Monthly Archives: April 2019

April 30 He Is Alive!

Scripture Reading: Matthew 28:9–15

Key Verse: Matthew 28:10

Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell My brethren to go to Galilee, and there they will see Me.”

What must it have felt like for the disciples when Jesus died? They had left everything for this man, followed Him for three years, and built all their hopes and dreams on His ideas. Not only that, but they had heard all the incredible things He said. He told them that He “was” even before Abraham lived. He said that He and the Father were one. He declared He was the only way to God. He had told them such amazing things, but now there He was, hanging on a cross, dead. How could this be?

The disciples were confused, scared, mournful, and completely distraught. Only one thing could have turned them around. Only one thing could have breathed new life into their downtrodden spirits. Praise God, that one vital thing came in the cry of an excited friend running toward them, shouting, “He’s alive! He’s alive!” Jesus had conquered death.

Believers oftentimes take this news for granted. It seems so commonplace today to speak of the resurrection of Jesus. Our familiarity, however, must never lessen the impact of the declaration, “He’s alive!”

For mankind, death had always been the final word, the inescapable end. By achieving victory over death, Jesus proved He was whom He claimed to be. By demonstrating His power over man’s greatest fear, He showed Himself to be mankind’s greatest friend, Savior, and Lord.

Does your heart leap when you hear the proclamation of the living Lord? Take the clouded church lenses from your eyes and see the story fresh and new: Jesus is alive!

Lord, my heart leaps with joy when I hear the proclamation of Your resurrection. I rejoice that You died for my sins and that You arose again. I declare to a lost world, You are alive![1]

[1] Stanley, C. F. (2006). Pathways to his presence (p. 125). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

April 30 It Is Finished

Scripture Reading: Isaiah 61:1–3

Key Verse: Hebrews 12:2

Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

The dominant, swelling theme of the Cross is triumph. The almighty shout of “It is finished” declared the victory of God over the power of sin and the devil.

Make no mistake; Christ fought and won the cosmic battle of the ages on a small patch of Jewish ground. The substitutionary death of Christ atoned for our sins. Jesus Himself canceled and paid our sin debt.

The devil and his demons were likewise crushed by Christ at the cross. Satan’s hold on man was shattered, so that we who place our faith in the Savior are released from his dark domain and transferred into the kingdom of God.

Theologian Lewis Chafer wrote, “Christ clearly won a victory over Satan on the cross. In offering salvation to men, Christ fulfilled what was anticipated in Isaiah 61:1, where He is said to have provided freedom for those who were captives.”

The author of Hebrews exclaimed that Jesus “for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God” (Heb. 12:2 nasb).

The anguish of Christ on the cross—the nails, the taunts, the pain, the shame—is part and parcel of eternal conquest.

Be amazed at what God did with hands and feet nailed to a tree.

O God, I am amazed at what You did with hands and feet nailed to a tree. The anguish of Your Son became eternal conquest. Thank You that Satan was defeated at the cross and I am released from his dark domain and transferred into Your kingdom. It is finished![1]

[1] Stanley, C. F. (1999). On holy ground (p. 125). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

April 30, 2019 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report (US•World•Christian)


President Donald Trump directed officials to toughen rules for asylum seekers on Monday, including by introducing a fee for their applications and barring those who entered the country illegally from working until their claims are approved.

The Trump administration is working to designate the Muslim Brotherhood a foreign terrorist organization, the White House said on Tuesday, which would bring sanctions against Egypt’s oldest Islamist movement.

President Trump, three of his children and seven of his companies filed a federal lawsuit Monday against Deutsche Bank and Capital One Financial Corp to block the banks from complying with federal subpoenas investigating his financial dealings.

Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido on Tuesday called for a military uprising to oust President Nicolas Maduro and armed factions clashed at a protest outside a Caracas air base as the country hit a new crisis point.

Brazil’s Foreign Relations Minister Ernesto Araujo said on Tuesday that his country supports a democratic transition in Venezuela, where opposition leader Juan Guaido hours before said he had begun the “final phase” of his plan to oust President Nicolas Maduro.

The University of Cambridge will conduct a two-year academic study of how much it benefited from the Atlantic slave trade and whether its scholarship reinforced race-based thinking during Britain’s colonial era.

From algorithms to track “dark” ships smuggling stolen crude oil to an online licensing system to undercut corruption, one Nigerian government agency hopes it can use new technology to tackle theft which has cost the country billions.

Across the Midwest, growing numbers of grain farmers are choosing to shed their machinery and find renters for their land, all to stem the financial strain on their families, a dozen leading farm-equipment auction houses told Reuters. As these older grain farmers are retiring, fewer younger people are lining up to replace them. It means fewer customers for seed and chemical companies, fewer machine buyers, and fewer suppliers for grain merchants.

The Chinese navy, which is growing faster than any other major fleet, now controls the seas off its coast. Once dominant, the U.S. and its allies sail warily in these waters. A former U.S. naval officer says China’s advances have caught America napping.

Islamic State remains a potent threat around the world despite reduced capabilities, Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi said on Tuesday, adding its leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi had made his latest video appearance in a “remote area”.

AP Top Stories

A group of 147 mainly African refugees, rescued from the Libyan city of Misrata, were flown to an Italian military airport near Rome on Monday for resettlement.

