Daily Archives: November 2, 2018

NOVEMBER 2 REJOICE—OR GRUMBLE

Ye greatly rejoice, though…ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations.

1 Peter 1:6

I think all of us meet Christian men and women who always seem to look on the gloomy side and are never able to do anything with life’s problems but grumble about them! I meet them often and when I do, I wonder: “Can these people be reading and trusting the same Bible I have been reading?”

The Apostle Peter wrote to the tempted, suffering and persecuted believers in his day and noted with thanksgiving that they could rejoice because they counted God’s promises and provisions greater than their trials!

We do live in a sinful and imperfect world, and as believers in Christ we acknowledge that perfection is a relative thing now—and God has not really completed a thing with us, as yet!

Peter testified that the persecuted and suffering Christians of his day were looking, in faith, to a future state of things immeasurably better than that which they knew, and that state of things would be perfect and complete!

Lord, I pray that today, regardless of the difficulties I may face, I will be in a perpetual state of rejoicing because of Your promise of a hope and a future (see Jeremiah 29:11).[1]


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

NOVEMBER 2 IN HIS HOLY TEMPLE

Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.

—1 Corinthians 10:31

On Monday, as we go about our different duties and tasks, are we aware of the Presence of God? The Lord desires still to be in His holy temple, wherever we are. He wants the continuing love and delight and worship of His children, wherever we work.

Is it not a beautiful thing for a businessman to enter his office on Monday morning with an inner call to worship: “The Lord is in my office—let all the world be silent before Him”?

If you cannot worship the Lord in the midst of your responsibilities on Monday, it is not very likely that you were worshiping on Sunday! …

I guess many people have an idea that they have God in a box. He is just in the church sanctuary, and when we leave and drive toward home, we have a rather faint, homesick feeling that we are leaving God in the big box.

You know that is not true, but what are you doing about it? WHT122

Lord, may I today—whatever day it happens to be—go about my tasks with an overlying sense of worship, that You would be glorified in everything I do, say or think today. Amen. [1]


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

Ben and Jerry’s To Donate Proceeds From New ‘Resist’ Flavour To Anti-Israel Hate Groups Linked To Louis Farrakhan — Now The End Begins

 

Ben & Jerry’s controversial decision to release a new anti-Trump flavor in collaboration with, among others, Women’s March leader Linda Sarsour, has prompted the company’s Israel franchise, which is owned independently, to distance itself from the ice cream giant.

Some of the the most anti-Israel people you will ever meet are self-loathing American Jews who despise the sovereign nation of Israel, and would love to see it driven into the sea and replaced by the mythical Palestinian people. Such is the case with childhood friends Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield, founders of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream, and inventors of the pro-Palestinian ice cream flavour they have entitled ‘Resist‘.

“Let them all be confounded and turned back that hate Zion.” Psalm 129:5 (KJV)

Ben and Jerry posed proudly with rabid anti-Israel hate monger Linda Sarsour as they pledged to turn the profits over to hate groups she supports and is associated with. Sarsour’s ‘associates’ include Jew haters like Tamika Mallory, who herself is an ardent supporter of Louis Farrakhan. Farrakhan, you might recall, recently posted a speech still up on Twitter where he referred to all Jews as subhuman ‘termites‘.

So you see, just because you are biologically Jewish does not mean that you cannot be anti-semitic and anti-Israel, because obviously, Ben and Jerry are both.

Ben & Jerry’s Israel Distances Itself From Anti-Trump Ice Cream Flavor

FROM BREITBART NEWS: The limited edition flavor, entitled Pecan Resist, “supports groups creating a more just and equitable nation for us all, and who are fighting President Trump’s regressive agenda,” the American company said in a statement Tuesday.

Proceeds from the new flavor will go to four groups, including Women’s March, whose leaders are rabidly anti-Israel. Linda Sarsour, who was pictured in a tweet with the company’s eponymous founders, has in the past accused Israel of “apartheid” and shared a stage with Palestinian terrorist Rasmea Odeh. Another Women’s March leader, Tamika Mallory, recently accused Israel of committing a “human rights crime” when the state was established by “killing, stealing” and “taking the lives of people who were there first.” Mallory is an ardent supporter of virulently antisemitic Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.

Don’t know Linda Sarsour? Take a look!

Watch these two videos so you can see who Ben and Jerry’s is ‘proud to support’ with the profits of their new ‘Resist’ ice cream flavour. Watch as she calls for jihad against the American government, thanks Ben and Jerry!

On Wednesday, Ben & Jerry’s Israel arm distanced itself from the move

“Ben & Jerry’s Israel is an independent and Israeli company,” it wrote on Facebook, noting that all of its products and ingredients are manufactured and sourced locally.

“We have no connection to the decisions made by the global brand, and we don’t get involved in local or world politics.”

The company said that it would not be selling “Pecan Resist” and will “continue to work and act for the community and for Israeli society.” SOURCE

via Ben and Jerry’s To Donate Proceeds From New ‘Resist’ Flavour To Anti-Israel Hate Groups Linked To Louis Farrakhan — Now The End Begins

Benjamin Franklin “You Have A Republic, IF You Can Keep It” His Fears Are Being Realized Today

Absolute Truth from the Word of God

Today I asked my Facebook friends to answer a simple question.  I asked them what type of government we have in the United States.  Most of my friends are Christians and Conservatives; and those who answered were well informed and correct. 

When the Constitution was written, our Founding Fathers deemed that the best government (Under God) would be a Constitutional Republic. I stipulated “Under God” for a very good reason. God was an integral part of the writing of our Constitution – and apart from Him, the Republic would not stand.

Our Constitution was written for a moral people.  If you ask any liberal what form of government we have in the U.S. – invariably they will answer with “Democracy.”  And they are dead wrong.  That answer is what the Leftists want to replace our Republic with.

You see, America is a Nation of laws.  Some call it a Democratic…

View original post 1,757 more words

Pre-Caravan Border Stats Are Staggering: 17,000 Criminals, 100 Countries, 1,900 Caught Each Day

Illegal crossings at the US southern border have spiked recently, with border patrol agents picking up nearly 2,000 people a day trying to enter from Mexico.

Source: Pre-Caravan Border Stats Are Staggering: 17,000 Criminals, 100 Countries, 1,900 Caught Each Day

Bill Clinton Turns Radioactive as Dem Candidates Stop Asking Him to Campaign For Them — The Gateway Pundit

Bill Clinton with intern Monica Lewinsky

How the mighty fall.

Bill Clinton has gone radioactive as Democrat candidates have stopped asking him to campaign for them.

The Democrats are keeping their distance from the Clintons as they scramble to redefine themselves in Trump’s America and adjust to the #MeToo era.

Clinton, the once popular “closer” on the campaign trail is seeing a big chill from fellow Democrats.

The former President’s abuse of power and extracurricular activities in the Oval Office have drawn sharp rebuke from Democrats in certain circles and the once Clinton-friendly media.

The New York Times hit Bill Clinton in a scathing headline Friday, “No One Wants to Campaign With Bill Clinton Anymore”

As Democrats search for their identity in the Trump era, one aspect has become strikingly clear: Mr. Clinton is not part of it. Just days before the midterm elections, Mr. Clinton finds himself in a kind of political purgatory, unable to overcome past personal and policy choices now considered anathema within the rising liberal wing of his party.

The former president, once such a popular political draw that he was nicknamed his party’s “explainer-in-chief,” has only appeared at a handful of private fund-raisers to benefit midterm candidates, according to people close to him.

The Women’s March even rejected Slick Willie:

“I’m not sure that with all the issues he has, he could really be that helpful to the candidates,” said Tamika D. Mallory, an organizer of the Women’s March, who’s now promoting female candidates across the country. “It would do the Democratic Party well to have Bill Clinton focus on his humanitarian efforts.”

Veteran Democrat strategist Rebecca Kirszner Katz blasted Bill Clinton:

“It was an abuse of power that shouldn’t have happened and if the Clintons can’t accept that fact 20 years later, it’s hard to see how they can be part of the future of the Democratic Party,”

Clinton’s wife and twice-failed presidential hopeful Hillary has also been branded the kiss of death by many after her toxic 2016 White House bid.

Hillary Clinton also bullied her husband Bill’s sex abuse victims and is still dogged by her private email scandal–both losing arguments for the left.

Of course the Clintons are working behind the scenes helping with fundraising, but it is very telling that Democrat candidates don’t want to be seen with them, especially Bill Clinton, in public.

via Bill Clinton Turns Radioactive as Dem Candidates Stop Asking Him to Campaign For Them — The Gateway Pundit

This ‘n’ That — Do Not Be Surprised…

  • True confession: I’ve never read Ann of Green Gables.
  • I actually think William Farel might be my favorite Reformer.
  • Some good points in here: “if we accept bad theology on the basics, our ethics are going to follow suit.”
  • So, where do we find truth?
  • Here’s the latest on last week’s slaying in a Pittsburgh synagogue. That situation is so terribly heartbreaking.
  • How Martin Luther came to be born again.
  • So, caller ID spoofing is a thing. I’ve been a victim on both sides, namely, I’ve been called by a spoofed number in an attempted scam, and I’ve had my number spoofed. Neither one is cool.
  • You should know about Emily Thomes.
  • On the death of Ulrich Zwingli.
He is a shepherd-king. He has supremacy, but it is the superiority of a wise and tender shepherd over his needy and loving flock; he commands and receives obedience, but it is the willing obedience of the well-cared-for sheep, rendered joyfully to their beloved Shepherd, whose voice they know so well. He rules by the force of love and the energy of goodness. His power lies not in imperious threatenings, but in imperial lovingkindness. —Charles Spurgeon

via This ‘n’ That — Do Not Be Surprised…

11/02/2018 — Wretched

WR2018-1102

•Don Lemon embraces the racial double standard
•Ben and Jerry serve up woke ice cream
•Was Todd unfair to Lauren Daigle?
•Your pastor may be struggling with loneliness and inadequacy
•Furtick’s church calls him a GOAT
•Adoption requires full disclosure
•Clarifying Andy Stanley’s denominational affiliation
•Porn and Romance movies
•The rise in post-partum suicide
•Should I tell a swine I won’t toss pearls to them?
•Speaker tours and Conference prices

Download Now (right click and save)

via 11/02/2018 — Wretched

November 2 Daily Help

“HEAL my soul, for I have sinned against thee.” For this also the godly praise the name of the Lord, saying, “He healeth all our diseases.” What a transcendent comfort it is that in the person of Jesus “dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily!” My soul, whatever thy disease may be, this great Physician can heal thee. If He be God, there can be no limit to his power. Come just as thou art, for he who is God can certainly restore thee of thy plague. None shall restrain the healing virtue which proceeds from Jesus our Lord. All his patients have been cured in the past, and shall be in the future, and thou shalt be one among them, my friend, if thou wilt but rest thyself in him.[1]


[1] Spurgeon, C. H. (1892). Daily Help (p. 310). Baltimore: R. H. Woodward & Company.

