Daily Archives: February 21, 2019

February 21 The Transforming Grace of God

Scripture Reading: 1 Timothy 1:8–17

Key Verse: Ephesians 1:7

In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.

Concerned about her salvation, the woman met with her pastor. “I don’t know how Jesus can accept me,” she cried. “I want to give my life to Him, but I’m not ready. You don’t know what I’ve done. Jesus can’t possibly forgive me.”

Feeling guilty about past wrongs is understandable. Sin is ugly in God’s eyes, but He took care of the problem on the cross. When you agree with God that your sin is wrong and accept Jesus’ payment in your place, you are freed by His blood—clean and righteous in God’s sight. No one is too wicked, too horrible, too unlovable, too vile for Jesus to love.

Paul, the missionary and apostle, said, “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, among whom I am foremost of all. And yet for this reason I found mercy, in order that in me as the foremost, Jesus Christ might demonstrate His perfect patience” (1 Tim. 1:15–16 nasb). One of the greatest evangelists of all time was once a vicious persecutor of Christians.

No matter what you have said or done, you can hold fast to this promise: “In Him [Jesus] we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace” (Eph. 1:7 nasb).

O God, I claim it! In Christ I have redemption—through His blood—the forgiveness of my trespasses, according to the riches of His grace.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (1999). On holy ground (p. 54). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

February 21 The Grid of the Word

Scripture reading: Colossians 1:3–13

Key verses: Psalm 119:167–68

My soul keeps Your testimonies,

And I love them exceedingly.

I keep Your precepts and Your testimonies,

For all my ways are before You.

The apostle Paul was in prison when he learned that the church in Colosse was in danger of falling into heresy. Doctrines were being taught that refuted the truth of the gospel message.

A combination of Eastern philosophy, Jewish legalism, and elements of Gnosticism was spreading rapidly. Gnostics, emphasizing knowledge rather than faith, believed they had special knowledge when it came to spiritual matters. The doctrine introduced to the Colossians was based on this man-made philosophy, not on the divine truth of God’s Word.

The heretics in Colosse denounced the person and work of Jesus Christ. They believed God responded only to perfection. In their eyes the human body was evil. Because Jesus came as a man, they were convinced He was only an emanation from God, not the Son of God in the flesh. Anytime we add or take away from the gospel message, we deviate from its foundational truth.

Similar problems face us today through the New Age movement and a number of religious cults. Therefore, it is extremely important that you run everything you hear through God’s grid system—His Word. If something does not bear witness to God’s Word, then it is not of Him, and you need to let it go.

Dear Lord, let me filter everything today through the grid system of Your Word. If it is not of You, then help me let it go.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (2000). Into His presence (p. 54). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

February 21, 2019 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report (US•World•Christian)

REUTERS

President Donald Trump on Thursday called on U.S. telecommunications companies to boost their work to build faster 5G wireless communications networks, saying they were lagging and at risk of being left behind other countries’ efforts.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence will fly to Bogota, Colombia on Monday to discuss the Venezuela crisis with leaders of the regional Lima Group of nations, his office said on Thursday.

The U.S. Department of Justice may announce as early as next week that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has given the attorney general his report on the federal Russia investigation, CNN said on Wednesday, citing unnamed sources.

The United States and China have started to outline commitments in principle on the stickiest issues in their trade dispute, marking the most significant progress yet toward ending a seven-month trade war, according to sources familiar with the negotiations.

Catalyst Pharmaceuticals Inc, targeted by U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders for its high drug prices, said on Thursday that prices of its treatment for a rare neurological disorder were “in line” with similar products in the industry. Sanders had earlier this month written to the Florida-based drug maker asking it to justify its $375,000-per-year price for Firdapse, a medication that for years has been available for free.

Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives plan to introduce a resolution on Friday to end President Donald Trump’s national emergency declaration on border security, according to aides to Representative Joaquin Castro.

A Polish charity helping victims of child abuse committed by Catholic priests accused 24 bishops on Thursday of concealing perpetrators of sexual molestation of minors.

The European Union should spend hundreds of billions of euros combating climate change during the next decade, its chief executive said on Thursday, responding to a Swedish teen who has inspired a global movement of children against global warming.

Two astronauts who survived a midair rocket failure in October said on Thursday they had received counseling following their brush with death and felt ready to fly again next month.

U.S. home sales fell in January to their lowest level in more than three years and house prices rose only modestly, suggesting a further loss of momentum in the housing market.

The number of Americans filing applications for unemployment benefits fell last week, but the four-week moving average rose to a more than one-year high, suggesting the labor market was slowing down. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 23,000 to a seasonally adjusted 216,000 for the week ended Feb. 16.

AP Top Stories

Two feet deep, below a plot of farmland outside the Syrian city of Raqa, lies a large and deadly legacy of the Islamic State group: a mass grave holding an estimated 3,500 people.

The head organizer of the Vatican’s sex abuse summit has met with an Irish activist who is seeking to draw attention to another issue the Vatican has long sought to keep quiet: the plight of children of priests.

An international rights group on Thursday accused Congolese police of summarily executing at least 27 people, some of whom were bound, strangled and mutilated in a crackdown on gangs in the capital Kinshasa last year.

Prime Minister Netanyahu forged an election alliance with a far-right party on Wednesday that could give followers of the late anti-Arab rabbi, Meir Kahane, a stronger voice in Israeli politics.

Australia’s first female foreign minister Julie Bishop announced she’ll quit parliament at the next election, joining an exodus of senior lawmakers from the country’s ruling coalition as it battles to retain office.

Venezuelan officials said Tuesday that the country is banning air and sea trips to and from three Dutch Caribbean islands – a region that has been linked to efforts to undermine President Nicolas Maduro by sending emergency aid to the South American nation.

BBC

A fast-moving fire swept through a historic district of Bangladesh’s capital, Dhaka, killing at least 78 people, officials said.

The world’s biggest bee has been re-discovered, after decades thought lost to science. The giant bee – which is as long as an adult’s thumb – was found on a little-explored Indonesian island.

A US Coast Guard officer was arrested on suspicion of planning a terror attack. Police found a cache of weapons and ammunition at the Maryland home of Christopher Hasson. The self-proclaimed white nationalist had drawn up a list of targets including Democratic politicians.

The US is rushing to transfer sensitive nuclear power technology to Saudi Arabia. A Democratic-led House panel has launched an inquiry over concerns about the White House plan to build nuclear reactors across the kingdom. Whistleblowers told the panel it could destabilize the Middle East by boosting nuclear weapons proliferation.

A German court has handed suspended jail terms to two ex-employees of gun maker Heckler & Koch and fined the firm $4.2m for illegal arms deliveries to Mexico.

Some reports suggest that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un could soon be making his way to Vietnam by train, for an upcoming summit with US leader Donald Trump.

Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic’s gay partner has given birth in what the PM’s office said was a first for a world leader.

WND

Perfect Day Foods is one company creating a synthetic milk alternative. It’s similar to milk in that it consists of casein and whey, the proteins found in milk. However, a cow was never used to produce their product. Instead, the animal-free dairy product is made in a lab using genetically engineered yeast programmed with DNA to produce the same proteins found in cow’s milk.


Mid-Day Snapshot · Feb. 21, 2019

The Foundation

“Nothing is more certain than that a general profligacy and corruption of manners make a people ripe for destruction.” —John Witherspoon (1776)

The Ugly Face of White Nationalism Is Identity Politics

Constitutional conservatism has always rejected this ploy in favor of Liberty for all.


Just How Far Left Are Democrats Going?

Gallup finds a stark and staggering leftward shift in the opinions of rank-and-file Democrats.


Amazon Illuminates the Democrat Party Divide

High-tax cronyists on one side, socialist “purists” on the other. Neither is good for business.


Higher Education? More Like Leftist Indoctrination

America’s colleges and universities are producing indoctrinated lemmings, not educated reasoning adults.


Greening of the Earth Enhanced by … India and China?

Over the last two decades, the earth has seen a big increase in area covered by green leaves.


The Coup Co-Conspirators

This conspiracy was a much more significant assault on our Constitution than Richard Nixon’s concealment of the DNC/Watergate burglary.


Powerlifter Lifts 2-Ton SUV Off Man Trapped Underneath

“I just lifted and started pushing the vehicle as hard as I could.”


Video: How Socialism Killed Venezuela

It meets all 10 of Karl Marx’s tenets of socialist government. Such planned economies fail.



Today’s Opinion

Victor Davis Hanson
Changing Reality With Words
Mona Charen
Unwarranted: Elizabeth Warren’s Flawed Idea
Larry Elder
Jussie Smollett Supporters: Rooting for a ‘Modern Lynching’
Edwin J. Feulner
‘Amazon Just Took Their Ball and Went Home’
Hans von Spakovsky
Birthright Citizenship Should End
For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.

Thursday Top Headline Summary

Smollett charged, U.S.-China trade-deal headwinds, surge in illegals, domestic terrorism, Syria withdrawal, and more.


Thursday Short Cuts

Friendly fire: “Overall I am not a supporter of the Green New Deal.” —Rep. Abigail Spanberger



Today’s Meme

For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.

Today’s Cartoon


News – 2/21/2019

Russia completes testing of ‘Poseidon’ thermonuclear torpedo
The 24 m long UUV armed with a nuclear warhead is designed to navigate autonomously with a maximum speed of 107 kt and detonate near an enemy coastal city, generating a tsunami wave, Russian state media reported.

Mystic Roots: Why does the U.S. President Trump Eat a Lot of Red Meat and Drink Coca Cola?
“The same people who cheered him on a few years ago are precisely the people who are most against him today. When Trump arose and made clear that he was going to be for Israel, to help the Moshiach come into the world, that caused a huge turmoil in the world specifically among his former friends,” Rabbi Fish explained. “He is, after all, just a president who will be gone in a few years. But people who fear the Moshiach went into a panic. They can tell that the day of reckoning is very near.”

First human gene therapy surgery attempts to halt common form of vision loss
“When the virus opens up inside the retinal cell it releases the DNA of the gene we have cloned, and the cell starts making a protein that we think can modify the disease, correcting the imbalance of the inflammation caused by the complement system.” The therapy involves surgically detaching the retina and directly delivering the viral solution to the back of the eye. This targeted approach ensures the treatment is contained to a single point, while the virus is also engineered to only infect specific retinal cells.

Concerned with Closer Turkish-Russian Ties, Trump Blocks F-35 Sale
U.S. President Donald Trump signed appropriations legislation late last week that blocks the sale of F-35 fighter jets to Turkey. The transfer of these fighter planes to Ankara will not proceed until the U.S. Secretary of State and U.S. Secretary of Defense provide an update to Congress related to Turkey’s purchase of the S-400 missile-defense system from Russia. Turkey’s acquisition of the S-400 missile systems from Moscow could enable Turkey’s potential ejection from the F-35 program, in addition to purchasing other weapons such as Lockheed’s F-16 fighter, UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters and Boeing’s CH-47F Chinook helicopter. “We will not stand idly by while NATO allies purchase weapons from our adversaries,”

When hypocrisy becomes anti-Semitism
The anti-Semitic tweet by US Congresswoman Ilhan Omar about the Israeli lobby AIPAC buying politicians with money continues to stir up a storm. It is interesting that Israel bothers her more than Somalia, where she was born and whence she fled. A massacre has been going in the African nation for dozens of years, primarily in the name of jihad.

