Daily Archives: September 17, 2018


Peter and John answered…We cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.

Acts 4:19–20

In this unfriendly world, is our Christian deportment too fearful and cowardly? Is this generation guilty of the sin of silence?

The Bible has much to say in praise of prudence, but it has nothing but condemnation for the coward! It is also plainly taught in the New Testament that the soul that is too timid to own and confess Christ before men will be denied before the Father in heaven.

It is apparent that Christian men and women are not speaking out as they should when the Enemy stalks into the very sanctuary and pollutes the holy place! Fun and frolic, films and fiction, Hollywood ideals and religious entertainment, big-business techniques and cheap worldly philosophies now overrun the sanctuary. The grieved Holy Spirit broods over the chaos but no light breaks forth.

Could it be that too many of God’s true children—and especially the preachers—are sinning against God by guilty silence? Those who do speak up on the side of Truth will pay a price for their boldness but the results will be worth it!

Lord, I pray for Hollywood filmmakers, secular businessmen, and unscrupulous politicians. Impress upon each one their need for a Savior—and then help them to change the world through their godly influence.[1]

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


Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.

—Philippians 1:6

There comes a time when the true believer must take his stand on the oath and covenant of God and refuse to be shaken. He must lift high his happy affirmation, not in arrogance, but in faith and in deep humility. Perhaps his declaration of independence will go something like this:

I am not yet perfect, but I thank God and my Lord Jesus Christ that I am done with the past and I do now trust in my Savior for full deliverance from all sins. I cannot pray like Daniel, but I shall never cease to praise God that He inclines His ear to me. I am not as wise as Solomon, but I glory in this, that “I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day” (2 Timothy 1:12). I have not the gifts of Moses or Isaiah or John, but I’ll be everlastingly grateful that I have been given the moral perception to understand and appreciate such men as these. I am not what I want to be, but thanks be to God that I do want to be better than I am; and I am sure that “he which hath begun a good work in [me] will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6).

Here I stand. I can do nothing else, so help me God. SIZ104-105

Lord, do the work that must be done in Your power, through Your Holy Spirit, to bring Your work to completion in my life. Amen. [1]

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

09/17/2018 — Wretched


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via 09/17/2018 — Wretched

Senate Democrats on the Judiciary Committee are working overtime to delay Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court.

On Thursday, ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) referred a mysterious letter about Kavanaugh to the FBI.
Feinstein had been holding on to the letter since earlier this year.

It turns out the woman who sent the letter to Democrat lawmakers – Christine Blasey – is a far-left activist.

Independent journalist Mike Cernovich says Christine Blasey is a far-left activist who spent all weekend deleting her social media accounts.

The only other witness to the alleged attack said it never happened and the allegations are “absolutely nuts.”

On Monday morning Judge Brett Kavanaugh responded to the allegations.

Kavanaugh refuted the 36-year-old claims and later said he was not even at the party in question.

Moments ago President Trump addressed the media. Trump called out Sen. Dianne Feinstein for not bringing up the alleged incident when she had her private audience with the Supreme Court nominee last month.

via BOOM! Trump Says Feinstein DID NOT EVEN BRING UP Accusation by Far Left Prof at Their Meeting (VIDEO) — The Gateway Pundit

BREAKING: Senate Judiciary to Hold Vote on Kavanaugh Thursday Despite Decades-Old Accusations — The Gateway Pundit

Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA)


The Democrats thought they could roll out a last minute “me too” accusation to delay Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court.

It didn’t work.

The Senate Judiciary Committee is voting anyway on Thursday despite unsubstantiated, decades old allegations of sexual abuse against Brett Kavanaugh by a far left activist.

Brace for well organized protests, says investigative reporter, Paul Sperry.

BREAKING: Senate Judiciary Committee vote will be held regardless of accusation. Committee not delaying for testimony from accuser. Going ahead with vote on Thursday, bracing for well-organized protests from leftists at Hart Senate Office Building

The Senate met for the first time Monday afternoon since Christine Blasey Ford, a California professor and far left activist publicly came forward with allegations of sexual assault against Brett Kavanaugh.

Christine Blasey Ford is a far-left activist who alleged Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her over 35 years ago while she was at a high school party in Maryland.

On Monday, Judge Kavanaugh told Senator Hatch (R-UT) that he was not even at the party in question!

“Highly problematic that accuser Christine M. Blasey-Ford cannot provide an exact date of alleged incident — no day or month, not even sure of the season. Fact she didn’t tell anybody contemporaneously also a problem in terms of corroborating her story,” says investigative reporter, Paul Sperry.

We are at war–the Democrats will do anything and everything to prevent the Supreme Court from cementing a conservative majority.

via BREAKING: Senate Judiciary to Hold Vote on Kavanaugh Thursday Despite Decades-Old Accusations — The Gateway Pundit

Kellyanne Conway Discusses Accusations Against SCOTUS Nominee Brett Kavanaugh…. — The Last Refuge

Supreme court nominee Brett Kavanaugh presented the following statement today following a high school sexual assault accusation from Christine Blasey Ford:

“This is a completely false allegation. I have never done anything like what the accuser describes—to her or to anyone. Because this never happened, I had no idea who was making this accusation until she identified herself yesterday.”

“I am willing to talk to the Senate Judiciary Committee in any way the Committee deems appropriate to refute this false allegation, from 36 years ago, and defend my integrity.”

Counselor to the President, Kellyanne Conway, discussed the issues this morning on Fox and Friends:


via Kellyanne Conway Discusses Accusations Against SCOTUS Nominee Brett Kavanaugh…. — The Last Refuge

HUGE! Kavanaugh Tells Senator Hatch He Was Not Even at the Party in Question — The Gateway Pundit

The Senate met for the first time Monday afternoon since Christine Blasey Ford, a California professor and far left activist publicly came forward with allegations of sexual assault against Brett Kavanaugh.

All the facts aren’t even in but Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) is calling for a delay in the Kavanaugh confirmation process.

Christine Blasey Ford is a far-left activist who alleged Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her over 35 years ago while she was at a high school party in Maryland.

Now this…

Kavanaugh told Senator Hatch that he was not even at the party in question!

Senator Hatch blasted the Democrats on Monday for the way they handled the accusations thus far, reported Chad Pergram.

Senator Hatch said it seems in bad faith to withhold info from Republicans and from the FBI for over a month.

Furthermore, the only other witness to the alleged attack said it never happened and the allegations are “absolutely nuts.”

via HUGE! Kavanaugh Tells Senator Hatch He Was Not Even at the Party in Question — The Gateway Pundit

DEVELOPING: Senate Meeting For First Time Since Kavanaugh Accuser Publicly Came Forward – Schumer Calls For Delay in Kavanaugh Confirmation — The Gateway Pundit

The Senate is meeting for the first time Monday afternoon since Christine Blasey Ford, a California professor and far left activist publicly came forward with allegations of sexual assault against Brett Kavanaugh.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) called for a delay in the Kavanaugh confirmation process.

FOX News Congress reporter Chad Pergram also said Monday, “expect to hear from McConnell.”

PERGRAM: Senate now meeting for first time since Christine Ford publicly came forward with allegations against Kavanaugh. Expect to hear from McConnell/Schumer. Schumer has called for a delay in the Kavanaugh confirmation process


On Thursday, ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) referred a mysterious letter about Kavanaugh to the FBI after holding onto it for months.

The author of the letter, Christine Blasey Ford is a far-left activist who alleged Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her over 35 years ago while she was in high school in Maryland.

The only other witness to the alleged attack said it never happened and the allegations are “absolutely nuts.”

Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) went off on Feinstein Monday because she wouldn’t even join him, in a phone call with the accuser–an obvious attempt to delay Kavanaugh’s confirmation.

The Dems are so dirty they had to go back over three decades to Kavanaugh’s high school days to dig up ‘dirt’ using a left-wing activist.

The Republicans better move forward with voting this week otherwise they will only embolden the left to roll out left-wing activists with shady “me too” stories to derail conservatives in the future.

This is a developing story…

via DEVELOPING: Senate Meeting For First Time Since Kavanaugh Accuser Publicly Came Forward – Schumer Calls For Delay in Kavanaugh Confirmation — The Gateway Pundit

September 17 Daily Help

We would see Jesus.—John 12:21.

IS this thy condition, my reader, at this moment? Hast thou but one desire, and is that after Christ? Then thou art not far from the kingdom of heaven. Hast thou but one wish in thy heart, and that one wish that thou mayest be washed from all thy sins in Jesus’ blood? Canst thou really say, “I would give all I have to be a Christian; I would give up everything I have and hope for, if I might but feel that I have an interest in Christ?” Then, despite all thy fears, be of good cheer, the Lord loveth thee, and thou shalt come out into daylight soon, and rejoice in the liberty wherewith Christ makes men free.[1]

[1] Spurgeon, C. H. (1892). Daily Help (p. 264). Baltimore: R. H. Woodward & Company.

Joe Biden calls Trump supporters the ‘dregs of society’

Joe Biden called Trump voters the “dregs of society” during an impassioned speech at an LGBT charity event. Donald Trump Jr. has hit back at the former vice president saying his statement went “too far”.

Source: Joe Biden calls Trump supporters the ‘dregs of society’

7 Lies Planned Parenthood’s New President Pushed On ‘The View’

Planned Parenthood’s new president, Dr. Leana Wen, cut her teeth in major media appearances with a segment on “The View” Thursday. The abortion giant seems to be trying to remake its image and establish more credibility as a “medical provider” by choosing a medical doctor to head their organization.

She is articulate, young, attractive, a new mother, and, at least on paper, she has some serious credentials as both an ER doctor and health commissioner of Baltimore. She’s also a minority who grew up in a working-class home; her parents immigrated to the United States from China.

On the surface, it seems Planned Parenthood couldn’t have picked a better face for their organization. Unfortunately, her appointment doesn’t seem to mark a change in how Planned Parenthood does business, as Wen is parroting the same discredited propaganda the organization has been disseminating for years.

Although two hosts pressed moderately about federal funding for abortion, most of the interview was soft-balled and Wen had ample opportunity to spread further disinformation on behalf of Planned Parenthood, which is still in disaster-control mode after years of federal and state investigations into its fetal body parts business. Here is a fact-check of the major claims Wen made in her appearance on “The View.”

