Daily Archives: February 8, 2017

February 8, 2017 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report (US•World•Christian)

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Feb. 8, 2017 |

BLOOMBERG

If President Donald Trump imposes punitive tariffs against China of up to 10 percent, the country’s exports to the U.S. will fall as much as 25 percent, Ha Jiming, a China vice chairman at Goldman in Hong Kong, said in an article published by China Finance 40 Forum, a non-government research organization. Under that scenario, the Asian nation’s annual economic growth would decrease by as much as 1 percentage point, he wrote.

The controversial Dakota Access pipeline is set to gain the final go-ahead for completion after President Donald Trump asked for a speedy approval.

India’s central bank unexpectedly left borrowing costs unchanged for a second straight meeting and signaled that its interest-rate easing cycle is coming to an end.

Thailand’s central bank held its key interest rate near a record low to shield the nation’s economic recovery as the threat of trade protectionism mounts.

Chilean vintners have emerged as the biggest beneficiary of Japan’s booming wine market. Their low-priced, fruit-driven product has found a receptive niche among women in their 40s and 50s, who have helped boost wine consumption to a new record every year since 2012.

AP Top Stories

The Philippines is seeking US and Chinese help to guard a major sea lane as Islamic militants shift attacks to international shipping, officials said Wednesday.

An ex-convict who investigators say confessed to setting fire to a Florida mosque tied to the Orlando nightclub shooter has been sentenced to 30 years in prison.

South Korea’s special prosecutor has indicted a former culture minister and a former top aide to President Park Geun-hye on charges of abuse of power, coercion and perjury for their role in drafting a blacklist of dissenting artists.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday urged British Prime Minister Theresa May to follow the American administration and impose new sanctions on Iran over a recent missile test.

The longest-living fish in a zoological setting, a lungfish known as Granddad acquired by the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago in 1933, has been euthanized after suffering failing health well in his mid-90s, aquarium officials said on Monday.

Earth orbit is a mess. Millions of pieces of old spacecraft whiz around the planet at terrible speeds, posing a serious threat to new and ongoing missions. JAXA, Japan’s version of NASA, just attempted one of the first big tests to see whether it would be possible to clean up some of that space junk. It flopped.

CIA Director Mike Pompeo will visit Turkey on Thursday in his first overseas visit to discuss security issues, including Turkey’s fight against a movement led by a U.S.-based cleric accused of orchestrating a failed military coup, Turkish officials said, in a sign of improving relations between the allies.

Air strikes on Al-Qaeda’s former affiliate in Syria on Tuesday killed 37 people in the country’s northwest, most of them civilians, a monitoring group said.

Secretary of Defense James Mattis’s visit to Japan this week was almost pitch perfect. He let Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Defense Minister Tomomi Inada volunteer that they intended to increase Japan’s defense spending and look for new weapons systems to develop jointly with the United States. Mattis delivered the clear statement Tokyo wanted: that an attack on the Senkaku Islands would be considered an attack on the U.S.-Japan alliance under Article V of the 1960 Security Treaty. One can hear the huge sigh of relief on this side of the Pacific.

Gunmen killed six employees of the International Committee of the Red Cross in northern Afghanistan on Wednesday, the aid group said, adding that two other staffers were missing.

For the first time in decades, Yiddish and German songs sung by Holocaust victims can be heard, now that an old “wire recorder” has been repaired.

A suicide bomber struck an entrance to Afghanistan’s Supreme Court on Tuesday, killing at least 19 people in the latest in a series of attacks on the country’s judiciary.

Bank of America Corp has opened three completely automated branches over the past month, where customers can use ATMs and have video conferences with employees at other branches.

BBC

Russia’s main opposition leader, Alexei Navalny, has been found guilty of embezzlement and handed a five-year suspended sentence. It bars him from running for president next year against Vladimir Putin.

Three weeks after reports that Cameroon had blocked the internet in English-speaking parts of the country, residents say services have yet to be restored. So what is going on? Cameroonians have little doubt that pulling the plug on internet services for about 20% of the population is an intentional act by the government.

Somalia’s MPs are electing the country’s president in a heavily guarded aircraft hangar in Mogadishu, as the rest of the country is not safe. Traffic has been banned, schools have been shut and a no-fly zone imposed over the capital to prevent attacks.

South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma has ordered the deployment of about 440 troops to maintain law and order in parliament for his annual state of the nation address on Thursday. Opposition parties have condemned the decision as a “declaration of war”.

WND

Santa Clara University’s student government recently voted to deny a pro-capitalism campus club official recognition, citing the possibility that the group may invite conservative speakers, and that allowing it would be a stand against “humanity.”

The vast majority (92%) of left-wing protesters arrested on suspicion of politically-fueled offences in Berlin are young men who live with their parents, a new report found.

