Daily Archives: June 21, 2019

June 21 The Reward of Faith

Scripture Reading: Luke 4:35–41

Key Verse: Matthew 14:27

But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.”

Jesus had sent His disciples on ahead to Bethsaida. They had crossed the Sea of Galilee with trepidation. As skilled fishermen, they could tell that the cool air on their faces preceded a storm front. The volatile air currents would soon clash and a violent tempest would erupt—something they had learned to dread.

In the dead of night, the torrents of rain started. Even with their seasoned experience, the tossing seas and whipping winds were daunting. Just when it seemed as if they would die, a ghostly figure approached their boat by walking on the water.

When was the last time you were overcome with fear? Do you remember how you felt? Right now, you may be facing a fearful situation. Perhaps you feel as though you are barely surviving the tempest blows, and your faith is being confronted with a terrifying unknown. Matthew 14:27 reports that Jesus told them not to be afraid. This is Christ’s message to you. Augustine writes, “Faith is to believe what you do not yet see; the reward for this faith is to see what you believe.” You may not understand how God will deliver you, but you can be sure that He will.

Take courage! Believe that He will calm the raging storm surrounding you, and you will witness the clouds breaking apart.

I believe, Lord, even though I cannot see. Give me courage. Calm the raging storm around me.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (2006). Pathways to his presence (p. 180). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

June 21 Profiting from Suffering

Scripture Reading: 1 Peter 4:12–16

Key Verse: 1 Peter 5:10

May the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.

The best way to deal with suffering is to set your eyes on Jesus, not your circumstances. Most of us have little problem following Christ when things are going well, but at the first sign of a storm we instinctively run for cover.

After Jesus calmed the raging winds, He turned to His disciples and asked, “Why did you doubt?” No one knows the length and depth of suffering. However, we know from Scripture that God wants us to place our entire trust in Him during times of difficulty and heartache.

You may be struggling with a burden that has endured for years. You are tired, doubtful, and angry. Satan is tempting you to give up, but God has not given up on you.

Remember, His purpose for allowing suffering is to mold and shape you into the image of His Son. And nothing so sands and polishes a saint like the fiery trials of adversity.

Peter said, “After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you” (1 Peter 5:10 nasb).

Let nothing keep you from trusting Him, no matter how great the winds of affliction. Sink your roots deep into the grace and love of Christ.

Master, when I am tempted to give up, help me remember that You have not given up on me. Conform me to the image of Your Son. Sand and polish my life through the trials of adversity.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (1999). On holy ground (p. 180). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Jordan: DHS Data Shows High Numbers Of Criminal Illegal Migrants In Caravans | ZeroHedge News

Via SaraCarter.com,

The Department of Homeland Security released data to the House Oversight and Reform Committee revealing a significant number of illegal migrants attempting to enter the United States have criminal histories, to include aggravated assault and three individuals convicted of murder.

In a letter released Thursday ranking Republican Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, asked DHS Acting Secretary Kevin K. McAleenan to provide to the committee detailed criminal history on all the migrants in the January, 2019 caravan and the October 2018 caravan. He asked that the information be delivered to the committee no later than July 5.

The data – which included internal documents and analysis – was collected by U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

“Data provided to the Committee shows that hundreds of migrants approaching the southern border have criminal histories,” said Jordan.

The committee has also requested  an “update of CBP’s monitoring of several groups of 1,000 to 4,000 migrants in the Mexican states of Chiapas and Veracruz, including a summary of migrants with criminal records.”

Former ICE Director Tom Homan, who President Trump announced as his pick to be appointed to the new position of Border Czar, said approximately 20 percent on average of those arrested illegally crossing the border have criminal histories.

“These are people who are not only violating our U.S. immigration laws but violating our criminal penal code,” Homan told SaraACarter.com.