Trump Demands $2.5Bn Back For California’s High-Speed Rail Fail; Pulls $929Mn Grant
The US Department of Transportation (DOT) says it is exploring legal options to claw back $2.5 billion from California in federal funds which have already been spent on the ill-fated statewide high-speed rail system, according to the New York Times. The Trump administration is also canceling a $929 million grant which was allocated to the California High-Speed Rail Authority detailed in a letter from DOT, just one week after California Governor Newsom announced that the project had been derailed by cost overruns and numerous delays.

Utah hit by 5th minor earthquake in 5 days
The fifth minor earthquake in five days rattled Utah just after midnight Wednesday — this one a magnitude 4 about five miles southwest of Kanosh in Millard County. There were no reports on damage in the sparsely populated area.

Iran launches large-scale maritime war games in the Persian Gulf
Velayat-97 will see the participation of submarines, warships, helicopters and surveillance planes as well as missile launches from the naval vessels.
With tensions high between Israel and Iran, the Islamic Republic began an annual week-long naval war games in the Persian Gulf and strategic Strait of Hormuz.

Trump envoy to ‘Post’: Antisemitism at its worst since Holocaust
The Jewish people are facing the worst wave of antisemitism since the Holocaust, Elan Carr, the Trump administration’s new special envoy to combat antisemitism, told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday. Carr was appointed Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism earlier this month after the post had been vacant for two years since Donald Trump became president in 2016.

Bangladesh fire: Blaze kills dozens in Dhaka historic district
A fast-moving fire swept through a historic district of Bangladesh’s capital, Dhaka, killing at least 78 people, officials say. The blaze broke out at night in a residential building that had flammable material stored on the ground floor. Members of a bridal party are thought to be among the victims. It is not yet clear what started the fire.

Pope Francis: Concrete action needed against child abuse at Church
Pope Francis has said the world expects “concrete measures” to tackle child sexual abuse by priests and not only “simple and obvious condemnations”. At a summit to discuss the scandals that have rocked the Roman Catholic Church, he said “the cry of the little ones seeking justice” had to be heard. Details of sexual abuse have emerged across the world and the Church has been accused of covering up crimes.

Israel elections: Netanyahu challengers Gantz and Lapid join forces
Two of Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s strongest challengers in April elections have announced a centrist alliance in a bid to defeat him. Ex-army chief Benny Gantz and centrist politician Yair Lapid agreed to rotate as prime minister if they win. Separately, Mr Netanyahu forged an alliance with several far-right parties to try to shore up votes.

Feds: Coast Guard lieutenant compiled hit list of lawmakers
A Coast Guard lieutenant who was arrested last week is a “domestic terrorist” who drafted an email discussing biological attacks and had what appeared to be a hit list that included prominent Democrats and media figures, prosecutors said in court papers. Christopher Paul Hasson is due to appear Thursday in federal court in Maryland after his arrest on gun and drug offenses, but prosecutors say those charges are the “proverbial tip of the iceberg.”

EU countries back copyright reforms aimed at Google, Facebook
European Union countries on Wednesday endorsed an overhaul of the bloc’s copyright rules which would force Google and Facebook Inc to pay publishers for news snippets and filter out copyright-protected content on YouTube or Instagram. A majority of EU diplomats agreed to the revamp while Finland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Poland refused to back the deal and two other EU countries abstained.

Putin to U.S.: I’m ready for another Cuban Missile crisis if you want one
President Vladimir Putin has said that Russia is militarily ready for a Cuban Missile-style crisis if the United States is foolish enough to want one and that his country currently has the edge when it comes to a first nuclear strike. The Cuban Missile Crisis erupted in 1962 when Moscow responded to a U.S. missile deployment in Turkey by sending ballistic missiles to Cuba, sparking a standoff that brought the world to the brink of nuclear war.

Scientists Release Controversial Genetically Modified Mosquitoes In High-Security Lab
Scientists have launched a major new phase in the testing of a controversial genetically modified organism: a mosquito designed to quickly spread a genetic mutation lethal to its own species, NPR has learned. For the first time, researchers have begun large-scale releases of the engineered insects, into a high-security laboratory in Terni, Italy.

US debt hits record under Trump, Republicans mum
More massive than the US economy, the national debt hit a new record of $22 trillion under President Donald Trump but Republicans who traditionally rail against debt and deficits have remained mum. The sum of borrowing to cover chronic deficits as well as growing interest payments, this mountain of debt already stood at $19.95 trillion when Trump entered the White House, reaching the equivalent of US GDP for the first time since World War II.

‘Xi cult’ app is China’s red hot hit
A propaganda app that puts China’s powerful President Xi Jinping in anyone’s pockets has become a hit in the country — with a helpful nudge from Communist Party officials. Millions have downloaded the app, which tracks the amount of time users spend browsing inspirational quotes from the Chinese leader and watching short videos of his speeches and travels.


Headlines – 2/21/2019

Netanyahu puts off meeting with Putin as he pushes for right-wing unity deal

Likud: Gantz and Lapid will usher in ‘leftist’ government ‘backed by Arabs’

UN envoy says risk of Israeli-Palestinian war looms large

Multiple arson balloons launched from Gaza; IDF hits Hamas post in response

Israel Attacks Hamas Following Airborne Firebomb From Gaza

Hamas claims credit as head of elite IDF unit steps down after Gaza raid

Tires slashed, graffiti daubed in apparent hate crime in Palestinian village

IDF arrests 17 Palestinians, clash with rioters in West Bank raids

France’s Jewish Community Looks to Macron for Answers After Series of anti-Semitic Crimes

Anti-Semitism worst since WWII, Macron tells French Jewish group

President Macron: France To Define Anti-Zionism As A Form Of Anti-Semitism

Netanyahu highlights Israel’s technological prowess at friendly President’s Conference

Israel unveils Rafael’s new advanced bunker buster missile, ‘Rocks’

Europe: Trying to Legitimize Iran’s Regime

German president lauds Iran on revolution that seeks Israel’s destruction

Iran says it cannot rule out possibility of war with Israel

Iran’s Rouhani says U.S. sanctions are ‘terrorist act’

Democratic Party passes resolution calling for US to re-enter Iran nuke deal

Iran’s Zarif Slams U.S. ‘Hypocrisy’ Over Saudi Nuclear Plan

Despite the slaughter in Yemen, Britain is still chasing arms sales

Amid the fallout with Turkey, Trump signs legislation blocking transfer of F-35 fighter jets

Muslim group seeks congressional probe on US terror watchlist

Endgame for the Isis ‘caliphate’ looms in small Syrian town

Islamic State group: Civilians evacuated from last Syria enclave

Blame for mass rapes points to S. Sudan army: UN report

India demands Pakistan take action and ‘stop misleading’ on Kashmir attack

Putin promises Russians better living conditions ‘within this year’

Russia bans soldiers from using smartphones to prevent tracking of military

Putin: US using ‘far-fetched accusations’ to quit arms deal

Russian President Vladimir Putin Threatens to Retaliate if U.S. Deploys New Missiles in Europe

Putin warns new missiles could target ‘decision-making centers’

Possible peace declaration looms large over Trump-Kim summit

China’s social credit system shows its teeth, banning millions from taking flights, trains

EU countries back copyright reforms aimed at Google, Facebook

Arrested Coast Guard Officer Planned Mass Terrorist Attack ‘On A Scale Rarely Seen’

‘I am dreaming of a way to kill almost every last person on earth’: A self-proclaimed white nationalist planned a mass terrorist attack, the government says

Feds: Coast Guard lieutenant compiled hit list of lawmakers

Number of active hate groups in US at record high, civil rights watchdog says

Pelosi urges support for resolution to block border wall emergency

Judge Andrew Napolitano: Trump’s brazen, unconstitutional overreach

Up to 15 British ministers may vote to stop UK from leaving EU on March 29

US and China are said to be outlining deal to end trade war

The Fed just said it contributed to the stock market’s wild ride in December

US debt hits record under Trump, Republicans mum

US says it will deliver aid blocked by Venezuela, setting up confrontation with Maduro regime

Venezuela seeks UN support against ‘military aggression’

Venezuela gets fuel from Russia, Europe but the bill soars

Oil hovers near 2019 highs amid OPEC cuts, but economic slowdown weighs

Scientists Warn Trump’s Space Force Could incentivize Nations To Build Space Weapons: ‘A Profoundly Bad Idea’

5.6 magnitude earthquake hits near Ndoi Island, Fiji

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Ezine, Turkey

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Haswayn, Yemen

Reventador volcano in Ecuador erupts to 16,000ft

Planchon Peteroa volcano in Peru erupts to 15,000ft

Mt Etna volcano in Italy erupts to 15,000ft

Sheveluch volcano on Kamchatka, Russia erupts to 15,000ft

Karymsky volcano on Kamchatka, Russia erupts to 12,000ft

New York City Admits Defrauding FEMA Out Of Millions After Superstorm Sandy

Snow falls in Las Vegas for the second time in a week

Climate Change Doubter Is Leading Effort to Advise President Trump on Climate Security

Scientists Release Controversial Genetically Modified Mosquitoes In High-Security Lab

Anti-vaxx propaganda has gone viral on Facebook. Pinterest has a cure

Pinterest Temporarily Blocks All Vaccine Content (Factual and Otherwise)

Measles vaccine opponents take fight to the state capital in wake of new bill

FDA chief says feds might intervene if states continue allowing vaccine exemptions

More than 130 dead in measles outbreak blamed on Philippine anti-vax movement

Stressed out: Anxiety a bigger concern for teens than drugs, poverty

IDF: Women soldiers to have free access to ‘morning after’ pills

Serbian PM’s same-sex partner gives birth to baby boy

Taiwan government to unveil draft same-sex marriage law

Tax service turns away gay couple, citing Indiana’s ‘religious freedom’ law

On YouTube, a network of paedophiles is hiding in plain sight

‘The pope ignored them’: Alleged abuse of deaf children on 2 continents points to Vatican failings

Pope says church’s attackers are linked to devil


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Chicago Police Superintendent Blasts Democrat Politicians, Celebrities and Fake News Pundits For Pushing Smollett Hoax (VIDEO) — The Gateway Pundit

Chicago Police held a press conference Thursday morning on the Jussie Smollett hate hoax after the actor’s arrest.

The Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said he’s “offended and angry” over Jussie Smollett’s hate hoax crime while he delivered an emotional press conference.

