Daily Archives: January 6, 2019

January 6 Three Principles of Victory

Scripture Reading: Joshua 1:1–9

Key Verse: Joshua 1:9

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.

Jesus calmed the raging sea not so that the disciples could witness another miracle, but so that they might be caught up in the reality of His strength and personal care for them. Jesus allowed fear to captivate their hearts briefly so they could learn of Him. After the first few opening chapters of the book of Acts, we see His principles come to life in the lives of His followers. They found their strength in Jesus.

Joshua faced a similar situation as he prepared to lead Israel into the promised land. Chosen by God to complete the task, Joshua struggled with thoughts of fear and failure.

The angel of the Lord gave him three principles to keep him focused on the victory of God’s strength: (1) meditate on the Word of God daily; (2) focus, be watchful and not distracted by the turmoil around him; and (3) do exactly what God told him to do.

When you begin to realize who Jesus Christ is and how much He cares for you, your faith level will increase. The greater your faith level, the clearer His strength will become.

Remember what the angel of the Lord said to Joshua: “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go” (Josh. 1:9).

Master, I choose to meditate on Your Word today instead of my own circumstances. I want to be watchful and not distracted by the turmoil around me. Help me to do exactly what You tell me to do. Increase my faith level today.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (1999). On holy ground (p. 7). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Americans Want Border Security, And The Numbers Show It

President Trump is far from alone in his determination to secure our borders — according to a recent Gallup poll, Americans view immigration as the second-biggest problem facing the country today.

That’s bad news for the Democrat Party, which is hellbent on opposing the president’s efforts to fix our broken immigration system, especially the border wall he needs in order to get illegal immigration under control.

The Democrats have a very simple, two-part strategy on immigration: first and foremost, they want to keep President Trump from fulfilling his promises to the American people; second, they want to make it even easier for foreigners to enter this country illegally.

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With Democrats now in control of the House of Representatives, it’s no surprise that Americans are deeply troubled by the immigration crisis.

Over the past several decades, millions of illegal immigrants have successfully evaded our efforts to enforce immigration laws, putting local economies and welfare programs under tremendous pressure to cope with the massive influx of undocumented workers and their families, most of whom receive at least one form of government welfare.

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In fact, illegal immigration costs taxpayers a staggering $134.9 billion a year while contributing only $19 billion in state, federal, and local taxes. At the federal level, medical costs make up the lion’s share of government expenditures on illegal immigrants, while education is the largest single expense that illegal immigration imposes on state and local governments.

Sadly, an overloaded welfare state is not the only negative side-effect of our broken immigration system. Communities across America are also being devastated by the violent crime and drug trafficking that result from our failure to control the border — an issue Donald Trump has addressed repeatedly and emphatically ever since he first announced his candidacy for president.

Rather than letting obstructionist Democrats in Congress prevent him from addressing the immigration problem, the president has exercised his executive power to make progress on the issue wherever possible.

Thanks to the president’s diplomatic approach, for instance, the U.S. and Mexico have virtually achieved synergy on immigration, developing a joint strategy to tackle the root causes of mass migration. In response to urging from the Trump administration, Mexico is also offering incentives to deter migrants from illegally crossing the U.S. border, as well as agreeing to house asylum-seekers on its territory while their claims are processed by U.S. authorities.

President Trump has done everything in his power to strengthen immigration enforcement on our side of the border as well, even sending the military to reinforce our brave border patrol agents when a caravan of thousands of migrants threatened to overwhelm their resources.

By taking a firm stand on border security, the president is doing exactly what the people elected him to do, as Gallup’s polling confirms.

Politicians in Washington simply can’t continue to ignore the significant problems with our immigration system, and the voters know it. The Democrats now have a clear choice — they can either listen to the American people who overwhelmingly oppose illegal immigration and work with President Trump to secure the border, or they can continue to play political games in the midst of a national crisis. May they choose wisely.

Editor’s note: An earlier version of this article referred to immigration figures that have been disputed in a report by the Washington Post.

Source: Americans Want Border Security, And The Numbers Show It

The Steele Dossier Was Planned As Hillary’s Insurance Policy

Op-Ed by Larry O’Connor via the Washington Times

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

It’s been over a year since the highly damaging text messages between FBI agent Peter Strzok and his paramour, FBI lawyer Lisa Page, were revealed to the American public. The correspondence showed two senior Justice Department officials engaged in the most petty, vitriolic political diatribes while making decisions on the most sensitive investigations of the 2016 political season.

Their hatred toward then-candidate Donald Trump as well as their contempt for his supporters gave reasonable observers every reason to question whether the Hillary Clinton email investigation and the counterintelligence investigation into alleged Russian influence in the Trump campaign (Mr. Strzok and Ms. Page played key roles in both inquiries) were handled in a fair, unbiased and judicious manner.

Their behavior was so egregious that special counsel Robert Mueller removed them from his team the moment Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz told him about the text messages. Mr. Strzok was dismissed from the FBI, and further investigations are continuing.

Despite all this, defenders of the James Comey cabal and “Russia collusion” aficionados make one strong argument that seemingly debunks the spygate scandal and outrage over the upper reaches of the Obama administration’s wide-reaching surveillance operation on the campaign of the president’s rival party.