Further, Jordan and committee Republicans are asking for all “daily summaries of ICE HSI Office of Intelligence’s Human Smuggling Cell (HSC) referring or relating to the repatriation of caravan members with an extensive criminal record, U.S. full extradition warrants, and INTERPOL notices for extradition since May 1, 2014.”

Trump issued a national emergency proclamation in February, stating that the “southern border is a major entry point for criminals, gang members, and illicit narcotics” threatening “core national security interests.”

The documents produced to the committee thus far reveal the following information:

  • In October 2018, CBP’s Office of Intelligence (OI) tracked one caravan estimated to include nearly 8,000 individuals that arrived south of California in December 2018. ICE Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) established that 660 of these individuals had U.S. criminal convictions—nearly 40 were convicted of assault or aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. Three individuals were convicted of murder.
  • In January 2019, CBP OI tracked a caravan that departed Honduras with more than 3,300 individuals. ICE HSI identified 860 individuals with U.S. criminal histories, including over 20 convicted of assault or aggravated assault with a deadly weapon early 30 convicted of sexual offenses, two convicted of violence against law enforcement, and one convicted of attempted murder.

Full letter below:

Source: Jordan: DHS Data Shows High Numbers Of Criminal Illegal Migrants In Caravans

No, AOC, those are not ‘concentration camps’. Enough with Hitler already!

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez keeps insisting that detention centers for illegal immigrants are somehow ‘concentration camps.’ Arguably, the only thing worse than wanting open borders is comparing everything to Hitler.

Source: No, AOC, those are not ‘concentration camps’. Enough with Hitler already!

Pope Calls for New Catholic Theological Curriculum – Teaching Students to View Muslims as Brothers — The Gateway Pundit

Pope calls on faithful to be as blind to real life dangers as he is.

This guy is a continued clown show. When he’s not pushing global warming and open borders, he’s pushing partnership and brotherhood with Islam.
God save your church!

Robert Spencer has fun with this one.

Meanwhile…
Radical Islam has its own plans.

ABC News reported:

Pope Francis called Friday for a reform of the way theology is taught in Catholic schools, saying students must learn about dialogue with Judaism and Islam, and that overall there must be greater freedom in theological research and academic pursuits.

The Jesuit pope made the call during a speech at the Jesuit-run theology university in Naples. It follows his outreach this year to the Muslim world with the signing of a joint statement with the imam of Cairo’s Al Azhar, the seat of Sunni learning, establishing the relationship between Catholics and Muslims as brothers, with a common mission to promote peace.

In his speech, Francis said dialogue and partnership with the Muslim world is necessary “to build a peaceful existence, even when there are the troublesome episodes by fanatic enemies of dialogue.”

Catholic theology students must learn the culture, language and way of thinking of Jews and Muslims “to better understand and live out our relationship,” he said.

After the theologically doctrinaire papacies of St. John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI, Francis has stressed instead the need to “walk together” with interfaith partners, often joking that theologians should ruminate on a deserted island while religious leaders press ahead with dialogue on the ground. He has also called for a more pastoral, merciful and conscience-driven approach to sticky theological problems, such as Communion for the civilly remarried.

via Pope Calls for New Catholic Theological Curriculum – Teaching Students to View Muslims as Brothers — The Gateway Pundit

Why is America so much more prosperous than other nations?

WINTERY KNIGHT

It occurred to me that young people are being taught in government-run schools that central planning of the economy by the federal government works better than allowing states to decide policy for themselves. Naturally, the students – lacking life experience and at the mercy of the unionized teacher’s grading pen – have no choice except to be indoctrinated. But what are the facts?

The genius of America is that the Founding Fathers allowed the federal government to only have power in certain areas of life. Other areas of policy were delegated to the states. This allows states to try different policies to see what works best, or even just what works best for them. Then the other states have the option to emulate that success, or continue doing what doesn’t work. States that do what works will see more success, with more businesses and people migrating to their states. States…

View original post 1,067 more words

Congress Members To Wear Barcodes So Lobbyists Can Scan Prices, Self-Checkout — The Babylon Bee

WASHINGTON, D.C.—In a move to make purchasing congresspeople easier and faster for lobbyists, Congress voted to approve a new measure that calls for congresspeople to wear barcodes on their foreheads so lobbyists, activists, and corporations can simply scan them and self-checkout.

