February 3, 2017 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report (US•World•Christian)

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Feb. 3, 2017 |

BLOOMBERG

President Donald Trump will order a sweeping review of the Dodd-Frank Act rules enacted in response to the 2008 financial crisis, a White House official said, signing an executive action Friday designed to significantly scale back the regulatory system put in place in 2010.

An attack at Paris’s Louvre museum Friday ensured that terrorism and security will remain front and center of a roller coaster presidential election that has brought the populist National Front closer than ever to power in France.

Al-Qaeda has strengthened its power in Yemen, taking advantage of sectarian conflict in the Arab world’s poorest country, according to the International Crisis Group. Al-Qaeda “is stronger than it has ever been,” the Brussels-based group said.

Estonia, a nation of 1.3 million people that borders Russia and is home to NATO’s cyber-defense center, will host the exercise during its six-month presidency of the European Union, which starts July 1, Defense Minister Tsahkna said. The country is no stranger to electronic attacks, having significantly bolstered security measures after strikes on key websites during a spat with Russia.

Republicans in Congress began a process Thursday of rescinding a federal rule aimed at preventing people with serious mental-health problems from buying guns, one of the earliest targets in a long list of Obama administration regulations lawmakers plan to reverse.

U.S. workers have been getting a shrinking share of the American economic pie, and economists have been puzzled by the decline. A new paper says one factor is the rise of “superstar” companies that dominate their market sectors and don’t need a lot of workers to generate profits.

AP Top Stories

Declaring that religious freedom is “under threat,” President Donald Trump vowed Thursday to repeal a rarely enforced IRS rule that says pastors who endorse candidates from the pulpit risk losing their tax-exempt status. “I will get rid of and totally destroy the Johnson Amendment and allow our representatives of faith to speak freely and without fear of retribution.”

Republicans in Congress struggled on Thursday with their efforts to dismantle Obamacare, with conservatives urging haste while some lawmakers said the task had become more of a repair job than the repeal of the U.S. healthcare law promised by President Donald Trump’s administration.

A report in Defense News states China is making steady progress on its second aircraft carrier, the Shandong. Under construction near Shanghai, Shandong is set to be China’s first domestically produced aircraft carrier and the first to be combat-ready.

The University of California, Berkeley, canceled a speech by right-wing Internet troll Milo Yiannopoulos after thousands of students gathered in protest and a group of anti-fascist activists set off fireworks at the speech venue.

President Donald Trump is poised to impose new sanctions on multiple Iranian entities, seeking to ratchet up pressure on Tehran while crafting a broader strategy to counter what he sees as its destabilizing behavior.

Yemeni security officials said on Thursday that warships, which they believe to be American, have been firing cannons and rockets at al-Qaida militants in the country’s southern coastal areas. But the United States promptly denied the allegations.

The head of the Chicago Police Department said Wednesday that his officers are now using high-tech strategies and equipment to fight crime, an announcement that came as the city’s police released statistics showing no letup in the death toll that captured the nation’s attention last year and sparked a Twitter warning last week from President Donald Trump.

Space rocks appear to be taking aim at Earth. The fourth asteroid this year buzzed the Earth about midday Thursday, passing between the Earth and moon. Sunday’s visitor, which passed within 32,200 miles was just 19 feet wide, wasn’t spotted until a few hours before it flew past.

A California federal judge has issued a court order (temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction) barring the US government from preventing more than two dozen Yemenis with valid visas from flying to Los Angeles.

BBC

The Trump administration is imposing sanctions on Iran following its recent ballistic missile test. The US Treasury Department announced the measures against 13 people and a dozen companies on Friday.

Apple is to start making iPhones in the southern Indian state of Karnataka.

President Donald Trump is expected to take his first steps to scale back financial services regulations on Friday. He is due to sign an executive order to review the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial regulations, which some people on Wall Street say are overly-restrictive.

A former Royal Canadian Mint employee has been sentenced to 30 months in prison for stealing gold coins by concealing them in his rectum.

The US Defense Secretary James Mattis has said any use of nuclear weapons by North Korea would be met with an “effective and overwhelming” response. Mr Mattis spoke in South Korea, where he had been reaffirming US support, before flying to Tokyo.

Some supermarkets are rationing the number of iceberg lettuce and broccoli customers can buy – blaming poor growing conditions in southern Europe for a shortage in UK stores.

WND

In its last year in office, the Obama Administration showered at least some $9.2 billion on the United Nations and its sprawling array of organizations, according to a document recently posted on the State Department website.

Angered by the conversion of Muslims to Christian faith, as many as 90 Muslims broke into a Christian prayer meeting in a village in eastern Uganda, raped 15 women and kidnapped a pastor and eight other people, according to a Christian news source.


The Briefing 02-03-2017

Should we live with contradiction? Peter Singer’s immoral, incoherent worldview

“The writing is on the wall for people like me”: Disabled British lawmaker decries selective abortion

“Life unworthy of life”: Germany solemnly remembers the victims of Nazi eugenics

Crime and culpability: Secretary of Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels dies at 106

The post The Briefing 02-03-2017 appeared first on AlbertMohler.com.


