Daily Archives: June 15, 2017

June 15, 2017 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report (US•World•Christian)


Jun. 15, 2017 |


House Majority Whip Steve Scalise remained in critical condition Wednesday night after he and four others were wounded in a shooting at a congressional baseball practice in Alexandria, Virginia, near the nation’s capital.

Tunisian Prime Minister Yousef El-Shahed is targeting the foreign-currency black market as his government bids to boost state coffers and promote growth, after the slumping economy triggered some of the biggest protests since the Arab Spring.

President Donald Trump has delegated authority to determine troop levels in Afghanistan to Defense Secretary James Mattis, the Pentagon chief told lawmakers.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government passed controversial legislation that gives prosecutors the power to monitor and arrest people in the planning stages of crimes.

The U.S. Treasury Department wants to include China among a proposed group of hostile nations whose companies would undergo extra scrutiny for national security risks if they seek to buy stakes in American corporations, according to an administration official.

Nike Inc. is cutting about 2 percent of its workforce as the athletic brand revamps global operations, part of a bid to move faster and ward off competition from Adidas AG and Under Armour Inc. Nike had more than 70,000 jobs at the end of fiscal 2016, suggesting that the cuts could affect about 1,400 workers.

The U.S. job market continues to show signs of strength, as the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits fell to a three-week low, according to Labor Department data released Thursday. Initial jobless claims fell by 8k to 237k (forecast was 241k); close to 43-year-low of 227k.

The Alabama Memorial Preservation Act prohibits local governments or civic groups from removing historical monuments from public property if the monuments have been in place for at least 40 years.

Federal Reserve officials forged ahead with an interest-rate increase and additional plans to tighten monetary policy despite growing concerns over weak inflation. Wednesday’s decision brings the Fed’s target for the federal funds rate, which covers overnight loans between banks, to a range of 1 percent to 1.25 percent.

The newest and costliest U.S. aircraft carrier, praised by President Donald Trump and delivered to the Navy on May 31 with fanfare, has been dogged by trouble with fundamentals: launching jets from its deck and catching them when they land. While the Navy says the landing system has been fixed, the next-generation carrier built by Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc. still hasn’t been cleared to launch F/A-18 jets carrying a full complement of fuel tanks under their wings, a handicap that could limit their effectiveness in combat.

AP Top Stories

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe turned the conversation to gun control during a press conference with law enforcement officers following the shooting at a congressional baseball practice in Alexandria, Va., on Wednesday.

An Iranian navy vessel conducted an “unsafe and unprofessional” interaction with US ships by pointing a laser at an accompanying Marine Corps helicopter, the US Navy said Wednesday.

A strong 6.9 magnitude earthquake hit western Guatemala early on Wednesday, killing at least two people and causing power outages, as well as damage to some buildings, officials said.

Facing sharp criticisms from impatient senators, Defense Secretary James Mattis on Tuesday agreed that “we are not winning in Afghanistan” and promised a new strategy by mid-July. Mattis also said that even victory in America’s longest war would likely mean a long-term U.S. troop presence.

A Russian cyber-attack on the US electoral system affected almost 40 states during the 2016 election, sources have revealed. The cyber-attack – which targeted software used by poll workers on election day – hit 39 states, sources familiar with the US investigation into the matter told Bloomberg. That number, if accurate, represents a far larger attack than previously reported.

U.S. factory output fell 0.4 percent unexpectedly in May on a broad decline in production, including the manufacturing of cars, casting a shadow over the economy’s rebound from sluggishness at the start of the year.


The Wannacry worm that infected organisations in 150 countries in May has been blamed on North Korea by the US’s National Security Agency (NSA).

The Amazon basin could suffer significant and irreversible damage if an extensive dam building program goes ahead, scientists said. Currently, 428 hydroelectric dams are planned, with 140 already built or under construction.

The Pentagon has raised concerns about China’s access to artificial-intelligence-based technology developed in the US, according to Reuters. The news agency says a leaked report proposes that export controls be updated to stop Chinese organizations being able to invest in some start-ups.

Qatar has signed a $12bn deal to buy F-15 fighters jets from the US.


Senators are seriously considering keeping in place some ObamaCare taxes for longer than the House-passed bill would as they seek to draft healthcare legislation that can pass their chamber with a simple majority.

Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards boasted in a television interview of all the options women who contact her abortion-business outlets are counseled to consider. There’s abortion. And abortion. And abortion. Even though it may not be what Richards said in so many words, it’s what investigators for Live Action found in their research of Planned Parenthood clinics.

Federal and state authorities investigated the possibility there was a “dirty bomb” on a ship at a local terminal, but later gave the all-clear, reports CBS Charleston, S.C. station WCSC-TV.

The Briefing 06-15-17

Congressional baseball shooting leaves 4 wounded, including Rep. Steve Scalise with critical injuries

After finding new fossils, scientists are rewriting the origin story of humanity—again.

SBC adopts resolution condemning alt-right white supremacy, affirming biblical unity of humanity

How many Jenner’s? The sad confusion when Jenner refers to “Bruce” in the past tense

What’s in a board game? It turns out a lot more history, culture, and worldview than you might think

The post The Briefing 06-15-17 appeared first on AlbertMohler.com.

Top News – 6/15/2017

Mainstream Media Incitement of Violence Against Republicans Leads to Shooting of U.S. Congressman
The madman who opened fire and shot a sitting U.S. congressman (and majority whip) and others today is a liberal who wanted to “kill as many Republicans as possible”, who was a member of a group called “Terminate the Republican Party”, and who had recently written: It’s Time to Destroy Trump & Co. And at least some liberals expressed pleasure that the congressman was shot.

Rachel Maddow Denies Show Had Contact With VA Shooter; Segment Does Not Re-Air on Show Repeat
Wednesday on MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show,” host Rachel Maddow reacted to news that James Hodgkinson, the now-deceased alleged shooter in an incident that has resulted in five people hospitalized, including House Majority Whip Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), was a fan of her program.

Scientists Discover the Bloody Fountain of Youth, But Does it Threaten Messiah?
A new treatment involving transfusing the blood of young donors into older recipients is being lauded not only as a cure for disease but also as a possible treatment for reversing the effects of aging. But the unusual treatment, which evokes Biblical villains and dredges up medieval nightmares, has rabbis divided: is this a blessing or is it a curse?

‘1 down, 216 to go’: GOP congresswoman receives threatening email after Virginia shooting
“One down, 216 to go,” reads the email sent to freshman Republican Claudia Tenney. The subject line apparently referred to the number of House seats required to have a majority in a vote, according to Politico.

US threatens to replace UN human rights body over anti-Israel stance
The United States has threatened to replace the United Nations Human Rights Council with an alternative group of nations, unless the 47-member body halted its anti-Israel bias and underwent a series of reforms. “We are either going to reform this thing and make it reflect what it should be reflecting or we will withdraw our support for it,” US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Wednesday in Washington.

WATCH: Russian Ambassador to Israel – Hamas, Hezbollah not terrorists at all
The Russian Ambassador to Israel, Alexander Shein, refused to call Hamas and Hezbollah terrorist organizations but rather “radical organizations which sometimes adhere to extremist political views” in an interview on Israeli TV last week (June 9). In an interview with Channel 9, the Russian-language Israeli TV channel, the Russian envoy stated that “we do not consider these organizations to be terrorists.”

Somalia: Suicide car bomber targets Mogadishu restaurant
A combined suicide bomb and gun attack at a hotel and restaurant in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, has killed at least 18 people. The attack started on Wednesday evening, as Muslims were breaking their daily fast during Ramadan. A chef at the Pizza House restaurant, a modern venue popular with young Somalis, was among the victims.

Japan passes controversial anti-terror conspiracy law
Japan’s lawmakers have passed a controversial bill allowing authorities to target terror conspiracies. PM Shinzo Abe’s ruling bloc pushed it through the upper house early on Thursday, despite vocal opposition. The government argues the law is needed to improve security ahead of the 2020 Olympics, and to comply with a UN agreement Japan has signed.