Self-checkout machines will be installed at all exits of the Capitol Building, so once they’ve added congresspeople to their cart, lobbyists can pay right on the way out.

“Purchasing congresspeople used to be a time-consuming, expensive process,” said a Planned Parenthood representative. “Now, we can simply walk through Congress, scan all the congresspeople that are for sale, and checkout without having to interact with any humans.”

“We hate humans—like, a lot,” the PP rep added.

One major military-industrial complex lobby group, Americans For Bigger Bombs, said they are also in support of the new move.

“When you need to make a quick pit stop at our nation’s legislative body to purchase a few congresspeople to start a new war, you need to do it fast,” said one AFBB lawyer. “An attack on Iran can’t wait while you wheel and deal, wine and dine, and negotiate endlessly. Now, I can just scan and go.”

via Congress Members To Wear Barcodes So Lobbyists Can Scan Prices, Self-Checkout — The Babylon Bee

COMMANDER IN CHIEF: When The Pentagon Told Him That ‘150 Will Die’ In Retaliatory Military Strike On Iran, President Trump Stood Up And Told Them To Call It Off — Now The End Begins

President Trump said he called off retaliatory strikes on three Iranian sites following the downing of a U.S. Navy drone because the action would not have been “proportionate.”

And just like that, President Trump’s stock goes soaring into the stratosphere. His actions in the heat of the downing of a US Navy drone by there terror-sponsoring state of Iran showed amazing poise, restraint and something the Liberals have always accused him of not having, presidential qualities. With his closest advisors and members of the Pentagon all telling him to strike, President Trump asked a simple question before giving his authorization for the strike. He asked “how many will die”? When he heard their answer, he simply said “no”.

“When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn.” Proverbs 29:2 (KJV)

President Trump is 100% right, the targeted killing of 150 souls is not a proper response for the downing of a Navy drone, even if that drone cost upwards of $130 million. It takes guts and courage to stand up and say no when all around you are telling  you to do it. Thank you, President Trump, for showing us what real leadership looks like.

President Trump Scrapped Iran Strikes Because They Weren’t `Proportionate’

FROM YAHOO NEWS: “We were cocked & loaded to retaliate last night on 3 different sights when I asked, how many will die. 150 people, sir, was the answer from a General,” Trump tweeted Friday. “10 minutes before the strike I stopped it.”

A commander in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps told a semi-official news agency Friday that the drone had been accompanied by a manned U.S. spy plane that Iranian forces decided not to target.

The planned U.S. attack, ordered after Iranian forces shot down a U.S. Navy drone over the Strait of Hormuz, would have involved airstrikes and was close to being carried out when it was stopped, said an administration official, who would not discuss whether the plan might still be revived. The official was granted anonymity to discuss a national security matter.

National Security Advisor John Bolton was pushing for the strike. Trump changed his mind based on some additional information, an official said. Iran was not given any warning of possible retaliation.

With tensions still high, the Iranians called the Swiss ambassador, Markus Leitner, into the Foreign Ministry for talks. The Swiss embassy also represents U.S. interests in Iran, and the Swiss envoy traditionally serves as the conduit for messages between the two nations, which have no diplomatic relations. But Brian Hook, the U.S. special representative for Iran, told reporters the Iranians “continue to reject diplomatic overtures to deescalate tensions in the region.”

In one of his Friday tweets, Trump said “I am in no hurry, our Military is rebuild, new, and ready to go, by far the best in the world.”