Mr. Johnson blasted Smollett’s staged attack as “shameful” then ripped into the Democrat politicians, celebrities and fake news pundits who all pushed the Jussie Smollett hoax whilst attacking millions of “racist” Trump supporters — all without any evidence a crime actually occurred.

“This publicity stunt was a scar that Chicago didn’t earn and certainly did not deserve,” Mr. Johnson said, adding, “To make things worse, the accusations within this phony attack received national attention for weeks. Celebrities, news commentators and even presidential candidates weighed in on something that was choreographed by an actor.”

“The stunt was orchestrated by Smollett because he was dissatisfied with his salary,” Superintendent Johnson added.

VIDEO:

2020 Dem hopefuls Sen. Cory Booker and Sen. Kamala Harris both immediately rushed to judgment after Jussie Smollett claimed white racist Trump supporters ambushed him with bleach and a noose.

Cory Booker called Smollett’s hate hoax a “modern-day lynching.”

Celebrities such as Alyssa Milano jumped into the mix and slammed Trump supporters following the hate hoax.

The Democrats and media have fallen for two huge hoaxes this year, Covington and now Smollett —  and it’s only February.

via Chicago Police Superintendent Blasts Democrat Politicians, Celebrities and Fake News Pundits For Pushing Smollett Hoax (VIDEO) — The Gateway Pundit

February 21, 2019 Afternoon Verse Of The Day

The Appeal

So speak and so act as those who are to be judged by the law of liberty. For judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy; mercy triumphs over judgment. (2:12–13)

Because partiality is such a serious sin, James closes this section with an appeal for believers to fully consider the danger of divine judgment. And the obvious implication is for them to then forsake the sin of partiality, asking the Lord’s forgiveness and cleansing.

The admonition to speak and so act as those who are to be judged by the law of liberty is tantamount to saying, “Live and act as a true believer who has been saved by God’s grace and who will be judged on the basis of Christ’s imputed righteousness. That righteousness frees the believer from the law of bondage and judges him under the redeeming law of liberty, God’s Word of the gospel, the New Testament in Jesus Christ, which frees the repentant sinner from the bondage of sin (cf. John 8:31–32).

God “will render to each person according to his deeds,” Paul declares,

to those who by perseverance in doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life; but to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation. There will be tribulation and distress for every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek, but glory and honor and peace to everyone who does good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For there is no partiality with God. (Rom. 2:6–11)

One of James’s major themes is that a person’s real faith will be manifest in and through his works, “for just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead” (2:26). If God looks at our life and sees that we have handled trials and temptations in a godly way, that we received and obeyed His Word, and that we have not lived a life of favoritism, that will be evidence of our salvation. Paul states unequivocally that “we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them” (Eph. 2:10). Good works cannot produce redemption; but genuine redemption produces obedient and holy living that will be characterized by good works. Living faith will be demonstrated by a holy life.

The gospel is the law of liberty because it frees those who place their faith in Jesus Christ from the bondage, judgment, and punishment of sin and brings them ultimately to eternal freedom and glory. It liberates us sinners from falsehood and deception and from the curses of death and hell. Even more marvelously, it frees us to obey and serve God, to live faithfully and righteously according to His Word and by the power of His indwelling Spirit. And it frees us to follow our Lord willingly out of love rather than reluctantly out of fear. In every sense, it is the “royal law” of God (v. 8), the divine and wondrous law of liberty.

As a further word of warning, James says that judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy. In this context, the one who has shown no mercy obviously refers to unbelievers. Their lives are characterized by partiality, hardness, selfishness, and lack of concern for others—in short, lovelessness. They are far from loving others as they love themselves, reflecting nothing of God’s love and care for those in need. They will not be blessed or receive mercy, for they have not been merciful (Matt. 5:7).

When a man lives without mercy to others in God’s world, he simply shows off the fact that he himself has never responded aright to the immeasurable mercy of God. The mercy a man has shown others as fruit of a life touched by God’s saving mercy will triumph over judgment. His own sins, worthy of judgment, are removed by God’s working in his life, dissolving all the charges strict justice might bring against him. Thus his showing of mercy is not a matter of heaping up personal merit to deserve salvation by his own good works. The mercy he shows is itself a work of God for which he can take no credit.

James brings us to the climax of his great argument. Partiality is inconsistent with the Christian faith because the Christian faith is consistent with the nature of God—and God is wholly impartial. Partiality is inconsistent with the purpose and the plan of God in choosing the poor of this world to be spiritually rich. Partiality is inconsistent with loving your neighbor as yourself. Even if it were the only sin a person ever committed, partiality, like all other sins, shatters the entire law of God and makes a person a transgressor, condemned to hell forever. If you come before the judgment seat of God and He sees that you have lived a life that is merciful to others, He will show mercy to you, because your mercy will testify to your saving faith. It will be true in your case that mercy triumphs over judgment. Contrarily, a person who has lived a life devoid of mercy to others will show himself to be without saving faith.[1]


Judgment and Mercy (2:12–13)

James heightens the issue by reminding his readers that they will “be judged by the law that gives freedom.” Further, “judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful.” We should “speak and act” accordingly (James 2:12–13).

The phrase “speak and act” reminds us of the call to be doers of the word (1:22–25). Judgment is certain and will occur on that basis. Judgment is near (5:8) in the sense that it will surely happen.

The law will be our judge. Why? Above all, because God gave the law. To break the law is to contradict God’s will. Moreover, when we break the law we fail to act like his children. We neither walk in his ways nor imitate him.

This is tragic, because the law gives freedom. Many regard the law as a restriction, since it forbids their doing whatever they please. But there is a freedom that enslaves. We may be free to take cocaine, but cocaine enslaves its users by addiction. We may be free to divorce a spouse. But divorce very often binds people to loneliness and poverty. We may be free to experiment sexually, but such freedom enslaves us to a life of lust and shallow, broken relationships.

Beyond these temporal troubles, sin leads to judgment. When James first mentions mercy in 2:13, he hints that he still has in mind sins against the poor, who need mercy. If we favor the rich, we extend no mercy to the poor. Next, James mentions the need to feed and clothe the poor. All who claim to believe must show mercy, or they will face judgment (2:14–17).

This stings. The depth of these demands could drive disciples to despair. Render complete obedience, James declares, or you render nothing. What shall we say? We follow the logic: believers must obey God’s laws because they are God’s laws. But when James says, “Judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful,” the gospel seems to be missing. The Sovereign commands that we show mercy, but where is his mercy? James is ready with his answer: “Mercy triumphs over judgment.” This is a short, undeveloped burst; James will present more of his gospel in chapter 4.

“Mercy triumphs over judgment” has been understood two ways. It may refer to human mercy. That is, disciples will act in mercy after all, so that human mercy will win the day! But this seems unlikely. James hardly seems optimistic about human goodness. Indeed, James 2:1–7 shows that we fail the tests of true religion.

The second explanation of “Mercy triumphs over judgment” asserts that the mercy is God’s. Though James has not been thinking of mercy, it seems that he simply cannot end by declaring judgment “without mercy” (2:13). He does not explain, at this moment, how mercy triumphs over judgment. But he is speaking to believers. We know that mercy triumphs by a simple yet profound process. First, we recognize our sins and repent, grieving over them and intending, by God’s grace, to abandon them. James says, “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up” (4:10). Second, we turn to Jesus as he is offered in the gospel, knowing that “he was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification” (Rom. 4:25). Believers fail, yet by their faith in the Redeemer, God’s mercy to his children triumphs over the judgment we deserve. In Christ, mercy triumphs.

When a true believer strives to obey and fails, the final word is still grace. For that reason, a sinning, failing Christian never despairs, never descends into self-recrimination. Through Christ, we are united to the triune God. The one who demands mercy shows mercy. For disciples, God’s mercy is always his last word.

Taking Mercy Home

Of course, Scripture teaches us to ask for mercy. It commands us to pray for forgiveness every day, since, unless we are comatose, we sin every day. But it can be difficult to repent. God’s mercy does not depend on our ability to request it properly. Nonetheless, we will be healthier if we know how correctly to face our sin. Indeed, we can respond to our sin in several ways, and not all of them involve repentance.

  • We can excuse our sin, especially by blaming others. If we get angry, someone provoked us. If we fail, someone tempted us. We even blame God for our sins. James says: “When tempted, no one should say,‘God is tempting me.’ ” For God does not tempt anyone. Rather, our own evil desires entice us (James 1:13–14).
  • We can deny our sin. We redefine our actions so they sound better. You know the scene: Two people are arguing and someone says, “Will you two stop bickering?” The disputants then reply, “We’re not arguing, we’re having an animated discussion.” Unrepentant people never shout, they just make their points emphatically. They don’t steal, they borrow things indefinitely and without permission. If anyone points out their sin, that person is judgmental and her standards are too high.
  • We can succumb to our shame. We can collapse in despair, guilt, and self-recrimination. We can give up and fall deeper into sin, thinking effort is futile.
  • Or we can resolve to try harder. We can stir ourselves with grim resolve and vows of self-reformation. We can redouble our efforts until we collapse in failure and shame again, days or weeks later.
  • Or we can take the sin to God and plead for mercy. The guilt-stricken man asks, “Will God forgive when I commit the same sin yet again?” And Jesus and the gospel say, “Yes.” Remember the Lord’s prayer. If we can ask for bread daily, we can ask for forgiveness daily.

James 2 stings the complacent believer with several sharp warnings about sin. First, even a “small,” common, all-but-invisible sin such as favoritism has large consequences; by it we fail the tests of true religion. Second, we have no right to pick and choose among God’s commands. If we reject a command because it is unpalatable, we have rejected the Lord who gave that law. These are serious matters. Still, God’s grace is greater than our sin. The gospel goes to sinners, to the unworthy, to the poor in spirit. The Lord is pleased when we obey, yet for all who repent and believe, he loves and forgives even when we fail him.[2]


13. For he shall have judgment. This is an application of the last verse to the subject in hand, which confirms altogether the second explanation which I have mentioned: for he shews, that since we stand through God’s mercy alone, we ought to shew that to those whom the Lord himself commends to us.

It is, indeed, a singular commendation of kindness and benevolence, that God promises that he will be merciful to us, if we be so to our brethren: not that our mercy, however great it may be, shewn towards men, merits the mercy of God; but that God would have those whom he has adopted, as he is to them a kind and an indulgent Father, to bear and exhibit his image on the earth, according to the saying of Christ, “Be ye merciful, as your heavenly Father is merciful.” (Matt. 5:7.) We must notice, on the other hand, that he could denounce nothing on them more severe or more dreadful than the judgment of God. It hence follows, that all they are miserable and lost who flee not to the asylum of pardon.

And mercy rejoiceth. As though he had said, “God’s mercy alone is that which delivers us from the dread and terror of judgment.” He takes rejoicing or glorying in the sense of being victorious or triumphant; for the judgment of condemnation is suspended over the whole world, and nothing but mercy can bring relief.