DHS: 270 convicted criminals, 20 nationalities in caravan

(Video screenshot)

Seeking to dispel “myths” about the caravans headed to the United States’ southern border, the Department of Homeland Security claimed Thursday they are comprised of people from at least 20 countries, and more than 270 are either known gang members or have criminal backgrounds.

In a release titled “Myth vs. Fact: Caravan,” DHS, without citing sources, said the charges against the violent criminals in the caravans include “aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, armed robbery, sexual assault on a child, and assault on a female,” the Washington Examiner reported.

Meanwhile, the first 100 troops have arrived at the U.S.-Mexico border. Another 7,000 military personnel will arrive through the weekend ahead of the caravan’s arrival. President Trump has said he could send as many as 15,000 troops.

At the White House on Thursday, Trump was asked if the military personnel might open fire on the caravan.

“I hope not. I hope not. It’s the military. I hope there won’t be that,” he said.

“But I will tell you this: Anybody throwing stones, rocks, like they did to Mexico and the Mexican military, Mexican police – where they badly hurt police and soldiers of Mexico – we will consider that a firearm.”

The initial caravan, now with an estimated 4,000 people about 900 miles from the U.S. border, will depart from Matias Romero, Mexico, early Friday. It could arrive sometime between Nov. 3 and 12, depending on whether or not the members walk or drive.

Two more caravans, with another 1,500 people, are behind it.

A DHS spokesman told the Washington Examiner the 270 criminals had previously been convicted, not just charged.

“We also continue to see individuals from over 20 countries in this flow from countries such as Somalia, India, Haiti, Afghanistan and Bangladesh,” DHS said. “There is a large segment of this population that we know nothing about and we must be prepared to defend our border and enforce our laws to protect the citizens of our country.”

The DHS report supports Trump’s claim last week that “unknown Middle Easterners” were in the caravan.

Mexican officials have confirmed that known criminals are among the migrants.

Mexican Interior Minister Navarrete Prida said Tuesday in a radio interview that he has videos from Guatemala “that show men dressed in identical clothing, sporting the same haircuts, handing out money to women to persuade them to move to the front of the caravan.”

“We know, for a fact, that some members of the caravan threatened [Mexican] Migration Institute personnel and we have images showing many of them preparing Molotov cocktails,” he said.

Trump: Asylum not about poverty

DHS has emphasized that there is a legal process for seeking asylum in the United States by applying at a port of entry.

Trump has warned that any migrants who try to enter the U.S. illegally between ports of entry will be automatically returned.

An asylum seeker must prove that he or she has a well-founded fear of persecution based on race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group or political opinion.

Trump said asylum is “about safety” rather than “a program for those that are living in poverty.”

In a change of policy, he said, asylum seekers will remain in custody until their hearing date.

“We’re not releasing anymore – we’re going to no longer release, we’re going to catch, we’re not going to release. They’re going to stay with us until the deportation hearing or the asylum hearing takes place,” he said.

Source: DHS: 270 convicted criminals, 20 nationalities in caravan

What the Tree of Life Synagogue Massacre Means — Christian Research Network

“For Jews to blame the most pro-Israel president since Harry Truman — the only president with a Jewish child and Jewish grandchildren, moreover — for increasing anti-Semitism is another example of a truism this Jew has known all his life: Unlike Jewish liberals, who get most of their values from Judaism, Jewish leftists are ethnically Jewish but get their values from leftism.”

(Dennis Prager – National Review)  ll my life I have reminded fellow Jews in America that we are the luckiest Jews to have ever lived in a non-Jewish country. I know what I’m talking about. I wrote a book on anti-Semitism, taught Jewish history at Brooklyn College, and fought anti-Semitism since I was 21, when Israel sent me into the Soviet Union to smuggle in Jewish religious items and smuggle out Jewish names.

Even after the massacre of eleven Jews in a Pittsburgh synagogue, this assessment remains true.

But the greatest massacre of Jews in American history is a unique American tragedy.

It is a tragedy in part because America has finally made the list of countries in which Jews were murdered for being Jews. While this was probably inevitable, given that 330 million people live in America, it is painful — equally for me as an American and as a Jew.

And second, while there is no difference between the murder of Christians at a church and the murder of Jews in a synagogue with regard to the loss of life and the suffering of loved ones, there is something unique about the murder of Jews for being Jews: Anti-Semitism is exterminationist. Anti-Semites don’t just want to persecute, enslave, or expel Jews; they want to kill them all. View article →

via What the Tree of Life Synagogue Massacre Means — Christian Research Network

What Parts of the Law Are Still Relevant to Us Today? — Ligonier Ministries Blog

Which parts of the Old Testament law are still relevant to Christians today? From our 2015 National Conference, R.C. Sproul explains the difference between the ceremonial law, the civil law, and the moral law.

Do you have another biblical or theological question? Ask Ligonier is your place for answers. Just visit Ask.Ligonier.org.

via What Parts of the Law Are Still Relevant to Us Today? — Ligonier Ministries Blog

33 Reasons Why We Need Apologetics

I’ve written a bunch about what Apologetics is – a rational defense of the Christian faith – and what it all involves. But the “What” of Apologetics doesn’t matter if there are no reasons why we should use Apologetics or even have it on our minds. To show its importance on our daily lives as Christians, I created a list of 33 reasons explaining why we need Apologetics.

I placed the reasons into categories for easy reading, and sorted the categories into alphabetical order.

CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY

1. It prompts deeper discussion between Christians. It’s simple – Apologetics topics drive deep discussion. This discussion starts to change the shallow habits of some Christian circles.

2. It eases tension between Christians with different views. When you understand the array of views Christians can reasonably hold, you become more open to accepting a Christian who holds a different view on a specific topic.

3. It unifies people from various Christian denominations. The defense of God’s existence and the evidence behind Jesus’ life crosses all Christian denominations – no Christian is excluded from the Apologetics enterprise.

4. It provides opportunities to encourage other Christians. A community of Christians can come together and ask tough questions, talk through them, and encourage each other to use what they’ve learned in daily life. This kind of encouragement happens all the time in podcasts like Stand to Reason.

EVANGELISM

5. We can use it to break down intellectual barriers to the gospel. Many people won’t instantly accept Jesus into their life after hearing the gospel. They may have questions or objections that hold them back from doing so. Apologetics starts the process of tearing down these intellectual barriers.

6. We can use it to better connect with people that have passions different than ours. For example, by diving into Apologetics topics related to science, you can have a deep conversation with a scientist (say, about the origin of the Universe) even when science isn’t your top passion.

7. It helps us to better understand another person’s perspective. When someone stars explaining a viewpoint we’ve already heard through Apologetics study, we can better understand how the person arrived to that viewpoint.

8. It gives us greater empathy towards people with other views. When we wrestle through Apologetics topics and understand the difficulty of that process, it helps us identify emotionally with people who have wrestled through the same topics and came to different conclusions.

9. When we use it, we carry on the work of Christian thinkers living throughout the centuries. There is a long list of Christians defending the truth of God through the ages – St. Augustine, Blaise Pascal, and C.S. Lewis instantly come to mind.

10. We can use it to reach people who are naturally skeptical. Sometimes, Apologetics-based discussion is the only kind of spiritual discussion a skeptic will be open to.

11. It prepares us for questions about faith people may ask. Many Christians shy away from evangelism because they’re afraid of the questions that might be asked. Apologetics eases this anxiety by increasing our confidence in answering the questions others have.

FAITH

12. It gives us a well-rounded understanding of our faith. Apologetics doesn’t just hyper-focus on specific issues like the trinity, divine providence, or the applicability of Old Testament laws. Through Apologetics, we can explore and understand a wide range of elements of our faith.

13. It helps us wrestle through intellectual doubts. Doubts aren’t a bad thing to go through, but unanswered intellectual doubts can debilitate our faith over time. Apologetics provides the resources needed to wrestle through our intellectual doubts.

14. It grounds the faith of young people and new believers. This grounding is hugely important as young people enter a skeptical academic environment and new believers encounter new challenges.

15. It provides a foundation of truth to hold onto during difficult times in life. When difficult circumstances carry the potential to turn us away from God, we can instead turn to Apologetics and cling to the truth about God.

16. It keeps our guard up. When we consistently immerse ourselves into Apologetics content, we prepare ourselves for sudden and unexpected intellectual challenges that come our way – challenges which could easily put us into a “crisis of faith”.

PRACTICAL

17. It exercises our mind. Reading books exercises our mind and thinking ability the most, and book reading is plentiful in Apologetics study.

18. It connects some of the main areas of thinking together. Philosophy, science, history, and theology become an interwoven venture rather than separated subjects.

19. It prompts us to be life-long learners. There is always more Apologetics content to learn, which leads us to yearn for a life of gaining knowledge and wisdom.

20. It informs our voting decisions. Studying ethical issues helps us decide where to stand on key election topics.

21. Sharing it builds up various skills. Sharing through blogs develops writing skill, sharing verbally shapes public speaking skill, and sharing through video builds production skill. My own graphic design skills have increased greatly from sharing Apologetics content on Instagram.