Airstrikes would have raised the specter of a far broader conflict in the volatile region, which supplies one-third of the world’s oil. The move and its reversal underscore the wavering approach the president has shown at times regarding military force. He has repeatedly and fiercely lashed out at Iran and North Korea, but then cooled his rhetoric when hostilities threatened to erupt into open conflict. On two occasions since he took office, he has ordered limited military strikes on Syria. READ MORE

President Trump calls off ordered strikes against Iran

Retired four-star Army Gen. David Perkins says the U.S. can’t react the way Iran wants us to after their provocations.

via COMMANDER IN CHIEF: When The Pentagon Told Him That ‘150 Will Die’ In Retaliatory Military Strike On Iran, President Trump Stood Up And Told Them To Call It Off — Now The End Begins

More: Trump Makes First Comments About Reports He Called Off Iran Airstrike At Last Minute — The Gateway Pundit

If President Trump was trying to keep it all secret, he did a very poor job.

The New York Times on Thursday night reported that Trump had approved airstrike on Iran to retaliate against their shooting down a surveillance drone, but then decided at the last minute to call off the attack.  “Planes were in the air and ships were in position, but no missiles had been fired when word came to stand down, the official said,” the Times wrote.

On Friday, Trump explained what had occurred.

“We were cocked & loaded to retaliate last night on 3 different sights when I asked, how many will die. 150 people, sir, was the answer from a General,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “10 minutes before the strike I stopped it.”

In a series of tweets he wrote:

“President Obama made a desperate and terrible deal with Iran – Gave them 150 Billion Dollars plus I.8 Billion Dollars in CASH! Iran was in big trouble and he bailed them out. Gave them a free path to Nuclear Weapons, and SOON. Instead of saying thank you, Iran yelled…..

“….Death to America. I terminated deal, which was not even ratified by Congress, and imposed strong sanctions. They are a much weakened nation today than at the beginning of my Presidency, when they were causing major problems throughout the Middle East. Now they are Bust!….

“….On Monday they shot down an unmanned drone flying in International Waters. We were cocked & loaded to retaliate last night on 3 different sights when I asked, how many will die. 150 people, sir, was the answer from a General. 10 minutes before the strike I stopped it, not….

“….proportionate to shooting down an unmanned drone. I am in no hurry, our Military is rebuilt, new, and ready to go, by far the best in the world. Sanctions are biting & more added last night. Iran can NEVER have Nuclear Weapons, not against the USA, and not against the WORLD!”

“The planned U.S. attack, ordered after Iranian forces shot down a U.S. Navy drone over the Strait of Hormuz, would have involved airstrikes and was close to being carried out when it was stopped, said an administration official, who would not discuss whether the plan might still be revived,” Bloomberg reported.

There are also reports that the U.S. drone that was shot down was actually in Iranian airspace.

“Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Seyed Abbas Araghchi said the country had ‘indisputable’ evidence the U.S. drone had violated Iranian air space, and state TV showed what it said were recovered parts of the downed aircraft. ‘The Islamic Republic of Iran would not hesitate for a moment to decisively defend its territory against any aggression,’ Araghchi said in a statement released by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday,” Bloomberg reported.

via More: Trump Makes First Comments About Reports He Called Off Iran Airstrike At Last Minute — The Gateway Pundit

Draining the Rainbow Swamp — Christian Research Network

“Vengeance is His, let’s remember. But these harmful actions need to stop. And they will if enough of us keep saying “No.” “Drag Queen 101” was cancelled recently in Delaware and Licking counties in Ohio not because of “threats” as alleged but because enough people called, wrote, and said “No.” Even brave Republican lawmakers flexed their muscles. If thinking citizens do this, they will go away. It doesn’t take much, but it does take enough of us. And all the while, we must lift up prayers for these poor lost people.”

(Linda Harvey – Mission: America)  Have you had your fill of “pride” yet?

Corporations, government agencies, online sites, schools. AT&T, Walmart, Kellogg’s, Nationwide, Ikea. I was already on rainbow overload when I opened the mail.

