Daily Archives: June 16, 2018

June 16: Not Perfect?

Ezra 1:1–2:70; 1 John 3:5–10; Psalm 106:1–15

Sometimes sin can discourage us to the point that we loathe ourselves. At first glance, John’s letter seems to encourage this. Addressing a struggling church community, John seems to call for perfection: “And you know that that one was revealed in order that he might take away sins, and in him there is no sin. Everyone who resides in him does not sin. Everyone who sins has neither seen him nor known him” (1 John 3:5–6). Does this mean that people who struggle with sin are unable to know God?

In his letter, John is actually addressing the false idea that was rampant in the community he addressed—that Christ’s sacrifice had covered sin, and therefore it was permissible to keep sinning. This is an issue that Paul addresses in his letter to the Roman Christians: “Should we go on sinning then, that grace may increase? May it never be!” (Rom 6:2). John answers the same way. He’s not saying that any sin indicates an inability to know God—he’s addressing the heart of the practice of sin (1 John 3:8).

Unchecked sin is an offense against God—it’s rebellion against Him and an attack on His character. Before we were brought into relationship with God, we were characterized by enslavement to sin. Through Christ’s sacrifice, we’re in relationship with Him, and our lives begin to reflect our new identity in Him. What should our lives look like now? John gives us an idea later in the chapter: “Everyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, namely, the one who does not love his brother” (1 John 3:10). Instead of rampant disobedience, then, the practice of “the children of God” is righteousness and love for others.

Though sin is still present in our lives, and we may be discouraged by it, we are no longer defined by it. Rather, we desire a new type of obedience and love, which God works in us.

Does your perspective on sin need to change? How can your actions reflect your freedom from sin?

Rebecca Van Noord[1]


[1] Barry, J. D., & Kruyswijk, R. (2012). Connect the Testaments: A One-Year Daily Devotional with Bible Reading Plan. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

The Demonic World Council Of Churches Joins With The Vatican To Promote Forced Global Migration Of Illegals — Now The End Begins

The World Council of Churches has announced a joint venture with the Vatican to co-host a meeting next September on “migration, xenophobia, and politically motivated populism.”

“And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.” Revelation 18:4 (KJV)

EDITOR’S NOTE: As Israel was becoming a nation again back in 1948 in fulfillment of Bible prophecy, Billy Graham was asked: “What do you expect the World Council of Churches to do this August when they visit Copenhagen?” He replied: “I believe they are going to nominate the Antichrist!” That was back when Billy was mostly a Bible believer and had no issue with drawing the line in the sand when it came to exposing and preaching against false religions and movements like the WCC. But by 1952 and all into the 1960’s , Graham left his strong doctrinal stance and made alliances with not only the WCC but with the Vatican as well. Today we rightly recognize Billy Graham as the father of the Laodicean eccumenical movement. In 2018, the globalist group World Council of Churches is a proud partner with the Whore of Babylon as they seek to preach the George Soros gospel of open borders and forced migration of illegals. You can find dozens of articles and videos showing Pope Francis preaching on climate change, prosperity, nuclear war, wealth redistribution, or any other social justice topic you can think of. But you will never hear him preach the gospel of the grace of God that lost people might be saved. Not one time. But you will hear Francis say that a ‘personal relationship’ with Jesus Christ is ‘dangerous and harmful‘. 

The World Council of Churches said it is partnering with the Vatican department for Promoting Integral Human Development in preparing the conference to be held September 17-20 as part of ongoing work toward “peace-building and migration.” The General of the WCC, Rev. Olav Fykse Tveit, said the meeting would be a “very useful and significant workshop to dig a bit deeper” into the problems of xenophobia as an expression of populism, as well as its links to racism, conflict, and violence in countries around the world.

Last September, the Vatican launched a two-year campaign to change people’s minds about migrants and to encourage a more welcoming attitude toward them worldwide.

“Brothers, we mustn’t be afraid to share the journey! We mustn’t be afraid to share the hope!” Francis said in his weekly General Audience on September 27, in which he inaugurated the new project, titled “Share the Journey.”

Billy Graham, the father of the modern-day ecumenical movement

billy-graham-false-gospel-church-laodicea-catholic-church-pope-john-paul-mormons-wideness-nteb

The global Catholic charities network Caritas Internationalis spearheaded the campaign in its aim to promote awareness and action on behalf of migrants and refugees, assisting them in building connections with local communities. According to Caritas, the project was launched as a response to Pope Francis’s frequent summons for a “culture of encounter.”

Our world “faces not a migration crisis, but a crisis of global solidarity,” Caritas said on its website. “Be part of a worldwide campaign to reach out to migrants, change perceptions, open hearts and minds, and strengthen the bonds that unite us all.”

The stated goal of the project is to shed light on both the challenges and effects of migration at every stage of the journey to provoke a “shift in thinking” on the issue.

Part of this shift in thinking involves dispelling common “myths about migration,” the organization declared, before laying out “some common myths around migration and the facts behind the myths.”

Caritas said these myths include the idea that there are more migrants than ever before, that migrants live off welfare benefits and steal jobs from citizens, that closing borders will stem migrant flows, and that “people from poor countries migrate to rich ones.”

This is what it looks like when millions of migrants come to your country

If the WCC and the Vatican are successful, this is what an average day in America or your country will look like. Makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, don’t it?

The pope himself has lent his moral weight to the pro-immigration crusade, often speaking about the positive side to migration. Last Thursday, Francis called for a “change in mindset” regarding immigration, insisting in a message that migrants are not a threat to society but, rather, a source of enrichment.

In his message to the second Holy See-Mexico Conference on International Migration in the Vatican, Francis praised the work of the “International Community” aimed at the adoption of two global compacts, one on refugees and the other on “safe, orderly and regular migration.”

The pontiff also sought to counter a negative narrative on mass migration, calling for a shift in priorities and mentality.

“This demands a change in mindset,” he said. “We must move from considering others as threats to our comfort to valuing them as persons whose life experience and values can contribute greatly to the enrichment of our society. For this to happen, our basic approach must be to encounter the other, to welcome, to know and to acknowledge him or her,” he said. source

via The Demonic World Council Of Churches Joins With The Vatican To Promote Forced Global Migration Of Illegals — Now The End Begins

June 16 Taking Spiritual Inventory

“This is pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father … to keep oneself unstained by the world” (James 1:27).

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God doesn’t tolerate compromise with the world.

Keeping yourself “unstained by the world” is an important test of your spiritual condition. The Apostle John said, “Do not love the world, nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him” (1 John 2:15). At first glance that might sound contradictory since God Himself so loved the world that He gave His Son to die for it (John 3:16). But John 3:16 refers to the inhabited earth—the people for whom Christ died. First John 2:15 refers to the evil world system in which we live, which includes the lifestyles, philosophies, morality, and ethics of our sinful culture. That world and everything it produces is passing away (1 John 2:16–17).

James 4:4 says, “You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.” Those are strong words, but compromise is intolerable to God. You can’t be His friend and a friend of the world at the same time!

Separation from the world is the final element of true religion mentioned in James 1. Before progressing to chapter 2, take a final spiritual inventory based on the checklist provided in verses 26–27: 1. Do you control your tongue? Review the quality of your conversation often. What does it reveal about the condition of your heart? Are there speech habits you need to change? 2. Do you demonstrate love for others? Do you have a sincere desire to help those in need? When you do help, are your motives pure, or are you simply trying to soothe your conscience or make others think more highly of you? 3. Do you remain unstained by the world? What is your attitude toward the world? Do you want to win it for Christ and remain unstained by its evil influences, or do you want to get as much out of it as you possibly can?

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Suggestions for Prayer:  If your spiritual inventory reveals any sinful motives or practices, confess them, and begin to change today.

For Further Study: Reread James 1:19–27, reviewing the principles you’ve learned from those verses.[1]


[1] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1993). Drawing Near—Daily Readings for a Deeper Faith (p. 180). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

JUNE 16 THE MYSTERY IN WORSHIP

Behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed.

Exodus 3:2

Consider the experience of Moses in the desert as he beheld the fire that burned in the bush without consuming it. Moses had no hesitation in kneeling before the bush and worshiping God. Moses was not worshiping a bush; it was God and His glory dwelling in the bush whom Moses worshiped!

This is an imperfect illustration, for when the fire departed from that bush, it was a bush again.

But this Man, Christ Jesus, is eternally the Son. In the fullness of this mystery, there has never been any departure, except for that awful moment when Jesus cried, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46). The Father turned His back for a moment when the Son took on Himself that putrifying mass of sin and guilt, dying on the cross not for His own sin, but for ours.

The deity and the humanity never parted, and to this day, they remain united in that one Man.

When we kneel before Him and say, “My Lord and my God, Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever,” we are talking to God!