1. Planned Parenthood ‘has done more for women’s health than any other.’

Apparently the destruction of 3,401,891 preborn baby girls since 1978 is a stellar record for women’s health. Beyond the obvious fact that preborn genocide totally negates anything Planned Parenthood does, what is so special about Planned Parenthood that its services are critical to American women?

If you want oral birth control, you can get it at any health clinic. If you need sexually transmitted disease testing, cancer screenings, or prenatal care, you can get it at the doctor’s office. If you simply need “education,” which Planned Parenthood loves to tout as a major accomplishment, you can go to any of the 2,752 pregnancy centers in the United States.

CareNet affiliate pregnancy centers alone, many of which provide ultrasounds and STI testing (1,100), outnumber Planned Parenthood affiliate health centers by almost 2 to 1 (650). Clearly Planned Parenthood is neither replaceable nor crucial for women’s health.

2. One in 5 American women go to Planned Parenthood for ‘basic medical services.’

“Just like 1 in 5 women in America, Planned Parenthood was where we went for basic medical services like cancer screening and family planning.”

This statistic has been bandied about to refer to women who “rely” on Planned Parenthood or to refer to women who visit Planned Parenthood at some point in their lives. Wen seems to be doing the former.

Planned Parenthood picked up this number from a 2013 online poll of 1,000 respondents conducted by YouGov in association with the Huffington Post, in which 20 percent of respondents said they had “ever personally visited a Planned Parenthood clinic for health services.”

It is still incredibly disingenuous to assert that 1 in 5 American women go to Planned Parenthood for “basic medical services.” For instance, 82.1 percent of women aged 18 and over visited “a doctor or other healthcare professional” at least once in the past 12 months.

Out of the approximate total of this demographic in 2016, (67,765,930 is half the total population adjusted for the male-female ratio), an estimated 2,470,000 clients (we’ll assume they are all women) visited a Planned Parenthood clinic, or 3.6 percent just of total adult women who visited a health-care professional. That number is probably a bit lower if you exclude male and minor clients.

If we want to be even more accurate, as of 2017, there were approximately 135,671,118 women above the age of 15 living in the United States, according to CIA data. Even if you consider all of Planned Parenthood’s estimated health clinic clients (still 2,470,000 in 2017), that’s less than 2 percent of all American adult women. Thus, it appears probable that Wen’s estimate of women who “go to Planned Parenthood for basic medical services” is off by a factor of ten.

3. If Confirmed to the Supreme Court, Kavanaugh will overturn Roe V. Wade.

“I’m a doctor and a scientist and I have to go by the data. And one data point is that President Trump has a litmus test, that he will only appoint Supreme Court justices that will overturn Roe vs. Wade… And I also have another data point on what Judge Kavanaugh has done before in his rulings and there’s nothing in his confirmation hearings that would reassure me otherwise…”

One first has to consider the most recent Trump position on choosing Supreme Court justices, which is that he would not ask them about the landmark 1973 case. However, when Trump was asked about overturning Roe back in 2016, he said, “If we put another two or perhaps three justices on, that will happen. And that will happen automatically, in my opinion, because I am putting pro-life justices on the court.”

Given the number of times Trump has flipped positions on a variety of subjects, it’s difficult to tell what his “authentic” position is. He’s essentially been winging it, as far as public statements, through his campaign and up to this point in his presidency.

Nevertheless, Kavanaugh said in his confirmation hearings that Roe “is an important precedent to the Supreme Court. It’s been reaffirmed many times. It was reaffirmed in Planned Parenthood v. Casey in 1992 when the court specifically considered whether to reaffirm it or whether to overturn it. …That makes Casey precedent on precedent.”

This was a walk-back of a statement he’d made in a 2003 letter saying that he was “not sure that all legal scholars refer to Roe as the settled law of the land at the Supreme Court level since the Court can always overrule its precedent, and three current Justices on the Court would do so.”

Kavanaugh has only ruled directly on one abortion case: the illegal immigrant minor who sought an abortion in the United States last year. According to his own testimony during his confirmation hearings, he explained how his decision was made on precedent regarding parental consent, citing Casey as one of those precedents, and specifically said the government “cannot use [the administrative stay] as a ruse to prevent the pregnancy.”

To say this one ruling, or even Kavanaugh’s Priests for Life ruling, in which he said that facilitating access to abortifacients and birth control was a substantial burden on Priests for Life’s religious exercise, means it is certain that Kavanaugh would vote to overturn Roe stretches the evidence pretty thin.

4. Women’s lives are ‘at stake’ in overturning Roe.

“We have to take [Trump] at his word about overturning Roe vs. Wade and the stakes are just so high, I mean we’re talking about women’s lives that are at stake” (emphasis added).

This is a bald-faced lie. Wen is clearly playing off her audience’s ignorance about the nature of the Roe v. Wade decision, making it seem as if pregnant women will all of a sudden start dying if the precedent is overturned.

Roe V. Wade enshrined the right to an abortion in the United States as constitutionally protected. However, before 1973, abortion was already legal in some states. Overturning Roe V. Wade and Planned Parenthood vs. Casey would only return abortion to state control, where each state can each decide how to regulate abortion. It would not make abortion illegal across the country. In fact, only four states have “trigger laws” that would outlaw abortion should the precedent be overturned.

Wen went for an emotional appeal. “I see every day what’s at stake,” she said, sharing how she had once treated a woman whose cousin had attempted an abortion on her and who ended up dying in the ER because “she didn’t have access to health care.” First of all, abortion isn’t care. Abortion is murder. Further, almost no abortions are done to save the life of the mother, and exceptions based on the mother’s health are standard in pro-life legislation.

The second simplest fact people need to keep in mind is: abortion doesn’t pose any danger to you whatsoever if you don’t try one.

Yes, some women are pressured, even coerced, into abortions. The people who would do that must be brought to justice, and women can seek help from law enforcement and pregnancy centers. Pressure from family or a partner is not an excuse to kill your child. And even if Roe were overturned, pressured women would still overwhelmingly have access to at least first-trimester abortions.

The bottom line: No, women’s lives are not at stake with overturning Roe v. Wade.

5. Abortion is only a tiny part of what Planned Parenthood does.

When co-host Sunny Hostin challenged the transparency of Planned Parenthood’s frequent claim that abortion only constitutes 3 percent of their services, saying the Washington Post found it to be “more like 12 percent,” Wen said, “I disagree. Just like any every major health-care organization that I’ve ever worked for, Planned Parenthood follows the law and makes clear what are the services we offer, what are the procedures that we perform…over 90 percent of the services that we perform are preventive care services.”

In the 2016-2017 fiscal year, Planned Parenthood performed 321,384 abortion procedures. This is fewer than pregnancy tests (1,071,642), breast exams (336,614), reversible contraception (1,854,518), emergency contraception (730,329), and STI testing and treatment (4,434,039), and indeed, it is about 3.3 percent of total services rendered, according to their 2016 report.

If you only tally up preventative services (e.g., excluding line items such as adoption referrals, emergency contraception, and treatments for urinary tract infections), the percentage of preventative care services out of the total services is about 76.5 percent, not 90 percent. In any case, dividing total services by abortion procedures is a misleading way to characterize the role abortion plays in Planned Parenthood’s business model. That was the issue Hostin wanted addressed, and Wen dodged it.

By my rough estimate, abortions account for two-thirds (66.3 percent) of Planned Parenthood’s revenue from services rendered.

A better, more transparent way to assess this is what percentage of Planned Parenthood’s revenue comes from abortion. Any business owner would tell you the same. If a company makes 2 cents off red widgets and 80 percent of their sales are red widgets, but makes 20 cents off blue widgets though they’re only 20 percent of sales, clearly the 40 percent of revenue coming from blue widgets is a very important part of their business.

The cost of a chemical abortion (i.e., the abortion pill) ranges from $300 to $800, according to the American Pregnancy Association.  A second-trimester abortion could be over $2,000. According to the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control, 91.5 percent of abortions are performed in the first trimester, 7.2 percent are induced in the second trimester, and 1.3 percent are in the third trimester.

So if we take a middle estimate, like $550, for the cost of first-trimester abortions, assuming Planned Parenthood abortions follow the overall distribution among first, second, and third trimesters, we get $161,736,498 of revenue. If we take $1,500 as a reasonable estimate for second-trimester abortions (we’ll lump in third trimester since the percentage is so small), we get another $409,764,600 of revenue.

In total, that’s an estimated $571,501,098 Planned Parenthood made off abortions in 2016 alone. Planned Parenthood makes an estimated $571.5 million off abortion. Now, apply that to their revenue statement.

Total Planned Parenthood revenue from services was $861.8 million in the 2016-2017 fiscal year (sum of line items 1 and 2 on page 34 of the report; i.e. excluding donor revenue but including any government grants they receive, since they don’t provide a separate figure for that). This means that, by my rough estimate, abortions account for two-thirds (66.3 percent) of Planned Parenthood’s revenue from services rendered. If you include “other operating revenue” ($65.1 million) in the total, abortions still bring in 61.7 percent of total non-donor revenue.

Considering Planned Parenthood performs roughly a third of all abortions in America, this is a much more reasonable number to share with the public than “3 percent of total services,” or even less than 10 percent of services, as Wen suggested, to characterize the role abortion plays in the organization’s business model.

6. No federal dollars paying for abortions.

“I want to clarify…There are no federal taxpayer dollars that go towards abortions…Planned Parenthood doesn’t get a check from the federal government. It’s not as if they get a check written every year about federal funding. Planned Parenthood, just like every hospital, gets reimbursed for medical services like breast cancer screenings, like cervical cancer screenings, like birth control.”

This claim is technically true, but practically false. Currently, 17 states fund abortion through Medicaid, which is funded partially by states and partially by the federal government. At least one of those states, California, does not even require abortions to be “medically necessary” to qualify for tax-provided Medi-Cal funding. The fact that Planned Parenthood receives federal funding in one area means, of course, that they have more state funds available for other areas, including abortions.

Oregon recently adopted a law that effectively pays for universal abortion for Oregon residents. This, too, is made possible by federal dollars. As I wrote last year,

The Hyde Amendment currently prohibits the Federal government from funding abortions, but Oregon still receives federal dollars for its numerous programs. The Health Authority received $11.5 billion from the federal government for the 2015-2016 Biennium, drawing only $2.1 billion from the General Fund and $6 billion from “Other Funds,” as well as $11 million from the Lottery Fund.