An unmarked letter contained a flyer listing Bible verses ( “Love your neighbor” etc.) followed by, “We’re praying for you!” and signed, “Happy Pride!”

The envelope was full of multi-colored glitter.

Which I was providentially able to contain and throw right in the trash.

Whatever god these people pray to while denying the true gospel message about homosexuality provokes no fear in me, nor in any of us who understand the truth. We are witnessing cultural destruction under the arc of these rainbow imposters, yet the original is still the Almighty’s magnificent sky symbol, reminding us of both His mercy and power.

He never intended it to be a jarring logo for proud sin, a signpost for child corruption, or the banner for targeting and harassing faithful Christians.

God destroyed the world once and will again at the end of time. How close is that? Sometimes I wonder.  View article →

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LGBTQ Agenda

via Draining the Rainbow Swamp — Christian Research Network

What is the Sinner’s Initial Repentance? — Monergism.com Blog Feed

Does Christ require the sinner to “stop sinning and you’ll be pardoned”?, or something else?

When you trust in Christ for the first time, you are trusting in Him as a Savior FROM SIN, both its guilt and power. No one “just believes” in Christ’s existence to be saved; we come to him, rather, to be rescued from sin’s tyranny. We know we can do nothing to save ourselves from sin so we (by the grace of God) turn to Christ to be rescued from it. This demonstrates, without a doubt, that at the time you trust Christ you no longer want to be under sin’s tyranny or dominion but want Christ to deliver you from it.

So in our initial repentance we are not called to “stop sinning and you’ll be pardoned.” No, rather its “Lord. I am a slave to sin, save me and break the chains of my sin and forgive. I have no hope without you” Thus, to want to be saved by Christ from sin already reveals a heart of repentance in it. Otherwise you would not want to be saved at all.

If you see faith as merely a belief in God’s existence then YES faith precedes repentance, but if you define faith as trusting in Christ as Savior from sin, then while faith and repentance can be distinguished, they cannot be separated.

Consider: For what purpose are you coming to faith in Jesus if not to be rescued from sin?

NOTE: Christ intended to pardon us prior to both our faith and repentance, so neither faith nor repentance are actually the originating cause of our pardon. Pardon was purchased in Christ’s redemption for us. The application of our redemption is when the Holy Spirit brings us into union with Christ’s death and resurrection. He regenerates us, our faith and repentance springs from our renewed heart which issues from God’s grace alone.

via What is the Sinner’s Initial Repentance? — Monergism.com Blog Feed

‘Christ Will Stand By Us’: Christian Leaders Hold Strong as Hong Kong Protests Rage — Faithwire

Throngs of Hong Kong residents have taken to the streets to protest a new extradition bill that could see arrested locals sent to mainland China to stand trial for their alleged crimes.

After seizing control of Hong Kong in the 1800s, Britain returned the city to China in 1997 with one incredibly important caveat: The city would, at least in part, govern itself for 50 years — until 2047 — before falling back under Beijing’s rule.

China, though, is an authoritative country. The communist regime leading the mainland has fought over the years to control Hong Kong, according to Vox.

The local government introduced the extradition bill after a Hong Kong national, Tong-Kai Chan, admitted to killing his pregnant girlfriend in Taiwan before fleeing back to the former British colony, where he is currently imprisoned on other charges, the Financial Times reported.

After days of intense protest, Hong Kong’s leader, Carrie Lam, who enjoys support from Beijing, issued a rare apology, admitting, “I feel deep sorrow and regret that deficiencies in our work — and various other factors — have stirred up substantial controversies.”

Opponents have called for Lam’s resignation, arguing her decision to “suspend” the pending legislation is simply not enough. Several leaders in the U.S. have also condemned the extradition bill and President Donald Trump has described the Hong Kong protesters as “very effective.”

How are Christians responding?