United Airlines has covered cameras installed on in-flight entertainment screens located on the back of some seats on United flights.

France’s most famous Nazi hunter Serge Klarsfeld on Monday slammed the resurgence of “anti-Jewish hate,” days after a teenage gunman’s deadly attack on a synagogue in California.

The United Nations will grant Mozambique and the Comoros Islands $13 million in emergency funds to help provide food and water and repair damage to infrastructure, the organization said late on Sunday, after the second cyclone in a month slammed into the region.

U.S. forces in Syria have achieved all they can against the Islamic State. Without territory, ISIS will struggle to meet, train and organize attacks. Losing its “caliphate” deprived it of the allure that brought recruits and the professed allegiance of distant jihadists. No real military mission is left for U.S. troops in Syria. ISIS’ remnants in Syria are unlikely to gather where U.S. military forces patrol. Their prospects are poor.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani signed a bill into law on Tuesday declaring all U.S. forces in the Middle East terrorists and calling the U.S. government a sponsor of terrorism.

Fierce fighting for control of Libya’s capital that has already displaced tens of thousands of people threatens to bring a further worsening of humanitarian conditions, a UN official warned.

The National Rifle Association’s board unanimously re-elected Wayne LaPierre as its chief executive officer and replaced President Oliver North amid an eruption of public squabbling and a probe into the gun-rights group’s nonprofit status.

Travelers on American, Alaska and JetBlue airlines ran into travel trouble Monday during a brief computer outage, the second in a month.


The US and China are due to begin a fresh round of talks in Beijing on Tuesday as they edge closer to resolving their damaging trade dispute.

French courts have handed down 447 fines in the past eight months under new laws to tackle street harassment of women. The “outrages sexists” law was passed in August 2018, and allows for on-the-spot fines of up to €750 (£650).


A valedictorian at the leading Mormon academic institution, Brigham Young University, announced during his graduation speech he is a “gay son of God.”

A dispute over donated T-shirts sporting a Bible verse that basketball players wore during warm-ups at a New Mexico high school has come to an end with the head coach resigning. Todd Starnes reported the coach allowed his players to wear the donated shirts inscribed with “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me,” which is taken from Philippians 4:13 in the New Testament.

Gun Owners of California issued a dire warning this week about “pre-crime” legislation to prohibit people likely to commit a crime from owning a gun.

Mid-Day Snapshot · Apr. 30, 2019

The Foundation

“The advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation … forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of.” —James Madison (1788)

Blacklisting the NRA — And the Second Amendment

The external challenges to the NRA come in a week when the organization was facing internal strife.

While Economy Roars, Leftists Aim for Recession

GDP grew 3.2% in the first quarter, but media polling is driving the narrative.

Deputy AG Rosenstein Resigns Following Rocky Tenure

The often-attacked deputy AG ends his tenure at the DOJ on a strong note.

Grassley to Trump: Drop Tariffs or the Trade Deal Gets It

The senator is largely right on the merits, but the president is invested in his strategy.

Canada Silences Father of Gender Dysphoric Daughter

Judge orders him not to speak against his teen daughter’s decision to seek hormone treatment.

Three Black Men, a White Widow, and BBQ

“We can show the world that it’s all right to be kind.” The quartet had dinner together.

Video: Media Blames Synagogue Attack on Trump

A montage of leftist talkingheads blaming the president for anti-Semitic violence.

Video: Who Are the Racists?

Conservatives are accused of racism by the left on a daily basis. What’s going on?

Today’s Opinion

Tony Perkins
Legal Infanticide: Biggest Mistake Ever
Dennis Prager
Why Most Jews Aren’t Bothered by the Times’ Anti-Semitic Cartoon
Rich Lowry
The 8chan Terrorists
Cal Thomas
The Democrats’ Economy Problem
Stephen Moore
The Carbon Tax Fantasy
For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.

Tuesday Top News Executive Summary

Trump’s subpoena countermove, asylum overhaul, Beto’s green new deal, infrastructure, and more.

Tuesday Short Cuts

“We have … seen one of the world’s most prestigious newspapers become a cesspool of hostility towards Israel.” —Ron Dermer

Today’s Meme

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

Today’s Cartoon

For more of today’s cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.

News – 4/30/2019

Congo Ebola cases hit record for most reported in single day
Health experts are expressing growing alarm about the number of people sickened with the Ebola virus who are never reaching treatment centers, allowing the disease to spread to caregivers and countless others. Monday set a new record in this outbreak of 27 confirmed cases in a single day, Congo’s health ministry said. Over the past four days 93 cases had been confirmed.

Demons in the Halls of Congress
The subversives in Congress continue their mayhem. When Keith Ellison was elected to the House from Minnesota’s 5th district in 2006, he became the first Muslim in Congress. Since then, Barack Obama has helped push this forward by allowing tons of Somali immigrants into that Minnesota district, and the result has been the election of the anti-Semite Ilhan Omar. Her outrageous statements about Israel include that the Jewish state “hypnotizes” other nations. This is classic anti-Semitic garbage. Her hatred of Israel is truly over-the-top.

