasted when Republican majorities in the House and Senate caved again and again to the demands of Obama and the Democrats. Trump is seen by his supporters as a no-holds-barred, take-no-prisoners candidate who will do whatever it takes to win.

Nothing The Donald says or does seems to bother his supporters — he brags, “I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose any voters” — even when those things would render any other candidate unsupportable to the conservative base. Conservatives were outraged at John Boehner for not doing enough to repeal ObamaCare, and they drove him out of office. Yet just a few months ago Trump came out in support of single-payer health care, just like avowed socialist and Democrat candidate Bernie Sanders.

Trump was also for defunding Planned Parenthood one week before he was against defunding Planned Parenthood.

The GOP establishment, which not too long ago warned that Trump would be the death of the Republican Party, is now coming out of the woodwork to extol Trump’s deal-making virtues, saying he is someone they can work with to get things done, unlike Cruz.

In recent days, Trump has received endorsements or de facto endorsements from such GOP moderates and former losers like Bob Dole, or from Republicans like Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, who are fearful of losing their special privileges under a President Cruz (Cruz has come out against subsidies for ethanol, which brings in enormous federal money into Iowa, and Branstad’s son runs an ethanol lobbying group). Even evangelical leaders like Jerry Falwell Jr. have endorsed Trump.

One would think that Cruz would epitomize for the conservative base the ideal candidate. He is constitutionalist and a strict constructionist who has argued before the Supreme Court nine times as Texas’s solicitor general. He has been unwavering in his conservative, constitutional principles, even when that means enduring the slings and arrows of not only the Leftmedia and the Democrats (we repeat ourselves), but the GOP establishment and its go-along-to-get-along ways. He is a family man who clearly loves America as the Founders envisioned it. Yet he is trailing Trump in the polls.

Iowa is a strange animal, and the caucuses take much more time, effort and commitment by each candidate’s supporters than just voting in a primary. It is the die-hards who turn out. Will Trump’s supporters turn out for him and seriously hamper Cruz’s run at the presidency? Will the embrace of Trump by the GOP establishment as a willing partner to their schemes erode support among Trump’s base? Has Cruz slipped in the polls as much as the media claim? Is Trump inevitable at this point?

We’ll know in less than a week.

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MORE ORIGINAL PERSPECTIVE

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

For more, visit Right Opinion.

TOP HEADLINES

For more, visit Patriot Headline Report

OPINION IN BRIEF

Hans von Spakovsky and Andrew R. Kloster: “The undercover videos that CMP released certainly seem to show that Planned Parenthood employees were trying to receive much greater compensation for the organs of aborted babies than a simple reimbursement of costs. They talk about getting ‘top dollar’ and discuss different prices for various organs. Handling and transportation costs are not going to change whether you are harvesting — what a euphemism for what is really going on — a liver or a heart. You even have one Planned Parenthood executive caught saying she needed to get the right price for aborted organs because she wants ‘a Lamborghini,’ which, if it was a joke, was an atrocious one. The point, however, is that if the grand jury believes that [David] Daleiden should be charged with offering to buy a human organ, based on the videos, it almost inconceivable that the same grand jury would not also conclude that Planned Parenthood should be charged with violating the same statute by offering to sell him human organs. The entire context of the video involves a complicated haggling process, but only one of the two parties appears to actually intend to go through with the illegal sale — and that party is Planned Parenthood. … Law professor Ron Rotunda … told us that Texas Gov. Greg Abbott should stop this abusive prosecution by pardoning the two defendants and then ask that a new prosecutor investigate Planned Parenthood’s apparent trafficking in body parts.”

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SHORT CUTS

Insight: “We have on the one hand a desperate need; hunger, sickness, and the dread of war. We have, on the other, the conception of something that might meet it: omnicompetent global technocracy. Are not these the ideal opportunity for enslavement? This is how it has entered before; a desperate need (real or apparent) in the one party, a power (real or apparent) to relieve it, in the other.” —C.S. Lewis (1898-1963)

Upright: “We are in a moment of constitutional crisis. America already has one post-constitutional party; we don’t need another. We have a president who does not believe in executive restraint; we do not need another. I am not endorsing any candidate; I am urging conservatives to hold every candidate accountable to keeping their word so that we uphold the Constitution’s system of checks and balances. I’m pro-Constitution and if that makes me anti-Trump, that’s Mr. Trump’s problem.” —Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE)

For the record: “No Donald on the debate on Thursday? First let me say: I will believe it when I see it. However this is not surprising if you follow the pattern of Donald Trump. We already have a president who will not talk to Fox News. Now Donald Trump? Only liberal progressives block Fox.” —Glenn Beck

Flashback: “Michele Bachmann just dropped out of prez race — when she didn’t do the Newsmax debate it showed great disloyalty and people rejected her.” —Tweet from Donald Trump on Jan. 4, 2012

Fair share: “We will raise taxes, yes we will.” —Bernie Sanders on how he’ll fund Medicare For All

Braying Jackass: “[T]he Republican Party and the right-wing news entertainment media complex have spent more than eight years trying to find new ways to call Barack Obama — and by extension black Americans en masse — a ‘nig—’ without actually using the slur.” —Salon’s Chauncey DeVega

Alpha Jackass: “It’s unfortunate that the entire country is a racist country. … We are living in a country that discriminates and has certain racial tendencies — racist tendencies. … Generally speaking, we’re a bunch of racists.” —Hollywood director Danny DeVito

Late-night humor: “A lot of people got stranded over the weekend and flights were canceled. There was more than two feet of snow in Washington, DC, and New York. All nonessential federal workers in Washington, DC, were told to stay home. … How do you know if you’re nonessential? Do they call you? ‘Steve, I have some good news and some bad news. Good news is you have the day off today. Bad news, you’re worthless.'” —Jimmy Kimmel

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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.

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Why Donald Trump Threatens to Trump the Gospel

Why Donald Trump Threatens to Trump the Gospel

Posted on January 27, 2016 by Christianity Today

There is something more important than our views of the controversial candidate.

Read Full Article »


Is It OK for Christians to Drink Alcohol?

Is It OK for Christians to Drink Alcohol?

Posted on January 27, 2016 by Christian Post

Is it OK for pastors and Christian leaders to drink alcohol? For Jamie Morgan, lead pastor of New Jersey-based Life Church, the answer to that question is a resounding &no.&

Read Full Article »


As Falwell Favors Trump, Pew Says Most Americans Still Want a Religious President

As Falwell Favors Trump, Pew Says Most Americans Still Want a Religious President

Posted on January 27, 2016 by Christianity Today

However, survey also finds Trump is one of few candidates who doesn’t have to be religious to be deemed great.

Read Full Article »


Voters warm to candidates who are not religious

Voters warm to candidates who are not religious

Posted on January 27, 2016 by Religion News

(RNS) Americans still prefer a strongly religious president but it’s no longer essential, a new survey finds.

Read Full Article »


World marks International Holocaust Remembrance Day

World marks International Holocaust Remembrance Day

Posted on January 27, 2016 by Religion News

The anniversary, marked each year since 2005, falls on the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp in Poland by the Russian army in 1945. One million people died there.

Read Full Article »


Joel Rosenberg talks about how Obama's nuke deal could unleash Iran's Apocalyptic Muslims

Joel Rosenberg talks about how Obama’s nuke deal could unleash Iran’s Apocalyptic Muslims

Posted on January 27, 2016 by Christian Examiner

Joel Rosenberg gives a shocking explanation of Apocalyptic Islam.

Read Full Article »


A Lesson in Context: Don't Forget the Other Half of the Verse!

A Lesson in Context: Don’t Forget the Other Half of the Verse!

Posted on January 27, 2016 by Crosswalk

You probably know James 4:7 – &Resist the devil and he will flee from you.& But do you remember the first half of the verse? The part with the condition in it?

Read Full Article »


Are You Asking Your Man to Walk in Faith Like a Woman?

Are You Asking Your Man to Walk in Faith Like a Woman?

Posted on January 27, 2016 by Crosswalk

We have expectations of our men that are too high for them to meet. That’s because we’re unintentionally expecting them to be more like women, than men.

Read Full Article »


Do We Understand the Danger of Emotional Abuse?

Do We Understand the Danger of Emotional Abuse?

Posted on January 27, 2016 by Crosswalk

The things we say can cut deeper than any scalpel, and the Bible has warned Christians more than once about the damage our words can inflict.

Read Full Article »


Healthcare sharing ministries gaining members

Healthcare sharing ministries gaining members

Posted on January 26, 2016 by World Magazine

HEALTHCARE | Amid Obamacare woes, healthcare sharing ministries are gaining members in healthy numbers

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Why We’re Where We Are (Part 2)

If we think the strange fire coming from Rick Warren, Bill Hybels, and Andy Stanley is new, let us think again. Each of these men minimize belief in Bible prophecy; an intended outcome of that is the marginalization of Israel. If the Old Testament prophecies concerning the Jews’ eternal possession of the Holy Land is in question…then today’s state of Israel is perhaps illegitimate and her national claims on the land are certainly illegitimate.

View Article


Pope Francis to Get Involved in Mideast Peace?

VATICAN CITY — Iran’s president paid a call on Pope Francis at the Vatican Tuesday during a European visit aimed at positioning Tehran as a potential top player in efforts to resolve Middle East conflicts, including Syria’s civil war.

View Article


Evangelicals flocking to Trump

Among white evangelical Republican voters nationally, Trump earned the support of 37 percent, while Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, whose father is a pastor and has played a key role in recruiting faith leaders to support his son, is at 20 percent.

View Article


Discernment: What’s Love Got to Do with It?

When it comes to spiritual discernment, Bible study author, speaker and blogger Michelle Lesley urges believers to know the distinction between personal preferences and biblical doctrine. For example, does “speaking the truth in love” simply mean being nice? Ephesians 6:10-19 states that Christians are at war with spiritual powers of wickedness. So, what are some of […]

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Pope Francis Holds Closed-Door Political Meeting With Iran President Hassan Rouhani

The Vatican meeting was a key part of the Iranian effort to take a more prominent place on the world stage after the nuclear deal with Western powers.

“For God hath put in their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled. And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.” Revelation 17:17,18 (KJV)

EDITOR’S NOTE: Revelation 17 and 18 say that the Whore of Babylon, commonly known as the Vatican, will “reign over the kings of the earth” politically, economically and spiritually. So today’s unprecedented meeting at the Vatican between Pope Francis and Iran’s president is fascinating. Here we have Pope Francis and the Vatican controlling a Muslim nation like Iran, making political deals and ending it with the Muslim president actually asking the Roman Pope to “pray for him”. It’s like Revelation 17 is LEAPING off the pages and into the headlines. Francis is getting very close to trading in his pope’s fish hat for a king’s crown.

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis held talks with Iran’s president at the Vatican Tuesday, calling on Tehran to play a key role in stopping the spread of terrorism as Iran tries to improve its image in the global arena following an agreement on its nuclear program.

Holy See: Iranian Pres. Rouhani and Pope Francis exchange gifts in Vatican visit

The pontiff warmly clasped the hand of President Hassan Rouhani in the first official call paid on a pontiff by an Iranian president since 1999. They held 40 minutes of private talks before Rouhani met with other top Vatican officials.

The talks “delved into the conclusion and application of the nuclear accord, and the important role that Iran is called upon to play, together with other countries of the region, was highlighted,” the Holy See said.

It added that that role should “foster adequate political solutions to the issues plaguing the Middle East, fighting the spread of terrorism and arms trafficking.”

The “cordial” talks also stressed common spiritual values, the statement said.

Usually it’s the pope who asks his audience to pray for him. This time, after the two men spoke with the help of Italian and Farsi language translators, it was the guest who asked the pope for prayers. “I ask you to pray for me,” Rouhani said.

The Vatican meeting was a key part of the Iranian effort to take a more prominent place on the world stage after the nuclear deal with Western powers.

Iran, which agreed to limit its nuclear activities in exchange for an end to economic sanctions, is eager to carve out a bigger role in mediating Middle East conflicts. Pope Francis’ papacy has emphasized mediation and conflict-resolution, including his role in helping Cuba and the United States to normalize their relations.


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Video Clip: David Barton Prays For The Holy Spirit To Speak Through New Age Mormon Glenn Beck Before He Speaks For Ted Cruz Rally
http://www.worldviewweekend.com/news/article/watch-video-clip-david-barton-prays-holy-spirit-speak-through-new-age-mormon-glenn-beck


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False Teachers Love Ted Cruz: Now Ted Boasts of Endorsement by Mike Bickle of International House of Prayer

http://www.worldviewweekend.com/news/article/false-teachers-love-ted-cruz-now-ted-boasts-endorsement-mike-bickle-international-house


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Would You Want Your Pastor to Endorse a Political Candidate and Campaign With Them?

 

Why and how do pastors lower their credibility, damage the gospel, and confuse the mission of the church when they get into a spiritual enterprise with politicians? Topic: David Jeremiah, James MacDonald, Kirk Cameron, and Casting Crowns take part in a Ben Carson political event that his campaign called a “prayer worship experience”. Why would Jeremiah, MacDonald, and Cameron want to hold a spiritual event with a Seventh-Day Adventist, or any politicians for that matter? Do they now agree with the false religion of the Seventh-Day Adventist? Brannon explains the proper way for evangelicals to respond is simply to pick the political candidate they want to support and support them on the issues and stop mixing the calling of the church, worship services, and theology with politics. The mission and purpose of civil government is not the same as the mission of the church. Support whatever candidate you want but stop turing political campaigns into religious or spiritual causes. Evangelicals need to stop trying to make a political campaign a spiritual event.