Lord, I may not have seen You in a burning bush like Moses did, but I still kneel before You and worship You as my King.[1]


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

Top Weekly Stories from ChristianNews.net for 06/16/2018

Controversial Video Features TV Host Talking to Children About ‘Gay Pride’: ‘It’s the Celebration of Sexual Diversity’   Jun 13, 2018 12:17 am

Screenshot A video recorded for “Pride Month” is raising concern as it features a Canadian television host talking to young children about “gay pride” and explaining to the boys and girls that she herself questioned her sexuality as a child in liking a female actress, who she watched nude in a film “several times.” The video, which has been viewed over two…

Continue reading the story


California’s Deadly STD Epidemic Sets Record   Jun 12, 2018 02:16 pm

Photo Credit: George Hodan/Public Domain Pictures (Washington Post) — Diagnoses of sexually transmitted diseases hit a record high in California last year—with sometimes deadly consequences, according to preliminary state data. More than 300,000 cases of gonorrhea, chlamydia and syphilis—the most common sexually transmitted bacterial infections—were…

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Netflix Announces Animated ‘Drag Queen’ Series: ‘They’re Queer, and They’re Going to Save the World’   Jun 13, 2018 12:28 pm

“Netflix has sunk to a new low.” That’s one of a number of comments of concern following the popular movie outlet’s presentation of a teaser for a new cartoon series called “Super Drags,” which centers on the fictional tales of drag queen superheroes. “They’re here, they’re queer, and they’re going to save the world. Super Drags, a new animated series coming…

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Spain Fines Christian Television Station 6,000 Euro for ‘Homophobic Content’   Jun 15, 2018 06:58 am

(Evangelical Focus) — The National Commission of Markets and Competition (CNMC, in Spanish) has fined Revelation TV 6,000 Euro. The media group has its headquarters in the UK, defines itself as a Christian ministry, and broadcasts in Spain through satellite since 2012. According to the CNMC, the fine comes after an individual complained to the state agency about…

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Children’s Cartoon ‘Drag Tots’ to Feature ‘Baby Drag Queens’ Voiced by Cast of ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’   Jun 14, 2018 12:23 pm

YouTube Screenshot A new animated series akin to “The Powerpuff Girls,” but featuring cartoon “baby drag queens” voiced by cast members of “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” is set to appear on the World of Wonder’s WOW Presents Plus this month, being at least the second release in 2018 featuring animated cross-dressing men. “Drag Tots” tells the story of four pint-sized…

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Library System Hosting ‘Over-the-Top’ Story Hour With Men, Women ‘Strutting Their Stuff’ in Drag   Jun 11, 2018 09:01 pm

SAINT PAUL, Minn. — A library system in Minnesota is raising concern as it recently announced that it will be hosting three “over-the-top” drag story hours in June and July, billing the event as being geared toward families and suitable for babies, toddlers, preschoolers and teens. “Come meet some fabulous drag queens and kings at the library! They will read…

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CrossFit Researcher Fired for Tweeting ‘Celebrating Pride Is a Sin’   Jun 11, 2018 01:07 pm

YouTube Screenshot HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — A CrossFit legal researcher who supported an Indianapolis CrossFit owner’s decision to cancel a homosexual pride workout has been fired for expressing on his personal Twitter page that celebrating pride is a sin against God. According to reports, trainers for CrossFit Infiltrate had planned a workout to coincide with…

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North Korean Ex-Detainee Was Told His ‘Hostile Act Against Regime’ Was Prayer   Jun 11, 2018 10:35 am

(World Watch Monitor) — One of the American citizens who was released by North Korea and returned to the United States last month was told by his captors he was detained because of the “hostile act” of prayer. Kim Hak Song was arrested on a train from North Korea’s capital Pyongyang to China in May last year for allegedly having committed hostile acts…

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Sexually Transmitted Diseases Remain on the Rise in Washington State   Jun 12, 2018 08:27 am

(The Daily Chronicle) — The Washington State Department of Health recently released their statewide report on sexually transmitted diseases for 2017 and the results are not pretty. Chlamydia was the most commonly reported STD, with rates highest in women 20-24 years old. However, statistics indicate that overall STD rates are highest among gay, bisexual, and…

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Judge Rules Iowa Cannot Deny Medicaid Coverage for Gender Dysphoria-Related Surgeries   Jun 12, 2018 05:00 pm

DES MOINES, Iowa — A state judge has ruled that the Iowa Department of Human Services (DHS) cannot exclude gender dysphoria-related operations from Medicaid coverage, asserting that “medical thinking and Iowa law have changed,” and that the state regulation that prohibited coverage for such operations “has not kept pace with law and medicine.” “The outdated…

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Weekend Snapshot — Top Stories This Week for June 6, 2018

The DoJ IG Report: Comey and His Corrupt Clinton Cronies

Washington Post: “The report is a blistering rebuke of Comey.”

Geopolitics: Trump Plays Chess, MSM Plays Checkers

Trump is closer to disarming the NoKo regional and global threat than any president in 60 years.

What Did Trump Say? What Did He Mean?

He’s surely guilty of hyperbolic bluster, but what he’s doing is far more important than how he says it.

Why Canada and Germany Deserved a G7 Smackdown

Both nations are failing miserably to uphold their NATO commitments.

The Importance of Free Trade

Trump’s America-first agenda is welcome, but he must take care to ensure beneficial negotiations.

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Consumer Confidence Soars

Economists adjust their expectations higher as retail sales numbers come in strong.

Small Business Optimism Through the Roof

Business optimism soars to 1980s levels. Good news for America. Good news for Trump.

Bill Maher Hopes for a Recession

He believes that democracy is dying under Trump. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Amnesty vs. America First

Congressional Republicans face a stark choice with upcoming immigration legislation.

Trump Crackdown on Illegals May Force Dems’ Hand

AG Sessions is leading a new charge of border enforcement and tackling visa overstays.

Philosophical Trends in Our Suicidal Culture

The suicide rate is up and life expectancy is down. What are the broader causes?

Rainbow Mafia to Christians: ‘Shut Up’

Two episodes of gross intolerance illustrate the real agenda of “Pride Month.”

Snopes Deceives Again With CA Water Rationing ‘Fact-Check’

“The laws do not render it illegal for Californians to do laundry and take showers on the same day.”

Dads Attempt to Stay Relevant

In the modern feminist portrayal, a father is almost as useful as one’s appendix.

Quote Of The Week

“I have decided some changes need to be made to our Constitution. Like dusting it off and putting it back to use like it was intended.” —Ryan Fournier

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Canada’s Supreme Court bans Christians from practicing law in Canada

WINTERY KNIGHT

Canada election results 2015 Canada election results 2015

The headlines is a bit broad, but give me a minute, and I’ll explain what the judges decided. For one thing, it’s only in Ontario and British Columbia where the ban is in effect. Also, the basis of the ban is that Christians cannot be lawyers if they believe that sex before marriage  or outside of marriage is morally wrong. Let’s take a look at an article from the less leftist of Canada’s National newspapers, the National Post.

Excerpt:

Trinity Western University suffered a stinging loss in the Supreme Court of Canada on Friday, which found that law societies in B.C. and Ontario were justified in not accrediting the university’s prospective law school because of its policy on premarital sex. But no one should harbour any illusions that the pain will be limited to the small Christian school in B.C.’s Fraser Valley.

The impact of…

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“Things Will Get Ugly” – South African Political Leader Threatens War if White-Owned Land Not Returned to Black People — The Gateway Pundit

 

In 2011 South Africa youth leader Julius Malema told his supporters that the white farmer’s land must be shared by all black Africans.

He was arrested for playing “Kill the Boer (white man)” song at his rallies. The song is a call to violence against white South Africans.

Julius Malema later founded the Economic Freedom Fighters, a South African political party.

Earlier this year Malema called for new law to confiscate land from white farmers.

Azania Afrika@SAYoungLion

It’s relevant and important to share CiC Julius Malema speech on expropriation of land without compensation

The South African Parliament voted to confiscate land from white farmers without payment in February.

In March Julius Malema called on his followers to go after the white man and cut the throat of whiteness.

Earlier this week Julius Malema told white people he won’t kill them… At least not yet.

Via Zero Hedge:

And now Julius Malema threatened war if white-owned land was not returned to black people.
Via Business Daily:

EFF leader Julius Malema has warned that land must be returned to black people or things will get ugly.

He was speaking during an interview as part of a documentary by the Turkish Radio and Television Broadcasting Corporation. Malema argued that‚ 24 years into democracy‚ “black people were worse off than they were under apartheid”.

He said there would be war if land was not returned to black people. “If things are going the way they are‚ there will be a revolution in this country.”

via “Things Will Get Ugly” – South African Political Leader Threatens War if White-Owned Land Not Returned to Black People — The Gateway Pundit

Jane Fonda Tells Hollywood Elitists It’s Time To Take Back ‘Our Government’ — The Gateway Pundit

When Obama was president, liberal celebrities were constantly visiting the White House for lavish parties, but now that’s all over. This might explain why so many of these folks don’t like Trump. They think DC belongs to them and was taken away. Wouldn’t that also explain why Jane Fonda used the term ‘our government’ at a recent event?