The General Fund’s contribution to the Health Authority will effectively quintuple through this act, but funding is just a game of allocation. Because the state receives federal dollars for its other programs to the tune of $21.58 billion, it can allocate more of the state’s general tax money toward programs like this one. Indeed, it may even be able to receive federal money for the parts of this bill that don’t directly pertain to abortion.

The bottom line is that so long as Oregon receives federal funding, citizens across the country are forced into indirectly helping facilitate the ending of human lives—for whatever reason the mother may give.

Moreover, federal reimbursement rate for “family planning services” is 90 percent. While those do not include abortions because of the Hyde amendment, it certainly provides a lot of money to Planned Parenthood. In 2016-2017, government funding (state and federal) constituted 37 percent of their total revenue.

7. Health care shouldn’t be political.

“Health care shouldn’t be political. Needing medications for your children should be political.”

The government has been deeply involved in health care for many decades (especially since the establishment of Medicaid and Medicare in 1965), and the Supreme Court has made numerous rulings about health care, particularly the intersection of religious freedom and “reproductive care.” Health care is political.

Abortion especially is highly political, because of the government’s efforts to enshrine it and because it is a highly controversial ethical decision that virtually everyone agrees needs to be regulated in some way, from only allowing licensed practitioners to perform them, to parental consent, to outlawing it altogether. There’s no cramming those worms back into the can.

‘Abortion is health care’ is a lie that Planned Parenthood has been hawking for decades in the public square.

While this line is emotionally appealing, “abortion is health care” is a lie that Planned Parenthood has been hawking for decades in the public square. When abortion is wrapped up in this category, you can simply assert your position that health care “shouldn’t be political,” and any opponent will have a hard time arguing with that question.

Case in point: Abby Huntsman’s response to this statement was, “I agree with that,” perhaps not realizing that Wen had subverted the entire pro-life argument she’d presented—that federal money shouldn’t go to organizations that provide abortions—by defining abortion as health care.

Wen is pushing the same propaganda that her Planned Parenthood predecessor Cecile Richards did, doubling down on the “abortion is health care” meme. As a doctor and a mother, who claims to reach conclusions off “the data,” she should be held to the highest standard.

Indeed, as a smart, accomplished, articulate doctor, pesky questions like “When does human life begin?” and whether women should be informed of the developmental milestones of their fetuses before consenting to an abortion should be easy for her to answer. Hopefully future interviewers will have the courage to ask such questions. Until then, the least Wen can do is stop misleading the public.

Source: 7 Lies Planned Parenthood’s New President Pushed On ‘The View’

Huckabee: John Kerry Meeting with Iranians ‘Makes the Case’ for First Logan Act Conviction

While speaking Sunday on “Fox & Friends,” former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee weighed in on the report former Secretary of State John Kerry held private meetings with Iranian officials in an attempt to save the Iran nuclear deal. Huckabee said could “make the case” for a violation of the Logan Act. “John Kerry is the only guy I know that wants to bring back the Edsel, MySpace, and other failed enterprises,” Huckabee stated. “This is why John Kerry really is a joke, but the sad thing is what he’s doing is not funny. What he’s doing is both a violation of the Logan Act … I think he makes the case for actually getting convicted of it. The second is the Foreign Agent Registration Act, or FARA. I think he’s violating both.” He added that Kerry is “violating” a “sense of protocol” and he “owes the country a big apology” for his meetings.

Source: Huckabee: John Kerry Meeting with Iranians ‘Makes the Case’ for First Logan Act Conviction

Lisa Page Testimony: Trump-Russia Collusion Still Unproven by Time of Rosenstein’s Appointment of Robert Mueller as Special Counsel — The Gateway Pundit

Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page

Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page said in her testimony that there was zero evidence Trump colluded with Russia by the time Rosenstein appointed Robert Mueller as special counsel according to a transcript obtained by Fox News’ Catherine Herridge. 

So Robert Mueller was appointed as special counsel without naming a crime and without evidence of a crime.

Via Fox News:

More than nine months after the FBI opened its highly classified counterintelligence investigation into alleged coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia, FBI lawyer Lisa Page said investigators still could not say whether there was collusion, according to a transcript of Page’s recent closed-door deposition reviewed by Fox News.

“I think this represents that even as far as May 2017, we still couldn’t answer the question,” Page said.

Page was responding to Republican Rep. John Ratcliffe of Texas, who wanted more information about a May 2017 text where Page, and her then colleague and lover FBI agent Peter Strzok discussed the merits of joining Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team.
Page sat for the transcribed interview before the House Judiciary and Oversight committees in mid-July as part of a joint congressional investigation into the Justice Department’s handling of the Russia and Clinton email probes.

According to the transcript, Page stopped mid-answer.”…sorry. Can I consult with counsel? I’m sorry. I need to consult with FBI counsel for a moment.”

“I cannot provide the specifics of a confidential interview,” Ratcliffe told Fox News when asked for comment. “But I can say that Lisa Page left me with the impression, based on her own words, that the lead investigator of the Russian collusion case, Peter Strzok, had found no evidence of collusion after nearly a year.”

As previously reported. ONE DAY after Mueller was appointed special counsel, Strzok sent Page a text saying “there’s no big there there,” when discussing whether he would join Mueller’s team.

Rep Ratcliffe read this text exchange to Page and asked her to explain it and if Strzok actually believed there was no collusion to which she replied:

“No, I don’t think so. I think it’s a reflection of us still not knowing…It still existed in the scope of possibility that there would be literally nothing, probably not nothing nothing, as we probably knew more than that by that point. But in the scheme of the possible outcomes, the most serious one obviously being crimes serious enough to warrant impeachment; but on the other scale that, you know, maybe an unwitting person was, in fact, involved in the release of information, but it didn’t ultimately touch any senior, you know, people in the administration or on the campaign. And so the text just sort of reflects that spectrum.”

The President tweeted about this new development Monday morning, calling Mueller’s investigation a “totally illegal witch hunt.”

In the second tweet, President Trump said of the text Strzok sent to Page, “Wow, a conspiracy caught?”

Tom Fitton called for Mueller to be shut down.

via Lisa Page Testimony: Trump-Russia Collusion Still Unproven by Time of Rosenstein’s Appointment of Robert Mueller as Special Counsel — The Gateway Pundit

Susan Collins: ‘Puzzling’ Why Kavanaugh Allegation Came So Late

Sen. Susan Collins says it’s “puzzling” why Democrats waited for weeks to come forward with an sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

Source: Susan Collins: ‘Puzzling’ Why Kavanaugh Allegation Came So Late

Democratic senator: We must ‘listen’ to sexual assault victims. Then Clinton rape accuser speaks up.

Democratic senator: We must ‘listen’ to sexual assault victims. Then Clinton rape accuser speaks up.

Amid a woman’s allegations that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh groped her when they were teenagers more than 35 years ago, Democrats are jumping on the development and saying the judge’s confirmation vote should be delayed pending a full investigation.

Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin was among them:

The Illinois lawmaker added a familiar declaration that we all must “listen” to sexual assault survivors — and “regardless of the age of those involved or when the alleged attack took place.”

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Well, one woman — who for many years has been issuing a sexual assault allegation against former President Bill Clinton — took Durbin at his word:

When #MeToo works against the left

Democrats and those of their ilk sometimes have a tough time getting riled up when one of their own is accused of sexual assault — and that’s been painfully true when it comes to Clinton, whom Broaddrick accused of raping her when he was attorney general of Arkansas.

Hillary Clinton herself dismissed Broaddrick’s claims — as well as those of Kathleen Wiley and Paula Jones — against her husband, saying there were “clearly in the past.”

In addition, then-CBS News anchor Dan Rather offered the following thoughts to radio host Don Imus in 1999 about why NBC News may have been declining to air a Broaddrick interview on the subject:

They are nervous about, number one, whether this information is accurate, whether it’s really true or not. And then number two, even if it does it turn out to be true, it happened a long time ago, and number three, they’ve gotta be figuring maybe, just maybe the American public has heard all they want to hear about this and are saying you know, “Next. Let’s move on to the next thing.”

When Imus said he’d heard Broaddrick had hoped her story “went away this week,” Rather replied, “Well, let’s hope she gets her way with that.”

Interestingly, Rather — who stepped down at CBS News after his 2004 report on President George W. Bush’s national guard service used documents that weren’t verified as authentic — hasn’t yet weighed in on the Kavanaugh controversy. But he did tweet a link to an article sympathetic to Kavanaugh’s accuser, saying the piece offers “very important context and perspective.”

(H/T: Louder With Crowder)

Source: Democratic senator: We must ‘listen’ to sexual assault victims. Then Clinton rape accuser speaks up.

Putin & Erdogan agree Idlib buffer zone to avert new Syria crisis

Russia and Turkey have agreed a “demilitarized zone” between militants and government troops in Syria’s Idlib, President Vladimir Putin said after hours-long talks with Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan focused on solving the crisis.

Source: Putin & Erdogan agree Idlib buffer zone to avert new Syria crisis

September 17, 2018 Afternoon Verse Of The Day

Fifteen Words of Hope

(2 Corinthians 5:21)

He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. (5:21)

It began with one of history’s earliest recorded instances of biological warfare. In 1347 a Mongol army besieging the Genoese trading post of Caffa in the Crimea (modern Ukraine) catapulted the bodies of bubonic plague victims over the town’s walls. The terrified defenders fled to Italy, carrying with them the deadly plague bacteria (and the rats and fleas that spread them). Over the next three years the plague spread throughout Europe in the massive epidemic now known as the Black Death. Before the epidemic ran its course an estimated twenty million people—approximately one-third to one-half of Europe’s population—perished. The coming centuries would see recurring outbreaks of the bubonic plague, which would remain a dangerous, unchecked killer until the development of antibiotics in the twentieth century.

Though the Black Death is the most infamous epidemic in history, it was not the only one. The influenza epidemic of 1918–19 killed an estimated thirty to fifty million people, and several million more died at about that same time in an outbreak of typhus in eastern Europe. Other infectious diseases, such as malaria, yellow fever, and in more recent times AIDS, have also claimed uncounted millions of victims.