Topic: Why the rise of Donald Trump? Phyllis Schlafly explains why and Brannon will read it to you. National Review says social justice evangelicals like Russell Moore of the Southern Baptist Convention are to blame for the rise of Trump. Brannon says he believes that Trump is rising because Americans realize the two-party system is really one system something he has said for years. Brannon also believes the American people are sick of the neo-conservatives that are funded by the globalists and military industrial complex that makes a fortune on war and nation building. Brannon also explains why he believes many of the American people look at who the super scary religious right nuts embrace and then run from those candidates. Seriously; do you want your national leaders listening to religious right zealots that want to take over every power-center and all governments so they can usher in their religious theocracy based on their twisted eschatology and theology? So whether you support Trump or do not support Trump, the reason for his rise is largely to blame on the rats nest in a wood pile that is made up of politicians, neo-cons, the pro-family industrial complex, and religious right zealots and liberal media. The American people are sick of all of these groups and their self-serving agendas that can be traced by following the money.

Click here to listen now:
http://www.worldviewweekend.com/radio/audio/brannon-howse-january-26-2016


phyllis schlafly.jpg

Will the Republican Establishment Stand Down?
http://www.worldviewweekend.com/news/article/will-republican-establishment-stand-down


Obama Continues Caving to Iran While Taking Credit for Diplomacy
http://www.worldviewweekend.com/news/article/obama-continues-caving-iran-while-taking-credit-diplomacy


How Long, O Lord? Steadying Our Soul in the Midst of the Storm

How Long, O Lord? Steadying Our Soul in the Midst of the StormSatan is filled with fury against Christians because he knows he’s already lost, and his time here is short.

Listen Now


12 Reasons People Give Up On The Church

Most, if not all, of us know someone who attended church but then simply gave up on God’s people. Based on my work with churches and the unchurched, here are some of the reasons I’ve heard:

  1. They see nothing different in Christians. They come looking for the difference the gospel makes, but they find only people who act like the rest of the world acts.
  2. They hear nothing but judgment. Presented lovingly, judgment is part of helping people see their need for Jesus. The problem is that they too often hear it presented unlovingly.
  3. They hear only stories and humor. They come to church desperately wanting to hear something from God to help them with their chaotic lives, but they instead hear little or nothing from the Word.
  4. Nobody connects with them. They may come with some desire to be anonymous, but most do not come with a hope of being ignored. When nobody talks to them, they see little reason to keep coming.
  5. They see no relevance in its message. Frankly, I lay this issue at the feet of preachers. If we don’t help folks know how to apply the Word in their lives, they leave with head knowledge rather than heart change.
  6. Somebody hurt them or their family. Sure, they need to forgive and press on – but some folks aren’t there yet. They carry their anger with them and depart the church.
  7. They have other options today. Via the Internet, they can “attend” church virtually and listen to sermons electronically. And, they can do that without putting on their “church” clothes.
  8. Everything is “over their head.” Nobody taught them the basics of Christianity. They struggle understanding what they hear – and they’re too embarrassed to ask for help.
  9. They’re tired of church drama. Some of the most ridiculous interpersonal fights I’ve ever seen have been among believers. It’s no wonder some people walk away from the silliness.
  10. Nobody answers their questions. “Just because the Bible says so” isn’t always the best answer for seekers who are asking honest questions in their spiritual quest.
  11. They feel unneeded. They’d love to get involved, but no one’s asked them. As far as they know, the church doesn’t need them.
  12. They’re not ready for the commitment. When they really do hear the gospel, they hear its call to give up self. Those who aren’t ready for that commitment avoid its call by leaving the church.

What other reasons have you heard?


Check Out

Blogs

Having Trouble in Ministry? Just Face it. Literally
“I remember a particular ‘green’ moment in my first year of full-time ministry when I asked the guys during a staff meeting (this was about 4 months in), ‘Is it always like this?’ To which they lovingly responded, ‘It is Mach IV with your hair on fire. Buckle up. Heaven will be great.’ This was during a particularly tumultuous time, but it has nevertheless characterized ministry. Those of you who are in ministry know what I am talking about.”

Yes, Your Pastor Needs a Sabbatical
“Focused, intentional rest doesn’t come easy, because we have become addicted to productivity. Our inability to faithfully rest is due to a number of things, yet at the top of the list is an unhealthy drive to perform, control, and produce. The affects are that we can slowly begin to forget that God can keep things going without us.”

30 Pieces of Advice for the New Wife
This sweet post is from a 3-month-old wife. If you’ve been married for more than a few years or have kids, you’ll have a good laugh at the beautiful ideals!

Visual Theology: Seeing and Understanding the Truth About God (Coming Soon!)
An upcoming book from Tim Challies and Josh Byers. “In this book, we have made the deepest truths of the Bible accessible in a way that can be seen and understood by a visual generation. We have prepared what we see as a theology of the Christian life, a book that explains the ‘now what?’ of living as a Christian. It is ideal for the new or seasoned believer.”

The Great Ebook Battle of 2016
Ebooks or print? Which do you prefer?

Handwriting Helps You Learn – Business Insider
“Typing is fast. Handwriting is slow. Weirdly, that’s precisely why handwriting is better suited to learning.”

Kindle Books


Women of the Word: How to Study the Bible with Both Our Hearts and Our Minds by Jen Wilkin ($4.99)


The Pastor’s Family: Shepherding Your Family through the Challenges of Pastoral Ministry by Brian and Cara Croft ($3.99)


The Gagging of God: Christianity Confronts Pluralism by D. A. Carson ($3.99)


A Place for Weakness: Preparing Yourself for Suffering
by Michael S. Horton ($3.99)

New Children’s Book

God’s Servant Job: A Poem with a Promise by Douglas Bond ($4.99 Kindle, $9.99 Paperback)

Video

From Ivy League to Furniture Maker


12 Church Enemies

Every pastor will eventually have to face enemies within the church, people who are dedicated to damage and even destroy them. As these enemies have a range of motives and methods, and can be deadly if not recognized early, here’s a selection of the kinds of enemies that can be found in many churches (some belong to more than one category – some belong to all!)

Open Enemies: They are in-your-face, out-and-out, no-holds-barred, to-the-death enemies.

Secret Enemies: They undermine you and oppose you behind your back, in secret, in private conversations.

Procedural Enemies: They use ecclesiastical rules and procedure to tie you in knots, to obstruct you, to stymie proposals, to humiliate you in front of others.

Voting Enemies: They reserve their opposition for church courts and congregational meetings. No matter what you propose, they are against it. You could propose that “This Church believes in breathing” and you know you’ll have one vote in the “No” column.

Wounded Enemies: You crossed swords with them a few years ago, maybe a doctrinal argument or the discipline of a family member. Those wounds have never healed and now they are just waiting for the right time to exact vengeance.

Financial Enemies: There will almost always be somebody who thinks the pastor is earning too much or spending too much. Although these enemies are often some of the wealthier members, they love to cut the pastor’s salary or benefits.

Doctrinal Enemies: They oppose what you teach and use every opportunity to attack it and to spread the opposite message.

Liturgical Enemies: They like your doctrine but oppose the content or style of worship. They aren’t called “worship wars” for nothing.

Prove-me-right Enemies: They voted to call another pastor but lost. Now they’re just longing for you to fail so that they can be proven right.

Deserved Enemies: You wronged someone, you humiliated someone, you broke a promise to someone, you acted foolishly towards someone, you annoyed someone. Now they hate you. Your sin brought it upon you. You deserve to have these enemies. You earned them.

Campaigning Enemies: Not satisfied with being enemies on their own, they recruit others to their side and build an army of enmity.

Surprising Enemies: One minister told me that the couple who welcomed him and his family most at the beginning were the same ones at the vanguard of driving them out of the ministry some years later. They smothered them with love at first, then tried to smother them at the last.

Smiling Enemies: They rarely stop to talk with you, but simply flash an extra-stretch smile as they pass you. Their dagger eyes tell the true story.

I’m sure there are other enemies you can think of, but regardless of how many they are or what kind they are, we must respond in the same way — fury, retaliation, vengeance, imprecations, anathemas, fire and brimstone, waterboarding, and anything else that will cause them maximum pain for maximum time.

Eh, not quite.

“Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” (Matt. 5:44-45).


11 Questions to Ask Ourselves About Debt

It’s one thing to trust God to provide for our present needs (Matthew 6:33). It’s another to presume upon Him by dictating (via a decision to incur debt) the terms of His future provision. By choosing to go into debt, we twist God’s arm to provide not only for our needs, but also our wants.

Do we believe God knows best what our needs are? Debt spends money we don’t have. So isn’t our decision to go into debt proof that we believe we need more than God has given us? If we don’t have the resources to buy something, and if we feel such need for it that we’re borrowing to get it, aren’t we saying God has failed to meet our needs?

If God knows best, and if He knows what we need, then why hasn’t He provided sufficient funds? Is He encouraging us to pray for provision rather than take things into our own hands by borrowing? In this age where we seem unwilling to wait for anything, does God want us to learn what it means to “wait on the Lord” (Psalm 27:14; Isaiah 30:18)?

Before we go into debt, we should ask ourselves the following questions:

1. Is debt our way of getting around depending on God? (Why trust God to provide when we can get a loan?)

2. Is debt our means of short-circuiting the God-created means of acquisition—including work, saving, planning, self-discipline, patience, and waiting for divine provision?

3. What message are we sending to God when we go into debt rather than live on what He has provided? What are we really saying when we take out a loan? How does it reflect on our view of God? What are we saying about His sovereignty, goodness, wisdom, or timing?

4. What effect will going into debt today have on our ability or willingness to tithe and give voluntary offerings tomorrow?

5. What effect will today’s decision to go into debt have on tomorrow’s freedom to follow God wherever He wants us to go?

6. By taking out a loan that commits us to make payments over a number of years, are we presuming upon God? (Certainly, if we will require more income to make the payments, we’re presuming on God. We may “know” that we’ll receive a promotion and pay raise in September, but God hasn’t guaranteed it. Plans change, companies go out of business, and employees fail to get “certain” promotions.)

7. Although our income today might be enough to make debt payments over the next twenty years, is it right to assume that we’ll continue to generate the same level of income? (Many people’s income increases over the years, but many others’ decreases. Many incur increased financial commitments beyond their control, such as health-related expenses or caring for an elderly relative. People get laid off. Has God promised that can’t happen to us?)

8. Are we mortgaging the future to pay for the whims of the present? Are we mortgaging God by supposing to commit Him to pay off something He may disapprove of?

9. Is debt our way of getting around depending on God? of circumventing prayer, patience, and waiting on God to provide?

10. If we “must” go into debt to provide for our “needs,” is it because our “needs” are really wants in disguise? Have we spent so much money on our wants that there’s not enough left for our needs? Have we robbed God and forfeited His financial blessing by failing to give Him the firstfruits?

11. Have we really exhausted all other avenues to avoid going into debt? Have we given up expensive activities, hobbies, and memberships, and liquidated valuable possessions? (Often, we think we have no choice but to go into debt, when in fact we’re making many unnecessary choices that drive us toward it.)

One of the strongest arguments for not going into debt is that we’re not God. We’re not sovereign, omniscient, or omnipotent. James 4:14 warns that we cannot know what will happen tomorrow. And if we don’t know and cannot control all that the future holds, how can we be sure that we can pay off new debts? We can be certain that God will provide for our basic material needs if we seek first His kingdom (Matthew 6:25-34), but where does the Bible promise that God will provide for all the debts we incur though our own greed, impatience, or presumption?

If we are seeking first His kingdom, will we put ourselves in bondage to debt?

Photo credit: Death to the Stock Photo


The Daily Discovery (January 27, 2016)

headerImage-dailyDiscovery

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

Selfie Righteousness – “Christians truly are a unique bunch. We are in the world, but not of it. We strive to serve our Lord Jesus Christ well in the midst of a world that is hostile to Him and to His message. We know we have been called out of this world because, in reality, we are citizens of a heavenly kingdom.”

An Open Letter to Women Considering Abortion – “Last week I attended the march for life in Washington D.C. which is a yearly peaceful protest of the Roe v. Wade decision from 1973. As we were marching down the road with the snow falling from the sky, with thousands of people and signs everywhere, my eyes caught a sign that made the whole event come to life for me.”

Abortion Is Everyone’s Issue – “Conversations about abortion can be grim and bleak. There are a lot of facts we can’t shy away from or ignore. The reality is that, from 1973 – 2015, 55 million babies were aborted in the United States alone. The majority of these abortions were performed for convenience, not because of a medical emergency. This is more lives lost than the Holocaust of World War II. More than the communist regime of Stalin in the former Soviet Union. This is a terrifyingly huge number, and it’s not even a worldwide number; we’re only talking about the U.S. here.”

My Husband’s Cancer and the Lord of Steadfast Love – “I was far from perfect in the storm of my husband’s cancer diagnosis. I was weak. I envied every couple I saw. Hand-holding love birds rubbed salt in my wounds.”

Calvin On The Substance Of The Covenant Of Works – “Because what God so severely punished must have been no light sin but a detestable crime, we must consider what kind of sin there was in Adam’s desertion that enkindled God’s fearful vengeance against the whole of mankind. To regard Adam’s sin as gluttonous intemperance (a common notion) is childish.”


SERMON:

Mike Leake – Equipped for Messy Ministry


VIDEOS:

Rob Bell & “The Shack” Blaspheme GOD

How to know God’s will for your life.


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

The post The Daily Discovery (January 27, 2016) appeared first on Entreating Favor.


A La Carte (January 27)

Today’s Kindle deals include Rejoicing in Lament by Todd Billings ($2.99); Twelve Extraordinary Women by John MacArthur ($1.99); New Atheism: A Survival Guide by Graham Veale ($2.99); Hope Reborn by Adrian Warnock ($1.99); Though He Slay Me by Jamie Freeman ($1.99); Men of Science, Men of God by Henry Morris ($2.99); The Formation of Christian Doctrine by Malcolm Yarnell ($2.99).

Announcing the all-new PrayerMate v5

One of my favorite everyday apps has gotten an update. I was part of the beta test and have already enjoyed this new version.

Do Something Small For God

I think we all need these reminders from time to time. “We can feel like if we don’t do something great for God, why bother. Well, here’s what God says: ‘Do small things for me.’”

Prescribing Hospitality for Growth in the Christian Life

Here’s an interesting take on the value of showing hospitality to others.