“If Comey and Loretta Lynch and Andrew McCabe and Strzok and even Obama did all of this to hurt the Trump campaign, then why didn’t they leak any of it to damage him, and how on earth did he win the election with this kind of dirty trick being played against him?” they argue. “If these guys, with all their power, set out to hurt Trump, they sure did a lousy job.”

This argument makes sense (which is why it is employed and repeated by mainstream media journalists and pundits whenever objections to Justice Department behavior in 2016 is raised on cable news) only if the sole intent of the FBI’s action in the summer of 2016 was to harm the Trump campaign.

New revelations confirm that this was not the mission of the creators and commissioners of the Steele dossier. It was, instead, to harm Mr. Trump if he won the election.

To understand this, we must first look at one of the most damaging and most misunderstood text exchanges between Mr. Strzok and Ms. Page.

On Aug. 15, 2016, two weeks after Mr. Strzok initiated Operation Crossfire Hurricane, the investigation into Russia and the Trump campaign, the senior FBI official texted to his girlfriend: “I want to believe the path you threw out for consideration in Andy’s office — that there’s no way he gets elected — but I’m afraid we can’t take that risk. It’s like an insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you’re 40.”

Some wrongly believe that the “insurance policy” reference is a scheme to keep Mr. Trump from winning the election. But this is not what insurance does. An insurance policy does not prevent a catastrophe from happening; it provides relief and restoration after the catastrophe occurs.

Mr. Strzok explains this explicitly in his text, but the mainstream media wish to ignore it. “It’s like an insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you’re 40.” He isn’t saying “in the unlikely event you get sick and could die”; he is saying this is insurance in case the worst possible thing happens. If you die. If Mr. Trump gets elected. The insurance policy is to repair the damage after Mr. Trump wins. Just in case Mr. Trump wins.

Recently unearthed documents related to a legal finding in British courts reveal that Mr. Strzok’s “insurance policy” idea was conceived months before and put into action by none other than the Clinton presidential campaign.

The Washington Times’ Rowan Scarborough reported last week that Christopher Steele, the former MI6 agent who worked for Fusion GPS and was hired with Clinton campaign cash to create his now-infamous Russian “dossier,” told a British court that he was not hired to thwart Mr. Trump’s chances to win but to undermine the legitimacy of his presidency should he win.

“Fusion’s immediate client was law firm Perkins Coie. It engaged Fusion to obtain information necessary for Perkins Coie LLP to provide legal advice on the potential impact of Russian involvement on the legal validity of the outcome of the 2016 US Presidential election,” Mr. Steele wrote in an answer to legal interrogatories.

“Based on that advice, parties such as the Democratic National Committee and HFACC Inc. (also known as ‘Hillary for America’) could consider steps they would be legally entitled to take to challenge the validity of the outcome of that election.”

An insurance policy.

The purpose of the Steele dossier was to aid a Clinton challenge to a Trump victory. “In the event you should die “

Make no mistake, certain rumors found in the dossier were leaked to the media, namely Yahoo News, Mother Jones and The New York Times, weeks before the election, but that was just an attempted October surprise with the volatile content contained in the salacious and unverified dossier.

But the reason for the project in the first place, and the very real impact of Mr. Steele’s efforts, was to delegitimize and undermine the presidency of Donald Trump. And with the help of an all-to-willing mainstream media, so far the insurance policy has paid off.

• Larry O’Connor writes about politics and the media for The Washington Times and can be heard weekday afternoons on WMAL radio in Washington. Follow Larry on Twitter @LarryOConnor.

Source: The Steele Dossier Was Planned As Hillary’s Insurance Policy

Five trends that contribute to the spirit of anti-intellectualism — THINKAPOLOGETICS.COM

For those of us that have spent out lives attempting to brig apologetics into the local churches and public square, there has always been an issue with a spirit of anti-intellectualism in both of these places. There is progress being made. However, Most recently I was reading an essay in the book above in which the author  believes there are at least five trends that contribute to a spirit of anti-intellectualism:

1. Pragmatism: In today’s world, the first question about any idea is not “Is it true or right?” but “Does it work?” Pragmatism rules over both values and thought. Result-oriented social activists are often supporters of a cause without always inquiring too closely whether their cause has a good end or whether their action is the best means to pursue it.

2. Focus on Results: We have become an impatient generation. Students quickly become bored if there is not a lot of action. “Don’t talk about it—just do it” seems to be the byword. They want to get it done, get results the instant way, or give up on it if it requires extensive thought.

3. Preoccupation with Feelings: We have also become a feeling generation. Feeling triumphs over reason in our decision-making. “If it feels good, do it” is too often the principal criterion for behavior. A subjective experience becomes more important than revealed truth or absolutes in what has been described as our post-secular university thinking. We are admonished to get in touch with our feelings. This is good, especially for males, but requires that a balance with reason also be struck.

4. Ritualism: Ritualistic attitudes have encumbered our intellectual imagination and creativity. In the church it has become an escape route to avoid our God-given responsibility to use the minds that God has given us. In educational circles, it can be identified with rote learning, learning from the professor merely to pass the exam or to be politically correct. The danger of ritualism is that it is mere performance in which ceremony has become an end in itself, a meaningless substitute for intelligent consideration.