Qatar buys F-15 fighter planes in billion-dollar US deal
Qatar has signed a $12bn deal to buy F-15 fighters jets from the US. The sale was finalised at a meeting in Washington between US defence chief Jim Mattis and his Qatari counterpart. It comes days after US President Donald Trump accused Qatar – a major US ally – of funding terrorism “at a very high level” – a charge Qatar denies.

Gunman dead after attacking congressmen at Virginia baseball field
A gunman who sprayed bullets at Republican lawmakers during baseball practice in a Washington DC suburb has died, US President Donald Trump said. House of Representatives Majority Whip Steve Scalise was one of five injured in the early morning ambush at a park in Alexandria, Virginia. The attacker, identified as Illinois native James T Hodgkinson, 66, was killed after a firefight with police.

Swedish commuters raise concerns over security and privacy by using microchips to pay for their journey
The days of having to remember to grab your travel card on your way out of the house could soon be a thing of the past. SJ Rail, a Swedish rail operator, claims that up to 100 of its customers are embedding microchip implants into their hands to pay for their journey. The creepy technology raises security and privacy issues, as the data generated could be used to track people.

Fed raises rates, unveils balance sheet cuts in sign of confidence
The Federal Reserve raised interest rates on Wednesday for the second time in three months and said it would begin cutting its holdings of bonds and other securities this year…In lifting its benchmark lending rate by a quarter percentage point to a target range of 1.00 percent to 1.25 percent and forecasting one more hike this year, the Fed seemed to largely brush off a recent run of mixed economic data.

Officers To Be Put On 12-Hour Shifts, As City Violence Increases
Baltimore sees multiple deadly shootings in just a matter of hours. It was a burst of violence that forced the commissioner to make a drastic move today. All uniformed officers will be on mandatory 12-hour shifts, as the city hustles to control the crime.

BOMBSHELL: Indiana joins Idaho in claiming Obama’s DHS tried to hack their election systems
Indiana is the newest state to accuse the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) of trying to hack its state electoral system. The state’s IT team claimed that a DHS IP address repeatedly scanned Indiana’s system. The attempted hacks occurred tens of thousands of times over a period of 46 days, beginning while Vice President Mike Pence was still the governor of Indiana.

Obamacare-repeal promises fizzle before America’s eyes
Senate Republican leaders are not offering any specifics on their health-care reform bill, but reports of critical concessions in at least three major areas leave skeptical conservatives worried that years worth of Obamacare-repeal promises are wilting before our eyes.

Trump accepts ‘dumb deal’ to take Australia’s rejected Muslim ‘refugees’
According to a new report, President Trump is moving forward with a deal made by the Obama administration to resettle illegal-immigrant boat people whom Australia will not accept as “refugees” even though they have been classified as such by the United Nations.

Comey Colluded with Obama on Radical Islamic Murder of US Marines
In July 2015 Islamist Mohammad Youssef Abdulazeez shot up two military offices in Chattanooga leaving four U.S. Marines dead.

REPORT: Obama Had His Own ‘Back Channel’ To Moscow
The Obama administration had a “back channel” to communicate with Russian officials, according to a new report detailing Moscow’s efforts to delegitimize the U.S. presidential election results.

School Children Now Have Involuntary Weekly Doctor Visits: Drugging Without Consent
In the Australian state of Victoria, a state program kicked in at the beginning of 2017 to mandate that children as young as 12 should see a doctor in school at least once a week, to receive drugs and medical treatment without parental consent.

The Left Refuses To Tone Down Their Inflammatory Language, And As A Result We Now Have War In The Streets

What in the world did the left think would happen?  When Kathy Griffin posed for a photo with “Trump’s bloody head”, that sent a message.  And the twisted version of “Julius Caesar” that is currently being put on by a New York theater group in which a character meant to closely resemble Donald Trump is brutally assassinated sends a message.  At any time of the day, you can find leftist radicals openly discussing violence against Trump and Republicans on Facebook and Twitter, and groups like Antifa have been employing extremely violent tactics ever since the Inauguration.  So it is not much of a surprise that a huge Bernie Sanders supporter decided that it would be a good idea to try to mow down Republican members of Congress as they were practicing for an upcoming charity baseball game on Wednesday.  66-year-old James T. Hodgkinson was simply the product of a political movement that is absolutely seething with hate. (Read More…)

Lucifer’s Architects of Anarchy and the End of America

In the last 8 years, President Obama, the mainstream media and the Secular Left have sought every opportunity to transform, undermine, eradicate, rewrite, slander, bulldoze, and undo what is left of our sacred Constitution, our Judeo/Christian heritage, our national security, our free markets, liberties and republic ideals and have successfully won the day!

View Article

Mark Steyn: ‘The Left Wants To Denormalize And Dehumanize Its Political Opposition’

Conservative author Mark Steyn tied Wednesday’s attempted assassinations of Republican congressmen to the preference of many on the left to “dehumanize” their political opponents, instead of engaging in honest debate with them.

View Video

Death Threats Mount for GOP Lawmakers ‘Outspoken Against the Left’

According to LifeZette, Republican House members and their staff are claiming that alarming messages have steadily increased since 2016 election. Kathryn Blackhurst has the story:

The same day that a gunman shot House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) during a Republican baseball practice, a GOP congresswoman from New York received an ominous email with the subject line, “One down, 216 to go…”

Gunman James T. Hodgkinson opened fire on the group of lawmakers and staffers gathering at a baseball field in Alexandria, Virginia, early Wednesday morning while practicing for the bipartisan Congressional Baseball Game for Charity, set for Thursday. Scalise was critically injured during the fray, and two Capitol Police officers and a congressional staffer were also injured.

View article →

Targeting Conservatives – Literally

In a genuine act of political terrorism and an actual despicable hate crime, a leftwing Trump-hater has just recently gone on a shooting spree, targeting Republican politicians practicing for a bi-partisan baseball game. As you know, five people have been injured, including House Majority Whip Steve Scalise who is now in critical condition.

The shooter had first asked if these were Republicans or Democrats. When told they were Republicans he soon thereafter opened fire. Thankfully he was killed by security forces before this turned into a full-scale massacre. The assailant was Illinois resident James T. Hodgkinson.

scaliseHe was an out and proud leftist. His FB page (now taken down) was full of anti-Trump and anti-Republican posts. He campaigned for socialist presidential candidate Bernie Sanders. He also railed about the rich and the need to tax them out of existence.

Of course we will learn more about him in the days to come. But this is a clear case of political violence, and sensible voices are rightly asking how much the inflamed hate speech and rhetoric of the Left has contributed to this. We see this intolerant, violence-provoking mindset on full display on many American college campuses. Indeed, we have even had college professors calling for Republicans to be “lined up and shot”.

And the falsely-called antifa (anti-fascist) movement is one of the most fascist groups going. These leftist militants engage in violent demonstrations and seek to shut down any appearances or speaking engagements of conservatives. One write up about the group in a left-wing magazine puts it this way:

Anti-fascist, or antifa, doesn’t only delineate that which opposes fascism. It is a set of tactics and practices that have developed since the early 20th century (and the rise of fascism in Italy) as a confrontational response to fascist groups, rooted in militant left-wing and anarchist politics. As organizers from anti-fascist research and news site Antifa NYC told The Nation: “Antifa combines radical left-wing and anarchist politics, revulsion at racists, sexists, homophobes, anti-Semites, and Islamophobes, with the international anti-fascist culture of taking the streets and physically confronting the brownshirts of white supremacy, whoever they may be.” As with fascisms, not all anti-fascisms are the same, but the essential feature is that anti-fascism does not tolerate fascism; it would give it no platform for debate.

Exactly. The radical left does not want debate. It wants to shut down all debate. It does not want any differing voices to be given a chance to be heard and make their case. It will resort to whatever means are necessary to shut down debate and force conservatives to shut up. Hmmm, sounds exactly like fascism to me.

Indeed, how often do we find in the mainstream media and elsewhere the Left happily joking about all this, using all sorts of violence-filled “humour” and rhetoric to make their anti-Trump and anti-conservativism points? We have heard and seen far too many graphic examples of this of late.