Having Trouble in Ministry? Just Face It

How do you respond when there is trouble in life and ministry? Erik Raymond shows why you need to just face it.

11 Questions to Ask Ourselves About Debt

This is the kind of stuff Randy Alcorn does so well.

This Day in 417. 1,599 years ago today, Pope Innocent I condemned and excommunicated Pelagius. *

The Small Group Book for 2016

Westminster Books has quite a few items on sale including one they are calling “the small group book for 2016.”

The History of London

I’m not sure about the 40,000-year bit, but this is brief video history of London is beautifully done.

The Big Chill

Melissa Kruger: “We sit across the table from one another. Tears brim. I speak the painful words I have contemplated with so many: Sometimes the loneliness in marriage is lonelier than being alone. She nods.”

Beeke

A sermon is not over when the minister says ‘Amen.’ Rather that is when the true sermon begins. —Joel Beeke


9 Things That Worked in the Church a Decade Ago That Don’t Today

Posted: 27 Jan 2016 06:48 AM PST

(Carey Nieuwhof) So you entered into church leadership full of enthusiasm and fresh ideas. And for a season, a lot of those ideas worked. You saw your ministry grow, people come to faith and the mission advance. But times change. And—these days especially—culture is changing faster than ever before. As a result, the shelf life of ideas, assumptions and approaches is shorter than it has ever been. What used to work, doesn’t. Not anymore. The challenge is to know what’s stopped working and what hasn’t. Not everything that worked a decade ago in the church was great. But the truth is many churches saw growth anyway. And that’s changing and will continue to change. What got you here won’t get you there. Here are nine things that used to work in ministry a decade ago that aren’t nearly as effective as they used to be.

1. Relying on an automatic return to church
There was a day when you could fairly safely assume that once young adults got married and had a child, they would automatically come back to church. Those days are gone or largely gone. (You can catch more about what’s changed in Episode 24 of my podcast where I interview David Kinnaman, President of Barna Group.) The average unchurched person doesn’t think about going to church any more than the average Christian thinks about going to synagogue. It just doesn’t cross their mind. Having an exceptional next generation ministry that reaches out to the community is critical. Want a better way to impact families? I know of no better approach than this. The Orange strategy is the strategy we use, and our kids’ ministry is the fastest growing ministry at our church. You can’t assume families will reach out to you, so you need to reach out to them. FULL LIST

The post 9 Things That Worked in the Church a Decade Ago That Don’t Today appeared first on End Time Headlines.

DEVELOPING: Apple’s Safari browser is crashing on iPhones and Macs worldwide

Posted: 27 Jan 2016 06:38 AM PST

Apple’s Safari browser appears to be experiencing issues worldwide this morning. Searching from the address bar in both iOS and OS X is causing the browser to crash in some instances. The Verge has confirmed the problem on several of our own iOS devices and at least one OS X machine. Steven Troughton-Smith, an iOS developer, notes that the problems are related to Safari’s search suggestions feature.

Simply disabling this feature will stop Safari crashing, or using the private mode option in the browser as a temporary workaround. Not everyone is affected, and this could be because some have the search suggestions cached locally or they’re still able to reach Apple’s servers thanks to a DNS cache. The Verge has reached out to Apple for comment on the problems, and we’ll update you accordingly. CONTINUE

The post DEVELOPING: Apple’s Safari browser is crashing on iPhones and Macs worldwide appeared first on End Time Headlines.

China has cyber capability to take down U.S. power grid, warns NSA

Posted: 27 Jan 2016 06:35 AM PST

The U.S. is vulnerable to cyber attacks from China and other countries capable of shutting down the power grid and disabling vital infrastructure, according to Admiral Michael Rogers, head of both the National Security Agency and the U.S. Cyber Command. Rogers recently warned the House Intelligence Committee: “We’re seeing multiple nation-states invest in those kinds of capabilities.” Cybersecurity firm Mondiant confirmed that China had hacked into U.S. utility systems and has the knowledge potential to exploit vulnerabilities and shut down or disrupt them.

Rogers says this could allow Chinese hackers “to shut down very segmented, very tailored parts of our infrastructure that forestall the ability to provide that service to us as citizens.” Such an attack could have catastrophic effects, to say the least. Rogers agreed with recent predictions that a major cyber attack will occur within the next decade: “It is only a matter of the when, not the if, that we are going to see something traumatic.” China is not the only player in the cyber warfare game. Although Rogers declined to name other countries involved, it’s generally acknowledged that Russia has advanced cyber warfare capabilities. CONTINUE

 

The post China has cyber capability to take down U.S. power grid, warns NSA appeared first on End Time Headlines.

China warns Soros against ‘declaring war’ on its currency

Posted: 27 Jan 2016 06:30 AM PST

Not long after billionaire George Soros forecast a so-called hard landing for the Chinese economy, Beijing fired back by calling out the high-profile investor, warning him of betting against its currency, according to media reports Tuesday. “Soros’ challenge against the renminbi and Hong Kong dollar is unlikely to succeed, there is no doubt about that,” said a government official in an opinion piece widely cited by several media outlets.

The article headlined, ”Declaring war on China’s currency? Ha ha,” was published by the People’s Daily, the official newspaper of the Chinese Communist Party which is widely viewed as Beijing’s propaganda tool. A translation of the Mandarin version of the editorial linked by ZeroHedge includes references to the U.S. suffering from a “Dutch disease” and “financial predators.” Reports of the People’s Daily’s article follow Soros’ recent prediction that a precipitous slowdown in the Chinese economy is inevitable. CONTINUE

The post China warns Soros against ‘declaring war’ on its currency appeared first on End Time Headlines.

This Simulation Shows What Would Happen If an Earthquake Caused a Mega-Tsunami

Posted: 27 Jan 2016 06:25 AM PST

With the East Coast buried in snow from a megastorm sparking our natural-disaster competitiveness, we on the Pacific Rim can counter with an ocean-crossing tsunami generated by a historic megathrust earthquake. The last one that erupted along the 600-mile-long fault of the Cascadia Subduction Zone in the Northwest was at 9 p.m. on Jan. 26 in the year 1700. Hopefully the next one won’t hit any time soon, but another is due every 300-500 years. So, we can thrill in the thought of that magnificent danger!

 

In fact, on Friday, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center published a re-enactment of the massive waves in a model animation. Here’s the explanation from the Center’s YouTube page: By comparing the tree rings of dead trees with those still living they could tell when the last of these great earthquakes struck the region. The trees all died in the winter of 1699-1700 when the coasts of northern California, Oregon, and Washington suddenly dropped 1-2 m (3-6 ft.), flooding them with seawater. That much motion over such a large area requires a very large earthquake to explain it—perhaps as large as 9.2 magnitude, comparable to the Great Alaska Earthquake of 1964. CONTINUE

The post This Simulation Shows What Would Happen If an Earthquake Caused a Mega-Tsunami appeared first on End Time Headlines.

The Religious Distraction

Posted: 27 Jan 2016 06:21 AM PST

(Ryan Johnson) There is a major problem that seems to grow within every movement of Holy Spirit among different leaders and denominations that must be addressed in our time before we fail to see the reality of unity in the Body of Christ. It’s become so common that many have begun to accept it as a part of ministry although it’s the furthest thing from what is Biblical. How easy of a snare that it is and how quick we are to be trapped within the grips as a simple bait that the enemy continues to use for division among the Church. So, what exactly are we talking about here? I am talking about the distraction that causes us to miss the attraction.

Remember the passage of scripture found in John 8:1-11? In the scriptures we discover the story of a woman that was brought before Jesus because she had been caught in adultery. You know, the woman that was brought before a crowd in her humiliation. The one where the religious leaders of the day demanded that Jesus give a verdict of punishment, according to the Law of Moses. The scripture where Jesus took the time to actually write in the sand. Got it? Good, let’s dive into this some more for clarity to how we must overcome the issue before us today. CONTINUE

The post The Religious Distraction appeared first on End Time Headlines.

MILITIA LEADER JAILED: Ammon Bundy, 7 others arrested after gun battle at highway traffic stop kills 1

Posted: 27 Jan 2016 06:15 AM PST

The leader of a group of armed protesters who had occupied a federal wildlife refuge in eastern Oregon for 24 days was arrested along with four others Tuesday after a traffic stop prompted gunfire that reportedly left the group’s spokesperson dead and another person injured. The FBI and Oregon State Police arrested Ammon Bundy, 40, his brother Ryan, 43, Brian Cavalier, 44, Shawna Cox, 59, and Ryan Payne, 32, at around 4:25 p.m. local time on U.S. Highway 395.

Three other people were arrested separately. The FBI said Joseph O’Shaughnessy, 45, and Peter Santilli, 50, were arrested in the nearby town of Burns, Ore. Hours later, authorities said Jon Ritzheimer, 32, turned himself in to the Peoria, Ariz., police department. The FBI said all eight face a federal felony charge of conspiracy to impede officers of the United States from discharging their official duties through the use of force, intimidation or threats. CONTINUE

The post MILITIA LEADER JAILED: Ammon Bundy, 7 others arrested after gun battle at highway traffic stop kills 1 appeared first on End Time Headlines.

Trump says he won’t participate in GOP debate on Fox News

Posted: 27 Jan 2016 06:09 AM PST

Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump abruptly announced here Tuesday that he would not participate in Thursday’s scheduled debate, escalating his off-and-on feud with Fox News Channel and throwing the GOP campaign into turmoil. Trump’s assertion, which his campaign manager insisted was irreversible, came less than one week before the kickoff Iowa caucuses. He once again defied the conventional rules of politics, and used his power and prominence to shape the campaign agenda and conversation.

So far, Trump’s untraditional moves have only expanded his support, but his threatened boycott leaves him open to criticism that for all his tough talk he is ducking face-to-face confrontations with his opponents and scrutiny from the Fox moderators. Given Trump’s past flirtations with boycotting Fox, many will doubt his declaration until they see the other candidates take the debate stage on Thursday night without him. CONTINUE

The post Trump says he won’t participate in GOP debate on Fox News appeared first on End Time Headlines.

Top Headlines

 Muslim Extremists from Sudan Suspected of Burning Church Building in South Sudan
 Pro-Life Actor and Football Player Attend March for Life Rally
 Church Treasurer Who Stole Over $400,000 from Offerings Reports to Jail
 Man behind Undercover Planned Parenthood Videos Indicted by Grand Jury
 Franklin Graham: ‘I’m Surprised and Disappointed’ Wheaton Faculty Supports Hijab-Wearing Professor
 Chinese Pastor Who Protested Removal of Crosses is Dismissed from Church
 Saeed Abedini Opens up about Torture in Iranian Prison
 News Anchor Accidentally Ends Broadcast by Saying ‘In Jesus’ Name’
 The Hands and Feet of Christ in Burkina Faso: Slain Missionary Gave His Life to Service
 The Revenant Leaves Us Feeling Cold

Opinion

 The GOP and Donald Trump’s Perfect Storm
 Do Christians Understand the Danger of Emotional Abuse?
 Finding the Pool of Siloam: Another Testament to the Bible’s Accuracy
 The Show ‘Lucifer’ Makes the Devil ‘Charming’
 What You Need to Know about Prosperity Gospel Pastors

Featured Blogs


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.


What Is the Gospel?

There is no greater message to be heard than that which we call the gospel. But as important as that is, it is often given to massive distortions or over simplifications. People think they’re preaching the gospel to you when they tell you, ‘you can have a purpose to your life’, or that ‘you can have meaning to your life’, or that ‘you can have a personal relationship with Jesus.’ All of those things are true, and they’re all important, but they don’t get to the heart of the gospel.

The gospel is called the ‘good news’ because it addresses the most serious problem that you and I have as human beings, and that problem is simply this: God is holy and He is just, and I’m not. And at the end of my life, I’m going to stand before a just and holy God, and I’ll be judged. And I’ll be judged either on the basis of my own righteousness–or lack of it –or the righteousness of another. The good news of the gospel is that Jesus lived a life of perfect righteousness, of perfect obedience to God, not for His own well being but for His people. He has done for me what I couldn’t possibly do for myself. But not only has He lived that life of perfect obedience, He offered Himself as a perfect sacrifice to satisfy the justice and the righteousness of God.

The great misconception in our day is this: that God isn’t concerned to protect His own integrity. He’s a kind of wishy-washy deity, who just waves a wand of forgiveness over everybody. No. For God to forgive you is a very costly matter. It cost the sacrifice of His own Son. So valuable was that sacrifice that God pronounced it valuable by raising Him from the dead – so that Christ died for us, He was raised for our justification. So the gospel is something objective. It is the message of who Jesus is and what He did. And it also has a subjective dimension. How are the benefits of Jesus subjectively appropriated to us? How do I get it? The Bible makes it clear that we are justified not by our works, not by our efforts, not by our deeds, but by faith–and by faith alone. The only way you can receive the benefit of Christ’s life and death is by putting your trust in Him–and in Him alone. You do that, you’re declared just by God, you’re adopted into His family, you’re forgiven of all of your sins, and you have begun your pilgrimage for eternity.


The Gospel on 5 Fingers

If you picked up a hitchhiker (not that I recommend doing that) and he saw a Bible on your car seat and said, “I’ve heard about this thing called the Gospel – can you explain it to me before you drop me off in one minute up the street?” What would you say?

Can you explain the gospel in 30 seconds? In one minute? In five minutes?

Here’s one way I have found helpful. The five main components of the gospel can be remembered on 5 fingers of one hand. Here they are:

1) Jesus’ birth
2) Jesus’ life
3) Jesus’ death
4) Jesus’ resurrection
5) Jesus’ ascension

Obviously each point can be elaborated on depending on how much time you have. Here’s the short version:

1) Jesus’ birth – Jesus, God himself, the creator of the universe, the Messiah, became a human being – took on flesh, and was born of a virgin.

2) Jesus’ life – Jesus lived a life of perfect obedience to his Father. Though he was tempted in every way as we are, he never once sinned.