February 3, 2017

CLIFF KINCAID — At the March for Life, Vice President Mike Pence said, “Life is winning through the steady advance of science that illuminates when life begins, more and more, every day.” White House Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway said, “Science and medicine have joined religion and morality in causing many Americans to rethink just how fragile and how triumphant human life truly is.”… (more)


February 2, 2017
JOAN SWIRSKY — A day or two before the inauguration of President Donald J. Trump on January 20, 2017, I watched a reporter interviewing five attractive, intelligent, articulate women from California, who were all making the long cross-country trip to the Women’s March on Washington on January 21st. Amazingly, not one woman was able to express a persuasive or even rational reason for the trip, but instead resorted to time-worn platitudes, bromides, and leftist talking points about “unity” and “solidarity” and “getting the message out.” Um…what message?… (more)

February 2, 2017

GEORGE WILL — With an asperity born of exasperation, Justice Antonin Scalia once wrote, “If you want aspirations, you can read the Declaration of Independence,” but “there is no such philosophizing in our Constitution,” which is “a practical and pragmatic charter of government.”… (more)


February 2, 2017

NEWSMAX — President Donald Trump’s nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court has “restored the faith of voters,” GOP political consultant Mary Matalin told Newsmax TV Wednesday…. (more)


February 2, 2017

NEWSMAX — Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly has set a goal on completing President Donald Trump’s Mexican border wall in two years, he told Fox News…. (more)


February 2, 2017
WASHINGTON EXAMINER — When the House Subcommittee on Government Operations held a hearing in April 2015 titled “The Worst Places to Work in the Federal Government,” an agency manager at the Department of Homeland Security was called in to testify…. (more)

February 2, 2017
GREG COROMBOS — The woman behind recent videos that decimate Planned Parenthood’s claim that it needs to receive taxpayer dollars to meet vital prenatal needs says congressional Republicans are poised to remove funding from the nation’s largest abortion provider and Democrats will be powerless to stop it…. (more)

February 2, 2017
ANDREW C. MCCARTHY — If the Left is going to twist every bit of Trump administration news into fiction, who is going to believe them when, inevitably, there actually is something worth raising hell about? The question is worth asking – – for about the tenth time this week . . . and it’s only Tuesday! – – in light of the fuss Democrats and their media friends are making over a discussion between just-fired acting attorney general Sally Yates and Senator Jeff Sessions, President Trump’s attorney-general nominee, at a 2015 Judiciary Committee hearing…. (more)

February 2, 2017
WASHINGTON EXAMINER — Republicans in Congress plan to introduce legislation Wednesday that would prohibit workers nationwide from being forced to support a union. The national right-to-work legislation likely would be a major blow to organized labor because it would allow millions of workers to opt out of union membership for the first time…. (more)

February 2, 2017
THE HILL — The House on Thursday struck down an Obama-era regulation that could block some recipients of disability benefits from buying guns. The House voted 235-180 to roll back a rule that required the Social Security Administration to report people who receive disability benefits and have a mental health condition to the FBI’s background check system. The database is used to determine eligibility for buying a firearm. Critics said the rule stripped Second Amendment rights from people who are not dangerously mentally ill, such as those who have eating disorders…. (more)

February 2, 2017
WASHINGTON EXAMINER — In one fell swoop, President Trump has a unique opportunity to show his concern for forgotten Americans, create jobs (especially for coal miners), and defend the rule of law, separation of powers, and the Constitution. In the process, he will rob President Obama of his sole surviving legacy, a legacy that bedevils rural people in perpetuity to the utter delight of environmental groups, one of which cosponsored the Women’s March…. (more)

February 1, 2017

BRYAN FISCHER — As we feared, President Trump has chosen sides in the battle between homosexuality and religious liberty. And he has chosen poorly. From The Hill (emphasis mine): “The White House said early Tuesday that President Trump will continue to enforce an Obama-era executive order protecting the rights of the LGBTQ community in the workplace.”… (more)


February 1, 2017

CLIFF KINCAID — Donald Trump’s adviser Stephen K. Bannon told the truth, but not the whole truth, when he described the media as the main opposition to President Trump. He neglected to mention academia as another important bastion for anti-Trump organizing and action…. (more)


February 1, 2017

WASHINGTON TIMES — President Trump on Tuesday nominated Judge Neil Gorsuch to the empty seat on the Supreme Court, kicking off the biggest test of his young administration with Democratic senators already itching for a fight. Judge Gorsuch is a favorite of conservatives, who say his legal mind and clear writing are fitting for someone picked to fill the seat of the late Justice Antonin Scalia. The president dubbed him “the very best judge in the country.”… (more)


February 1, 2017
NATIONAL REVIEW — On the Saturday afternoon last February when he received word of Justice Scalia’s death, Neil M. Gorsuch “immediately lost [his] breath” and “couldn’t see . . . for the tears.”… (more)

February 1, 2017

NEWSMAX — Texas Sen. Ted Cruz called the pick of Judge Neil Gorsuch a “home run,” telling CNN just after President Donald Trump made the announcement in the White House East Room, the nomination was the “most important decision President Trump has made in the first two weeks serving in office.”… (more)


February 1, 2017

BYRON YORK — From Washington State to Washington DC, Democrats across the country are stepping up what some call “The Resistance” to President Trump, moving across political, legal, bureaucratic, legislative, and civil disobedience fronts to frustrate the newly elected president’s agenda…. (more)


February 1, 2017
CHARLES HURT — Look, global elites, nobody said self-governance would be easy. Or pretty. But it is what it is. Get over it. The full-bore freak-out hysteria over President Trump’s executive order directed at finally getting a grip on who exactly is coming into the United States from the Middle East has been amusing…. (more)

February 1, 2017

ANDREW C. MCCARTHY — President Trump’s temporary ban on entry into the U.S. by various categories of aliens has caused a firestorm. That owes in part to the rash implementation of perfectly legal restrictions, but the hysteria is out of proportion to the minimal harm actually done…. (more)


January 31, 2017
WESLEY PRUDEN — Once more, with feeling. There’s a president with the proper appreciation of “the special relationship” between the United States and Great Britain. Winston Churchill is back in the Oval Office, even if it’s only his head on a pedestal. Donald Trump and Theresa May struck it off better than expected. The Donald even took her for a stroll, holding her hand. A British journalist reminded the president not to try that with the queen when he goes to London for a state visit in the spring. The queen is look, don’t touch…. (more)

January 31, 2017

NEWSMAX — Heavy artillery and rockets hit residential areas in eastern Ukraine on Tuesday amid a new outburst of fighting between government troops and Russia-backed separatist rebels, killing at least eight people and injuring dozens…. (more)