House Republicans during a closed-door meeting discussed how to protect themselves and their staffs from protesters storming town halls and offices in opposition to repealing Obamacare.


The Briefing 02-08-17

History made in Senate as Vice President joins in confirmation vote for Betsy DeVos

Public education and worldview: What’s really at stake

Science or Scientism? ‘March for Science’ plans rally in Washington DC on Earth Day

NYT Editorial Board: “Boy Scouts are recognizing transgender boys for what they genuinely are: boys.”

The post The Briefing 02-08-17 appeared first on AlbertMohler.com.


Top News – 2/8/2017

Report: Israel offered prisoner exchange to Hamas through intermediaries
Initial Arabic reports on Wednesday morning suggested that Israel has extended an offer for a new prisoner exchange to Hamas through intermediaries. Hamas’s military wing, the Izzadin Kassam Brigade, initially tweeted the report claiming that the alleged offer did not meet the terrorism group’s “minimum demands,” according to Al Jazeera. The Israeli government has not commented on the matter.

US federal court reassesses Trump’s controversial travel ban
Three US federal court judges weighed on Tuesday the fate of the controversial immigration ban US President Donald Trump has pushed to reinstate in recent weeks. The panel of three appellate judges from the US Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit reportedly grilled a Justice Department lawyer regarding the information and evidence Trump had used in forming his decision on the ban. They also questioned him about the extent of power the president should have in this particular case as well as others.

Settlements law spells trouble for Jordan
The Settlement Regulation Law passed on Monday night leaves Jordan in the lurch, poses a fresh challenge to the stability of the troubled kingdom and puts more pressure on the Jordanian-Israeli peace treaty. With the majority of its population of Palestinian origin and…as protector of the holy sites in Jerusalem, Jordan has a greater stake than any other country in a two-state solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

Brexit bill set for final vote in House of Commons
The bill empowering the government to begin the formal process of leaving the European Union is due to reach its final stages in the Commons later. MPs will debate and vote on more amendments – including whether to let EU nationals stay in the UK – for seven hours with a final vote at 20:00 GMT. The final vote could cause more Labour rifts, with its MPs ordered to back it.

Twitter rolls out new anti-abuse tools
Twitter has announced more changes intended to limit the amount of abuse on the network…It includes moves to identify people who have been permanently suspended and stop them creating new accounts…safer search results – removing tweets that contain potentially sensitive content and those from blocked or muted accounts…

Navy successfully tests new missile-defense system in Hawaii
A new missile-defense system developed by the United States and Japan destroyed a target missile during a test off the coast of Hawaii on Friday, a Missile Defense Agency statement said. The intercept of a medium-range ballistic missile, launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility in Hawaii, was a first for the system, which had conducted two previous flight tests, the statement said.

Tornado inflicts major damage in New Orleans East, damage reported across the metro area
Confirmed tornadoes and severe weather ripped through New Orleans and the surrounding area causing major damage to home and businesses…According to initial reports, two people are said to have suffered serious injuries and about a dozen others suffered have minor injuries…Over 15,000 customers are without power in several areas of the city and surrounding area.

ISIS unleash lady jihadi BITING BRIGADE armed with ‘metal jaws’ to tear women to death
Chilling stories have emerged of the actions of the Al-Khansa Brigade as ISIS are battled back across Mosul, in Iraq. Al-Khansa is a female-only jihadi group who serve as the religious police for other women – insuring they adhere the strict moral rules laid down by ISIS. The brigade have now been armed with a monstrous new “metal jaw” weapon used to torture other women to death.

Swedish Cop Posts Epic Facebook Rant On Immigrant Crime; Ignites Nationwide Firestorm
“Here we go; this is what I’ve handled from Monday-Friday this week: rape, rape, robbery, rape-assault and rape, extortion, drug crime, rape again…Suspected perpetrators; Ali Mohammed, Mahmod, Mohammed, Mohammed Ali, again, again, again. Christopher… what, is it true? Yes, a Swedish name snuck in on the edges of a drug crime. Mohammed, Mahmod Ali, again and again.”

EXCLUSIVE: Iran pulls missile from launchpad after apparent prep for launch, US officials say
Iran removed a powerful missile from a launchpad east of Tehran within the past few days, Fox News has learned, as U.S. and Iranian officials continued trading public barbs about the Islamic Republic’s missile tests.

Guess where Temple-worthy red heifer was found
“I’ve grown up with the stories, so I know how rare and valuable the red heifer is,” Rabbi Benny “Bentsion” Hershcovich told Breaking Israel News. “I’ve never seen a red heifer, and I never expected to see one. My heart literally jumped when I saw it.”

Why ‘fake news’ is now ensnaring liberals
Before the presidential election, when Hillary Clinton looked to be cruising to a victory, a cottage industry of fake and misleading news reports found an eager audience on many conservative Americans’ social media feeds. Now, nearly three months after President Trump’s stunning victory, same kind of alarmist, click-bait headlines, along with their false news reports, are becoming increasingly prevalent on liberal Americans’ feeds.