3) Jesus’ death – on the cross, Jesus himself took all our sins and paid for them. God the father counted all our sins to Jesus as if he himself had personally committed them. Then Jesus bore God’s wrath towards sin – the punishment we deserved – as a substitute for us.

4) Jesus’ resurrection – within 3 days, Jesus rose physically from the dead, proving that his sacrifice for sins have been accepted by God, since the punishment for sin was death. Jesus was seen by numerous people after he rose including 500 at one time (1 Corinthians 15).

5) Jesus’ ascension – Jesus ascended physically into heaven where he reigns as King of kings and Lord of lords. And someday he will return to the earth.

That’s the gospel, the good news, and if we believe in Jesus Christ and this good news and call upon him he will save us from our sins and give us eternal life.

That’s a simple way to remember the gospel – five fingers. Even a child can do it. So ask God to give you opportunities to share his good news today.


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


Truth2Freedom Blog Disclaimer

This post was originally posted on:

https://truth4freedom.wordpress.com

(Alternative News, Apologetics, Current Events, Commentary, Opinion, Theology, Discernment Blog, Devotionals, Christian Internet Evangelism & Missions Activist).

“A simple layman armed with Scripture is to be believed above a pope or a council without it…” – Martin Luther

“In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.”

— Augustine

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Are Mormons Christian?

A Ruby In The Rough

Via Triablogue:

Joseph Smith, Jr. (1843 photograph)“We have no desire to become a part of mainstream Christianity. We do want to be better understood and appreciated for what and who we are, but we are not traditional Christians and have never claimed to be. We do in fact see ourselves as Christians with a difference. Mormonism professes to be restored Christianity, and its adherents believe that God has chosen to restore the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ through a modern prophet, Joseph Smith, and that the divine priesthood authority he received—the power and authority to act in the name of God, apostolic authority—has continued in rightful succession to modern apostles and prophets within The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints today.”

~Robert L. Millet, Coordinator, Office of Religious Outreach, Professor Emeritus of Religious Education, Brigham Young University

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/rogereolson/2015/06/robert-bob-millett-gets-the-final-word-for-now/

Photo: Photograph of Joseph Smith, Jr. by Lucian Foster, 1843.

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The one and only true Gospel

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

23 Then if anyone says to you, ‘Behold, here is the Christ,’ or ‘ There He is, ’ do not believe him. 24 For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect. (Matthew 24:23-24 NASB)

I will be 65 years old later this year. I have been a Christian for over 30 years, but I grew up in a “Christian” home going to church every Sunday until I grew up and went my own way. I know that Christians are commanded to be forgiving, kind, and gentle with others. However, we are also commanded to stand firm and withstand false teachers and their doctrines. When I began writing and blogging as an extension of my teaching ministry, I soon experienced a very rude awakening. When I wrote about things that were experiential and not…

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January 26, 2016 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report (US•World•Christian)

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Jan. 26, 2016

BLOOMBERG

President Obama will propose in his budget to let small employers more easily pool their 401(k) plans, in an effort to encourage them to offer the retirement accounts as fewer U.S. workers enjoy pensions. Obama also will propose in his 2017 spending plan next month making it easier for job-hopping workers to keep track of multiple retirement accounts and combine them. He wants Congress to provide $100 million to test new, more portable accounts.

Home prices in 20 U.S. cities rose at 5.8 percent, a faster pace in the year ended November, underscoring the shortage of supply amid steady demand.

Across the U.S., the story is much the same. The world’s economic woes — from China to Russia to South America — are damping sales in the high-end real estate market. Haywire overseas stock markets and dropping currency values caused in part by plummeting oil prices are dulling demand for mansions, penthouses and winter escapes.

American International Group (AIG) plans to return $25 billion to shareholders over the next two years as Chief Executive Officer Peter Hancock divests assets and seeks to boost returns to protect his job amid criticism from activist investor Carl Icahn.

The risks from Zika virus sweeping through the Americas are serious enough that some countries are telling their citizens to put off getting pregnant for months or even years.

De Beers sold $540 million of diamonds in its first sale of the year, more than double the amount at the biggest producer’s previous offering.

China’s biggest energy company predicted the nation’s refineries will increase output in 2016, exacerbating a fuel glut and boosting exports of the surplus to regional markets. Net export of oil products — which strips out imports — will rise by 31 percent this year to 25 million metric tons.

Nigeria’s central bank disappointed financial markets by ignoring calls to devalue the currency, while keeping its benchmark interest unchanged at 11 percent to help support an economy hit by plummeting oil prices.

AP Top Stories

Air strikes by the Russian military in support of forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad have helped turn the tide in Syria, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.

Cuba’s tourism industry is under unprecedented strain and struggling to meet demand with record numbers of visitors arriving a year after detente with the United States renewed interest in the Caribbean island.

A man in China who enjoyed eating raw beef became infected with a parasite – a 20-foot-long tapeworm -that came from including this food in his diet, a new case report reveals.

A woman posting on a channel called Umm Isa Amrikiah on the Telegram messenger app called out male Islamic State sympathizers as hypocrites and urged them to “get off their couches” and kill Westerners.

Pope Francis will celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation by attending an ecumenical service in Sweden as a guest of the Lutheran church, the Vatican said Monday. In a highly symbolic act of reconciliation that would even recently have been unthinkable for a Catholic pontiff, Francis will visit the Swedish city of Lund on October 31 for a commemoration jointly organized by his own inter-faith agency and the Lutheran World Federation (LWF).

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday criticized Soviet founder Vladimir Lenin, accusing him of placing a “time bomb” under the state, and sharply denouncing brutal repressions by the Bolshevik government.

Undocumented immigrant families are being detained at the United States border in numbers not seen since 2014, suggesting that the surge in illegal immigration that summer was not an aberration but the establishment of a new normal.

The amount of sea level rise that comes from the oceans warming and expanding has been underestimated, and is likely about twice as much as previously calculated, German researchers said Monday.

U.S. Secretary of States John Kerry met Cambodian leaders on Tuesday but failed to secure their commitment to a more robust stance with Southeast Asian nations against China’s pursuit of territorial claims in the South China Sea.

A U.S. judge granted Planned Parenthood class action status on Monday for its challenge to Arkansas’ ban on Medicaid funding to the health care provider over videos secretly recorded by an anti-abortion group.

BBC

Government forces have retaken control of a strategically important town in southern Syria, activists said.

Brazil’s government says it will deploy 220,000 soldiers in its fight against mosquitoes spreading the Zika virus. The soldiers will go from home to home handing out leaflets on how to avoid the spread of Zika, which has been linked to thousands of babies being born with underdeveloped brains.

US President Barack Obama has said he will ban solitary confinement as a form of punishment for juvenile and low-level offenders in federal prisons.

WND

The Central Intelligence Agency has declassified hundreds of documents about unidentified flying objects that have been held as secret for some time. Mostly, the documents hail from the 1940s and 1950s.

Harvard University has been awarded $28 million to investigate why brains are so much better at learning and retaining information than artificial intelligence. The award, from the Intelligence Advanced Projects Activity, could make AI systems faster, smarter and more like human brains.

Italy is gearing up for a tidal wave of as many as 400,000 immigrants “in the coming weeks,” according to Italian sources, and worse still, they will be coming to stay.


Top News – 1/26/2016

Thunder Energies Discovers Invisible Entities
Thunder Energies Corp (TNRG:OTC) has recently detected invisible entities in our terrestrial environment with the revolutionary Santilli telescope with concave lenses (Trade Mark and patent pending by Thunder Energies). Thunder Energies Corporation has previously presented confirmations of the apparent existence of antimatter galaxies, antimatter asteroids and antimatter cosmic rays detected in preceding tests. In this breaking news, Thunder Energies presents evidence for the existence of Invisible Terrestrial Entities (ITE)

‘X-Files’ Creator: ‘I Thought The FBI Was Going To Shut Me Down’
Creator, writer and director Chris Carter tells a real-life tale about the show in its early days that’s worthy of the show’s catchphrase, “The truth is out there.” “I had someone come up to me during the original run of the series, who said they worked in some high place in a secret government agency, [and] said that we were very close to the truth,” Carter told The Huffington Post. all of a sudden, as we got close to airing, the FBI called and said, ‘Who are you and what are you doing?’ And for a second, I thought it was going to be the long arm of the law coming in to shut me down.”

Swine flu OUTBREAK: 72 more deaths as killer disease continues its spread across Europe
AN OUTBREAK of swine flu has killed 72 more people and is putting thousands more lives in danger as the deadly virus continues to spread across eastern Europe. Up to 40,000 people are expected to contract the disease in the Ukaine capital Kiev, where residents are covering their faces with masks or scarves.

Disney sued for ‘replacing theme park workers with cheap migrant labour’
Leo Perrero and Dena Moore, who used to work at Walt Disney World in Florida, have launched lawsuits against the entertainment giant and two consulting companies. They have alleged that Disney is colluding with firms HCL Inc and Cognizant to abuse temporary visas meant to fill specialty occupations.

Migrant crisis RIPS EU apart: Schengen agreement SCRAPPED amid final bid to avert chaos
TURMOIL within the European Union has grown as bewildered leaders agreed to scrap its founding principle of free movement in response to the escalating migrant crisis. Ailing Brussels staggered ever closer to its own grave with the announcement the flagship Schengen agreement, for so long thought indispensable, is being shelved because of the refugee chaos.

Vatican Announces Today Pope Francis Will Attend 500th Anniv Of Protestant Reformation Ceremony
In a gesture that would even recently have been unthinkable for a Catholic pontiff, Francis will visit the Swedish city of Lund on October 31 for a commemoration jointly organised by his own inter-faith agency and the Lutheran World Federation.

New World Paradigm: Russia, Iran and China Make a Strong Team
Cooperation between Russia, Iran and China might signal a formation of a new world paradigm, able to re-define the global situation in the world both politically and strategically; the recent developments in the relations between the three might be more significant than many realize, according to an American investigative journalist.

Jump this! Olympics to let men compete as women
How long will most female athletic teams last if they’re all open to males?” Kinsolving asked at the time. The world is about to find out, with the International Olympic Committee announcing it will allow transgenders in virtually all athletic competitions without undergoing reassignment surgery. That means men competing against women in various sporting events. “They ought to make good boxers and power lifters,” commented Jim Hoft at The Gateway Pundit.

Israeli economy experienced deflation in 2015
Israel has negative inflation for unprecedented second consecutive year, while the Bank of Israel is not expected to drop interest rates to halt the worrying trend.

Moderate earthquake, 5.2 mag has occurred near Ndoi Island in Fiji
A moderate earthquake magnitude 5.2 (ml/mb) strikes 119 km E of Ndoi Island, Fiji (74 miles) on Monday. A tsunami warning has not been issued (Does not indicate if a tsunami actually did or will exist).

New Earthquake of Magnitude 4.9 Hits Northern Morocco
This is the third earthquake that hits the region in the last four days. Last Thursday, a quake with a magnitude of 5.9 on the scale of Richter his was recorded off Nador in the same region.

Magnitude 5.8 earthquake strikes off Papua New Guinea
An earthquake of magnitude 5.8 struck off the Pacific Ocean nation of Papua New Guinea on Tuesday, the U.S. Geological Survey said. The earthquake, about 169 km (105 miles) southeast of the town of Rabaul, hit at a depth of 46 kilometres. There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties.

China shares end at 14-month lows after late selling frenzy
Chinese shares plunged more than 6 percent to 14-month lows on Tuesday after oil prices dropped again, reviving concerns about global growth and prompting a sell-off in the world’s equity markets. Battered by a late selling frenzy, the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index .SSEC ended down 6.4 percent at 2749.79 points, its lowest close since Dec. 1, 2014.

Islamic State setting up terror training camps in Europe, police agency warns
Terror group Isil has set up secret training camps across Europe to prepare fighters to carry out “special forces style” attacks in the UK or other EU countries, Europol has warned. The international police agency said apart from bases in Syria, the barbaric organisation had “smaller scale training camps in the EU and Balkan countries”.

Filmmakers who targeted Planned Parenthood face charges
A Texas grand jury has cleared Planned Parenthood of misconduct after the abortion provider was accused of selling foetal body parts for profit. Instead, the panel charged the filmmakers behind the accusations with tampering with government records. The Center for Medical Progress (CMP) secretly filmed videos that caused an outcry and prompted efforts to withdraw Planned Parenthood’s federal funding.

Fatal stabbing at asylum centre shocks Sweden
Sweden’s prime minister has described as a “terrible crime” the stabbing of a 22-year-old female employee at a centre for young asylum seekers. Prime Minister Stefan Lofven visited the centre for unaccompanied migrants in Molndal, near Gothenburg, hours after the killing. An asylum seeker of 15 was arrested on suspicion of murder. The victim has been named locally as Alexandra Mezher.

Denmark to vote on controversial migrant assets bill
The Danish parliament will vote on Tuesday on a highly controversial proposal to confiscate asylum seekers’ valuables to pay for their upkeep. The proposal drew sharp criticism at home and abroad when it was announced earlier this month. Danish authorities insist the policy brings migrants in line with jobless Danes, who must sell assets above a certain level to claim benefits.

The Death Knell For ‘Peak Oil’
Hedge funds and private equity groups armed with $60bn of ready cash are poised to snap up the assets of bankrupt US shale drillers, almost guaranteeing that America’s tight oil production will rebound as soon as prices start to recover. Daniel Yergin, founder of IHS Cambridge Energy Research Associates, said it is impossible for OPEC to knock out the US shale industry though a war of attrition even if large numbers of frackers fall by the wayside over coming months.

Life In The Internet Outhouse
I’ll never regret the day I dumped social media down the toilet. There was a brief time, back in the early days of social media, when I had both a Facebook and a Linked-In account. This was long before the revelations of Edward Snowden. This was long before I came to view the Internet as a technology that – more often that not – is highly detrimental to intelligence, attention span, human interaction, basic courtesy and common sense.

