Daily Archives: December 9, 2016

December 9, 2016 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report (US•World•Christian)

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Dec. 9, 2016 |

BLOOMBERG

John Glenn, who was celebrated as a national hero after becoming the first U.S. astronaut to orbit Earth and went on to serve 24 years in the Senate and seek the presidency, has died. He was 95.

President Obama, whose administration failed to break the impasse between Israel and the Palestinians during eight years in office, is coming under pressure to act one last time as events in Israel and at the UN clash.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce told a closed-door gathering of Mexican and American corporate and government leaders that it is aiming to keep Donald Trump from fulfilling his campaign threat to tear up the North American Free Trade Agreement, according to three people with direct knowledge of the matter.

Senate Democrats were trying to decide Thursday whether to risk a short-term partial shutdown of the U.S. government this weekend unless Republicans agree to demands to protect the health benefits of retired miners. “There is no consensus yet, we are still working out the strategy,” said Connecticut Senator Christopher Murphy.

OPEC is likely to bring the oil market into balance by the middle of next year, but its production cut looks set to fall short of its stated goal of draining the stockpiles that are depressing prices.

Undone by an influence-peddling scandal, South Korea’s President Park Geun-hye was impeached by parliament on Friday amid a wave of anger that could overturn the nation’s politics and increase pressure on some of Asia’s biggest companies to reform.

AP Top Stories

In contemporary European politics, there can only be one true xenophobic politician. Today, Marine Le Pen reminded us that she alone wears that crown. On Thursday, Le Pen, leader of France’s far-right National Front, announced that she would end free education for the children of undocumented immigrants. In a speech in Paris on Thursday, she said, “If you come to our country don’t expect to be taken care of, to be looked after, that your children will be educated without charge,” adding, “Playtime is over.”

Environmental advocates say they are shocked and worried after Donald Trump announced Thursday that he had selected Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, who has denied mainstream climate science, to administer his Environmental Protection Agency.

An air strike in Iraq has killed dozens of civilians in an area near the Syrian border still controlled by the Islamic State group, officials said.

At least 50,000 Islamic State jihadists have been killed by the US-led coalition since it began operations in Iraq and Syria in late 2014, a senior US military official said Thursday. A relentless operation using planes and drones from a dozen or so members of the anti-IS coalition since August 2014 has conducted some 16,000 air strikes against the jihadists in Iraq and Syria — two-thirds of them in Iraq.

Sears reported mounting losses on Thursday and acknowledged that the company has “fallen short” of expectations for a recovery. The company said revenue fell 12.5% to $5 billion in the third quarter, with losses widening to $748 million from $454 million in the period last year.

BBC

At least 30 people have killed in a suicide bomb attack in the north-eastern Nigerian town of Madagali, the army said. Two female suicide bombers detonated their explosives in a busy market.

Hundreds of men appear to have gone missing after crossing from rebel-held areas of Aleppo into government territory, UN officials said. Forces led by Syria’s government have seized at least 75% of eastern parts of the city from rebels in recent weeks.

Donald Trump has chosen an anti-regulation fast-food executive, opposed to a higher minimum wage, to lead the US Department of Labor.

Forms of sexual harassment in public in the Argentine capital could now land perpetrators with a $60 fine. Cat-calling and other types of harassment are seen as normal by some in Buenos Aires, but the city council voted on Wednesday to draw a line.

Australia has given approval for the sale of the country’s largest private landholding, the Kidman estate. It will go to Australia’s richest woman, Gina Rinehart, and her business partner, Chinese developer Shanghai CRED.

Muslim audiences should have better alternatives to mainstream cartoons, an Islamic leader in Australia has said. Sheik Shady Alsuleiman, the head of the Australian National Imams Council (ANIC), suggested parents donate to TV cartoons that support Islamic values.

China’s President Xi Jinping has called for the country’s universities to become ideological “strongholds” of the Communist Party, the latest move in a crackdown on academic freedom. The universities must “serve the rule of the Chinese Communist Party” and “promote socialism”.

WND

Three windmill-like turbines loom motionless over the city of Port Angeles’ new Waterfront Park. The $107,516 spires stand immobile more than two months after they were erected and more than a year after the city council approved them. Once they are working to generate electricity, they will produce so little power – $1.50 worth of electricity a month in savings – that at least one council member is regretting her decision to purchase them.

Terrified parents whose children attend Barron Trump’s pricey New York City prep school packed a contentious meeting to confront the Secret Service with their safety concerns.

North Korea is now capable of attaching nuclear warheads to missiles but has not mastered hitting a target, a senior US defense official has said.

Up to 1,750 ISIS jihadists have returned to Europe with orders to carry out attacks, an EU report has warned. About 5,000 European fanatics have travelled to Syria and Iraq with between 15 to 20 per cent dying on the battlefield. Up to 35 percent have returned – some with ‘specific missions’ – and 50 percent remain in the battle theatre, which amounted to between 2,000 and 2,500 Europeans.


The Briefing 12-09-16

The real consequences of fake news: Why evangelicals should be concerned with the truth

Blurring the line between opinion and news: Do reporters acknowledge complicity in fake news problem?

Shrugging at the truth: How postmodernism paved the way for fake news

“The last true national hero”: John Glenn, first American to orbit the Earth, dies at age 95

The post The Briefing 12-09-16 appeared first on AlbertMohler.com.


Franklin Graham Slams Time Magazine For Comparison Of Hillary Clinton To Moses

Christian evangelist Franklin Graham has condemned Time magazine for comparing Hillary Clinton to Moses.

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This is just too damn rich: Brian Williams, that’s right BRIAN “Mr. I was suspended for lying to the American people repeatedly” WILLIAMS, frets about “fake news

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I’ve been watching the “fake news” nonsense very closely. It seems to be a mix of partisans looking for a reason, any reason, why so many people just rejected Hillary and by extension Obama when in their opinion Clinton was clearly the superior choice, (Remember the whole email private server thing, and the Clinton Foundation money, and the quarter million dollar “speeches” to the bailout banks, and the get out of jail pass from Comey, and the rigged primaries,

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Enormous Earthquakes Hit Both Sides Of The Pacific And Experts Warn The San Andreas Could ‘Unzip All At Once’

latest-earthquakes-ring-of-fire-usgs-mapWhy is our planet shaking so violently all of a sudden? There have literally been dozens of significant earthquakes right along the Ring of Fire within the past 30 days, and two giant ones made headlines all over the globe on Thursday. First, a magnitude 6.5 earthquake struck off the coast of Humboldt County, California, and that was followed later in the day by a magnitude 7.8 earthquake in the Solomon Islands. But of course these latest earthquakes are just the latest examples of increased shaking along the outer perimeter of the Pacific Ocean. Experts are not quite sure what to make of all of this shaking, but they are warning that “the Big One” could strike the west coast at literally any time. (Read More…)


Are We Being Set Up For A Crash? Stocks Hit A Level Only Seen During The Bubbles Of 1929, 2000 And 2007

stock-market-overvalued-public-domainWill the financial bubble that has been rapidly growing ever since Donald Trump won the election suddenly be popped once he takes office?  Could it be possible that we are being set up for a horrible financial crash that he will ultimately be blamed for?  Yesterday, I shared my thoughts on the incredible euphoria that we have seen since Donald Trump’s surprise victory on November 8th.  The U.S. dollar has been surging, companies are announcing that they are bringing jobs back to the U.S., and we are witnessing perhaps the greatest post-election stock market rally in Wall Street history.  In fact, the Dow, the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 all set new all-time record highs again on Thursday.  What we are seeing is absolutely unprecedented, and many believe that the good times will continue to roll as we head into 2017. (Read More….)