Senate Votes To Gag Elizabeth Warren After Anti-Sessions Outburst
Not The Onion. “Sen. Warren was giving a lengthy speech. She had appeared to violate the rule. She was warned. She was given an explanation… Nevertheless, she persisted.”

Army Preps For Urban Warfare In MegaCities: “Mass Migration, Disaster, And Inner-City Turmoil”
There will be war in the streets of America. Things have been engineered that way. The scenarios are many, the issues are complex. The current anger from the left, who are violently protesting against President Trump, is just one aspect of it. But the Pentagon and the U.S. national security structure is increasingly looking towards the shifting demographics around the globe – people have moved from rural areas, and shifted into cities. Where ever conflict stirs, there will be a need for military and SWAT response to the call. Entire cities will be locked down; door to door sweeps will often have violent ends.


February 7, 2017
ALAN KEYES — “I was deeply saddened to hear the new administration say something along the lines of upholding the rights of the LBGTQ community. It was my relearning of the lesson about not putting your trust in princes……. (more)

February 6, 2017
CLIFF KINCAID — In a recent article, “Surge in foreign students may be crowding Americans out of elite colleges,” The Washington Post stumbled on the truth about one of the factors affecting the rising cost of college for American students. The percentage of foreign students enrolling in both public and private colleges and universities has skyrocketed…. (more)

February 6, 2017

NEWSMAX — Some Republicans are slamming President Donald Trump for his kind words about Vladimir Putin. Trump in an interview that aired Sunday during the Fox Super Bowl pre-game show said he had respect for the Russian president and asked whether the U.S. was innocent when Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly called Putin a killer…. (more)


February 6, 2017

BYRON YORK — James Robart, the U.S. district judge in Washington State, offered little explanation for his decision to stop President Trump’s executive order temporarily suspending non-American entry from seven terror-plagued countries. Robart simply declared his belief that Washington State, which in its lawsuit against Trump argued that the order is both illegal and unconstitutional, would likely win the case when it is tried…. (more)


February 6, 2017
GREG COROMBOS — The only U.S. senator on President Trump’s list of potential candidates to be on the U.S. Supreme Court bench is hailing Trump’s selection of Neil Gorsuch of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to fill seat. On Tuesday, Trump named Gorsuch to fill the seat open since the sudden February 2016 death of Justice Antonin Scalia…. (more)

February 6, 2017
WORLDNETDAILY — Everyone knows about the tens of millions of dollars various George Soros front groups poured into Hillary Clinton’s failed presidential efforts in 2016, but the Republicans he supported – – from Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan and his predecessor, John Boehner, have received less attention…. (more)

February 6, 2017
ROBERT KNIGHT — Anarchy takes many forms. There is street violence, like that at the University of California at Berkeley last Wednesday, a microcosm of the anti-Trump rioting all over the country. A mob protesting a planned speech by Breitbart writer and self-styled iconoclast Milo Yiannopoulos turned ugly as 1,500 gathered…. (more)

February 6, 2017
WASHINGTON TIMES — More than half of IRS employees found to have intentionally cheated on their taxes last year were allowed to keep their jobs, according to numbers released by the inspector general that suggest the agency is still reluctant to punish its own staffers for breaking tax laws…. (more)

February 6, 2017
WASHINGTON TIMES — The climate change debate went nuclear Sunday over a whistleblower’s explosive allegation that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association manipulated data to advance a political agenda by hiding the global warming “pause.” In an article on the Climate Etc. blog, John Bates, who retired last year as principal scientist of the National Climatic Data Center, accused the lead author of the 2015 NOAA “pausebuster” report of trying to “discredit” the hiatus through “flagrant manipulation of scientific integrity guidelines and scientific publication standards.”… (more)

February 6, 2017
WASHINGTON EXAMINER — President Trump has broken a modern day presidential record for action, moving faster than any chief executive since Harry Truman to put his agenda in play…. (more)

February 5, 2017
WASHINGTON TIMES — A former Defense Department official under the Obama administration has raised the specter of a military coup to remove President Donald Trump from power. In an editorial penned for Foreign Policy, senior Pentagon policy official Rosa Brooks publicly suggested a military insurrection against the Trump administration may be the only option to oust one of the most divisive presidents in American history…. (more)

February 5, 2017
WESLEY PRUDEN — Donald Trump is about to get a tough test of his presidential leadership, with no true-or-false or multiple-choice questions. Every new president gets the test, usually administered by international creeps and bad guys. There’s no fudging the answers. Reality is the teacher, grading on a steep curve, and presidents pass or fail. There’s no soft grading…. (more)