Breitbart reports:

Jane Fonda to Hollywood Elite: Time to Take ‘Back Our Government’

Actress and political activist Jane Fonda warned a crowd of Hollywood elites of the “existential crisis” facing America under the Trump administration, urging them that the only solution is “taking back our government.”

After winning the Female EMA Lifetime Achievement Award at the Environmental Media Association (EMA) first Honors Benefit Gala, Fonda said that Democrats taking the House in the upcoming mid-terms elections was crucial to saving the country.

“This is an existential crisis that we’re in,” said the 80-year-old Grace and Frankie star. “We have to do everything we can to take back the house in November. If anything can save us, it’s gonna be taking back our government.”

Other actresses present at the ceremony included Elizabeth Olsen and Fonda’s Grace and Frankie co-star Lily Tomlin, who told The Hollywood Reporter: “[Trump] is dangerous — he’s unfortunately dangerous to the planet, if nothing else. If we could raise Trump’s consciousness, that would be helpful.”

What Jane Fonda and others in Hollywood can’t seem to grasp is that the government belongs to all of the American people, not just them.

via Jane Fonda Tells Hollywood Elitists It’s Time To Take Back ‘Our Government’ — The Gateway Pundit

Is Your Church Doing Spiritual Formation? (Important Reasons Why it Shouldn’t) — Lighthouse Trails Inc

By Lighthouse Trails Editors Is your church involved in a Spiritual Formation program? If so, you might want to ask the question, what exactly is Spiritual Formation? It’s a fair question, and one that, if not asked, could end up surprising you when your church changes in ways you never imagined. A Christianity Today article … [Read more…]

via Is Your Church Doing Spiritual Formation? (Important Reasons Why it Shouldn’t) — Lighthouse Trails Inc

Viva le resistance: How political bias infected FBI Trump, Clinton probes — Christian Research Network

“In the end, Horowitz pronounced himself ‘deeply troubled’ by some of the expressions of bias. He was particularly troubled by Strzok’s ‘We’ll stop it’ comment, which Horowitz concluded was ‘not only indicative of a biased state of mind but, even more seriously, implies a willingness to take official action to impact the presidential candidate’s electoral prospects.’”

(Byron York – Washington Examiner)  It didn’t take long for defenders of the FBI’s Trump-Russia investigation to claim that the Justice Department inspector general’s report found no bias in the bureau’s conduct of the Hillary Clinton email investigation, nor in the early days of the Trump-Russia probe.

“There was no bias in the FBI,” Rep. Jerrold Nadler of New York, ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, said on MSNBC.

“No bias at the FBI,” Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell of California, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, said on Fox News.

“No evidence … [that the FBI] acted on the basis of political bias,” Rep. Adam Schiff of California, top Democrat on the Intelligence Committee, said in a statement.

The comments had an otherworldly feel to them, because the IG report not only found, but documented, at great length, an FBI culture that was infested with political bias — specifically a political bias against President Trump.

The inspector general, Michael Horowitz, discovered the bias when he examined the internal communications of FBI officials involved in the Clinton and Trump probes. (The new report specifically covers the email investigation, but also touches on the beginning of the Trump investigation, because they overlapped in time and because a significant number of key FBI officials were involved in both.) Horowitz discovered a group of officials, some of them in key positions in the Clinton-Trump investigations, who made no secret of their support of Clinton and opposition to Trump.

“Our task was made significantly more difficult because of text and instant messages exchanged on FBI devices and systems by five FBI employees involved in the [Clinton email] investigation,” Horowitz wrote in the executive summary of the report. “These messages reflected political opinions in support of former Secretary Clinton and against her then political opponent Donald Trump. Some of these text messages and instant messages mixed political commentary with discussions about the [Clinton email] investigation, and raised concerns that political bias may have impacted investigative decisions.”

The conduct of the five FBI employees — including some in very high-ranking positions — “brought discredit to themselves,” Horowitz concluded, and also “sowed doubt” about the FBI’s conduct of the Clinton investigation and beyond.

The five include the now-famous FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI attorney Lisa Page, but also three others, not named in the report but referred to as Agent 1, Agent 5, and FBI Attorney 2.

The single most devastating statement in the report, of course, is from Strzok. When Page, the high-ranking FBI lawyer with whom he was having an affair, texted, “[Trump’s] not ever going to become president, right? Right?!” Strzok responded, “No. No he’s not. We’ll stop it.” View article →

via Viva le resistance: How political bias infected FBI Trump, Clinton probes — Christian Research Network

After Transgender Bathroom Boycott Fiasco, Retailer Target Rolls Out LGBTQ Pride Month Marketing Aimed At Children — Now The End Begins

As if you needed one more reason to avoid Target after they decided men can use their women’s bathrooms and changing areas, they’ve doubled down on the feel-good virtue-signaling cause du jour that is Pride Month.

“Therefore pride compasseth them about as a chain; violence covereth them as a garment.” Psalm 73:6 (KJV)

EDITOR’S NOTE: I have always found it interesting that the LGBTQ movement chose to identify themselves with the word ‘pride’. Not only is homosexuality condemned in the Bible, but pride is also condemned as well. Not only that, in multiple verses, pride is connected directly with the Devil whose original sin against God was the sin of pride that we see in Isaiah 14. Every June in America is ‘Pride Month’, where the LGBTQ is celebrated by corporate America. This year, Target, the same folks who lost $10 billion dollars in the infamous transgender ‘bathroom boycott‘ episode now bring you LGBTQ ‘pride gear’ for children. 

Yes, it’s that wonderful time of year when your Main Street is overrun with floating sex toys and guys wearing half-pants and walking other men on leashes to prove that the gay community is just like us proud of themselves or something.

I always thought embracing the vice of “pride” as a motto was risky. It’s one of the seven deadly sins, after all. Does anyone say to themselves when they have a baby, gee I hope he/she grows up to be prideful and vain! Embracing “pride” as your motto seems like you’re tempting fate, doesn’t it? Will the fat-acceptance crowd choose “Gluttony!” for their appreciation month? Maybe those of us with anger issues should grab the month of October for “Wrath Month!” It’s sure easier than restraining your darker inclinations. I explode with anger and rage! Celebrate me!

target-lgbtq-pride-month-01

And yet there is an entire month now dedicated to pride and we’re all supposed to get on board… or else. PJM’s Paula Bolyard wrote a devastating synopsis of what has occurred and what’s to come for Christians in this current climate: They’re Here, They’re Queer, and Now They’re Coming for Christians — and for Our Jobs. Brace yourself, for there is no good news. You can’t even enjoy a chicken sandwich anymore without betraying your doubleplusungood alliances, you bigot!

And now Target is going to harass you and your kids with rainbow pride displays from here to eternity.

But this won’t be enough for the Gaystappo. It’s never enough! Don’t you know that? The Hallmark card industry still hasn’t been brought to heel so… inequality! Rampant homophobia! Cats and dogs living together! #Resist!

Mi chele@MicheSparklz

@Target going after little kids about sexual orientation is pretty low. You are adding to their confusion. LEAVEKIDSALONE 🌈

Is this a required activity when you work at Target now? And what happens if you respectfully decline to celebrate pridefulness because your religion says it’s deadly? And speaking of getting offended, this is an actual ad put out by Target, the same people who claim to love gay people. Are they insane? Why are LGBTQs not offended at this horrific stereotype of a gay man? I know a lot of gay men. Absolutely none of them look or act like this. Zero. In fact, I was speaking to one of my friends (who has to remain anonymous or lose his job, friends and life) in “the community” about this issue and he said, “Don’t even lump me in that group. Can I go from being bisexual to being a whatever just so I don’t get lumped in?”

It’s interesting that the libertarian and conservative gays in the community have been forced into a political closet from which they aren’t allowed to “come out” lest they face outright persecution. But Love Wins! (and sometimes it wins hundreds of thousands of dollars when bankrupting Christian mom and pop shops that won’t bake cakes!). Love is really what this is all about. source

via After Transgender Bathroom Boycott Fiasco, Retailer Target Rolls Out LGBTQ Pride Month Marketing Aimed At Children — Now The End Begins

HERE IT IS: The Top 10 Different Reasons The IG’s Report On the Clinton Email ‘Matter’ Is Flawed – Obama’s Deep State Runs Deep — The Gateway Pundit

Guest post by Joe Hoft

 

We reported in January that “DOJ Inspector General Michael HorowitzHas the Potential to Be the Greatest Inspector in US History – He Also Could Be Deep State Hack”. 

We received the answer this Thursday and our verdict – Although the IG’s report includes some obvious and already released information about the criminal actions of Hillary Clinton and Obama’s DOJ and FBI, it overall fails in many respects to share an accurate story.  Therefore, based on the report, our assessment is that the DOJ’s IG is just another Deep State Hack!