December 8, 2016
CLIFF KINCAID — The New York Times is claiming the ability to expose “fake news.” It should know something about the topic. So-called “fake news” from the New York Times helped bring Fidel Castro to power. Castro had urged the Soviet Union to launch the nuclear missiles it had installed in Cuba on the United States, with the potential to obliterate tens of millions of Americans…. (more)

December 8, 2016
TOM DEWEESE — This past Halloween I had an opportunity to take part in an activity that I haven’t done in a couple of decades – – hand out candy to the children on Beggars’ Night…. (more)

December 8, 2016

USA TODAY — President-elect Donald Trump’s choice to head Homeland Security is a blunt-talking retired Marine general who would become part of a small but influential team of former military officers with powerful influence over security policy in the next administration…. (more)


December 8, 2016

CLIMATE DEPOT — ‘Trump listened to what Gore had to say at their New York City meeting and then he exercised his good judgement and did the exact opposite.’… (more)


December 8, 2016
BOB UNRUH — The Democratic Party’s energy policy for the 2016 election campaign took a hard line, including a refusal to acknowledge natural gas “has been the primary (and most cost-effective) driver in reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S.,” according to the American Legislative Exchange Council…. (more)

December 8, 2016
WASHINGTON TIMES — Pressure is mounting on President Obama to grant eleventh-hour mercy in the high-profile national security cases of accused Army deserter Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, exiled NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden and transgender military secrets leaker Chelsea Manning…. (more)

December 8, 2016
MICHAEL BARONE — It’s been a tough decade for the political left. Eight years ago a Time magazine cover portrayed Barack Obama as Franklin Roosevelt, complete with cigarette and holder and a cover line proclaiming “The New New Deal.” A Newsweek cover announced “We Are All Socialists Now.”… (more)

December 8, 2016

PHILIP KLEIN — Republicans are in the process of internally debating how to repeal and replace Obamacare now that they have unified control of government, but no matter what strategy they ultimately pursue, there’s one move they could make right off the bat to make their jobs easier: immediately act to prevent more individuals from newly enrolling in Obamacare…. (more)


December 7, 2016
NEWSMAX — President-elect Donald Trump said he would only use military force “when it is in the vital national security of the United States” and pledged Tuesday to seek elimination of the federal budget sequester…. (more)

December 7, 2016
GREG COROMBOS — A recently uncovered evaluation of Pentagon spending shows $125 billion could be slashed within five years, showcasing the challenge for the incoming Trump administration to make government more efficient, an effort that will also be tested by Trump’s call for a trillion dollars in infrastructure spending…. (more)

December 7, 2016

NEWSMAX — Republicans in the House of Representatives added language to a must-pass spending bill Tuesday that would speed up the confirmation of retired Gen. James Mattis for secretary of defense, Politico reported…. (more)


December 7, 2016

NATIONAL REVIEW — The Supreme Court vacancy left by the late Justice Scalia may have guaranteed Donald Trump’s victory. Exit polls show that among the 21 percent of voters who deemed the Supreme Court as the most important factor in their decision, Trump soundly defeated Secretary Clinton by 17 points. Now Trump can reward those voters with a successor worthy of Justice Scalia. And Trump has an opportunity to both mend rifts within his party – – a critical necessity for accomplishing his presidential goals – – and achieve a historic “first” with his selection. One name on Trump’s short list accomplishes all three: Utah Supreme Court justice Thomas R. Lee…. (more)


December 7, 2016
NEWSMAX — Republicans aren’t wasting any time with putting an end to Obamacare. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday told reporters that legislation repealing the Affordable Care Act will be the first thing the new Congress tackles, a move that will help President-elect Donald Trump keep true to his campaign promise…. (more)

December 7, 2016
NEWSMAX — President-elect Donald Trump’s proposed wall on the Mexican-American border should go up within the first year of his administration, according to the majority of Republicans in a new Rasmussen Reports poll…. (more)

December 7, 2016
ROLL CALL — For years, Republicans in Congress have been eyeing an overhaul of the federal workforce – – by reducing the number of workers and curtailing benefits and pay while making it easier to fire bad employees. – See more at:… (more)

December 7, 2016

MEDIAITE — The chairman and CEO of Time Warner thinks all the talk about Donald Trump being a threat to the First Amendment is overblown. In fact, according to Variety, not only did he completely dismiss the idea out of hand at a conference today, but he actually said that’s more an issue with the Democrats:… (more)


December 7, 2016
GARTH KANT — It’s difficult to imagine a more clear-cut a case of media bias. One reporter at a television station said on the air, “Ted Cruz is like the dark lord from Star Wars,” and, “I think he’s the Antichrist.” Another reporter at the same television station stated in a private Facebook post that she was “happy and relieved” the morning after Donald Trump won the presidential election…. (more)

December 7, 2016
NEWSMAX — Actor and director Denzel Washington chastised the media Tuesday over “BS” reporting, saying they should stick to the truth. “If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed; if you do read it, you’re misinformed,” Washington said at the premier of his upcoming film “Fences” at the National Museum of African American History and Culture, The Hill reported…. (more)

December 7, 2016
WESLEY PRUDEN — The populist saber continues to cut the elites down to size. The elites, who think they know it all and are uniquely qualified to tell everyone else how to live, took another pasting Sunday in the Italian elections. Prime Minister Matteo Renzi felt so humiliated by voter rejection of his proposals for constitutional reform that he quit on the spot…. (more)

December 5, 2016
The ‘logical myopia’ in today’s thinking about same-sex ‘marriage’
ALAN KEYES — There are times when it is critically important to reason according to principle. Why? So that we can appreciate the relationship between one object, event, or circumstance and another. It is rather like family relations. Sites like ancestry.com have become increasingly popular because people see an advantage or benefit to be gained by increasing their awareness of kinship relations that go unnoticed until we begin tracing our roots back to their origin…. (more)

December 5, 2016
CLIFF KINCAID — With the selections of General James N. “Mad Dog” Mattis as Secretary of Defense and Lt. General Michael T. Flynn as national security adviser, President-elect Donald J. Trump has indicated that he is prepared to meet foreign threats from Russia, China, and global Islam. Indeed, Flynn argues in his book The Field of Fight that the U.S. is facing a “working coalition” of enemies that includes radical Islamists, Russia, China, North Korea, Iran, Syria, Cuba, Bolivia, Venezuela and Nicaragua…. (more)

December 5, 2016
GREG COROMBOS — Republicans in Congress are fired up by the chance to accomplish big things in the early days of the upcoming Trump administration and move away from the crisis budgeting that faces them once again in the lame-duck session…. (more)

December 5, 2016
WASHINGTON TIMES — Democrats are increasingly antsy over the lineup President-elect Donald Trump has announced for his Cabinet, but they are also powerless to do very much to stop him – – thanks to their own leader, Sen. Harry Reid. It’s unlikely Mr. Reid had a President Trump in mind when he pulled the so-called “nuclear option” trigger three years ago, changing Senate rules to eviscerate the use of a filibuster to block presidential nominees…. (more)

December 5, 2016

SHANNEN W. COFFIN — Because Senate Democrats eliminated the filibuster for executive-branch appointments, President-elect Trump’s nominees should have relatively smooth sailing in their confirmations. The (not yet official) nomination of General James Mattis to be secretary of defense is the lone exception, and some Democrats quickly realized their opportunity to throw sand in the gears…. (more)


December 5, 2016

HUGH HEWITT — Donald Rumsfeld served his second tour of duty as Secretary of Defense from Jan. 20, 2001, to Dec. 18, 2006. He is one of America’s most accomplished public servants. And he was arguably the best prepared secretary of defense, having not only served in that job before, from Nov. 20, 1975 to Jan. 20, 1977, but having also been White House chief of staff, America’s ambassador to NATO and a congressman, among many other successes…. (more)


Top News – 12/9/2016

Trump’s pick for environment agency chief sued government over climate rules
Pruitt, who must be confirmed by the US Senate, is an ardent opponent of federal regulations to curb climate change and has questioned the science underlying global warming. He is one of dozens of state officials who have mounted a legal challenge to President Barack Obama’s limits on greenhouse-gas emissions from power plants…

On Friday, Auspicious 9-Minute Prayer Window Opens for First and Last Time in 28 Years
The rabbi specified the ninth year of the Jubilee cycle, the ninth month, the ninth day, and the ninth hour after sunrise. According to the rabbi, it was in the ninth hour that the Children of Israel were answered on the shores of the Red Sea.