Hard and forced is the explanation of those who regard mercy as put here for the person, for man cannot properly be said to rejoice or glory against the judgment of God; but mercy itself in a manner triumphs, and alone reigns when the severity of judgment gives way; though I do not deny but that hence arises confidence in rejoicing, that is, when the faithful know that the wrath of God in a manner yields to mercy, so that being relieved by the latter, they are not overwhelmed by the former.[3]


So Speak and So Act as One Being Judged by the Law of Liberty (2:12–13)

12–13 James concludes the unit, as he started it, with an exhortation: “Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom.” Yet at the same time, 2:12–13 forms another key transition in the structure of the book and works with the reference to the law and judging at 4:11–12 to bracket the heart of the letter. Here James highlights that the law of love involves both right speaking and right acting. This twin approach to righteous living, speaking and acting, is seen in Leviticus 19:9–18, which, as already noted, has a significant influence on James, as well as on the teaching of Jesus (see, e.g., Mt 5:21–48; 25:31–45). If interpersonal relationships within the community of faith are to be healthy, right speaking and right acting must be embraced. The law of freedom, as noted at 1:25, is the divine ethic of love, taken up and reaffirmed by Jesus, as central to a life lived effectively for God. It is, therefore, God’s law that sets the standard by which the actions of all individuals will be assessed. Therefore, the one who breaks God’s law (such as that delineated in Lev 19:9–18), demonstrating a lack of love and mercy, will be judged mercilessly, perhaps echoing the implication of Jesus’ words, “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy” (Mt 5:7). Earlier in the passage James has shown favoritism to be a form of evil judgment (v. 4). Thus the tables are turned, the judges standing before God as Judge! The concluding statement, “mercy triumphs over judgment,” perhaps means that a life of mercy diffuses such a judgment.[4]


Favouritism indicates an unmerciful spirit (v. 13)

No, James was not suggesting for a single minute that we can secure salvation for ourselves by showing mercy to the poor and needy. He was much too good a theologian for that!

We are saved only by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ. But those who are truly saved cannot live as if they have never been touched by the mercy and grace of God. Those who know mercy cannot withhold it from others.

Curtis Vaughan offers this good summary of James’s teaching:

James surely does not mean that by showing mercy to man we procure mercy from God. That would make salvation a matter of human merit and would contradict the whole tenor of Scripture.

What James means is that by failing to show compassion on our fellow men we prove ourselves to be utterly devoid of Christian character. Christian people are the children of God. They bear His image; they copy His example. It is therefore impossible for them to fail to share in His compassion, to fail to reflect His spirit of mercy.

Those who have truly been saved will give evidence of the merciful character of the God who saved them. As they give that evidence, they will assure themselves that they truly have been saved and, therefore, have nothing to fear on the Day of Judgement. ‘Mercy triumphs over judgment’ (v. 13).[5]


2:13 / To back up this argument from scripture (i.e., because) and to begin to shift the focus to the next section, James adds a proverbial saying: judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. God is merciful, as any reader of the Old Testament should know. Exodus 34:5–6 states that when God revealed to Moses his nature and pronounced his name he described himself as “the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness” (cf. Deut. 4:31; Ps. 103:8–14, which connects this to his judging “in favor of the oppressed”). If this is God’s personal standard of righteousness, then it follows that his true followers should copy him. “He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8, cf. Hos. 4:1; 6:6; 12:6; Prov. 14:21; Dan. 4:27). Or again, “This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another.’ ” (Zech. 7:9). Not to show mercy is to step outside of God’s covenant and to invite God in return to judge by the same strict standard.

This teaching was made even more explicit in the intertestamental and rabbinic periods. Sirach states, “Does [a person] have no mercy toward a man like himself and yet pray for his own sins?” (Sirach 28:4; cf. 27:30–28:7; Tobit 4:9–11; Testament of Zebulun 8:8), and “Rabbi Barabbi said, ‘To him who is merciful to the created, Heaven is merciful, but to him who is unmerciful to the created, Heaven is also unmerciful’ ” (b. Shabbath 151b).

Jesus taught, “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy” (Matt. 5:7). This is underlined in his teaching on forgiveness (Matt. 6:14–15), his response to the Pharisees (Matt. 12:7, quoting Hos. 6:6), his parable on forgiveness (Matt. 18:21–35), and his parable of the sheep and the goats (Matt. 25:31–46). Therefore it is the unified witness of the Gospels that Jesus followed standard Jewish teaching and taught that God would show mercy only to those obeying him and doing likewise.

James’ use of this saying shows that he had learned Jesus’ tradition carefully, for it becomes his clinching argument. Even if the logical and biblical arguments have not convinced the reader that justice and love demand that the poor be treated honorably, then the Christian must still honor the poor person out of mercy and the fear of God’s judgment.

Furthermore, mercy triumphs over judgment! This is the positive side of the proverb. It is—as the parables of Jesus cited above show—mercy, that is, a person’s faithful submission and obedience to God, that conquers judgment. This cuts two ways, for the mercy will destroy both one’s judging of others and God’s judgment of oneself.

Significant in the choice of words here is the fact that mercy in scripture is not simply charitable evaluation of others but caring for the poor, that is, charity. This not only reflects the previous section of honoring the poor but asks why the Christians were not themselves caring for the poor.

James now focuses on charity and its relevance to faith within the overall topic of the care and appreciation of the poor. The structure is parallel to 2:1–13: in each section James opens with a topic verse, then has an example, a logical argument, and a two-part biblical argument.[6]


Mercy and judgment (2:13)

Sadly we fail, over and over again, to live the life of obedience, and we are very blameworthy, for at one and the same time we have to admit that ‘Yes, I did disobey’ and ‘No, I did not have to’. It is good for us that James goes on now to speak of mercy. We are in constant need of the mercy of God, and he shows us on what terms we may have it: judgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy (13).

The Lord Jesus taught that it is the merciful who obtain mercy (Mt. 5:7), and amplified his teaching in the story of the unforgiving servant (Mt. 18:21–35). Forgiveness was extended in relation to an impossible debt, but when the merciful king discovered that he was offering mercy to one who had no mercy in his own spirit the offer was withdrawn—and, said Jesus, ‘so also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive’ (35). It is not that our mercy has purchasing power, but that it has evidential value. Neither Jesus nor James would see our merciful deeds as meritorious acts by which we make ourselves worthy of God’s mercy. If we could make ourselves worthy we would not need mercy! Both teach that, if we are not merciful, we can neither credibly seek nor effectively receive the mercy he offers.

The word which links verses 12 and 13 is judged … judgment. Since (12) the law of God is itself a liberating agent, disobedience is without excuse and we have much need of divine mercy. But (13) instead of simply saying that mercy is available, James states the truth about mercy in a way that rounds off his whole argument. The essence of the illustration in verses 2–4 is that a merciful spirit was replaced, on spurious, superficial grounds, by a spirit of partiality, favouring the wealthy. In verse 13 the mercy we need is conditional upon showing mercy, for only the merciful obtain mercy. We need to be careful about the words without mercy (13). James Adamson is quite wrong in saying that a person lacking mercy ‘will come under the old ruthlessness of the “law” ’. Ruthlessness is an inappropriate description of Old Testament law, which had as its basis an insistence on absolute equality between crime and punishment. Without mercy is not the same as what we mean by merciless. If we fail to find shelter under divine mercy, then the law takes its absolutely just and equitable course; we get what we deserve. But the presence of a merciful spirit assures us that we can sue for and shelter under mercy.

rsv tries to help James by smoothing over the abruptness with which he ends his paragraph. We read, yet mercy triumphs over judgment. There is no yet in James’ Greek. niv makes the words an independent exclamation, and this is correct. But what do they mean? The words are not a command or an invitation, but an unqualified statement. We need to ask when and about whom such an assertion can be made, and A. Barnes gives us the lead we need: ‘In the plan of salvation … respect is done to justice, but mercy triumphs. Justice demands, as what is due, that the sinner should be condemned; mercy pleads that he may be saved—and mercy prevails.’ In this way, at the end of a very searching section, James brings us a real word of comfort and assurance. To be sure, if we show ourselves to be merciful, we can reckon on God’s mercy, but there is no way in which anything about ourselves is a sufficient ground of confidence in prospect of the judgment-seat of Christ. In fact, is our capacity for showing mercy worth talking about? Are we always as truly merciful as we ought? Even at its best is our mercy a pure, good, perfect mercy? Is it not a tawdry and inadequate thing, just as much shot through with the taint of our selfishness as is anything else we sinners do? Such questions flood the mind—and we know the answers only too well. Practical and loving James directs us, at the end, away from self-questioning to the one thing that is eternally certain. In the cross of Christ justice was fully done, its claims were fully met and God’s mercy to sinners triumphed in the provision of a complete forgiveness and a full salvation. Maybe the very abruptness of his words as he (so to speak) blurts out this great truth shows how James’ own heart was moved at the thought of Jesus, Calvary and the great, eternal acquittal. Thus even before the judgment-seat mercy wins the day. It ‘crows over judgment’. This is our position before God. Judgment looks at our deserts; mercy at our needs. And God himself looks at the cross of his Son.

But there is another application. In verse 4 James rebuked us for ‘becoming judges’. This is not only wrong in itself, but makes us unlike our God. Should not we too be those in whose every act mercy has the last laugh?[7]


[1] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1998). James (pp. 115–117). Chicago: Moody Press.

[2] Doriani, D. M. (2007). James. (R. D. Phillips, P. G. Ryken, & D. M. Doriani, Eds.) (pp. 75–78). Phillipsburg, NJ: P&R Publishing.

[3] Calvin, J., & Owen, J. (2010). Commentaries on the Catholic Epistles (pp. 308–309). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

[4] Guthrie, G. H. (2006). James. In T. Longman III & D. E. Garland (Eds.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Hebrews–Revelation (Revised Edition) (Vol. 13, pp. 236–237). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

[5] Ellsworth, R. (2009). Opening up James (pp. 86–87). Leominster: Day One Publications.

[6] Davids, P. H. (2011). James (pp. 62–63). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.

[7] Motyer, J. A. (1985). The message of James: the tests of faith (pp. 102–104). Leicester, England; Downers Grove, IL: Inter-Varsity Press.

Embracing a New-Age Charismatic Worship on Sunday Mornings — Reformation Charlotte

There was something peculiar about the old hymns that churches would embrace and sing together on Sunday mornings. For the most part, they were rich in doctrine — they actually communicated something to the congregation. They were exegetical, they told us who God is and about what He has done. It was in response to this rich theology and the knowledge of God that the congregation responded in praise and worship.

It was reverent and orderly — it was not a chaotic mess. That is, until, the charismatic movement began to grow. The charismatic movement has influenced the worship in the vast majority of churches in the world today. Charismatic worship focuses much less on biblical doctrine and much more on garnering an emotional response from the worshiper.