We reported in January –

Many in the media are getting excited about the upcoming release of the IG’s report into his investigation of abuses at the DOJ. But if it turns out that Horowitz is part of the deep state, the report may be disappointing.

Is IG Horowitz a Good Guy?

There’s reason to believe that Horowitz is a good guy. Last week Horowitz announcedthat he located the text messages after the FBI said they were lost –

In a letter to congressional leaders, Inspector General Michael Horowitz said his office “succeeded in using forensic tools” to recover messages between senior FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page during a key five-month period ending the day special counsel Robert Mueller III was appointed to investigate possible coordination between the Kremlin and Trump’s campaign. The missing messages have sparked a political firestorm in recent days, as GOP leaders and the president have questioned how the FBI failed to retain them.

Mueller hired both Strzok and Page on his team of Trump-Russia investigators.  They were part of the biased group of far left Obama and Clinton supporters hired by Mueller.  Strzok was removed from the team after his text messages were selected in an investigation carried out by the IG.  When identified, the IG notified Mueller who then removed Strzok from his team.  The claim was that Strzok was biased against President Trump and removed didn’t hold water because Mueller’s whole team was that way.  We now know that the text messages between lovers Strzok and Page are filled with evidence of more sinister actions involving protecting Hillary Clinton from the crimes she committed and framing President Trump for the crimes he didn’t commit.

IG Horowitz has taken actions to date related to Strzok text messages that appear to show that he is a good guy. But what is missing?

Is IG Horowitz a Bad Guy?

Horowitz was nominated by President Obama in July 2011 to be Inspector General of the DOJ.  Before this he was at Harvard where he was groomed by the likes of individuals like former corrupt US Representative Barney Frank.  Prior to working in private practice, Mr. Horowitz worked in DOJ from 1991 to 2002. In the early 1990s, he worked for former fired FBI Director Comey while the two of them were in the Southern District of New York.

The fact that Horowitz was IG at the DOJ since 2012 under the Obama Administration is concerning. There is no evidence that he ordered an inspection into AG Lynch when it was reported that she met with President Clinton on a tarmac in 2016 and then a week later when Hillary Clinton was given a pass by crooked FBI Director Comey.  We don’t know that the IG looked into any number of Obama era crimes and corrupt actions.  We don’t know that he looked into the reasons for why the DOJ is delaying emails and documents to Congress or Judicial Watch concerning scandals during the Obama years.  The biggest and highest risk areas of the Obama era were never touched or never had any issues identified and reported to the public.

When crooked Rod Rosenstein was in front of Congress he kept referring to the IG’s pending report into the DOJ and Rosenstein acted as if he knew that IG Horowitz was going to give him and the DOJ a pass.

IG Horowitz stated that he has located all the text messages that the FBI reported as missing but we really don’t know yet whether that is true. We also don’t know what is in his report into DOJ abuse. Yesterday Horowitz cancelled his meeting in front of Congress today after Congress sent the four page FISA report to the President for release.  Did the IG cancel because he has to determine what is in the FISA memo so that his investigation’s report is not too far out of line?

Joe Hoft@joehoft

@TheLastRefuge2 the verdict still out on the IG – good or bad cop?

TheLastRefuge@TheLastRefuge2

Remember the batting order. Memo release puts Nunes on Second base (with steal)… Chuck Grassley at the plate, and Bob Goodlatte warming up on deck.

[IG Horowitz is on dugout steps]

View image on Twitter

Time will tell but odds would suggest that Horowitz is just another deep state hack. Obama was so corrupt!  Drain the swamp!

Others were more optimistic than we were about the IG and his report and now we know that we were right!  Horowitz and his team are Deep State! 

Here is a list of 10 Reasons from Thursday’s report that support our conclusion –

1. In the IG’s Report whenever the IG found it necessary to address the judgements, decisions and interpretations of the law, the IG sides with the FBI, DOJ and Clinton team every time. Horowitz and team show an effort to side with these entities and their actions and even provide excuses rather than disagree with their obvious flawed decisions and actions.

In the Executive Summary on page ii alone the IG says –

We found that the prosecutors provided justifications…We found that one of the reasons for not using the grand jury for testimony involved concerns about exposing grand jurors to classified information…We found that the reasons for not doing so were based on limitations…We found that these decisions were occurring at a time when Comey and the Midyear team had already concluded that there was likely no prosecutable case and believed it was unlikely the culling laptops would change the outcome of the investigation…We found that, by the date of her interview, the Midyear team and Comey had concluded that the evidence did not support criminal charges…We found no persuasive evidence that Mills’s or Samuelson’s presence influenced Clinton’s interview.”

2. The IG’s response to the rationale of the FBI making a decision to not to bring Hillary to court for maintaining classified emails on her private server is severely flawed. The IG writes on page iv of the Executive Summary –

They concluded that Section 793(f)(1) likely required a state of mind that was “so gross as to almost suggest deliberate intention,” criminally reckless, or “something that falls just short of being willful,” as well as evidence that the individuals who sent emails containing classified information “knowingly” included or transferred such information onto unclassified systems.”

Even the far-left New York Times reported that the law doesn’t require intent –

The relevant statute places a special burden on public officials to safeguard national secrets, making it a crime to remove national defense information from its “proper place of custody” even through mere “gross negligence.” There is no requirement of finding specific intent.

3. The IG notes on page ii reports that the FBI in the Hillary investigation –

Sought to obtain evidence whenever possible through consent but also used compulsory process, including grand jury subpoenas, search warrants, and 2703(d) orders (court orders for non-content email information) to obtain various evidence. We found that the prosecutors provided justifications for the preference for consent that were supported by Department and FBI policy and practice;

However, a former FBI Agent stated in 2017 that –

Never, I repeat never, in my 25-year career have I or any FBI agent known to me investigated a criminal case without the use of a federal grand jury, federal grand jury subpoenas, search warrants, etc.

Search warrants and/or subpoenas should have been executed at Clinton’s residences in Chappaqua and Washington and at Platte River.

The fact that this is coming out now is shocking.  Why did the FBI and IG until now withhold information that subpoenas were used in the Hillary investigation and what was subpoenaed?  When was it subpoenaed?  Why was the IG ok with the fact that Hillary was never subpoenaed in front of a jury?  Why is the IG not more transparent on this new issue?

4. The IG ends up agreeing with the FBI’s story regarding Hillary’s emails and ignores the significance of some of the emails found on her serverThe IG glosses over the fact that some of the emails on Hillary’s server were of the highest of classification categories. Documents like these are maintained in super controlled environments where an individual must have top clearance to review.  Why does the IG seem to ignore this fact?

5. The IG noted that he and his team did not recover all of the corrupt Strzok and Page text messages. A few months ago when Congress requested the text messages, the corrupt DOJ and FBI delayed and delayed and then finally shared some of the messages. Then when pressed corrupt AG Sessions’ DOJ and FBI announced that the text messages had be deleted and they no longer had them.  When that happened the question was raised, why did IG Horowitz not announce that he didn’t receive them?  A short time later the IG announced that he had the Strzok and Page texts.

Now we find out in the (highly unlikely and questionable) report from the IG that he does not have any more of the Strzok – Page texts.  It is simply unbelievable that the IG and his team did not have all the texts at some point in the investigation and if they did not have them, why was Congress not fully disclosed to this fact? 

6. When the IG discusses the meeting in Arizona between impeached President Bill Clinton and Obama’s AG Lynch he neglects to highlight that the only emails released related to the meeting from FBI agents didn’t question the reasonableness of the meeting. Emails released since that date requested by Judicial Watch show the FBI was only interested in finding out who reported the meeting, not why the meeting occurred or the legality of the meeting with the Hillary ‘matter’ in the works at that time.

Judicial Watch today released 29 pages of Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) documents related to the June 27, 2016, tarmac meeting between former Attorney General Loretta Lynch and former President Bill Clinton. The documents show that FBI officials were more concerned about leaks than the actual meeting itself.  The new documents also show that then-FBI Director Comey seemed to learn of the meeting from news reports.

7. Conflicts of interest are all over the report but the IG states that they did not influence the investigation which clearly is not the case. Due to the significance of the Clinton scandal all prejudices in actuality or appearance should have been eliminated but they were not. The result was the Hillary ‘matter’ was a sham.  The IG states on p iii of the Executive Summary –

There were clearly tensions and disagreements in a number of important areas between Midyear agents and prosecutors. However, we did not find documentary or testimonial evidence that improper considerations, including political bias, directly affected the specific investigative decisions we reviewed.

8. The IG mentions emails obtained from Weiner’s laptop but stays away from the contents of these emails. The laptop held by Anthony Weiner, the spouse of Hillary’s top aid, Huma Abedin was obtained by the FBI with a reported 340,000 Clinton emails going back to 2007. What the hell was in those emails?