February 5, 2017
ANDREW C. MCCARTHY — From time to time over the years, the eminent historian Daniel Pipes has lamented that treason, not just as a crime but as a concept, appears defunct in the West. The question of bringing treason charges against jihadists has been raised from time to time. Often its very asking proves Dr. Pipes’s point: Most radical Islamic terrorists are not American citizens; as to them, treason is not a cognizable offense because traitorous conduct is central to the crime…. (more)

February 5, 2017
WASHINGTON EXAMINER — President Trump spoke with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko for the first time since moving into the White House on Saturday, as violence in eastern Ukraine has spiked over the past week…. (more)

February 4, 2017
WASHINGTON EXAMINER — No one’s interested in trying to save Obamacare’s centerpiece as it faces certain death. Even as the healthcare industry heavily lobbies Republicans to keep the Affordable Care Act’s other main components, such as its subsidies and Medicaid expansion, doctors, hospitals and insurers are stepping away from the law’s individual mandate for people to buy insurance or pay a fine…. (more)

February 4, 2017

NEWSMAX — A federal judge in Boston on Friday declined to extend a temporary restraining order that allowed some immigrants into the United States from certain countries despite being barred by U.S. President Donald Trump’s recent executive order…. (more)


February 4, 2017

WASHINGTON EXAMINER — A federal judge in Seattle on Friday ordered a temporary nationwide restraining order to halt President Trump’s executive order that bans refugees and asylum seekers from seven countries in the Middle East and North Africa…. (more)


February 4, 2017
WASHINGTON EXAMINER — The Justice Department will ask for an emergency stay to honor President Trump’s executive action on immigration admissions, the White House’s Office of the Press Secretary said in a statement late Friday…. (more)

February 4, 2017
CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER — There are many people to thank for the coming accession of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. Donald Trump for winning the election. Hillary Clinton for losing it. Mitch McConnell for holding open the High Court seat through 2016, resolute and immovable against furious (and hypocritical) opposition from Democrats and media. And, of course, Harry Reid…. (more)

February 4, 2017
NEWSMAX — An executive order to overturn Obama administration’s LGBT workplace rights – – which President Donald Trump said he never had any intention to sign or impose – – was kiboshed by Jared Kushner and wife Ivanka Trump before reaching the Oval Office, Politico reported…. (more)

February 4, 2017
WASHINGTON EXAMINER — The House voted Friday to repeal an Obama administration regulation aimed at reducing methane emissions from fracking. Lawmakers voted 221-191 in favor of a resolution disapproving of the Obama-era rule from the Department of the Interior. Federal law allows Congress to override recently approved regulations under the Congressional Review Act…. (more)

February 4, 2017

THE COUNTER JIHAD REPORT — Stephen Coughlin arguably understands the enemy threat doctrine and how our enemy is strategically operating at a global level better than anyone else in America. In 2008, Coughlin – – an attorney with an expertise in international law and a Major in the U.S. Army (reserves) specializing in intelligence and strategic communications – – was called to the Pentagon after 9/11 and worked as a contractor for the Directorate for Intelligence at the Pentagon under the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs General Peter Pace (USMC) as the Islamic Law expert for the Department of Defense…. (more)


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)


This Is Not How You Reverse The Curse: Trump Administration Set To Announce Support For A ‘Two State Solution’

Donald Trump First Weekly Address - Public DomainMany had believed that the “two state solution” would be “dead” under a Trump administration, but that is turning out not to be the case at all. According to an Israeli news source, the Trump administration is about to publicly declare support for a “two state solution”, and officials have reportedly been in contact with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office regarding “ideas to promote the two state solution.” This is extremely alarming, because I have previously written about how those that bless Israel will be blessed and those that curse Israel will be cursed. UN Security Council Resolution 2334 was a major step toward dividing the land of Israel, and when Barack Obama refused to veto that resolution in December he put the United States on the wrong side of that equation. In an article back in January, I listed 10 things that Trump could do to try to reverse the curse that Obama had brought on America, but instead it appears that Trump is also being seduced by the idea that a “two state solution” will bring lasting peace to the Middle East. (Read More…)


Debt Apocalypse Beckons As U.S. Consumer Bankruptcies Do Something They Haven’t Done In Almost 7 Years

Bankrupt - Public DomainWhen debt grows much faster than GDP for an extended period of time, it is inevitable that a good portion of that debt will start to go bad at some point.  We witnessed a perfect example of this in 2008, and now it is starting to happen again.  Commercial bankruptcies have been rising on a year-over-year basis since late 2015, and this is something that I have written about previously, but now consumer bankruptcies are also increasing.  In fact, we have just witnessed U.S. consumer bankruptcies do something that they haven’t done in nearly 7 years.  The following comes from Wolf Richter(Read More…)