Charismatic worship music draws its foundations from the modern culture — and that culture is a mixture of Western technological advances in music coupled with Eastern mysticism. That is, through modern musical styles, often an emotional trance-like state can be achieved through repetitive beats and choruses. With a lack of concern for the words itself, in a sense, one is “under the influence” of the music, increasing suggestibility.

This is one of the hallmarks of the charismatic movement. Their focus is much more on the Holy Spirit — what they believe to be the Holy Spirit — than it is on sound doctrine. Consider what one of the pioneers of modern charismatic worship, Jack Hayford, states in his book, Worship His Majesty,

There is an unholy propensity in human nature to secure itself in history rather than open itself to simplicity–the simple touch of God, the summoning voice of the Spirit. Just as with the Reformation, ecclesiastical and theological resistance sustains its posturing against the new, the fresh and the childlike. The effort to “keep control” breeds the forging of new instruments of doctrinaire domination over the church…

The idea is that doctrine enslaves people to an inferior form of worship and does not allow one to “experience” the Holy Spirit through their emotions. In the same chapter, Hayford, writing about the effects of the Protestant Reformation says, “the shackles of emotional, intellectual, and spiritual slavery were cast aside and a renaissance of learning and social advancement was realized.” Of course, that isn’t exactly true. It is true that Christians were set free from the spiritual bondage of the Roman Catholic Church, which is a false church filled with false doctrine. However, as the New Testament teaches, being set free from the bondage of corruption actually enslaves us to Christ Himself, which, in turn, enslaves us to good doctrine. Hayford, however, continues, “I believe a new Reformation in worship will accomplish the same thing.”

The “Reformation in worship” to which Hayford points is the watered-down charismatic emotionally-driven worship we see in our churches today. When you walk into any modern Evangelical church, the airwaves are filled with the sounds of electric guitars, drums, and a multitude of instrumental riffs that tickle the ears of hundreds, even thousands of people who stand with their hands in the air swaying back and forth. Sadly, for the most part, it isn’t God that they are worshiping, but the music. Often there is no choir, and often, the music is led by one lead singer. The focus is often on that lead singer and rather than congregational, reverent worship, it’s an entertainment show that is designed to garner an emotional state to prepare one to hear and receive whatever it is the pastor, who follows the worship service, has to say. It’s, for lack of a better way of putting it, hypnosis.

And this is exactly how the Eastern mystics have worked throughout the ages, and now repackaged with a modern snare into the New-Age movement. Entrance your audience, indoctrinate them into your religion through seduction, and keep them through their emotions. The charismatic worship movement is simply New-Age mysticism enveloped with a veneer of Christianity.

Embracing a New-Age Charismatic Worship on Sunday Mornings — Reformation Charlotte

Conditioning the masses to an extreme agenda — Christian Research Network

“None of these policies delivered on their false promises, but that was beside the point. The point was to get the American public habituated to the idea of mammoth redistributionist policies.”

(Monica Crowley – Washington Times)  Socialist revolutionaries are usually in a hurry. They ram through radical political, economic and social change, lest progressivism’s march slows or halts completely.

At the same time, history has taught them that when moving against societies with durable and cherished traditions of liberty and free-market economics, they must first acclimate those publics to statist ideas before they can actualize them as policy. The revolutionaries’ desire for speed exists in constant tension with the need for gradual conditioning of the masses.

This is precisely the blueprint for today’s American socialists, who move with both a predictable urgency and calculated methodology as they try to steer the nation away from limited government, capitalism and individual liberty and toward centralized control, command economics and collectivism.

It was former President Barack Obama — not Sen. Bernie Sanders — who turned the Democratic Party into a vehicle for neo-socialism and made unadulterated leftists like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, New York Democrat, possible. Given his unique persona, Mr. Obama was able to cleverly disguise socialism as a hip, virtuous-sounding pragmatism, based on themes of equality and social justice. View article →

Research:

Social Justice

Conditioning the masses to an extreme agenda — Christian Research Network

China Unveils The World’s First Female AI News Anchor As Global Shift Towards Robots And Artificial Intelligence Accelerates — Now The End Begins

China’s state-run news agency, Xinhua, today unveiled ‘the world’s first female AI news anchor’; a gender-balancing counterpart for the existing male AI news presenters.

Go to YouTube and watch some videos on when the automobile was a new technology. You will see mostly people riding in horse-drawn vehicles who look on with amusement at the new “fad” of the automobile. Convinced and secure in the knowledge that the new technology will never last, a whole generation of businesses built around the horse and carriage are about to become extinct overnight. And they did. Dead man walking. And so it is now in our day with AI and the rise of the robots.

“And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.” Revelation 13:15 (KJV)

Watching the videos of these new AI news anchors, I will admit having a wry smile on my face as these chinese robots read the news. But guess what? Faster than you can imagine, you’re going to blink your eyes and wake up in a world of robots that will be nearly indistinguishable from human beings. Even now you have been trained to speak to your devices as if they were real. “Hey Siri, please call Andy mobile’, ‘Alexa, play turn the lights down’, ‘Google, I need a good fried chicken recipe’.

If the Lord tarries, this will be the world we will inhabit. Sex with robots? Already happening. Self-driving cars? Nearly perfected. Stores that have no workers and you pay for your items without ever taking out your wallet? Old news, brother. Antichrist has not shown up yet, but the beginning elements of what will be his end times world system are already with us. Want to miss out on the time of Jacob’s trouble? You can click here to find out how.

China has unveiled its ‘first female AI news anchor’

FROM THE NATIONAL: In news that journalists around the world are perhaps loathe to report, China has just unveiled another non-human that is set to steal all our jobs. Dystopian – maybe not, but unsettling for those who are reporting it, perhaps.

Named Xin Xiaomeng, the perfectly-coiffed broadcaster is the newest addition to Xinhua’s team of existing male AI anchors.

Xiaomeng was developed jointly by Xinhuaand search engine company Sogou, and was shown off in a video sent out on social media on Thursday. Aside from a few seemingly stiff facial muscles, Xiaomeng is remarkably life-like, complete with hand adjustments during piece-to-cameras, and just enough on-cue blinking.

The computer-generated journalist was modelled after real-life Xinhua news anchor Qu Meng, whose voice and image provided inspiration for developers.

In a video on Twitter, Xiaomeng addresses the world in Chinese with English subtitles, saying “hello to everybody who’s watching”, and announcing her role as broadcaster for China’s upcoming Two Sessions political conferences in March.

Xiaomeng will join Xinhua’s existing roster of two male AI reporters, who were revealed last November, in covering the conference.

In fact, as Xiaomeng was being unveiled to the world, Xinhua announced that her one of her male counterparts also got an upgrade. In an accompanying tweet, Xinhua extolled the virtues of its new and improved male AI journalist, who now has a name: Xin Xiaohao.

Xiaohao has not only gained a new register of body languages, but he has also been promoted from a seating position to standing during his broadcasts, and he’s pretty pleased about it:

“Henceforth, rather than working behind the desk, I’ll be broadcasting the news in front of the desk. Instead, I’ll be broadcasting from a standing position. I can make more hand gestures and facial expressions, ” he tells the world.

“Now I have my own name, Xin Xiaohao. Thanks to this upgrade, I’ll be able to conduct better broadcasts.” The two carry off their (admittedly short) broadcasts seamlessly, with not a stutter or forgotten cue in sight.

However, in a sign-off line that will be unlikely to win her any friends in the newsroom of the flesh-and-blood variety, Xiaomeng promises to “present you with a better news broadcast”. READ MORE

China Unveils The World’s First Female AI News Anchor As Global Shift Towards Robots And Artificial Intelligence Accelerates — Now The End Begins

Voddie Baucham Warns of Emotionalism and Anti-Intellectualism — Reformation Charlotte

In this video, Voddie Baucham warns about the trends of emotionalism, mysticism, and anti-intellectualism. You can also read my article about embracing an emotionalistic charismatic anti-intellectual worship here.

Voddie Baucham Warns of Emotionalism and Anti-Intellectualism — Reformation Charlotte

Uncommon Ground: Pope Francis, Muslim Imam Pushing One-World Religion? — Eradicate: Blotting Out God in America

Pope Francis recently signed a pact with Muslims in a possible push toward a one-world religion and declared that diversity of religions is God’s will. But wait. Doesn’t the Bible warn Christians about unifying with those who worship other gods and have contradictory beliefs?

God sent His Son to save sinners, but Allah had no son. Isn’t this a problem with anyone else? There are many glaring, stark contrasts between the founders of Christianity (Jesus) and Islam (Muhammad) as well as the doctrines themselves. Jesus taught love and forgiveness, and He also instructed His disciples to “pray for those who persecute you. (Matthew 5:44).”

But the prophet Muhammad was a violent warrior who promoted conquest, had multiple wives, and killed Jews and Christians – referring to them as infidels and sworn enemies. Look it up.

Jesus was a sinless, spiritual leader who laid down His life to save mankind, said “Father, forgive them” to those that crucified Him’ Jesus never killed anyone. Muhammad too, was a spiritual leader, who became a political leader, a liar, and a violent military leader. Christ ruled by peace while Muhammad ruled largely by the sword.

Nevertheless, a historic interfaith covenant was signed in the Middle East last week, and isn’t it interesting the U.S. mainstream media was practically silent about it? Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb, considered to be the most important imam in Sunni Islam, arrived at the signing ceremony with Roman Catholic Church leader Pope Francis “hand-in-hand in a symbol of interfaith brotherhood.”

The pope and the grand imam of al-Azhar signed what was referred to as “a historic declaration of fraternity, calling for peace between nations, religions and races, in front of a global audience of religious leaders from Christianity, Islam, Judaism and other faiths.” Many gods and spirits exist, but if one religion is true, all the rest have to be false. Does the Bible have anything to say about this?

“…do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world; …and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the Antichrist;” (1 John 4:1-3)

Though there are some similarities, Islam is quite incompatible with the Bible as well as America, a society that values Judeo-Christian principles and religious freedom. Islam will accept no other religions, no competing economic or political views, and no legal system except Sharia Law which would outlaw Christianity.

And by the way, did you know Muslims elected to Congress demand to be sworn in on the Quran, not the Bible? So who or what are they swearing allegiance to? Many passages in Islamic holy books command and justify violence in the name of Allah. Let’s look at what the Quran has to say about other religions.

“The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His messenger and strive to make mischief in the land is only this, that they should be murdered or crucified or their hands and their feet should be cut off on opposite sides or they should be imprisoned; (Quran 5:33)

“(Remember) when your Lord inspired the angels… “I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve (defy Allah). Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them” (Quran 8:12)

The Quran contains at least 109 verses that speak of war with nonbelievers, usually meaning non-Muslims, as well as 164 verses declaring jihad, holy war. Religion of peace – really?

Islam is a social, political and economic system (Sharia Law) that uses a false deity (Allah) to advance its agenda of control. The meaning of Islam is “submission,” and people must bow to Allah.