9. The IG in his report overlooks the actions of the FBI and DOJ that clearly were more about perception than adhering to the law. For example from page xi of the Executive Summary –

Lynch, Yates, Axelrod, and their staffs had several discussions that same day as to whether Lynch or Yates should call Comey directly, but said they ultimately decided to have Axelrod communicate “the strong view that neither the DAG nor [AG] felt this letter should go out.” Yates told us they were concerned that direct contact with Comey would be perceived as “strongarming” him, and that based on her experience with Comey, he was likely to “push back hard” against input from Lynch or her, especially if accepting their input meant that he had to go back to his staff and explain that he was reversing his decision. She said that she viewed Rybicki as the person they needed to convince if they wanted to change Comey’s mind. Accordingly, Axelrod informed Rybicki on October 27 of the Department’s strong opposition to Comey’s plan to send a letter.

With Obama everything was always a production.

10. Finally, one overall question on the IG report is why was it slow walked for so long before being provided to the public? This alone adds more questions to the overall soundness of the report as the Deep State was allowed more time to review the report and make edits. Did it take so long to cover up the truth?

Robert Barnes@Barnes_Law

SARA CARTER: Lawmakers Warn IG is Being Pressured to Slow Walk and REDACT SIGNIFICANT PORTIONS of Much-Anticipated Report https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2018/06/sara-carter-lawmakers-warn-ig-is-being-pressured-to-slow-walk-and-redact-significant-portions-of-much-anticipated-report/  via @gatewaypundit

SARA CARTER: Lawmakers Warn IG is Being Pressured to Slow Walk and REDACT SIGNIFICANT PORTIONS of…

Lawmakers warned Tuesday the Inspector General is being pressured to slow walk and redact significant portions of his much-anticipated report on the FBI’s (mis)handling of the Clinton investigation. …

thegatewaypundit.com

The Deep State runs deep.

via HERE IT IS: The Top 10 Different Reasons The IG’s Report On the Clinton Email ‘Matter’ Is Flawed – Obama’s Deep State Runs Deep — The Gateway Pundit

SBC Leader Russell Moore Goes on CNN to Decry Immigration Policy — Pulpit & Pen

Last night, SBC Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission President Russell Moore appeared on CNN to criticize Attorney General Jeff Sessions.  Sessions has come under fire from religious leaders for the Trump Administration’s policy of separating the children of illegal immigrants caught crossing the southern border of the United States from their parents.  Rather than sending children to jail with their parents or choosing not to enforce the law, the Trump Administration has chosen to incarcerate illegal immigrants and look after their children in care facilities until such a time as their parents’ cases can be adjudicated.  In response to criticism from Christian leaders, Sessions cited Romans 13 in order to justify the government’s actions in enforcing the law.  Russell Moore took the occasion to appear on CNN with Wolf Blitzer and declare that Sessions “could use more time in Sunday School”.

Evangelical leader Russell Moore to AG Jeff Sessions: “We all have moments when we could use a little more time in Sunday school, and this is one of those moments for the Department of Justice” https://t.co/riIIw0DDOB pic.twitter.com/ksG2mMbvU9

— Anderson Cooper 360° (@AC360) June 16, 2018

According to a 2016 profile published by Newsweek, “Sessions is a Sunday school teacher at the Ashland Place United Methodist Church in Mobile and has been a delegate to the annual Alabama Methodist Conference.”  That Russell Moore, whose job it is to lobby the government for Southern Baptists interests, went on national TV and made a flippant, disrespectful, and ignorant remark about the USA’s top attorney is inexcusable.  His haughty remark may have played well with Blitzer and the liberal demographic of CNN but it is arguably not representative of Southern Baptists thought.  Before giving Moore the floor during the interview segment, Blitzer (who is Jewish) cited several New Testament passages out of context.  Rather than taking the time to correct Blitzer for his misapplication of scripture, Moore continued his multi-year blitzkrieg against the Trump Administration.  Russell Moore rightly argued that Romans 13 does not support the application unjust law.  However, he made no substantial argument that US immigration law is unjust.  Instead, he employed emotional rhetoric about “vulnerable children” who are “clinging to their parents”.  He did not address the actions of those parents, who bring their children along while while committing a crime and engaging in what can often be a very dangerous illicit border crossing.  As a theologian who graduated from the same Southern Baptist seminary as Russell Moore, I can tell you that Sessions’ application of Romans 13 was sound.  The difference between myself and Moore, is that I don’t make my living a professional lobbyist for an increasingly progressive denomination.  Moore, whose original career aspiration was that of a Democratic Party politician, is the tip of a dangerous Southern Baptist iceberg.  I am beginning to suspect that below the water are an increasing number of Neo-Calvinist social justice warriors making their way out of Southern and Southeastern Baptist Theological seminaries.  Widespread acceptance of Moore and his acolytes by Southern Baptist leaders may be motivated by financial concerns, given that illegal immigrants can’t tithe from jail.   Whatever the case, Southern Baptist laypeople should pay more attention to how their money is being spent.  They and their churches essentially paid to have someone who represents them go on CNN, decry a conservative government officials, and content for a soft immigration policy.

To learn more about how you can defund Russell Moore and his progressive agenda, seethis article.

via SBC Leader Russell Moore Goes on CNN to Decry Immigration Policy — Pulpit & Pen

June 16, 2018 Afternoon Verse Of The Day

Love and Death

Song of Songs 8:5–7

Daughters of Jerusalem

Who is this coming up from the wilderness,

supporting herself upon her beloved?

Woman

Under the apple tree, I aroused you;

there your mother conceived you;

there she conceived,

she who brought you forth.

Set me like a seal upon your heart,

like a seal upon your arm.

For love is as strong as Death,

jealousy is as intense as Sheol.

Its flames are flames of fire,

an Almighty flame!

Many waters are not able to extinguish love,

and rivers cannot drown it.

Even if a man should give all the wealth of his house as the price of love,

he would be utterly scorned.

What is love? There are plenty of potential answers to that question in the world of popular culture. According to the rock singer Pat Benatar, love is a battlefield. Many of us can relate to that perspective, especially those who have been married for a while. Just as no one has the same power to bless and encourage you as your spouse, so, too, no one else has the power of a spouse to provoke, exasperate, or even hurt you deeply. Love is not an easy pathway to tread.

On the other hand, if you believe singer Bette Midler, love is a seed hiding beneath the “bitter snows” that when exposed to the sunshine in the spring will finally become a rose. As a gardener, I find that analogy horticulturally suspect. The chances of someone’s planting a seed in the fall and getting a rose in the spring are about on a par with finding Jack’s magic beans that grow into a cloud-rending beanstalk. In the real world, roses are grafted onto existing stems and bought from nurseries, not grown from seed. But if we may deconstruct Ms. Midler, perhaps that is precisely the point of the song: love is beautiful and desirable but in the end ultimately elusive, as legendary and hard to find in this broken world as leprechauns, unicorns—and roses grown from seed. Some can probably relate to that perspective on love as well. Maybe you find it emotionally difficult to attend weddings, because when you watch the bride and groom’s love for each other, you find it hard to imagine that something like that could ever happen for you.

Another definition of love comes from Bruce Lee, the master of martial arts, who once observed:

Love is like a friendship caught on fire. In the beginning a flame, very pretty, often hot and fierce, but still only light and flickering. As love grows older, our hearts mature and our love becomes as coals, deep-burning and unquenchable.

I don’t know if Mr. Lee ever read the Bible, but “friendship caught on fire” is a good summary of the love that we have seen described in the Song of Songs. Yet there are aspects of the other definitions in the passage as well. Fire is very pretty, but the coals can burn as well as warm; a rose is one of the most beautiful of flowers, but roses have thorns as well as blooms; battlefields can be places of memorable triumphs, but battlefields can also be scenes of bitter defeat and awful death. So, too, throughout the Song, we have seen the most glorious descriptions of love side by side with stern warnings against stirring up love too soon. In this passage, as we reach the poetic climax of the Song, the glory and pain of love are once again starkly portrayed side by side in a series of distinct but related images.

Who Is This Coming Up from the Wilderness?

The passage begins with the woman coming up from the wilderness (Song 8:5). This is the second time in the Song that we have heard the exclamation “Who is this coming up from the wilderness?” Last time, in chapter 3, it described the woman coming to meet her beloved for their wedding. Now, at the end of the poem, it depicts her once again coming up from the wilderness. This time she is no longer alone, though: she is leaning on the arm of her beloved. Love starts its sequence with the wedding march, in which the woman emerges from the wilderness—the place of wandering, danger, and death—and comes to the safety of the promised land, accompanied and protected by her beloved. This is one beautiful image for love: a journey that leads from loneliness, emptiness, and chaos into a new life of blessing and hope.