Out of the Ashes: Clash of Civilizations Could Summon New World Religion
Rockefeller-backed Federal Council of Churches pushed “World government”, “Universal system of money” and “Worldwide freedom of immigration” in 1942. The council was told by Dr. William Paton, co-secretary of the World Council of Churches, that “Collectivism is coming, whether we like it or not“ For those paying attention, there is a discernible pattern of social engineering that is directed at the major world religions, particularly Christianity. This is undoubtedly a very complex issue, as there are numerous belief systems and nuanced views of millions of people. What we know is that globalist financed wars and revolutions have fueled illegal immigration and stoked flames of conflict all over the world.

Iran Threatens to Shutter Straits of Hormuz Shipping Route
Iran’s armed forces chief of staff threatened to close the Strait of Hormuz, a vital shipping route, in response to U.S. sanctions on the regime, which he labeled as “hostility,” reported the semi-official ISNA news agency. Kuwaiti Deputy Foreign Minister Khaled al-Jarallah expressed alarm over Bagheri’s remarks. “We are looking at these threats with concern, and hoping as always to distance our region from this tension,” he said, reported the Kuwait News Agency.

US vows to track down remaining ISIS leaders
The US-led coalition against the group will fight across the world to “ensure an enduring defeat of these terrorists and that any leaders who remain are delivered the justice that they deserve,” a State Department spokesman said,

Elections are over; now Israelis notice the Palestinian Authority is collapsing
The outgoing government voted to withhold tax revenues from the Palestinians, in the sum of stipends to families of convicted or killed terrorists; pay cuts to security forces bring frustration; Hamas is making the most of it and in Israel – some are looking for a way out.

Limbaugh: Dems ‘starting to wake up to reality
‘It’s a slow-motion explosion right in front of ’em heading their way’ “I don’t think they can become fully woke, but they’re starting to wake up to reality,” he said. “That the Mueller report was a bomb, the Mueller report was a dud, and that they are not prepared to deal with Trump on any issue of substance. “They put every weapon they have in that Mueller report, in Trump-Russia collusion, and they are slowly awakening to the fact that it has bombed out on them,” he said.

Wealthy Elites Freak Out As Homeless Hordes Take Over West Coast Neighborhoods
For example, let’s talk about what is going on in Los Angeles. No city on the west coast has a bigger problem with homelessness than L.A. does, and many in the homeless population enjoy camping out on the beautiful beaches in the L.A. area at night. But of course many of the elite that paid millions of dollars for beachfront property are not too thrilled about this. Sex Pistols frontman Johnny Rotten was a key symbol of anti-establishment rebellion in the 1970s, but now he is freaking out because homeless people are making life very difficult for him and his wife in Venice Beach, and what he recently told Newsweek’s Paula Froelich is making headlines all over the nation…So how bad will things get when the economy really starts going downhill?

Presidential Candidate: I Cannot Help Myself, I Was Born This way! It’s Gods Fault – Blasphemy!
I am here speaking of self-professed sodomite Christian (No such thing -The Lord and the Devil are not united) Mayor Pete Buttigieg, who is unabashedly and unashamedly running for the President of the United States of America. You see, Pete is one that has taken part in what no man has ever in the history of mankind has, in daring the justice of God. They resort to “we were born this way, and we cannot help ourselves, it is Gods fault.”

Army vet-turned jihadi arrested for mass ISIS terror bomb plot in Calif.
The FBI was tipped off to Domingo’s actions when they discovered his online postings where he shared his loyalty to ISIS, his willingness to commit jihad, and called for revenge for the mosque attacks. “America needs another vegas event …[to] give them a taste of the terror they gladly spread all over the world,” Domingo wrote of the Oct. 2017 mass shooting at the Route 91 concert in Las Vegas.

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster Will Sign Bill Banning Abortions When Baby’s Heartbeat Begins
Pro-life Gov. Henry McMaster of South Carolina promised Thursday to sign a bill banning abortions after an unborn baby’s heartbeat is detectable. Following the lead of Georgia and other states, the South Carolina House passed the bill Wednesday in a 70-31 vote.

‘The moment is now’: Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido leads military uprising
Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido has taken to the streets with detained activist Leopoldo Lopez and a small contingent of heavily armed soldiers in a military uprising. “This is the moment of all Venezuelans, those in uniform and those who aren’t,” said Lopez in his first public appearance since being detained in 2014 for leading anti-government protests. “Everyone should come to the streets, in peace.”

IDF reduces Gaza fishing zone after rocket from Palestinian Islamic Jihad
The IDF will reduce the fishing zone around the Gaza Strip to six nautical miles on Tuesday following the launch of a missile by Palestinian Islamic Jihad on Monday night , the military announced. According to IDF Spokesperson Brig.-Gen. Ronen Manelis, Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) launched from the al-Attra neighborhood of Beit Lahiya in northern Gaza Strip towards into the Mediterranean sea.

Iran seeks way around US sanctions with non-dollar trade
Iran’s Ambassador to London attended a recent meeting where he discussed the use of Europe’s Instrument for Trade and Exchanges (INSTEX) to continue trade despite US sanctions. In the works since the US walked away from the JCPOA Iran Deal, the concept was created by Germany, France and the UK in January. Iranian state media now says INSTEX is ready to conduct transactions.