The leftist comedian Kathy Griffin had her Trump severed head photoshoot explode on her thankfully. But she actually thought that this was so cute and funny, until all the negative feedback started to pour in. And we also had the taxpayer funded public theatre, the New York City “Shakespeare in the Park” group, with a rendition of Julius Caesar depicting Donald Trump being stabbed to death.

All sorts of lefty celebs have been frothing at the mouth, spewing out diabolical things against Trump and conservatives. Madonna for example said in an impassioned speech: “Yes I am angry. Yes, I am outraged. Yes, I have thought an awful lot about blowing up the White House.”

Leftist America rapper Snoop Dogg actually shoots a mock President Trump in his recent video “Lavender.” And another rapper, Everlast, shared these tolerant and loving lyrics with us: “F*ck that dude. I’ll smack that f*cker’s comb-over right off his f*cking scalp. Like, for real, if I met Donald Trump, I’d punch him in his f*cking face. And that’s not a joke.”

Lefty actor Charlie Sheen tweeted “Dear God; Trump next, please! Trump next, please! Trump next, please! Trump next, please! Trump next, please! Trump next, please!” just hours after it was announced that Debbie Reynolds had died.

Just a day before the ballpark shooting David Simon of HBO quite openly urged anti-Trump lefties to commit actual violence, as he told them to “pick up a goddamn brick” if things don’t go their way. Hard-core left militant Dan Savage put it this way: “I wish [the Republicans] were all f*cking dead!” And just after the shooting took place a House Republican lawmaker, Rep. Claudia Tenney, R-New York, received an email with this subject line: “One down, 216 to go…”

There are just too many examples of this to recount here. Thankfully a new article offers twenty examples of leftist calls for violence in the Trump-era: http://www.wnd.com/2017/06/20-times-violence-threatened-used-in-wake-of-dems-political-collapse/

And another author has done a very similar list, also offering twenty cases of liberals calling for violence against conservatives: townhall.com/columnists/johnhawkins/2017/06/15/20-liberal-calls-for-violence-against-conservatives-in-quotes-n2341401

Looking at the leftist MSM website articles on this shooting is most revealing: many comments beneath the articles are praising the attack, with many ‘likes’ going their way. As just one example, this comment was found at the Huff Post: “What’s more harmful: Putting millions already on the margins more at-risk via draconian policies, or shooting a racist lawmaker in the hip?”

Um, might there be a connection between all this hate, rage, and calls to violence, and the actual violence we now see taking place? Only leftist political ideologues will claim there is no connection between the two. The left is fomenting a culture of hate and violence. This shooting is the bitter fruit of their bitter hatred.

Now, can conservatives at times engage in provocative and reckless rhetoric, even at times calling for violence against opponents on the left? Yes that can happen. But just bear this in mind: during eight years of Obama’s inflammatory reign, millions of American conservatives were routinely offended, vilified and outraged.

Yet I am not aware of any responsible conservatives seeking to assassinate Democrats or bump off Obama. I am not aware of any conservatives going on a shooting rampage, targeting Democrat politicians. I am not aware of conservatives regularly speaking about the need to engage in violence against lefties during those eight years.

Indeed, imagine all the MSM outrage if conservatives did. But because this was a leftist shooting, we hear nothing about hate crimes and political violence. The MSM is reading off the same song sheet here: this was a lone wolf, and he has nothing to do with leftism, and there was no leftist provocation for all this.

Yeah right. I am not buying it for a moment. When the Left as a whole screams hate and calls for violence against conservatives on a daily basis, month in and month out, then of course we’re going to see militant leftists taking their advice and actually doing what so many of them would like to do as well, but don’t have the guts to carry out.

America right now is in a real bad way. With leftists freely and proudly spewing hate-filled rhetoric on a daily basis – including calls to violence – things will only get worse. God have mercy on America. Keep the country in your prayers please – it sure needs it.


[1221 words]

The post Targeting Conservatives – Literally appeared first on CultureWatch.

Mid-Day Snapshot

June 15, 2017

Further Reflections: DemoMSM Rhetoric and the Attempted Murder of Republicans

What to make of overheated political rhetoric in America today. Who’s to blame for yesterday’s atrocity?

The Foundation

“The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered as the palladium of the liberties of a republic; since it offers a strong moral check against the usurpation and arbitrary power of rulers; and will generally, even if these are successful in the first instance, enable the people to resist and triumph over them.” —Justice Joseph Story (1833)

ZeroHedge Frontrunning: June 15

  • Markets Are Sliding Again (Read More)
  • Trump’s Legal Peril Deepens as Mueller Expands Scope of Probe (Read More)
  • Trump blasts report on possible obstruction of justice probe (Read More)
  • Putin says ex-FBI head Comey gave no proof Russia meddled in U.S. election (Read More)
  • The Fed Is Flying Blind (Read More)
  • Fed Lays Out Plan to Unwind Years of Asset Purchases (Read More)
  • In the Search for Yield, Investors Play the Risky Role of Lender (Read More)
  • London tower block fire toll rises to 17, more feared dead (Read More)
  • Planning documents for tower in fatal fire omitted safety barriers (Read More)
  • Tim Cook on Trump, the HomePod, and the Legacy of Steve Jobs (Read More)
  • Uber Gaffe Is Latest Drama in Storied Career of Billionaire Bonderman (Read More)
  • Saudi Billionaire, Daimler Invest in Mideast Uber Rival Careem (Read More)
  • Bank of England comes closest to voting for rate hike since 2007 (Read More)
  • Immigration Not Enough to Halt Exodus From Biggest U.S. Cities (Read More)
  • Russia’s Putin says bridge to Crimea is on schedule (Read More)
  • Goldman-backed startup Circle launches no-fee foreign payments service (Read More)

Featured Blogs

Top Headlines – 6/15/2017

Israeli and international groups warn of looming Gaza disaster

Palestinians say Netanyahu, not Abbas, to blame for Gaza crisis

Hamas could easily solve Gaza’s electricity crisis, but prefers to finance tunnels and rockets

Palestinian Authority attacks Hamas, calls Gaza ‘the second Nakba’

Israel rejects US claim Palestinians stopping payouts to terrorists

Tillerson waters down statement that Palestinians ‘changed policy’ of terror payments

Tillerson retreats from pledge to fill anti-Semitism envoy post

Tillerson: Israel embassy move both ‘if’ and ‘when’

The White House’s plan for peace in the Middle East: reduce building in Judea, Samaria, use Jordan and Gulf states to help with Israel’s security.

Israel advancing 14,000 Palestinian homes in Area C, right-wing warns

New Zealand says it stands behind anti-settlement UN motion

Over 200 IDF soldiers contract mysterious skin disease on southern base

Despite Public Outcry, Egypt to Transfer Islands to Saudi Arabia

Senate votes to support Trump’s arms sale to Saudi Arabia

Iranian boat shines laser at US aircraft in Strait of Hormuz

UN’s Zeid warns Gulf states to respect rights in Qatar row

Amid Gulf crisis, US and Qatar agree on F-15 fighter sale

Human cost of the Qatar crisis: ‘families are being torn apart’

How BAE sold cyber-surveillance tools to Arab states

U.S.-Led Airstrikes in Syria Killed Hundreds of Civilians, U.N. Panel Says

ISIS drones are attacking U.S. troops and disrupting airstrikes in Raqqa, officials say

ISIS Using Hollywood Movies in Recruiting Propaganda

Afghan official: ISIS moves to seize Osama bin Laden’s hideout

US military dismisses chance of massive troop surge in Afghanistan

Suicide car bomber detonates outside Somalia restaurant

Somalia restaurant siege: 17 dead as gunmen take hostages in Mogadishu

US official: 12 Turkish agents to be charged for DC clashes

Japan accused of stifling freedom with new terror law

US shipping terminal evacuated after ‘dirty bomb’ threat

Power outage hits Brussels airport, causing many delays

Visits From Nations on Trump’s Travel-Ban List Fall Sharply

Trump resets clock on extreme vetting travel ban procedures

No apologies: ICE chief says illegal immigrants should live in fear of deportation