Here Come The Robots – And They Are Going To Take Almost All Of Our Jobs

Robot Human Hand - Public DomainWhat is going to happen to society when robots are able to do just about everything better, faster and cheaper than human workers can?  We live at a time when technology is increasing at an exponential pace.  Incredible advancements in robotics, computer science and artificial intelligence are certainly making our lives more comfortable, but they are also bringing fundamental changes to the workplace.  For employers, there are a lot of advantages to replacing human workers with robots.  Robots don’t surf around on Facebook when they are supposed to be working. Robots don’t need Obamacare, lunch breaks or vacation days. Robots never steal from the company and they never complain.  Up until fairly recently, human workers could generally perform many tasks more cheaply than robots could, but now that is rapidly changing. (Read More…)


Planned Parenthood Workers That Reached Abortion Sales Quota Goals Were Rewarded With Pizza Parties

Planned Parnethood EvilCould you imagine having a job where you had to meet an “abortion sales quota” every month?  According to a shocking new investigation, this was actually happening at Planned Parenthood clinics all over the nation, and workers that reached abortion sales quota goals were rewarded with pizza parties and other incentives.  Every year, Planned Parenthood murders hundreds of thousands of precious little children, but that isn’t good enough for them, and so they have their workers aggressively push abortions to the vulnerable young women who come into their facilities.  It is a national disgrace, and Planned Parenthood should be defunded by Congress immediately.  But of course Planned Parenthood was never defunded after it was revealed that they systematically harvest baby parts and sell them off to the highest bidder, and so many observers are pessimistic that they will be defunded now. (Read More…)


Teacher Unions Lose (And Kids Likely Win): DeVos Confirmed

Read More


Top Headlines – 2/8/2017

  • Stock futures little changed amid earnings rush (Read More)
  • Workers Set to Strike at World’s Largest Copper Mine (Read More)
  • For Trump Travel Ban, Hard Questions From U.S. Appeals Court (Read More)
  • Melania Trump Sues Mail Online for $150 Million (Read More)
  • Ivanka Trump oversaw Murdoch daughters’ trust (Read More)
  • Trump Gains Ally on Plan to Tap Offshore Profit for Infrastructure (Read More)
  • China says United States should ‘brush up on’ South China Sea history (Read More)
  • Russia Shows Why China Should Just Stop Burning Up Its Reserves (Read More)
  • Trump questions lawmakers’ efforts to curb asset seizures by police (Read More)
  • Companies Plow Ahead With Moves to Mexico, Despite Trump’s Pressure (Read More)
  • Concerns Loom Over a U.S. Pact to Protect Privacy of Europeans (Read More)
  • Russian court says opposition leader Navalny guilty of embezzlement (Read More)
  • Erdogan, Trump agree to act jointly against Islamic State in Syria (Read More)
  • China Central Bank Said to Call Bitcoin Exchanges for Talks (Read More)
  • Final call for the research analyst? (Read More)
  • Big Investors Cut Back on Commercial Property as Bull Market Loses Steam (Read More)
  • Greek Firefighters Take to Streets Over Hiring Conditions (Read More)
  • There’s a Simple, Overlooked Reason for the Global Market Rally (Read More)

Palestinian president Abbas says Israeli law on settlements defies international community

Abbas: Palestinians working with int’l courts against Israeli settlements

UN responds to Regulation Bill approval, says Israel ‘crossed a very thick red line’

Egypt: Outpost law ‘destructive’ to two-state solution

French President Hollande says ramp-up of Israeli settlements in the Palestinian territories opens way to annexation

White House: Outpost law will be ‘topic of discussion’ between Trump and Netanyahu

Lawmakers approve publication of report on Gaza war tunnel threat

Israel targeted under law passed to help 9/11 families sue Saudis

Elite Hamas fighters defecting to Islamic State

Islamic State recruiting child refugees as they head to Europe

Syrian and Turkish forces choke off Islamic State supply line

Trump stresses ‘close’ relationship with Turkey in first call with Erdogan

Donald Trump White House warns Iran ‘there’s a new president in town’

Khamenei Vows Trump Response on Iran Revolution Anniversary

Iran pulls missile from launchpad after apparent prep for launch, US officials say

UN urges sharing of airline passenger info in anti-terror fight

Most Europeans want immigration ban from Muslim-majority countries, poll reveals

White House leaves out attacks in Israel on list of 78 ‘underreported’ terrorist acts

‘My daughter’s death will not be used’: Parents furious over Trump’s false terrorism claims

UC Berkeley police defend ‘hands-off’ approach to riot over speaker

Sean Spicer warns ‘the Earth is a very dangerous place’ as he says Donald Trump confident his travel ban will be restored: live

Appeals court ends hearing over Donald Trump’s travel ban without announcing ruling

Federal judges skeptical on reinstating Trump travel ban

Trump’s Homeland Security chief: Travel ban should have been delayed

Rights groups say legal immigrants’ rights were violated

GOP Sens. Cotton, Perdue unveil bill to cut legal immigration ‘in half’