Rare snowstorm hits Chicago, breaking 109-year-old snow record
An unusually strong late-season snowstorm hit parts of United States on April 27 and 28, 2019, dropping heavy snow and causing hundreds of flights to be canceled.

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster Will Sign Bill Banning Abortions When Baby’s Heartbeat Begins
Pro-life Gov. Henry McMaster of South Carolina promised Thursday to sign a bill banning abortions after an unborn baby’s heartbeat is detectable.

Black Monday: South African Farmers Demonstrate Outside U.S. Embassy to Bring Awareness on Epidemic of Farm Attacks and Murder
South Africans demonstrated outside the U.S. embassy in Pretoria Monday, April 29th to raise awareness of the epidemic of farm attacks and murders. There were 13 farm attacks and 3 gruesome murders over the Easter weekend alone.

Adolf Hitler’s Inspiration For The Concentration Camps Was Henry Ford, His Auto Assembly Line, And His Shared Hatred Of The Jewish People
Now imagine, if you can, that you are the person that inspired Adolf Hitler to conceive and then carry this plan out. Can’t do it? I don’t blame you, I can’t either. But American automaker, Ford founder Henry Ford was that inspiration for Hitler. How can this be, you say? It happened because Henry Ford, millionaire industrialist, was also a rabid Jew-hater, and started a newspaper to spread his peculiar brand of antisemitism to the world at large.

NASA Prepares For “Asteroid Apocalypse” With “Planetary Defense” Simulation
NASA is going to be using a simulation of an “asteroid apocalypse” in order to help the space agency prepare for the cataclysmic event. And they are taking it seriously, as disaster planners from FEMA will join NASA for a dress rehearsal of doomsday.

Mexico to Deport 186 Central American Migrants from Shelters near Texas
Mexican authorities began the removal of 186 Central American migrants, including women and children, from this border city. The migrants were sent to Mexico City to board flights to their respective home countries.

The Weather Channel Faces a Storm of Its Own
On April 18, 2019, an unknown ransomware variant knocked The Weather Channel off the air. Fortunately, the interruption time was minimal, totaling approximately 99 minutes. While services were offline, the network played a prerecorded program until they were able to restore their systems.

“Massive” Herpes Outbreak Reported At Coachella Music Festival
People attending the Coachella Music Festival this year are picking up much more than “good vibes” – they are also picking up herpes. According to the herpes tracking app “HerpAlert” there has been a massive outbreak of the sexually transmitted disease in California which is believed to be associated with the Coachella Music Festival.

Sri Lanka Bans Burka for ‘National Security’ Following Easter Sunday Bombings
In the wake of the Easter Sunday bombings, which left hundreds dead after Islamic terrorists targetted Christian worshippers, Sri Lanka has banned all “face coverings” – including burkas and veils – for “national security” reasons, according to reports.

All You Need To Know About The US Measles Outbreak
The United States has recorded a whopping 695 cases of measles in 22 states, its largest outbreak since public health officials in 2000 declared the disease “eradicated” apparently rather prematurely.

Annihilation of Christian Life and People: Where is the Outrage in the West?
Islamic extremists have seen that the West has not mobilized to prevent them from repressing Christians, as if unconsciously there were a strange convergence between our silence and the ethnic cleansing project of the Islamic State, aimed at erasing Christians.

Combat Vet Who Stopped The Synagogue Shooter: ‘I Scared The Hell Out Of Him’
The man who fired a semi-automatic weapon inside the Chabad of Poway synagogue in San Diego on Saturday froze, dropped his gun and sprinted to his car when he saw Oscar Stewart come barreling toward him, yelling so loud the priest at a neighboring church could hear.

Headlines – 4/30/2019

PA: Form coalition against the ‘Deal of the Century’

How tech is bringing Israelis and Palestinians together

Palestinians Continue to Reject All Israeli-collected Tax Funds, Warn of Economy’s Collapse

Rocket Launched From Gaza Falls in Israel’s Territorial Waters

After cartoon uproar, Israel’s US envoy calls NY Times a ‘cesspool of hostility’

New York Times Prints Another Anti-Israel Cartoon Amid Antisemitism Scandal Rocking Newspaper

UN chief demands that the world step up to stamp out hatred

ISIS leader Baghdadi makes first video appearance in 5 years, emphasizes group’s global reach

US: ISIS leaders to be ‘delivered justice’ after al-baghdadi videotape

Baghdadi is back, but can he salvage ISIS?

Iran says US sanctions on its oil industry will damage market stability

Iranian general: We won’t talk to US under pressure of sanctions

Can Iran close the Strait of Hormuz? Tehran threatens to shut off waterway to one of the world’s most important shipping channels

Sudan’s military, opposition discuss powers of joint council, say sources

Mattis ignored orders from Trump, White House on North Korea, Iran: report

FBI Says It Thwarted Planned ‘Mass Murder’ Terror Attack by War Veteran in Los Angeles

US army vet accused of plotting terror attacks on Nazis, Jews in California

France says it has foiled terrorist act, suspects held in custody

Rod Rosenstein, U.S. deputy attorney general who appointed Mueller, submits resignation

AG William Barr is poised to face grilling over report

Pelosi: Trump obstructing justice ‘on a daily basis’ amid standoff over Barr testimony

Trump team sues Deutsche Bank and Capital One to keep them from turning over financial records to Congress