Mayor of Rome seeks to ban immigantion

Congressman Scalise, Others Shot; Gunman Is Dead

GOP House Whip Steve Scalise in critical condition after shooting at baseball practice

Shooting At GOP Baseball Practice Latest In Pattern Of Violence Against Republicans

Members of Congress receive threats, consider security following shooting

Steve Scalise shooting: ‘Political rhetorical terrorism’ contributed to attack, rep says

Carlson: Political Violence ‘Threatens the Basic Stability of Our Country’

Trump sits by bedside of congressman wounded in shooting

Scalise shooter: Dead gunman ID’d as Trump-hating building inspector from Illinois

Virginia Shooting Suspect Was Distraught Over Trump’s Election

Suspect blasted GOP for favoring ‘super rich’ in letters to local newspaper

‘This Isn’t a Gun Issue’: Loesch Rips McAuliffe For Gun Control Rhetoric After Shooting

Rep. Chris Collins After Scalise Shooting: I’ll Be Carrying Concealed at Next Game

Four killed in shooting at San Francisco UPS facility, including gunman

Officers To Be Put On 12-Hour Shifts, As City Violence Increases

London Fire: High-Rise Apartment Blaze Kills at Least 12, Injures 78

Special counsel is investigating Trump for possible obstruction of justice, officials say

Krauthammer: Sessions ‘Exposed the Absurdity’ of Trump-Russia Case

Trump Sued Over Foreign Business Dealings by Democrat Lawmakers

Advertisers are in the hot seat as activists both for and against Trump call for boycotts

Fed hikes interest rates despite declining inflation, sets plan for balance sheet reduction

May inches toward deal to stay in power as battle rages over Brexit

Dairy dispute sours Belarus-Russia relations

Swedish railway uses microchip implants

The Internet is mauling America’s malls. Is your favorite retailer closing its doors?

‘Retail Apocalypse’ Moves North As Sears Canada Admits Its Future Is In “Serious Doubt”

Billionaires are stockpiling land that could be used in the apocalypse – here’s where they’re going

Facebook gives bots ability to negotiate, compromise

The Pentagon is building robotic wingmen to fly alongside fighter planes

Massive earthquake triggers landslides in Guatemala

5 dead in magnitude 6.9 earthquake in western Guatemala

5.9 magnitude earthquake hits near L’Esperance Rock, New Zealand

5.5 magnitude earthquake hits near Puerto Escondido, Mexico

5.5 magnitude earthquake hits near Puerto Madero, Mexico

5.4 magnitude earthquake hits near Puerto Madero, Mexico

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Champerico, Guatemala

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Uyugan, Philippines

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Nuevo Progreso, Guatemala

Sheveluch volcano on Kamchatka, Russia erupts to 40,000ft

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 25,000ft

Klyuchevskoy volcano on Kamchatka, Russia erupts to 23,000ft

Sinabung volcano in Indonesia erupts to 18,000ft

Reventador volcano in Ecuador erupts to 13,000ft

Sakurajima volcano on Japan erupts to 11,000ft

Dukono volcano in Indonesia erupts to 10,000ft

Ex-UN chief says Trump must rethink on climate

Satellites forewarn of locust plagues

Scientists design laser to kill weeds

CRISPR pioneer Doudna envisions a world of woolly mammoths and unicorns

DR Congo polio outbreak ‘from poor vaccine coverage’

GOP Senators May Fund Planned Parenthood in Obamacare Repeal Bill

Ireland’s first gay prime minister enters office

Southern Baptists Embrace Gender-Inclusive Language in the Bible

Will Trump’s Tax Reforms Reduce Giving to Churches?

Mike Ratliff – Religious Christians who are not in Christ

Discernment Ministries Not Needed? Would the Apostle Paul Agree?

Potters House Gives T.D. Jakes Classic Restored Trans Am for His Birthday

Does Andy Stanley Understand God, Scripture or the Gospel?

Dr Brown’s lack of discernment exposed by a discerning former AOG Pastor

Colombia’s first THREE-man marriage between a ‘polyamorous family’ is legally recognised

Sri Lanka: over 20 attacks on Christians this year

Southern Baptists Go ‘Gender-Inclusive’ On Bible

Posted: 15 Jun 2017 06:49 AM PDT

The Southern Baptist Convention’s 2017 meeting is underway during a time of crisis and division for the nation’s largest Protestant denomination. Much of the division…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Greg Laurie Warns, What Could Happen If There’s No Spiritual Awakening in America

Posted: 15 Jun 2017 06:39 AM PDT

The United States is “overdue” for another spiritual awakening and Christian revival or else it could run the risk of becoming a post-Christian state like…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Porn Addiction Is Eroding Teenagers “Humanity”

Posted: 15 Jun 2017 06:20 AM PDT

Pornography addiction is the “primary erosion of humanity” that the modern generation must actively fight against, says Chris Bruno, a licensed counselor and president of…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Powerful eruption of Russian volcano sends ash to nearly 40,000 feet

Posted: 15 Jun 2017 06:13 AM PDT

A major eruption started at Russia’s Sheveluch volcano at 16:20 UTC on June 14, 2017. KVERT reports a plume of ash reached a height of…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Pop Star Katy Perry’s Christian Evangelist Dad Has a Message for Those Tempted to Judge His Daughter

Posted: 15 Jun 2017 06:10 AM PDT

Pop star Katy Perry’s parents — well-known Christian evangelists — are imploring the public to pray for their daughter rather than rebuke her. “I want you to…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

‘Crash Override’ malware heightens fears for US electric grid

Posted: 15 Jun 2017 06:04 AM PDT

The identification of malware tied to a cyber attack on Ukraine last year is putting a renewed focus on threats to America’s electric grid. Security…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

DAYS OF LOT: Colombia officially recognizes ‘polyamorous’ marriage of 3 gay men

Posted: 15 Jun 2017 05:51 AM PDT

A marriage between three gay men has been legally recognized in Colombia’s first official “polyamorous” union.  The the union of actor Victor Hugo Prada, teacher…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

DEVELOPING: 7 dead, 59 injured after explosion strikes kindergarten in eastern China

Posted: 15 Jun 2017 05:45 AM PDT

Seven people have died following an explosion at a kindergarten in Fengxian in China’s eastern Jiangsu province, Chinese state media reports. Police have yet to…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Billionaires are stockpiling land that could be used in the apocalypse

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 06:39 PM PDT

A rising number of American billionaires are channeling their inner Bear Grylls — some in preparation for an apocalyptic event, be it a viral epidemic,…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Landslides and floods kill 156 in Bangladesh, Death toll could rise

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 05:00 PM PDT

Heavy rains have triggered a series of landslides and floods in Bangladesh and neighboring northeast India, killing at least 156 people over two days, and…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

DEVELOPING: Lockdown at Air Force base in CA over ‘real world security incident’

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 04:53 PM PDT

The Travis Air Force Base in Solano County, California, is asking the public to stay away, as emergency crews respond to a “real world security…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Deadly sandstorm changes day into night across Punjab, Pakistan killing 7

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 04:41 PM PDT

On June 10, 2017, a deadly dust storm disrupted life in the entire Punjab province with powerful winds reaching 195 km/h (121 mph). The apocalyptic…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

North Korean drone photographed US missile defense site

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 04:36 PM PDT

A suspected North Korean drone photographed a U.S. missile defense system in South Korea before it crashed near the border where it was found last…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

DEVELOPING: UK set for Hottest Summer on Record

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 04:33 PM PDT

Britain is about to roast in a 30C (86F) blazing heatwave ahead of what’s being tipped as the hottest summer on record. Temperatures are poised…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

What you need to know about 4 stages of the Locusts

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 04:29 PM PDT

(By Ricky Scaparo) In this segment, we will show you 4 stages of the locusts mentioned in the book of Joel and how the enemy…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Vandals Spray-Paint Church With Upside-Down Crosses, Words ‘Devil, Witch Spells’

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 12:56 PM PDT

Vandals have spray-painted a Long Island church with upside-down crosses and the words “devil” and “witch spells,” reports state. “It’s just a coincidence that Sunday…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

BREAKING NEWS: Senate Passes Sanctions Against Russia for Alleged Election Interference

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 12:52 PM PDT

The Republican-led Senate voted decisively to punish Moscow for interfering in the 2016 election by approving a wide-ranging sanctions package that targets key sectors of…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Iranian vessel in ‘unsafe’ encounter with U.S. warships…

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 12:39 PM PDT

U.S. officials told CBS News on Wednesday that an Iranian warship had shined a spotlight and laser at an American military helicopter accompanying two U.S….