ISIS builds stronghold in Libya: Obama and Hillary ignore their handiwork
The very mention of Libya by Democrats only serves to remind many Americans about a chapter in recent history that doesn’t advance the progressives’ plan for America’s future. The U.S.-led overthrow of dictator Muammar Gaddafi, the ensuing chaos, violence and destruction by Islamists, and the tragic terrorist attack at a U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, has created a political firestorm for both President Barack Obama and presidential wannabe Hillary Clinton, Obama’s handpicked Secretary of State.

Campaigns target charitable offering and church tithing
Political spin has done more than enter the realm of defining terms such as charity, church, offering and tithing. It has skewed, sullied and merged the whole concept of each one of these. How? Government intervention for the purpose of raising revenue to sponsor itself and those who leach off of it, from elected officials to bureaucrats and welfare junkies. Picking up the ball, campaign groupies continue to muddle meanings for their own ends.

“Gangs” Of “All-Male” Moroccan Migrant Children “Take Over” Stockholm Train Station; Steal, Grope, Beat Women
“Stockholm police estimate that at least 200 Moroccan street children move in the area around the main train station in the centre of the capital, sleeping rough, and living off criminal activity. They grope girls between their legs, and slap them in the face when they protest. All police officers are aware of this.”

Could the eastern US face more snow later this week?
As millions of people dig out and recover in the wake of the Blizzard of 2016, many are wondering when the next snowstorm will hit. Another storm bears watching on Friday.

Argentina Scrambles to Fight Biggest Plague of Locusts in 60 Years
Farmers and fumigators in Argentina are running out of time as they scramble to control the country’s worst plague of locusts in more than half a century, officials warned on Monday.

Peace talks between Damascus & opposition to start January 29 – UN Syria envoy
Talks between Damascus and the Syrian opposition will begin on January 29, the UN’s Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura has told journalists in Geneva. The negotiations will focus on a broad ceasefire, stopping Islamic State militants and increasing aid, he added.

‘Slow-moving’ earthquake continues march south through Western Washington
Also known as “slow earthquakes,” the tremors are a phenomenon that occur along the Cascadia Subduction Zone every 12-15 months. The latest began Dec. 22, 2015, according to the seismic network. They subsided for a time, but resumed in the past several days. The latest tremors were recorded in areas including South Kitsap, Olympia, and Tacoma.


Top Headlines – 1/26/2016

PA threatens to force Israel to withdraw from Judea and Samaria

Palestinian media spurring wave of terror

Hamas deputy leader praises media for supporting the ‘intifada’

Woman killed, another wounded in terror stabbing in West Bank settlement store

Canada to send ‘tough message’ on violence to ally Israel

France trying to get Netanyahu and Abbas to meet

National Public Radio illustrative photo wipes Israel off the map

Lapid: US helped Iran fund its next war against Israel

Hillary Clinton Chokes When Discussing Iran In Front Of Jewish Federation

Coughing fit silences Clinton’s promise to stop Iran

Faced with new ISIS threat, Israel readies itself for possible confrontation

PM: The world sees Israel as a highly sought-after commodity

Netanyahu to EU states: Pressure Brussels to change its attitude toward Israel

Europol: ISIS planning large scale attacks in Europe

ISIS planning ‘special forces-style’ attacks in Europe, report says

Islamic State Plans Attacks From Camps in Europe, Europol Says

Schengen kaput? ‘Possibility exists’ EU leaders will reintroduce internal border controls

UK uproar over requiring asylum seekers to wear wristbands for food

ISIS Has Whole Fake Passport ‘Industry,’ Official Says

Head of Syrian opposition team says not optimistic about peace talks

Report: Double bomb attack kills 22 in Homs

Russia aware of ISIS militant training in Georgia near its border

IS in Afghanistan: We will bury them, says President Ghani

Syrian opposition groups accuse Kerry of working to maintain Iran’s dominance of Syria

Khamenei: God delivered US sailors into our hands

Rouhani: Creating jobs in Iran is key to combating terror

Iran’s Rouhani visits Italy, France in hopes of reestablishing trade with Europe

Italian PM says new business accords with Iran ‘just the beginning’

New documentary on Saudi royal family centers on sex, drugs and murder

UN Seeks Over $500 Million to Help Nigerian, CAR Refugees

Rome central train station evacuated because of terror alert

JFK allowed passengers arriving on international flight to exit without going through Customs

Lavrov: Russia won’t allow West to punish it for independent foreign policy

U.S. Treasury accuses Russia’s Vladimir Putin of serious ‘corruption’

Russian economy hit by oil price slide

Chinese stocks dive more than 6% as oil falls

Global stocks, dollar fall as oil sell-off resumes

Dow closes down 200 points as oil plunge, growth concerns weigh

Saudis ‘will not destroy the US shale industry’

The death knell for “peak oil”

Feds foresee $30 trillion debt, blame looming tax hikes and Obamacare

68% of Americans destroy credit before age 30: Survey

Brexit ‘would trigger economic and financial shock’ for UK

How 37 Banks Became 4 In Just 2 Decades, All In One Astonishing Chart

If killer robots arrive, the Terminator will be the least of our problems

Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists to announce what time it is on the Doomsday Clock

5.8 magnitude earthquake hits near Taron, Papua New Guinea

5.7 magnitude earthquake hits near Tobelo, Indonesia

5.3 magnitude earthquake hits the Fiji region

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Ndoi Island, Fiji

‘Slow-moving’ earthquake continues march south through Western Washington

Popocateptl volcano in Mexico erupts to 20,000ft

Tengger Caldera volcano in Indonesia erupts to 13,000ft

Sinabung volcano in Indonesia erupts to 12,000ft

Sheveluch volcano on Kamchatka, Russia erupts top 12,000ft

Just a Coincidence That Historic Blizzard Named ‘Jonas’ Hit D.C. on Roe v. Wade Anniversary?

State of emergency declared in Jerusalem over snow storm

East Asia cold snap ‘kills 85 in Taiwan’

Damage from two destructive Northern California fires exceeds $1 billion in insured losses

Ohio town may be the next Flint with its water crisis

Harvard is trying to build an AI as fast as the human brain

Argentina Scrambles to Fight Biggest Plague of Locusts in 60 Years

Zika virus to spread to all but 2 countries in the Americas, WHO predicts

Two Cases Suggest Zika Virus Could Be Spread Through Sex

Thailand: Dozens Quarantined After Carrier of Deadly MERS Virus Visits Bangkok

Monkeys genetically modified to show autism symptoms

Childhood obesity ‘an exploding nightmare’, says health expert

What’s causing the rise in STDs in L.A. County and how can technology help?

Grand jury indicts pro-life investigator behind baby part videos, clears Planned Parenthood

Transgender Athletes Will No Longer Be Required to Undergo Surgery to Participate in Olympic Games

Virgin Mary’s ‘Tears’ Soaking Apartment Wall, Drawing Hundreds of Worshipers

Controversial historian David Barton, misinterpretations, errors, and Glenn Beck

Charisma Mag Favorably Compares Jim Bakker to…..William Branham?

Kirk Cameron, James MacDonald, David Jeremiah Support Carson’s Christian Creds

Poll: Evangelicals flocking to Trump

Indiana Democrat Facing Murder & Drug Charges Sworn in Behind Bars

33 Under 33 Who Are Shaping The Next Generation Of Our Faith

Americans are world’s most charitable, top 1% provide 1/3rd of all donations

Judge Forces Company To Pay Guy Who Wanted To Use Women’s Bathroom $115,000

Houston Grand Jury Clears Planned Parenthood, Indicts Filmakers Instead
Houston prosecutor is a long time Planned Parenthood board member


The Briefing

1) Every presidential election boils down to a choice between competing worldviews

Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders Battle for Party’s Future, New York Times (Patrick Healy)

The Democrats Stumble Toward 50 Shades of Socialism, TIME (Joe Klein)

2) Character, conviction, and worldview must be central in determining how a Christian votes

Hey reporters: Donald Trump tries to woo Iowa evangelicals, by attending liberal church?, Get Religion (Terry Mattingly)
In other news…

IOC relaxes guidelines on transgender athletes, Washington Post (Stephen Wilson)
The UN’s Push for “Same-Sex Marriage”, Public Discourse (Paul Coleman)


ZeroHedge Frontrunning: January 26

  • China shares end at 14-month lows after late selling frenzy (Read More)
  • China Dec gold imports through Hong Kong highest since 2013 (Read More)
  • China Contagion Fades as European Stocks Pare Drop, Oil Rises (Read More)
  • Apple set for slowest ever iPhone sales growth (Read More)
  • Saudis, Russia Seen by Iraq as More Flexible on Oil-Output Cuts (Read More)
  • China Probes NEV sector for subsidy fraud (Read More)
  • J&J forecasts 2016 sales below analysts’ estimates (Read More)
  • Wider China-Hong Kong Discrepancy Revives Fake Trade Doubts (Read More)
  • German two-year yields hit new low as March ECB cut almost priced in (Read More)
  • AIG to Sell Broker-Dealer Network (Read More)
  • At $3.68 Million, This California Home Has Everything But Buyers (Read More)
  • Pimco to Vanguard Step Into Credit Fray to Buy High-Grade Bonds (Read More)
  • Vacant Office Spaces Pile Up in Houston  (Read More)
  • Khomeini Grandson Barred From Iran Poll in Blow to Reformers (Read More)
  • Germany’s Cautious Savers Find New Taste for Risk (Read More)
  • In coastal New Jersey, a flood of criticism for Christie follows storm (Read More)
  • European Stability Mechanism head rules out haircut for Greek debt  (Read More)
  • One Salmon Costs More Than Barrel of Oil as Slump Deepens (Read More)

January 25, 2016
Constitution means no more to Donald than to Obama
ALAN KEYES — Elitist faction media outlets are now reporting that elitist faction money powers identified with the GOP are moving to Donald Trump. Donald Trump, born into enormous wealth, has added to his fortune by working with various of those powers… (more)

January 25, 2016
BYRON YORK — On Friday and Saturday, the New Hampshire Republican Party held its final big event before the February 9 GOP primary. The First-in-the-Nation Presidential Town Hall, at the Nashua Radisson, attracted the local officials, activists, and politicos who make up the state GOP establishment…. (more)

January 25, 2016
WORLDNETDAILY — Historian and Thomas Jefferson scholar David Barton says the choice is clear when it comes to the 2016 presidential candidate Thomas Jefferson would endorse. “Jefferson would eliminate 80 percent of the candidates,” said Barton. But after that, he said, “one of the last guys standing would be [Ted] Cruz.”… (more)

January 25, 2016
PAUL BREMMER — Christians in America should not hesitate to engage in national affairs, according to minister and national speaker Rafael Cruz…. (more)

January 25, 2016
ROBERT KNIGHT — “War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength.” In George Orwell’s dystopic novel “1984,” the totalitarian Big Brother regime issues perverse edicts reflecting the opposite of what is said…. (more)

January 24, 2016
NEWSMAX — A new anti-Donald Trump super PAC has a new ad using interviews the Republican front-runner has had over the years to illustrate his liberal positions on issues ranging from universal health care to stronger gun control…. (more)


January 24, 2016
BRYAN FISCHER — Donald Trump’s appeal to evangelicals is by now well known, from his warm reception at Liberty University, “Two Corinthians” and all, to his now-frequent mentions of his great relationship with God and his great relationship with evangelicals…. (more)


January 23, 2016
THOMAS SOWELL — Those of us who like to believe that human beings are rational can sometimes have a hard time trying to explain what is going on in politics. It is still a puzzle to me how millions of patriotic Americans could have voted in 2008 for a man who for 20 years – – TWENTY YEARS – – was a follower of a preacher who poured out his hatred for America in the most gross gutter terms…. (more)

January 23, 2016
ERICK ERICKSON — In 2013, the tea party rallied to Matt Bevin against Donald Trump. RedState and tea party groups around the country swung into action in an ultimately unsuccessful bid to get Matt Bevin through the primary against Mitch McConnell. We were completely out-funded by establishment interests and Washington lobbyists…. (more)


January 23, 2016
TWITCHY — Some news to report out of Las Vegas where Donald Trump sat down with Field & Stream magazine for an interview during the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s annual SHOT Show. First up, the GOP front-runner came out against letting states control public lands now run by the federal government saying, “I don’t like the idea because I want to keep the lands great, and you don’t know what the state is going to do”… (more)


January 23, 2016
GREG COROMBOS — It’s well known that many Republicans in Washington do not like Sen. Ted Cruz, but the full extent of that antipathy is coming to light this week as several current and former lawmakers say they prefer Donald Trump as the GOP nominee, although they have little regard for either man…. (more)

January 23, 2016
CLIFF KINCAID — With the release of the British report into the role of the Russian government in the death of former KGB agent Alexander Litvinenko in London, some attention is returning to how President Vladimir Putin murders his perceived enemies. Last November, in one of the most sensational cases, the Russian creator of the propaganda channel, Russia Today (RT), Mikhail Lesin, was found dead in a Washington D.C. hotel room…. (more)

January 23, 2016
MIRROR — The two Russians accused of killing Alexander Litvinenko contaminated a British embassy with radiation – locking it down for months. The agents left a trail of deadly polonium behind after they went there to deny poisoning the rebel spy with it…. (more)


January 23, 2016
ANDREW C. MCCARTHY — Another day, another double-take reading the New York Times. The latest shoe in the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s scandalous mishandling of classified information dropped heavily this week…. (more)

January 22, 2016
WASHINGTON EXAMINER — Today in Washington, tens of thousands of people will venture out into an historic blizzard on the National Mall, to march for the most fundamental right of them all – – the right to life…. (more)


January 22, 2016
THE HILL — Some money from Iran’s sanctions relief is likely to go to terrorists, Secretary of State John Kerry acknowledged Thursday. Still, he said, he has yet to see that happen, adding there will be consequences if Iran uses the money to fund terrorism…. (more)

January 22, 2016
NEWSMAX — Establishment Republicans are coming out for Donald Trump, but “what it really signifies is their hatred for Ted Cruz,” radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh said on his program Thursday…. (more)

January 22, 2016
NEWSMAX — Donald Trump is “a menace to conservatism” who should not be elected president of the United States, 22 conservative leaders argue in the new issue of National Review…. (more)