Trump’s lack of cooperation with Congress sparks impeachment push in House

Tech Lobbyists Push to Defang California’s Landmark Privacy Law

Melting Snow May Have Caused Earthquakes in Mammoth Lakes Area, Research Shows

6.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Carlsberg Ridge

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Tual, Indonesia

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Tinogasta, Argentina

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Visokoi Island, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 29,000ft

Reventador volcano in Ecuador erupts to 17,000ft

Fuego volcano in Guatemala erupts to 15,000ft

Agung volcano in Indonesia erupts to 15,000ft

UN gives Mozambique $13 million for Cyclone Kenneth damage

Massive floods hit Ottawa – breaking all-time high water records, Canada

Pakistan suspends polio vaccine drive after health worker attacks

Surge in US measles cases leads to extraordinary measures

Measles Scare Delays Flight to NYC; JetBlue Accused of Profiling Orthodox Boy

Fight Over Religious Exemption For Vaccinations Heats Up in Albany

Our antibiotics are no match for superbugs, and it’s a ‘global crisis,’ UN report says

United Methodist Court Upholds Ban on LGBTQ Clergy, Same Sex Marriage

Apostasy Watch Daily News

ike Ratliff – The sword that divides

Social Justice and Biblical Christianity Are Incompatible: Here’s Why, Part 2

Jesus teach me Yoga – Bethel’s holy yoga

XXXchurch Pastor Craig Gross promotes ‘Christian Cannabis,’ says weed makes it easier to worship

Hocus Misfocus: How False Teachers Make Errors Appear Respectable, Safe, and True

Pope Francis Sends Money to Help Support Migrant Caravans Trying to Enter the U.S.

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“A simple layman armed with Scripture is to be believed above a pope or a council without it…” – Martin Luther


April 30 Recipients of His Riches

Scripture reading: Ephesians 3:14–21

Key verse: Romans 9:23

That He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He had prepared beforehand for glory.

The apostle Paul wrote the book of Ephesians as a practical guide to the Christian life. It provides rich insight into our position in Christ, the advantages of that relationship, and instructions for protecting ourselves from the enemy’s snares.

However, Paul knew that some of the enemy’s ploys would leak through to engage us in a spiritual battle. A much-used subtlety of Satan is to blind us to the truth of God concerning our heritage in Christ and the riches He has stored up for us.

Paul’s purpose in writing to the Ephesians was to get them to grasp the truth of their position in Christ. He knew once they understood their relationship to God through Jesus Christ, they would begin to live in the power that was theirs through the Holy Spirit. God never meant for us to limp along as wounded Christians struggling to gain victory in life.

The world is in constant competition for wealth and riches in hopes of finding purpose and true meaning. God deposited the unfathomable riches of heaven to your account the moment you placed your trust in His Son. Ask Him to help you claim all He has for you today.

Father, thank You for the unfathomable riches of heaven that You have deposited into my account. I want to claim all You have for me today![1]

[1] Stanley, C. F. (2000). Into His presence (p. 125). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

April 30, 2019 Afternoon Verse Of The Day

3. And many people shall go. In the former verse he had slightly noticed the reason why Mount Zion would hold so high a rank. It was because all nations would flow to it, as if the rivers were overflowing through the great abundance of waters. He now makes the same statement, and assigns the reason; for it might be asked why various nations flocked to it in crowds from distant lands. He says, therefore, that the desire of serving God was their motive.

The word רבים, (rabbim,) many, implies a contrast; for it means that there will not be, as formerly, but one nation which devotes itself to the worship of the true God, but that those who formerly were strangers and foreigners (Eph. 2:19) will come into the same agreement with them about religion; as if he had said that the Church, which had formerly been, as it were, shut up in a corner, would now be collected from every quarter. By the word many he meant various; for unquestionably he did not intend to weaken the force of what he had said a little before about all nations. Now, though this was never fulfilled, that the nations of the whole world, each of them leaving their native country, made a journey into Judea; yet, because the doctrine of the gospel, by which God hath gathered to himself a Church indiscriminately out of all nations, proceeded from Mount Zion, he justly says that they will come to it who having, with one consent of faith, embraced the covenant of eternal salvation, have been united into one Church. We must also observe the harmony between the figures of the law and that spiritual worship which began to be introduced at the coming of Christ.

And shall say, Come. By these words he first declares that the godly will be filled with such an ardent desire to spread the doctrines of religion, that every one not satisfied with his own calling and his personal knowledge will desire to draw others along with him. And indeed nothing could be more inconsistent with the nature of faith than that deadness which would lead a man to disregard his brethren, and to keep the light of knowledge choked up within his own breast. The greater the eminence above others which any man has received from his calling, so much the more diligently ought he to labour to enlighten others.

This points out to us also the ordinary method of collecting a Church, which is, by the outward voice of men; for though God might bring each person to himself by a secret influence, yet he employs the agency of men, that he may awaken in them an anxiety about the salvation of each other. By this method he likewise strengthens their mutual attachment, and puts to the test their willingness to receive instruction, when every one permits himself to be taught by others.