Senior Democrat says Trump court pick avoided questions ‘like the plague’

In historic first, after defection of 2 Republican senators, vice president’s vote required to pass Trump cabinet pick DeVos for education post

GOP warns: We’ll stay in session 24-7 to confirm Trump nominees

Senate Votes To Gag Elizabeth Warren After Anti-Sessions Outburst

Prominent Democratic Lawmaker Fumbles In Criticizing Trump

Nancy Pelosi says she can’t work with ‘President Bush’

Republican lawmakers face rising anger at town halls

In Their Own Words: Anti-Trump ‘Resistance’ Leaders Say They Want To Make America ‘Ungovernable’

Why ‘fake news’ is now ensnaring liberals

Voters await economic revival in a part of pro-Trump America

Wall Street edges up as Nasdaq sets record high

Economist: Nation’s Murder Rate Rising at Fastest Pace in Almost 50 Years

Nearly two-thirds of Navy planes grounded due to years of budget cuts

China proposes further tightening of internet oversight

Ankara mayor warns of ‘manmade quake’ threat

6.3 magnitude earthquake hits near Pasni, Pakistan

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Tegalrejo, Indonesia

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Lambasa, Fiji

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

Popocateptl volcano in Mexico erupts to 19,000ft

Sinabung volcano in Indonesia erupts to 19,000ft

Wild Week: Forecast Calls For Near-Record Highs, Followed By More Than Half a Foot of Snow

At least 7 tornadoes touch down in Louisiana, state of emergency declared

Brazil’s ‘black urine’ disease puzzle remains unsolved

Hepatitis in the Americas: Report reveals the enormous scale of this silent epidemic

Vatican row as Chinese official invited to organ transplant meet

Ageing Chinese mothers turn to frozen embryos, IVF to achieve dreams of family

Did the New York Times ignore top-selling book that damns abortionist as serial killer?

What Is Dripping? Dangerous Vaping And E-Cigarette Smoking Trend Being Tried By Teens Poses Health Risks

Five Reasons to Say No to a Church Covenant or Membership Contract

NAR Apostle Johnny Enlow’s whacky ‘prophetic’ Super Bowl ramblings

NAR Prophetess, Jennifer Eivaz, Sees California Turning Red, God’s Blessings Flooding In

Training Creative Goat Herders – C3 Conference 2017

Thomas S. Kidd – The Historic Connection Between Eugenics and Abortion

Tentacles of American Heresy: A View from South Africa

Pastor Spanks Himself for the Super Bowl and Other Silly Stuff

Letter to the Editor: Spiritual Formation at Bible Camp – Our Warnings Being Ignored

CBS poll: Two-thirds of Democrats say Islam and Christianity are equally violent

American Pastor Andrew Brunson has been held captive in Turkey for four months. The President must act.

6 False Teachings Bringing Deceptive Darkness Into the Church

Posted: 08 Feb 2017 06:25 AM PST

(Reported By Leading the Way) Since that very moment in the Garden of Eden when a single bite shattered the harmony of the world, man…

EU faces crisis as IMF warns Greek debts are on ‘explosive’ path

Posted: 08 Feb 2017 06:17 AM PST

The EU faces a looming crisis which could threaten the sustainability of the eurozone as the International Monetary Fund has warned Greece’s debts are on…
Zuckerberg funds mind-reading brain implant…

Posted: 08 Feb 2017 06:14 AM PST

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is funding the development of technology with the potential to read humans’ minds. The billionaire has just pledged to hand over…

Pastor Makes Congregants Drink Deadly Rattex Poison to Show Their Faith

Posted: 08 Feb 2017 06:10 AM PST

A South African pastor is causing a stir online for encouraging his congregants to drink deadly rat poison to “show forth their faith.”   At…

Russia conducts snap air force combat readiness check

Posted: 08 Feb 2017 06:06 AM PST

The Russian Air Force has been put on high alert as part of a sudden combat readiness check ordered by President Vladimir Putin. The Western…
Iran pulls missile from launch pad after apparent prep for launch

Posted: 08 Feb 2017 06:03 AM PST

Iran removed a powerful missile from a launchpad east of Tehran within the past few days, Fox News has learned, as U.S. and Iranian officials…
Austria ready to send troops to other European countries to keep migrants out

Posted: 08 Feb 2017 06:00 AM PST

The government in Vienna is working on amendments to Austrian laws that would allow troops to be sent to other European countries to help them…
Ex-New Age Expert Exposes the Occult Themes Hidden in the Super Bowl

Posted: 07 Feb 2017 06:44 PM PST

Steven Bancarz used to be enamored with the occult. He actively participated in astral projection, Christ-consciousness and more. But now he’s out to expose the…
Maxine Waters Claims Trump’s Actions ‘Dangerous to the United States’