January 31, 2017
ALAN KEYES — Since the Supreme Court’s blatantly anti-constitutional decision purporting to force “gay marriage” on all the United States, the GOP’s elitist faction leaders have repeatedly signaled their intention to accept the decisions as the “law of the land.”… (more)

January 31, 2017

USA TODAY — The Boy Scouts of America announced Monday that, effective immediately, it will accept and register transgender youth into its organization. The move marks a reversal of a policy in place for a century and is effective for the Boy Scouts and the Cub Scouts. The organization vowed to recognize the gender a youngster lists on an application…. (more)


January 30, 2017

ROBERT KNIGHT — As any reporter can tell you, it’s far more fun to cover zany people and events than those exuding decency and restraint. The news business, like much of the entertainment media, thrives on mayhem. In Disney’s animated classic “Fantasia,” the spectacular deviltry of “A Night on Bald Mountain” is followed by a peaceful march of candle-bearing believers after the morning sun dispatches the satanic hordes…. (more)


January 30, 2017

WASHINGTON TIMES — Despite confusion at airports and a judicial spanking, the White House said Sunday that President Trump’s “extreme vetting” executive order remains in effect and is working as the administration had hoped, halting almost all travelers from seven majority-Muslim countries with histories of terrorism…. (more)


Top News – 2/3/2017

NASA Scientist Studies Whether Solar Storms Cause Animal Beachings
“Theories as to the cause include magnetic anomalies and meteorological events, such as extreme tides during a new moon and coastal storms, which are thought to disorient the animals. It has been speculated that due to the possible magnetic-field sensing used by these animals to navigate, magnetic anomalies could be at least partially responsible.” Indeed, magnetic anomalies caused when the sun’s corona ejects gigantic bubbles of charged particles out into the solar system can cause problems for Earth-orbiting satellites and power grids when they slam into Earth’s protective magnetosphere. It’s possible they could affect animals, as well,

Iranian woman to be blinded in ‘eye-for-an-eye’ retribution punishment
An Iranian woman is to be blinded in one eye as punishment for an acid attack that left her victim without sight, the country’s Supreme Court has ruled, local Tasnim agency has reported, as cited by Reuters. The unidentified convicted woman allegedly threw acid in the face of her victim, Sima, in the city of Dehdasht two years ago.  “The sentence to blindness in one eye, payment of blood money [compensation], and seven years [of] imprisonment have been confirmed by the highest court,”

Trump: Iran is playing with fire
“Iran is playing with fire – they don’t appreciate how “kind” [sic] President Obama was to them. Not me!” Trump tweeted.

The true face of liberalism
I like to think I have a decent moral compass. I take no pleasure in disagreeing with the trend. A person is terrified to say he is not liberal. Universities and schools raised us to breathe the notion that non-liberals are racist, backwards, white, old, men, and bigots

Who Knew There Were So Many Homophobic, Racist Xenophobes at Berkeley
Hundreds of liberals rioted at the University of California Berkeley Wednesday night — burning stores, throwing Molotov cocktails and clashing with police.  The rampaging mob forced the university to shut down an event featuring gay conservative firebrand and Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos.  “One thing we do know for sure: the Left is absolutely terrified of free speech and will do literally anything to shut it down,” he wrote on Facebook.

Central Italy shakes in new 4.4 magnitude earthquake
According to Italy’s geology experts, Ingv, the first quake at 4:47am measured a magnitude of 4, and a second, bigger tremblor at 5:10am measured 4.4.  The quake had its epicentre close to Monte Cavallo in the Macerata region, 12km away from Preci, Perugia.


Attacker at Paris’ Louvre cried out ‘Allahu Akbar,’ one man wounded

A French soldier on Friday shot and wounded a man armed with a knife after he tried to enter the Louvre museum in central Paris carrying a suitcase, police sources said. The individual cried out “Allahu Akbar” and police believe he wanted to carry out a terrorist attack, Michel Cadot, the head of the French capital’s police force, said on Friday.

Trump warns Israel: Stop announcing new settlements
The White House warned Israel on Thursday to cease settlement announcements that are “unilateral” and “undermining” of President Donald Trump’s effort to forge Middle East peace, a senior administration official told The Jerusalem Post. For the first time, the administration confirmed that Trump is committed to a comprehensive two-state solution to the Israeli- Palestinian conflict negotiated between the parties.

Ukrainian Jewish leader says community in danger of extinction
The future of Ukraine’s Jewish community “doesn’t look very bright” and is in danger of disappearing altogether, according to one of its leaders, who ended a four-day visit to Israel on Thursday. Eduard Dolinsky, executive director of the Kiev-based Ukrainian Jewish Committee, painted a bleak picture of a a struggling and scattered community to The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday afternoon.

Iran mocks Trump in response to White House threat
Iran responded on Thursday to a warning from the Trump administration over its continued ballistic missile testing by mocking the new US president as a ranting extremist that no one takes seriously. A senior adviser to Iran’s supreme leader said the Islamic Republic would proceed “vigorously” with its missile program, despite the threat from US National Security Adviser Michael Flynn that Iran was officially being put “on notice” over its recent activities.

Mattis warns North Korea of ‘overwhelming’ response to nuclear use
The US Defence Secretary James Mattis has said any use of nuclear weapons by North Korea would be met with an “effective and overwhelming” response. Mr Mattis spoke in South Korea, where he had been reaffirming US support, before flying to Tokyo. He also reconfirmed plans to deploy a US missile defence system in South Korea later this year.

Migrant crisis: EU summit seeks action plan with Libya
European Union leaders are meeting in Malta to discuss how to stem the influx of migrants from North Africa. Boosting the Libyan coastguard and tackling people smugglers are the main proposals. Hundreds of thousands of migrants try to reach Europe each year. Many of them drown while crossing the Mediterranean.