January 22, 2016
BRENT BOZELL — Longtime conservative leader Richard Viguerie has a simple test for credentialing a conservative: Does he walk with us?… (more)

January 22, 2016
GLENN BECK — As the election of 2008 approached, America was in crisis. And as we would soon learn, that crisis would not go to waste. Years after Bill Clinton disingenuously claimed that the era of big government was over, Obama won his party’s nomination by promising its furious revenge…. (more)

January 22, 2016
FOX NEWS — “I don’t intend to insult Donald Trump. In fact, I like Donald. I respect him,” Ted Cruz said to Sean Hannity Wednesday night before he responded to Donald Trump’s latest attacks. Cruz went on to say that Trump will continue cronyism and corporate welfare if he’s sent to DC. Cruz also believes the establishment is now supporting Trump…. (more)

January 22, 2016
NEWSMAX — Republicans were outraged Thursday after the Obama administration eased new visa requirements for certain European travelers who have visited Iran, Iraq, Syria, or Sudan in the last five years – – accusing President Barack Obama of appeasing Tehran and charging that the changes would undercut efforts to prevent terrorists from entering the United States…. (more)


January 22, 2016
BOB UNRUH — A lawyer representing Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County, Arizona, in his precedent-setting lawsuit against President Obama’s immigration executive actions is asking the Supreme Court to reconsider its decision not to hear his case while accepting a similar case brought by Texas and 25 other states…. (more)

January 22, 2016
WASHINGTON TIMES — The Obama administration has released one of al Qaeda’s most skilled explosives experts, a man personally praised by Osama bin Laden and who created the shoe-bomb design that was used unsuccessfully to bring down an airliner in 2001…. (more)


January 22, 2016
NEWSMAX — The radiation poisoning of former KGB agent Alexander Litvinenko in London in 2006 was “probably approved” by Russian President Vladimir Putin, a British judge said Thursday at the conclusion of a public inquiry into the spy’s agonizing death…. (more)

 Putin ‘probably’ ordered poisoning of rogue spy, British inquiry finds (Washington Times)


10 Scriptural reasons Jesus Calling is a dangerous book

Do you get flustrated trying to explain to your church friends why the book Jesus Calling is one we should be avoiding? My friend Warren B. Smith has just put together a new Lighthouse Trails Booklet Tract to help.  It’s a 16-page explanation that you can hand out at your women’s Bible study, or stuff […]

The post 10 Scriptural reasons Jesus Calling is a dangerous book appeared first on Berean Research.


Controversial Christian historian David Barton…misinterpretations…errors…and Glenn Beck

By Marsha West “If your family homeschools, or if you send your kids to a Christian school, or even if you are actively involved in Republican politics, listen to talk radio, and consider yourself a TEA party oriented person, the name David Barton has circled around your orbit at least a few times.” ~ Fred […]

The post Controversial Christian historian David Barton…misinterpretations…errors…and Glenn Beck appeared first on Berean Research.


Evangelical Intelligentsia leadership’s soft evangelicalism

JD Hall of Pulpit & Pen reminds us that Albert Mohler, president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, “is the alpha-dog of the Reformed theological world, one of the architects of the SBC’s Conservative Resurgence, and is generally speaking the smartest person in the room (literally). Mohler’s theology is impeccably sound, but decisions in recent years […]

The post Evangelical Intelligentsia leadership’s soft evangelicalism appeared first on Berean Research.


Follow Up: SBC President Ronnie Floyd, Featured Speaker at New Apostolic Reformation’s IHOP

Bible study author, speaker and blogger Michelle Lesley takes prominent Christian leader Ronnie Floyd to task for uniting with wolves in sheep’s clothing and then inviting the sheep that he’s supposed to keep watch over to join him in the wolf’s lair.  What kind of Church leader would do such a thing? Michelle has the […]

The post Follow Up: SBC President Ronnie Floyd, Featured Speaker at New Apostolic Reformation’s IHOP appeared first on Berean Research.


Part 2 Review: “7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess”

What if everything you and your family did to honor God had you counting to seven? Even to the point of employing Catholic mysticism into 7 sacred pauses? (You’re probably thinking, “huh?”) Last week in my post, Woman, just try harder!, we reviewed Part I of Elizabeth Prata’s excellent article on the book, “7: An […]

The post Part 2 Review: “7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess” appeared first on Berean Research.


4 concerns about Jen Hatmaker’s teachings

It’s no surprise to me that last week’s book review post, “7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess” by Jen Hatmaker, received a mixed response. Along with the many women who thanked me for posting the review, a number were also upset that I would dare to question anything about this popular speaker and teacher. Let […]

The post 4 concerns about Jen Hatmaker’s teachings appeared first on Berean Research.


Liberty University Welcomes Reality Show “Pastor” and Collaborator With “I Am a God” Rapper Kanye West

On January 18, Jerry Falwell, Jr., president of Liberty University (LU), rolled out what was called a “hero’s welcome” for GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump when he spoke at a mandatory convocation service.  LU’s motto is “Training Champions for Christ.”  Falwell received flak for giving what many felt was a personal endorsement of Trump. He told the […]

The post Liberty University Welcomes Reality Show “Pastor” and Collaborator With “I Am a God” Rapper Kanye West appeared first on Berean Research.


Evangelicals looking to the wrong savior

There’s a lot of evangelical hand-wringing of late, over which Christian candidate can bring our nation back into the greatness that it once was. “If we can only elect a true Christian,” is a sentiment often heard among those who see the nation sinking into darkness. The Washington Post reports in an article, Donald Trump […]

The post Evangelicals looking to the wrong savior appeared first on Berean Research.


Sozo – a dangerous “inner healing and deliverance ministry”

Before I get to Kim Olsen’s blog post, those who are unfamiliar with Sozo prayer need to know more about it.  First of all, Sozo prayer is the brain child of husband and wife team Bill (self-proclaimed modern-day apostle) and Beni  (New Age guru) Johnson, both of whom are pastors of the infamous Bethel Church in Redding […]

The post Sozo – a dangerous “inner healing and deliverance ministry” appeared first on Berean Research.


Sheep stumbling is a serious matter.

“Donald Trump doesn’t have to be a Christian in order to run for president or to speak at Liberty University. But Liberty University—as a Christian institution of higher learning—has a responsibility not to confuse people about what Christianity is. And today they fell short of that in a big way.” So says writer Denny Burke […]

The post Sheep stumbling is a serious matter. appeared first on Berean Research.


Here's How 770 Pastors Describe Their Struggle with Porn

Here’s How 770 Pastors Describe Their Struggle with Porn

Posted on January 26, 2016 by Christianity Today

More than half have wrestled with pornography, but less than 1 percent recommend revealing this to the congregation.

Read Full Article »


The Mahdi is Coming

Apocalyptic Muslims gear up for the global Islamic state.

Finally, the leaders of Iran and the Islamic State deeply believe that Allah and the Mahdi have appointed them to spread Islam across the world. They believe that anyone who is not following their religion is an apostate who is bringing “fesad” (or corruption on the earth). Subsequently, from their perspective, the killings of these “fossad” (or the “corruptors”) will bring Imam Mahdi to the world faster, grant them Allah’s blessings, and rid the world of impurity.

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Economic Activity Is Slowing Down Much Faster Than The Experts Anticipated

Locomotive - Public DomainWe have not seen global economic activity fall off this rapidly since the great recession of 2008.  Manufacturing activity is imploding all over the planet, global trade is slowing down at a pace that is extremely alarming, and the Baltic Dry Index just hit another brand new all-time record low.  If the “real economy” consists of people making, selling and shipping stuff, then it is in incredibly bad shape.  Here in the United States, the dismal economic numbers continue to stun all of the experts.  For example, on Monday we learned that the Texas general business activity index just hit a six year low(Read More….)


op-ed by Brannon S. Howse  I warned about the worldview of Ted Cruz and his family a few months ago in this article:http://www.worldviewweekend.com/news/article/exposing-worldview-ted-cruz-and-his-family As if his own worldview on its own were not troubling to me, I find his association with men like David Barton and Glenn Beck, among others, helps to further reveal the troubling worldview and discernment of Ted Cruz. Here are some articles on David Barton and Glenn Beck: David Barton and Glenn Beck’s Idea of Revival: http://www.worldviewweekend.com/news/article/why-david-barton-100-wrong-…
 


Living in the final days: Rouhani meets Pope Francis to position Tehran as a potential top player in efforts to resolve Middle East conflicts

Photo: PressTV-Iran

VATICAN CITY – Iran’s president paid a call on Pope Francis at the Vatican Tuesday during a European visit aimed at positioning Tehran as a potential top player in efforts to resolve Middle East conflicts, including Syria’s civil war.

President Hassan Rouhani’s motorcade of limousines crossed St. Peter’s Square for the late-morning, closed-door meeting Tuesday with the pontiff.

Rouhani asked Pope Francis to pray for him after private talks at the Vatican.

Rouhani told Francis after their 40-minute meeting Tuesday: “I ask you to pray for me.” The Iranian called the visit “a real pleasure.”


 

Islamic Germany – Only A Generation Away?

Germany’s Muslim population is set to nearly quadruple to an astonishing 20 million by 2020 – just four years from now.


 

Porn Addiction Is Ravaging Christians, Including Church Leadership

A new study on porn addiction revealed ninety-six percent of youth pastors and ninety percent of pastors have viewed an image of sexual intercourse online and over half of the pastors and youth pastors who participated in the study said they had either struggled with porn in the past or were currently struggling with it.


Article Image

The Fed’s Own Data Says This Happens Next: “The Market Is About to See Half Its Value Wiped

01-25-2016 • http://www.shtfplan.com

 And if history is any guide, then all hell is going to break loose in coming weeks and months. The last time they attempted similar machinations it resulted in a major collapse of global financial markets. But this time is different, right?

Read Full Story


The McAvany Intel Memo

China is sitting on trillions of dollars in reserves right now, a portion of which they’re rapidly diversifying OUT of US dollars. So it’s clearly beneficial to the Chinese government to sell dollars while they’re strong and buy gold while it’s cheap. And if they can push gold to become cheaper, it is to their advantage to do so. But for those who have been tracking Chinese gold purchases over the past five years, it is clear that their real total gold reserves are probably between 10,000 and 15,000 tons – well above the gold “claimed” to be held by the US government.

[ED. NOTE: This writer’s late friend and subscriber, industrialist Edward Durrell, was once told by Charles De Gaulle that he knew that most of the gold in Fort Knox had long since been sold off. This is why De Gaulle started redeeming French-held US dollars for gold before Richard Nixon closed the gold window on August 15, 1971 – converting the US dollar to a 100% fiat currency. Durrell spent the last 20 years of his life on a crusade to educate the American people that the US gold reserves were gone and helped this writer write articles on same.]

(Excerpt from McAlvany Intelligence Advisor, September 2015)


Daily Digest

January 26, 2016

THE FOUNDATION

“Nothing is more essential to the establishment of manners in a State than that all persons employed in places of power and trust must be men of unexceptionable characters.” —Samuel Adams, 1775

TOP RIGHT HOOKS

Who Is the True Heir to Obama?

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Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton continued to draw differences with each other Monday night at a forum in Des Moines — a last attempt to sway voters in Iowa days before the caucuses. Sanders said in order to make this nation a social democracy that wages war against the rich, he wants to bring back “the era of big government,” and cause government spending to increase about 10 times the amount the government planned to spend on ObamaCare. Meanwhile, Clinton painted herself as a “proven fighter” (though she would be more honest to describe herself as a morally ambiguous anti-hero) who will, somehow, do what Barack Obama didn’t and work with Republicans. A fighter who wants to bury the hatchet. Ironic.

As for Obama, it’s pretty clear his choice for an heir is his former secretary of state. “[The] one thing everybody understands is that this job right here — you don’t have the luxury of just focusing on one thing,” he told Politico in an interview about the Democrat primaries. But Obama’s pick is a pragmatic one. Clinton will preserve what Obama created. Sanders wants what Obama originally envisioned. Commentator Charles Krauthammer said, “Sanders is the one who wants to achieve the ultimate dreams of Obama over the ones he couldn’t. He was the one who openly said he would prefer a single-payer system like the Canadian system, he obviously wasn’t able to achieve it. Sanders is the one you would expect to be his ideological heir.” And thus, Democrats continue their slow, incremental push toward ever more socialism.

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Clash of Billionaires: Donald vs. Michael

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Hey ho! Welcome to the 2016 elections, where everything is a clamorous tumult and past conventions don’t matter. For at least 100 years, third-party runs for the White House ended up splitting votes so the candidate with the minority views gained power. But former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is testing the water for a third-party run. And it’s not the craziest thing to say that the man who launched a regulatory crusade against salt and big soda cups while mayor of the Big Apple just might do well. “Mr. Bloomberg is a serious man who wouldn’t waste his money or time if he didn’t sense an opportunity,” wrote The Wall Street Journal’s editorial board. “If we’ve learned anything so far in this tumultuous election season, it’s that the electorate is volatile enough that anything can happen.”

Bloomberg is a lifelong liberal Democrat who claimed “Republican” status for his first NYC mayoral run, but is now back in his Demo comfort zone. (Shades of Donald Trump…) He is most loathed by conservatives for his persistent assault on the Second Amendment via his Everytown for Gun Safety organization. He also is an abortion and homosexual marriage advocate, along with a long slate of other leftist social agendas, and, as you recall, was the most outspoken supporter of the “ground zero mosque.” Bloomberg is flush with potential campaigning cash, as he has about nine times the wealth of Trump and has strong Wall Street connections. “He’d be able to tap into the anti-establishment fervor roiling both parties,” blogger Ed Morrissey wrote, “and add in his extensive executive experience in both the private and public sectors, something which none of the current top contenders offer at the moment.” The prospects of Clinton, Sanders, Trump and Bloomberg candidacies all pose a perilous threat to Liberty.