5. Intellectual Isolationism: Profound thinkers are being increasingly isolated from the mainstream of human activity. I was once introduced to a very prolific writer who had written several dozen books. He spent all his time thinking about what the world should be like. He sought to inspire others through his writings, but he was so out of touch with where his readers were in the real world that there were few readers to inspire. As a foreign policy planner, I found it relatively easy to write policy; the critical issue was the test of relevance in the light of current events. If the intellect is left on its own, it may become dry and humorless, leading to an academic intellectualism that is devoid of emotion, drive, and meaningful action.- taken from Donald Page, “Developing the Characteristics of a Christian Mind” adapted from Christian Worldview and the Academic Disciplines: Crossing the Academy (McMaster Ministry Studies Series Book 1)
Deane E. D. Downey and Stanley E. Porter.

via Five trends that contribute to the spirit of anti-intellectualism — THINKAPOLOGETICS.COM

The Fed may have just set the Trump rally back on its course, says Jim Cramer

The Federal Reserve’s pledge to be more “patient” with its interest rate hikes erased one of the biggest obstacles to a stock market rally that went on for much of President Donald Trump’s time in office, CNBC’s Jim Cramer said Friday.

Earlier on Friday, Fed Chair Jerome Powell said in an interview with two former Fed leaders that the central bank had “no preset path” for raising interest rates and was “listening very carefully” to the market, statements that sent stocks soaring in Friday’s trading session.

The stock market endured some debilitating declines in the final months of 2018, which saw several-hundred-point swings in the major averages, often back to back. At last week’s lows, the market was up a mere 3.3 percent since Trump’s inauguration and less than 10 percent since his election.

“It was like we had rolled back the entire Trump rally,” Cramer, host of “Mad Money,” said.

The Trump rally manifested itself in several ways, most prominently in the first year of his presidency. From election night in 2016 to the market’s peak on Sep. 21, the S&P 500 index had climbed 38 percent. But the rally was “derailed” by two manmade problems, Cramer said: the trade dispute with China and the Fed’s aggressive rate hike agenda.

“After today, gratefully and thankfully, we can take that off the table, and I bet a ton of money actually flows back into the market given that Powell’s come around,” Cramer said. “He gave this market a huge and justifiable boost: the Powell Pop. Suddenly, the biggest negative had been removed.”

Monday could bring the market even more fuel as U.S.-China trade talks resume, the “Mad Money” host said, adding that the Chinese government seems “ready to deal,” or even “ready to cave.”

Better yet, the fourth-quarter sell-off of 2018 created some ample opportunity in the stock market, which has now fallen behind its historical average performance in the first two years of Trump’s administration, he said.

Cramer pointed to the earnings growth at S&P 500 companies in the first two years of Trump’s presidency: 17 percent growth in 2017 and another 27 percent growth in 2018. This year, Wall Street analysts are anticipating 10 percent growth, which may need to be revised after the Fed’s slight reversal, Cramer said.

“To me, that means we should have more upside,” he argued. “However you slice it, the 10 percent gain since Trump’s inauguration I do not think captures the fabulous earnings growth we’ve seen over the same period. A move higher is justified.”

Now, investors can go back to valuing stocks based on earnings estimates, especially if Powell stays true to his word and the Trump administration is able to secure a trade deal with Chinese officials, Cramer said.

“Remember those terrific days of the Trump rally, when the market couldn’t stop roaring higher? I’m not saying they’re back, but I do think the Fed’s new stance means the slump ran its course on Dec. 24, the day before Christmas, and today might not be the last day where we roar higher,” he said.

Source: The Fed may have just set the Trump rally back on its course, says Jim Cramer

January 6 The Initiator of Love

Scripture reading: Psalm 18:1–6

Key verse: 1 John 4:10

In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

From the beginning of time, God has been the Initiator of love (1 John 4:10). In his book Lectures in Systematic Theology, Henry Thiessen writes, “He is unlike the gods of the heathen, who hate and are angry, and the god of the philosopher, who is cold and indifferent.” God loves us with a personal and intimate love.

Those who have yet to discover the intimacy of God often view Him as being cool and demanding toward His creation. But nothing is farther from the truth. Even in the Old Testament, we find God constantly moving toward mankind in an effort to reveal more of Himself on an intimate basis. Love motivates Him to do this.

In fact, love is the motivating factor of every true relationship. It motivated the heart of God not to destroy man in the Garden of Eden. And it was the one thing that motivated Him to deliver Israel from the Egyptians.

Love brought down the walls of Jericho, and love was the motivation behind the coming of Christ. Love took our place on Calvary’s cross and later rose from the grave. And love reaches out to us each day with freshness and hope.

You were created by love to live within its embrace. Many wonder how God could love them so deeply. But He does. He is love, and He loves you and me.

Heavenly Father, I thank You that You are not a cold, indifferent God. Thank You for reaching out to me in love.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (2000). Into His presence (p. 7). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Is This Downturn A Repeat Of 2008?

Authored by Charles Hugh Smith via PeakProsperity.com,

Crashes differ, so be cautious about your assumptions…

Even people who don’t follow the stock market closely are aware that the global economy is weakening and appears to be heading into recession.

For those who track the stock market, the signs are ominous: the U.S. was the last major market to notch gains this year and in October the U.S. market followed the rest of the global markets into an extended slide which has yet to end.

Just as sobering, key sectors such as oil, banking and utilities have crashed with alarming ferocity, reaching oversold levels last seen in 2008 as the global financial system was melting down.

These sectors crashing sends an unmistakable signal: the global economy is heading into a potentially severe recession and assets will not be rising in value in a recessionary environment. So better to sell risk-assets like stocks now rather than later, and rotate the money into safe assets such as Treasury bonds.