22. It causes us to check our biases. People tend to listen only to data which affirms their own beliefs – this is a well known phenomenon called confirmation bias. Apologetics prompts us to reflect on our biases and push against confirmation bias when we dig into views which oppose our beliefs.

23. It helps us to recognize the false ideas in our culture. Recognizing these false ideas is key to ensure we don’t start to follow those ideas and suffer from their damaging consequences.

24. It teaches us basic logic and formation of arguments. We can understand and assess arguments more effectively and identify logical fallacies in other people’s thinking.

SCRIPTURE

25. Scripture commands us to use it. Paul says in 1 Peter 3:15 – “Always be prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you.” Apologetics gets us prepared to make this defense.

26. It allows us to follow the example of Jesus. Jesus used Apologetics methods (such as asking questions) in conversations described in Mark 12:18-27 and Matthew 22:15-22.

27. It allows us to follow the example of the earliest Christians. They used Apologetics to affirm God’s existence by pointing to the events of Jesus resurrection – see especially Acts 2:29-33.

28. It shows us the importance of the events of Jesus’ life. What did Jesus’ sacrifice accomplish? Why does it matter that he rose from the dead? Apologetics provides answers to these key questions.

29. It coincides with reading scripture correctly. Apologetics helps us to read Bible passages in proper context, through understanding of the historical background behind the passage and through the idea that we can’t just read one Bible verse (we need to read the verses around it to gather the flow of thought).

SPIRITUAL DEVELOPMENT

30. It can deepen our relationship with God. When you’re in a relationship with someone, knowing more about that person can take that relationship deeper. The same goes with our relationship with God as we learn things about him through Apologetics!

31. It gives us a greater sense of awe towards God. When we can acknowledge true things about God and see his power more through Apologetics content (on topics like miracles), our sense of awe towards him increases.

32. It puts us in a position where we need to trust God. We don’t know results of using Apologetics in conversations with others. We also don’t know what path our investigation of truth will lead us down. We need to trust in God through these unknowns.

33. It brings us to a place of humility. The more we study Apologetics, the more we realize there is much we don’t know. At some point, humility is needed to accept we won’t have all the answers, which opens up opportunity for faith.

This list is not exhaustive – I’m probably missing some reasons in it. But the list is sufficient to show that Christians truly need Apologetics in their daily lives.

Source: 33 Reasons Why We Need Apologetics

Sin is at the heart of what is wrong in your life — Christian Research Network

This article by CRN managing editor Marsha West was first published October 8, 2013.

No one has any right to believe that he is indeed a Christian unless he is humbly seeking to obey the teachings of the One whom he calls Lord. Christ once asked a question that can have no satisfying answer, “Why do you call me, `Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?” –A. W. Tozer

Bill and Beth (not their real names) are professing Christians.  Bill gave Beth a “promise ring” so she decided that God would be okay with them living together as man and wife.  If the arrangement works out, they’ll marry.  If it doesn’t work out they’ll move on to the next relationship.

Beth’s mom is also a Christian.  Beth opened up to me that when her mom found out she had decided to live in sin her only concern was that she could become pregnant.  Both of Beth’s sisters have children out of wedlock and this understandably distresses Mom as she worries that her youngest may follow in her two older sisters’ footsteps.  To me what’s more troubling than the pregnancy issue is that this Christian mother isn’t all that concerned that by living together Beth and Bill are sinning against God!  In fact, she hasn’t even broached the subject with her daughter.

Except for Christmas and Easter, Beth and Bill haven’t attended church together.  According to Beth, Bill has a hang up about church that he prefers keeping to himself.  Since she doesn’t want to probe too deeply into her man’s past, she has decided that it’s best to let sleeping dogs lie (in bed on Sunday) and join her mother for the service.  What would happen, I queried, if Bill doesn’t get over his church hang up?  Beth replied sharply, “Well, he’d better!”

I also asked what her pastor would say if he knew that she was living with her boyfriend without the benefit of marriage.  She appeared surprised and said with conviction, “Nothing!”

Nothing?

I pressed on.  “A minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ has no problem with Christians living in sin?”  Her bemused expression spoke volumes:  “If he doesn’t like it, I’ll change churches,” she stated matter-of-factly.  In other words, Beth would shop around for a church with a more progressive thinker in the pulpit; a church that bends to her life-style choices, one that meets her needs.

Therein lies the problem.

By Beth’s way of thinking, the church she chooses will have to accept the sort of behavior that’s explicitly forbidden in Scripture or she’ll find one that does!

After listening to Beth attempt to justify her sinful lifestyle for several agonizing minutes, I passed on the Apostle Paul’s instructions concerning how the Church body should handle those who indulged in overt sin. Briefly stated, Paul made clear that couples involved in sex out of wedlock (heterosexual or homosexual) must be counseled by church leaders to abstain forthwith.  Moreover, they had to repent of their sin and separate.  Unrepentant sinners were prevailed upon by their church family to leave.  This is known as “church discipline.”  Paul’s instructions still apply today.  In other words, God has not changed his mind.

Well, Beth was shocked.  “That’s ridiculous!” she gasped.  “They can’t make me leave my church, can they?”

I assured her that church discipline is biblical and that this sort of confrontation and correction has been practiced all throughout Church history (2 Thes. 3:14-15; 1 Cor. 5:12-13; Mat.18:15-17) and that the purpose is to bring the person to godly sorrow and repentance.  I reminded her that some folks need a swift kick in the pants to get them to turn away from sin.  However, punishment is never the goal; the aim is a fully restored relationship with God and other believers.

Beth wasn’t buying it.  She retorted, “There are other couples living together and my pastor knows it.  They haven’t been disciplined!”

It seemed Beth had already found a liberal pastor that had chosen to ignore the biblical teaching on “fornication.”  I had taken up the “sword of the Spirit” (Ephesians 6:17) to defend my position so I decided it was best to leave it at that and simply pray for the Holy Spirit to illuminate Beth’s mind and convict her of sin.

Those of us who spend time reading the Bible are fully aware that from beginning to end sin is a major topic. When we read through the Old Testament we learn that our Creator was justifiably at odds with His people over their continual sin and their unrepentant hearts.   In our postmodern world, many of God’s people don’t realize that when we sin—no matter how big or how small it is—we are sinning against GodPsalm 51:4 makes this clear:

Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest.

In his essay A God-Centered Understanding of Sin, Stephen Witmer wrote:  “The Bible consistently presents sin as mainly a ‘vertical’ (person-to-God) offence.” …  “The seriousness of sin is a function of the worth and value of the one who is sinned against.” (emphasis mine)

Consequently, the Lord deals harshly with sinners.  Take for example David and Bathsheba.  Most Christians are familiar with this story and the result of their adultery, which is first and foremost a sin against God.  So His punishment was harsh:

The Lord struck the child that Uriah’s wife had borne to David, and he became ill.  David pleaded with God for the child.  He fasted and went into his house and spent the nights lying on the ground.  The elders of his household stood beside him to get him up from the ground, but he refused, and he would not eat any food with them.  On the seventh day the child died. (2 Samuel 12:15-18)

God’s judgment was that the child Bathsheba borne to David should die. Yes, David confessed his sin, he sincerely repented, and the Lord forgave him.  Still, there were grave consequences for what he did.  In the New Testament we have the story of Ananias and Sapphira.  (Acts 5:1)  In a nutshell, the couple lied to the Holy Spirit and to God’s people.  His punishment for their hypocrisy was swift — He struck them dead on the spot.  Yes, our Heavenly Father is merciful and long suffering.  However, He will only tolerate sin for so long.  Ananias and Sapphira paid with their lives!  Many believers fail to realize that an attribute of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is that He is “independently, infinitely, immutably holy.”  Revelation 15:4 says: 

Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest.  

Thus, a holy God cannot tolerate sin in His presence!  Psalm 29:2 reminds us:

Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.

For those who wish to understand why sin is so egregious, read the following scriptures:

All humans have sinned, Romans 3:23; 5:12

Devastating effects of sin, Romans 1:18-3:30

God will punish the world for its evil, Isaiah 13:11

Sin breaks our fellowship with God, Isaiah 59:1-2; 1 John 1:6-7

Sin causes death, Romans 6:23

Three areas of sin: lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes, pride of life, 1 John 2:16

When I first became a Christian, Isaiah 59:2 hit me like a ton of bricks:

But your iniquities have separated you from God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.

I was terrified to learn that sin separates us from God, that we can petition God until we’re blue in the face, but He may not be listening!  In other words, He hears our prayers but chooses not to act. At times He looks the other way.  To stand in God’s holy presence, our sins must be removed.  How is this accomplished?  By the blood of the Lamb that takes away (covers) our sins.  “And he [Jesus Christ] is the propitiation [turning away God’s wrath by an offering] for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world” (1 John 2:2).  (See also 2 Cor. 5:19Gal. 1:4)

With all the willful unrepentant sin going on in the Body of Christ, one can’t help but wonder if God has indeed hidden His face from a whole host of believers who don’t seem to realize that sin is our mortal enemy, therefore it shouldn’t be taken lightly.  So when we knowingly transgress we must sincerely repent.  Moreover, we must make every effort not to become repeat offenders.  “Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God” (1 John 3:9)

Today when a pastor dares to preach on sin (or hell) it gets under the skin of the folks who go to church for sheer entertainment value.  (Read my column on church entertainment here.)  For many church goers hearing the “s” word is downright offensive. In point of fact, sin isn’t in their vocabulary!  In an attempt to not offend their parishioners, sinner has been replaced with less offensive words such as wrongdoer.  And when wrongdoers misbehave they must be reassured that God will tolerate it.  These folks mustn’t be told that God severely punishes bad behavior.  Their image of God is the father who places his hands on his hips and says to his defiant child:  “That is not okay, Justin,” and simply walks away. No punishment.  No consequences.