But there is one plague that is more widespread and deadly than all others combined; it is, as the Puritan writer Ralph Venning called it, the “plague of plagues.” It affects every person who ever lived—and is 100 percent fatal. Unlike other plagues, which cause only physical death, this plague causes spiritual and eternal death as well. It is the plague of sin.

Because Adam’s fall plunged the entire human race into sin (Rom. 5:12–21), all people are sinners from birth. “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity,” lamented David, “and in sin my mother conceived me” (Ps. 51:5). In Psalm 58:3 he added, “The wicked are estranged from the womb; these who speak lies go astray from birth” (cf. Gen. 8:21; Isa. 48:8). Not only are all people sinners by nature, they are also sinners by action. To the Romans Paul wrote, “There is none righteous, not even one” (Rom. 3:10; cf. Pss. 14:1–3; 53:1–3). Later in that chapter he added, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23); consequently, “there is no man who does not sin” (1 Kings 8:46), and no one can say, “I have cleansed my heart, I am pure from my sin” (Prov. 20:9).

The inevitable outcome for all those infected by the sin plague is death. Ezekiel 18:20 states plainly, “The person who sins will die” (cf. v. 4). Adam’s tragic epitaph, “and he died” (Gen. 5:5) will be written for all his descendants (cf. vv. 8, 11, 14, 17, 20, 27, 31; 9:29). Nor is the prognosis any better in the spiritual realm. Sin produces two disastrous spiritual consequences: alienation from God in this life (Eph. 2:12; 4:18; Col. 1:21), and unrelenting punishment in hell in eternity (Matt. 25:41, 46; 2 Thess. 1:9; Rev. 14:9–11; 20:11–15).

But the good news of the gospel is that there is a cure for the sinner infected by the deadly sin epidemic. God, in His mercy and love, provided a remedy for sin—the sacrifice of His Son. The Lord Jesus Christ “released us from our sins by His blood” (Rev. 1:5), “for by one offering He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified” (Heb. 10:14). Those who experience “redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of [their] trespasses, according to the riches of His grace” (Eph. 1:7) are cured from sin’s deadly spiritual effects. As a result, they have “passed out of death into life” (John 5:24; 1 John 3:14), and “are no longer strangers and aliens, but … are fellow citizens with the saints, and are of God’s household” (Eph. 2:19).

How God made the cure possible is the theme of verses 18–20. In those three verses, Paul described the glorious truth of reconciliation—that the sin-severed relationship between holy God and unregenerate sinners can be restored “through” and “in” Christ. But reconciliation raises some profound questions. How can an absolutely and infinitely holy God be reconciled to sinners? How can His just and holy law, which demands the condemnation and punishment of all who violate it, be satisfied? How can those who deserve no mercy receive it? How can God uphold true righteousness and give grace? How can the demands of both justice and love be met? How can God be both “just and the justifier” (Rom. 3:26) of sinners?

As hard as those questions seem, one brief verse answers them all and resolves the seeming paradox of redemption. With a conciseness and brevity reflective of the Holy Spirit, this one brief sentence, only fifteen words in the Greek text, resolves the dilemma of reconciliation. This sentence reveals the essence of the atonement, expresses the heart of the gospel message, and articulates the most glorious truth in Scripture—how fallen man’s sin-sundered relationship to God can be restored. Verse 21 is like a cache of rare jewels, each deserving of a careful, reverential examination under the magnifying glass of Scripture. It yields truths about the benefactor, the substitute, the beneficiaries, and the benefit.

The Benefactor

He made (5:21a)

The end of verse 20 reveals the antecedent of He to be God the Father, as seen in the previous chapter of this volume. Reconciliation is His plan, and it could not occur unless He initiated and applied it. Sinners cannot devise their own religious approach to God, because they are “dead in [their] trespasses and sins” (Eph. 2:1). The damning lie of false religion is that man can reconcile himself to God by his own efforts, but all attempts to do so are futile. Sinners’ “righteous deeds are like a filthy garment; and all of [them] wither like a leaf, and [their] iniquities, like the wind, take [them] away” (Isa. 64:6). As a result, “There is none righteous, not even one” (Rom. 3:10).

Not even the “Israelites, to whom belongs the adoption as sons, and the glory and the covenants and the giving of the Law and the temple service and the promises, whose are the fathers, and from whom is the Christ according to the flesh” (Rom. 9:4–5) could devise a way to reconcile themselves to God by their own efforts. Romans 10:1–3, expressing Paul’s deep concern for them, reflects that truth:

Brethren, my heart’s desire and my prayer to God for them is for their salvation. For I testify about them that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge. For not knowing about God’s righteousness and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God.

Despite their zeal for God, they had not achieved salvation, because they sought it through their own righteousness. The religion of human achievement, whether practiced by Jews or Gentiles, can never bring reconciliation with God. The only way reconciliation can take place is if God reached out to sinners; and He did by the sacrifice of His Son.

Jesus therefore did not go to the cross because fickle people turned on Him, though they did. He did not go to the cross because demon-deceived false religious leaders plotted His death, though they did. He did not go to the cross because Judas betrayed Him, though he did. He did not die because an angry, unruly mob intimidated a Roman governor into sentencing Him to crucifixion, though they did. Jesus went to the cross as the outworking of God’s plan to reconcile sinners to Himself. In the first Christian sermon ever preached, Peter declared to the nation of Israel that Jesus was “delivered over [to death] by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God” (Acts 2:23; cf. 3:18; 13:27; Matt. 26:24; Luke 22:22; John 18:11; Heb. 10:5, 7).

Only God could design an atonement for sin that would satisfy the demands of His justice, propitiate His wrath, and be consistent with His love, grace, and mercy. Only God could conceive the plan in which the second person of the Trinity would, “being found in appearance as a man, [humble] Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (Phil. 2:8). Only God knew what it would take to rescue sinners “from the domain of darkness, and [transfer them] to the kingdom of His beloved Son” (Col. 1:13), making them “qualified … to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light” (Col. 1:12). Only God knew how to make sinners deserving of hell acceptable in His sight and fit to spend eternity in His presence. Therefore, only God could author and execute the plan of redemption and reconcile sinners to Himself. That plan is so utterly beyond the comprehension of the unregenerate that it seems foolishness to them (1 Cor. 1:18, 23; 2:14). No religion of human design has anything like it.

Reconciliation flows out of God’s love; it was because He “so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16). “God demonstrates His own love toward us,” wrote Paul, that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8); though “we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son” (Rom. 5:10). Because “God [is] rich in mercy, [and] because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, [He] made us alive together with Christ (Eph. 2:4–5).

It is this emphasis on a loving God reaching out to sinners that sets Christianity apart from the false religions of the world. The gods of those religions are sometimes depicted as cruel, angry, and hostile and hence to be feared and appeased—even by such appalling means as child sacrifice (cf. 2 Kings 16:3; 23:10; Jer. 32:35; Ezek. 16:21; 23:37). Others are viewed as apathetic and indifferent to the worshipers who grovel before them, like Baal, whose followers Elijah mockingly challenged, “Call out with a loud voice, for he is a god; either he is occupied or gone aside, or is on a journey, or perhaps he is asleep and needs to be awakened” (1 Kings 18:27). Their devotees are often driven to desperate measures to get their attention (cf. 1 Kings 18:28).

But Christianity proclaims the glorious, liberating truth that God is neither hostile nor indifferent but a loving Savior by nature. He does not need to be appeased (and indeed cannot be by any human means). Instead, He Himself has provided His own appeasement for justice and the means for sinners to become His beloved children through the sacrifice of His Son (Rom. 8:32; 1 John 4:10, 14), which fully propitiated His wrath. As a result, those who come to Him through faith are “justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 3:24). Because Christ’s sacrifice perfectly satisified the demands of God’s righteousness and justice, God freely offers forgiveness and reconciliation: “Ho! Every one who thirsts, come to the waters; and you who have no money come, buy and eat. Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost” (Isa. 55:1; cf. Rev. 22:17).

Reconciliation required the death of God’s Son because “the wages of sin is death” (Rom 6:23) and therefore, “The person who sins will die” (Ezek. 18:20). The slaughter of countless millions of sacrificial animals under the Old Testament economy graphically illustrated that truth. Though unable to atone for sin, since “it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins” (Heb. 10:4), those sacrifices forcibly drove home the point that sin results in death, and death is required to satisfy the demands of God’s law when it is violated. They also made the people who incessantly offered them long for the final substitute to whom the sacrifices pointed (cf. Isa. 53). And when in accordance with the Father’s plan the final substitute came, He willingly laid down His life to bring the final satisfaction to God only pictured in the sacrificial ceremonies and ritual killings of animals (John 10:11, 18; Phil. 2:7–8).

The Substitute

Him who knew no sin to be sin (5:21b)

This designation points unmistakably to the only possible sacrifice for sin. It eliminates every human who ever lived, “for there is no man who does not sin” (1 Kings 8:46), since “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23). Only one who knew no sin of his own could qualify to bear the full wrath of God against the sins of others. The perfect sacrifice for sin would have to be a human being, for only a man could die for other men. Yet he would also have to be God, for only God is sinless. That narrows the field to one, the God-man, Jesus Christ.

In the design of God, the second person of the Trinity became a man (Gal. 4:4–5). The Bible makes it clear that though He had a human mother, the Lord Jesus Christ did not have a human father. Joseph is never referred to as His father, because He was conceived by the Holy Spirit (Matt. 1:18, 20; Luke 1:35). As the God-man, He was the perfect One to be the sacrifice for sin (John 1:29; 1 Peter 1:19), fulfilling the Old Testament picture of the unblemished sacrificial lamb (Ex. 12:5; Ezek 46:13).

The impeccability (sinlessness) of Jesus Christ is universally affirmed in Scripture, by believers and unbelievers alike. In John 8:46 Jesus challenged His Jewish opponents, “Which one of you convicts Me of sin?” Before sentencing Him to death, Pilate repeatedly affirmed His innocence, declaring, “I find no guilt in this man” (Luke 23:4; cf. vv. 14, 22). The repentant thief on the cross said of Jesus, “This man has done nothing wrong” (Luke 23:41). Even the hardened, callous Roman centurion in charge of the execution detail admitted, “Certainly this man was innocent” (Luke 23:47).