The God of the Bible, Jesus Christ said, “All authority has been given to me (Matthew 28:18).” Islam, however, teaches Jesus was only a prophet. They say He was not God and teach that Jesus did not sacrifice Himself for our sins and die on the cross, nor did He rise from the dead. But these are core essentials of the Christian faith!

Muhammed claimed to be the last and greatest of all of God’s prophets, he had fifteen wives, and sanctioned the beating of wives (Sura 4:34). Muhammed was well known for spreading his new religion by force. Five years after his death, Muhammad’s followers captured Jerusalem and by 732 A.D. they went into Spain. Their aggression continued for hundreds of years until finally, resistance rose up via the Crusades which began in 1095.

Back to Pope Francis: another thing he did was to declare the Sharia-governed United Arab Emirates the ‘homeland of tolerance.’ Just look at history and news reports and you’ll see this could not be further from the truth.

So, the Pope shook hands, kissed, and signed with El-Tayeb, an open advocate of Sharia law. In fact, in a June 2016 television interview he stated,

“The penalty for an open apostate, departing from the community [Islam], is well stipulated in sharia. An apostate must be pressed upon to repent within a variable period of time or be killed.”

Clearly, Islam and Christianity are mutually exclusive. Both claim to be the only true way to God, but both cannot be right.

Former Muslim, Elijah Abraham, is an expert on Islam and as an evangelist, he travels worldwide to train pastors on apologetics and how to witness to Muslims. He states:

Islam is advancing in the West with an evil agenda to convert Westerners and especially Americans to Islam and dominate the world. If that happens, the biggest loser will be the church of Jesus Christ in the West because of its loss of its religious liberty and freedom of speech.

Nowhere in the Bible does God encourage joining with other religions. While there have been many attempts in recent years to find common ground between the two religions, the fact is that stark differences remain.

It is misguided to focus on a few common teachings without considering the differencesin major doctrines that are diametrically opposed to one another. This is not to say we shouldn’t evangelize people of other faiths, but when it comes to “uniting,” Christians are often the first to compromise, and it’s often biblical doctrine that suffers. All through the New Testament, we read about salvation by faith in Christ alone; that we are saved by the grace of God through trusting in the sacrifice of Jesus (Eph. 2:8-9).

We know that powerful, world elites are pushing uniformity and a one world religion, but it’s still stunning to see top world leaders from Catholicism and Islam make such a dramatic display. This is clearly a sign we’re drawing closer to the end.

SEE THE FULL, EXTENSIVE POST AND MORE ARTICLES HERE

Uncommon Ground: Pope Francis, Muslim Imam Pushing One-World Religion? — Eradicate: Blotting Out God in America

Death Culture: Who Was Margaret Sanger, Why Should We Care?

Eradicate: Blotting Out God in America

It was Margaret Sanger who laid the foundation for today’s liberal social agenda that has left a legacy of anguish, confusion, pain, and death during Planned Parenthood’s century in business. Their legacy of “birth control” is one of radical feminism, rebellion against God, racism, and eugenics that in recent years has expanded to include abortion on demand and sexual experimentation leading to brokenness, depression, regret, and worse.

What Adolf Hitler did to millions of Jews through eugenics and sterilization, Planned Parenthood founder, Margaret Sanger has dwarfed by pioneering a movement leading to the abortion of over one hundred million babies in the United States since the 1920s. Sadly, most people are ignorant of this horrible history leading to ideas such as population control and euthanasia. Proud promoter of eugenics and racism, Margaret Sanger is celebrated today by most feminists and liberals. So what’s the truth behind this dark history?

Ninety-four. Remember…

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February 21 The Rewards of Meditation

scripture reading: Psalm 119:97–99
key verse: Psalm 104:34

May my meditation be sweet to Him;
I will be glad in the Lord.

He won three gold medals in the 1994 Winter Olympics. Johann Olav Koss’s remarkable feat was the result of a minimum of six hours of training per day, devotion that even his competitors admired. Koss captured the gold and the hearts of his nation’s people, the Norwegians, because he knew that hard work paid dividends. The innumerable hours of solitary rigors would eventually be rewarded.

Meditation is a deficient discipline in most people because they fail to see future benefits. It is viewed in a strangely passive light, though it calls for active engagement of mind and spirit.

Meditation is the training ground for wisdom and insight. The progressive intake of Scripture, combined with sensitivity to the Holy Spirit, renews the mind, priming it for godly decisions in tough matters.

Meditation sifts the heart. Problem areas, sins that perhaps you didn’t even know lurked within, are surfaced through the work of the Holy Spirit. This may be painful, but when it is accompanied by true repentance, you are liberated to live a holy, pure life.

Meditation accelerates obedience. God speaks quietly to your heart so that you can obey and reap the rewards.

Listen and let God cull the chaff. Wait patiently and obey His prompting. The rewards are bountiful.

I wait before You, O God. Sift my life and cull the chaff. Surface the sins that I need to confront. Speak to my heart while I am still before You.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (1998). Enter His gates: a daily devotional. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

21 february (1858) 365 Days with Spurgeon

How to keep the heart

“The peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7

suggested further reading: Mark 4:35–41

Cast your troubles where you have cast your sins; you have cast your sins into the depth of the sea, there cast your troubles also. Never keep a trouble half an hour on your own mind before you tell it to God. As soon as the trouble comes, quick, the first thing, tell it to your Father. Remember, that the longer you take telling your trouble to God, the more your peace will be impaired. The longer the frost lasts, the more thick the ponds will be frozen. Your frost will last till you go to the sun; and when you go to God—the sun, then your frost will soon become a thaw, and your troubles will melt away. But do not be long, because the longer you are in waiting, the longer will your trouble be in thawing afterwards. Wait a long while till your trouble gets frozen thick and firm, and it will take many a day of prayer to get your trouble thawed again. Away to the throne as quick as ever you can. Do as the child did, when he ran and told his mother as soon as his little trouble happened to him; run and tell your Father the first moment you are in affliction. Do this in everything, in every little thing—“in everything by prayer and supplication” make known your wants unto God. Take your husband’s headache, take your children’s sicknesses, take all things, little family troubles as well as great commercial trials—take them all to God; pour them all out at once. And so by an obedient practice of this command in everything making known your wants unto God, you shall preserve that peace “which shall keep your heart and mind through Jesus Christ.”

for meditation: If the God of peace is with you (Philippians 4:9), you have open access to the peace of God—but check carefully all the conditions in Philippians 4:6.

sermon no. 180[1]


[1] Spurgeon, C. H., & Crosby, T. P. (1998). 365 Days with Spurgeon (Volume 1) (p. 59). Leominster, UK: Day One Publications.

Thursday Briefing Feb. 21, 2019 – AlbertMohler.com

The intersection of transgender theory and modern sport: Gay athlete speaks out against ‘cheating’ trans athletes

So much for LGBTQ: How transgenderism undermines the gay rights movement

Reinvention of sport? What argument for creation of new, female-focused sports reveals about our culture

The post Thursday, Feb. 21, 2019 appeared first on AlbertMohler.com.

Download MP3

— Read on albertmohler.com/2019/02/21/briefing-2-21-19/

GOD’S VOICE CONFERENCE RESOURCES — thirtypiecesofsilverdotorg

A COLLECTION OF ARTICLES ON THE REVOICE “GAY CHRISTIAN “MOVEMENT FOR GOD’S VOICE CONFERENCE ATTENDEES AND OTHER RESEARCH INTEREST

Rev Thomas Littleton                                                                                   2/20/2019

1- The Revoice Conference Story begins

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/05/14/trusted-sbc-and-pca-seminaries-producing-sexual-minority-activists/

2- As the website for Revoice announces more speakers and workshops -the ties to ERLC and denominational leaders emerge . More radical language and topics are included

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/05/29/make-the-gospel-great-again-reject-the-false-gospel-of-lgbt-christianity/

3- Southern Baptist Convention concerns with presumed SBC President J D Greear history with Yarhouse and “The Nines Conference”

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/06/09/will-the-next-sbc-president-condemn-or-condone-the-revoice-conference-and-lgbt-christianity/

4- Revoice questions at SBC Convention in Dallas 2018 have Littleton falsely accused or threats and removed by Dallas Police

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/06/15/erlc-thugary-at-sbc-2018/

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/06/18/living-like-a-refugee-in-the-sbc/

5- SBCs Albert Mohler and TGC/ CBM&W  hide his ties to Revoice

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/06/24/revoice-albert-mohler-and-the-missing-link/

6- Revoice leaders working with LOVEboldly target your teens and Nate Collins , Mark Yarhouse history with Exodus International during 2013 collapse revealed .

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/07/07/beyond-revoice-part-1-recruiting-youth-pastors-targeting-your-teens/

7- Brain Camenker article on SBC faltering on LGBT

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/07/15/southern-baptist-leaders-need-wake-up-call-from-the-pews-on-false-gospel-of-social-justice-on-sexual-minorities/

8- Revoice Recap prior to the event

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/07/23/revoice-recap-cliff-notes-whats-wrong-with-revoice-sbc-tgc-responses-to-it/

9- The “Stain of Revoice ” at Albert Mohlers SBTS Seminary

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/08/15/the-stain-of-revoice/

10- Tim Keller’s work with Sam Allberry and Living Out ( who  promoted Revoice “for our US audience “) in UK  includes the announcement of a radical LGBT Inclusion “Church Audit ”

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/08/17/tim-kellers-lgbtqiinclusion-audit-for-your-church-do-you-measure-up/

11-More on  LGBT Inclusion “Church Audit” and broadening effort to redefine family as highlighted in Revoice

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/09/15/albert-mohler-erlc-redefining-family-and-forcing-lgbtqui-inclusion-audit/

12-Redefining Family efforts in the TGC/ ERLC

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/10/16/erlc-family-conference-redefines-family-as-the-inclusive-church/

13-Where the Same Sex Attracted/ Celibate narrative entered the church

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/10/31/the-shell-game-of-evangelical-leaders-new-sexual-language/

14-A personal story of LGBT+ agenda devouring ministry- Christian testimony -and a friends legacy as the National Park Service “queers History”

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2018/12/20/watching-an-agenda-devour-all-in-its-path-leaving-nothing-in-its-wake/

15- Tim Keller who is one layer behind the scenes with Revoice wants to “Christianize Psychology “. The blending of these two opposites is a the root of Revoice

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2019/01/06/tim-keller-partners-with-interfaith-fundingapa-spiritualityand-the-mormon-religion-to-christianize-psychological-counseling/

16- Presbyterian Church in America efforts to correct course on Revoice meet with cover up effort

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2019/01/10/is-revoice-lgbt-thriving-through-cover-up-in-pca-missouri-presbytery/

17-Respected Colson Center hires Revoice speaker and mentor Preston Sprinkle

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2019/01/13/colson-center-christian-apologetics-going-revoice-rethink-and-liberation-theology/

18- More radical Transgender activism agenda follows Revoice in PCA

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2019/01/15/are-pca-pastor-and-daughter-teaching-the-transgender-two-step/

19- Revoice endorsing ERLC partner SSA/ Gay Priest Sam Allberry talks about churches supporting “Singles Adoption and Foster Care”

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2019/01/22/wheels-of-the-bus-to-round-and-round-as-tgc-erlc-begin-the-push-for-ssa-adoption-and-foster-care/

20-Revoice Rebellion Spreads in PCA

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2019/01/29/lgbt-rebellion-spreads-in-the-presbyterian-church-of-america/

21- Recounting how Albert Mohler / Russell Moore/ ERLC 2014 conference “apologizing for being wrong ” and affirming sexual orientation -led to where the church is with the movement behind Revoice

https://thirtypiecesofsilver.org/2019/02/16/albert-mohler-sold-the-farm-and-ignored-real-victims/

Revoice 2019 is scheduled and the movement to “promote LGBT+ flourishing in historic Christian tradition ” continues . Like the pro life movement – the struggle to stand for Biblical sexuality /marriage/family is ongoing and all Christians must be faithful to God’s Word  and remain /maintain a faithful presence as salt and light in our cultures .