Sadly, more and more Christians are choosing churches that offer contemporary praise and worship songs because, through music, they feel they can experience God on a much deeper level than simply reading and studying His Word.  These same people insist on hearing a message that’s positive and uplifting — not too preachy, thank you very much.  About all they can handle is a sermonette that tickles the ears and makes them feel warm and fuzzy all over.

In today’s pop culture it’s all about a person’s “felt needs.”   So if a minister’s message fails to meet those perceived needs, disgruntled consumers, like the aforementioned Beth, go looking for a church where sin is swept under the rug.  Pastor Brent Riggs reminds us that “Sin is the essence of everything bad, wrong, ruined, spoiled, messed up and broken in your life.  Therefore, you should be educated about it.”

Riggs has it right when he suggests Christians should be educated about sin.

Straightforward preaching from the pulpit on sin and hell is essential.  As John Wesley so aptly put it:

Give me nothing but one hundred preachers who fear nothing but sin, and desire nothing but God, and I care not a straw whether they be clergymen or laymen; such alone will shake the gates of hell and set up the kingdom of heaven on earth. 

Christians must become a people who fear God, not man.  “In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me” (Psalm 56:11).

Recommended:

When People Are Big And God Is Small—Edward T. Welch

Copyright by Marsha West, 2013. (Revised)

via Sin is at the heart of what is wrong in your life — Christian Research Network

November 2, 2018 Afternoon Verse Of The Day

The Friends of Jesus Love Each Other

This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. (15:12–13)

For the second time that evening in the upper room, Jesus gave the commandment that His followers are to love one another (cf. 13:34). Love is the fulfillment of the commandments Jesus had referred to in 15:10. Paul expressed that same principle to the Christians at Rome:

Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. For this, “You shall not commit adultery, you shall not murder, you shall not steal, you shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. (Rom. 13:8–10)

Only those who abide in Him have the capacity to love divinely as Jesus loved. At the new birth, the “love of God [was] poured out within [their] hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to [them]” (Rom. 5:5; cf. Gal. 5:22). What Paul wrote concerning the Thessalonians, “Now as to the love of the brethren, you have no need for anyone to write to you, for you yourselves are taught by God to love one another” (1 Thess. 4:9), is true of all Christians. Love for fellow believers characterizes the redeemed, as John repeatedly emphasized in his first epistle:

The one who says he is in the Light and yet hates his brother is in the darkness until now. The one who loves his brother abides in the Light and there is no cause for stumbling in him. But the one who hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going because the darkness has blinded his eyes. (2:9–11)

By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious: anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother. (3:10)

We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death. Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. (3:14–15)

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. (4:7–8)

If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. (4:20)

Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and whoever loves the Father loves the child born of Him. (5:1)

The daunting standard for believers’ love for each other is set forth in Jesus’ words just as I have loved you. They are to love each other as the Lord Jesus Christ loves them. That does not mean, of course, that believers can love to the limitless extent or in the perfect manner that He does. But just as Jesus loved sacrificially, so also must they. “Walk in love,” Paul wrote in Ephesians 5:2, “just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.” The love believers have for each other is marked by a selfless devotion to meeting one another’s needs; it is not mere sentiment, or superficial attachment. In fact, Christians’ love for each other is the church’s most powerful apologetic to the unbelieving world (John 13:35).

The Lord’s death, at that point only a matter of hours away, was the supreme evidence of His love, as His statement Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends indicates. Jesus did not die for Himself, but so that others might live. In Romans 5:6–8 Paul wrote,

For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

In a marvelously concise statement—only fifteen words in the Greek text—Paul summarized Christ’s substitutionary atonement for believers: “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Cor. 5:21). Peter reminded his readers that “Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God” (1 Peter 3:18). Echoing the Lord’s words in this passage, John wrote, “We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren” (1 John 3:16). Then the apostle expressed the practical implications of that truth: “But whoever has the world’s goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him? Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth” (vv. 17–18). The friends of Jesus Christ show their love for one another by humbly meeting each other’s needs.[1]


No Greater Love

John 15:12–14

“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command.”

There is something charming about the word “friend” or “friendship.” It is due partly to our desire for a close friend or friends and partly, too, to our remembrance of them. We look to our past and can almost mark the major periods of our lives by friends we have had. We think of the friends who went to grade school with us and of the things we did with them. Perhaps at the point of going into high school we made different friends, and we think sometimes, not only of the friends, but of the adventures we had—sometimes adventures that the teachers or other authorities did not entirely appreciate. We have had college friends and those we have acquired later in life. We value friendship and know that we would be much impoverished if we had no friends at all.

It is this awareness that probably gives the verses to which we now come their special appeal, for in them the Lord Jesus Christ, the great incarnate God of the universe, speaks of friendship in terms of our relationships to him. He calls us friends, saying, “Greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you.”

Human Friendship

When Jesus says, “You are my friends,” it is evident that he is speaking to us on the human level in terms we can clearly understand. And he is doing so—we cannot fail to see it—so that we might contrast his friendship, which is great and perfect, to even the best of the other friendships we have known.

The best known of the biblical examples is the friendship between Jonathan, the son of King Saul, and David, the young hero of Israel. Jonathan was in line for the throne. But David was so evidently blessed of God that the people were saying that he should be the next king. Here was cause for great antagonism, antagonism between the apparent rights of the one and the supposed aspirations of the other. But there was no antagonism. Instead there was a great and beautiful friendship. It was a case in which each sacrificed in order to put the other’s interests ahead of his own.

Sometimes the love that exists between one friend and another leads to the ultimate sacrifice, to death. A friend of mine tells that as he was growing up he knew a man who in a sublime moment of self-sacrifice gave his life to try to save his grandson. The two were out in a boat on the Monongahela River in West Virgina, and neither of them could swim. The child, for one reason or another, fell overboard and was drowning. So the man jumped in after the child. Both drowned. But afterward when they found the bodies, the grandfather still had the young child clutched in his arms. He had been so anxious to save his grandson that he had not even opened up his arms to attempt to swim to save himself.

When we hear a story like that we tend to become silent, for we know that we stand before something sublime. It is the ultimate sacrifice, the sacrifice of one’s life. Because of such sacrifices we understand what the Lord is saying when he declares in clear reference to his own self-sacrifice: “Greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”

Friend of Sinners

On the other hand, it is not really fair to talk about Jesus’ sacrifice in merely human terms, for his death surpasses anything we can imagine. It may not happen often, but sometimes one human being will voluntarily die for another; still, this gift never equals or even parallels Jesus’ sacrifice. We see this when we reflect on Jesus’ death.

First, when we begin to reflect on Jesus’ death we recognize that his death was exceptional if only because Jesus did not have to die. That is not true of us. We are mortal. We must die. But Jesus was immortal and therefore did not have to die. Indeed, he was life itself; for he said, “I am the way and the truth and the life” (John 14:6). He could have come into this world, performed a full and varied ministry, and then have returned to heaven without ever having experienced death. On the other hand, of us it is said, “Man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment” (Heb. 9:27). What does this mean in terms of self-sacrifice? Merely this. If you or I were to give our lives for someone else, while that would undoubtedly be a great and heroic sacrifice, it would nevertheless at best be merely an anticipation of what must eventually come anyway. We would simply be dying a bit sooner than normally. The Lord did not need to die under any circumstances.

Second, the death of the Lord Jesus Christ is exceptional in that he knew he would die. Again, this is not usually the case when a mere man or woman gives his or her life for another. Few who die in this way do so knowing in advance that they will die. Rather, it is usually the case that although the act is a risk and death is possible, they nevertheless think they may escape death while yet saving their friend. People take calculated risks and sometimes die, but they do not often die deliberately. Jesus by his own testimony deliberately went to the cross to die for our salvation.

There is another area in which the love of the Lord Jesus Christ for his friends shines brighter than any love of which we are capable. The text says that we are Christ’s friends and that he was going to give his life for his friends. But if we think of this closely and honestly, we must recognize that, when the Lord Jesus gave his life for us, strictly speaking we were not exactly his friends. True, he calls us friends. It is also true that we become his friends. But we become friends because of his act, because of his electing grace toward us manifesting itself in the atonement and in the ministry of his Spirit by which our natural rebellion against God is overcome and our hearts are drawn to love and serve Jesus. When he died for us, or (if we may push that even farther back) when in eternity past he determined to die for us, he did so while we were yet enemies or were forseen to be enemies. It was “while we were still sinners, [that] Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8).

Here especially do we see the wonderful love of the Lord Jesus Christ. So long as we think of ourselves as being somewhat good in God’s sight we do not see it. But when we see ourselves as God sees us, then the surpassing worth of the love of Christ becomes evident.

It is this that leads up to the verse I have just quoted from Paul’s treatment of the human condition in Romans. The opening chapter of that book deals with man’s sin, showing how all men and women have possessed a certain knowledge of God but have turned from that knowledge in order to worship a god of their own devising. Paul says that a certain knowledge of the existence and power of God is disclosed in nature and in the consciences of all men and women. But we have rejected that knowledge. Paul says, “For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles ” (Rom. 1:21–23).

There are certain consequences of this, as the chapter goes on to show. We have given up God. So, says Paul, in a certain sense God has given us up. He has given us up to certain consequences. Three times in this chapter we read that “God gave them over.” In every case, however, we are told what God gave them over to. This is important, for it is not as if God were holding the human race in his hand and then let go with the result that the human race simply drifted off into nowhere. If I let go of an object, the object falls. I have not given it up to nothing. I have given it up to the law of gravity, and the law of gravity draws it downward. In the same way, God gives us over to the sad consequences of our rebellion.

First of all, God has given us over to “sexual impurity” (v. 24). That is, when we turn our backs upon God, who is perfect in his purity, we inevitably become dirty spiritually.

Second, God has given us over to “shameful lusts” (v. 26). That is, the good affections we have and that we rightly cherish become warped because they are severed from their source. Love becomes lust. A proper sense of responsibility becomes the driving pride of personal ambition. Self-sacrifice becomes selfishness, and so on.