And indeed, households now own more Treasuries than the Federal Reserve–a remarkable shift in risk appetite.

Many other indicators of recession are in the news: auto and home sales and global trade are all slumping.

Are we in a repeat of the global financial meltdown and recession of 2008-09? The sharp drop in equities is certainly reminiscent of 2008. Indeed, the December decline is the worst in a decade. Or are we entering a different kind of recession, the equivalent of uncharted waters?

And if we are entering a recession, what can central banks and governments do to ease the financial pain and damage? We can’t be sure of much, but we can be relatively confident central banks and states will respond to the cries to “do something.”  This poses two questions: what actions can central banks/states take, and will those policies work or will they backfire and make the recession worse?

A good place to start is to revisit the 2008 crisis and attempt to understand its sources and how central bank policies reversed what appeared to be a snowballing collapse of global finance– a meltdown that would have sent the global economy into a deep freeze.

Adam Tooze’s recent book Crashed: How a Decade of Financial Crises Changed the World is a forensic autopsy of the crisis, and though I have yet to read the book, I refer to Tooze’s recent article in Foreign Affairsmagazine for his take on the basic mechanics of the 2008 crash and central banks’ responses.

The story of the criminal fraud embedded in the subprime mortgage market meltdown is well known.  But as Tooze points out, these losses were less than those of the dot-com crash in 2000-02, so why did the subprime mortgage market meltdown almost collapse the global financial system?

Tooze identifies two key dynamics:

  1. Global finance had become highly integrated and leveraged by 2008–what we call hyper-coherent; in Tooze’s words, “extraordinarily tight connections between U.S. and European finance.”
  2. Non-U.S. banks, especially in Europe, had borrowed heavily in dollars to participate in U.S. financial markets.  When the panic started, global capital flows dried up and non-U.S. banks no longer had access to credit denominated in US dollars.

As capital flows and short-term lending dried up, a liquidity crisis took hold: non-U.S. banks couldn’t get their hands on enough dollars to meet their obligations.

Unable to borrow dollars, their only choice was to dump their U.S. assets, panic-selling that would have crushed the valuations of U.S. stocks, real estate and mortgage-backed securities.

U.S. banks would have then been forced to reprice their assets lower, declaring huge losses on their portfolios that would have triggered (in Tooze’s view) a  contagious bank run as the banks would have become insolvent (i.e. their assets would be less than their liabilities).

To stave off this banking crisis and a collapse in U.S. equities and real estate markets, the Federal Reserve quietly provided trillions of dollars of short-term credit to European banks, and opened currency swap lines with other central banks to supply however many dollars those banks needed to restore liquidity to their banking sectors.

To put some numbers on these dynamics: according to Tooze, global capital flows dried up 90% from 2007 to 2008, and global exports plummeted 22% within 9 months.

The long-term result of this global dollar shortage and emergency Fed policies of providing trillions of dollars in short-term USD credit and USD currency swap lines is that the dollar is more dominant now than it was before the crisis.

The USD is now the anchor commercial currency for countries representing 70% of global GDP, up from 60% in 2000. As Tooze explains, “The world’s central banks effectively became offshore divisions of the Fed, conduits for whatever dollar liquidity the financial system required.”

This interplay of over-reach, credit, currencies and policy responses is complicated, so let’s try to summarize what happened in 2008:

  1. Banks began relying more on short-term lines of credit than on cash deposits. This left them vulnerable to funding crises when credit dried up.
  2. When short-term credit dries up, this is a liquidity crisis: when credit-worthy borrowers can’t roll over their debts, this forces them to liquidate assets, panic selling which then crashes the valuations of those assets. This selling feeds a self-reinforcing feedback to reduce risk by tightening lending and dumping assets which further exacerbates the crisis.
  3. The solution to a liquidity crisis is for a central bank to open the credit and currency swap spigots wide open, which is what the Fed did.

Liquidity crises are thus relatively straightforward: providing emergency lines of credit solves the initial crisis.  Insolvent creditors can then be liquidated and losses written down in an orderly fashion.

But not all downturns are liquidity related. A conventional business-cycle recession occurs when too much credit has been extended to marginally creditworthy borrowers to fund investments in overvalued assets.

As lending to marginal borrowers / buyers is reduced, assets decline and these two conditions–tightening credit and declining asset valuations–trigger defaults which drive further tightening of credit and a self-reinforcing sell-off of assets.

Simply providing more short-term credit won’t solve this credit/business cycle downturn, though it might help safeguard creditworthy borrowers from being forced into insolvency or fire-sales of assets.

If lenders in the banking and shadow-banking sectors are overleveraged and have extended loans on overvalued assets to marginal borrowers, the only real solution is to deleverage by writing down bad debts and taking losses on assets which have declined in value.

There’s a third kind of recession: the popping of credit-asset bubbles such as the dot-com stock bubble in 2000-02 and the housing bubble in 2007-08. The Fed and other central banks didn’t stop at providing liquidity; they bought assets (mortgage backed securities and Treasury bonds) to put a floor under asset markets and support a reflation of risk assets such as stocks and housing.

Articles like this “In A World Of Warnings, “This Is The Biggest Yet” indicate there is great uncertainty in the global financial system.  This is reflected in the skittish volatility of stock markets as every rally is soon sold and the distress that’s visible in credit markets.