The second image depicts the woman gazing at an apple tree (Song 8:5). In chapter 2, in a passage where she spoke frankly of her desire to sleep with the man, the woman described the man as an apple tree under whose shade she desired to sit and whose fruit she longed to eat. Here the metaphor is shifted slightly: the apple tree is now described as the place where she first aroused her lover. What she told the daughters of Jerusalem not to do until it was ready—arouse love—is exactly what she did at the right time with the man. Because they waited until the appropriate season, their first union under the apple tree is a joyful memory, without need for guilt, remorse, or regret. Here is the second element in the sequence of love: sex, which appropriately takes place after marriage.

Even in its proper context, though, the apple tree of sexual love still has its own pains—in this case, the ones that come with childbirth. The apple tree where she aroused him is, she says, the same place where his own mother labored in childbirth with him (Song 8:5). This statement should not be taken literally, of course. People didn’t normally give birth to children under trees in antiquity any more than they do now. But the apple tree is a poetic reminder that love and marriage generally do lead to the joy and the pain of childbirth: the outrageous joy of having a child to carry on the family line, which was at the same time intimately united with the excruciating pain of childbirth without the benefit of modern anesthetics. Pain in childbirth was part of the curse on humanity that resulted from the fall (Gen. 3:16). Ever since that time, love and pain belong inextricably together as one generation succeeds the next. This, then, is the third element in the sequence: marriage, sex, babies.

Yet there is more to life than weddings, sex, and babies. Love is not just a sweet union of two souls journeying peacefully from the wilderness into the promised land of family life. It is a lifelong and unique commitment, an insatiable appetite that cannot be tamed, placated, bought, or sold. We have seen some of these challenges on our journey through the Song of Songs. Love demands to possess its beloved and to be possessed by him in a unique way. This is expressed by the woman’s desire to become a seal on the man’s heart and on his arm (Song 8:6). In antiquity, seals were among a person’s most precious possessions. They were used to sign documents and to mark ownership of precious objects. In those days, if you wanted to steal someone’s identity, you didn’t steal his credit cards; you stole his seal. So when the woman says that she wants to be like a seal that her beloved carries around his arm, the place of his strength, she wants to be constantly beside him, publicly acknowledged as belonging to him.

Yet the woman doesn’t merely want to be carried beside the man like one of his possessions. She also wants to be within him, like a seal imprinted on the soft clay of his heart, constantly in his thoughts and in his affections. The woman wants to be everything to him, inside and out, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. In fact, since seals were used to mark ownership, what she is saying is that she wants to own him, not simply to belong to him. The previous verse depicted her coming up from the wilderness at their wedding, leaning on her beloved; the image of the seal describes her longing that their relationship remain inextricably bonded and exclusively committed, until death parts them.

Love as Strong as Death

Death is the only image powerful enough to be compared to such love. Love is not merely as strong as an ox, or as powerful as a speeding locomotive: it is as strong as death (Song 8:6). Just as people who enter the fierce grip of death do not emerge again, so, too, having entered the equally powerful realm of love, the woman wants love to grip them both forever. She wants their relationship to remain exclusive and unique, as unyielding and relentless in its single-minded jealousy as the parallel image of Sheol, the grave. Death doesn’t take bribes, nor can anyone buy more time for life by distracting the grave’s attention. The grave never loses its single-minded focus on swallowing people up. So, too, the poet says, is the woman’s jealousy.

We usually think of jealousy as a negative emotion, a refusal to share something that ought to be shared. Perhaps we get jealous if someone else is getting the attention that we think we deserve or if another person acquires something that we really desire. Indeed, we spend a lot of time and effort teaching our children not to be jealous, but to share. They need to let their little brother play with their toys and to rejoice when their sister gets a present that they wish they had. I vividly remember that one Christmas when I was about seven, my great-aunt gave me a plastic model kit of a World War II battleship to construct, while my sisters got cute stuffed animals. I was furiously angry and vented my feelings on all around me. I was sinfully jealous, even though my great-aunt had actually put considerable thought into providing me with a suitable gift.

But some things in life are not meant to be shared. When our kids were small, they were adorable. Yet if you had come to Barb and me and asked if you could buy them, or even just borrow them for a year or two, we would have said no. We were jealous over our children, conscious that God had given us the unique calling to raise them. We would not share the privilege of parenting them with other people. In the same way, there is an appropriate jealousy in marriage. You belong uniquely to the other person and he or she belongs to you. This doesn’t mean that you have to be together for every second of every day and can never speak to members of the opposite sex without your spouse’s permission. We were never intended to meet all the relational needs of our spouses, and it would be folly to try. But loving someone means that you have a unique relationship with your spouse, who holds your heart in his or her hands in a special way that no one else shares. No one else should know your struggles in the way that your spouse does. No one else should delight in your triumphs and joys the way your spouse does. Some things are not meant to be shared.

Love Is a Divine Fire

The woman also compares love to a flaming fire—not just any fire, but a blaze as intense as the flames of the Almighty, the Lord himself. Married love is not merely a comfortable companionship. Otherwise, we could be married to many people at the same time, just as we can have many friends. Married love is more than friendship. It is a mutual, exclusive commitment: friendship on fire. It is this aspect of fiery longing in marriage that the Song of Songs brings out so powerfully. The Song describes the desire of each man and woman to possess a unique and lastingly committed soulmate who will be not only friend but lover, someone who is madly and passionately devoted to that one person and to him or her alone. This is why proposing marriage to someone is not just a matter of calmly explaining to your intended the various strengths that you and she bring to the table and proposing a corporate merger. Marriage is intended to be a flaming, red-hot relationship.

This is a countercultural expectation, to say the least. Our culture still desires burning passion, but has largely disconnected marriage from that expectation. Our society’s image for marriage is built around the model of Tevye and Golde from The Fiddler on the Roof. In that musical, reflecting on twenty-five years of marriage, Tevye asks his wife, Golde, if she loves him. In response, she reminds him that she has washed his clothes, cooked his meals, cleaned his house, shared his bed, given him children, and milked his cow. After twenty-five years, why should they talk about love now? But when he presses the point, “Do you love me?,” she finally concedes, “I suppose I do.” This is most people’s image of married love: a good marriage is not so much a matter of shared passion as it is of shared chores. Yet the Bible joins the two together and calls us to a marriage that is not merely friendship but friendship on fire. We are meant to say not simply “I suppose I love you,” but “I love you with a burning love that is as strong as death and as jealous as the grave.” We were made for this kind of friendship on fire.

Love’s Final Triumph

Marriage, sex, babies, enduring faithfulness, and death. Is that all there is? Is love only as strong as death? Does Sheol win in the end? Not at all. The final image speaks of the inextinguishable nature of love (Song 8:7). Love cannot be swept away by many waters or drowned by deep floods. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things (1 Cor. 13:7). Death and the grave cannot have the final say in the matter. Love must win in the end.

What is more, a love of this kind cannot be bought. The alternative commercial model of love, epitomized by Solomon, involves a simple cost-benefit analysis. It supposes that you get what you pay for in life, and so to get a good wife, you must be willing to pay a great deal. If necessary, perhaps you should even be prepared to give all the wealth of your house to acquire one (Song 8:7). Yet love laughs at that calculus. True love cannot be bought, nor can it be bargained for, even at the highest of prices. Someone who pursues that route will inevitably end up as the object of pity—or, even worse, of scorn—from those who truly know love.

This passage thus sets a high bar for what to look for in a spouse. Don’t settle for marriage to someone whose best quality is that he or she is willing and available. That person deserves better than that, and so do you. Only a rich and profound love—friendship on fire—can endure the trials of life in a fallen world. Marriage is not a walk in the park, or a pleasant sail on a summer’s afternoon. If you love someone enough to marry him or her, then you will inevitably pass with that person through the turmoil of sickness, conflict, childbirth—or the painful inability to have a child—many mutual and individual disappointments, brokenness, tears, sorrow, and ultimately death itself. Marriage is indeed, as the old vows say, “for better or worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness or in health, till death do us part.”

Nothing less than friendship on fire will carry you through the challenges of caring for your spouse when he becomes unable to care for himself, or of forgiving your spouse when she sins against you in deep and profoundly painful ways, of enduring together through the bad times as well as the good. Of course, the intensity of that fire will vary over the course of a lifetime. At times it will be a raging blaze, while at others it will settle back into glowing embers; sometimes you might have to dig through the ashes to find a live coal. Feelings come and go. Yet if love is going to endure all things, we need a love that many waters cannot extinguish and floods cannot drown.