Trump has described Bloomberg as “a friend of mine over the years,” saying Bloomberg “called me to help him out.” Last fall, Bloomberg joked, “I’ve always said that the country is not ready for a divorced, Jewish billionaire from New York City. But after watching a divorced, Christian billionaire from New York City shoot to the top of the polls … I’ve decided to become a candidate.” Maybe he wasn’t joking. For the record, if Bloomberg runs and none of the candidates secure an outright electoral college victory, then the election would be decided by the Republican majority in the House.

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With Budget Problems Looming, Fewer Americans Care

The Congressional Budget Office released a report on the future of the federal government’s budget and the projections aren’t good. In 10 years, the federal government could hold a $30 trillion pile of debt, the Washington Times reports. That means any meager gains in fiscal responsibility made under the Republican Congress tugging on the purse strings to reduce the deficit will vanish. During the Obama administration, the amount of money the government spent while exceeding its budget declined, though it helps that he quadrupled the deficit before lowering it. In the 2015 fiscal year, we had a deficit of “only” $439 billion. But in the 2016 fiscal year, that number is supposed to climb to $544 billion, and the CBO sees more fiscal irresponsibility in the future. The solution includes searching for candidates with the fiscal chops to tackle the problem. However: “Voters care more about the economy and terrorism, and there’s good sense to that,” The Wall Street Journal editorial board opined. “The deficit will never vanish without faster economic growth, and the various tax reform plans that Republicans are offering would spur growth. By all means let’s debate growth.” But that might not be enough. For a dramatic shift in deficit reduction, the nation needs to take a difficult look at programs like Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, the programs contributing most to the national debt, according to The Heritage Foundation’s Romina Boccia. Tax hikes and budget cuts are only temporary fixes; what this nation needs is reform.

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FEATURED RIGHT ANALYSIS

Hillary’s Continuing Saga of Malfeasance

By Paul Albaugh

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Anyone who works in the intelligence community, defense industry or any other capacity that requires a secret clearance or higher knows that there is information that must be safeguarded at all costs. A breach of security, mishandling of classified information and failure to follow policies results in termination, fines and/or imprisonment. For the average worker, these penalties are enforced rather quickly. Yet in the case of Hillary Clinton, this is not the case — at least not yet.

The FBI’s investigation into Hillary’s malfeasance has most recently revealed that her private server contained not just classified material, but also information that an intelligence agency has identified as being extremely sensitive and “HCS-O.” According to two sources who were not authorized to speak on the record, this is the code used for reporting on human intelligence sources in ongoing operations.

This new evidence, along with the Special Access Programs (SAP) that were identified by the FBI last week, is very damaging for our national security. Dan Maguire, former Special Operations strategic planner for Africom, states, “There are people’s lives at stake. Certainly in an intel SAP, if you’re talking about sources and methods, there may be one person in the world that would have access to the type of information contained in that SAP.”

Despite the mounting evidence against her, Clinton continues to lie about her deliberate (more on this in a minute) mishandling of classified information. In fact, during a recent interview on “Meet the Press,” she insisted again, “I never sent or received any material marked ‘classified.’ I cannot control what the Republicans leak and what they are contending.” So it’s the Republicans’ fault (vast right-wing conspiracy, anyone?), it’s all made up and they are only doing it to derail her campaign for the presidency.

In the Democrats’ town hall Monday night, she repeated her claim of innocence: “[N]othing I did was wrong. It was not in any way prohibited.”

Both of her claims are outright lies.

She aims to deflect the attention off of herself and onto an entire political party. But the party at fault is her and most likely several staffers who worked for her at the State Department.

Col. Kurt Schlichter (USA, retired) explains how Clinton had classified material sent to her server. Classified information is stored on machines that are not connected to unclassified machines. Further these classified machines are stored in a secure facility often referred to as a SCIF, the doors are always locked and only personnel with authorized clearances can even access the secured room. No one can bring in any electronic devices to include cell phones, laptops, thumb drives or anything that could potentially store information. These rules are in place to prevent spillage — classified material leaving the secure facility.

So the fact that the FBI has discovered classified material, SAP, and now human intelligence on Clinton’s homebrew server indicates that either she or someone on her staff deliberately removed extremely sensitive material, which violated numerous security protocols. Despite her protests of innocence, she knew about it all along, the implications for our national security be damned.

With all of these security measures put in place, how did she or her minions get the classified material out of the secure facility and onto the unsecured server? Schlichter speculates that it is very possible someone printed off classified documents, scanned them onto an unsecured operating system and removed the heading “classified” from the newly created PDF file.

The text of a classified document is what matters, of course, not just the heading. As Schlichter put it, “[C]lassified material does not somehow become unclassified simply because it is no longer marked due to minions cutting and pasting the text out from between the classification markings.”

But therein lies the key to parsing Clinton’s lie: She didn’t have information marked classified. What a Clintonesque description.

Raymond Fournier, a veteran Diplomatic Security Service special agent, states, “It takes a very conscious effort to move a classified email or cable from the classified systems over to the unsecured open system and then send it to Hillary Clinton’s personal email account. … That’s no less than a two-conscious-step process.”

Former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy adds, “[A]ll indications are that Mrs. Clinton was not grossly negligent. This was a thought-out, quite intentional violation of law. It now looks as if her scheme involved erasing the markings from some documents because she (a) knew what she was doing was a serious violation of law, (b) anticipated the possibility of being called on it, and (c) hoped to set up a fraudulent defense that she lacked knowledge that the documents were classified. That would be willful criminality, not just criminal recklessness.”

It’s worth repeating that any regular government employee caught doing anything remotely similar to this would be fired. General David Petraeus, as we’ve noted, committed less serious crimes mishandling classified material and yet Defense Secretary Ash Carter is pursuing additional punishment for his actions.

What then, is taking so long for charges to be brought against Hillary?

The simple answer is Barack Obama’s Justice Department, run by his patsy, Loretta Lynch. The FBI is doing its part by investigating and digging through all of Clinton’s illegal activity. But as McCarthy also writes, “The FBI routinely conducts major investigations in collaboration with Justice Department prosecutors — usually from the U.S. attorney’s office in the district where potential crimes occurred. That is because the FBI needs the assistance of a grand jury. The FBI does not have authority even to issue subpoenas, let alone to charge someone with a crime. Only federal prosecutors may issue subpoenas, on the lawful authority of the grand jury. Only prosecutors are empowered to present evidence or propose charges to the grand jury. And the Constitution vests only the grand jury with authority to indict — the formal accusation of a crime. In our system, the FBI can do none of these things. No Justice Department, no grand jury. No grand jury, no case — period.”

And so we wait. Why? Because we have a president with less than a year in office who we’re guessing doesn’t want his former secretary of state charged with a crime, thus further tarnishing his failed presidency. Besides, if she’s taken down before the election, Democrats are left with Bernie Sanders. But it also leaves the possibility of Joe Biden or Elizabeth Warren to save the day at the convention. So stay tuned; things are just getting interesting.

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MORE ORIGINAL PERSPECTIVE

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

For more, visit Right Opinion.

TOP HEADLINES

For more, visit Patriot Headline Report

OPINION IN BRIEF

Dennis Prager: “There is no way to do good in this world without risking making enemies. That National Review was prepared to do that — among its own readers, no less — in this day of great financial challenges to newspapers, magazines, and news and opinion websites, was an act of courage. In opposing Donald Trump for president — which, it happens, I did in a column I wrote four years ago — I face the same issue among some in my radio audience. I receive emails from listeners who say they can longer listen my show because of my opposition to Trump (though I do regularly distinguish between Trump and his supporters). … If a person in our lives — a spouse, a friend, a family member — does something that angers or disappoints us, and we don’t take the person’s whole moral bank account into consideration, we will lose every important relationship in our lives. I have explained this to listeners on a number of occasions during my more than 30 years as a radio talk show host. The vast majority simply understand that at some point on some issue, I will disappoint them and they therefore continue to both respect me and to listen to the show. But others don’t. … In their view, National Review, that magnificent defender of conservative values for all of their lives, made a withdrawal. But so what? Should that deplete National Review’s moral bank account with them? In fact, conservatives who support Trump should do something else — ask themselves why nearly every conservative they have admired for so long is opposed to Trump.”

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SHORT CUTS

Upright: “Those who worship Trump have an obligation to say why he is worthy of their faith. Given his liberal background and poor explanations of why he now believes differently, how do his supporters know he will govern conservatively should he win the White House? He once said his sister, who is pro-abortion, would be an excellent nominee to the Supreme Court. His story of how he supposedly became a pro-life convert lacks credibility. Electing a president, especially in a dangerous world, is important work. Anger and emotion should not govern the choice.” —Cal Thomas

For the record: “I think Trump’s a fake conservative because he spent most of his life as a progressive Democrat.” —Rand Paul

Good question: “I’m watching all of this talk about banning the Oscars. And all these Hollywood liberals and Hollywood actors and actresses are running around saying, ‘We can’t go to the Oscars, there aren’t any black nominees. It’s a racist bunch, it’s racism, and we’re not gonna go support it.’ If that’s the case, then why aren’t all good liberals boycotting the Democrat presidential primaries?” —Rush Limbaugh

Demo-gogues: “No, I wouldn’t [run for a third term]. … Although I think I am as good of a president as I’ve ever been right now, I also think that there comes a point where you don’t have fresh legs, and that’s when you start making mistakes or that’s when you start thinking that you are what’s important as opposed to the mission being more important.” —Barack Obama

Braying Jenny: “You know, look, I’ve been around a long time. People have thrown all kinds of things at me. And you know, I can’t keep up with it. I just keep going forward. They fall by the wayside. They come up with these outlandish things. They make these charges. I just keep going forward because there’s nothing to it. They throw all this stuff at me, and I’m still standing. … [Y]ou have to say to yourself, why are they throwing all of that? Well, I’ll tell you why. Because I’ve been on the front lines of change and progress.” —Hillary Clinton

Late-night humor: “Samsung has a new washing machine that can connect to your smartphone and send you updates about your laundry. They say it’s perfect for people who are either extremely busy or have nothing else going on.” —Jimmy Fallon

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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.

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The Daily Discovery (January 26, 2016)

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

The Danger of Theological Pride – “As a new Christian in college, I was an impressionable young woman. Studying the Bible was novel to me and I depended on the guidance and mentorship of some ‘older’ women to help me figure out how I was to live the Christian life. I was eager to understand God’s word, and was full of questions for Christian friends and leaders in my campus ministry.”

How Married People Can Combat the Singleness Epidemic – “Much has been said about the fact that singles are waiting longer and longer to get married. There’s been a lot of speculation on why this is the case. Some say men are prolonging their adolescence in life, causing them to lack a desire to grow up and take on the responsibility of family. Others think it’s due to the fact women have more career opportunities, so their need for someone to provide for them is no longer there. Still others attribute it to the greater acceptance in our culture of co-habitation, which grants benefits without total commitment. Whatever the belief may be, many think they have solutions to the problem. Men need to grow up. Women need to quit being so feminist. Young adults need to abstain from sexual intimacy outside of marriage. Now, I definitely think there is some truth to all of the above. However, it seems to me, much of the debate revolves around singles, our issues, and our need to resolve them.”

Three Pastoral Reminders From Three Dead Guys – “As a young pastor, I find myself in constant need of wisdom. So what a joy it was to slowly work my way through three volumes in Crossway’s excellent Theologians On the Christian Life series. I found these books to be brimming with sage pastoral counsel and searching application. Jonathan Edwards helped reorient my thinking about beauty. John Newton recalibrated my heart by calling me to look, and look again, at an all-sufficient Christ. And Herman Bavinck reminded me of the power of speaking courageously for Christ in this world with meekness. So instead of a typical book review, what follows are three brief pastoral reminders that I gleaned from spending time with a Congregationalist, an Anglican, and a Dutch Reformed scholar. Though dead, they still speak.”

iPhones, Androids, and Your Church – “There’s no denying that the world has gone ‘mobile.’ In the last few years, life has changed dramatically thanks to the little rectangles most of us rely on and rarely separate from. For the church, technology sometimes almost feels a little out of place. For those of us grounded in wanting to preach the same message, the same Gospel that has stood for thousands of years without need of our modification, it can be easy to set aside technological opportunities along with the latest fad in theology. But that need not be the case. We live in a time where God has given us exciting tools to use for His glory, and they are becoming commonplace among excellent churches.”

3 Ways to Share the Gospel This Week – “‘Preach the gospel at all times and, if necessary, use words.’ This classic quote, misattributed to Saint Francis of Assisi, is both clever and catchy. It just isn’t biblical. Evangelism—communicating the good news of King Jesus—always requires words. Christians are called to adorn the gospel with actions (Titus 2:10), to be sure, but our actions are not the gospel. No amount of righteous living can replace the necessity of verbally proclaiming God’s saving achievement in Christ. But even though all evangelism involves sharing the same message, not all evangelism occurs in the same manner. Here are three kinds we see modeled in the New Testament.”


SERMON:

Voddie Baucham – Church Growth


VIDEOS:

St. Patrick’s Bad Analogies

“I don’t want God telling me what to do.”


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


David Barton prays an anointing on Glenn Beck

From Berean Research:

Glenn BeckOne must wonder why Christian historian David Barton and Mormon Glenn Beck have been spending so much time together. And when they pray, what are they praying for? Is it Beck’s repentance and salvation in Jesus Christ of the Bible?

Well, not exactly.

As a follow up to Marsha’s must-read article, Controversial Christian historian David Barton…misinterpretations…errors…and Glenn Beck, Warren Throckmorton emailed us to share this interesting video and article. Notice what Barton is praying, and how afterward Beck is deeply affected.

Read more


Grand jury indicts pro-life investigator behind baby part videos, clears Planned Parenthood

Lifesite News reports:

The lead investigator behind the undercover Planned Parenthood videos faces up to 20 years in prison after a Houston grand jury decided on Monday not to charge Planned Parenthood with any wrongdoing – and instead indicted him for offering to purchase human organs from the abortion provider.