Illegals Urged to ‘Fight back’ Against Immigration Officials
An Austin, Texas, city council member is encouraging illegal immigrants not to comply with federal immigration officials. Addressing concerns over “potential raids of our communities by Immigration and Customs Enforcement” which are rumored to occur this week, district four city council representative Gregorio Casar released an infographic informing illegal aliens how to defy federal law enforcement.

Trump says ‘nothing off the table’ on Iran, as Republicans plan action
President Donald Trump said on Thursday that “nothing is off the table” in dealing with Iran following its test launch of a ballistic missile, and his fellow Republicans in Congress said they would back him up with new sanctions. Trump comment was in response to a question about whether he would consider military options to respond to Tehran, a day after his national security adviser, Michael Flynn, put Iran “on notice.”

North Korea sacks head of secret police amid signs of ‘crack in elite’
North Korea has dismissed its minister of state security, a key aide to the reclusive state’s young leader, Kim Jong Un, South Korea said on Friday, in what a high-profile defector said would be another sign of a “crack in the elite” in Pyongyang if true. Kim Won Hong was removed from office as head of the feared “bowibu”, or secret police, in mid-January apparently on charges of corruption, abuse of power and human rights abuses…

Japan readies package for Trump to help create 700,000 U.S. jobs
Japan is putting together a package it says could generate 700,000 U.S. jobs and help create a $450-billion market, to present to U.S. President Donald Trump next week, government sources familiar with the plans said. The five-part package, to be unveiled when Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visits Trump on Feb. 10 in Washington, envisage investments in infrastructure projects such as high-speed trains and cybersecurity…

Ceasefire violations in Ukraine still too high despite lull in fighting: Germany
The German Foreign Ministry said on Friday that there had been a lull in fighting in eastern Ukraine in recent “hours” but ceasefire breaches were still happening too often. “In the last couple of hours we have seen a decline in military activities there but I want to say clearly that the number of ceasefire violations remains far too high,” a spokesman for the Foreign Ministry said.

Trump vows to end prohibition on church political activity
President Donald Trump on Thursday vowed to free churches and other tax-exempt institutions of a 1954 U.S. law banning political activity, drawing fire from critics who accused him of rewarding his evangelical Christian supporters and turning houses of worship into political machines. As Trump used a prayer breakfast to take aim at a long-standing statutory barrier between politics and religion called the Johnson Amendment…

Wyoming House passes bill that does away with gun-free zones in schools
On Wednesday, the Wyoming House of Representatives passed House Bill 194 in a landslide vote of 46-14. The nature of the bill, known as “The School Safety and Security Act,” is such that it would allow school districts decide whether or not they would allow their employees to carry on school grounds, provided they have a concealed carry permit.

Trump warns Israel that new settlements ‘may not help’ achieve Middle East peace
The White House on Thursday gently warned Israel that new or expanded settlements in the West Bank “may not be helpful” in achieving a Middle East peace, while insisting it has no “official position on settlement activity.

Here Comes China’s First Home-Built Aircraft Carrier
A report in Defense News states China is making steady progress on its second aircraft carrier, the Shandong. Under construction near Shanghai, Shandong is set to be China’s first domestically produced aircraft carrier and the first to be combat-ready.

US planning additional sanctions on Iran following missile test
The White House is expected to impose additional sanctions on Iranian entities under existing executive orders that predate President Donald Trump, according to sources familiar with the move.

Mattis warns NKorea against any attack on US or its allies
In an explicit warning to North Korea, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Friday said any use of nuclear weapons by the North on the United States or its allies would be met with what he called an “effective and overwhelming” response.

Firestorm Coming: Draft Of Trump Executive Order May Deny Services To Gay, Transgender People
A draft executive order circulating the Trump administration would dramatically expand legal protections for individuals, organizations and employers on grounds of religious beliefs, and would potentially allow the denial of services to gay and transgender people, unleashing a firestorm of protests across the nation.

Berkeley Blowback: Milo Book Sales Soar 12,740% Overnight
Following the violent anti-free-speech protests in Berkeley, California last night – sparked by cal’s special snowflakes hurt feelings at the potential words that would come out of Milo Yiannopoulos’ mouth during a sold-out event – it appears America’s curiousity has been piqued.


Top Headlines – 2/3/2017

  • Trump Plans to Undo Dodd-Frank, Fiduciary Rule (Read More)
  •  CEOs to meet with Trump amid tensions (Read More)
  • Trump’s CEO Brain Trust Meets Amid Widening Rifts (Read More)
  • Business coalition supports border tax (Read More)
  • Nordstrom winds down relationship with Ivanka Trump brand (Read More)
  • Tillerson Calms Foreign Allies’ Nerves on First Day as Diplomat (Read More)
  • Trump’s Bluntness Unsettles World Leaders (Read More)
  • The One Russian Linking Putin, Erdogan and Trump (Read More)
  • Bank of Japan Whipsaws Markets in Tussle Over Yield Control (Read More)
  • China Tightens Monetary Policy by Raising Money Market Rates (Read More)
  • U.K. Services Growth Cools as Costs Dominate Firms’ Concerns (Read More)
  • Spain’s Banco Popular posts 3.5 bln euros loss on property charges (Read More)
  • Amazon Projects Spending That Concerns Investors (Read More)
  • Italy’s Renzi signals willingness to ditch push for early vote (Read More)
  • Toronto Home Prices Jump 22% as Buyers Contend With Tight Supply (Read More)
  • May Seeks to Ride Brexit Wave Targeting Historic By-Election Win (Read More)
  • ‘Superstar’ Companies Are Eating Into Workers’ Wealth, Study Finds (Read More)
  • Vanity Fair, New Yorker back out of White House Correspondents’ Association events (Read More)
  • Billionaire Magnier Said to Purchase $56 Million U.K. Estate (Read More)
  • Mexico Has Its Own Fiery Populist. Trump May Put Him in Power (Read More)
  • Trump White House Set to Impose Fresh Sanctions on Iran (Read More)
  • Senate advances DeVos’s nomination, setting her up for final vote (Read More)
  • State Lawmakers Are Cracking Down on Protesters (Read More)
  • Snap IPO Will Mint Fortunes for Founders, Two Big Investors (Read More)