The apostles, those who most closely observed Jesus’ life during His earthly ministry, also testified to His sinlessness. Peter publicly proclaimed Him to be the “Holy and Righteous One” (Acts 3:14). In his first epistle he declared Jesus to be “unblemished and spotless” (1 Peter 1:19); one “who committed no sin” (2:22); and “just” (3:18). John also testified to His sinlessness, writing, “in Him there is no sin” (1 John 3:5). The inspired writer of Hebrews notes that “we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin” (Heb. 4:15), because He is “holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens” (7:26).

But the most powerful testimony concerning Christ’s sinlessness comes from God the Father. On two occasions He said of Christ, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased” (Matt. 3:17; 17:5). Jesus’ unbroken fellowship with the Father also testifies to His sinlessness; in John 10:30 He said simply, “I and the Father are one” (cf. 14:9).

After presenting Jesus as the absolutely holy substitute for sinners, the text makes the remarkable statement that God made Him to be sin. That important phrase requires a careful understanding. It does not mean that Christ became a sinner; the above-mentioned verses establishing His utter sinlessness unequivocally rule out that possibility. As God in human flesh, He could not possibly have committed any sin or in any way violated God’s law. It is equally unthinkable that God, whose “eyes are too pure to approve evil” (Hab. 1:13; cf. James 1:13), would make anyone a sinner, let alone His own Holy Son. He was the unblemished Lamb while on the cross, personally guilty of no evil.

Isaiah 53:4–6 describes the only sense in which Jesus could have been made sin:

Surely our griefs He Himself bore,

And our sorrows He carried;

Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken,

Smitten of God, and afflicted.

But He was pierced through for our transgressions,

He was crushed for our iniquities;

The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him,

And by His scourging we are healed.

All of us like sheep have gone astray,

Each of us has turned to his own way;

But the Lord has caused the iniquity of us all

To fall on Him.

Christ was not made a sinner, nor was He punished for any sin of His own. Instead, the Father treated him as if He were a sinner by charging to His account the sins of everyone who would ever believe. All those sins were charged against Him as if He had personally committed them, and He was punished with the penalty for them on the cross, experiencing the full fury of God’s wrath unleashed against them all. It was at that moment that “Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, … ‘My God, My God, why have You forsaken me?’ ” (Matt. 27:46). It is crucial, therefore, to understand that the only sense in which Jesus was made sin was by imputation. He was personally pure, yet officially culpable; personally holy, yet forensically guilty. But in dying on the cross Christ did not become evil like we are, nor do redeemed sinners become inherently as holy as He is. God credits believers’ sin to Christ’s account, and His righteousness to theirs.

In Galatians 3:10, 13 Paul further explained the necessity of believers’ sins being imputed to Christ. In verse 10 he wrote that “as many as are of the works of the Law are under a curse; for it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone who does not abide by all things written in the book of the law, to perform them.’ ” There is no way for sinners to reconcile themselves to God, because no one is able to “abide by all things written in the book of the law to perform them.” Violating even one precept of the Law warrants eternal punishment in hell. Thus, the entire human race is cursed and unable to do anything to lift that curse. Therefore, the only reason believers can be reconciled to God is because “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us—for it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree’ ” (v. 13). Were it not for the fact that “while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly” (Rom. 5:6), no one could be reconciled to God.

The Beneficiaries

on our behalf, (5:21c)

The antecedent of our is the phrase “ambassadors for Christ” in verse 20; those to whom the “word of reconciliation” was committed (v. 19), who have been reconciled to God (v. 18), and are new creatures in Christ (v. 17). Christ’s substitutionary death was efficacious only for those who would believe (John 1:12; 3:16–18; Rom. 10:9–10); all those whom the Father gives Him and draws to Him (John 6:37, 65). (For further information on this point, see the discussion of verse 14 in chapter 14 of this volume.) That God raised Jesus from the dead is proof that He accepted His sacrifice on behalf of His people (Rom. 4:25).

The Benefit

so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. (5:21d)

The phrase so that reflects a purpose clause in the Greek text. The benefit of God’s imputing believers’ sins to Christ and His righteousness to them is that they become righteous before Him. They are “found in Him, not having a righteousness of [their] own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith” (Phil. 3:9). The very righteousness God requires before He can accept the sinner is the very righteousness He provides.

Because Jesus paid the full penalty for believers’ sin, God no longer holds it against them. In Psalm 32:1 David wrote, “How blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered!” In Psalm 130:3–4 the psalmist added, “If You, Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand? But there is forgiveness with You, that You may be feared.” In metaphorical pictures of forgiveness, God is said to have removed believers’ sins as far from them as the east is from the west (Ps. 103:12); cast their sins behind His back (Isa. 38:17); promised never to remember them (Isa. 43:25); hidden them from His sight behind a thick cloud (Isa. 44:22); and cast them into the depths of the sea (Mic. 7:19).

Believers experience the blessedness of forgiveness solely by faith in the complete redemption provided by Jesus Christ; “the righteousness of God [comes] through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe” (Rom. 3:22). They are “justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 3:24); therefore, God is “the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus” (Rom. 3:26). In Romans 3:28 Paul stated definitively, “For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law” (cf. 4:5; 5:1; Gal. 2:16; 3:24).

When repentant sinners acknowledge their sin (Ps. 32:5), affirm Jesus as Lord (Rom. 10:9), and trust solely in His completed work on their behalf (Acts 4:12; 16:31), God credits His righteousness to their account. On the cross God treated Jesus as if He had lived our lives with all our sin, so that God could then treat us as if we lived Christ’s life of pure holiness. Our iniquitous life was legally charged to Him on the cross, as if He had lived it, so that His righteous life could be credited to us, as if we lived it. That is the doctrine of justification by imputation—the high point of the gospel. That truth, expressed so concisely and powerfully in this text, is the only cure for the sin plague.[1]

21 Thus far, Paul has been content to give the broadest outlines of the drama of reconciliation, stating merely the relationship between the principal actors, as it were. Now he explains, so far as human language and imagery permit, the “how” of reconciliation. The fifteen Greek words, carefully balanced, almost chiastic, defy final exegetical explanation, dealing as they do with the heart of the atonement.

There are three main ways of understanding the first section of the verse, particularly the second use of hamartia, “to be sin” (GK 281; see Notes). (1) Treated as if he were a sinner, Christ became the object of God’s wrath and bore the penalty and guilt of sin. (2) When Christ in his incarnation assumed human nature “in the likeness of sinful flesh” (Ro 8:3 RSV), God made him to be “sin.” (3) In becoming a sacrifice for sin, Christ was made to be sin. The background to the first view is the idea of substitution; to the second, the notion of participation; to the third, the OT concept of sacrifice.

Although the Hebrew term ḥaṭṭāʾt (cf. Ex 29:14; Lev 4:3 et al.) may mean both “sin” and “sacrifice for sin” (or “sin offering”; see Notes, esp. references to L. Sabourin’s works), it seems that Paul’s intent is to say more than that Christ was made a sin offering and yet less than that Christ became a sinner. So complete was the identification of the sinless Christ with the sin of the sinner, including its dire guilt and its dread consequence of separation from God, that Paul could say profoundly, “God caused Christ, who knew nothing of sin, to be sin for our sake.” Christ “came to stand in that relation to God which normally is the result of sin, estranged from God and the object of his wrath” (Barrett, 180).

Paul’s declaration of Christ’s sinlessness may be compared with the statements of Peter (1 Pe 2:22, quoting Isa 53:9), John (1 Jn 3:5), and the author of Hebrews (Heb 4:15; 7:26). The sin with which Christ totally identified himself was extrinsic to him. He was without any acquaintance with sin that might have come through his ever having a sinful attitude or doing a sinful act. Both inwardly and outwardly he was impeccable. The one who was devoid of sin took the place of those who were devoid of righteousness when he bore the consequences of their sin. As a result, they gain the right standing before God that they lacked. The purpose and result of God’s causing Christ “to be sin” was that in Christ believers “might become the righteousness of God,” i.e., might become justified or righteous in the sight of God (see Notes) by being in Christ, who is their righteousness (1 Co 1:30).[2]

5:21 / Since there is no transition between verses 20 and 21, it is difficult to know exactly how verse 21 relates to the foregoing. Apparently, verse 21 continues the direct citation of Paul’s message of reconciliation from verse 20, providing, in effect, substantiation for the exhortation to be reconciled with God. As in verse 19, the acting subject is God; however, unlike verse 19, Christ is the object of the action. This is the only passage in which Paul refers directly to the sinlessness of Christ (who had [lit., “knew”] no sin), although other passages seem to presuppose it (cf. Rom. 5:19; 8:3; Phil. 2:8). Paul’s description of Christ in our text conforms to a traditional expectation about the Messiah, as well as to the statement about the Suffering Servant of the Lord (cf. Isa. 53:9: “For he did no lawlessness [anomia]”).

Can the same be said for what follows? God made Messiah sin for us. Interestingly enough, a text from Qumran (CD 14.18–19) expects that the Messiah of Aaron and Israel will appear and “atone for their iniquity.” The expression “Messiah of Aaron and Israel” may be elliptical for “Messiah of Aaron and Messiah of Israel” (so A. S. van der Woude). Even so, this text does not necessarily include the substitutionary aspect which 2 Corinthians 5:21 has. The sinless Christ was made sin “for us” (hyper hēmōn) in the sense that he took on the sinners’ curse in his atoning death on the cross. According to Galatians 3:13, Christ redeemed believers from the curse of the law by becoming a curse “for us” (hyper hēmōn), for it is written in Deuteronomy 21:23, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree.” As we have seen above, Paul the Pharisee probably applied this ot text against the crucified Christ while he knew Christ “according to the flesh” (cf. 2 Cor. 5:16). After his encounter with the resurrected Lord on the way to Damascus, however, he saw Christ in a different light, but continued to apply Deuteronomy 21:23 to the death of Christ, this time in a positive way as a reference to the substitutionary death of Christ for sinners. Paul realized that Christ was not the accursed sinner before God, but rather the deliverer who had come to die for the remission of sins of others. As he states in 2 Corinthians 5:14, “one died for all” (cf. 1 Cor. 15:3; Gal. 1:4; Rom. 4:25; 5:6, 8; 6:10; 1 Thess. 5:10). Paul understood the death of Christ in light of the sinless Suffering Servant of the Lord: “The Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all” (Isa. 53:6); “he poured out himself to death, and was numbered with the transgressors” (cf. Isa. 53:12). It is also possible that becoming “sin” (hamartia) refers to becoming a “sin offering,” for in the lxx hamartia is sometimes used of the sin offering (cf. Lev. 4:21, 24; 5:12; 6:18). The Suffering Servant is said to be made an “offering for sin” (Isa. 53:10).