Third, God says that he has given us over to a “depraved mind” (v. 28). This means that we have developed a way of thinking that is antagonistic toward God so that we are constantly devising philosophies and actions that try to eliminate his presence from our lives.

These important verses from Romans give God’s assessment of the human race. He made us. More than this, he made us in his own image. But we have rebelled against him and defaced that image. Instead of God’s glory, we have advanced man’s depravity. Instead of his sovereignty, we have sought human autonomy. Instead of holiness, we have sin. Instead of love, hate. Yet, in spite of our depravity, Christ came to be our friend and prove his friendship by dying for us. As Paul states, “At just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:6–8).

Spiritual Death

There is one more reason why the love of the Lord Jesus Christ for his friends, seen in his death for us, is superior to all human loves. The death of the Lord was a spiritual death, whereas ours, if we are Christians, is only physical.

If we were to give our life for someone else, the death we would endure would be only physical. We cannot die spiritually in the place of another person. But that is precisely what Jesus Christ did. Death is separation. Physical death is the separation of the soul and spirit from the body. Spiritual death is the separation of the soul and spirit from God. This is what makes hell such a terrible place; those in hell are separated from God. And because God is the source of all good—all joy, peace, love, and other blessings—hell is the opposite. It is misery, unrest, hate, and so on. This is the separation that Jesus endured for us. He died physically also; that is true. His death was particularly painful and degrading. But the truly horrible aspect of his death was his separation from the Father when he was made sin for us and bore sin’s punishment.

This is the meaning of the cry wrung from his lips in that moment: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” I do not know how to explain that. I do not know how it is possible for the second person of the Godhead to be separated from the first person of the Godhead, even for a brief time, as this was. But this is what happened as Jesus experienced ultimate spiritual death in order that we might never have to experience it. Love like that goes beyond our best understanding.

These truths and more are involved in Christ’s statement: “Greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” We read that and acknowledge its truth. But then we go on to say, “Yes, and greater love has no one at all—either man, devil, or angel—than that the Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, should die a spiritual death for us sinners.”

Do you know him as the One who demonstrated his love and friendship for you by thus dying? Is he your friend in that sense? If not, you are not yet truly a Christian. But you can be. You can find him to be your friend, indeed, a superlative friend. As the hymn says:

There’s not a friend like the lowly Jesus,

No not one! No not one!

You need only come to him, confessing your sin and acknowledging your need of him to be your Savior.

Friends of Jesus

There is one other question that arises from our text. I have asked, “Is Jesus your friend?” This is the question that emerges from verse 13 in which Jesus speaks of his love and, therefore, of his friendship for us. But in the next verse we have what might be called the other side of that question. It is, “Are you Christ’s friend?” Jesus suggests this when he declares, “you are my friends if you do what I command you” (v. 14).

I am glad the Lord put it as he did, for I suppose that if we had come to him and had asked, “Lord, you have shown yourself to be a friend to us; what must we do to be your friends?” Jesus could have answered, “You have my example of what a true friend is; do that.” But if he had said that, we would have been discouraged. How could you or I do that—love as he loves, give ourselves as he gave himself? It is impossible for us to die spiritually for someone else. If Jesus had required us to do all he did, it would be impossible to become his friend. But he did not say that. Instead, he put the requirements in our terms and on our level, saying, “You can be my friends if you will only do what I command you.” This means that we are to show our friendship to him by simple obedience.

Did I say “simple”? Yes, it is simple; but it is simple obedience, and this means that it must be active, continuous, and in all things. We see that our obedience must be active, for Jesus said, “You are my friends if ye do. …” Unfortunately some Christians talk about the Christian life as though it consisted largely in refusing to do certain things. If we fall into that way of thinking, we imagine after we have refused to drink alcohol, refused to play cards, refused to have extramarital sex, refused to cheat in business, and so on, that we have done a great deal. But we have not. We have obeyed negatively but not positively. Christ calls upon us to love one another, and that cannot be done except in very practical ways. We are also to pray. We are to worship with other Christians. Our lives are to be marked by good deeds. It would make a great difference in the lives of many Christians if, as they read their Bibles and pray each day, they would pause as part of their devotions to ask what practical things the Lord would have them do.

Second, our obedience should also be continuous. Jesus did not say, “If you do what I command and then quit” or “If you do it on Sundays” or “If you do it when you feel like it.” The verb is a present subjunctive meaning “If you are doing.” The idea is of continuous action, day after day, year after year. There is no vacation from being a disciple of the Lord.

Finally, our obedience is to be in all things, for he says, “If you do whatever I command you.” It means coming to him in love to do whatever he asks of us, not picking and choosing as some do, not exalting those aspects of the Christian faith we like and neglecting those we dislike. Rather it means coming with that yielded humility of mind and body that places us prostrate at his feet and asks from that position, “Lord, what will you have me do?” It is only when we ask that question and mean it that we find ourselves being lifted up to do the great errands of our king, and not as slave either, but rather as a friend of Jesus.

I asked earlier, “Is Jesus your friend?” Now I must ask, “Are you Christ’s friend by this definition?” God grant that you might be, to your own great joy and to the praise of his glory.[2]


12 It is worth noting that the aorist tense (ēgapēsa, GK 26, “loved”) is used to call attention to the love of Jesus as demonstrated once and for all on the cross, while the present tense (agapate) is used to stress the continuous relationship of love that should exist between believers.[3]


Love (vv. 12–13)

You can’t get much higher than this. Our love for others should be a reflection of Christ’s self-giving, sacrificial love that was to take him to the cross at Calvary; a love that didn’t count the cost; a love that reached out to the undeserving; a love that did everything necessary to bring the greatest blessing possible to rebels.

An inward experience and an outward expression accompany this life:

The inward experience is that of joy (v. 11). There are some who think that to obey the commands of Jesus will be boring; that it will limit our fun. Indeed, that’s why they won’t fully obey him. They think they know the way to joy better than Jesus does. But what becomes clear is that the perfect obedience of Christ to the will of God the Father ultimately resulted in joy, even on the way of the cross (see Heb. 12:2).

But Jesus also spoke of an outward expression (v. 16). This is picking up on what Jesus had said earlier about bearing fruit (vv. 2, 4, 5). So what is this fruit that Jesus is looking for? It is not Christian love. Jesus did not refer to that as fruit. It becomes clear from the expression ‘fruit that will last’ that this fruit is nothing less than others who come to saving faith through our work and witness.

So the inward experience of being in Christ is joy, and the outward expression is that there will be a passion and concern for men and women who are lost and without Christ. That’s the fruit that marks out the genuine believer.[4]


[1] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (2008). John 12–21 (pp. 156–158). Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

[2] Boice, J. M. (2005). The Gospel of John: an expositional commentary (pp. 1177–1182). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.

[3] Mounce, R. H. (2007). John. In T. Longman III & D. E. Garland (Eds.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Luke–Acts (Revised Edition) (Vol. 10, p. 577). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

[4] Paterson, A. (2010). Opening Up John’s Gospel (pp. 132–133). Leominster: Day One Publications.

November 2, 2018 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report (US•World•Christian)

REUTERS

President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping, who spoke by telephone on Thursday, expressed optimism about resolving their trade dispute ahead of a high-stakes meeting at the end of November in Argentina.

A senior Trump administration official on Friday dismissed as untrue a media report that U.S. President Donald Trump was readying a possible trade deal with China, a CNBC reporter said in a post on Twitter.

President Donald Trump said on Thursday his administration planned to require immigrants seeking asylum in the United States to come into the country through a legal port of entry, pushing a hard line on immigration ahead of elections next week.

The United States is expected to spare eight countries from U.S. sanctions because they have significantly cut imports of Iranian oil, two sources familiar with the matter said on Friday. They did not identify the eight nations, though among Iran’s biggest customers are China, India, Turkey, Japan, South Korea, the United Arab Emirates, Greece and Italy.

At least seven people have been killed and 14 wounded in attack on a bus heading toward a Coptic Christian monastery in upper Egypt, the Archbishop of Minya told Reuters on Friday.

The United States on Friday removed two top Turkish officials from the Global Magnitsky Act sanctions list, according to the Treasury Department website.

Russia and Cuba on Friday called on the United States to reconsider its intention to withdraw from a Cold War-era nuclear arms treaty, saying the move would have extremely negative consequences for international security.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S President Donald Trump will hold a long and substantive meeting on the sidelines of the G20 in Argentina which runs from Nov. 30 to Dec. 1, Kremlin aide Yuri Ushakov said on Friday.

The Commerce Department said on Friday the trade gap increased 1.3 percent to $54.0 billion, widening for a fourth straight month.

AP Top Stories

A Catholic priest said Friday that he has been punished by church leaders in France after he gathered more than 100,000 signatures for a petition calling for a cardinal to resign over his handling of child sexual abuse cases.

The American Civil Liberties Union demanded Thursday that a Hawaii retirement home stop discriminating against non-Catholic residents and allow them to take advantage of the state’s new medically assisted suicide law if they wish.

Turkish and U.S. troops began joint patrols in northern Syria on Thursday aimed at averting clashes between Turkey and Washington’s Kurdish allies, but Turkey pressed on with a new threatened offensive nearby to crush the Kurds.

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman held a rare meeting with American evangelical Christians on Thursday, as the ultra-conservative Muslim kingdom seeks to open up more to the world and repair an image of religious intolerance.

Defense specialist Allison Barrie shares information on a new bullet that is bigger, bolder and harder hitting than current rounds. This new generation of bullet will help make U.S. soldiers even more unstoppable by allowing them to shoot farther – with accuracy – than any known military rifle on earth.

Russia has quietly invited a group of senior Afghan politicians to talks with the Taliban in Moscow, bypassing President Ashraf Ghani’s government in a move that has angered officials in Kabul who say it could muddle the U.S.-backed peace process.

The UN General Assembly on Thursday called for an end to the decades-old US embargo on Cuba, adopting a resolution by an overwhelming majority and rejecting US moves to criticize Havana’s human rights record.