2 Peter 1:2-4  (NKJV)

Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the [a]corruption that is in the world through lust.

GOD’S VOICE CONFERENCE RESOURCES — thirtypiecesofsilverdotorg

Gateway Pundit Exclusive: Inside the AGT Juggarnaut – FBI/DOJ Coverup of Clinton Foundation and Russian/China Related Crimes – PART II — The Gateway Pundit

A 2016 DOJ criminal investigation was suppressed and buried by the DOJ/FBI that involved a major NY Democratic power broker, Bill and Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation.

The investigation revolved around the illegal sale of US technology that was ITAR/EAR controlled and US State Department regulated.  This included advanced intelligence systems, surveillance, thermal cameras, sensors, radar, C4I and cyber warfare systems that were sold to Russia and China in the years before the 2016 election.

The DOJ terminated its internal investigation despite clear and irrefutable evidence of criminal activity and hid it from the public!

This story begins with the Clintons and their Clinton Foundation. It includes Russia and China, and ends with another FBI/DOJ cover-up of Clinton crimes. 

In our first post we discussed the Clinton Foundation and the Clintons’ efforts in assisting their friends’ business venture.  Marty Edelman and Mati Kochavi created the family of companies under the AGT International umbrella and then donated heavily to the Clintons and in turn the Clintons helped them promote their business.  This was a typical ‘pay to play’ arrangement with the Clintons – donate to the Clintons and the Clintons will help you get what you want.

Today we discuss the firm AGT International.  This firm that the Clintons helped create did all it could to generate revenues, even if it meant flagrantly breaking US law.  In 2014, AGT described itself on its website as the following –

Today’s world has more devices and sources of information than ever before, but are they truly interconnected? AGT International is revolutionizing public safety and security by connecting previously unlinked devices and data, making relevant information accessible and actionable for decision-makers and citizens alike.

We use our deep domain expertise to collect, analyze and identify the most relevant data; and our solutions provide enhanced visibility to empower people, governments and businesses to predict, visualize and manage cities and other complex environments.

Since its launch in 2007, AGT ($1B annual revenues) has been a pioneer, making the world safer by leading the integration of devices and new information sources. In the last five years we have connected a greater variety of sensors than anyone else in our industry while successfully delivering some of the world’s largest and most sophisticated public safety and security projects.

AGT International leverages three of the most compelling current technology trends to revolutionize public safety and security: the Internet of Things, Big Data Analytics and Cloud Computing. Our advanced proprietary software powers cloud-based knowledge solutions that make connected sensors and data accessible and delivers services that aid complex problem solving.

AGT is privately held with headquarters in Switzerland. The company is proud of its diversity: more than 50 nationalities are represented among its 2,400 employees.

AGT’s International Management Team –

The Clintons were compensated for their support and endorsement by Kochavi and Edelman through payments to the Clinton Foundation. These payments totaled millions of dollars.

AGT Statistics from company presentations –

AGT Introduction – slide detailing company offering and experience

Edelman and Kochavi were both involved in running the day to day business. For example, an AGT Management Meeting that includes executives from all of its business units, included Martin Edelman at the top of the list –

AGT’s flagship platform had multiple names such as “Wisdom” and “Urban Shield”.  This platform was a C4I (Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence) system.  Some of the other derivatives technologies that came with it were ITAR regulated.

ITAR refers to “International Traffic in Arms Regulations“. These regulations authorize the President to control the export and import of defense articles and defense services. To put it simply, if a company’s articles and services are related to national defense, there are certain things that must happen. For example, the individuals dealing in these items must undergo and maintain training regarding US laws and the nature of items prohibited for sale under these laws.  US law also prohibits the sale of ITAR products and services to certain foreign countries, like China and Russia.

AGT and 4D Security Solutions were fully aware of this and even stated this in writing in internal communications and mandated from all employees ITAR training and certification. Wisdom as well as some of the technologies that it used (such as thermal cameras, optics, radar and communications) were also fully ITAR regulated.

Below is a look at the 4D Security Solutions internal ITAR and EAR compliance information page. It indicates that 4D products are fully regulated by ITAR –

AGT sold the Wisdom platform under different names and configurations to various clients in the US. AGT’s platform was purchased and used in the Philadelphia Real Time Crime Center, by the Memphis Police, and the Tuscan Police.  In order to circumvent the ITAR and export controls, the products were relabeled and sold by different companies under the same AGT umbrella.

For example, in Tuscan, AGT sold its product under its company named 3i-MIND, which was based in Fort Lee New Jersey and called the product “OpenMIND” and “UrbanShield”. In Philadelphia the product was sold by 4D Security Solutions where it was packaged as a Real Time Crime Center and was deployed in the DVIC (Delaware Valley Intelligence Center).

AGT described their RTCC offering in the following way:

Law enforcement agencies use AGT International’s Connected City solution for crime prevention, crime response, criminal investigation, command and control (C2) centers and real-time crime centers.

Because our Urban Shield platform was specifically designed by leading edge software engineers working with law enforcement professionals to suit critical operational needs, investigation and analysis starts at a much more advanced level, with significantly more information.

By using powerful analytic algorithms that automatically convert data into decision-quality intelligence and embedding operational expertise, Urban Shield provides actionable information that empowers an entire organization – including less experienced personnel – to instantly take advantage of best practices.

Urban Shield makes people more effective and efficient by helping jump-start investigations and potentially disrupting criminal activity before it happens through early identification of leads, links, trends, patterns and suspicious activities. It also automates ongoing data capture and analysis, freeing personnel to focus on where the biggest impact can be realized – drawing conclusions and recommending action.

AGT was selling its product around the world to countries like India, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Thailand, the United Arab Emirates and Kazakhstan. AGT also began selling its ITAR controlled product in China and Russia. This would be OK if its product did not have to comply with ITAR and other defense regulations, but it did.

AGT’s success formula was based on using the Clinton political capital muscle and also ‘special inducements’ for foreign leaders to allow AGT to enter these domestic markets and compete against companies like IBM.  As can be seen from the Malaysian RTTC project details below, Dato Sri Najib, the Malaysian prime minister, who in 2018 was arrested and charged with corruption and embezzlement of tens of millions of dollars, paid a key role in pushing through AGT’s multi-million USD RTCC project intuitive.

Malaysia Police RTCC Project – Part I –

Malaysia Police RTCC Project – Part 2 –

Malaysia Police RTCC Project – Part 3 –

Malaysia Police RTCC Project – Part 4 –

Per a review of AGT’s Malaysian project it is clear that AGT in an attempt to win this project utilized methods like:
⦁ Demanding and obtaining political support from Prime Minister Dato Sri Najib
⦁ Demanding and obtaining political support from Minister of Home: Dato Hishamuddin
⦁ Working to “influence” the PM during his upcoming New York visit
⦁ Using the UAE/ Mubadala (Foreign investors) to pressure the PM
⦁ Using impending general elections to accelerate procurement

These tactics and strategies fit squarely within the Foreign Corrupt Practices Actwhich prohibit US companies from using bribes or large gifts to solicit business worldwide. No doubt that actions like these were never reported to the US government by AGT.

AGT circumvented the ITAR and other limitations on exporting Wisdom and many of its derivative technologies to places like China and Russia, by marketing the solution using the names “Urban Shield”, “CityMind”, “OpenMind”, and claiming that it was not a US based or a regulated product. However, this was not the case.

AGT’s iAGT Access Portal shows that companies under the AGT umbrella were using the same email, file depository, and messaging systems –

AGT also utilized US based shell companies and holding companies such as Star Management Services as the worldwide headquarters of AGT International, where the CEO Mati Kochavi was located. This location also included other top executives such as the CFO, COO, CIO, Legal, Operations, HR, IT, Product, Sales and Marketing.

This was done at least in part to circumvent the enormous tax liability AGT had because it conducted all of these operations from New York. As can be seen below Star Management was located in New York on Park Avenue –

AGT firm 4D Security Sources was also located in New York at the same location on Park Avenue –

In addition, companies under the AGT umbrella, such as 3i-MIND and others, provided their employees with fake aliases and identities. It’s believed that this was done to prevent the US government from locating these individuals and tracking them as they came to the US or when they traveled internationally in case ITAR crimes were investigated. Another potential reason why this elaborate disguise method was used was to bypass Visa travel restrictions and limitations that the US imposes on individuals who deal in intelligence and defense systems. Any Internet research would have yielded no matches for such individuals because they were using aliases for all of their work communications.

One illustration of this wide practice at AGT was identified in the corporate portal announcing that a new SVP Business Operations was joining the team and his name was “Neo Burton”. The posting then provided the following details about his CV and work history –

However, the same individual, Nithai Barzam, is listed on LinkedIn with a different name than the one he used at the AGT related company.

 

In his profile Barzam claims he was the SVP at AGT –

The companies under the AGT umbrella didn’t have real financial, compliance, regulatory, and governance boundaries.  All financing, legal, and management directives came from the management team that was located at the Star Management offices in NYC.

In the invoice below for example, we can see that 3i-MIND purchased some “Consulting Services” for a Fusion Center project.  The request for payment was then routed and paid by AGT International from a Swiss bank in Zurich. This is despite the fact that 3i-MIND was incorporated in the US and was registered and operated from New Jersey

One of the most alarming characteristics of AGT’s management culture was its complete disregard for classified information, despite the fact that it’s employees and executives signed strict project secrecy requirements and NDAs. Often times, the company provided presentations to clients using classified information. Considering that many of clients of AGT were in places like China and Russia, it is certain that most of the foreign clients were never cleared for this information.

The family of AGT companies did business at multiple locations in China, Russia, FSU (the Former Soviet Union), and throughout the Middle East, often knowingly and willingly dealing directly with the host country’s teams likely connected with their local intelligence services.