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Fishermen discover world’s first two-headed porpoise…

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 12:36 PM PDT

A group of fishermen accidentally discovered the world’s first two-headed porpoise, but tossed it back into the sea for fear of getting into trouble.  The bizarre…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Germany to fingerprint 6yo asylum-seekers & monitor messenger apps over terrorism fears

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 11:14 AM PDT

The interior ministers of German states agreed that it may be necessary to fingerprint the children of asylum-seekers even as young as six, to combat…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Discovery of Mass Grave of Egyptian Child Slaves Unmistakably Echoes Israelite Exodus

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 11:08 AM PDT

An archaeologist in Egypt has discovered a cemetery full of child slaves from the time of the pharaohs, a chilling find which echoes the Biblical…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Here’s How God ‘Smacked’ Jordin Sparks Back Into Gear After She Strayed

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 11:05 AM PDT

Pop star Jordin Sparks revealed the dramatic moment that has reignited her Christian faith, sharing the details with tens of thousands of people assembled for Harvest America at the University of…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Leo Varadkar to Be Ireland’s First Openly-Homosexual Prime Minister

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 11:02 AM PDT

He is just 38. He is gay. He is the son of an Indian immigrant.  And he’s a sign of how much the Republic of…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Millions of Christians are Gearing Up for June 25th

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 10:55 AM PDT

Millions of Christians across the globe are gearing up for the second annual “Global Hymn Sing,” a large-scale effort that will bring together thousands of…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Baltimore Cops On Mandatory 12-Hour Shifts As Violence Grows…

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 10:49 AM PDT

Baltimore sees multiple deadly shootings in just a matter of hours. It was a burst of violence that forced the commissioner to make a drastic move…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Gunman Targets GOP Members in Virginia – Multiple Injuries

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 10:44 AM PDT

A gunman believed to be a supporter of former Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders sprayed a hail of bullets at a GOP baseball practice Wednesday…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

DEVELOPING: Multiple people shot in San Francisco at UPS facility…

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 10:40 AM PDT

Multiple people have been injured after a shooting at a UPS facility in the area of 17th Street and San Bruno Avenue in San Francisco,…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

High School Grad Fights Back After School Forces Her to Ax Prayer From Commencement Speech

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 10:36 AM PDT

A conservative legal firm is accusing a Pennsylvania school district of “forcing a student to alter her personal graduation remarks to remove any religious viewpoint” —…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

Ready for a Suntan in a pill? New tanning drug for the pale-skinned

Posted: 14 Jun 2017 10:33 AM PDT

After 10 years of research, scientists have come up with a drug that could help people tan without exposure to the sun, potentially reducing the…

Read more at End Time Headlines.

What is The Gospel?

Who Do You Think That I Am?

Selected Scriptures

Code: A335

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:


While Jesus was on earth there was much confusion about who He was. Some thought He was a wise man or a great prophet. Others thought He was a madman. Still others couldn’t decide or didn’t care. But Jesus said, “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30). That means He claimed to be nothing less than God in human flesh.

Many people today don’t understand that Jesus claimed to be God. They’re content to think of Him as little more than a great moral teacher. But even His enemies understood His claims to deity. That’s why they tried to stone Him to death (John 5:18; 10:33) and eventually had Him crucified (John 19:7).

C.S. Lewis observed, “You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come up with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to” (Mere Christianity [Macmillan, 1952], pp. 40-41).

If the biblical claims of Jesus are true, He is God!


God is absolutely and perfectly holy (Isaiah 6:3), therefore He cannot commit or approve of evil (James 1:13).

As God, Jesus embodied every element of God’s character. Colossians 2:9 says, “In Him all the fulness of Deity dwells in bodily form.” He was perfectly holy (Hebrews 4:15). Even His enemies couldn’t prove any accusation against Him (John 8:46)

God requires holiness of us as well. First Peter 1:16 says, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”


Our failure to obey God—to be holy—places us in danger of eternal punishment (2 Thessalonians 1:9). The truth is, we cannot obey Him because we have neither the desire nor the ability to do so. We are by nature rebellious toward God (Ephesians 2:1-3). The Bible calls our rebellion “sin.” According to Scripture, everyone is guilty of sin: “There is no man who does not sin” (1 Kings 8:46). “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). And we are incapable of changing our sinful condition. Jeremiah 13:23 says, “Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard its spots? Neither can you do good who are accustomed to doing evil.”

That doesn’t mean we’re incapable of performing acts of human kindness. We might even be involved in various religious or humanitarian activities. But we’re utterly incapable of understanding, loving, or pleasing God on our own. The Bible says, “There is none righteous, not even one; there is none who understands, there is none who seeks for God; all have turned aside, together they have become useless; there is none who does good, there is not even one” (Romans 3:10-12).

God’s holiness and justice demand that all sin be punished by death: “The soul who sins will die” (Ezekiel 18:4). That’s hard for us to understand because we tend to evaluate sin on a relative scale, assuming some sins are less serious than others. However, the Bible teaches that all acts of sin are the result of sinful thinking and evil desires. That’s why simply changing our patterns of behavior can’t solve our sin problem or eliminate its consequences. We need to be changed inwardly so our thinking and desires are holy

Jesus is the only one who can forgive and transform us, thereby delivering us from the power and penalty of sin: “There is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).

Even though God’s justice demands death for sin, His love has provided a Savior, who paid the penalty and died for sinners: “Christ … died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, in order that He might bring us to God” (1 Peter 3:18). Christ’s death satisfied the demands of God’s justice, thereby enabling Him to forgive and save those who place their faith in Him (Romans 3:26). John 3:16 says, “God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.” He alone is “our great God and Savior” (Titus 2:13).


Some people think it doesn’t matter what you believe as long as you’re sincere. But without a valid object your faith is useless

If you take poison—thinking it’s medicine—all the faith in the world won’t restore your life. Similarly, if Jesus is the only source of salvation, and you’re trusting in anyone or anything else for your salvation, your faith is useless.

Many people assume there are many paths to God and that each religion represents an aspect of truth. But Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me” (John 14:6). He didn’t claim to be one of many equally legitimate paths to God, or the way to God for His day only. He claimed to be the only way to God—then and forever.


Contemporary thinking says man is the product of evolution. But the Bible says we were created by a personal God to love, serve, and enjoy endless fellowship with Him

The New Testament reveals it was Jesus Himself who created everything (John 1:3; Colossians 1:16). Therefore He also owns and rules everything (Psalm 103:19). That means He has authority over our lives and we owe Him absolute allegiance, obedience, and worship.

Romans 10:9 says, “If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved.” Confessing Jesus as Lord means humbly submitting to His authority (Philippians 2:10-11). Believing that God has raised Him from the dead involves trusting in the historical fact of His resurrection—the pinnacle of Christian faith and the way the Father affirmed the deity and authority of the Son (Romans 1:4; Acts 17:30-31).

True faith is always accompanied by repentance from sin. Repentance is more than simply being sorry for sin. It is agreeing with God that you are sinful, confessing your sins to Him, and making a conscious choice to turn from sin and pursue holiness (Isaiah 55:7). Jesus said, “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments” (John 14:15); and “If you abide in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine” (John 8:31).