An activist working with several thousand Central American migrants moving through southern Mexico says the caravan’s effort to arrange bus travel to Mexico City has “failed.”

BBC

The US Labor Department said wages grew at an annual rate of 3.1% in October, accelerating from a rate of 2.8% the month before. The economy also added 250,000 jobs last month, which was well ahead of analysts’ expectations. The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 3.7%.

The US justice department has indicted three individuals and two companies based in China and Taiwan for allegedly stealing a US company’s trade secrets.

The new head of Ethiopia’s Supreme Court told the BBC’s Focus on Africa program that she wants to ensure that the country has an independent judiciary. Earlier on Thursday Meaza Ashenafi, a prominent human rights lawyer, was elected as the first woman to head the country’s top court.

Hackers appear to have compromised and published private messages from at least 81,000 Facebook users’ accounts. The perpetrators told the BBC Russian Service that they had details from a total of 120 million accounts, which they were attempting to sell, although there are reasons to be skeptical about that figure.

WND

The number of employed Americans has never been higher. The 156,562,000 Americans employed in October is the 12th record set under President Donald Trump.

Scientists have finally confirmed that the massive object at the heart of our galaxy is, in fact, a supermassive black hole.

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman held a rare meeting with American evangelical Christians on Thursday, as the ultra-conservative Muslim kingdom seeks to open up more to the world and repair an image of religious intolerance.


News – 11/2/2018

Israel Presses to End International Observer Mission in Hebron
The Temporary International Presence in Hebron, or ‎TIPH, is a civilian observer mission that was formed ‎in the wake of the 1994 Cave of the Patriarchs and Matriarchs ‎massacre, in which Jewish terrorist Baruch Goldstein ‎killed 29 Muslim worshipers and wounded 125 others ‎as they gathered for a prayer service inside the ‎holy site. ‎ Recently, however, there has been a growing number ‎of complaints alleging its members are ‎systematically and violently targeting the Jewish ‎community in Hebron. ‎

Mattis on border deployment: ‘We don’t do stunts in this department’
When asked by reporters at the Pentagon if the latest deployment of 5,200 American troops to the U.S.-Mexico border is a political stunt, Mattis responded, “We don’t do stunts in this department.” President Donald Trump on Wednesday said that up to 15,000 troops could be sent to the border in advance of the migrant caravan making its way through Mexico to the United States. This, after it was announced earlier this week that an additional 5,200 troops would deploy to the border. Such a number of troops is comparable to the number of troops currently deployed to Afghanistan.

A Snake, The Temple, and Messiah
the appearance of a snake coming out of the stones of the Temple Mount could be seen as an auspicious sign. In gematria (Hebrew numerology) nachash (snake) נחש equals 358, the same as Moshiach (Messiah) משיח. The Zohar (the basis of Jewish mysticism) explained that the evil inclination, personified by the snake in Eden, will make a resurgence in the days before Messiah,…

Oman’s foreign minister meets Abbas
Oman’s foreign affairs minister on Wednesday met Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas and delivered a letter about Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s surprise visit to the Gulf sultanate last week, AFP reported, citing official PA media. The minister, Yusuf bin Alawi, gave Abbas the letter from Oman’s Sultan Qaboos, the official PA news agency Wafa said. It provided no further details on their discussions in Ramallah.

Now Biden calls for GOP congressman to learn ‘threshold of pain’
Joe Biden only a week ago called for an end to “this division, this hatred, this ugliness” around the 2018 midterm elections. Now he’s calling for a union official to come up and show a member of Congress “a threshold of pain.” It’s the latest in the Democrats’ rhetoric calling for violence around next week’s election. A post on the Twitter news aggregating site Twitchy said it “seems like only last week when Joe Biden was decrying ‘this division, this hatred, this ugliness.’ Probably because it was only last week.” Here Biden’s latest: Joe Biden suggests union president should attack GOP Congressman @KevinCramer, “show him a threshold of pain.” https://t.co/G7SXVHVxp1 pic.twitter.com/fDIJTsnuKB

Staffer spills guv candidate’s hidden, far-left agenda Florida’s Gillum among ‘crazy, crazy’ progressives in ‘cracker state’
The Democratic candidate in a close race for governor of Florida, Rep. Andrew Gillum, is the latest target in a Project Veritas undercover video series “revealing secrets and lies from political campaigns in 2018.” Released Wednesday night, the video features campaign staffer Omar Smith, a college friend of Gillum who refers to Florida as a “f***ed up state” and a “cracker state” in which the campaign must appeal to “white guilt.”

Christian Leaders Release Video on Soros’s ‘Rented Evangelicals’
The American Association of Evangelicals (AAE) is warning about progressive wolves in Christians’ clothing. The AAE on Monday released an explosive three-minute video, “Soros’s Rented Evangelicals” exploring the George Soros network’s funding of “evangelical mascots” and a “Rent-an-Evangelical” tactic to confuse and divide the Christian vote for the pro-faith, pro-life Republican party.

Israel, China deepen business ties with bilateral collaboration agreements
Business ties between Israel and China took another step forward as several high-level bilateral collaboration agreements were signed at the fourth annual China Yunnan-Israel Innovation Cooperation Forum… One week after the business-oriented visit of Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan, a high-level business delegation from China’s southwestern Yunnan province including Vice Governor Zong Guoying arrived in the country to deepen relations with Israel’s innovation scene.

Report: China holds seminars to teach other countries how to restrict online speech
Internet freedom is in decline across much of the globe as various governments crack down on dissent and so-called fake news, according to an annual report from Freedom House, a nonprofit that receives much of its funding from the U.S. government. China is not only continuing to restrict online speech within its own borders, but also providing seminars and tours to delegations from other countries, where it promotes its restrictive techniques and tools.

Finnish soldiers find ‘secret Russian military bases’ after raiding mysterious island
Retired to a tiny island in an archipelago between Finland and Sweden, Leo Gastgivar awoke early one morning to visit the outhouse in his bathrobe, only to notice two black speedboats packed with Finnish commandos in camouflage fatigues waiting in the bay near his front door. After an exchange of awkward greetings, Mr Gastgivar went inside, collected a pair of binoculars and watched aghast as the commandos raced off towards the island of his nearest neighbour, a mysterious Russian businessman he had never met or even seen.

Cross talk: Federal agencies clash on cellphone cancer risk
Two U.S. government agencies are giving conflicting interpretations of a safety study on cellphone radiation: One says it causes cancer in rats. The other says there’s no reason for people to worry. No new research was issued Thursday. Instead, the National Toxicology Program dialed up its concerns about a link to heart and brain cancer from a study of male rats that was made public last winter.

Report: Palestinian factions agree to temporary halt of violence
The Palestinian factions in Gaza have agreed to temporarily halt the violence on the border in order to chance the Egyptian efforts to reach ceasefire understandings with Israel, a source in the strip told Ynet on Thursday. According to the source, the agreement between the Palestinian factions includes a halt to incendiary balloons, tire burning and the nightly protests on the border.

U.S. grants eight countries Iran sanctions waivers: Bloomberg
The U.S. government has agreed to let eight countries, including close allies South Korea and Japan, as well as India, keep buying Iranian oil after it reimposes sanctions on Tehran next week, Bloomberg cited a U.S. official as saying. Iran’s biggest oil customers – all in Asia – have been seeking sanctions waivers to allow them to continue buying some of its oil and have argued that a total ban would spur a further rally in the price of crude.

New York Times Begins Propaganda Campaign In Attempt To Sanitize George Soros Ahead Of Midterm Elections
..Democrats and Far Left Liberals are the recipients of his funding, and in fact, George Soros recently purchased $3,000,000.00 in stock holdings of the New York Times. So is it any wonder that now the NYT has begun publishing videos and articles that attempt to show Soros in a positive light, and cast the people who expose him for the evil he truly is as ‘conspiracy nuts’ and ‘right wing extremists’?

800 influential Islamic scholars from 120 countries to meet in order to establish that Islam is a religion of peace that poses no threat to the world
If it really were a religion of peace, they wouldn’t have to hold big conferences to prove it; it would be obvious to everyone. But there is an unfortunate reality that the Forum for Promoting Peace in Muslim Societies is likely to ignore: there has never been a period since the beginning of Islam that was characterized by large-scale peaceful coexistence between Muslims and non-Muslims.

French President Emmanuel Macron Says He Has Middle East ‘Peace Plan’ If Trump’s Long-Awaited Proposal Fails
Rumors about the details of President Trump’s peace plan between Israel and the Palestinians swirl incessantly, but almost no tangible details have surfaced so far.

BETO BOMBSHELL: New Video Shows Staffers Used Campaign Funds to ‘ILLEGALLY AID’ Migrant Caravan
Unbelievable undercover footage released by Project Veritas Thursday raises serious legal and ethical questions surrounding Beto O’Rourke’s senate campaign; revealing top staffers potentially violated federal law by using campaign finances to help undocumented workers traveling with the ‘migrant caravan.’

Trump is sending US troops to the Mexican border to stop the migrant caravans threatening to invade the US – and they WILL be armed
The Pentagon is preparing to send as many as 5,000 additional troops to the southwest border to assist the Border Patrol, more than doubling the military presence there, according to two U.S. officials.

New hardcore Brazil President to close ‘Palestinian’ embassy: “You do not negotiate with terrorists and they’re not a country”
A refreshing dose of reality from a country that has supported the “Palestinian” jihad for a considerable period.

US military stokes World War 3 tensions with launch of massive Global Thunder nuclear drills
SIMMERING international tensions have been ramped up with the launch of the US military’s Global Thunder 2019 command and control exercise.

MIDDLE EAST BOMBSHELL: ‘Palestinians’ End Recognition of Israel, Void All Peace Agreements With the Jewish State
The Palestinian Central Council (PCC), which met in Ramallah over two days, decided on Monday to end all commitments in the agreements the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) has signed with Israel, to end security coordination and to revoke the Paris Economic Protocols which govern the economic cooperation with Israel.