Environmentalist Hyperventilates When Tucker Asks Simple Question
(Video) All regulations are good and anyone who challenges them is an accomplice to Hitler’s rise, is a denier,” Carlson summarized Schrode’s statement. “That’s not the kind of conversation that leads to solutions, it’s the kind that leads to demonizing other people, and that’s bad.”

Europe’s Epochal Elections
Now, thanks to elections in France and Austria, an answer is emerging; Europeans appear not ready to “go gentle into that good night” but will “rage, rage against the dying of the light.”

Solomon Islands hit by powerful aftershocks after magnitude-7.8 quake
Residents in Solomon Islands were hit by powerful aftershocks following a magnitude-7.8 earthquake which struck 130 kilometres from the capital Honiara.

Tsunami warnings are cancelld after big Pacific earthquake
New Zealand – Tsunami warnings for several Pacific islands, including those in Hawaii, were canceled Friday after authorities determined that a powerful magnitude 7.7 earthquake that struck near the Solomon Islands did not pose a broad tsunami threat.

6.5M Earthquake Hits 100 Miles off Ferndale, Humboldt County
An earthquake with a magnitude of 6.5 struck Thursday morning about 100 miles of the coast of Ferndale, in Humboldt County, California. There were no immediate reports of damage. The US Geological Survey originally reported the 6:50 a.m. PT quake as having a magnitude of 6.8.

Democrats plot uphill fight against some Trump nominations
U.S. Senate Democrats plan to fight some of President-elect Donald Trump’s choices for top administration jobs, but history and the party’s minority status in the chamber are not on their side. A simple majority of 51 votes is needed in the 100-member Senate to confirm nominations. Louisiana will select its newest senator on Saturday. If the Republicans…hold on to the seat, they will control at least 52 seats…

Magnitude-6.5 quake strikes off coast of Humboldt County
A magnitude-6.5 earthquake struck off the coast of Humboldt County Thursday morning, followed by aftershocks. For the most part, the aftershocks have been insignificant. There have been no reports of damage or injuries. The USGS sent out a tweet confirming the quake, roughly 100 miles out in the ocean, west of Ferndale.

ISIS has flooded Europe with 1,500 highly-trained terrorists ‘ready to launch attacks’
MORE than 1,500 jihadists fighting with ISIS in Syria and Iraq have returned to Europe with orders to “carry out attacks”, an EU report warned. An estimated 5,000 European ISIS fanatics went to Syria and Iraq… Around 30 to 35 per cent have returned with “specific missions”, while the other half remained in the battle theatre – which amounted to between 2,000 and 2,500 Europeans.

Peace process should not be ‘all or nothing,’ says EU ambassador
Rather than cling to an “all or nothing” peace process, the international community should promote smaller advancements in areas such as water, Lars Faaborg-Andersen, the European Union’s ambassador to Israel said at seminar in Tel Aviv on Thursday. “We’ve spent too much time promoting an Israeli-Palestinian solution that is all or nothing,” he said.

Palestinian tries to stab Israeli police, shot dead: Israel
An 18-year-old Palestinian threatened Israeli border police with a knife at a flashpoint junction in the occupied West Bank on Thursday and was shot dead, Israeli authorities said. The incident occurred at the Tapuah junction near the northern West Bank city of Nablus, where a number of attacks have taken place in recent months, police said.

Japan tags dementia sufferers with barcodes
A Japanese city has introduced a novel way to keep track of senior citizens with dementia who are prone to getting lost — tagging their fingers and toes with scan-able barcodes.

Satanic display causes controversy in Boca Raton
A Satanic display is causing controversy in Boca Raton on the day the city will celebrate its holiday parade. Now, some local interfaith clergy members are coming together to take a stand.

Dallas Police and Fire Pension Board ends run on the bank, stops $154M in withdrawals
The Dallas Police and Fire Pension System’s Board of Trustees suspended lump-sum withdrawals from the pension fund Thursday, staving off a possible restraining order and stopping $154 million in withdrawal requests.

MK Bennett: Amona Bill Paves Way for Annexation of Judea and Samaria
Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett, leader of the Jewish Home party, hailed the preliminary passage of a controversial bill to legalize Israeli settlement outposts as paving the way for Israel’s eventual annexation of Judea and Samaria.

Syrian army’s Aleppo advance slows, but victory in sight
The Syrian army’s advance in Aleppo slowed on Thursday but a victory was still firmly in sight after President Bashar al-Assad vowed that retaking the city would change the course of the six-year-old war.

Polar vortex redux? U.S. forecasters say it could hit next week
Anticipation of a freezing blast began to build this week when weather maps and forecast models showed similarities between next week’s system and one that developed in January 2014.

Britain faces ‘unprecedented’ terror threat, warns MI6 chief
But what I do know is this — we cannot be safe from the threats that emanate from that land unless the civil war is brought to an end,”…..

UN official: Regulation Law violates international law
The UN human rights chief on Thursday slammed the “Regulation Law”, which passed its first reading in the Knesset on Wednesday, saying it would clearly violate international law.


Top Headlines – 12/9/2016

  • Futures rise as ‘Trump rally’ rolls on (Read More), Oil Advances as European Stocks Extend Gains; Korean Won Slides (BBG)
  • Syrian government forces press attack in east Aleppo (Read More)
  • Trump: China Will Have to ‘Play by the Rules’ (Read More)
  • Trump’s Cabinet Picks Signal Coming Deregulation Moves (Read More)
  • Russia’s Military Buildup on the Baltic to Test Trump on NATO (Read More)
  • OPEC’s Historic Deal Won’t Be Enough to Drain Oil Stockpiles (Read More)
  • OPEC Deal Faces Test as Cartel Seeks Russia Commitment (Read More)
  • Dutch court convicts anti-Islam politician Wilders of inciting discrimination (Read More)
  • Korea’s Park Impeached as Protesters Vent Anger Over Corruption (Read More)
  • In Trump stronghold, jobs aplenty, but paychecks thin (Read More)
  • Trump Team Looks for Ways to Keep Nuclear Power Alive (Read More)
  • Europe’s Next Big Currency Opportunity Just Got a Lot Closer (Read More)
  • U.S. defense chief reassures Afghans amid questions over Trump’s policies (Read More)
  • China Faces Off Against World on Open Global Markets (Read More)
  • Turkish jets hit Islamic State targets in Syria (Read More)
  • Democrats plot uphill fight against some Trump nominations (Read More)
  • China Car Sales Rise 20% as Buyers Rush to Beat Expiring Tax Cut (Read More)
  • Euro zone bailout fund not preparing Italy aid: Regling (Read More)
  • ECB’s QE powers limited as banks fail to transmit cheap credit: Rimsevics (Read More)