This suggests market participants are no longer confident about central banks’ diagnosis of the global economy’s malaise and the efficacy of their response.  If central banks and states misdiagnose the current downturn, their policy responses could make the situation worse. It’s also possible that policies that worked in the past will fail to deliver the desired results this time around.

The 2008 crisis resulted from hyper-coherent, overleveraged banks and overvalued markets exacerbated by a liquidity shortfall in USD-denominated credit. Have these conditions melted away or are they still present? It can be argued that banks have lowered their leverage, but the tight connections in global finance remain in place.  By many measures, valuations in risk-on assets such as equities and real estate are as extended as they were in 2007-08.  As for dollar shortages, many believe this is still an issue.

If the current recession is the result of credit exhaustion, i.e. companies and households cannot afford to borrow more or don’t want to borrow more, increasing liquidity won’t be effective.

If the current downturn isn’t a liquidity issue, it’s not clear what the central banks can do to maintain elevated valuations in stocks and real estate, other than buying these assets directly and in quantities large enough to offset the sort of mass liquidation we’re now seeing. Direct purchases of assets such as bonds and stocks by the major central banks have supported asset valuations for the past decade, and now that the Federal Reserve has increased interest rates and begun reducing its balance sheet, the Fed’s implicit support of high asset valuations has come to an end.

The problem with bailing out markets with direct asset purchases is, as Tooze notes at the end of his article, central banks no longer have a political carte blanche to “do whatever it takes.” He also noted that China was not participating in the currency swap lines in 2008, and so a credit crisis in China might be more difficult to contain than the European-U.S. credit/liquidity crisis of 2008. By 2015—three long year ago—Chinese businesses had already borrowed $1.7 trillion in foreign currencies, the majority being U.S. dollars. Assuming the trend continued to the present, we can estimate the sum now exceeds $2 trillion—not a trivial amount even in a large economy like China’s.

It seems the current market downturn (and looming recession) is not a repeat of either the dot-com recession (the result of the collapse of an asset bubble that was concentrated in one sector, technology) or the 2008 global financial meltdown and recession.

The current downturn arguably shares traits with three different kinds of recession: the popping of asset bubbles (like the dot-com and housing bubbles bursting), credit-currency mismatches and a panic move to de-risk (like the 2008 meltdown) and a classic business-cycle recession of credit and demand exhaustion. This will complicate the analysis and response of central banks, companies, investors and households.

Source: Is This Downturn A Repeat Of 2008?

TIM KELLER PARTNERS WITH INTERFAITH FUNDING,APA SPIRITUALITY,AND THE MORMON RELIGION TO “CHRISTIANIZE PSYCHOLOGICAL COUNSELING “ — thirtypiecesofsilverdotorg

TIM KELLER & LOST BOYS LEADING THE CHURCH INTO MORE ERROR: HOW YOKING WITH APA & MORMON CHURCH IMPACTING CHRISTIAN COUNSELING

By Thomas Littleton                                                                                          1/5/2019

Tim Keller is on yet another adventure into the abyss in the name of “redeeming culture” in the realm of Christian counseling. Keller and The Gospel Coalition decided in 2010 to make an interfaith American Psychological Association psychologist the go to guy on LGBTQ+ issues instead of the Bible and gave us the Living Out LGBTQ+ Inclusion Audit for churches and the radical Revoice conference promoting “LGBT+ flourishing ( Tim Keller’s favorite unbiblical word ) in historic ( conservative PCA and Southern Baptist ect) Christian tradition ( i.e. in our churches) . The supposedly orthodox Reformed theological  Keller and the Gospel Coalition he co-founded  work very closely with the Libertarian /Catholic- Acton Institute .

Acton Institute provides the chief editor for TGC and has given our seminaries, Christian universities and homeschool curriculum the unbridled but stealthy influence of Catholic social policy (which is driven by Catholic theology). The Curriculum and it’s version of Austrian School of economics produced the now highly controversial fruit of conservative churches being urged to embrace the classic social gospel – now touted as “ social justice  is a Gospel issue” resulting in the church being transformed into a global communitarian “Village”. That communitarian church vision is now charged with distributing justice and redistributing the wealth of western civilization through the church. Keller’s almost 500 church plants have been resourced for years and trained by the shallow and growth driven corporate models directly provided to Redeemer Church by the Willow Creek Association.

If the merging of these spurious influences were the true Gospel we would all owe Tim Keller and TGC a great debt for the church finally recovering and meeting its long lost call. This is however NOT the Gospel delivered to the Apostles and the New Testament saints . It is something else- something classically deceptive, culturally driven and based on a multitude of ideologies antithetical to the true Gospel and the Word of God.

The question that remains unanswered is  ”will the people of the PCA and SBC whose churches and pastors have come under the sway of Keller and his multitude of errors – follow Keller and his minions into ruins of shipwrecked apostates who have gone before or will they awaken and rid their churches and denominations before it is too late?”

1 Timothy 4 (NKJV)

The Great Apostasy

Now the Spirit [a]expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron.

2 TIMOTHY 4

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.

 

NOW KELLER AND REDEEMER HAVE SET THEIR SITES ON PARTNERING WITH THE APA . INTERFAITH FUNDING ,AND THE MORMON CHURCH TO GIVE AN OVERHAUL TO CHRISTIAN COUNSELING.