It isn’t enough to believe certain facts about Christ. Even Satan and his demons believe in the true God (James 2:19), but they don’t love and obey Him. Their faith is not genuine. True saving faith always responds in obedience (Ephesians 2:10).

Jesus is the sovereign Lord. When you obey Him you are acknowledging His lordship and submitting to His authority. That doesn’t mean your obedience will always be perfect, but that is your goal. There is no area of your life that you withhold from Him.


All who reject Jesus as their Lord and Savior will one day face Him as their Judge: “God is now declaring to men that all everywhere should repent, because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead” (Acts 17:30-31).

Second Thessalonians 1:7-9 says, “The Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire, dealing out retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. And these will pay the penalty of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power.”


Who does the Bible say Jesus is? The living God, the Holy One, the Savior, the only valid object of saving faith, the sovereign Lord, and the righteous Judge.

Who do you say Jesus is? That is the inescapable question. He alone can redeem you—free you from the power and penalty of sin. He alone can transform you, restore you to fellowship with God, and give your life eternal purpose. Will you repent and believe in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior?

Available online at: https://www.gty.org/library/articles/A335
COPYRIGHT ©2017 Grace to YouYou may reproduce this Grace to You content for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Grace to You’s Copyright Policy (http://www.gty.org/connect/copyright).

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).

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

— Augustine

This blog is an aggregator of news and information that we believe will provide articles that will keep people informed about current trends, current events, discussions and movements taking place within our church and culture.

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107,material here is distributed without profit for research and educational purposes.

A headline link on this blog post doesn’t necessarily mean that there is agreement or approval with all the views and opinions expressed within the headline linked article. Caution is also warranted with regards to the advertisements and links that are embedded within the headline linked article.

*Please note that the preceding blog post content is formed by my personal conviction, values, worldview and opinion. It is not necessarily the opinion of any entity by which I am employed, any church at which I am a member, any church which I attend. Any copyrighted material displayed or referenced is done under the doctrine of fair use.

June 15, 2017: Verse of the day


Focusing on Expectations

For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself. (3:20–21)

The underlying motivation for pursuing Christlikeness is the hope of the return of Jesus Christ. Since Christ is in heaven, those who love Him must be preoccupied with heaven, longing for Christ to return and take them to be with Him (1 Thess. 4:17).

Paul had little interest in the comforts and pleasures of this world, as the following passages indicate:

We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. (2 Cor. 4:8–10)

In everything commending ourselves as servants of God, in much endurance, in afflictions, in hardships, in distresses, in beatings, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in sleeplessness, in hunger, in purity, in knowledge, in patience, in kindness, in the Holy Spirit, in genuine love, in the word of truth, in the power of God; by the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and the left, by glory and dishonor, by evil report and good report; regarded as deceivers and yet true; as unknown yet well-known, as dying yet behold, we live; as punished yet not put to death, as sorrowful yet always rejoicing, as poor yet making many rich, as having nothing yet possessing all things. (2 Cor. 6:4–10)

Are they servants of Christ?—I speak as if insane—I more so; in far more labors, in far more imprisonments, beaten times without number, often in danger of death. Five times I received from the Jews thirty-nine lashes. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, a night and a day I have spent in the deep. I have been on frequent journeys, in dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from my countrymen, dangers from the Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers on the sea, dangers among false brethren; I have been in labor and hardship, through many sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. Apart from such external things, there is the daily pressure on me of concern for all the churches. Who is weak without my being weak? Who is led into sin without my intense concern? (2 Cor. 11:23–29)

This view led him to the conviction that made him write, “I am hard-pressed from both directions, having the desire to depart and be with Christ, for that is very much better” (1:23).

It is consistent for believers to have a heavenly focus, because our citizenship is in heaven. Politeuma (citizenship) appears only here in the New Testament, though Paul used the related verb in 1:27. It refers to the place where one has official status, the commonwealth where one’s name is recorded on the register of citizens. Though believers live in this world, they are citizens of heaven. They are members of Christ’s kingdom, which is not of this world (John 18:36). Their names are recorded in heaven (Luke 10:20; cf. Phil. 4:3; Heb. 12:23; Rev. 13:8; 21:27); their Savior is there (Acts 1:11; 1 Thess. 4:16); their fellow saints are there (Heb. 12:23); their inheritance is there (1 Peter 1:4); their reward is there (Matt. 5:12); and their treasure is there (Matt. 6:20).

Though they do not yet live in heaven, believers live in the heavenly realm (Eph. 2:6); they experience to some degree the heavenly life here on earth. They have the life of God within them, are under the rule of heaven’s King, and live for heaven’s cause.

Paul’s reference to citizenship may have been especially meaningful to the Philippians, since Philippi was a Roman colony. The Philippians were Roman citizens, though obviously living outside of Rome, just as believers are citizens of heaven living on earth.

It is from heaven that we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. To the disciples who watched as Christ ascended into heaven the angels said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven” (Acts 1:11). In John 14:2–3 Jesus Himself promised, “In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.” Because of those promises, believers are to be “awaiting eagerly the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor. 1:7), and “to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, that is Jesus, who rescues us from the wrath to come” (1 Thess. 1:10). Until He returns, believers “groan within [themselves], waiting eagerly for [their] adoption as sons, the redemption of [the] body” (Rom. 8:23).

The hope of Christ’s return provides believers with motivation, accountability, and security. In this promise there is positive motivation to be found faithful when He returns to reward believers; to be accountable to God for living lives that produce gold, silver, and precious stones instead of wood, hay, and straw (1 Cor. 3:12). There is a corresponding negative reality, as John wrote: “Watch yourselves, that you do not lose what we have accomplished, but that you may receive a full reward” (2 John 8). Finally, the promise of Christ’s return provides security, since Jesus promised, “This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day. For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day” (John 6:39–40).

Believers are not to wait for Christ’s return with attitudes of passive resignation or bored disinterest. Instead, they are to eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Believers are not waiting for an event but a Person. Apekdechomai (eagerly wait) is often used to speak of waiting for Christ’s second coming (e.g., Rom. 8:19, 23, 25; 1 Cor. 1:7; Gal. 5:5; Heb. 9:28). It describes not only eagerness, but also patience.

As noted above, Christ’s return marks the end of believers’ struggling pursuit of the elusive prize of holy perfection, for it is then that He will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory. It is then that the eagerly awaited redemption of the body will take place (Rom. 8:23). It is “when He appears [that] we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is” (1 John 3:2). Until then, the new creature (2 Cor. 5:17) is incarcerated in the unredeemed humanness (“the body of this death”; Rom. 7:24) from which it longs to be liberated.

For believers who die before Christ’s return, death means the temporary separation of the spirit from the body. The body goes into the grave, while the spirit goes immediately into the presence of God (1:21, 23; 2 Cor. 5:6, 8). Heaven is currently occupied by “the spirits of the righteous made perfect” (Heb. 12:23). Those believers who live from Pentecost to the Rapture will have their spirits joined to their resurrection bodies at the Rapture (1 Thess. 4:15–17). The Old Testament believers and those saved during the Tribulation will receive their resurrection bodies at Christ’s second coming (Dan. 12:2; Rev. 20:4).

Christ will totally transform the bodies of all believers, each group at its appointed time (cf. 1 Cor. 15:22–23), to make them fit for heaven. Believers’ bodies will have a new schematic; they will be refashioned and redesigned. Christ will change the present body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory. Like Christ’s resurrection body, believers’ resurrected bodies will be recognizable. They will be able to eat, talk, and walk, but will not have the physical restrictions of our present bodies. After His resurrection Christ appeared and disappeared at will, even entering a room whose doors were locked (John 20:19). Paul gives the most detailed description of believers’ resurrection bodies in 1 Corinthians 15:35–49:

But someone will say, “How are the dead raised? And with what kind of body do they come?” You fool! That which you sow does not come to life unless it dies; and that which you sow, you do not sow the body which is to be, but a bare grain, perhaps of wheat or of something else. But God gives it a body just as He wished, and to each of the seeds a body of its own. All flesh is not the same flesh, but there is one flesh of men, and another flesh of beasts, and another flesh of birds, and another of fish. There are also heavenly bodies and earthly bodies, but the glory of the heavenly is one, and the glory of the earthly is another. There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for star differs from star in glory. So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown a perishable body, it is raised an imperishable body; it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body. So also it is written, ‘The first man, Adam, became a living soul.’ The last Adam became a life-giving spirit. However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural; then the spiritual. The first man is from the earth, earthy; the second man is from heaven. As is the earthy, so also are those who are earthy; and as is the heavenly, so also are those who are heavenly. Just as we have borne the image of the earthy, we will also bear the image of the heavenly.