UN criticises Israel settlement law that would legalise 4,000 West Bank homes

UN says Israeli bill to legalize settler homes ‘unequivocally illegal’

UN official: Regulation Law violates international law

Bennett: Outpost bill paves way for annexing West Bank

Settlements bill to be pushed off until Trump inauguration

B’Tselem: IDF exploits Palestinian homes for personal use

Shin Bet busts terror cell planning to shoot up IDF base in the capital

Hamas cell plotting kidnapping arrested

IDF map of Hezbollah positions revealed as fabrication

Liberman: WMDs Israel thwarted from reaching Hezbollah were chemical arms

Congress okays $600m. for Israel missile defense

First of new F-35 stealth fighter jets en route to Israel

German shipyard building Israeli subs targeted in ‘massive’ cyber attack

Israel, Greece, Cyprus agree on European gas pipeline

Merkel’s party praised for labeling BDS anti-Semitic

France allows Holocaust museums to digitize WWII archives

Saudi journalist suggests ties with Israel improve if Israeli Arabs come work in Saudi Arabia

Iran Races to Clinch Oil Deals Before Donald Trump Takes Office

Iran Opens Amusement Park that Teaches Kids to Fight America and Israel

Obama blames U.S. intelligence for missing rise of the Islamic State

ISIS calls for attacks on US bases in uneasy island of Bahrain

US official: Some 50,000 Islamic State terrorists killed since 2014

Four-star brass say no-fly zone would work again in Syria

Chechen leader claims his troops eager to fight ‘scum’ in Syria

Aleppo’s fall won’t end the Syrian conflict – it will signal a more terrifying stage

Turkey conducting intense talks with Russia for Aleppo ceasefire, Erdogan spokesman says

UN humanitarian advisor says US and Russia ‘poles apart’ on Aleppo

Russia says Syria army halts Aleppo attacks as rebels cornered

Aleppo battle: Shelling resumes after humanitarian pause

British spy chief says Islamic State plotting attacks as Russia makes ‘desert’ of Syria

Russia Testing Drone Submarine With Nuclear Capability

Russia aims to ‘destabilize Germany,’ Berlin says

EU unblocks visa-free travel for Ukraine, Georgia

Britain faces ‘unprecedented’ terror threat, warns MI6 chief

Marine Le Pen: No free school for illegal migrants in France

In Germany, some Muslim refugees are converting to Christianity

Communist Failure: Food In Cuba is Now Going to Tourists as Locals Starve

Unemployed fishermen in Venezuela become pirates, terrorize coastal towns

Egypt president says his economic reforms are no ‘picnic’

Japan ratifies Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact despite Trump’s plan to withdraw

Stocks Hit Fresh Records as Dow Transports Rallies

American Dream collapsing for young adults, study says, as odds plunge that children will earn more than their parents

Trump picks opponent of higher minimum wage for Labor Department

United States Steel would like to accelerate its investments and hire back laid-off employees now that Donald Trump will be occupying the Oval Office

There will be no peace in the Republican Party unless Donald Trump can control his ego

Sheryl Sandberg on Facebook and fake news: ‘We don’t think it swayed the election’

‘Lives Are At Risk,’ Hillary Clinton Warns Over Fake News, ‘Pizzagate’

Clinton calls ‘fake news’ a threat to U.S. democracy

There could be 3,000 ‘zombie voters’ casting ballots in UK general elections

Trump renews China criticism, visits Ohio State attack victims on ‘Thank You’ tour

Trump Sends Mixed Messages on China, Says Relationship Must Improve

South Korean Lawmakers Vote Overwhelmingly To Impeach President

Police Spy Tools Evolve Faster Than Lawmakers Can Keep Up

US, UK spies targeted airline passengers’ mobiles: report

Teen driver dies in crash while live on Facebook

Firefighter Brawl: 2 Accused of Blocking Other Crew

John Glenn, first US astronaut to orbit Earth, dies aged 95

US official warns of North Korean nuclear capabilities

North Korea still struggling with nuclear missile re-entry

Fukushima radiation detected in Tillamook Bay, Gold Beach

Earthquakes: Reckoning with ‘The Big One’ in California-and it just got bigger

Solomon Islands rocked by magnitude-7.8 quake, widespread tsunami warning issued across Pacific

Solomon Islands hit by powerful aftershocks after magnitude-7.8 quake

Offshore Magnitude-6.5 Earthquake Shakes Northern CA Coast

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Illapel, Chile

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Puerto El Triunfo, El Salvador

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 28,000ft

Colima volcano in Mexico erupts to 24,000ft

Fuego volcano in Guatemala erupts to 20,000ft

Copahue volcano in Argentina erupts to 11,000ft

Dukono volcano in Indonesia erupts to 10,000ft

3 dead in 40-car pileup on I-96 near Fowlerville

Polar vortex unleashed: Severe cold snap likely in U.S. next week

The lakes of the world are disappearing – in pictures

Perito Moreno Glacier Collapsing in Argentina

Paris makes all public transport free in battle against ‘worst air pollution for 10 years’

Giraffes ‘threatened with extinction’

Fire ants could become Australia’s worst pest, experts warn

5 babies born in New York City with Zika-related birth defect since July

A Mummy’s DNA May Help Solve The Mystery Of The Origins Of Smallpox

Egyptian mummies virtually unwrapped in Australia

Feathered dinosaur tail in 99-million-year-old amber

Lost and found: Japan tags dementia sufferers with barcodes

Some cases of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder could be misdiagnosed immune disorders

Heroin deaths surpass gun homicides for the first time, CDC data shows

Cancer patient sues hospital over flesh-eating bug

UC Davis Doctors Perform Surgery On Baby Still In The Womb

More elderly people being diagnosed with STIs such as chlamydia and genital warts

Beyond Bathrooms: Inside the Largest Ever Survey of Transgender People in America

Israeli Attorney General improves citizenship laws for LGBT couples

Today, the pope’s love affair with Mary is on display

Satanic display causes controversy in Boca Raton

Larry & Tiz Huch – You Are Cursed if You Oppose Israel

4 in 10 Evangelicals Think Physician Assisted Suicide is ‘Morally Acceptable

Phillip H. Lancaster – The Apostles were Laymen

Google Street View of Jesse Duplantis 35,000 Square Foot Home

Duplantis builds largest home on East Bank

Jim Bakker: Trump Called To Thank Me, So Please Send Money!

Andy Stanley Says He Doesn’t Care About the Birth of Christ

Serious Concerns Over Beth Moore’s New Series, “Entrusted”

Matriarch of Alleged Killer Church Cult (Word of Life Church) Sentenced in Teen’s Fatal Beating

Historic Christian Church to Be Converted Into Mosque; Members Take Down Cross From Altar

Boko Haram Brainwashing Boys to Kill Their Christian Teachers


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.


Do You Know Him?


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 In A Nutshell

Now, with regard to this rule of faith—that we may from this point acknowledge what it is which we defend—it is, you must know, that which prescribes the belief that there is one only God, and that He is none other than the Creator of the world, who produced all things out of nothing through His own Word, first of all sent forth; that this Word is called His Son, and, under the name of God, was seen “in diverse manners” by the patriarchs, heard at all times in the prophets, at last brought down by the Spirit and Power of the Father into the Virgin Mary, was made flesh in her womb, and, being born of her, went forth as Jesus Christ; thenceforth He preached the new law and the new promise of the kingdom of heaven, worked miracles; having been crucified, He rose again the third day; (then) having ascended into the heavens, He sat at the right hand of the Father; sent instead of Himself the Power of the Holy Ghost to lead such as believe; will come with glory to take the saints to the enjoyment of everlasting life and of the heavenly promises, and to condemn the wicked to everlasting fire, after the resurrection of both these classes shall have happened, together with the restoration of their flesh. This rule, as it will be proved, was taught by Christ, and raises amongst ourselves no other questions than those which heresies introduce, and which make men heretics.