Next Isaiah shows that those who take upon them the office of teaching and exhorting should not sit down and command others, but should join and walk along with them as companions; as we see that some men are very severe instructors, and eager to urge others forward, who yet do not move a step. But here believers, instead of addressing to their brethren the command, Go up, rather lead the way by their own example. This is the true method, therefore, of profitable teaching, when, by actually performing what we demand, we make it evident that we speak with sincerity and earnestness.

And he will teach us in his ways. He shows, first, that God cannot be worshipped aright until we have been enlightened by doctrine; and, secondly, that God is the only teacher of the Church, on whose lips we ought to hang. Hence it follows that nothing is less acceptable to God than certain foolish and erring services which men call devotion; and likewise, that though he employs the agency of men in teaching, still he reserves this as his own right, that they must utter nothing but his word. Had this rule been followed by those who called themselves teachers of the Church, religion would not have been so shamefully corrupted by a wide and confused diversity of superstitions. Nor is it possible that we shall not be carried away into various errors, where we are tossed about by the opinions of men. Justly, therefore, does Isaiah, when he claims for God alone the power and authority to teach the Church, shut the mouths of all mortals; so that the office of teaching is committed to pastors for no other purpose than that God alone may be heard there. Let those who wish to be reckoned ministers of Christ allow themselves to be regulated by this statement, that they may take nothing away from his authority.

The Hebrew words ויורנו מדרכיו (vĕyorēnū midderāchāiv) may be literally rendered, he will teach us of his ways; which means, “He will show us what his ways are,” or, he will set before us his ways for a perfect instruction.

Next he adds obedience, we will walk in his paths; by which he points out both the object and the result; for the instruction which is delivered to us from the mouth of the Lord is not mere speculation, but directs the course of our life, and leads us to obey him. But we ought also to observe, that the commandments of God are called ways and paths, in order to inform us that they go miserably astray who turn aside from them in the smallest degree. Thus every kind of unlawful liberty is restrained, and all men, from the least even to the greatest, are enjoined to observe this rule of obedience, that they keep themselves within the limits of the word of God.

For out of Zion shall go forth the law. This is an explanation of the former verse, in which he said that Mount Zion will be placed above all mountains; that is, that she will be raised to the highest pitch of honour, when she shall become the fountain of saving doctrine, which shall flow out over the whole world. He calls it the law; but we have elsewhere spoken of the derivation and meaning of this word; for תורה (tōrāh) means instruction, and the most complete of all kinds of instruction is contained in the law. He speaks, therefore, after the manner of the prophets; for since the rule of godliness was to be obtained from the law, they were wont, by a figure of speech, (synecdoche,) in which a part is taken for the whole, to include under the word law all the instruction which God has given; just as under the word altar they include the whole worship of God.

Now, since we know that this prediction was fulfilled, when the preaching of the gospel began at that very place, (for Christ first taught at Jerusalem, and afterwards his doctrine was spread throughout the whole world,) we must not take the word law in a limited sense; for at that time, as to its figures and bondage, it was rather abolished. (Luke 2:46; Mark 16:15; Ezek. 47:1; Luke 24:47.) Hence we conclude that the term is applied, without limitation, to the word of God. And when the prophets say that waters will spring out of the temple to water the whole world, (Ezek. 47:1,) they express metaphorically what Isaiah lays down in plain language; namely, that the source of saving doctrine will be from that place; for out of it the apostles and other teachers spread the gospel through the whole world.

We must observe the reason why the Prophet made these statements. It was, that he might fortify the godly against various changes, which otherwise, on manifold occasions, might have crushed their minds; and therefore it was of great importance to provide against offences, and to fortify the minds of the godly. “Whatever may be the condition of your affairs, and though you should be oppressed by afflictions on all sides, still continue to cherish this assured hope, that the law will go forth out of Zion, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem; for this is an infallible decree of God, which no diversity or change of events will make void.”

How much the godly needed this consolation may be easily inferred from the course of events which immediately followed; for when Judea had been forsaken, the temple destroyed, the worship of God overturned, and the comely order of the Church utterly defaced, while tyranny became more and more oppressive, it was natural that their minds should be discouraged, and that all hope should be thrown away. On the other hand, after the return of the Jews from Babylon, when dreadful superstitions gradually obtained prevalence, and the priests, instead of discharging their office in a lawful manner, grasped at wicked tyranny, what else could have occurred to the minds of the godly than that religion had fallen into neglect, and that the worship of God was entirely laid aside, if they had not been supported by this promise? For there can be no doubt that this temptation, which arose out of internal vices, was more injurious than their banishment into Babylon. So long as they were exiles, they had at least prophets, by whose instruction they were encouraged; but in that state of corruption the good effect of instruction had been lost, and no regard was paid to religion or godliness. But by the aid of this prediction alone the Lord granted to them the support which they needed. For why had the law, which God appeared to have consecrated for himself in his own habitation, been thrown down and basely trampled under foot? Who, then, would have thought not only that it would have a place there, but that it would also reign in all foreign places, and in the most distant regions? On the other hand, the Prophet declares not only that the law will remain in its place, but that it will travel further; by which he means that it will not be confined within its former boundaries, for it will be proclaimed to the Gentiles without distinction.