Posted: 07 Feb 2017 06:40 PM PST

Monday at Capitol Hill at a House Democrats news conference, when asked about her comments last week that her “greatest desire,” would be to impeach…
Trump accuses media of covering up terrorist attacks

Posted: 07 Feb 2017 06:33 PM PST

Speaking to the U.S. Central Command on Monday, President Trump went off his prepared remarks to make a truly stunning claim: The media was intentionally…
Eclipse, Comet And Full Moon all coming this Friday Night

Posted: 07 Feb 2017 06:28 PM PST

Skywatchers will enjoy a rare space triple-header Friday night and early Saturday morning: A “penumbra” lunar eclipse during the full “snow” moon — and the…

Men’s Barbershop Settles With ‘Genderqueer’ Woman Who Sued for Being Denied Haircut

Posted: 07 Feb 2017 06:19 PM PST

A men’s barbershop in California has agreed to a settlement with a woman who identifies as “gender neutral” who filed a lawsuit last year after…
Here Come The Robots – And They Are Going To Take Almost All Of Our Jobs

Posted: 07 Feb 2017 06:16 PM PST

(By Michael Snyder) What is going to happen to society when robots are able to do just about everything better, faster and cheaper than human…
Powerful Magnitude 6.3 Earthquake strikes off southern Pakistan

Posted: 07 Feb 2017 03:09 PM PST

According to reports, a powerful 6.3-magnitude earthquake has hit off the southern coast of Pakistan, the US Geological Survey reported. The quake, which was originally…

Trump White House Refuses to Condemn Settlement Legalizations

Posted: 07 Feb 2017 01:59 PM PST

While his predecessor’s administration would likely have come out with a quick and sharply critical response to Israel’s passing of a law which retroactively legalizes…
Does Iran’s Seven Minute Nuclear Threat Conform To Gog and Magog Prophecy?

Posted: 07 Feb 2017 01:54 PM PST

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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.


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Two-Thirds of Democrats Say Islam, Christianity Equally Violent

According to Breitbart:

Almost seven out 10 Democrats believe Islam “encourages violence… about the same as other religions,” according to a new CBS poll.

The trusting attitude towards Islam is revealed in the February 2017 poll follows 17 tumultuous years of attacks against Americans motivated or shaped by Islamic ideology throughout the United States—from the 9/11 atrocity to the Pulse nightclub attack in Florida committed by an observant, orthodox Muslim man from a Muslim family.

Merely one-in-seven Democrats believe that Islam is more violent than other religions, such as Christianity, Mormonism, Judaism, and Buddhism. One-in-ten Democrats believe that Islam is less violent that other religions, according to the poll of 1,019 adults, which was taken Feb. 1 and Feb. 2.

In contrast, Republicans have a far colder view of Islam. Sixty-three percent of Republicans view Islam as  aggressive compared to other religions, and only two percent view Islam as more pacific than other faiths.

View article →

Do You Have an Inadequate Understanding of God?

John MacArthur explains that many of the problems that exist in the present day church begin with an inadequate understanding of God.

Transcript

You know when you look at the present-day church, I would say to start with the problems that exist in the church, and there are many, start with an inadequate understanding of God. We have a superficial, shallow, truncated, popularized, sort of personalized understanding of God. This is a massive problem. Because we don’t know the truth about God, we really don’t know the truth about anything else in its fullness and its richness.

The infantility, I guess you could say, of the church, the immaturity of the church, the superficiality of the church, the cheesiness of the church, the cheapness of the church, the shallowness of preaching is related to an inadequate understanding of the greatness and the glory of God.

Source: Do You Have an Inadequate Understanding of God?

Hillsong’s Apostolic ties to Wagner and the NAR

churchwatch central

False Apostle Dr David Cartledge has done a good job in exposing the history of the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) cult invading Australia. In his book The Apostolic Revolution, Cartledge links Roman Catholicism, the Apostolic Church, the Latter Rain cult, the birthing of the Charismatic Movement to the birthing of the Australian Christian Churches.

1876785012

It is important to know that at the time the Assemblies of God birthed Australian Christian Churches (ACC), Brian Houston was the president of the AOG. And it is important to understand that Brian Houston is not only an Apostle of the NAR in Australia at this time, the entire AOG by this time was of the New Apostolic Reformation, which is why Peter Wagner was a guest at the making of the ACC and acknowledged how the AOG “transitioned into an apostolic fellowship as the Assemblies of God in Australia.” This means, under Brian…

View original post 609 more words

February 8, 2017: Verse of the day

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Humility

and all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, for God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble. Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, (5:5b–6)

Inseparably linked to and underlying a submissive attitude is a mind given to humility (cf. Ps. 25:9; Dan 10:12; Mic. 6:8; Matt. 5:3–5; Eph. 4:1–2; James 4:10). Because always the truly humble—and only the humble—submit, both of Peter’s commands encompass all believers.