Flush with millions from the Interfaith driven grant funding of The Templeton Foundation, Keller and his Redeemer City Counseling Department have set out to “influence Christian Counseling” through partnering with an institution (the APA) antithetical the Christianity but interested in “Spirituality” and another religion (Brigham Young University of the Mormon, LDS faith). The research project is touted to be the largest such effort ever undertaken.

https://counseling.redeemer.com/standalone_pages/redeemer_counseling_research_fund

“Redeemer Counseling Services has been committed to conducting research since 2012. Our first project by Dr. Tracy Prout was an outcome study that assessed spirituality and its influence on the therapeutic alliance. Since then, Dr. Judy Cha and Elena E. Kim have also conducted qualitative studies to examine the effects of God Image and the mechanism of spirituality on the client’s psychotherapeutic experience. “

Keller boast in the short video linked above that “Redeemer Counseling has been given the chance to change the field of psychology …with the gospel” Elena Kim is the lead investigator with the Templeton funded project. Kim says” historically the fields of religion and psychology were not receptive to each other but there has been a recent focus on spiritually in psychology which has created a window of opportunity and the John Templeton Foundation intends to take advantage of this opportunity”. Judy Cha the Director of Redeemers Counseling Center says “millions of dollars have been set aside to BRIDGE (The BYU program name) to counselors (Cha) Clergy (Keller) and Researchers (Kim) with the goal to bring spiritually orientated psychotherapy into mainstream healthcare.”  “Your involvement”, says Keller, “can allow Christianity to influence the field of psychology at a vast cultural level.” We, the church, are urged to join them in their “historical endeavor to bridge Christianity and psychology.”

Never mind the atheistic roots of psychology, the bland universalism of the spirituality being espoused and the interfaith application of the funding research and outcomes. Redeemers team are proud to be working with experts in the field who are of the APA partnered project , headquartered at BYU and of and with the Mormon Religion and yet call their mutual work a “validation of Christian integrated psychotherapy” Thus Keller is illustrating again the lack of care or discernment for the conservative Reformed theology Keller has wrapped himself and his ministry / TGC in. Keller’s PCA credentials are often all he needs to retain respectability and acceptance among many Biblical evangelicals .

Grants & Awards

Kim, E. E., Chen, E. C., Cha J., Keller T. (2017). “Empirical validation of a Christian-integrated psychotherapy framework: A task analysis.” John Templeton Foundation and Brigham Young University.

The work is also deeply  partnered with the APA as indicated by their presentations .

Presentations

Kim, E. E., Chen, E. C., & Brachfeld, C. (2016, August). Patients’ experiences of spirituality in psychotherapy: A grounded theory analysis. In P. S. Richards & J. N. Nelson (Co-Chairs), Spiritually oriented psychotherapy: Processes, outcomes, and research challenges. Symposium presentation proposal submitted for the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Denver, CO.

Prout, T.A., & Kim, E.E., (2015, August). Christian Counseling: Initial Report on A Large-Scale Study. Presentation at the American Psychological Association Convention, Toronto, Canada.

Prout, T.A., & Kim, E.E., (2014, August). Therapeutic Alliance, Client-Therapist Match, and Outcomes in Christian Counseling. Presentation at the American Psychological Association Convention, Washington, D.C.

BRIDGES PROJECT DISCUSSED IN REDEEMER VIDEO PARTNERS WITH BRIGHAM YOUNG UNIVERSITY

 

http://www.bridgesconsortium.net/grant-projects/

 

Templeton funding March 2017- March 2020

https://www.templeton.org/grant/enhancing-practice-based-evidence-for-spiritually-integrated-psychotherapies-an-interdisciplinary-big-data-project

Grant total – $3,572,011

“For most of the 20th century, mainstream healthcare professionals ignored the role of spirituality in therapeutic healing. Recently this has changed as scholars and practitioners have described many spiritual treatment approaches, grounded in the healing practices of both Western and Eastern spiritual traditions (e.g., prayer, meditation, gratitude, love, forgiveness, altruistic service). Although some research supports these approaches there are weaknesses with the database. Without a more satisfactory research base, spiritual approaches will remain at the fringes of the mental health and medical fields, which will deprive many people of access to sensitive and effective services. The long-term aim of our project is to create an international, interdisciplinary network of researchers and practitioners dedicated to advancing research and practice in this domain of mental healthcare. “

“Funding from the Templeton Foundation for this project will enable us to attract research teams and treatment sites from around the world to collaborate in creating the largest and richest data set in existence about spiritually integrated treatment approaches. Our research and network of collaborators will help ensure that religious and spiritual resources for therapeutic change are never again neglected in the healthcare professions. Spiritually committed people throughout the world will have greater access to mental health services that are effective and that honor the healing resources of their spiritual worldviews and communities.”

Earlier grant

$207,440.

https://www.templeton.org/grant/bringing-spiritually-oriented-psychotherapies-into-the-healthcare-mainstream-a-preparatory-grant-proposal-for-an-international-grant-competition-2

The director, co-director, project manager and both additional leaders in the Bridge project are from the Mormon Church -Brigham Young University.