The purpose for which God made sinless Christ a substitute for sinners is that in him we might become the righteousness of God. As Paul stated in a previous letter to the Corinthians, “It is because of him [sc. God] that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, righteousness, holiness and redemption” (1 Cor. 1:30). It is clear that the righteousness of God comes from him and is conferred on believers who are in Christ. Godless sinners, who previously possessed no righteousness of their own, receive righteousness in sinless Christ who, by a process of substitution, became a sin offering for them. In other words, believers identify with Christ in such a way that they die with Christ to the penalty for their sin (i.e., the curse of the law) and also share with Christ in his resurrection life and vindicated status.[3]

21. He made him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become God’s righteousness in him.

This is one of the epistle’s outstanding verses that summarizes God’s good news to sinners. It discloses the meaning of the word reconciliation, a word that until now Paul has not fully explained. In his discussion, the question always remained as to why God was willing to overcome his anger toward sin as he reached out to us in love and peace. Now the apostle explains that God took his sinless Son and made him the sinbearer in our place. God had his Son pay the death penalty for our sins, so that we might be set free and declared righteous in his sight. Christ redeemed us by taking upon himself the curse that rested on us (Gal. 3:13).

  • Contrast. A cursory reading of this verse reveals that Paul writes a number of opposites. Viewing the verse in two parallel columns, we immediately see a comparison.
He made

so that



who knew no sin

might become

to be sin

God’s righteousness

on our behalf

in him

The differences between Christ and us are obvious: sinlessness and sinfulness (implicit), sin and righteousness, substitution and source. Having created perfect human beings, God established a special relationship with Adam and Eve. When they fell into sin, they offended their creator God and caused alienation. As their judge, God called them to account for their disobedience and sentenced them (Gen. 3:8–19). An earthly judge does not bear any personal animosity toward a person who is accused, proven guilty, and sentenced. Nor does the judge establish a friendship with an offender. This is not so between God and the sinner, because at the dawn of human history God established a personal relationship with human beings. True, Adam and Eve and their descendants have offended God by their sins, but God continued his relationship with them by removing the curse of sin through his Son Jesus Christ. Through him, God imputed to his people righteousness, extended to them his friendship, and effected peace between himself and them.

  • Significance. “[God] made him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf.” Paul designates Christ as “him who knew no sin.” Even though Jesus’ sinlessness is implied throughout the New Testament, in only a few places do writers specifically refer to his purity. For instance, disputing with the religious establishment of his day, Jesus challenged the Jews to prove him guilty of sin (John 8:46; compare 7:18). The writer of Hebrews states that Jesus was identical to us but without sin (4:15; refer to 7:26; 9:14). Quoting Isaiah 53:9, Peter writes, “He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth” (1 Peter 2:22; see 3:18). And John confesses that Jesus “appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin” (1 John 3:5).

“[Jesus] knew no sin,” Paul writes. Yet Jesus must have been gravely offended and deeply grieved when he observed and continually experienced in himself the effects of human sin. He was “a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering” (Isa. 53:3). During his earthly ministry, he was frequently confronted by Satan and his evil cohorts, yet he never succumbed to sin. Even though he appeared “in the likeness of sinful man” (Rom. 8:3), he kept himself free from sin by showing his constant love to God and humankind.

Although Jesus was tempted by Satan, he did not become a sinner. When God made him sin by imputing to him our sin, he regarded him as the sinbearer, not as a sinner. True, as the Lamb of God, Christ removed the sin of the world by his sacrificial death on the cross (John 1:29; 3:14–15). But presently Paul portrays not a sacrificial offering but rather a courtroom scene in which a judge either sentences the guilty or releases the innocent. By imputing sin to Jesus Christ, God imputes righteousness to his people. Christ took our place as the head of redeemed humanity; he is our representative speaking to God in our defense (1 John 2:1).

Also, Christ became our substitute by taking our place before God to receive the punishment that was due us. Standing before God, Jesus bore the greatest burden of sin ever. He paid for sin when he was spiritually severed from God and was physically dying on the cross (Matt. 27:46, 50). Jesus took upon himself our sins and through his atonement made us recipients of God’s righteousness.

  • Effect. “So that we might become God’s righteousness in him.” The good news of Christ’s death is that our sin, which separated us from God, has been removed; he accepts us as if we had never sinned at all. Because of Christ’s death, God declares us innocent. He acquits us, drops all charges against us, and grants us the gift of righteousness. Sixteenth-century German theologian Zacharius Ursinus put this truth succinctly in these words:

God grants and credits to me

the perfect satisfaction, righteousness,

and holiness of Christ,

as if I had never sinned nor been a sinner,

as if I had been perfectly obedient

as Christ was obedient for me.

Let us briefly discuss the meaning of the phrase God’s righteousness. Is it righteousness that belongs to God (subjective genitive)? Or is it righteousness that he receives from us (objective genitive)? Or does righteousness originate with God and then is granted to us (genitive of origin)?

The second of these three questions describes a circumstance that is improbable if not impossible. And the third question would expect the answer that we have received complete righteousness, but we can say only that our righteousness is in Christ. His righteousness is imputed to us in justification, which is a declaratory act of God. We do well to answer the first question and say that righteousness, akin to holiness, is an inherent characteristic that belongs to God. He expresses this attribute by judging sin as a violation of his holiness. The righteousness that God possesses must be understood in terms of judgment, justice, and grace. Through Christ Jesus, God has placed us within the context of that righteousness and has reconciled us to himself. Hence, reconciliation and righteousness are the proverbial two sides of the same coin.[4]

5:21. The content of the appeal is clarified. Christ never committed sin, but He voluntarily became a sin offering (the likely sense of to be sin on our behalf) by bearing the penalty for sin as a substitute. He was punished for the sins of others. The purpose for his death was that those who believe might have a righteous standing before God. The sinless One died so that sinners might live.[5]

21 Before continuing his appeal to the Corinthians, Paul makes a highly compressed but extremely profound statement about the work of Christ: God made him who had no sin to be sin for us. Various interpretations of this have been suggested: that Christ was made a sinner; that he was made a sin-offering; that he was made to bear the consequences of our sins. The first suggestion is rightly rejected out of hand. The second can be supported by appeal to Paul’s use of sacrificial terminology elsewhere (cf. Rom. 3:25; 1 Cor. 5:7) and to the fact that in the Greek version of Lv. 4:24 and 5:12 the word translated sin here is used to mean sin offering. The third interpretation is supported by appeal to Gal. 3:13, where Paul speaks of the death of Christ in terms of his bearing the consequences of our sins: ‘Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree”.’ This interpretation is further supported by the fact that the statement God made him who had no sin to be sin is balanced by the opposite statement, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. If becoming the righteousness of God means that God has pronounced judgment in our favour and put us in right relationship with himself, then to become sin, as the opposite of that, would mean that God had pronounced judgment against Christ (because he took upon himself the burden of our sins; cf. Is. 53:4–6, 12) with the result that his relationship with God was momentarily, but terribly beyond all human understanding, severed (cf. Mt. 27:46) for us. It is then no wonder that the love of Christ was such a strong motivating force in Paul’s life; and once we grasp the significance of the love of Christ for us, it will also be a strong motivating force in our own lives as well.[6]

5:21. Paul now summarized the basis of this message. The Cross epitomized the love of God (John 3:16) and of Christ (John 15:13; Rom. 5:8). The Savior was sinless: He had no sin. He was “without sin” (Heb. 4:15), and “in Him is no sin” (1 John 3:5). He took on Himself the sin of the world (John 1:29; 1 Peter 2:24; 1 John 2:2). God made Him … to be sin for us (cf. Isa. 53:4–6, 10). The sins of the world were placed on Him so that, in turn, His righteousness could be given those who trust Him (Rom. 5:17) and are thus in Him. That gift of righteousness is obtainable only by faith (Rom. 3:22; 6:23; Eph. 2:8–9; Phil. 3:9).[7]

5:21 This verse gives us the doctrinal foundation for our reconciliation. How has God made reconciliation possible? How can He receive guilty sinners who come to Him in repentance and faith? The answer is that the Lord Jesus has effectively dealt with the whole problem of our sins, so now we can be reconciled to God.

In other words, God made Christ to be sin for us—Christ who knew no sinthat we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

We must beware of any idea that on the cross of Calvary the Lord Jesus Christ actually became sinful in Himself. Such an idea is false. Our sins were placed on Him, but they were not in Him. What happened is that God made Him to be a sin-offering on our behalf. Trusting in Him, we are reckoned righteous by God. The claims of the law have been fully satisfied by our Substitute.

What a blessed truth it is that the One who knew no sin was made sin for us, that we who knew no righteousness might become the righteousness of God in Him. No mortal tongue will ever be able to thank God sufficiently for such boundless grace.[8]

5:21 — For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

God took the sins of the whole world and, on the cross, piled them on the back of Jesus Christ, the one person who had never committed a single sin. Jesus took our punishment so that we might receive His righteousness.[9]

[1] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (2003). 2 Corinthians (pp. 209–217). Chicago: Moody Publishers.

[2] Harris, M. J. (2008). 2 Corinthians. In T. Longman III &. Garland, David E. (Ed.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Romans–Galatians (Revised Edition) (Vol. 11, p. 482). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

[3] Scott, J. M. (2011). 2 Corinthians (pp. 141–142). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.

[4] Kistemaker, S. J., & Hendriksen, W. (1953–2001). Exposition of the Second Epistle to the Corinthians (Vol. 19, pp. 200–202). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

[5] Woodall, D. L. (2014). 2 Corinthians. In M. A. Rydelnik & M. Vanlaningham (Eds.), The moody bible commentary (p. 1815). Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

[6] Kruse, C. G. (1994). 2 Corinthians. In D. A. Carson, R. T. France, J. A. Motyer, & G. J. Wenham (Eds.), New Bible commentary: 21st century edition (4th ed., p. 1198). Leicester, England; Downers Grove, IL: Inter-Varsity Press.