Meadows: Investigate FBI for being ‘weaponized’ by Obama
Did bureau lie to spy on members of Trump campaign?

US Therapists Report Rise in ‘Trump Anxiety Disorder’ Cases
Therapists in the United States are reporting a spike in the number of patients being treated for a recent phenomenon that’s been dubbed “Trump Anxiety Disorder.”

EU Trials Orwellian AI Lie Detector Border Guard at Airports
New trials for an EU-funded scheme for Artifical Intelligence lie-detector systems which aim to scan travelers who government flag as suspicious.

Toddler dies of measles in Jerusalem, in first such incident in 15 years | The Times of Israel
An 18-month-old toddler has died of measles in Jerusalem, the first recorded death from measles in the past 15 years. According to officials at the capital’s Shaare Zedek Hospital, the infant was not vaccinated against the virulently contagious disease.

Malta’s Government Publicly Condemns Singer for Saying He is No Longer Gay, Found Jesus
A contestant on Malta’s version of the X Factor television series is under fire for publicly declaring that he is a former homosexual who gave his life to Jesus.

As Venezuela’s health system collapses, disease spreads beyond its borders
…Brazilian doctors near the Venezuelan frontier marked the start of an imported measles epidemic that is still ravaging the Brazilian Amazon. It was the first time in nearly two decades that the highly contagious virus had appeared in this tropical region, home to a growing number of Venezuelan migrants. The disease has also spread to Argentina, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru.

Report: Armed Gaza factions agree to temporarily rein in border violence
Armed factions in the Gaza Strip have agreed to temporarily rein in violence along the security fence with Israel ahead of Friday’s weekly border clashes, a Hamas official told the Ynet news site on Thursday.

Freed! Christian who was given death sentence for offering Muslims water
The Supreme Court of Pakistan has concluded that a story accusing a Christian woman who offered her Muslim co-workers water was “concocted” to charge her with the capital offense of blasphemy, and “the appellant being innocent deserves acquittal.”

Armed Citizens Join the Front Lines to Help Prevent Caravan Riders From Entering the U.S.
The United States Border Patrol alerted Texas landowners about the possibility of armed citizens being on their property. These men and women have decided to join the Border Patrol and the National Guard on the front lines of the United States-Mexico border to prevent illegal aliens from entering the U.S.

DHS Telling Border Residents “We Can’t Protect You”
…This country is not just dealing with an impending border breach by tens of thousands of migrants. We are looking at a paramilitary guerrilla force that will be inserted into this country with predesigned acts of terrorism to be carried out on US soil. America is indeed at war! And the architect of it all, is none other than George Soros.


Mid-Day Snapshot

The Foundation

“To cherish and stimulate the activity of the human mind, by multiplying the objects of enterprise, is not among the least considerable of the expedients, by which the wealth of a nation may be promoted.” —Alexander Hamilton (1791)

In Today’s Edition

  • Republicans have their closing argument: A roaring economy.
  • Trump is actually very “warm and consoling” in person, says rabbi.
  • Marsha Blackburn serves a model opposition ad in Tennessee.
  • If Democrats win, expect a renewed push for “free” college tuition.
  • Deregulation worked in 1978 for airlines, as we can still see today.
  • Ben & Jerry team up with anti-Semitic, anti-Trump resistance.
  • Daily Features: Top Headlines, Memes, Cartoons, Columnists, and Short Cuts.

Roaring Economy Is GOP’s Best Election Pitch

Will voters reward the GOP, or has Democrats’ divisive rhetoric really made voters “tired of winning”?

Rabbi Debunks Leftmedia Anti-Trump Narrative

Behind the scenes, Trump shows a surprisingly “warm and personal side” that America rarely sees.

Blackburn’s Best Opposition Ad Yet

Phil Bredesen will represent national Democrats, not his fellow Tennesseans.

The High Cost of ‘Free’ College

If Democrats win, expect a push to expand federal giveaways for college tuition.

Airline Deregulation at 40: Flying the Friendly Skies

Back when 1970s Democrats offered proof positive that deregulation does work.

Ben & Jerry’s Serves Up Anti-Semitic Resistance

The ice cream company supports leaders tied to infamous anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan.

Video: After Calling for Dialing Down Rhetoric, the Left Ramps It Up

A montage of Leftmedia voices calling Trump racist, misogynist, evil, and other things.

Friday Short Cuts

“It’s good to remember there’s a multibillion dollar industry based on keeping you in a perpetual state of stupidity, rage, resentment, and paranoia.” —David Burge

Friday Top Headlines

Economy, asylum, Demo plans, Republicans bullied, Facebook censorship, and more.

Today’s Opinion

David Harsanyi
The Left’s Response to the Mass Shooting of Jews Was an Act of Bad Faith
Michael Reagan
Birthright Citizenship Is Wrong for America
Rich Lowry
Trump Should Put Away His Pen and Phone
Rebecca Hagelin
Hate, Division, Socialism, and the Sunshine State
Erick Erickson
There Is More to Life Than Politics

Today’s Meme


Today’s Cartoon


Apostasy Watch Daily News

Costi Hinn – The Importance of Preaching Sound Doctrine

Pastor Arrested on Charges of Filming 100s of Voyeurism Videos of Female Staff, Students at School

O.C. Prosecutors Warn Public of ‘Faith Healing’ Business Under Investigation for Allegedly Targeting Latinos, Defrauding Them of Savings

Facebook lets Antifa group encourage their followers to burn down housing developments

Amazon to Premiere New Comedy About Pastor and Prostitute in ‘Pastor and the Pro’

Abortion pills now available by mail in US — but FDA may be investigating


Headlines – 11/2/2018

Greenblatt returning to Israel this weekend for continued talks on the administration’s upcoming peace plan

Brazil president-elect Bolsonaro: Will move embassy in Israel to Jerusalem

Netanyahu said to urge Washington to stick by Saudi crown prince

Egypt to host war games, in possible nod to growing anti-Iran alliance

Iran braces for oil sanctions after currency crash, protests

Iran’s FM claims Israeli intelligence sabotaging nuclear deal

PM: Iran ‘most potent force of militant Islam’; threatens Israel, Europe alike

Norway summons Iranian ambassador over Denmark assassination plan

Netanyahu warns Europe of possible attacks by Iran

Netanyahu Embarks for Bulgaria Summit, Aims to Counter ‘EU’s Hostile Approach’

Ahead of Varna Summit, Netanyahu Says He Wants to Change ‘Hypocritical and Hostile Attitude’ of EU Toward Israel

Israel breaks up PA-led conference in East Jerusalem, arrests local governor – Israeli officials accused organizers of seeking to erode Israeli sovereignty in the city

Gaza protest leaders to urge calm on border amid ceasefire efforts

Senior Hamas Official: Gaza Factions Agree to End Violent Protests Along Israel Border

Israel said to warn Beirut it will strike Hezbollah rocket factories

Report: Iran-Backed Hezbollah Pays Syrian Rebels to Switch Sides

Russia: News about Khashoggi’s death inflated by political machinations

Khashoggi murder: Saudi prince ‘said he was dangerous Islamist’

Saudi Crown Prince meets with American Evangelical Christian leaders

Saudi-led Coalition Masses Troops Near Yemen’s Hodeidah as Pressure Mounts to End War

Yemen’s government welcomes efforts to establish peace

U.N. urges end to U.S. embargo on Cuba, U.S. raises rights concerns

Israel again sole US backer as world urges end to Cuba blockade

Bolton brands Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua a ‘troika of tyranny’ in sanctions rollout

Trump announces plan to deny asylum-seekers who don’t show up at ports of entry, in latest major immigration policy shift

Trump says troops should shoot migrants who throw rocks

Tree of Life rabbi says he was ‘pleasantly surprised’ by Trump’s personal side

Amb. David Friedman to Jews: Stop fighting over Pittsburgh massacre

Brooklyn synagogue defaced with ‘Kill the Jews’ graffiti

Pelosi subpoena threat ‘illegal,’ Trump says, will take to Supreme Court

More blame a divided America on the media than on Trump

How Vilification of George Soros Moved From the Fringes to the Mainstream

Chinese-style ‘digital authoritarianism’ grows globally: study

Father of Web says tech giants may have to be split up

Skull-Shaped ‘Halloween Asteroid’ Will Zip by Earth Again This Month

6.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Iquique, Chile

5.8 magnitude earthquake hits near Bristol Island, South Sandwich Islands

5.4 magnitude earthquake hits near Tanabe, Japan

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 23,000ft

Sangay volcano in Ecuador erupts to 22,000ft

Reventador volcano in Ecuador erupts to 19,000ft

Fuego volcano in Guatemala erupts to 16,000ft

Flooding in Venice can’t stop pizzeria from serving customers in ankle-deep water

Biologists Have Started Their Attempt to Sequence the DNA of Every Living Thing on Earth

Israel battles measles outbreak as infant dies of disease

Police Say An HIV Positive Man Had Unprotected Sex With Children

Robot love: The race to create the ultimate AI sex partner

Apple, Google, and Amazon join list of over 50 companies opposing any Trump administration rollback of transgender rights

Tanzania announces ‘surveillance squad’ to hunt down homosexuals

Halloween violence, looting sees more than 110 arrested in France


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RenewAmerica Newsletter for November 2, 2018

November 2, 2018
BRYAN FISCHER — According to a column written by leftists Peter Leyden and Ruy Texeira, America is hopelessly divided into two opposite camps, camps which have become so polarized that there is no common ground or possibility of compromise between them. I agree with their thesis…. (more)


November 2, 2018
JERRY NEWCOMBE — It sounds like a cliche, but this may well be the most important mid-term election in our lifetime. On the ballot, at least indirectly, will be socialism. Will Americans choose so-called “free stuff” or freedom?… (more)