This passage also sets a high bar within marriage. You are to treat your spouse like a seal. That means that he or she is to be your most precious possession, to be treasured like a pearl of great price. It also suggests that a spouse is meant to leave a lasting imprint on your heart, touching the deepest core of your being. Do you view and treat your spouse in that way? Do you nurture, cherish, and protect your spouse with an appropriate jealousy, regarding his or her highest welfare as your single-minded concern, laying down your life for that person daily? It is sometimes easy for us men to imagine giving our lives for our wives in some dramatic gesture, for example, by shielding her body from a terrorist’s bullets. Yet God far more often asks us to give our lives for our wives daily in much more mundane ways, for example, by taking care of the children so that she can go to a Bible study, washing the dishes, listening patiently to her talk about the troubles of her friends, and so on. Love graciously endures and shares in the little things, as well as giving itself in grand gestures.

The Greater Treasure

Even at its very best, though, human marriage cannot and will not ultimately satisfy the desire that God has built into our souls for friendship on fire. Marriage is wonderful, but it is not enough. It was never intended to be enough: if marriage is all that we have, even the best marriage in the world will not satisfy our craving for love. Nor are we incomplete people without marriage. After all, according to the Bible, marriage was made in the beginning to give us the primary picture of Christ’s relationship with the church (Eph. 5). It is in our relationship with Christ that we truly find the friendship on fire that we all need.

This is wonderful news because in this fallen world, we do not all have great marriages. Some people are single and may remain so throughout their lives. Yet they, too, long for a friendship that is on fire and face the temptation to search for that fire in all kinds of illicit directions. This temptation may take the shape of the allure of sexual pleasure outside marriage, whether acted out or kept in our hearts and minds in the form of lust.

Those of us who are married also repeatedly fall very far short of the high standard set by Scripture. We may be wrongly jealous of our spouses when we should trust them, or we may settle into dull and humdrum relationships because we cannot be bothered to love our spouses with the kind of passion that the Song describes. It is hard work to love someone like that. Maybe you have never experienced such a fire in your marriage, or the fire has long since gone out. Perhaps your attempts to express love receive an angry response from your spouse or an icy-cold rebuff. Yet God is able to light or relight that fire in the coldest of contexts. Even the best marriages have many painful moments and difficult experiences. There are times in every marriage when the fire seems to have grown cold. We are all sinners who repeatedly wound one another, both with our carelessness and through deliberate acts. Yet in our relationship with Christ, there is a true and burning love that we can all experience, whether we are happily married, unhappily married, divorced, widowed, or single.

In Jesus, we truly experience friendship on fire. For Jesus to win his spouse, it was not enough for him merely to humble himself and come to earth to be our friend. If he had simply come into this world to model true friendship and to show us what that kind of love looked like, we would simply have been condemned all the more for our failure as friends. His perfection in being patient, being kind, keeping no record of wrongs, and so on with a people who were cold and unresponsive would simply have highlighted all the more our sin and failure. Jesus had to do far more than that in order to win us as his friends forever. As Jesus himself said, “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13). Jesus didn’t just live the life of perfect love to give us an example to follow; he lived it for us, in our place. Then, in order to pay the penalty for our sins and restore our broken friendship with God, Jesus went to the cross to atone for all our sins and failures, including our failure to truly love God and love one another, whether within our marriages and families or more broadly. At the cross, love deliberately entered the power of death. Love lay down and died. It was the ultimate sacrifice.

Is love merely as strong as death? Is love’s jealous desire to own someone simply on a par with the power of the grave? We might think so, if all we had to go on were human experience. When a couple gets married, they pledge their love to each other until death. A couple may love each other passionately for fifty years, and then suddenly she is gone and he is left behind. Soon he, too, will die, and then what will happen to their love? Does death really win in the end? Does the grave gain the final victory?

For three days after Christ entered the tomb, the heavens held their breath, and watched and waited. But then Christ, the very embodiment of God’s love, emerged triumphantly from the grave and conquered death forever. He came up from the wilderness of the tomb, with his chosen bride, his church, leaning radiantly on his arm. Because of that victory, God could say to his people in the book of Isaiah:

Fear not, for I have redeemed you;

I have called you by name, you are mine.

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;

and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;

when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,

and the flame shall not consume you.

For I am the Lord your God,

the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. (Isa. 43:1–3)

Because Christ is risen, Paul can exclaim:

“O death, where is your victory?

O death, where is your sting?”

The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Cor. 15:55–57)

This incredible, passionate love story is what every page of the Bible is about. Isaiah’s words about God’s faithful love transcending rivers and floods were written for people who found themselves in exile for their sin, far away from the land they had been promised. So, too, God’s friendship on fire pursues us right where we are, with all our lostness, brokenness, and coldness, with all our failures to love him and others, and all our sins both outside and within marriage. The Lord is jealously calling you to an exclusive relationship with him, whether for the first time or returning from a far country yet again. God does not merely tolerate your presence; he is not just mildly fond of you; he loves you with an incredible, passionate love. Through his amazing friendship on fire that took him to earth to endure the agony of the cross and a shameful death for you, Jesus Christ has done everything that is necessary to win you as his bride and to restore you to deep and lasting friendship with your Father God.

Catching Fire

Yet how cold our hearts so often still are! What will ignite the wet tinder of our souls with an unquenchable love for God? Paradoxically, it happens as we see more and more our own brokenness and sin. If we view ourselves as a great acquisition and think that surely God must be blessed to have followers like us, then our love to him will indeed be small. But when the truth about our hearts becomes visible to us as the height and breadth and depth of our sin starts to be exposed, and we come to realize that God loves us still and that he died to pay even for the sins of someone like us, then our hearts start to warm. As we grow in our grasp of the magnitude of how much we have been forgiven, then our hearts begin to spark into flame, for as Jesus said, “He who is forgiven little, loves little” (Luke 7:47).

Perhaps human love can only be as strong as death, but God’s love is greater still, stronger than Sheol. God’s love for us in Christ has triumphed over the grave once and for all, and so in him we, too, can one day triumph over the grave, through the solid hope that he gives of the resurrection of the dead. In heaven, spouses, friends, and families will be reunited, with all their former sins and brokenness gone, replaced with a purity of love that for now we can only dream about. In Christ, we have a relationship with God and with one another that extends beyond this life into eternity and onward, a friendship on fire that we can never lose because it depends on his perfect, jealous love that will never let us go. Our love comes and goes, but his love never fails. Our names are inscribed in the wounds on the palms of his hands; they are impressed on his heart like a seal so that he can no more forget us than a mother can forget her nursing child (Isa. 49:15).

The Bible calls us all to respond to such incredible love and become friends on fire toward one another. If we are married, such self-sacrificing and passionate love is to mark out our relationship in an exclusive and powerful way. Whether married or single, we are all to love the God who calls us his bride with that kind of friendship on fire, seeking first his kingdom and laying down our lives daily for one another in obedience to his commands. Sometimes we may succeed in being such a friend; often, we will fail. In those many moments of failure, we will need to return constantly to the perfect obedience of Christ in our place, and to the cross, the place where God demonstrated his friendship on fire for us. There Jesus paid for our many failures to be the spouse that we were meant to be, and for our spouse’s failures to love us as he or she ought. There Jesus paid for the coldness and indifference that we so often show to our heavenly Spouse, to Jesus himself. There at the cross and especially in the resurrection, God’s fiery love triumphed forever over the grave and won the victory for his people.

In that truth—the truth of God’s victory in Christ over sin and death and hell—we can find the faith to step out once again in trying to show friendship on fire to one another after we have failed many times, as well as faith in God’s unbreakable love for us in Christ. There at the cross we find hope: the hope of an eternal future together with Christ from which even the flooding waters of death cannot separate us. There at the cross we find something even greater than faith and hope. We find the greatest of these, love—God’s amazing, fiery love to us in the gospel.[1]


7a The property that equates fire with death and Sheol is here revealed to be its unstoppable character; love is a fire that cannot be doused. Ordinary fires are extinguishable and only extraordinary conflagrations can traverse rivers; but love-fire yields to no power and cannot be quenched. Thus love is not only as strong as death, but also it triumphs when death threatens to extinguish love.[2]


8:6–7 / This segment, in which the woman is still speaking (as the niv indicates), is remarkable in both tone and vocabulary. Throughout the book, love has been celebrated exuberantly. Occasionally there have been hints of danger: the resistance of the brothers, repeated warnings about arousing love before its time, the beating by the city guards, and even the use of military imagery. Yet throughout the rest of the book, to celebrate love is to celebrate life. Only here is the strength of love compared with death and Sheol and raging flames. This is not to suggest that love is no longer celebrated; but the fierceness of love is recognized as being deadly serious.[3]


8:7quench … despised: The point of this powerful verse is that true love cannot be destroyed, and neither can it be purchased.[4]


8:7b. The final statement about the love depicted in the Song is that it is priceless. All one’s wealth would be totally inadequate to purchase such love. In fact such money would be … scorned, because love cannot be bought. Any attempt to “buy” love depersonalizes it.

If love is priceless, how then can it be obtained? The answer is that it must be given. And ultimately love is a gift from God. The epilogue explains how the beloved received this priceless gift of love.[5]


[1] Duguid, I. M. (2016). Song of Songs. (R. D. Phillips, P. G. Ryken, & I. M. Duguid, Eds.) (pp. 143–154). Phillipsburg, NJ: P&R Publishing.