One of the movement’s most outspoken leaders, Joshua Wong, who was briefly imprisoned for his activism, has been outspoken about his Christian faith.

During a May interview with World magazine, Wong argued Christians aren’t tasked simply with “preaching the gospel and then waiting to go to heaven when we die.”

“We need to be bringing heaven down to earth,” he said. “That seems like a totally idealistic dream, but if we want that dream to come true, how should we let people know that, as Christians, we don’t focus only on trying to increase our salaries and better our careers? We ask, ‘How can we do more for the people around us?’”

He went on to explain authorities in mainland China are particularly fearful of Christianity because “it could influence people to realize the only one they should obey is Jesus, not the regime” and that “contradicts Chinese Communist Party propaganda.”

The Rev. Chi Wai Wu, general secretary of the Hong Kong Church Renewal Movement, said a prayer meeting outside Hong Kong’s main government complex on June 11 ended with the massive crowd singing a Christian hymn, “Sing Hallelujah to the Lord.”

The minister condemned Hong Kong authorities for using tear gas and rubber bullets to confront the largely peaceful demonstrators. With tears in his eyes, Wu said he feels “so sad” for Hong Kong.

“Will the younger generation want to be known as Hong Kong people?” he asked. “Will they love Hong Kong? We will lose the entire generation of young people.”

The Rev. Chu Yiu-Ming, another prominent dissident, told DW.com that he hopes his fellow protesters continue to “resist and fight back” against the extradition bill. Sentenced in April for his role in similar protests against Beijing in 2014, Chu was responsible earlier this month for leading protesters as they sang the Christian hymn.

Another Christian leader, Bishop Joseph Ha Chi-shing, vowed to stay near the protesters and pray with and for them for as long as they continued to demonstrate, according to UCA News.

“No matter how long they stay, I will continue to stay with them,” he said. “The shepherd should not just be with the sheep but also guide them.”

Ha also took the opportunity to remind protesters they are Christians first, before anything else, and must act in accordance to their faith — even in their anger and fear.

“Although we won this battle, we need to continue to use peace, love and justice to arouse society,” the bishop said, “and Christ will stand by us.”

via ‘Christ Will Stand By Us’: Christian Leaders Hold Strong as Hong Kong Protests Rage — Faithwire

CHRISLAM UPDATE: Pope Francis Calls For Major Theological Reforms In Catholic Schools In Order To Promote ‘Common Mission’ With Islam And Muslims — Now The End Begins

Pope Francis has issued a Chrislam call for reform within “the way theology is taught in Catholic schools, saying students must learn about dialogue with Judaism and Islam” and establish “the relationship between Catholics and Muslims as brothers, with a common mission to promote peace.”

We have been showing you for years now how Pope Francis has been working double overtime to bring Islam and the muslims in under the umbrella of  Vatican City and the Catholic Church. We showed you how back in February the pope signed a “universal declaration of brotherhood” with the grand imam Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb that didn’t include even a single mention of the name of Jesus Christ. We have been showing you over, and over and over again how this pope is forming an end times alliance with Islam. This article today, however, takes this effort to a whole new level.

“And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived. And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth.” Revelation 18:4,23,24 (KJV)

It was only a matter of time before Pope Francis turned his attention to creating a new Catholic school curriculum, one that will present Islam as a ‘religion of peace‘ instead of the vile and corrupt ideology that it really is. More and more, Pope Francis is looking like he truly is the prophesied False Prophet of Revelation 13, or better yet, maybe he’s the Antichrist. Whatever he is, Jorge Mario Bergoglio is a liar, a deceiver and a major end times player, and Chrislam will be his One World Religion.

Pope Francis calls for theological reforms in Catholic schools to promote “common mission of peace” with Islam, we that Chrislam

FROM JIHAD WATCH: Christianity already consists of the Old Testament (Judaism) and the New Testament. In the Christian tradition, the Messiah is already deemed to be Jewish “of the House of David”, so increasing dialogue with Judaism is promoting a deeper understanding of the roots of Christianity. Beyond this, increasing dialogue with any faith group is a good thing, once it is based on mutual values and truth.