November 2, 2018
WASHINGTON TIMES — Rabbi Jeffrey Myers of the Pittsburgh synagogue targeted in an anti-Semitic attack that left 11 people dead told CNN Thursday morning that he was “pleasantly surprised” by President Trump’s visit Tuesday because he was able to witness the “warm and personal side” of the president that the rest of America often misses out on. “The president was very warm, very consoling,” Rabbi Myers told “New Day” anchor Alisyn Camerota…. (more)


November 1, 2018
WASHINGTON TIMES — The broadcast news media has not been kind to President Trump since he was elected. Consistent studies from the Media Research Center showed that, on average, 90 percent of the coverage of Mr. Trump has been hostile. Broadcasters now appear intent on creating a negative grand finale as the midterm elections loom, lashing out at the GOP as well…. (more)

November 1, 2018
REUTERS — Silicon Valley technology giants such as Facebook and Google have grown so dominant they may need to be broken up, unless challengers or changes in taste reduce their clout, the inventor of the World Wide Web told Reuters…. (more)

November 1, 2018
NEWSMAX — Forty-seven percent of registered voters say President Donald Trump deserves credit for the United States’ booming economy, according to a Harvard-Harris poll released ­Wednesday. The survey was taken nearly a week after former President Barack Obama took credit for the economic gains made during Trump’s time in office. Only 21 percent of respondents said they thought Obama was responsible for the current state of the economy…. (more)

November 1, 2018
‘The people have spoken. The cover-up stops now’
JOE KOVACS — Despite a near complete blackout of national media coverage, the controversial film “Gosnell; The Trial of America’s Biggest Serial Killer” has scored a 98% percent positive rating from movie fans on RottenTomatoes.com…. (more)


November 1, 2018
Democrats typically need 85% to win nationally
ART MOORE — President Trump’s approval among black voters hit a record-high 40 percent a week ahead of the midterm elections, according to a Rasmussen survey. Typically, the Gateway Pundit pointed out, Democrats need about 85 percent of the African-American vote to win national elections…. (more)

November 1, 2018
WASHINGTON TIMES — CNN anchor Don Lemon declared Tuesday night that the biggest terror threat the country faces today is “white men” and that something needs to be done about them. Mr. Lemon made the comments while speaking to fellow anchor Chris Cuomo about last week’s killing of two black men at a Kentucky supermarket in an apparent hate crime. It came just days before Saturday’s mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue and amid a rash of pipe bombs mailed to more that a dozen high-profile Democrats. All of the alleged perpetrators appear to be white men…. (more)

November 1, 2018
Ann Coulter offers defense for Trump action to clarify birthright citizenship
ANN COULTER — Having mastered fake news, now the media are trying out a little fake history. In the news business, new topics are always popping up, from the Logan Act and the emoluments clause to North Korea. The all-star panels rush to Wikipedia, so they can pretend to be experts on things they knew nothing about an hour earlier…. (more)

November 1, 2018
Did bureau lie to spy on members of Trump campaign?
WORLDNETDAILY — The words “FBI investigation” have struck terror in the heart of many a wrong-doer over the years. Now, however, it could mean an investigation of the FBI. Specifically, whether its interaction with the secret court that must approve surveillance operations constituted illegal acts. The chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., is asking the head of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to determine whether the FBI engaged in misconduct, such as lying, to surveil members of President Trump’s 2016 campaign…. (more)

November 1, 2018
CNN — The body of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was dismembered after he was strangled as soon as he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, the chief prosecutor’s office in Istanbul said Wednesday. This was carried out as part of a premeditated plan, according to a statement by the chief prosecutor’s office…. (more)

November 1, 2018
NPR — Marijuana, it seems, is not a performance-enhancing drug. That is, at least, not among young people, and not when the activity is learning. A study published Tuesday in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry finds that when adolescents stop using marijuana – – even for just one week – – their verbal learning and memory improve. The study contributes to growing evidence that marijuana use in adolescents is associated with reduced neurocognitive functioning…. (more)

October 30, 2018
WASHINGTON TIMES — President Trump paid his respects Tuesday to the victims of a mass shooting at a synagogue in Pittsburgh, while a coalition of liberal groups sought to gain partisan advantage by blaming the president for the tragedy and urging the public to “vote against anti-Semitism” on Election Day…. (more)

October 30, 2018
WASHINGTON TIMES — House Majority Whip Steve Scalise literally had no words to describe his reaction to commentary on political violence by CNN’s Don Lemon. The Louisiana Republican, the party’s third-ranking House member, simply shared an image of shocked eyeballs on Tuesday after hearing Mr. Lemon’s claim that Democrats aren’t “killing people because of political [motivations].” “This is not equal,” Mr. Lemon said Monday about political violence in the U.S…. (more)

October 30, 2018
DENNIS PRAGER — All my life I have reminded fellow Jews in America that we are the luckiest Jews to have ever lived in a non-Jewish country. I know what I’m talking about. I wrote a book on anti-Semitism, taught Jewish history at Brooklyn College, and fought anti-Semitism since I was 21, when Israel sent me into the Soviet Union to smuggle in Jewish religious items and smuggle out Jewish names…. (more)

October 30, 2018
WASHINGTON EXAMINER — Nearly three-quarters of those in the caravan of Central American migrants traveling through Mexico to the United States are adult men, a senior Border Patrol official told the Washington Examiner…. (more)


October 30, 2018
Alan Keyes trounces Catholic clerics who violate their vows
ALAN KEYES — An article in America – The Jesuit Review purports to substantiate the notion that “homosexuality is not a risk factor for the sexual abuse of children.” It purports to substantiate the conclusion that the victims of clerical abuse by Catholic clergy are mostly boys because boys are more available to priests, not because so many priests are homosexuals…. (more)

October 29, 2018
JOAN SWIRSKY — This past Saturday morning, 11 Jews were shot to death in a Pittsburgh synagogue by one of the millions of Jew haters who contaminate our world. To Jews like me, who know and appreciate Jewish history as I do, this is no surprise. Tragic, yes; shocking, no…. (more)

October 29, 2018
NEWSMAX — They were professors and accountants, dentists and beloved doctors serving their local community. A day after the shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue that left 11 dead, officials released the names of the victims. The oldest of them was 97. The youngest was 54. They included a pair of brothers and a husband and wife…. (more)


October 29, 2018
STEPHEN STONE — Those who doubt President Trump’s claim that the media have stirred up “great anger in our country…by inaccurate, and even fraudulent, reporting of the news” should consider a vivid distortion the media got away with in June…. (more)

October 29, 2018
Chancellor tells Christian Democrats she also will not seek re-election as party chairwoman in December
THE GUARDIAN — After dominating European politics for well over a decade, Angela Merkel has said her fourth term as Germany’s chancellor will be her last. Speaking after disastrous regional elections in Hesse and Bavaria for her Christian Democrats and its Bavaria-only sister party, Merkel on Monday said she saw the results as a “clear signal that things can’t go on as they are”…. (more)

October 29, 2018
‘The sex listed on a person’s birth certificate shall constitute a person’s sex’
ROBERT KNIGHT — The idea of two distinct sexes has been acknowledged as fundamental reality for thousands of years by billions of people, biology and every major religion. The Trump administration agrees, which is why the Health and Human Services Department is circulating a proposal defining gender this way for purposes of interpreting Title IX of the Civil Rights Act:… (more)

October 29, 2018
CHERYL K. CHUMLEY — President Donald Trump is mulling an executive order that would stop the caravan in its tracks and send the thousands and thousands of people trying to cross America’s borders back to their homes. That makes perfect sense. It’s a viable solution that would lead to a redefining of asylum seekers – – a honing, of sorts, of the criteria that determines who gets into the country versus who gets refused…. (more)

October 27, 2018
BRYAN FISCHER — John Kasich was quick to condemn President Trump for being un-Christlike by seeking to stop the invading army of thousands of illegal aliens snaking its way across Mexico. After all, Kasich says, Jesus taught the story of the Good Samaritan to teach us that we as a nation should throw our borders and our arms open wide and welcome them to cross our sovereign border en masse…. (more)

 

DBG Spotlight Weekend Edition (11-2-18) — Christian Blogs – Delivered By Grace

Voddie Baucham preached in the 2018 G3 Conference on the subject, “The Heart of Discipleship.” You will want to carve out time to listen to this sermon and then consider making your plans to join us this January by registering at G3Conference.com.

The Statement on SJ&G Explained: Article 9, Heresy (Justin Peters) — The latest in the series of explanatory articles on the Statement on Social Justice.

Download Post Tenebras Lux: A Symphonic Celebration of the Protestant Reformation — If you appreciate quality music and skilled arrangements you will love this.

What’s Wrong with the Prosperity Gospel? — Tim Challies answers questions about the prosperity gospel in Ecuador.

Episode 62: On How to Prepare a Church to Practice Discipline — If one of the marks of an authentic church is the practice of biblical church discipline, you would do well to consider what that looks like in the life of your local church.

Is the Reformation Over? — R.C. Sprout answers the question.

5 Reasons You’ll Love the New Logos 8 Libraries — If you enjoy Logos (like me), you will want to look into Logos 8.

Most “Nones” (& Lots of Christians) Believe in New Age Religion — This is proof positive of the need for solid biblical teaching.

via DBG Spotlight Weekend Edition (11-2-18) — Christian Blogs – Delivered By Grace

November 2 Stand Firm

Stand fast in the Lord.

Philippians 4:1

Today’s verse calls to mind a picture of a soldier standing his ground in the midst of battle. Paul used the same metaphor in Ephesians 6:11: “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” Standing fast or firm spiritually means not compromising your Christian testimony in allowing yourself to be overwhelmed by trials or temptation.

It saddens me that many believers don’t take God and His commands seriously enough. Instead of wanting to know God, many prefer to be entertained. That kind of apathy regards His commands as mere suggestions. But our sovereign Lord commands us to stand firm. Inherent in that command is the capacity to obey.[1]


[1] MacArthur, J. (2001). Truth for today : a daily touch of God’s grace (p. 331). Nashville, Tenn.: J. Countryman.