The combination of a redeemed spirit and a glorified body will enable all believers to perfectly manifest the glory of God. Sin, weakness, sorrow, disappointment, pain, suffering, doubt, fear, temptation, hate, and failure will give way to perfect joy (Matt. 25:21), pleasure (Ps. 16:11), knowledge (1 Cor. 13:12), comfort (Luke 16:25), and love (1 Cor. 13:13).

Salvation involves far more than mere deliverance from hell. God’s ultimate goal in redeeming believers is to transform their bodies into conformity with the body of His glory. They will “become conformed [summorphos; the same word translated conformity in v. 21] to the image of His Son” (Rom. 8:29; cf. 1 John 3:2). “Just as we have borne the image of the earthy, we will also bear the image of the heavenly” (1 Cor. 15:49).

Their transformed bodies will permit believers finally to be the perfect creation God intends for them to be for the joy of perfect fellowship with Him forever. Describing heaven, John wrote, “I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them’ ” (Rev. 21:3; cf. John 14:1–3; 1 Thess. 4:17). Those bodies will also allow believers to see God. In the Beatitudes Jesus said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God” (Matt. 5:8), while John wrote that in heaven “there will no longer be any curse; and the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and His bond-servants will serve Him; they will see His face, and His name will be on their foreheads” (Rev. 22:3–4). Believers’ resurrection bodies will also be perfectly suited for the eternal service they will render to God (cf. Rev. 7:15).

Lest any doubt Christ’s power to transform believers’ bodies, Paul notes that He will accomplish it by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself. Hupotassō (subject) means “to arrange in order of rank” or “to manage.” Christ will have the power to rule the millennial kingdom (Rev. 12:5, 19:15; cf. Isa. 9:6; 32:1; Zech. 14:9). By His power Christ will also transform the earth’s topography (Zech. 14:4–8) and the natural kingdom (Isa. 11:6–9). Paul’s point is that if Christ can subject the entire universe to His sovereign control (cf. 1 Cor. 15:24–27), He has the power to transform believers’ bodies into His image.

As they run the spiritual race (Heb. 12:1), believers must look to godly examples for inspiration and instruction. They must also look out for those enemies of the truth who would lead them astray. Finally, they must focus on the glorious hope that is theirs at the return of Christ—the transformation of their bodies into conformity with His. Then, regenerated fully in soul and body, they will be suited to eternal, holy glory and joy.[1]

Our Blessed Hope

Philippians 3:20

But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ.

In the early days of the Christian church the doctrine of the last things had three great points of focus: the return of Jesus Christ, the resurrection of the body, and the final judgment. Of the three the most significant was Jesus Christ’s return. This was the blessed hope of Christians; it was for this they prayed. With this thought they comforted one another in the face of sorrow, persecutions, death, and martyrdom. We can imagine that as they lay in prison, suffering and tormented, often near death, they looked for his coming and thought that perhaps in an instant and without warning Jesus would appear and call them home. As they entered the arena to face the lions or looked up to face their executioner, many would have thought with joy in their hearts, “Perhaps this is the moment in which Jesus will return; and even now, before the beasts can spring or the ax can fall, I shall be caught up to meet him.”

Unfortunately, in our day belief in the second coming of Jesus Christ has faded into a remote and sometimes irrelevant doctrine in many large segments of the Christian church. It is entirely possible that our present lack of courage and lack of joy flow from this attitude.

A Biblical Doctrine

We are told today by many, some of them within the church, that belief in the return of Jesus Christ is a preposterous doctrine or at best a “pie-in-the-sky” philosophy. But it is hard to see how any professing Christian can dismiss it.

The return of Jesus Christ is mentioned in every one of the New Testament books except Galatians and the very short books such as 2 and 3 John and Philemon. Jesus quite often spoke of his return. Mark records him as saying, “If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels” (Mark 8:38). Again, “At that time men will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory. And he will send his angels and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of the heavens” (Mark 13:26–27). John tells us that Christ’s last words to his disciples included the promise: “I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am” (John 14:2–3).

Paul’s letters are also full of the doctrine. To the Christians at Thessalonica he wrote, “For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever” (1 Thess. 4:16–17). Peter called the return of Jesus Christ our “living hope” (1 Peter 1:3). Paul called it our “blessed hope” (Titus 2:13). John wrote, “Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him” (Rev. 1:7).

It is the same in the verse that is our text in Philippians. “But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body” (3:20–21). In these verses and in many others the early Christians expressed their belief in a personal return of Jesus that was to be closely associated with the resurrection and transformation of their own bodies and a final judgment of individuals and nations. They acknowledged that their lives should be lived on a higher plane because of it.

Changed Conduct

The personal return of Jesus Christ should have a profound bearing on our own life and conduct. Lord Shaftesbury, the great English social reformer, said near the end of his life, “I do not think that in the last 40 years I have lived one conscious hour that was not influenced by the thought of our Lord’s return.” This conviction was one of the strongest motives behind his social programs.

If you are expecting the Lord’s return, then this conviction ought to alter your concern for social issues as well as other things. At the height of the racial crisis in the United States in the early 1960s, two signs hung on the wall of a restaurant in Decatur, Georgia. The first sign read, “Jesus is coming again!” The second sign directly below it said, “We reserve the right to refuse service to anybody!” The juxtaposition of the two signs was unintentionally humorous for at least two reasons. First, because they implied that the owner, who apparently was looking for the return of Jesus Christ, might refuse him service. Second, because the racial discrimination that was involved was incongruous in the light of Christ’s imminent return.

Are you looking for Jesus’ return? If you are motivated by prejudice against other Christians or others in general, whether they are black or white, rich or poor, cultured or culturally naive, whatever they may be—then the return of Jesus Christ has not made its proper impression on you. If you are contemplating some sin, perhaps a dishonest act in business, perhaps trifling with sex outside of marriage, perhaps cheating on your income tax return—then the return of Jesus Christ has not made its proper impression on you. If your life is marked by a contentious, divisive spirit in which you seek to tear down the work of another person instead of building it up—then the return of Jesus Christ has not made its proper impression on you. If you first protect your own interests and neglect to give food, water, or clothing to the needy as we are instructed to do in Christ’s name—then the return of Jesus Christ has not made its proper impression on you.

John wrote, “Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure” (1 John 3:2–3). The greatest consequence of belief in the return of the Lord Jesus Christ should be a purification of our conduct.

Hope in Suffering

Another consequence of a firm belief in the return of Jesus Christ should be a transformed understanding of suffering. For suffering strengthens our hope and makes our present fellowship with Jesus more wonderful. This is why Paul writes of the believer’s hope in Romans saying, “Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope” (Rom. 5:3–4). In Paul’s experience hope had transformed suffering, and suffering had intensified his hope.

The word “suffering,” which occurs in this verse, means any tribulation, persecution, or hardship—like that which Paul lists of himself in 2 Corinthians 11: beatings, imprisonments, stoning, shipwrecks, perils, weariness, thirst, and hunger. It includes the cruelest oppressions. The Greek word Paul used and its Latin translation carried the most vivid of images in Paul’s day. The Greek word was thlipsis, which means the kind of oppression that a conquered people would receive from a cruel conqueror. The Latin translation was based on the noun tribulum, which meant a threshing sled, and implied severe torture. A tribulum was generally several feet wide and five or six feet long and was studded with sharp spikes on the bottom; it was pulled over the grain on a threshing floor by an animal. The Latin word tribulare compared oppression to experiencing such threshing.