Tertullian, “On Prescription Against Heretics,” Chapter XIIl


What Is the Gospel?

This post is adapted from the tract “What Is the Gospel?” by Greg Gilbert.


A Message from God

What exactly do Christians mean when they talk about the “gospel of Jesus Christ”? Since the word “gospel” means “good news,” when Christians talk about the gospel, they’re simply telling the good news about Jesus! It’s a message from God saying, “Good news! Here is how you can be saved from my judgment!” That’s an announcement you can’t afford to ignore.

Why Is the Gospel Good News?

So, what is the good news about Jesus Christ?

Since the earliest Christians announced the good news about Jesus, it has been organized around these questions:

  1. Who made us, and to whom are we accountable?
  2. What is our problem?
  3. What is God’s solution to our problem?
  4. How can I be included in his solution?

Christians through the centuries since Christ have answered those questions with the same truth from the Bible.

  1. We are accountable to God.
  2. Our problem is our sin against him.
  3. God’s solution is salvation through Jesus Christ.
  4. We come to be included in that salvation by faith and repentance.

Let’s summarize those points like this: God, Mankind, Jesus Christ, and Our Response.

God

The first thing to know about the good news of Jesus is that “in the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth” (Gen. 1:1). Everything starts from that point, so if you get that point wrong then everything else that follows will be wrong. Because God created everything—including us—he has the right to tell us how to live. You have to understand that in order to understand the good news about Jesus. To understand just how glorious and life-giving the gospel of Jesus Christ is, we have to understand that God is also holy and righteous. He is determined never to ignore or tolerate sin. Including ours!

Mankind

When God created the first human beings, Adam and Eve, he intended for them to live under his righteous rule in perfect joy—obeying him and living in fellowship with him. When Adam disobeyed God, though, and ate the one fruit that God had told him not to eat, that fellowship with God was broken. Moreover, Adam and Eve had declared rebellion against God. They were denying his authority over their lives.

It’s not just Adam and Eve who are guilty of sin. The Bible says, “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). Sin is the rejection of God himself and his authority over those to whom he gives life.

Once you understand sin in that light, you begin to understand why “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). That’s not just physical death, but spiritual death, a forceful separating of our sinful, rebellious selves from the presence of God forever. The Bible teaches that the final destiny for unbelieving sinners is eternal, active judgment in a place called “hell.”

But . . .

Jesus Christ

The word “Christ” means “anointed one,” referring to anointing a king with oil when he is crowned. So, when we say “Jesus Christ,” we’re saying that Jesus is a King!

When Jesus began his public ministry, he told the people, “The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent and believe the good news!” As Jesus died on a cross, the awful weight of all our sins fell on his shoulders. The sentence of death God had pronounced against rebellious sinners struck. And Jesus died. For you and me!

But the story doesn’t end there. Jesus the Crucified is no longer dead. The Bible tells us that he rose from the grave. Jesus’s rising from the grave was God’s way of saying, “What Jesus claimed about who he is and what he came to do is true!”

Our Response

What does God expect us to do with the information that Jesus died in our place so we can be saved from God’s righteous wrath against our sins? He expects us to respond with repentance and faith.

To repent of our sins means to turn away from our rebellion against God. Repentance doesn’t mean we’ll bring an immediate end to our sinning. It does mean, though, that we’ll never again live at peace with our sins.

Not only that, but we also turn to God in faith. Faith is reliance. It’s a promise-founded trust in the risen Jesus to save you from your sins. If God is ever to count us righteous, he’ll have to do it on the basis of someone else’s record, someone who’s qualified to stand in as our substitute. And that’s what happens when a person is saved by Jesus: All our sins are credited to Jesus who took the punishment for them, and the perfect righteousness of Jesus is then credited to us when we place our trust in what he has done for us! That’s what faith means—to rely on Jesus, to trust in him alone to stand in our place and win a righteous verdict from God!


Ravi Zacharias explains the gospel in two minutes:


The Gospel on 5 Fingers

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.


Please take the time to watch this clip, so that you might understand the authentic Gospel


This is the Gospel:

Friend, God is holy. There is a God in heaven who has created you and me, and He is the authority over both of us. He is perfectly holy. “In Him is Light, and there is no darkness at all” (1 John 1:5). And the problem with that is that if we want to have fellowship with God, we have to be light and no darkness at all. And yet here’s the problem: we are darkness. We are sinful. We’ve all broken His law. We’ve all lied, stolen, we’ve all looked with lust, we’ve all been angry with our brothers in our hearts. We’ve all fallen short of the glorious standard of perfection that God requires (Rom 3:23). And there’s nothing we can do about it. No amount of works, no amount of contrition, no amount of bad feelings, no amount of church attendance, no amount of Bible reading, no amount of evangelism can earn forgiveness of our sins and the righteousness which God requires (Titus 3:5; cf. Isa 64:6).

And yet God is gracious, and He loves us, and as His creatures He wants to display His glory in us by rescuing us from that. And so He sent His Son—God in the flesh, the Lord Jesus Christ—to be born as a helpless little baby (John 1:14; 3:16; Col 2:9). God of the universe, Sustainer of the universe, Himself being sustained in the womb of a teenage Hebrew girl, and upholding the world by the word of His power (Heb 1:3) while He is upheld by the nutrients from her own body! Unspeakable! And in great humility, He grows up with the growing pains of life in a fallen world, though He Himself never being with any sin—without sin entirely (2 Cor 5:21; Heb 4:15; 7:26). And He lives a perfectly righteous life. The way that you and I have failed to live before God—the way that we have failed in thought, word, and deed, and fallen short of God’s glory—Christ never did. Not even a thought. He loved God, His Father, perfectly. He always walked in perfect righteousness. He lived the life that you were commanded to live, that I was commanded to live, that we failed to live. He lived that perfect life that God is worthy of.

And not only did He live for us, He died for us. He went to the cross. Our sin demanded death. Our sin demanded eternal punishment. Our sin demanded wrath—just wrath exercised on us for eternity (Rom 6:23). But because of the infinite worth of Christ’s person, He was on that cross. And on that cross, God exercised upon Him the full fury of His own anger (Rom 3:24–26; 2 Cor 5:21; Gal 3:10–14), that was rightly due to me and rightly due to you, and that you will experience if you don’t turn from your sin and trust in this Messiah. Christ was born, lived, died, and was raised (1 Cor 15:3–4). And He rose from the grave after being dead, demonstrating His victory over sin and death.

And now God promises that if you turn from your sin, if you repudiate all that you are and all that you were and all that you love, and you turn away from a life of pursuing sin—and if you repudiate not only your bad works but your good works, if you turn from trying to earn your salvation by all the good deeds that you might want to do as a moral person—if you turn away from all of that (Acts 17:30–31), and you trust in Christ alone for righteousness (Phil 3:7–8; cf. Rom 3:28; 10:4), God promises that He will forgive you. He will have treated Christ on the cross as if Christ lived your life. And He will then treat you, justly and legally and righteously, as if you lived Christ’s perfect life of righteousness (2 Cor 5:21). And you can be saved to know the God you were created to love and enjoy. You can have the fullness of joy, the eternal pleasures that are at the Father’s right hand in heaven (Ps 16:11), and begin even now, because eternal life is to know God (John 17:3).