Islam is very different. It teaches that “the vilest of animals in Allah’s sight are those who have disbelieved” (Quran 8:55) and because of such doctrine,  complete loyalty to Islam and disavowal of disbelievers is foundational.  The oneness of God (Tawhid) and the supremacy of the sharia are also foundational. In Islam real Muslims must fully and completely reject disbelievers and un-Islamic practices Further, the world is divided in two in Islamic doctrine: The House of War and the House of Islam where it is the duty of Muslim believers to subjugate the House of War and wage jihad against it until it becomes the House of Islam. If such beliefs were not abundantly manifested today, there would be no problem, but a day does not go by without news of Islamic supremacist abuse and persecution, in accordance with written doctrine to subjugate and advance Islam.

The Pope is pushing for Catholic students to be taught the lie that normative Islam is a religion of peace and so, it follows that anyone who disagrees with this lie would be deemed “intolerant”, opposed to dialogue and  pluralism. It is Islam that is intolerant, supremacist and resistant to diversity. If the Pope is genuine about dialogue, then he should be mutually calling for Islamic States and Islamic schools (beginning with Al Azhar University in Cairo) to establish and preach equal status to all disbelievers, for women, gays etc.,  and promote dialogues with unbelievers like Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists etc.

In his promotion of Islam, the Pope has become the Grand Sheikh Francis of Al Vatican, and is dismissing the sufferings of persecuted Christians, victims of jihad terror and assaults. The Pope’s call for reform within “the way theology is taught in Catholic schools” is a continuation of his dogged efforts which are subjugating Christianity under Islam. His call for reform came “during a speech at the Jesuit-run theology university in Naples. It follows his outreach this year to the Muslim world with the signing of a joint statement with the imam of Cairo’s Al Azhar, the seat of Sunni learning, establishing the relationship between Catholics and Muslims as brothers, with a common mission to promote peace”,  ie. so-called ‘peace’.  Ahead of the Pope’s trip to Morocco in March, the Vatican media went so far as to abandon the traditional papal insignia. Vatican News explained that a new specially created symbol — a cross and a crescent — “are symbols of Christianity and Islam which highlight the interreligious relation between Christians and Muslims.” Also in preparation of this trip Pope Francis met in the Vatican with Dr. Muhammad bin Abdul Karim Al-Issa, the secretary general of the Muslim World League (MWL), a group that has been linked to the financing of jihad terror.

As stated by Robert Spencer :

During the meeting, al-Issa thanked the Pope for his “fair positions” on what he called the “false claims that link extremism and violence to Islam.” In other words, he thanked the Pope for dissembling about the motivating ideology of jihad terror, which his group has been accused of financing, and for defaming other religions in an effort to whitewash Islam.

The Grand Imam of Cairo’s al-Azhar, Ahmed al-Tayeb, has extended his gratitude and thanked the Pope for his “defense of Islam against the accusation of violence and terrorism.” Christianity is still waiting for the Pope to defend it against widespread Islamic persecution.

In direct contradiction to Pope Francis, Cardinal Robert Sarah — prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments–has called it “his duty” to warn fellow Christians and Europe that Islam is not benign but expansionary and threatens free societies. He stated: “As during the fall of Rome, elites are only concerned to increase the luxury of their daily life and the peoples are being anesthetized by ever more vulgar entertainment… The barbarians are already inside the city.” He was referencing to Muslim migrants who have now immigrated but not integrated into Western societies.

Meanwhile, Pope Francis has heavily promoted Muslim migration, calling it unchristian to be against open-door immigration. But in Cardinal Sarah’s warning: “it is a false exegesis [interpretation of scriptural text] to use the Word of God to promote migration. God never wanted these rifts.”