Phillip Scott Richards of Brigham Young is project  Director .

https://centerforchange.com/staff/p-scott-richards-phd/

Daniel Judd is an expert of “ancient scripture” and the Book of Mormon .

https://religion.byu.edu/daniel_judd

“Bio: Daniel K Judd received an M.S. degree in family science and a Ph.D. in counseling psychology from Brigham Young University.  He has been a seminary and institute instructor in Utah, Arizona, and Michigan, and he was a professor of family science at BYU-Idaho.  Presently Chair of the Ancient Scripture Department at BYU, he has published several articles on religious and mental health issues.  He and his wife, Kaye Seegmiller Judd, have four children and reside in Orem, Utah.

Courses Taught: Book of Mormon, New Testament, LDS Marriage and Family

Areas of Expertise: Religion and Mental Health; Marriage and Family

Areas of Research: Doctrinal perspectives on current issues; Philosophy and psychology of Religion; Marriage and Family”

CONCLUSION -KELLER’S REDEEMER COUNSELING EXPECTS ORDER OUT OF CHAOS AS AN OUTCOME FOR HIS COMPROMISED INVOLVEMENT.

Is Tim Keller able to discern the fundamentally flawed approach in the partnership his Redeemer Counseling Center is undertaking ?  Keller says his ministry is “engaging to influence the field of psychology with Christianity “. So again, how is he going about this?  According to his own website, Keller’s team is working as part of a broad effort using the funding providing by the Templeton Foundation to collaborate with research in order to “merge psychology and Christianity.”

Also -again, how does Keller expect that to happen? How does Tim Keller, co-founder  of The Gospel Coalition and who is licensed to ministry by the reformed/ conservative / theologically driven Presbyterian Church of America intend to bring about this outcome?

By

1.Partnering with grant funding provided by an interfaith universalist program focused on a

A totally new age /generic brand of spirituality.

  1. By aligning with and yoking to a historically anti Gospel organization driving much of the

pro homosexual and redefining marriage movement now focused on “spirituality”.

  1. By collaborating with a cult religion with a history of polygamy, abuse, and corruption and

which adheres to its own religious text which it claims as a third testament of the Bible.

Tim Keller is either a fool on a fool’s errand who understands nothing about the Gospel or orthodox theology he espouses -or he is wolf in sheep’s clothing who cares nothing for the Gospel or orthodox theology he espouses. Either one of the above or a mingled mixture of the two disqualify Keller for consideration as a trustworthy leader in Evangelical Christianity today.

  Matthew 16:11-12 (NKJV)

11 How is it you do not understand that I did not speak to you concerning bread?—but to beware of the [a]leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”12 Then they understood that He did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the [b]doctrine of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

Acts 20:28-30  (NKJV)

28 Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church [a]of God which He purchased with His own blood. 29 For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking [b]perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves.

2 Peter 3:14-18 (NKJV)

14 Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless; 15 and consider thatthe longsuffering of our Lord is salvation—as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, has written to you, 16 as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which untaught and unstable people twist to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures.

17 You therefore, beloved, since you know this beforehand, beware lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the error of the wicked; 18 but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

 

1 John 4:1-6 (NKJV)

Love for God and One Another

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess [a]that Jesus [b]Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world.

You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. They are of the world. Therefore they speak as of the world, and the world hears them. We are of God. He who knows God hears us; he who is not of God does not hear us. By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

via TIM KELLER PARTNERS WITH INTERFAITH FUNDING,APA SPIRITUALITY,AND THE MORMON RELIGION TO “CHRISTIANIZE PSYCHOLOGICAL COUNSELING “ — thirtypiecesofsilverdotorg

The Importance of Getting History Right

There are so many inaccuracies and outright lies out there. These history myths need to be debunked for good.

There is a famous quote from George Orwell’s 1984:

Who controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past.

The vastness of that insight cannot be overstated.  As an amateur historian, I cringe at the outright lies being fed to the public, some of it by people who know they are lying.  Others do it unaware.  Unless these lies are addressed, political solutions to many of the world’s problems will prove impossible.

Let’s start with a common innocuous lie.

The story of Granada is all about the Islamic Moors. In year 711, these North African Muslims crossed the straits of Gibraltar and quickly conquered the entire Iberian Peninsula, eventually converting most of its habitants. Throughout the Middle Ages, for over seven hundred years, Spain was a predominantly Muslim society, living under Muslim rule.

Now, I do not believe that Rick Steves had sinister motives.  He either was rolling out what he thought was true, or had been misinformed by some poorly written tourist pamphlet.  But that small quote is a sample of popular “history” at its absolute worst.

1. The Muslims did not conquer all of the Iberian Peninsula.  The northern coast of Spain (Asturias, Cantabria, Galicia, the Basque country) never really fell.  The Moors tried to collect taxes – and some blonde virgins – which almost immediately resulted in revolts.  By 739, Pelayo had secured an independent state in the north.

2. The Spanish, in the main, never converted.  They were treated as dhimmis; the population, for the most part, remained Christian

3. The Muslim rulers were usually a small minority elite.

4. And 700 years of Muslim rule?  There was a slow but steady erosion of Muslim rule throughout the whole period.  By 1236, Cordoba had fallen into Christian hands, and two thirds of the peninsula was Christian.  Granada became a vassal state of the Christian north and was tolerated only become of the tribute it paid.  The Moors were totally driven out of Portugal by 1249 with the conquest of the Algarve.