Friend, would you repent? Would you turn from your sin and trust in this perfect Savior to avail for you before God, to pay for your sin and to provide your righteousness?


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


The Perseverance (Security) of the Saints

Notice all the Scripture references!

It is not just a handful of texts that teach the perseverance of the saints: the entire gospel sustains and confirms it. The Father has chosen them before the foundation of the world (Eph. 1:4), ordained them to eternal life (Acts 13:48), to be conformed to the image of his Son (Rom. 8:29). This election stands (Rom. 9:11; Heb. 6:17) and in due time carries with it the calling and justification and glorification (Rom. 8:30). Christ, in whom all the promises of God are Yes and Amen (2 Cor. 1:20), died for those who were given him by the Father (John 17:6, 12) in order that he might give them eternal life and not lose a single one of them (6:40; 17:2); he therefore gives them eternal life and they will never be lost in all eternity; no one will snatch them out of his hand (6:39; 10:28).

The Holy Spirit who regenerates them remains eternally with them (14:16) and seals them for the day of redemption (Eph. 1:13; 4:30). The covenant of grace is firm and confirmed with an oath (Heb. 6:16–18; 13:20), unbreakable like a marriage (Eph. 5:31–32), like a testament (Heb. 9:17), and by virtue of that covenant, God calls his elect. He inscribes the law upon their inmost being, puts his fear in their heart (Heb. 8:10; 10:14ff.), will not let them be tempted beyond their strength (1 Cor. 10:13), confirms and completes the good work he has begun in them (1 Cor. 1:9; Phil. 1:6), and keeps them for the return of Christ to receive the heavenly inheritance (1 Thess. 5:23; 2 Thess. 3:3; 1 Pet. 1:4–5).

In his intercession before the Father, Christ acts in such a way that their faith may not fail (Luke 22:32), that in the world they may be kept from the evil one (John 17:11, 20), that they may be saved for all times (Heb. 7:20), that their sins will be forgiven them (1 John 2:1), and that they may all be where he is to behold his glory (John 17:24). The benefits of Christ, which the Holy Spirit imparts to them, are all irrevocable (Rom. 11:29). Those who are called are also glorified (8:30). Those who are adopted as children are heirs of eternal life (8:17; Gal. 4:7). Those who believe have eternal life already here and now (John 3:16). That life itself, being eternal, cannot be lost. It cannot die since it cannot sin (1 John 3:9). Faith is a firm ground (Heb. 11:1), hope is an anchor (6:19) and does not disappoint us (Rom. 5:5), and love never ends (1 Cor. 13:8).

Herman Bavinck, Reformed Dogmatics: Holy Spirit, Church, and New Creation, volume 4 (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2008), 270.


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Avoiding Spiritual Counterfeiters

Dr. John MacArthur of Grace to You sheds light on how false teachers are to be treated. Having a clear understanding a person’s error is of the utmost importance, as you will see:

The church at Ephesus had a great beginning. Other churches throughout Asia Minor grew out of it. Yet despite the influence of the apostle Paul’s ministry, the church was never impervious to false teachers. As a result, Paul wrote this epistle to Timothy to remind him of his responsibility to stop false teachers and set things in order in the church. He commanded Timothy to maintain pure teaching and set an example for other churches to follow.

Paul speaks of the necessity of stopping false teachers in verses 3-11. Stopping them demands an understanding of four things: their error, their goal, their motive, and their result.

View article →

God in the Manger

What is the real meaning of Christmas?

The answer may just surprise you.

For many, Christmas is the time to think of Jesus Christ as a baby in a manger. While the birth of Christ is a special and miraculous event, it isn’t the primary focus. The central truth of the Christmas story is this: the Child of Christmas is God.

God in a Manger

Christmas is not about the Savior’s infancy; it is about His deity. The humble birth of Jesus Christ was never intended to conceal the reality that God was being born into the world.

But the modern world’s version of Christmas does just that. And consequently for the greater part of humanity, Christmas has no legitimate meaning at all.

I don’t suppose anyone can ever fathom what it means for God to be born in a manger. How does one explain the Almighty stooping to become a tiny infant? Our minds cannot begin to understand what was involved in God’s becoming man.

Yet He did. Without forsaking His divine nature or diminishing His deity, He was born into our world as a tiny infant.

He was fully human, with all the needs and emotions that are common to us all. Yet He was also fully God—all wise and all powerful.

For nearly 2,000 years, heretics and skeptics have attacked the truth about who Jesus is. They’ll say He is one of many gods, a created being, a high angel, a good teacher, a prophet, and so on. The common thread of all such theories is that they make Jesus less than God. But the biblical evidence is overwhelming that this child in the manger was God incarnate.

One passage in particular, written by the apostle Paul, captures the essence of Jesus’ divine nature and underscores the truths that make Christmas truly wonderful.

Colossians 1:15–20 says,

He is the image of the invisible God, the first born of all creation. For. . . all things have been created by Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the first born from the dead; so that He Himself might come to have first place in everything. For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross.

A Ghostly Illusion?

Paul was writing to the Christians at Colossae. The city was under the influence of what came to be known as gnosticism. Its adherents fancied themselves the only ones who had access to the truth, which they believed was so complex that common people couldn’t know it. Among other things, they taught philosophical dualism—the idea that matter is evil and spirit is good. They believed that because God is spirit, He is good, but He could never touch matter, which is evil.

Therefore they also concluded that God couldn’t be the creator of the physical universe, because if God made matter, He would be responsible for evil. And they taught that God could never become a man, because as a man He would have to dwell in a body made of evil matter.

Those pre-gnostics explained away the incarnation by saying that Jesus was a good angel whose body was only an illusion. That teaching and others like it pervaded the early church; many of the New Testament epistles specifically refute such pre-gnostic ideas. In fact, the apostle John attacked the foundation of gnostic teaching when he wrote “By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God; and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God” (1 John 4:2).

The apostle Paul refuted that same heresy when he wrote, “By Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created by Him and for Him” (1:16). He specifically affirmed that Jesus is God in the flesh—the Creator of everything.

Like Father, Like Son

Ironically, some of the cults that deny Jesus’ deity try to use Colossians 1:15–20 to support their view. They suggest, for example, that the phrase “the image of the invisible God” (v. 15) hints that Jesus was merely a created being who bore the image of God in the same sense as all humanity. But the truth is that although we were created in God’s likeness, we only resemble Him. Jesus, on the other hand, is God’s exact image.

The Greek word translated “image” means a perfect replica, a precise copy, a duplicate. Paul was saying that God Himself is fully manifest in the Person of His Son, who is none other than Jesus Christ. He is the exact image of God. Jesus Himself said, “He who has seen Me has seen the Father” (John 14:9).

Hebrews 1 parallels Colossians 1:15–20 at a number of key points. Regarding the statement that Christ is the image of God, for example, Hebrews 1:3 makes an identical affirmation: “He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature.” Christ is to God as the warm brilliance of light is to the sun. He gives light and life. He reveals God’s very essence. They cannot be divided, and neither has ever existed without the other—they are one (John 10:30).

Scripture repeatedly says that God is invisible (John 1:18; 5:37; 1 Timothy 1:17; and Colossians 1:15). But through Christ the invisible God has been made visible. God’s full likeness is revealed in Him. Colossians 1:19 takes the truth a step further: “It was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him.” He is not just an outline of God; He is fully God.

Colossians 2:9 is even more explicit: “In Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form.” Nothing is lacking. No attribute is absent. He is God in the fullest possible sense, the perfect image.