Center for Medical Progress lead investigator David Daleiden faces a second-degree felony charge of “tampering with a governmental record,” and a misdemeanor charge for violating the state’s “prohibition of the purchase and sale of human organs.”

That is, jurors in the state of Texas are accusing David Daleiden of trying to illegally traffic in aborted babies’ body parts.

Read more


Jonathan Cahn Partners With Arch Heretic Kenneth Copeland

From the Museum of Idolatry:

Jonathan Cahn’s transition to the dark side is now complete. He has now taken his eschatologically indefensible prognostications to the Dark Lord of the Heretical Sith, Ken Copeland.

“I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive.”
— Romans 16:17–18

Need we say more?

Now watch the video


Fox Network Promoting Satanism With #LuciferIsHere Social Media Campaign

The Fox Facebook page boasts ‘Lucifer’s waiting for you. Tune into Fox right now!’

“How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!” Isaiah 14:12 (KJV)

Honestly, it’s crazy. Absolutely insane. Everywhere you look on social media, Fox is blowing the trumpet inviting you to welcome Lucifer into your homes. You can even live Tweet ‘questions for Lucifer’ when the show is running on Monday nights. The comments people are leaving on the Lucifer Facebook page are quite revealing:

  • Christy Smith Please don’t cancel. Because of religious crazy nuts. Love it. Lucifer new favorite show. Just waiting for the out cry.
  • Twayna Powell Love this show and how they put a face to Lucifer…. And the ascent was a killer….. And good eye candy…
  • Alex Vogelgesang Oh, and Lucifer has great taste in music
  • Janet De Vries Ergang The show was very good and quite amusing! I will watch it again next Monday.
  • Gina Brochu Oh man, the people who are offended by this show (Yes, Folks, it’s just moving pictures) or see Armageddon pointing its ugly face, should go to church and leave us alone 
  • Dayna Webb It was a funny show. If these religious nut jobs actually watched the show, they’d see that he is very respectful of God and refers to him as Father.
  • Michelle La Rue Buckingham LOVE IT!!! My husband and I never agree on t.v. shows, but we both loved this one!!

Fox’s new show is the very essence of Satanism in America. Make the Devil look good, give him a little bit of conscience for wider appeal, use the name Lucifer instead of Satan because we all know that “Lucifer” is when he was still a “good guy”. But that’s wrong. Lucifer was the bad guy by his own choice, a traitor like Judas was. Judas was with Jesus three and a half years but never a good guy, and neither was Lucifer.

You can see by the comments above that Fox has absolutely found it’s audience. They are counting on God-hating, anti-Bible atheists to push this show to the top. And there are no shortage of those people in America.

The Devil comes for one reason, and one reason only: “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” John 10:10 (KJV)

30 seconds after the Rapture, you will find the Fox Network 100% up and functioning, with hardly an employee missing.

The Devil takes care of his own.


A La Carte (January 26)

Today’s Kindle deals include Preaching the Whole Counsel of God by Julius Kim ($5.99); Everyday Grace by Jessica Thompson ($1.99); PROOF by Daniel Montgomery & Timothy Paul Jones ($3.99); Your New Money Mindset by Brad Hewitt & James Moline ($2.99); A Place for Weakness ($3.99) and Introducing Covenant Theology ($2.99) by Michael Horton; Reclaiming Love by Ajith Fernando ($3.99). Also, Amazon has a one-day sale on books for students.

Sex Abuse in the Church

Catherine Parks writes about the ugly reality of sexual abuse in the church. “In recent months, I have thought frequently about abuse allegations in the church. I have read story after story about abuse victims who went to church leaders and either were not believed or were blamed in part for what happened.”

Grand Jury Indicts Filmmakers

Joe Carter does one of his FAQs about yesterday’s outrageous news: “A grand jury in Harris County, Texas (the county where Houston is located) has indicted two of the undercover videographers associated with the Center for Medical Progress.”

7 Ways to Fight Distraction During Prayer

“Distraction can be a huge hindrance in our prayer life, but I am also discovering that it provides an opportunity for growth. Here are seven strategies for fighting distraction, and harnessing it to deepen and direct our prayers.”

48 Scattered Thoughts about Pastoral Ministry and Being a Pastor

This is great stuff. I especially appreciate #21!

Prayer Societies

This article contains some interesting ideas for prayer. And this is definitely true: “Every Christian knows he should pray. Simply urging the church to pray more usually results in condemnation about our prayer life rather than consecration in this holy duty.”

This Day in 1987. 29 years ago today, John Piper received the first copy of his book, Desiring God. *

How Should We Then Defend?

I’m linking to this article primarily because of the joy of reading this paragraph: “In 2015 in the United States, the process for picking a new president began in earnest. Not only is the process obnoxiously overblown, it provides a never-ending selection of sulfurous soundbites to a salaciously saccharine and spongy constituency. Rallies for would-be presidents show throngs cheering for one whose lies have been exposed and who is under investigation by the FBI, and for yet another whose brainless bigotry, bombast and buffoonery know no limits. And these are only the (as I write) “popular” candidates.”

In Praise of the Lowly McMuffin

Let’s face it: McDonald’s breakfast is a remarkable feat of food engineering. (Related: How on earth do you get a whole industry to transition to cage-free eggs?)

Why Monorails Aren’t the Future

Basically, because they’re awful at what they do.

Ryle

Unity without the gospel is a worthless unity, it is the very unity of hell. —J.C. Ryle


If We Are Faithless, He Remains Faithful?

“If we are faithless, he remains faithful.” In this lab, John Piper asks whether this popular phrase was written to be a comfort or a warning.

Watch Now


How the Fine-Tuning of the Universe Points to the Existence of God (Video)

J. Warner Wallace, author of God’s Crime Scene, discusses the nature of the universe and the evidence for God’s existence. The universe appears to be uniquely fine-tuned for the existence of life. From the incredible calibration of the universal constants, to the nature of the galaxies, to the unique attributes of our planet, the universe had to be “just so” in order for life to emerge on earth. Why is this the case? Does the appearance of fine-tuning most reasonably indicate the existence of a Fine-Tuner? Can fine-tuning be explained from “inside the room” of the natural universe, or does the best explanation for the design of the universe lie “outside the room”? For more information about this “inside” or “outside the room” approach to the evidence in the universe, refer to J. Warner’s book, God’s Crime Scene.

To see more Cold Case Christianity Training Videos with J. Warner Wallace, visit the YouTube playlist.



Top Headlines

 The Hands and Feet of Christ in Burkina Faso: Slain Missionary Gave His Life to Service
 The Revenant Leaves Us Feeling Cold
 Welby: Anglicans Disciplined Episcopal Church over Process, Not Theology
 Iranian-Backed Shiite Militias Behind Abduction of Americans in Baghdad
 Naghmeh Abedini Asks for Prayer as Family Undergoes Counseling
 Franklin Graham: ‘I’m Surprised and Disappointed’ Wheaton Faculty Supports Hijab-Wearing Professor
 Pro-Life Laws in 2016 Will Focus on Unborn Child’s Suffering
 At Least One American Remains in Iranian Prison
 Supreme Court Takes Landmark Church-State Case
 Charleston Church Where Fatal Shooting Took Place Ordains New Pastor

Opinion

 Finding the Pool of Siloam: Another Testament to the Bible’s Accuracy
 The Show ‘Lucifer’ Makes the Devil ‘Charming’
 What You Need to Know about Prosperity Gospel Pastors
 10 Films We’re Looking Forward to in 2016
 Critiquing Culture for Christ and Our Neighbor

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.


What Is the Gospel?

There is no greater message to be heard than that which we call the gospel. But as important as that is, it is often given to massive distortions or over simplifications. People think they’re preaching the gospel to you when they tell you, ‘you can have a purpose to your life’, or that ‘you can have meaning to your life’, or that ‘you can have a personal relationship with Jesus.’ All of those things are true, and they’re all important, but they don’t get to the heart of the gospel.

The gospel is called the ‘good news’ because it addresses the most serious problem that you and I have as human beings, and that problem is simply this: God is holy and He is just, and I’m not. And at the end of my life, I’m going to stand before a just and holy God, and I’ll be judged. And I’ll be judged either on the basis of my own righteousness–or lack of it –or the righteousness of another. The good news of the gospel is that Jesus lived a life of perfect righteousness, of perfect obedience to God, not for His own well being but for His people. He has done for me what I couldn’t possibly do for myself. But not only has He lived that life of perfect obedience, He offered Himself as a perfect sacrifice to satisfy the justice and the righteousness of God.

The great misconception in our day is this: that God isn’t concerned to protect His own integrity. He’s a kind of wishy-washy deity, who just waves a wand of forgiveness over everybody. No. For God to forgive you is a very costly matter. It cost the sacrifice of His own Son. So valuable was that sacrifice that God pronounced it valuable by raising Him from the dead – so that Christ died for us, He was raised for our justification. So the gospel is something objective. It is the message of who Jesus is and what He did. And it also has a subjective dimension. How are the benefits of Jesus subjectively appropriated to us? How do I get it? The Bible makes it clear that we are justified not by our works, not by our efforts, not by our deeds, but by faith–and by faith alone. The only way you can receive the benefit of Christ’s life and death is by putting your trust in Him–and in Him alone. You do that, you’re declared just by God, you’re adopted into His family, you’re forgiven of all of your sins, and you have begun your pilgrimage for eternity.


The Gospel on 5 Fingers

If you picked up a hitchhiker (not that I recommend doing that) and he saw a Bible on your car seat and said, “I’ve heard about this thing called the Gospel – can you explain it to me before you drop me off in one minute up the street?” What would you say?

Can you explain the gospel in 30 seconds? In one minute? In five minutes?

Here’s one way I have found helpful. The five main components of the gospel can be remembered on 5 fingers of one hand. Here they are:

1) Jesus’ birth
2) Jesus’ life
3) Jesus’ death
4) Jesus’ resurrection
5) Jesus’ ascension

Obviously each point can be elaborated on depending on how much time you have. Here’s the short version:

1) Jesus’ birth – Jesus, God himself, the creator of the universe, the Messiah, became a human being – took on flesh, and was born of a virgin.

2) Jesus’ life – Jesus lived a life of perfect obedience to his Father. Though he was tempted in every way as we are, he never once sinned.

3) Jesus’ death – on the cross, Jesus himself took all our sins and paid for them. God the father counted all our sins to Jesus as if he himself had personally committed them. Then Jesus bore God’s wrath towards sin – the punishment we deserved – as a substitute for us.

4) Jesus’ resurrection – within 3 days, Jesus rose physically from the dead, proving that his sacrifice for sins have been accepted by God, since the punishment for sin was death. Jesus was seen by numerous people after he rose including 500 at one time (1 Corinthians 15).

5) Jesus’ ascension – Jesus ascended physically into heaven where he reigns as King of kings and Lord of lords. And someday he will return to the earth.

That’s the gospel, the good news, and if we believe in Jesus Christ and this good news and call upon him he will save us from our sins and give us eternal life.

That’s a simple way to remember the gospel – five fingers. Even a child can do it. So ask God to give you opportunities to share his good news today.


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


Truth2Freedom Blog Disclaimer

This post was originally posted on:

https://truth4freedom.wordpress.com

(Alternative News, Apologetics, Current Events, Commentary, Opinion, Theology, Discernment Blog, Devotionals, Christian Internet Evangelism & Missions Activist).

“A simple layman armed with Scripture is to be believed above a pope or a council without it…” – Martin Luther

“In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.”

— Augustine

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In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107,material here is distributed without profit for research and educational purposes.

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William Lane Craig lectures on naturalism at the University of St. Andrews

WINTERY KNIGHT

Lets take a closer look at a puzzle Lets take a closer look at a puzzle

Note: even if you have heard Dr. Craig’s arguments before, I recommend jumping to the 48 minutes of Q&A time, which starts 72 minutes in.

About Dr. William Lane Craig:

William Lane Craig (born August 23, 1949) is an American analytic philosopher, philosophical theologian, and Christian apologist. He is known for his work on the philosophy of time and the philosophy of religion, specifically the existence of God and the defense of Christian theism. He has authored or edited over 30 books including The Kalam Cosmological Argument (1979), Theism, Atheism and Big Bang Cosmology(co-authored with Quentin Smith, 1993), Time and Eternity: Exploring God’s Relationship to Time (2001), and Einstein, Relativity and Absolute Simultaneity (co-edited with Quentin Smith, 2007).

Craig received a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications from Wheaton College, Illinois, in 1971 and two summa cum laudemaster’s degrees from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois, in 1975, in philosophy of religion and ecclesiastical history. He earned a Ph.D. in philosophy under John Hick at the University of…

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The Beauty of ARF

Unfathomable Grace

ARF is something found in every legitimate relationship. Without ARF, the friendship experienced is either superficial or pretended, or it is bound for termination.

ARF is also a most prominent practice in every vibrant marriage. When ARF is missing, distant apathy or damaging abuse results.

Yes, ARF is vitality important in all relationships. This is true whether one is talking about best friends, husbands and wives, parents and children, siblings, or church members. This is also important to the experiential relationship between the sinful worshiper and their faithful Christ.

So, what is this ARF of which I speak? It is Acknowledgement, Repentance, and Forgiveness, and it is succinctly presented in Matthew 18.

Acknowledgment

First, there is acknowledgment. Preferably, the one who sins should go and acknowledge his transgression against his neighbor or against his Christ. This is always wonderful when someone is tender and concerned over their own sins. However…

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Does the Bible Teach That the Charismatic Gifts Are For Today?

Reformedontheweb's Blog

Above is a debate between Dr. Sam Waldron, Dean and Resident Professor of Systematic Theology at Covenant Baptist Theological Seminary, and Matt Slick, President and Founder of the Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry. They debate the question, “Does the Bible teach that the charismatic gifts are for today?”

No matter which side of the issue you may be on, I highly recommend watching this debate, which is very instructive and helpful in seeking to understand the important issues involved. I think it may be the best debate I have seen on the issue, especially since it is between two men who share a commitment to Reformed theology.

Source [Reformed Baptist Blog]

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