Netanyahu to Amona residents: We share your ‘great pain’

Netanyahu announces plans for first new West Bank settlement in 25 years

Theresa May to confront Benjamin Netanyahu about Israeli settlements

Trump warns Israel that new settlements ‘may not help’ achieve Middle East peace

Israel hits back at US: Settlement expansion is not the problem

Danon: US statement on settlements is no Trump U-turn

On Israel-Palestine, Trump might end up another George W. Bush

Knesset speaker pushes US counterpart Ryan on embassy move

Jordan’s King warns Trump against embassy move

Trump vows to stop IS, calls for united front against ‘enemies’

Jewish student at Wisconsin college receives note: ‘You should be gassed’

Attack at the Louvre: Assailant wielding machete, shouting ‘Allahu akbar’ stopped by soldier, police say

Yemen al-Qaeda: US says raid was ‘very thought-out process’

Iran tested nuclear-capable cruise missile: German newspaper

US setting up a confrontational approach with Iran

Iran rejects Trump’s ‘baseless, provocative’ missile warning

Khamenei ally says useless for U.S. to threaten Iran over missile test: Fars

Trump says ‘nothing is off the table’ for response to Iran

U.S. to issue new Iran sanctions, opening shot in get-tough strategy: sources

US said set to sanction 25 Iranian entities after missile test

Netanyahu welcomes US warning to Iran on ballistic missile tests

Angela Merkel urges Turkey to ensure freedom of expression ahead of referendum giving President Erdogan greater power

Erdogan tells off Merkel for using phrase ‘Islamist terrorism’

Britain could carry out cyber attacks to defend itself against Russia, suggests Sir Michael Fallon

US Condemns Russia’s ‘Aggressive Actions’ in Eastern Ukraine

Nikki Haley blames Russia for new violence in eastern Ukraine amid speculation over Donald Trump’s intentions towards Moscow

Here Comes China’s First Home-Built Aircraft Carrier

Donald Trump’s defence secretary ‘Mad Dog’ Mattis warns North Korea of ‘effective and overwhelming’ response to nuclear attack

Mattis’ North Korea nuclear weapons warning: How many nukes are in the world and what could they destroy?

McCain calls Australian ambassador to express support after Trump exchange

Trump says his travel ban needed to ensure U.S. religious freedom

Trump vows to protect religious liberty at National Prayer Breakfast

Donald Trump Signals He’ll Push to Expand Religious Rights – Draft executive order would expand religious protections, potentially allowing denial of services to gays

Microsoft Leads Pushback Against Trump Immigration Order

Senate report compares Israeli, US-Mexico barriers

Paul Ryan: Trump Will Have the Funding to Build Border Wall

Obama’s last money shower for the UN: some $9.2 billion

US congress scraps Obama rules on background checks for gun ownership

Trump and Pence Prayed with Gorsuch before His Nomination

Schumer And Leadership Team Refuse To Meet With Gorsuch

‘Can she eat more kale?’ Hordes of liberals want reassurance Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s health is good

Federal workers turn to encryption to thwart Trump

Dems Wonder If Perpetual Outrage Hurting Party

Challenge for Super Bowl Commercials: Not Taking Sides, Politically

The Fed that cried wolf: Rates forecast in doubt

Under Trump, astronauts might chart a new path to a familiar place: The moon

January 2017 most active for earthquakes in Mexico in last 10 years

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Mendoza, Argentina

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 25,000ft

Sheveluch volcano on Kamchatka, Russia erupts to 20,000ft

Turrialba volcano in Costa Rica erupts to 15,000ft

Sinabung volcano in Indonesia erupts to 12,000ft

Supermarkets ration vegetables as extreme weather hits supplies – and shortage will last until April

Workers race to clean India Chennai oil spill

Dogs on Marijuana: Not Cool

Trump’s vaccine views are at odds with those of most Americans, study says

Transgender teenager sues former school for discrimination after they refused to let him wear boy’s uniform

Number of alleged child sex offences committed by other children almost doubles

Lawsuit: Lake Zurich High hazing included forced sex acts

Spanish nun sparks outrage with suggestion that Virgin Mary may have had sex

Gary DeMar – The Charge of Replacement Theology is a Cover for Fuzzy Theology

Paula White Tabbed to be Chairman of Trumps Evangelical Council

Flashing Broken Stove Clock Confirms “Rapture Powder” Dream?

There’s A Wolf In the House: 18 Signs of Apostasy

Trump Again Promises Repeal Of Johnson Amendment At Prayer Breakfast

Leah Remini Embracing Catholicism After Scientology

Houston-area students give Nazi salutes while yelling ‘Heil Hitler’

Posted: 03 Feb 2017 09:20 AM PST

A Houston-area school district is investigating a series of photos that appear to show several of its high school students giving Nazi salutes. KPRC-TV reports…

WAR DRUMS: Trump Warns ‘Iran Is Playing with Fire’

Posted: 03 Feb 2017 09:10 AM PST

The Trump administration imposed sanctions against 13 people and a dozen companies — the first punishment since the administration put Iran “on notice” after the…
Trump: ‘As Long as We Have God, We Are Never, Ever Alone’

Posted: 03 Feb 2017 09:06 AM PST

The 45th president of the United States took part in his first-ever National Prayer Breakfast. “Today we continue a tradition begun by President Eisenhower some…
U.S. Imposes New Sanctions on Iran in Wake of Missile Tests

Posted: 03 Feb 2017 09:01 AM PST

The U.S. imposed fresh sanctions on Iran as President Donald Trump seeks to punish Tehran for its ballistic missile program after warning that the Islamic…
DEVELOPING: Navy destroyer sent to patrol amid Iran tensions…

Posted: 03 Feb 2017 08:58 AM PST

The United States has moved a Navy destroyer to off the coast of Yemen to protect waterways from Houthi militia aligned with Iran, two U.S….