For example, AGT released a corporate portal publication of a Safe City project launch in China (based on the Wisdom intelligence platform). Also, note that on the left side ‘Recent Comments’ section, the company is advertising that 4D Security Solutions was awarded the NYC’s Penn Station Surveillance project –

One company presentation detailed some of the features offered to the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs –

Below is a slide detailing some of the features offered to the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs – Part 2 –

Below is a slide detailing some of the features Offered to the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs – Part 3

In summary it can’t be overstated the amount of defense technology and state secrets that were illegally exported to Russia, China and elsewhere by AGT and its host companies as a result of these sales!

In our first post we discussed how the Clintons helped build the family of companies known as AGT International.  They promoted the company in return for ‘donations’ to their Foundation.

Today we’ve discussed the many actions that AGT International took to increase sales worldwide.  It didn’t matter which country customers were located in or if it was legal to provide the customers in these countries sensitive defense and intelligence related technology.  A sale was a sale and ethics were out the window.

In our next post we’ll discuss how the FBI/DOJ got involved but then suppressed and eventually terminated their investigation of AGT shortly before the 2016 Presidential election.

Gateway Pundit Exclusive: Inside the AGT Juggarnaut – FBI/DOJ Coverup of Clinton Foundation and Russian/China Related Crimes – PART II — The Gateway Pundit

21 FEBRUARY 365 Days with Calvin

Keeping Watch over Us

Awake, why sleepest thou, O Lord? arise, cast us not off forever. Psalm 44:23

suggested further reading: Isaiah 43:1–7

In this verse the saints express the desire that God, in pity for them, will at length send them help and deliver them. Although God allows the saints to plead with him in this babbling manner, asking him to rise up or awaken, they should be fully persuaded that God continually keeps watch for their safety and defense.

We must guard against the notion of Epicurus, whose god, having his abode in heaven, delighted only in idleness and pleasure. But since the insensibility of our nature is so great that we do not fully comprehend the care that God has for us, the godly here request that God will be pleased to give them some evidence that he is neither forgetful of them nor slow to help them.

Likewise we must firmly believe that God ceases not to regard us, even though he appears to be doing so. Yet such assurance is of faith and not of the flesh, that is to say, it is not natural to us. Thus the faithful often give utterance before God to this contrary sentiment, which they conceive from the state of things as they see it. In doing so, they discharge from their breasts those morbid affections that belong to the corruption of our nature, and which then allows faith to shine forth in its pure and native character.

It may be objected that though nothing is more holy than prayer, prayer may become defiled when some forward imagination of the flesh is mingled with it. I confess that is true, but in using the freedom which the Lord grants to us, let us consider that in the goodness and mercy by which he sustains us, God wipes away this fault so that our prayers are not defiled by it.

for meditation: Just as our eyelids protect our eyes every moment of a day, so God watches over us and protects us moment by moment. Think of some ways that God protects you without your being aware of it.[1]


[1] Calvin, J., & Beeke, J. R. (2008). 365 Days with Calvin (p. 70). Leominster; Grand Rapids, MI: Day One Publications; Reformation Heritage Books.

Is Christianity For Suckers? – Abounding Grace Radio

Someone once said, “There’s a sucker born every minute.” Who first said it is disputed. It has been attributed to P. T. Barnum, to a banker, and to other possible sources. Whoever said it first, it captures the spirit of skepticism perfectly. The skeptic, i.e., the one who doubts everything and everyone but himself will not credit any authority beyond himself and his own sense experience, i.e., what he knows from his own eyes, ears, nose, and touch. Such an approach to knowing things is not without its difficulties. Our senses are generally reliable but they are not infallible. Sleight of hand works because the sleight of hand artist is able to distract us or create an illusion.

Of course, when pressed, the skeptic cannot really meet his own test. After all, how, on his own terms, does the skeptic really know that he exists? He depends on someone one else to tell him. Most of us have awakened from a dream that, weird as it might have been, seemed completely real. Yet when we awakened we realized that it was not real at all. Yet, few skeptics are so radically consistent and to be completely skeptical about everything—even themselves and their own sense experience. They tend to apply their skepticism selectively. It is often aimed at the heart of the Christian religion, the resurrection.

The Apostle Paul recognized how central the resurrection of Christ is to the Christian faith. He wrote:

Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain (1 Cor 15:12–14; ESV).

If there is no resurrection from the dead, if Christ has not been raised, then the Christian faith is empty, meaningless. It all hinges on the bodily resurrection of Jesus. It will not do to make the resurrection a metaphor for human renewal or the changing of the seasons or some other sentiment. The Christian faith is a claim and something that really happened. It is a historical claim. We say that a Jewish rabbi was handed over by the Jews to the Roman authorities and that he was crucified and buried on Friday and that he was raised early on Sunday morning, the first day of the week.

The gospel writer Luke was one of the most skilled and careful historians in antiquity. He recorded the scene when the disciples found the empty tomb:

But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they went to the tomb, taking the spices they had prepared. And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they went in they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel. And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise.” And they remembered his words, and returning from the tomb they told all these things to the eleven and to all the rest (Luke 24:1–9; ESV).

Luke did not describe a metaphor or a figure of speech. Luke narrated the story of a missing body. The disciples went with the intent of finishing the care of the body for burial. They had run out of time on Friday before sunset, before the beginning of the Jewish Sabbath. Now it was Sunday morning and so they brought spices fully expecting his corpse to be where it had been laid—in the tomb purchased by Joseph of Arimathea (Luke 23:50). In the narrative he takes us into the tomb. We see the puzzled disciples. They were stumped for the same reasons that you and I would be stumped: “Now that is odd. We put him here. What happened?” Luke, ever the careful historian—he does not appeal to the supernatural carelessly when ordinary providence will do—tells us that something remarkable happened. The Lord answered their question. They recognized what kind of person it was, an angel. They were properly afraid. The angel spoke sense. “Why are you looking for the living among the dead?” Jesus did not belong to the class of tomb dwellers any longer because he was no longer dead. The angel reminded them of Jesus’ own words, which took on new significance, not that they fully understood everything.

Luke’s narrative is based on ordinary, universal sense experience. The disciples were in their right minds. They were sad, as anyone would be at the loss of a leader and a friend but they expected him to be dead. They did not expect him to be alive. In other words, the resurrection was not a projection of their hope and wishes. They were forced to the conclusion by the empty tomb and the words of the angel. That was part of their sense experience too. It would not be rational to say, “Well, that could not have happened.” “Could” is not a particularly scientific word. “I did not expect that to happen” is more scientific but if science is about anything, it is about facts and the fact before them—however hard it was to explain—was that the tomb was empty. They were at the right place. Jesus’ body should have been there but it was not. The angel said, “He is not here. He is risen.” They heard those words not magically or subjectively (e.g., “my truth” or “my experience of the angel”). No, they all experienced the angel with their senses just as they had experienced the empty tomb and the sunshine and everything else that day. The angel’s appearance was a supernatural event just as the resurrection was a supernatural event but it was not a magical event nor was it a gnostic secret. It happened in the real, objective, external world, the same world that you and I experience with our senses every day.

Believing ones senses is not for suckers. It is the way we ordinarily live. Of course, as we have already seen, our senses, though generally reliable, do not define what can or cannot happen. They merely help us make sense of what is happening. To rule out the resurrection of Jesus a priori as impossible is not science any more than it was science to say before 1540 that the sun cannot be at center of our universe. Great lots of people thought that the idea that earth revolves around the sun was rubbish. Well, that rubbish turned out to be true and all the authorities had to change their minds when presented with new evidence. It took longer than one might think to persuade people to account for the evidence. So it was with the resurrection. The evidence is that the tomb was empty.

We have a considerable body of evidence that Jesus was raised from the dead. Paul wrote to the Corinthians:

…and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me (1 Cor 15:5–8; ESV).

Paul made this claim in public. This is not a claim like so many others that could not have been tested at the time. He was not claiming that “I heard about this event way over there that no one can verify.” He was saying that some of the witnesses were still alive. He claimed that he himself, on the road to Damascus, had seen the risen Christ.

The Jewish authorities knew that Jesus had been raised. Were there no evidence they should not have paid the soldiers to keep silent about what they saw.

While they were going, behold, some of the guard went into the city and told the chief priests all that had taken place. And when they had assembled with the elders and taken counsel, they gave a sufficient sum of money to the soldiers and said, “Tell people, His disciples came by night and stole him away while we were asleep.’ And if this comes to the governor’s ears, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.” So they took the money and did as they were directed. And this story has been spread among the Jews to this day (Matt 28:11–15; ESV).

The guards had to be paid to cover up the truth. Had Jesus’ body been stolen they should have sent the guards to track down the disciples and do what Roman authorities did to criminals. They had no compunctions about torturing people to get the truth. In this case, they had every incentive to find the disciples and torture them until they told where they had hidden the body. Had the body been stolen, the guards who failed would have been put to death and new troops dispatched to recover the body. There was no such investigation because there was no stolen body. There was only the risen Jesus.

More than that, Jesus’ body was not the only only one raised in this episode. Matthew says that, at the moment of Jesus’ death:

And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split. The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many (Matt 27:51–53).

Again, these were verifiable claims. Matthew knows that had they not happened, his account could be easily falsified but he made the claim because it really happened. He knew that his claim could be sustained by the evidence.

Christianity is not a religion for suckers, for rubes, for the easily persuaded. It is a religion for those who follow evidence, who went looking for Jesus’ body and upon not finding it looked for an explanation. This is not to say that Christianity is a matter of mere calculation. It is a religion. It is a series of claims about ultimate truth revealed by God and unless the Holy Spirit gives new life to one, it is impossible to be born again (John 3) and to trust in Jesus for salvation. It is important for believers to know, however, that their faith is not a fairy tale or the product of the fevered imaginations of first-century folk given to mythology. It is grounded in empirical (sense-experience) evidence and historical facts. Indeed, one would have to be a sucker to disregard the evidence.
— Read on www.agradio.org/is-christianity-for-suckers.html

Quick Shot Responses to “Who Created God?” (Cold-Case Christianity S5E1) — Cold Case Christianity

In this episode of the Cold-Case Christianity Broadcast, J. Warner offers a number of brief, rhetorically powerful responses to the objection: “Who created God?” These responses are designed to help you remove intellectual obstacles when talking about God with your friends and family members. They are also available on the Cold-Case Christianity Phone App so you can access them as you are interacting with others.

Be sure to watch the Cold-Case Christianity Broadcast on NRBtv every Monday and Saturday! In addition, here is the audio podcast (the Cold-Case Christianity Weekly Podcast is located on iTunes or our RSS Feed):

https://html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/8442566/height/360/theme/legacy/thumbnail/yes/preload/no/direction/backward/

Quick Shot Responses to “Who Created God?” (Cold-Case Christianity S5E1) — Cold Case Christianity