It is easy to see how the Christians thus conceived of their suffering. They knew themselves to be often pressed as wheat while the tribulums of the world passed over them. They knew the feel of the spikes and the lash of the flail. But they endured such suffering. They had learned that it was the way God separated the wheat in their lives from the chaff and made them more useful and more obedient servants.

All of God’s children learn this sooner or later. Certainly it was known by the persecuted prophet Jeremiah. What had persecutions done for Jeremiah? In Jeremiah 17 he intimates that they had actually drawn him closer to the Lord and strengthened him for his work. He is contrasting two types of people. The first is the person who trusts in human beings and thereby departs from the Lord. Jeremiah says this person “will be like a bush in the wastelands; he will not see prosperity when it comes. He will dwell in the parched places of the desert, in a salt land where no one lives” (v. 6). The other type of person is the one who trusts God and whose hope is in him. What is he like? Jeremiah says, “He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit” (v. 8). In other words, Jeremiah had found that suffering had strengthened his roots and had actually drawn him closer to the Lord.

All Christians should experience that. Tribulations will come. Job spoke truthfully when he said, “Yet man is born to trouble as surely as the sparks fly upward” (Job 5:7). But the Christian can have a hope in the midst of tribulation that transforms suffering and is strengthened by it.

Day of Judgment

Everything written up to this point has been encouraging. It has been intended for Christians. But there is a somber side for those who do not know Christ and who therefore do not expect him. Christ is coming; it will be a joy for Christians. But it will also mean the beginning of Christ’s judgments. These will be terrible for those who do not know him.

Christians acknowledge this every time they recite the Apostles’ Creed, for they say that Jesus shall come again from heaven “to judge the living and the dead.” Paul told the Athenians that God has “set a day when he will judge the world with justice” (Acts 17:31). In that day Jesus Christ will return to judge the nations, the false church, and individuals. Everyone will have to answer to him. Will you meet him as one judged righteous on the basis of our Lord’s death for sin and his gift of righteousness? Or will you meet him as one who trusts in your own human goodness and is therefore cut off from God’s presence forever?

It is my experience that people react in one of two ways to Christ’s judgment. Some simply disbelieve it, for they think that judgment is incompatible with the character of God. I mentioned something about the judgment of God on The Bible Study Hour once and received a letter from a woman who seemed greatly offended at the thought that a loving God could ever pronounce a judgment on anything. I wrote back asking her what she would think of a God who would let a murderer go on murdering throughout eternity, a thief go on stealing throughout eternity, a sexual pervert continue to violate other men and women throughout eternity, and other sinners to go on sinning. Certainly it is in the character of a loving and righteous God to stop such things. It may help some persons to think of the final judgment in this light and begin to find out what the Scriptures say concerning it.

The second reaction to the fact of God’s judgment comes from the unbeliever who has heard the offer of salvation by grace through the gospel but who prefers to deal with God’s justice. Pity the man who wants nothing from God but God’s justice! Justice will condemn a person to hell. The only hope for anyone lies in God’s mercy.

The result of seeking nothing but justice from God is seen in a story from the life of Abraham from the Old Testament. God told Abraham that he was about to destroy the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah for their great wickedness, and Abraham had immediately begun to think about his nephew Lot and his family who lived there. He knew that they would also be destroyed in God’s judgment, so he began to reason with God. He said, “Will you also destroy the righteous with the wicked? Suppose there are fifty righteous in the city; will you also destroy and not spare the place for the fifty righteous that are in it? Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?” God said, “If there are fifty righteous persons in the city, I will spare it.” Abraham became worried at this point because he only knew of four righteous persons himself. They were Lot, Lot’s wife, and Lot’s two daughters. He began to doubt that there were fifty. So he said, “Suppose there are only forty-five? Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?” God replied, “I will spare the city for the sake of forty-five.” Abraham bargained with God until God had agreed to spare the city for the sake of ten righteous people. But even then Abraham had not reduced the figure far enough. So after God had removed Lot and his family from Sodom, his judgment fell upon the cities.

That is what happens when the Judge of all the earth does right! Humans are condemned by God’s justice. If you seek nothing from God but justice, you will be condemned at Jesus Christ’s return. Fortunately there is no need to meet him as Judge. For the One who is coming in judgment is also the One who once came as the Savior, to die for your sin, to bear your judgment, and to meet you thereafter as your Lord, your friend, and your bridegroom. You must decide how you will meet him. The decisions of this life affect the issues of eternity.[2]

20 The recurrence of rare words in 3:20; 4:1; and 4:3 (appearing first in 1:27) marks 1:27–4:3 as a unit. The verbs in 1:27, politeuomai (“conduct yourselves [as citizens],” GK 4488; 1:27), stēkō (“stand firm,” GK 5112), and synathleō (“contending as one,” GK 5254), reappear in the same order: politeuma (nominal form, “citizenship,” GK 4487; 3:20), stēkō (“stand firm”; 4:1), and synathleō (“contended at my side”; 4:3). Paul also weaves the vocabulary from 2:6–11 into these verses and draws on that passage’s elevated style (Lincoln, 88–89), which suggests that he reaches the climax of his argument in this entire section (1:27–4:3).

Since we “eagerly await a Savior from [heaven]” (cf. 1 Th 1:10; 4:16; 5:23), that must be where the Christian’s Lord is now, and the Lord’s presence there is the reason why the Christian’s commonwealth is in heaven. By using the metaphor of a civic body, Paul reminds the Philippians that they are an outpost on earth of God’s kingdom in heaven. The metaphor evokes at least four points of comparison:

(1) Since Philippi was an outpost of Caesar’s empire, he leaves them to draw the contrasts. Caesar is not the savior, as imperial propaganda would want people to believe, but Jesus is. Paul may deliberately allude to popular names of Nero—“Lord” and “Savior”—to make the point that Caesar is not Lord.

(2) The metaphor evokes the rights and privileges of citizenship. Philippian Christians who may have been granted the honor of Roman citizenship will need to recognize that their heavenly citizenship is infinitely greater and to evaluate their status in the same way that Paul evaluated his status as a Jew. The least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than any in the kingdom of Rome. If they are dual citizens, their allegiance to the Lord of heaven is to outweigh all other commitments. If they are not legal citizens of any earthly city, then they should know that they are full citizens of a heavenly commonwealth, with all its perquisite rights and privileges. In this body of citizens, all members share full and equal rights.

(3) In Greek thought, a citizen should submerge his own interests and profit to that of the city. Paul’s metaphor reminds Christians that as citizens of heaven they should subordinate their self-interest to the welfare of the community to the point of self-sacrifice.

(4) Roman colonies were set up as “miniatures” of Rome (Gellius, Attic Nights 16.13.9) to foster the majesty of Roman culture, religion, and values. The Christian commonwealth has a different constitution and different laws, and Christians are to exemplify the values of the heavenly realm. Christ’s resurrection establishes a new city (polis) and an alternative political jurisdiction that challenges the values and the methods of the empire. The empire tyrannizes, enslaves, and crucifies its subjects. Christians are not to imitate the crucifiers but the crucified one. They are to accept suffering rather than to inflict it. If one is conformed to the kings of this world, one is conformed to a way of death; if one is conformed to Christ, one is conformed to a way that brings life.

In a world of conflicting powers, Christians await the Savior’s return to rescue them from death-dealing powers. They are not to place their trust in Caesar to protect them from enemy hordes and death through his military power but in God’s power to raise the dead and destroy death. Christ was obedient to death but now reigns with all power (2:6–11) and will come to effect the rescue and vindication of those who belong to him, as God effected the same for him (Lincoln, 107). Christians must wait patiently and faithfully for his return.[3]

[1] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (2001). Philippians (pp. 259–263). Chicago: Moody Press.

[2] Boice, J. M. (2000). Philippians: an expositional commentary (pp. 214–219). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.

[3] Garland, D. E. (2006). Philippians. In T. Longman III (Ed.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Ephesians–Philemon (Revised Edition) (Vol. 12, p. 248). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.