Machete-wielding man attacks French Soldiers at the Louvre museum

Posted: 03 Feb 2017 08:55 AM PST

A terror probe has been launched in Paris after a machete-wielding man was shot after trying to attack four soldiers outside the Louvre. The suspect…

More than 3,700 dead birds suddenly drop from the sky in Sacramento

Posted: 02 Feb 2017 08:10 PM PST

Wildlife specialists have spent the last three days picking up more than 3,700 dead bird carcasses from the shore in the Yolo Bypass, California. Laurence…
The Supernatural Event That Happened at the Capitol

Posted: 02 Feb 2017 08:03 PM PST

Minister Billye Brim says a supernatural event occurred as she and other pro-Israel advocates gathered in the Capitol to lobby on behalf of the nation….
Global epidemic of Blindness’ from Computer Screens on the horizon

Posted: 02 Feb 2017 07:56 PM PST

Experts warn we face a global epidemic of blindness if we continue to spend hours you spend staring at a screen. The high energy light…
Miami orders jails to comply with ‘sanctuary’ crackdown…

Posted: 02 Feb 2017 07:46 PM PST

Fearing a loss of millions of dollars for defying immigration authorities, Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez on Thursday ordered county jails to comply with federal immigration…
UN ambassador Nikki Haley condemns Russian aggression…

Posted: 02 Feb 2017 07:43 PM PST

The new US ambassador to the United Nations used her inaugural statement to the international body to condemn Russian aggression in Ukraine. “I consider it…
Trump Warns Israel To Stop Announcing New Settlements!

Posted: 02 Feb 2017 07:38 PM PST

The White House warned Israel on Thursday – in a surprising statement – to cease settlement announcements that are “unilateral” and “undermining” of President Donald…
North Korea Warned That US would have ‘effective and overwhelming’ response to nuke attack

Posted: 02 Feb 2017 07:33 PM PST

In an explicit warning to North Korea, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Friday said any use of nuclear weapons by the North on the…
Trump Warns ‘Nothing off the table’ in response to Iran missile test

Posted: 02 Feb 2017 06:43 PM PST

US President Donald Trump said that “nothing is off the table,” when it came to a response to Iran’s controversial test this week of a…
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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?


A Gospel Presentation

God is Holy

The Bible teaches that the entire universe was created by God. And that God who has created everything has spoken to humanity in the Bible. And the Bible tells us that a fundamental characteristic of God is that He is holy. 1 John 1:5 says, “God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.” That’s a way of saying that He’s entirely pure. God’s character is one of perfect moral uprightness. He is the essence of all that is good—so much so that, as the verse says, He can have absolutely no fellowship with “darkness”—no fellowship with that which is not perfectly holy, righteous, and pure.

God’s righteous character was expressed in the law He gave to Moses and the Israelites. You’ve heard of the Ten Commandments. They summarized the perfection of God’s character. These laws were directives for how people who were in a proper relationship with God must act.

We are Sinful

The problem is: all of us are sinful. We have all broken God’s law. All humanity has “gone astray like sheep, and each one of us has turned to his own way” (Isaiah 53:6). We’ve tried to live our lives without God, according to our own standards, in our own ways. Whether we’re drug addicts and murderers, or white collar, well-to-do, upstanding citizens, we do what we do because we want to do it, with no consideration for God and what He would have us to do. The Bible calls that sin. It is the missing of the mark, the falling short of God’s standard of righteousness.

And in your heart of hearts you know you’re a sinner. I don’t know anyone who would say that they are perfect, even by their own standards. Ecclesiastes 7:20 says, “There is not a righteous man on earth who continually does good and who never sins.” And if God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all, then in order to have fellowship with Him, we’d need to be perfectly holy like Him. But we’re not. Romans 3:23 says, “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” We are stained by the “darkness” of our sin. And this is a problem, because if darkness can’t dwell with light, and we’re darkness and God is light, we’re cut off from a relationship with Him. We become absolutely incapable of doing the very thing we were created and designed to do: to enjoy a relationship with our Creator.

There is a Penalty for Sin

But it’s not just that we and God can’t be friends. There’s a penalty to be paid for sin. The Bible tells us that that penalty is death, Romans 6:23: “The wages of sin is death.” But the death that Paul talks about there isn’t just physical death. It’s not like we pay for our sins by going out of existence. The death talked about in that verse is a spiritual death. This is hell: eternal conscious torment. Jesus Himself calls it “a furnace of fire,” where there will be “weeping and gnashing of teeth” (Matthew 13:50).

The idea of hell grates against the sensibilities of modern people, because nobody thinks they’re really bad enough to deserve something like eternal torment. They might admit that they’re not the greatest of people, but surely they don’t deserve that. But their reasoning is skewed. The punishment for sin isn’t merely measured by the sin itself. In other words, while there are qualitative differences in the experience of divine punishment, murder, lust, and lying all receive the sentence of an eternity in hell. That’s because punishment for sin is measured by the One sinned against. All sin is fundamentally a sin against God, and He is infinitely holy. Therefore, sin against an infinitely holy God demands an infinite punishment. That’s why the punishment is so serious: because God is actually that righteous.

And so the bad news is that we’re sinful, separated from God, and doomed to spend eternity in hell. There’s nothing we can do about it. We can’t simply tell God we’re sorry and we won’t do it again. What would you say about a judge who let a guilty, convicted criminal go free because he was sorry and said he wouldn’t do it again? You’d call him an unjust judge. But God is a perfectly just, perfectly righteous Judge. God’s justice demands that sin be punished, and the only payment is eternal spiritual death.