And undoubtedly this had very great authority and weight with the Apostles, when they knew that they were appointed to perform those things which are here promised. Otherwise they would never have had courage enough to venture to undertake the office, and, in short, would not have been able to endure the burden, especially when the whole world furiously opposed them. But they knew that he by whom this had been promised, and from whom they had received authority to deliver this message, would easily remove every obstacle. It ought also to be observed that we obtain from it a strong confirmation of our faith, when we learn that the doctrine of the gospel came forth out of Zion; because we thence conclude that it is not new, or lately sprung up, but that it is the eternal truth of God, of which a testimony had been given in all ages before it was brought to light.

We also infer that it was necessary that all the ancient ceremonies should be abolished, and that a new form of teaching should be introduced, though the substance of the doctrine continue to be the same; for the law formerly proceeded out of Mount Sinai, (Exod. 19:20,) but now it proceeded out of Zion, and therefore it assumed a new form. Two things, therefore, must be observed; first, that the doctrine of God is the same, and always agrees with itself; that no one may charge God with changeableness, as if he were inconsistent; and though the law of the Lord be now the same that it ever was, yet it came out of Zion with a new garment; secondly, when ceremonies and shadows had been abolished, Christ was revealed, in whom the reality of them is perceived.[1]

2:3 By quoting the people’s words, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, Isaiah vividly depicts their regenerated hearts, since the unregenerate do not seek God (Rom. 3:11). In OT times, only Israel went up to Mount Zion. But in the kingdom age, all nations go up to the glorious temple. Today the Lord Jesus has authority over all nations and gives eternal life to those who trust in Him (Matt. 28:18–20; John 17:2). When the fullness of the Gentiles has come in during this present age (Rom. 11:1–17), the literal dimensions of this present passage will be fulfilled. Then Israel will be grafted in again, and then the nations will come to Zion. Then the teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ, as King of the earth, will flow from Jerusalem as a beautiful, life-giving nectar.[2]

2:3 — “ … He will teach us His ways, and we shall walk in His paths .… ”

God designed a life of faith to be a community affair. He teaches us His ways, so that we can walk in His paths. If you’re trying to go it alone in your faith, you’ll never grow as God wants you to.[3]

2:3 mountain of the Lord. Isaiah frequently calls Mt. Zion the “holy mountain” (11:9; 27:13; 56:7; 57:13; 65:11, 25; 66:20).[4]

2:3 out of Zion. Out of Zion alone; the Gentiles will abandon all other religions for the true God.[5]

2:3 may he teach us part of his ways Judah has turned away from God’s teaching, but one day all the nations will seek it eagerly.

The Hebrew word for “teach” is a verbal form of the word “Torah,” meaning “law” or “instruction.” The book of Proverbs teaches that right living comes from following God’s ways or moral and ethical principles for living (Prov 3:6; 20:24).

instruction shall go out from Zion Divine decrees originated on God’s holy mountain. Similarly, Canaanite mythology has Baal issuing decrees from Mount Zaphon. See note on Isa 1:8; note on v. 2.[6]

2:3 let us go. They encourage one another to worship God from regenerate hearts (John 3:3–8).

out of Zion. The prophet proclaims the new era in which Jews and Gentiles will serve one King (11:10–12; 27:13; 56:3–8; 66:19–23). Zion, or Jerusalem, stands for God’s throne (1:8 note).[7]

2:3 The “law” here is not the ritual or ceremonial law, but God’s design for righteousness.[8]

2:3 The vision anticipates a day when not only Israel but all the nations will stream toward this mountain that represents the presence of God on earth. God had promised Abraham that he would bless the nations through his descendants (Gn 12:1–3). Today the church is composed of people from many different nations who have aligned themselves with God through faith in Christ, thus fulfilling this vision in at least a preliminary way.[9]

[1] Calvin, J., & Pringle, W. (2010). Commentary on the Book of the Prophet Isaiah (Vol. 1, pp. 93–98). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

[2] Radmacher, E. D., Allen, R. B., & House, H. W. (1999). Nelson’s new illustrated Bible commentary (p. 808). Nashville: T. Nelson Publishers.

[3] Stanley, C. F. (2005). The Charles F. Stanley life principles Bible: New King James Version (Is 2:3). Nashville, TN: Nelson Bibles.

[4] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (2006). The MacArthur study Bible: New American Standard Bible. (Is 2:3). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[5] Crossway Bibles. (2008). The ESV Study Bible (p. 1243). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

[6] Barry, J. D., Mangum, D., Brown, D. R., Heiser, M. S., Custis, M., Ritzema, E., … Bomar, D. (2012, 2016). Faithlife Study Bible (Is 2:3). Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

[7] Sproul, R. C. (Ed.). (2005). The Reformation Study Bible: English Standard Version (p. 953). Orlando, FL; Lake Mary, FL: Ligonier Ministries.

[8] Criswell, W. A., Patterson, P., Clendenen, E. R., Akin, D. L., Chamberlin, M., Patterson, D. K., & Pogue, J. (Eds.). (1991). Believer’s Study Bible (electronic ed., Is 2:3). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[9] Longman, T., III. (2017). Isaiah. In E. A. Blum & T. Wax (Eds.), CSB Study Bible: Notes (p. 1044). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.

April 30 Living the Crucified Life

scripture reading: Romans 7:5–25
key verse: Romans 7:6

Now we have been delivered from the law, having died to what we were held by, so that we should serve in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the letter.