[2] Schwab, G. M. (2008). Song of Songs. In T. Longman III, Garland David E. (Eds.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Proverbs–Isaiah (Revised Edition) (Vol. 6, p. 426). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

[3] Huwiler, E. (2012). The Songs of Songs. In W. W. Gasque, R. L. Hubbard Jr., & R. K. Johnston (Eds.), Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs (p. 288). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.

[4] Radmacher, E. D., Allen, R. B., & House, H. W. (1999). Nelson’s new illustrated Bible commentary (p. 802). Nashville: T. Nelson Publishers.

[5] Deere, J. S. (1985). Song of Songs. In J. F. Walvoord & R. B. Zuck (Eds.), The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures (Vol. 1, p. 1024). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.

June 16 Wrong Judgment: An Erroneous View of God

Do not judge so that you will not be judged.—Matt. 7:1

Believers are not to make unrighteous and unmerciful judgment on others because it manifests a wrong view of God. With the phrase “so that you will not be judged,” Jesus reminds the scribes and Pharisees that they are not the final court. To judge another person’s motives or to stand in the place of condemnation is to play God. “For not even the Father judges anyone, but He has given all judgment to the Son” (John 5:22). During the millennial kingdom Christ will share some of that judgment with us (Matt. 19:28), but until that time we blaspheme God whenever we take the role of judge on ourselves.

“Who are you to judge the servant of another?” asks Paul. “To his own master he stands or falls” (Rom. 14:4). Paul was little concerned about how other people judged him, nor was he concerned about how he judged himself. “I am conscious of nothing against myself,” he says, “yet I am not by this acquitted; but the one who examines me is the Lord” (1 Cor. 4:4).

Except as they may be continually teaching false doctrine or following standards that are clearly unscriptural, we are never to judge a person’s ministry, teaching, or life—and certainly not his motives—by some self-styled standard.

Whenever we assign people to condemnation without mercy, we pass judgment that only God is qualified to make. Our Lord does not call for men to cease to be examining and discerning, but to renounce the presumptuous temptation to try to be God.

ASK YOURSELF

Why is the desire to judge and size up such an alluring appetite of ours? What does our tendency to enjoy it tell us about ourselves? What would need to occur inside before we saw an increased resistance to practice it?[1]


[1] MacArthur, J. (2008). Daily readings from the life of Christ (p. 176). Chicago: Moody Publishers.

JUNE 16 SCRIPTURAL GUIDANCE: BELIEVERS MAY TEST THEMSELVES

Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

1 JOHN 4:1

The seeker after God’s best things is always eager to hear from anyone who offers a way by which he can obtain them. He longs for some new experience, some elevated view of truth, some operation of the Spirit that will raise him above the dead level of religious mediocrity he sees all around him.

These are the times that try men’s souls. Our Lord has made it plain not only that there shall be false spirits abroad, endangering our Christian lives, but that they may be identified and known for what they are! I have met Christians who have been led into emotional experiences that were beyond their power to comprehend, and they have inquired eagerly whether or not their experience was of God.

The first test must be: “What has this done to my relationship with and my attitude toward the Lord Jesus Christ?” Do I love God more? Is Jesus Christ still to me the center of all true doctrine? Do I still agree that anything that makes Him less than God has declared Him to be must be rejected?

Again: “How does it affect my attitude toward the Holy Scriptures?” Did this new view of truth spring out of the Word of God itself or was it the result of some stimulus that lay outside the Bible?

Be assured that anything that comes to us from the God of the Word will deepen our love for the Word of God![1]


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

Bottom line? Obama single-handedly ruined the FBI and the DOJ — American Thinker Blog

Naturally, the political/media left that crowds out saner voices on television were quick as jack rabbits to announce that the FBI was vindicated by the IG report that was released on Thursday.  “Nothing to see here, move along,” was their mantra.  But one only has to scroll through the list of columns posted at RealClearPolitics on Friday to grasp the abyss between the left and right re: the report.

The report contained an executive summary that said “We found no documentary evidence of political bias.”   That means they did not find written confessions by all those Trump-hating higher-ups at the once-great law enforcement agency.  But the five-hundred page body of the report is chock full of extreme political anti-Trump  mendacity.  Why the hundreds of texts between several  like-minded agents that reek of profound bias against Trump are not documentary evidence is a mystery.

Nevertheless,  it is an indisputable fact that a cabal of conspirators on the seventh floor of the FBI building, led by Comey and McCabe, along with John Brennan (CIA) , James Clapper (DNI) , Sally Yates and Rod Rosenstein  at Justice coordinated their attempts to prevent Trump from winning the election by all manner of illegal means.  Most likely, much of this was at the bidding and with permission of Barack Obama.

Once Trump won, their focus switched to taking him out before he could be inaugurated.  They hope still to see him impeached, despite the thriving economy, low un-employment, and possible rapprochement with North Korea.

The New York Times continues to attack Trump, to accuse him of numerous crimes for which they have no evidence.  Leftist voices of rage continue to defend Hillary, to claim she was not treated with sufficient deference, even as her many crimes overlooked.  Paul Manafort was sent to jail on Friday while Hillary and this bunch of crooks at the FBI and DOJ are walking free, complaining all the while that Trump should never have been elected.

They’ve not learned a thing.  They hate Trump and every person who voted for him with the “white-hot heat of a thousand suns.”   Like deluded Marxists in every nation they inhabit, this bunch feels entitled to reign over the rest of us.  Their contempt for American voters and the law as written oozes off every page of that IG report.   Their excuses for their criminal behavior are pathetic.

Hollywood is on the same page as the media.   Look no further than Robert DeNiro, that empty suit who used to be an actor.  Even Piers Morgan recognizes the insanity of the celebrity left.  So isolated in their bubbles of wealth and privilege, they do not seem to realize their pubic, profane tantrums are insuring GOP success in November and Trump’s re-election in 2020.

This IG report is only half, or maybe only a third of the whole story.  Next will be Horowitz’s report on the FISA warrants, the justification of which was invented out of whole cloth by the self-same overlords that gave Hillary a pass.  These are police state operatives, reminiscent of the Soviet Union, East Germany before the wall fell,  and North Korea.  They freely abused their power to surveil and spy on countless private citizens who had any connection, however flimsy, to Trump and his family.

Mueller and his team of hired guns have nearly bankrupted many of the people they have targeted.   There is a special place in hell for this swarm of rats.  Mueller’s past record of horrific ethical lapses should have seen him disbarred years ago; his mistakes have cost the taxpayers millions of dollars.  The same is true of several others on his hand-picked team of hitmen.

While the devious machinations of the deep state are not new, it was the Obama administration, most likely Obama himself, who brought us to this low point, the wholesale corruption of the FBI and the DOJ leadership.  Obama surrounded himself with like-minded globalist elites who thought no laws applied to them:   Susan Rice, Samantha Power, Valerie Jarrett, the Podestas,  Ben Rhodes, Jonathan Gruber, and more.  Eric Holder was the most unprincipled Attorney General, including even John MItchell who served time in federal prison.

We learned from the IG report that Obama lied when he said he learned of HRC’s private server from the media. He knew because he, too, corresponded with her from a private email, just as Comey used a non-FBI email account as well. None of these people, not one, respected our Constitution or the laws that were meant to govern their agencies.

This is what Obama did to America. He virtually destroyed the FBI, the CIA, and the DOJ by turning them into weapons with which to destroy his opponents.  They learned their Stasi lessons well.  President Trump’s outsider ways are like blessed sunlight on these institutions that had been allowed to deteriorate and decay over the eight years of Obama rule.
— Read on www.americanthinker.com/blog/2018/06/bottom_line_obama_singlehandedly_ruined_the_fbi_and_the_doj_.html

June 16 Edifying Words

What is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.

Ephesians 4:29

If you allow Christ to keep watch over your lips, whatever you say should build up others. You should encourage and strengthen others spiritually. Is that what happens when you talk with people? Do they go away built up in Jesus Christ? Mothers, when you are with your children throughout the day, do your words build them up? Fathers, when you take your children out for the day, are your conversations with them edifying and encouraging?

Today’s verse also indicates that we should give others “necessary” edification, meaning that our words fit the need. When I was growing up, whenever I would say to my mom, “Do you know what So–and–so did?” she would respond, “Is that necessary to know?” Often what I wanted to say was interesting, but it certainly wasn’t necessary.

Finally our speech should “impart grace to the hearers.” Do your words bless those who hear them? Is there graciousness in what you say? You can be sure that if you allow the Lord to set a watch over your tongue and let His Word dwell in you, then your words will be His gracious words.[1]


[1] MacArthur, J. (2001). Truth for today : a daily touch of God’s grace (p. 185). Nashville, Tenn.: J. Countryman.