God Became Man

But the Good News is: God saw the miserable condition of humanity, and took pity on us. He knew that there was no way we could ever earn our way back to Him. We could never pay for our sins. But just when man was absolutely hopeless, when we were all doomed to spend eternity in hell with no way to pay our penalty, God the Father sent His Son to the earth on a mission. He was miraculously born to a virgin. The Bible says that the Holy Spirit miraculously conceived Jesus in Mary’s womb. And so being conceived by the Holy Spirit, Jesus was God. And being born to a human being, He was human. This is the greatest mystery in the universe. As finite human beings, we can’t entirely wrap our minds around this, but it’s true: Jesus was fully God and fully man.

He lived for 33 years on the earth. He grew up just like every other child. He became a carpenter like Joseph, His earthly father. The great difference, though, between Jesus and every other human being, was that He never sinned. Never once did He ever break God’s law. He always loved God with all His heart, soul, mind, and strength in everything He did. He never sought satisfaction outside of the Father Himself. He never disobeyed His parents, He was never selfish, He never spoke sinful words. In a word, He lived the life that you and I should have lived, but failed to live. He lived a life totally worthy of God, a life that was purely “Light,” like we said before, with no darkness at all.

Jesus Paid the Penalty

And because He was perfectly righteous, He was fit to be the substitute for sinners. The Bible records for us that the Jews plotted to kill Jesus because He preached a message that was very different to the religious establishment of His day. It was against the Jewish law to put people to death, so they sought help from the Romans, who were the governing body in Israel. Because the governor, Pontius Pilate, feared that the people would riot if he didn’t give them what they wanted, he agreed to crucify Jesus.

At the same time, Scripture also tells us that God sent His Son to die this way. It was all part of God’s plan. God used the sinful desires of the Jews and the Romans to accomplish something for His own good purpose. On the cross, Jesus suffered for sins. But He didn’t suffer for His own sins. He had no sins. He lived an entirely perfect life. No, on the cross, God “caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him.”

The verse right before that, Isaiah 53:5, says, “He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, and by His scourging we are healed.” What was happening on the cross was: God was carrying out the punishment against my sins—i.e., the pouring out of His wrath—on His innocent Son. Jesus voluntarily laid down His life in order to pay the penalty for sins. On the cross, God treated Jesus if He lived my life. And because I believe in Him, He treats me as if I lived Jesus’ life. See, because God is perfectly righteous, the only way to get to heaven is to be perfectly righteous. But because Jesus was perfectly righteous, and traded places with me on the cross, the perfect righteousness I need to go to heaven is His righteousness applied to my account.

After Jesus died, God miraculously raised Him from the dead three days later in order to show that He was satisfied with His sacrifice. Jesus was dead, but then He came back to life! It was a miracle. The Bible says God did this to “furnish proof to all men” that this message is true (Acts 17:30-31).


Law or Gospel — Which comes first?

Sometimes in life, the question is posed to us, “Which do you want first — the bad news or the good news?”

In response to this question, some choose to hear the good news first. It appears they desire to be thoroughly overwhelmed with the positive before getting their dose of the negative.

Others choose differently. They would rather hear the bad news first, get it out of the way, and put behind them their wonder and worry. Then, after processing the ramifications of the bad news, they hope to soothe the pain an end the conversation on a good note with positive vibes.

Well, Scripture does not offer us options. The Bible makes the choice for us, and it chooses to present the negative before the positive. The Bible declares bad news before declaring good news. It first presents the holy, wise, beneficial and condemning Law, then it publishes the “good tidings of great joy” or the Gospel. (Is. 60:1-2)

Understanding God’s Law

God’s Law was first presented in the opening chapters of Genesis. Some of it was stated; all of it was written upon man’s heart. Adam and Eve were to be entirely holy and obedient. They were to worship God with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength, all the time. Whether they ate, or drank, or whatsoever they did, they were do to it all for the glory of God. As image-bearers, they were to keep up God’s image. As men and women created in his likeness, they were to be like God. Vocationally, they were to enjoy and steward the garden and all God’s creatures. Relationally, they were to love one another and populate the planet. Ceremonially, they were to enjoy and glorify the Lord by walking with him in the cool of the day and never eating from the forbidden tree. These were some of their obligations, and as long as they performed perfectly they were guaranteed life in the family and kingdom of God.

However, things soon went from glorious to ghastly. Outside of them, they experienced the testing of God and the temptation of Satan. Within them they chose to question God’s truth, wisdom, and affection. Then, drawn away by their own lusts and enticed, they followed their internal sinful inclinations and externally ate of the forbidden fruit. Therefore, the holy, wise, and beneficial Law became a harsh taskmaster. It showed them the standard, showed them their guilt, and plagued their consciences. It encouraged them to hide, fear, and religiously self-medicate. It declared them wicked, separated from God, at enmity with God, and deserving of death, and it promised this for both them and their children. Yes, the Law of God promised to give them that which they deserved. It promised to pay them based upon performance, and this proved to be very, very bad news.

Understanding God’s Gospel

God, through the Law declared to Adam and Eve who they were, what they had done, and what they had justly earned — condemnation. Then God mercifully, graciously, and lovingly went to work. He performed on their behalf and promised them an eternity of undeserved blessings:

He predetermined to love his enemies.
He sought out his enemies while they hid from him in fear.
He called to the man and woman who vainly had self-medicated themselves.
He promised to rescue them and their children; they would be removed from Satan’s family.
He promised to do so by means of a special Son – one to come who would be fiercely bitten yet ultimately victorious.
He promised to damn the Evil One.
He then covered or clothed Adam and Eve by means of his ceremonial sacrifice.
He perfectly performed for and made promises to them who had performed so wickedly for him.
Friends, are we seeing the difference? The Law presents our duty to perfectly perform, and it only results in bad news. For there is none who keep all the Law, all the time, both internally and externally. However, the Gospel is not like the Law. The Gospel presents not our duty to perform for God, but it presents God’s performance and promise for us. Through the Law we lose our credentials to be a part of God’s family and enjoy his kingdom. Through the Gospel we gain credentials that cannot be earned or lost.