[7] Lowery, D. K. (1985). 2 Corinthians. In J. F. Walvoord & R. B. Zuck (Eds.), The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures (Vol. 2, p. 568). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.

[8] MacDonald, W. (1995). Believer’s Bible Commentary: Old and New Testaments. (A. Farstad, Ed.) (p. 1842). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[9] Stanley, C. F. (2005). The Charles F. Stanley life principles Bible: New King James Version (2 Co 5:21). Nashville, TN: Nelson Bibles.

September 17, 2018 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report (US•World•Christian)


The Trump administration will send a message to all U.S. cellphones on Thursday to test a previously unused alert system that aims to warn the public about national emergencies.

White House adviser Kellyanne Conway said on Monday the woman who accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct will be heard as part of sworn testmiony before the committee weighing his nomination.

The United States revoked visas for the family of the Palestine Liberation Organization ambassador, the envoy said on Sunday, the latest development in the worsening relations between the Trump administration and Palestinian leadership.

Uganda’s government on Monday accused the European Union Parliament of meddling in its internal affairs after the legislator passed a resolution deploring the alleged torture of opposition politicians in the East African country.

The International Criminal Court on Monday sentenced Congolese politician Jean-Pierre Bemba to a 300,000 euro fine and a 12 month sentence for witness tampering, but his sentence was reduced to zero due to time served.

Hundreds of Russian Communist Party supporters took to the central square of Vladivostok on Monday to protest against what they said was the rigging of a regional election in favor of a politician backed by President Vladimir Putin.

China will not be content to only play defense in an escalating trade war with the United States, a widely read Chinese tabloid warned, as U.S. President Donald Trump was expected to announce new tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods as early as Monday.

Coca Cola said on Monday it was closely watching the growing marijuana-infused drinks market, responding to a media report that the world’s largest beverage maker was in talks with Canada’s Aurora Cannabis.

AP Top Stories

As rain from the remnants of Hurricane Florence starts to move out of the Carolinas, residents are waiting and watching as rivers across the two states continue to swell and threaten neighborhoods with devastating flooding. Many areas of North Carolina continue to deal with fears of being cut off from relief — power crews, food and supplies — by flooded and washed-out roads.

Billionaire Marc Benioff and his wife, Lynne, are buying Time magazine from the Meredith Corporation for $190 million, the company said in a news release Sunday. The cash deal is expected to close within 30 days.

Women should play a greater role in the training of priests to fight the child abuse “crisis” that has engulfed the Catholic Church, Canadian Cardinal Marc Ouellet has said.

An Afghan official says Taliban attacks in western Farah province since the previous night have killed at least 17 members of the country’s security forces.

Iraq’s parliament Saturday elected pro-Iran candidates as speaker and first deputy speaker, opening the way to the formation of a new government more than four months after legislative polls.

Alarmed by the possibility of a bad or “no-deal” Brexit, London Mayor Sadiq Khan has called for a second referendum on the contentious subject of the U.K.’s departure from the European Union.

A Turkish court has sentenced a former British soldier to seven-and-a-half years in jail for alleged links to a Kurdish militia that Ankara considers a “terrorist” group.

Ethiopia and Eritrea signed an agreement Sunday at a summit in Saudi Arabia, bolstering a historic peace accord between the two former Horn of Africa enemies, officials said.

At least 23 people were killed in a weekend of violence targeting minorities in the ethnic Oromo heartland near Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa, police said, a blow to new reformist Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s efforts at reconciliation.

Nigeria was on Monday urged to ensure that trials of Boko Haram suspects meet international standards, amid concern about due process and prolonged periods of detention.

They dug trenches around towns, reinforced caves for cover and put up sand bags around their positions. They issued calls to arms, urging young men to join in the defense of Idlib, the Syrian province where opposition fighters expect to make their last stand against Russian- and Iranian-backed government troops they have fought for years. This time, it’s “surrender or die.”

U.S. sanctions on Iran’s oil industry are unproductive and there will be consequences to such a move, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak told CNBC. “Our position remains that this is unproductive, this is wrong,” Novak said when asked about the possible impact U.S. sanctions on Iran’s oil industry could have.


Australia has ordered an investigation into the discovery of sewing needles hidden in strawberries, amid growing alarm over scares across the country.

More than 100 people have died in floods after Nigeria’s two major rivers burst their banks.

Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel has backed same-sex marriage. The Cuban leader, who took over from Raúl Castro on 19 April, said he was in favor of recognizing “marriage between people without any restrictions”.


An observatory in the mountains of southern New Mexico that is dedicated to unlocking the mysteries of the sun has found itself at the center of a mystery that is creating a buzz here on earth. Authorities remain tightlipped Friday, saying only that an undisclosed security concern was behind the decision to abruptly vacate and lock up the remote facility on Sept 6. The Sunspot Solar Observatory has been closed for more than a week.

Fossilized plastic preserved in rocks will remain as a stark reminder of our polluting age for millions of years to come, an expert says. Like the bones of long dead dinosaurs, plastic in the geological record could become the defining hallmark of our era.

Hillary Clinton could soon disappear from the history curriculum in Texas. The Texas state board of education voted Friday to remove the former Democratic presidential nominee and secretary of state from the history curriculum, the Dallas Morning News reported.

News – 9/17/2018

USA.Life Is the Answer to Facebook Censoring Christians, Conservatives and Liberty
USA.Life is America’s new social network. 1776Free is the nation’s new search engine. USA.Life and 1776Free are the answer to Facebook, Google and Twitter censoring Christians, conservatives, patriotic speech….

Christian Transhumanism: ‘Ye shall be as gods’
Meet the Christian Transhumanist Association, whose members say they are “called by Christ to participate in that mission.” “We believe that God’s mission involves the transformation and renewal of creation including humanity. …” the group states in its first of five affirmations.

Azov Sea Flashpoint: Russia, Ukraine Teetering On The Brink Of War
Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council met on Sept. 7 and agreed to take a variety of steps to boost the country’s combat capabilities in the area, including the creation of a missile-equipped naval infantry group to counter potential amphibious attacks and naval shore bombardments. Ukraine’s Gurza-M-class armored artillery boats have been brought in to boost the naval component of the forces deployed in the region.

Obama, Clinton Counsel Facing Federal Corruption Charges
Attorney who served as White House counsel for Obama, Clinton faces criminal charges. Attorney Greg Craig is facing federal charges for lobbying Ukrainian leaders without registering as a foreign agent, according to a report by CNN, citing sources “familiar with the matter.”

Second Temple-Era Seal Archive Discovered at Beit Guvrin-Maresha National Park
Approximately 1,020 clay seals (bullae) dating back to the Hellenistic period – which coincides with the time the Second Temple stood in Jerusalem – and which may have belonged to the letter archive of a wealthy landowner, were found in August at the Beit Guvrin-Maresha National Park in central Israel, the Israel Nature and Parks Authority recently announced. The bullae were attached with cord to thousands of papyrus documents that did not survive the 2000 years in the cave, and were impressed with a unique sign to provide tamper-proofing.

Leading U.S. Exorcist: Catholic Church Sex Abuse Scandal Is Demonic, Likely to Get Worse
In a recent interview, a world-renowned exorcist said the sex abuse scandal currently rocking the Catholic Church is demonic in nature and likely to get worse before it gets better. “We are in for a long storm,” said Father Gary Thomas, the exorcist for the Diocese of San Jose, California.

Putin meets Erdogan at Sochi to cut a separate deal for Idlib
President Vladimir Putin will insist on an early date for the Idlib offensive when he meets Turkey’s Tayyip Erdogan at Sochi on Monday, Sept. 17. Erdogan will use the clout he gained from helping Washington force Putin to delay the offensive as clout to further his own interests.

‘It is our obligation to get up and charge’
The head of the Efrat municipality, Oded Revivi, announced this morning, Monday, on his Facebook page an ascent to nearby Givat Eitam following the murder of Ari Fuld, a resident of Efrat, yesterday at the Gush Etzion Junction, in order to settle it.

Netanyahu: Israel will never again fail to preempt attacks
On the eve of the 45th anniversary of the Yom Kippur War, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet Sunday that Israel will never repeat the mistake it made in 1973 by not preempting an enemy attack.

Woodward: No Evidence Of Trump-Russia Collusion Found
Bob Woodward, the … Watergate reporter whose word is gospel for liberals, drew one important conclusion after investigating the Trump Administration for two years to write his latest book, Fear: Trump In The White House. He found no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia to rig the election.

Worst flooding yet to come for waterlogged Carolinas
Deadly storm Florence moved across western North Carolina early on Monday and continued to dump rain that has nowhere to go except to swell rivers, flood highways and homes, and threaten more lives as it heads towards Virginia and New England.

Largest Country In The World Is Destroying 1000s Of Crosses And Bibles
Many Christians in the western world don’t even realize that the persecution of the end times has already started. All over the world, Christians are being attacked, Bibles are being burned and churches are being shut down. This persecution has been escalating for quite some time, but what prompted me to write this article today was the dramatic change that we have witnessed in China this year. Up to this point, the Chinese government has largely tolerated the booming house church movement, but now that era of toleration is officially over. New religious regulations that went into effect in February are being brutally enforced, and this is causing some to point out the frightening parallels between Communist China and Nazi Germany.

U.S. cuts $10 million from Israeli-Palestinian peace programs
The United States has cut $10 million of foreign aid money that was supporting coexistence programs between Israelis and Palestinians. It is believed to have been the last remaining US aid for Palestinian civilians. In recent weeks, the Trump administration has frozen $25 million in funding to Palestinian hospitals…all funding to the UNRWA…and cut more than $200 million for humanitarian and development aid in the West Bank and Gaza.