The Rightful Heir

In Colossians 1:15 Paul says Jesus is “the first born of all creation.” Those who reject the deity of Christ have made much of that phrase, assuming it means Jesus was a created being. But the word translated “first born” describes Jesus’ rank, not His origin. The first-born in a Hebrew family was the heir, the ranking one, the one who had the right of inheritance. And in a royal family, he had the right to rule.

So Christ is the One who inherits all creation and the right to rule over it. It doesn’t mean He was born first in order, for He wasn’t.

In Psalm 89:27 God says of David, “I also shall make him My first born, the highest of the kings of the earth.” There the meaning of “first born” is given in plain language: “the highest of the kings of the earth.” That’s what first-born means—Christ is “King of kings and Lord of lords” (Revelation 17:16).

Hebrews 1 again has a parallel statement. Verse 2 says God has appointed His Son “heir of all things.” He is the primary One, the Son who has the right to the inheritance, the ranking Person, the Lord of all, heir of all creation.

Creator and King

The claim that “first born” means Christ is a created being completely ignores the context of Colossians 1:15. Remember, verses 16–17 explicitly name Him as Creator of everything. Christ is not part of creation; He is the Creator, the very arm of God, active from the beginning in calling the universe and all creatures into existence. John 1:3 says, “All things came into being by Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.” That could not be true if He were Himself a created being.

Hebrews 1:2 also identifies Christ as the Creator. Christ was the Person of the Trinity through whom the world was made and for whom it was fashioned. The size of the universe is incomprehensible. Who made all that? Science cannot explain it; but Scripture does. God created it all.

Who?

The babe in Bethlehem. He made everything.

The post God in the Manger appeared first on The Master’s Seminary.

December 8, 2016: Random Aberrations, Apostasies, and Heresies

Looking at my collection of links today, it was hard to believe it has only been a week since my last “RAAH” post — so many things in the world of false teachings!  And this is just the highlights!!!  So hold on to your hats.
A perfect example of the false teachings of Rick Warren.  The man is downrightdangerous!
The Clayton Jennings saga demonstrates so much that is wrong with today’s fluffy church.  Multiple sex partners have come forward, and Jennings is blowing things off as being “a long time ago.”
The heretical book “The Shack” is soon to be released as a movie.  Please tell your friends not to enrich those who promote heresy.  The Shack is pure heresy, and no one claiming the name of Christ should be reading it.
I continue to be surprised at what goes on in what are supposed to be “churches.”  But I’m NOT surprised to see the connection with Bethel Redding!
Oh goody — A conference for women, led by heretics and false teachers.  No wonder women are more and more the victims of false teachings.
The Watchman Fellowship has produced a new profile, this time on heretic Bart D. Ehrman.
The Troubling Truth About Bonhoeffer’s Theology.   And yet Christians continue to praise him as an excellent teacher!
Fake Christian Jim Wallis.
Contending for the faith on social media.
Doug Evans has handed out his “False Teacher of the Year” award to Rick Joyner.  Excellent choice!
An interesting lecture by Ken Ham, exposing the many theologians who give up the Bibleas their authority and place “science” as their ultimate authority.
It never ceases to amaze me the way false prophets continue to propagate and actually get people to listen to them!!  These wolves pop up so quickly that it’s impossible to keep up with them.  Just use discernment, knowing that anyone claiming a direct word from God is a liar.  (Notice this link also shows two “churches” — Revolution Church and Potential Church — who apostatize using movie productions to teach)
Remember Todd White, the guy who teaches you to read yourself into the Bible?  Well has turned the gospel upside down.  It’s no wonder that he wears his hair like a member of the Rastafarian religion — he has no understanding of the Christian faith.
Speaking of Todd White, he and his church Bethel Redding are 100% frauds and tools of Satan.
Another testimony by someone who was with Adventures in Missions and The World Race.
Andy Stanley doesn’t care about the birth of Christ!

December 9, 2016: Daily Devotional Guide Collection

December 9 Christ’s Outward Appearance

“… Being found in appearance as a man.”

Philippians 2:8

✧✧✧

Many people view Christ only as a man, but He is God.

After winning a gold medal at the 1924 Olympics in Paris, Scottish runner Eric Liddell served as a missionary in China; he died in a prison camp during World War II. The camp’s prisoners loved Eric, for he served them so unselfishly. It was only at his funeral that they first learned he was an Olympic hero. They had had no idea of his full identity.

Most people didn’t realize Christ’s full identity either, for He was “found in appearance as a man” (Phil. 2:8). At first glance that phrase seems like a repetition of the end of verse 7, “being made in the likeness of men.” We could paraphrase verse 8 to read, “He was discovered to appear as a man.” The difference between that and verse 7 is a shift in focus. In verse 8 we view the humiliation of Christ from the viewpoint of those who saw Him. Christ was the God–man, but as people looked at Him, they saw the “appearance” (Greek, schema, “outward form”) of a man. Paul was implying that though Christ appeared to be a man, there was much more to Him that could not naturally be seen.

For Christ to become man was humbling enough. For Him not to have been recognized must have been humiliating. He performed miracles and taught authoritatively, yet the typical responses were: “You are a Samaritan and have a demon” (John 8:48) and, “Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How does He now say, ‘I have come down out of heaven’?” (John 6:42). Because their minds were darkened by sin, people recognized His humanity but could not see His deity. They could not recognize who He really was. They not only treated the King of kings as a man but as the worst of men—a criminal.

Unlike people who don’t recognize Christ’s true identity, let’s honor Him through a life of worship and obedience.

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Suggestions for Prayer: Worship Christ for who He really is—the King of kings and Lord of lords. Praise Him for this truth in your prayer time.

For Further Study: Christ was not only fully man but also fully God. Read the following verses in which Christ Himself bears testimony that He is God: Luke 22:69–70; John 10:30, 37–38; 12:45; 14:7–10. What else should one find in these verses?[1]


December 9

What Matters Most

Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth,Christ is preached; and in this I rejoice, yes, and will rejoice.

Philippians 1:18

The word “preached” in today’s verse means “to proclaim with authority.” Regardless of the personal cost, Paul was determined that Christ be proclaimed with authority.

Even when Paul’s detractors preached the true gospel, it had an impact. A selfishly motivated preacher can still be used of God because the truth is more powerful than the package it comes in.

Paul lived to see the gospel proclaimed—he didn’t care who received the credit. That’s to be the attitude of every pastor, teacher, elder, deacon, leader, and layperson in the church. In all that he suffered, Paul didn’t quit, lash out, break down, or lose his joy. That’s because the cause of Christ was being furthered and His name proclaimed. It was all Paul cared about. That’s an attitude the grace of Christ instills in all who would be godly.[2]


DECEMBER 9

A PERSONAL LOVE EXPERIENCE

O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is.

—Psalm 63:1

They can change the expressions in the hymnals, but whenever men and women are lost in worship they will cry out, “O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee” (Psalm 63:1). Worship becomes a completely personal love experience between God and the worshiper. It was like that with David, with Isaiah, with Paul. It is like that with all whose desire has been to possess God.

This is the glad truth: God is my God.

Brother or sister, until you can say God and I, you cannot say us with any meaning. Until you have been able to meet God in loneliness of soul, just you and God—as if there were no one else in the world—you will never know what it is to love the other persons in the world.