The sanitized version of Muslim Spain’s history ignores the second wave of Muslim rule, the Almohad takeover of the Muslim areas (in the south only) during the 12th century.  The Almohads were the 12th-century equivalent of ISIS.  They tried to forced urbanized Jews and Christians to convert, but their rule was brief.  Many Christians and Jews fled to the Christian north.  Christian military advances made the Almohad caliphate unstable.  In the 13th century, the Nasrids took over.

A lot of this false history is the result of the Black Legend: an exaggeration of the crimes of the Inquisition.  Europe’s Protestants and Jews understandably had an animus for Catholic Spain and allowed their own myopic views to gloss over the very real crimes of Islam.  The result is the idiocy we have today, where Muslim rule is often called the Golden Age of Spain.

Far from it!  It was a brutal tyranny, which oppressed the Christian majority.  Whatever the faults of Catholicism, the dark history of Muslim rule should not be sanitized.

The next lie – the one that may start a world war – is that Mohammed made a night journey to the Haram al-Sharif (the farthest mosque) in Jerusalem.

The problem is, there was no mosque in Jerusalem during Mohammed’s life.  He died five years before Islam entered into Jerusalem.  How could Mohammed have visited a mosque that did not exist?

This lie is peddled on the media as justification for Arab riots whenever some Jews want to walk on the Temple Mount.  Whether one agrees with Israeli practices or not, there is no doubt that Jews built a temple on that mount.  And there is equally no doubt that Mohammed never visited the place.

Worse yet, there is evidence that early Islam may have been centered in Petra in Jordan.  Mecca was not an important city in the 7th century.  All of Muslim history may be a total fabrication, and Mohammed, who may not have actually existed, is certainly not be the Mohammed of history.  In fact, it is beginning to look as if Islam was invented for political purposes.

Another lie, born of ignorance, is that the American revolution was merely a tax revolt.  The idea is to minimize our history down to financial considerations: dialectical materialism.

But anyone familiar with the Currency Act and the Intolerable Acts knows full well that more was at stake.  Many of the colonials were descended from people whose ancestors had suffered under British law and how it had reduced large sections of Ireland and some parts of Scotland to abject poverty.  They were determined not to become New World vassals.

But if one wants to minimize the treasure that is our Constitution, then reduce American history to tax law.

Unfortunately, the right can also falsify history.  Many of those who are sympathetic to the “Lost Cause” of the Confederacy had downplayed that many of the states’ articles of secession mentioned slavery as a primary cause for the rebellion.

The reason for this is that in the early 20th-century a number of major historians and social groups introduced a romantic view of the Confederacy into their histories.

The United Daughters of the Confederacy were once a powerful force in public education across the South, right down to rewriting history: slaves were happy, y’all.

I am not downplaying that the North could be duplicitous, but many in the South refuse to concede that the root cause of the problem was their “peculiar institution,” the very name indicating that they were embarrassed to admit it.  Who wants to admit that his uncle died defending the enslavement of other people?  I am no supporter of Antifa rioters, but Confederate history has been glossed over.

And then there is the history that I was taught about President Wilson as a kid.  He was a great reformer, who wanted world peace.  It turns out that he was a globalist and – yes, the left is right on this – a Southern racist, who resegregated the federal government and set back civil rights for decades.

In high school Spanish class, lo those many decades ago, I was taught about American “aggression” during the Mexican-American War.

The problem is:

1. Many Spanish Californios and Spanish Tejanos were already upset with the tyrannical government in Mexico City.  Had the U.S. not intervened, the British or French would have.

2. There were far more U.S. citizens in the Southwest at that time than Mexicans.  Mexico lost the territory because it had barely settled it and then ticked off the locals.

Again, I am not saying the U.S. government is 100% innocent, but true history gets rid of a lot of grievances by undercutting much of the premises for those grievances.

Some other quick history that infuriates me:

A. Those who call the French Latins – in reality the vast majority of the French are descended from Celtic tribes.  In the north, German Frankish and Viking Nordic elements were mixed in.  To be sure, there is an Italian element in the southeast and a Basque element in the southwest, but most of France was historically Celtic.  The Romans may have imposed a Latin tongue, but the French are Celts.

B. The use of the term “West Bank” – Judea and Samaria has been the historical term for three millennia.  The West Bank is a recent political term at best, meant to deny a Jewish history.  I am tired of how both sides want to deny the other side’s existence.

C. The Crusades were Western aggression – Actually, the Crusades were a response to centuries of Islamic aggression.  Unfortunately, the Crusaders lost in the East.

D. The neglect of Islamic tyranny – The reason the New World was discovered is because a vicious Islam had cut off the Silk Road to the East.  Europeans had to strike out in boats, the one technological advantage they had over the Muslims – hence the Portuguese circumnavigation of Africa and Spain’s subsidy of Columbus.

I once had a history teacher in college tell us that people are motivated by not truth, but rather what they believe is the truth.  He was right.

Mike Konrad is the pen name of an American who wishes he had availed himself more fully of the opportunity to learn Spanish better in high school, lo those many decades ago.  He runs a website, Latin Arabia, about the Christian Arab community in South America.

Source: The Importance of Getting History Right

DEBT: The Opium of The Fed’s Manipulated Economy

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• Ron Paul Liberty Report

Global debt has never been higher. It’s almost $250 Trillion. Obviously, the economic world that central banks have created are built on a house of sand. Central banks are socialistic institutions. They are monopolies created and sustained by governments. When the central banking house of cards comes down, it’ll be felt around the world. Ron Paul discusses on today’s Liberty Report!