A Great Illustration

Perhaps nowhere is the distinction better seen between Law and Gospel than on Calvary’s cross. On that day, the Law had placed a criminal beside Jesus. There he was guilty, vile, dying, hopeless, and still hurling insults at the Son of God. He was getting that which he earned and deserved. He was being treated justly and fairly. His payment was based upon his performance, and he had hell to pay. The Law had nothing good to say to the thief on the cross. But then God went to work; Jesus granted the Law-breaking criminal complete pardon, intimate communion, and never-ending paradise. These blessings were not based upon any labors of his own, but only based upon the performance and promise of God. These blessings were not earned; they were a gift. A divine swap occurred. Jesus (The Law Keeping Man) received that which he did not deserve so that the thief (The Law Breaking Man) might also receive that which he did not deserve. And this is a fantastic picture of the Gospel. Communion with God that was lost by man seeking to keep the Law, was granted to man as a gift of God.

Responding to the Gospel

Therefore, how should we respond to the Gospel? While believing in divine sovereignty, what is our human responsibility?

Let us make the Gospel our Gospel. Along with the Apostle Paul let us call it “mine.” The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit offer this gift to you. They command you to receive it and enjoy it. If you find yourself with faith, willing to repent and receive, call out to Jesus in prayer right now. Call Jesus, “My Jesus.” Call Jesus’ righteousness, “My Righteousness.” Call Jesus’ Gospel, “My Gospel.” (Rom. 2:16; 2 Tim. 2:8) Draw near to God and he will draw near to you. As a matter of fact, if you draw near to God, it is only because he has already been drawing nearer to you.

Let us not water down the Gospel. This is always our tendency, to add human works to the sufficient work of Jesus Christ. Friends, re-read the letter to the Galatians. If we must perform, it is not Gospel. If we must labor, it is not Gospel. If it involves our works, it is not Gospel. If it is conditioned upon us in anyway, it is not Gospel. If it is a contract, it is not Gospel. If it can be lost, it is not Gospel. The Gospel represents the unilateral work of God on behalf of men. The Law ought never be divorced from the Gospel, but it must never be confused either.

Let us celebrate the Gospel. William Tyndall wrote of the Gospel, “It makes a man’s heart glad, and makes him sing, dance, and leap for joy.” It is the best of news. It means we can sabbath. It means we can boldly approach the throne of grace with confidence. It means we are seen as Christlike image-bearers. Give God the celebratory praise he deserves. He has labored perfectly on your behalf, give him reverent and radical praise and worship.

Let us not be ashamed of the Gospel. (Rom.1:16) Paul wrote, “Woe if I do not preach the Gospel. (1 Cor. 9:16) He wrote, “How beautiful are the feet of those who spread the Good News.” Friends, just as Adam and Eve were to physically reproduce, we are to spiritually reproduce around the world. This is our mission. This is our great mission. This is our Great Commission. Let us be humble, for we cannot make someone believe. Let us be zealous, for God has a tendency to honor those who labor hard. And let us become flexibly relevant in order to better spread the Gospel. (1 Cor. 9:22-23) As Gospel-lovers and Gospel-beneficiants, let us do that which is Lawful and bring in the Gospel-harvest.

Then, let us live Lawfully in accordance with the Gospel. Now that we have been saved from having to perform, let us perform. Yes, with Gospel-eyes, let us look at the Law and enjoy practicing that which is holy, wise, beneficial, and worshipful. Living in the power of the Gospel, let us enjoy becoming more and more like Jesus — the Author and Finisher of our Faith. And when we look at the Law, let us not get frustrated and despondent. Instead, let us glory in the Law, for there is the description of who we are in Christ today, and it also shows us all we will be in glory tomorrow when our old flesh is finally exterminated.

Bottom line, the Law shows us how to perform for God, but the Gospel shows us how God performs for us. This is radical. This is crazy. This is beautiful. This is truth.


Our Response

And now, God promises that…

  • if you acknowledge that you are a sinner—that you have broken His law,
  • and if you admit that there is no way that you could earn His favor and His forgiveness,
  • and if you purpose to turn away from your life of sin and commit your life to Him,
  • and if you trust in Jesus’ righteousness alone for your acceptance before this holy God,

…then He will have treated Jesus as if He lived your life, and will treat you as if you lived Jesus’ life. You will be saved from the penalty of your sin, and will be able to enjoy fellowship with God forever in heaven, and even fellowship with Him starting now.

In other words, if you believe that you’re a sinner and deserve God’s punishment because of your sin, but you also believe that God sent Jesus to endure that punishment in your place, and that His sacrifice is the only way you can be forgiven, then God promises that He will forgive you and you will be saved. You’ll know the God who created you.

Don’t Waste Your Life

God designed your soul. And He designed you so that, just as a car engine is designed to run on gasoline, you’re designed to run on Him. He is what life is about. All of the disappointments, discouragements, and uncertainties of your life find their resolution in Him. And all of the satisfactions, fun experiences, and joys of life find their consummation in Him. Everything good in our lives is like a trail of breadcrumbs that leads us to the feast of God Himself. And everything bad in our lives is a reminder that life lived apart from knowing God in Christ is not the way it was meant to be.

And I also don’t want to see you waste your life. God created us for the purpose of rightly knowing and worshiping Him. That’s the meaning of life. That’s where true happiness and satisfaction are found. When you don’t live your life for that purpose, you waste it. So many people go through life seeking that happiness, but never find it because they don’t know what life is really about. I don’t want that for you. I don’t want you to suffer God’s wrath eternally for your sin. I want to spend eternity in heaven worshiping God with you, praising Him for how gracious He was to forgive our sins because of Christ’s sacrifice.

Receive Forgiveness

So would you receive Christ? Would you acknowledge your sinfulness before God and admit you can’t do a thing about it? Would you turn from your sin, and seek to live your life in submission to Jesus Christ? Would you trust in Jesus alone for your righteousness before God? Would you join me in worshiping the God we were created to know?

Source


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.


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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