Before salvation, you were captive to the sin of envy—wanting what you could not have, desiring what others had. After salvation, you still experience the same problem, but you are all the more miserable because you realize God condemns the sin of covetousness.

The path to victory lies in the purpose and work of the Cross. Because you were crucified with Christ, you are no longer enslaved to sin. Envy has no claim on your new life lived in the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit.

You have been raised with Christ—made a partaker of His resurrection power. By faith in what God accomplished by the Cross, you can put on the new person—alive to God, filled with the Spirit, made in the image of God.

Living the crucified life is a bold act of faith. You may feel envious and be mentally assaulted by it. But now with Christ in you and you in Christ, you have a new source of power to cope with the problem. You can overcome; you can conquer; you can be content.

It is supernatural living—to be experienced, not understood—as you choose to present yourself and your affections to Christ each day as one alive from the dead.

Jealousy and envy have no place in my new life, Lord. Make me content. I want to live the crucified life.[1]

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

30 april (preached 29 april 1860) 365 Days with Spurgeon

The beginning, increase, and end of the divine life

“Though thy beginning was small, yet thy latter end should greatly increase.” Job 8:7

suggested further reading: 2 Corinthians 13:5–9

If thou art saved—though the date be erased—yet do thou rejoice and triumph evermore in the Lord thy God. True, there are some of us who can remember the precise spot where we first found the Saviour. The day will never be forgotten when these eyes looked to the cross of Christ and found their tears all wiped away. But thousands in the fold of Jesus know not when they were brought in; be it enough for them to know they are there. Let them feed upon the pasture, let them lie down beside the still waters, for whether they came by night or by day they did not come at a forbidden hour. Whether they came in youth or in old age, it matters not; all times are acceptable with God, “and whosoever cometh,” come he when he may, “he will in no wise cast out.” Does it not strike you as being very foolish reasoning if you should say in your heart, “I am not converted because I do not know when?” Nay, with such reasoning as that, I could prove that old Rome was never built, because the precise date of her building is unknown; nay, we might declare that the world was never made, for its exact age even the geologist cannot tell us. We might prove that Jesus Christ himself never died, for the precise date on which he expired on the tree is lost beyond recovery; nor doth it signify much to us. We know the world was made, we know that Christ did die, and so you—if you are now reconciled to God, if now your trembling arms are cast around that cross, you too are saved—though the beginning was so small that you cannot tell when it was. Indeed, in living things, it is hard to put the finger upon the beginning.

for meditation: An ongoing Christ-experience in the present without a crisis experience in the past is far more valid than an isolated crisis experience in the past without the evidence of an ongoing Christ-experience in the present.

sermon no. 311[1]

[1] Spurgeon, C. H., & Crosby, T. P. (1998). 365 Days with Spurgeon (Volume 1) (p. 127). Leominster, UK: Day One Publications.

30 APRIL 365 Days with Calvin

Obeying at All Cost

Then they said to Jeremiah, The Lord be a true and faithful witness between us, if we do not even according to all things for the which the Lord thy God shall send thee to us. Whether it be good, or whether it be evil, we will obey the voice of the Lord our God, to whom we send thee; that it may be well with us, when we obey the voice of the Lord our God. Jeremiah 42:5–6

suggested further reading: Hebrews 11:1–10

Jeremiah acts as a kind of mediator here, addressing the people in God’s name as though he has been sent from heaven. The people respond by saying they will do whatever God commands. They say even more emphatically: Whether it be good, or whether it be evil, we will obey the voice of the Lord our God.

In saying this, the people do not suggest that God’s word is wrong or in any way unjust; rather, they use the word good in the sense of being joyful, and evil as being sad or grievous. They ask for nothing more than that God will declare to them what pleases him, to which they will be so submissive that they will refuse him nothing, even if it is contrary to the flesh.

If this declaration proceeds from the heart, it is a testimony of true piety; for the minds of the godly ought so to be framed as to obey God without making any exception, whether he commands what is contrary to their purpose or leads them where they do not wish to go. By contrast, those who wish to make an agreement with God, saying he should require nothing but what is agreeable to them, show that they do not know what it means to serve God.

True obedience of faith requires that we renounce our desires and do not set up our own arguments and wishes against the Word of God. We do not object to what God requires of us, saying it is too hard or not quite agreeable to us. So whether it is good or evil, meaning agreeable to or contrary to the feelings of the flesh, we ought to embrace what God requires and commands. This is the foundational measure of true religion.

for meditation: When God commands us to do something unpleasant, we often try to excuse ourselves from that particular duty, demonstrating the insincerity of our promise. Let us instead strive for the obedience of faith that Calvin talks about and renounce our selfish thoughts.[1]

[1] Calvin, J., & Beeke, J. R. (2008). 365 Days with Calvin (p. 139). Leominster; Grand Rapids, MI: Day One Publications; Reformation Heritage Books.

Brannon Howse: April 29, 2019 | Worldview Weekend

Guest: Jim Simpson. Topic: Another shooting at a Jewish synagogue and this time it is in San Diego. Topic: Jim joins us today to discuss a new paper he has written for the Center For Security Policy regarding the war on those that speak truth. Topic: Jim explains the connection between Putin of Russia and the groups working to silence conservatives. Topic: We take your calls.   

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