U.S.-backed Syrian forces launch offensive on last ISIS bastion
A major offensive launched by U.S.-backed Syrian forces in the country’s east will likely lead to the downfall of Islamic State’s last major stronghold…Backed by the U.S. coalition, the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) launched an assault on the last remaining pockets of Islamic State (ISIS) territory in the villages near the city of Deir ez-Zor and the eastern bank of the Euphrates River…

Nigeria floods kill more than 100
More than 100 people have died in floods after Nigeria’s two major rivers burst their banks, authorities say. The National Emergency Management Agency (Nema) says heavy rains caused the Niger River and Benue River to overflow. It has resulted in a series of floods across the country over two weeks, with rural areas most vulnerable.

Typhoon Mangkhut: Miners and families buried by landslide
Rescuers in the Philippines are digging through mud to retrieve bodies buried by a landslide that hit as Typhoon Mangkhut battered the country. At least 32 people in the mining town of Itogon, in Benguet province, were crushed in a single shelter. Teams are digging through the rubble with their bare hands, passing blocks of concrete and pieces of wood down a 50ft line to clear the area.

Storm Florence: Heavy flooding cuts off Wilmington
The coastal city of Wilmington, North Carolina, has been cut off from the rest of the state because of heavy floods following Hurricane Florence. Officials say all roads in and out are now impassable and have warned evacuated residents to stay away. About 400 people have been rescued from flood waters in the city, described as an island within the state.

Japan conducts first submarine drill in disputed South China Sea: Media
Japan has carried out its first submarine drill in the South China Sea, a newspaper said Monday (Sep 17), a move that could provoke Beijing which claims most of the disputed waters. Submarine Kuroshio on Thursday joined three Japanese warships in waters just southwest of the China-controlled Scarborough Shoal, the Asahi Shimbun said.

Push to Execute Saudi Clerics Rattles Kingdom’s Power Structure
Saudi authorities are seeking the death penalty for three prominent clerics, rights activists and a government official said, testing the unwritten code that has kept the kingdom’s rulers in power. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and his father, King Salman, have jailed activists, businessmen and government officials as part of their efforts to reshape Saudi society and economics.

U.S. Defense Secretary warns of Russian meddling in Macedonia referendum
U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis accused Russia on Monday of attempting to influence the outcome of a referendum in Macedonia on changing the country’s name that would open the way for it to join NATO and the European Union. Speaking after talks in Skopje with Macedonia’s leaders, Mattis also said the United States was looking to expand cybersecurity cooperation with the small Balkan country.

U.S. State Department revokes PLO ambassador family visas: envoy
The United States revoked visas for the family of the Palestine Liberation Organization ambassador… Ambassador Husam Zomlot, head of the PLO General Delegation to the United States, said his family, including his two young children, left the United States after being informed their visas would now expire when the diplomatic office is closed next month.

Pagan arch returning to Washington as ‘symbol of peace’
A reconstructed Arch of Palmyra, the original of which was the entrance to a temple for Baal in Syria, will reappear in Washington, D.C., as an “improbable” “symbol of peace and resilience,” according to Breaking Israel News.

**LIVE UPDATES** Deadly Florence Pummels Carolinas as Catastrophic Flooding Feared
Tropical Depression Florence on Sunday continues to batter the Carolinas as authorities fear catastrophic flash flooding will wreak mass destruction across the region. The storm is still swirling at a near-standstill, dumping torrential rain over areas already flooded by seawater and swelling rivers across both states.

Rick Perry on Cabinet Bible Study and President Trump’s Leadership: ‘It Starts at the Top’
Did you know members of President Donald Trump’s Cabinet meet weekly for a Bible study? CBN News was the first to report on it and according to one regular attendee, Secretary of Energy Rick Perry, the group is still going strong.

Six Flags holds ‘Great Muslim Adventure Day’…Just Days After 9/11 Anniversary
Of all the weeks in the year, they choose the week of September 11. Coincidence?

Three Square Market plans GPS chip for dementia patients
A Wisconsin-based technology company famous for microchipping willing employees plans to debut a microchip with GPS technology and voice recognition that will be powered by body heat, Three Square Market CEO Todd Westby announced on CNBC’s “Closing Bell” on Wednesday.

Senator Cory Booker and “The Only Good Zionist is a Dead Zionist”
Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing was the beginning of the Democrat 2020 primaries, and the winner was the Senate Democrat who yelled the worst possible thing. That was Senator Cory Booker.

Francis’ Emergency Meeting Ignores Vigano’s Indictment against Him and 32 Church Officials
On Thursday a delegation of U.S. bishops met with Pope Francis at the Vatican to discuss the ensuing sexual-abuse crisis in America, and while the USCCB issued a statement saying that the bishop’s meeting with Francis “was a lengthy, fruitful, and good exchange,” the matter of Cardinal Vigano’s 11-page testimony detailing cover-up allegations against Francis and 32 other high-ranking church officials—the very crux of the issue—was never addressed, nor has the Vatican fulfilled its promise to offer “clarifications” on Vigano’s indictment.

Red Alert Issued as Super Typhoon Mangkhut Hits China
China has issued its highest state of alert as heavy rains and strong winds from Super Typhoon Mangkhut begin battering the southern coast.

Crime Wave UK: Govt Moves to Stop Knife Sales as Blade Crime Hits 7-Year High
Small businesses have warned against “knee-jerk” legislation as the latest government figures reveal knife crime at its highest level since 2010.

REVEALED: Three Democrats Attended Private Dinner With Iran’s President And Louis Farrakhan
Three Democratic congressmen attended a private dinner hosted by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in 2013, a new report reveals. Reps. Keith Ellison of Minnesota, Andre Carson of Indiana and Gregory Meeks of New York attended the private dinner, along with Louis Farrakhan, a notorious anti-Semite who leads the black supremacist group Nation of Islam.

Trump Admin To Text All Americans On Thursday Via Emergency System; Trump-Haters Lose Their Minds
Graphic language ‘cuz, you know, liberals. The Trump administration will test out the national alert system, set up by former President Barack Obama, on Thursday by sending a message to all U.S. mobile phones.

Fearsome new stage begins as Florence floods inland rivers
As the death toll from Florence mounted and hundreds of people were pulled from flooded homes, North Carolina is bracing for what could be the next stage of a still-unfolding disaster: widespread, catastrophic river flooding.

Evidence of the Resurrection Accepted Even by Atheist New Testament Scholars
This blog post is based on the Minimal Facts argument for the Resurrection of Jesus by Dr. Gary Habermas, and it one of the strongest arguments that I have seen for the resurrection.

Apostasy Watch Headlines – 9/17/2018

Christian Zionists May Soon Have a New Dilemma

Josh Buice – Social Justice is an Attack on the Sufficiency of Scripture

Christopher Yuan – Is Anyone Born Gay?

Charisma Magazine reports on why Bill Johnson didn’t immediately shut down ‘grave sucking’.

FBI Wants Victims to Come Forward After Disney Imposter Scams Church Out of $340K

Texas Megachurch Owes Former Pastor and Wife $3.7M in Retirement Benefits, Jury Says

Ex-Cult Member Will Testify Against Woman She Said Asked Her to Kidnap Mexican Child

China forbids Children in Churches as Religious Rights Diminish

News Headlines – 9/17/2018

Trump revokes visas for Palestinian envoy and his family

Trump freezes PA’s bank accounts

US reallocating West Bank-Israel coexistence funds to Arab-Jewish programs

Trump officials reportedly angry at US Jews for not cheering embassy move

300 Palestinians riot along Gaza fence for second night

Israeli-American Man, 40, Killed in Stabbing Attack at West Bank Mall

Thousands mourn at funeral as ‘hero’ Ari Fuld buried after terror attack

PM consoles terror victim’s family: ‘We are alive thanks to heroes like Ari’

Official PA news agency says Israeli forces shot Arab youth, in response to ‘alleged stabbing,’ fail to mention terrorist killed an Israeli

After deadly stabbing, Liberman vows to fight terror with ‘iron fist’

Palestinian groups applaud Gush Etzion attack

‘Angry’ Abbas condemns violence after deadly terror attack

Abbas: Palestinians committed to non-violence

Belgium ends funding for Palestinian schools over honoring of terrorist

Balloon believed rigged with explosives lands in central West Bank settlement

Netanyahu to miss U.N. meetings over Sukkot schedule clash

On the eve of the 45th anniversary of the Yom Kippur War Netanyahu states “Israel will never again fail to preempt attacks”

After Damascus raid, Israel says working to keep weapons from foes

Iran says Twitter shut legitimate accounts, but not anti-government ones

Push to Execute Saudi Clerics Rattles Kingdom’s Power Structure

Moon seeks to break nuclear deadlock at Pyongyang summit

Skepticism rising in S. Korea ahead of 3rd summit with North

6.5 magnitude earthquake hits South of the Fiji Islands

5.3 magnitude earthquake hits near Ndoi Island, Fiji

5.3 magnitude earthquake hits near Luganville, Vanuatu

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Port-Olry, Vanuatu

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Nago, Japan

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits South of Tonga

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Makry Gialos, Greece

Popocateptl volcano in Mexico erupts to 23,000ft

Sangay volcano in Ecuador erupts to 23,000ft

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 23,000ft

Ruiz volcano in Colombia erupts to 22,000ft

Reventador volcano in Ecuador erupts to 19,000ft

Ebeko volcano in the Kuril Islands erupts to 17,000ft

Kluchevskoy volcano on Kamchatka, Russia erupts to 17,000ft

Fuego volcano in Guatemala erupts to 15,000ft

Turrialba volcano in Costa Rica erupts to 15,000ft

It’s official: Typhoon Mangkhut was the most intense storm since records began

Philippines: Typhoon Mangkhut death toll jumps as landslide traps dozens

Massive clean-up in Hong Kong after typhoon brings trail of destruction

Wilmington Cut Off by Florence as Catastrophic Flooding Spreads Across North Carolina

Florence forecast: Record-setting, flooding rain is ‘far from done’

Swansboro, North Carolina, got 34 inches of rain – and it’s still coming down

North Carolina dam in danger of breaching, evacuations ordered

Allegations throw Kavanaugh confirmation into turmoil

Kavanaugh confirmation process has been ‘an intergalactic freak show,’ Sen. Kennedy says

Professor details sexual assault allegation against US Supreme Court pick

Dems call on Senate to postpone Kavanaugh vote

Dalai Lama: I knew of sex abuse by Buddhist teachers since 1990s

Mormon says he was excommunicated for accusing church leaders of inappropriate sexual questions

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