Clothe (egkomboomai) literally means “to tie something on oneself,” such as a work apron worn by servants. Here it describes figuratively covering oneself with an attitude of humility as one submits to authorities over him. The word for humility here is tapeinophrosunēn, “lowliness of mind,” or “self-abasement.” It describes the attitude of one who willingly serves, even in the lowliest of tasks (cf. 1 Cor. 4:1–5; 2 Cor. 4:7; Phil. 2:5–7). Perhaps even more so than today, humility was not an admired trait in the first-century pagan world. People saw it as a characteristic of weakness and cowardice, to be tolerated only in the involuntary submission of slaves.

As Peter wrote this verse, he likely recalled Jesus’ tying a towel on Himself and washing the disciples’ feet, including his own, as recorded in John 13:3–11 and applied by Jesus in verses 12–17, as follows:

So when He had washed their feet, and taken His garments and reclined at the table again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? You call Me Teacher and Lord; and you are right, for so I am. If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you. Truly, truly, I say to you, a slave is not greater than his master, nor is one who is sent greater than the one who sent him. If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.” (cf. Ps. 131:1–2; Matt. 25:37–40; Luke 22:24–27; Rom. 12:3, 10, 16; Phil. 2:3–11)

To reinforce his exhortation for humility, Peter quoted from Proverbs 3:34, God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble (cf. James 4:6). Peter’s quote differs slightly from the Septuagint by substituting God for the Septuagint’s “Lord,” but the names are obviously synonymous. Without question, that the Lord is opposed to the proud (cf. Prov. 6:16–17a; 8:13) is the greatest motivation for saints to adopt the attitude of humility. Pride sets one against God and vice versa. On the other hand, God blesses and gives grace to the humble (cf. Job 22:29; Ps. 37:11; Prov. 22:4; 29:23; Matt. 11:29; Luke 10:21; 18:13–14; 1 Cor. 1:28–29; 2 Cor. 4:7–18). The prophet Isaiah stated the principle well, “For thus says the high and exalted One who lives forever, whose name is Holy, ‘I dwell on a high and holy place, and also with the contrite and lowly of spirit in order to revive the spirit of the lowly and to revive the heart of the contrite” (Isa. 57:15; cf. 66:2).

The apostle Paul knew the grace that comes to the humble:

Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me—to keep me from exalting myself! Concerning this I implored the Lord three times that it might leave me. And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Cor. 12:7–10)

Based on the above verse from Proverbs that Peter mentioned, this command comes forcefully: therefore humble yourselves in submission, not only to avoid divine opposition and to receive divine grace, but because the authority over all believers in the church is none other than the mighty hand of God. Or as James stated it, “Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord” (4:10a).

The mighty hand of God is descriptive of God’s sovereign power at work in and through the elders of the church, as well as in the life experience of His people (cf. Isa. 48:13; Ezek. 20:33–34; Zeph. 1:4; 2:13; Luke 1:49–51). Whether for deliverance (Ex. 3:19–20; 13:3–16), for testing (Job 30:20–21), or for chastening (Ezek. 20:33–38), God’s might is always accomplishing His eternal purposes on behalf of His own (cf. Pss. 57:2; 138:8; Isa. 14:24–27; 46:10; 55:11; Jer. 51:12; Acts 2:23; Rom. 8:28; 9:11, 17; Eph. 3:11; Phil. 2:13). In their time of persecution, suffering, and testing, that assurance would encourage Peter’s audience to persevere (cf. Ps. 37:24; Prov. 4:18; Matt. 10:22; 24:13; Rom. 8:30–39; Heb. 12:2–3; James 1:4, 12; Rev. 3:5), knowing that all their suffering is only so that He may exalt them at the proper time (cf. 5:10). Even as Jesus Christ was born at the appropriate time (Gal. 4:4; Titus 1:3) and died a substitutionary death at the exact time God designed (1 Tim. 2:6), God will exalt (hupsoō, “to raise or lift up”) believers out of their trials, tribulations, and sufferings at His wisely determined time. Some have suggested that this exaltation could be a reference to the final eschatological glory that comes to believers at the Second Coming, the “last time” Peter referred to in 1:5 (cf. 2:12); but the Greek phrase en kairō is literally “in time” (cf. Acts 19:23; Rom. 9:9) and is not an eschatological term. It is better to see this as the appointed time when the Lord lifts the humble and submissive believer up out of difficulty.

If the foundational attitude for spiritual growth is submission, humility is, then, the footing to which the foundation is anchored. To become proudly rebellious, fight against the Lord’s purposes, or judge His providence as unkind or unfair is to forfeit the sweet grace of His exaltation when the trial has fulfilled its purpose (cf. James 1:2–4). It is the Lord Jesus Himself who promised, “Everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted” (Luke 14:11).

MacArthur New Testament Commentary