In Canada, those who have written of the saintly Holy Anne said, “She talks to God as if there were nobody else but God and He had no other children but her.” That was not a selfish quality. She had found the value and delight of pouring her personal devotion and adoration at God’s feet. WHT089

May I know today that personal love experience with You, my God. I will seek You early, for You are my God. Amen. [3]


December 9

Parable of the Sower: Unresponsive Hearers

When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is the one on whom seed was sown beside the road.—Matt. 13:19

The hard-packed soil beside the road represents the unresponsive hearer who “does not understand” the gospel, solely because of his or her own hardheartedness. The person has continually resisted the gospel or anything else related to true spirituality because of an insensitive, impervious heart.

The Word lies on the surface of the unresponsive heart, exposed to attack by Satan. Such a hearer’s lack of repentance insulates him or her from Christ’s help and leaves them victim to assault by the enemy of the soul.

Such people remind us of the fools who hate wisdom and instruction (Prov. 1:7) and say there is no God (Ps. 14:1). They are often self-satisfied and self-righteous, and the gospel is simply veiled to them because “the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel” (2 Cor. 4:4).

Satan uses various means to snatch away the seed sown: false teachers who promote spiritual lies, fear of human opinion that opposes Christianity, pride that blinds people to their real needs, and all sorts of other sinful prejudices against the truth of God’s Word. All of these realities ought to prompt us toward prayer for and reaching out to the lost so that God may save some.

ASK YOURSELF
If lack of repentance is the key ingredient in shielding people from their need for Christ, we must continually guard ourselves from this hardened condition, even after being saved. Would this be a good time to deal directly with any unconfessed sin, turning away from it and back to the mercies of God?[4]


December 9 The Sustaining Power of Christ

“[Christ] upholds all things by the word of His power” (Heb. 1:3).

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Christ, by His almighty power, holds together all creation.

We base our entire lives on the constancy of physical laws. When something like an earthquake disrupts the normal condition or operation of things even a little, the consequences are often disastrous. Can you imagine what would happen if Jesus Christ relinquished His sustaining power over the laws of the universe, for it is He in whom “all things hold together” (Col. 1:17)? We would go out of existence, our atoms scattering throughout the galaxy.

If He suspended the laws of gravity only for a brief moment, we would lose all points of reference. If any of the physical laws varied slightly, we could not exist. Our food could turn to poison; we ourselves could drift out into space or get flooded by the ocean tides. Countless other horrible things could happen.

But the universe remains in balance because Jesus Christ sustains and monitors all its movements and interworkings. He maintains cohesion. He is not the deists’ “watchmaker” creator, who made the world, set it in motion, and has not bothered with it since. The reason the universe is a cosmos instead of chaos—an ordered and reliable system instead of an erratic and unpredictable muddle—is the upholding power of Jesus Christ.

The entire universe hangs on the arm of Jesus. His unsearchable wisdom and boundless power are manifested in governing the universe. And He upholds it all by “the word of His power.” The key to the Genesis creation is seen in two words: “God said.” God spoke, and it happened.

When I contemplate Christ’s power to uphold the universe, I’m drawn to the wonderful promise of Philippians 1:6—“I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” When Christ begins a work in your heart, He doesn’t end there. He continually sustains it until the day He will take you into God’s very presence. A life, like a universe, that is not sustained by Christ is chaos.

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Suggestions for Prayer:  Ask God to remind you of Christ’s sustaining power when you endure your next trial.

For Further Study: Read Job 38–39 for a greater appreciation of what Christ does to uphold the universe.[5]


DECEMBER 9

GIFTS AND GRACES

…gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will.

Hebrews 2:4

I go back often to Genesis 24 for the illustration and the figure in the Old Testament reminding us of the adornments of grace and beauty that will mark the believing Body of Christ. Abraham sent his trusted servant to his former homeland to select a bride for Isaac.

The adornment of Rebekah’s beauty consisted of jewels and the raiment that came as gifts of love from the bridegroom whom she had not yet seen.

It is a reminder of what God is doing in our midst right now. Abraham typifies God the Father; Isaac, our Lord Jesus Christ, the heavenly Bridegroom. The servant who went with the gifts into the far country to claim a bride for Isaac speaks well of the Holy Spirit, our Teacher and Comforter.

He gives us, one by one, the gifts and the graces of the Holy Spirit that will be our real beauty in His sight. Thus we are being prepared, and when we meet our coming Lord and King, our adornment will be our God-given graces!

Lord, it will be such an exciting day when You come for Your Bride, the Church. I pray that I will personally be ready to present myself to You, clean in body, mind and spirit.[6]


DECEMBER 9

SUPERNATURAL GRACE: GOD WORKS THE MIRACLE

…He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go to my Father.

JOHN 14:12

I don’t mind telling you that it is my earnest faith that all that is worthwhile in Christianity is a miracle!

The trappings and paraphernalia and outward dressings of Christianity are unnecessary—we could get along nicely without them.

But there is a series of miracles, throbbing and beating within the divine message of God, and within the hearts of those who believe truly—and that’s about all there is to the Christian faith.

When Peter wrote that God “according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a living hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,” he arrived at a major miracle of the New Testament.

Peter was witnessing about a major miracle, that is, being born again—begotten again! Supernatural grace has been the teaching of the Christian Church from Pentecost to the present hour.

It is sad that some men are being forced from their pulpits because they have insisted upon preaching the supernatural quality of the acts of God. We stand with them in the belief that pure religion is a continuing perpetuation of a major miracle, and we cannot settle for just the mental quality of things.

The new birth is the creating of a new man in the heart, where another man has been. It is the putting of a new man in the old man’s place, and we are born anew! It is a vital and unique work of God in human nature.[7]


[1] MacArthur, J. (1997). Strength for today. Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

[2] MacArthur, J. (2001). Truth for today : a daily touch of God’s grace (p. 370). Nashville, Tenn.: J. Countryman.

[3] Tozer, A. W., & Eggert, R. (2015). Tozer on the almighty god: a 365-day devotional. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

[4] MacArthur, J. (2008). Daily readings from the life of Christ (p. 352). Chicago: Moody Publishers.

[5] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1993). Drawing Near—Daily Readings for a Deeper Faith (p. 356). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

[6] Tozer, A. W. (2015). Mornings with tozer: daily devotional readings. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

[7] Tozer, A. W., & Smith, G. B. (2015). Evenings with tozer: daily devotional readings. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

December 9, 2016: Daily Quotation Collection

Living Twice.

That man lives twice who lives the first life well.

Robert Herrick.


Kindness.

Kindness is the golden chain by which society is bound together.

J. W. Goeth.


Society.

If we recall the rare hours when we encountered the best persons, we then found ourselves, and then first society seemed to exist.

R. W. Emerson.


Mind and Money.

It is the mind that makes us rich and happy, in what condition soever we are, and money signifies no more to it than it does to the gods.

Seneca.


Death is Death.

Console if you will, I can bear it; ‘Tis a well meant alms of breath, But not all the preaching since Adam Has made Death other than Death.

James Russell Lowell.


Worry.

They who live in a worry, invite death to hurry.

Anon.


Joy and Sorrow.

Joy and sorrow are next door neighbors.

Opitz.


Labor.

The gods sell everything good for labor.

Epicharmus.


Twins From Birth.

And twins, even from the birth, are misery and man.

Homer.


CHOICE QUOTATIONS IN  POETRY AND PROSE

(From the Master Minds of all Ages)

ARRANGED FOR DAILY USE BY THOMAS W. HANFORD (“ELMO”) copyright c. 1895

“Ten minutes each morning spent in the perusal of the page for the day will supply the mind with material for wise musings through all the day.”

“Great thoughts are valuable not only for the truth they contain, but for the truth they suggest. The thought that provokes thought is much more valuable than the thought that is only the echo of an accepted truth.”