The Pope of Islam holds the highest office in the Catholic Church, but yet is serving as a deceived servant, a blind guide; and despite his pontificating about welcoming “the stranger” while condemning border walls, he has not yet torn down his own walls of protection at the Vatican to fully embrace and welcome in those same migrants and adherents of the ideology that he is advancing within the Church. READ MORE

Rick Warren Calls Apostate Roman Catholic Pope Francis “Our Pope”

Rick Warren is seen slyly referring to Pope Francis as “our pope”, and then going on to brag about what a great job he is doing. He wants you to blithely assume that of course Pope Francis is the “spiritual head” over all of Christianity and not simply over the Roman Catholic corporation. He slips it in like that’s what everyone already thinks and believes. This is nothing more than mental conditioning. A bible believing Christian under no circumstances ever would acknowledge that any pope in the Roman system had any sort of rule over them of any kind. This is how Chrislam got started in the first place. Remember we told you about Rick Warren and ‘A Common Word‘ which was the start of Chrislam? This is why Warren pushes and promotes the Catholic pope, they both have the same goal of creating the One World Religion of Chrislam

Pope Francis: God wants fraternity between Muslims and Catholics

via CHRISLAM UPDATE: Pope Francis Calls For Major Theological Reforms In Catholic Schools In Order To Promote ‘Common Mission’ With Islam And Muslims — Now The End Begins

Jim Jordan Discusses Embarrassing Spectacle of Hope Hicks Testimony… — The Last Refuge

Jim Jordan appears on Fox News to explain how House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler is attempting to weave a tenuous impeachment plan through the politicization of ongoing congressional hearings.  The latest evidence is within in the testimony of former White House Communications Director Hope Hicks. [Full pdf below]

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The transcript of Hope Hicks testimony is below:

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via Jim Jordan Discusses Embarrassing Spectacle of Hope Hicks Testimony… — The Last Refuge

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

REUTERS

President Donald Trump said on Friday he had aborted a military strike on
Iran because such a response to Tehran’s downing of an unmanned U.S.
surveillance drone would have caused a disproportionate loss of life.

Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said on Friday that Mexico would
meet with 19 countries in the coming weeks in an attempt to boost support
for a plan to stem illegal migration toward the United States.

Russia is ready to help Iran with oil exports and its banking sector if the
Instex European payment system is not launched, Interfax news agency cited
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov as saying on Friday.

Some global airlines are re-routing flights to avoid Iran-controlled
airspace over the Strait of Hormuz and Gulf of Oman, they said on Friday,
after the U.S. aviation regulator barred its carriers from the area until
further notice.

A bloc of centrist U.S. House Democrats on Friday threw their support
behind a number of proposed bills aimed at securing future U.S. elections
and punishing Moscow for its alleged political interference in 2016,
weakening the Russian ruble.

The American Psychoanalytic Association apologized on Friday for previously
treating homosexuality as a mental illness, saying its past errors
contributed to discrimination and trauma for LGBTQ people.

U.S. home sales rose in May, boosted by lower interest rates for mortgages,
giving a positive signal for the health of the U.S. economy.

A Navy SEAL medic testified on Thursday that he was responsible for the
death of an Islamic State fighter – not the Navy SEAL defendant undergoing
a court martial for war crimes – describing it as a mercy killing.

Three European central bankers are claiming oversight over Facebook’s
planned virtual currency to ensure it will not jeopardize the financial
system or be used to launder money.

AP Top Stories

Last week, Maine became the eighth state in the country to legalize
assisted suicide. The new law allows doctors to prescribe a fatal dose of
medication to terminally ill patients who are expected to die within six
months. The law stipulates that the patient must be of sound mind and must
take the medication themselves.

A high school student charged in a classmate’s death during a Colorado
school shooting told police that he planned the attack for weeks and
intended to target classmates who repeatedly mocked his gender identity.

The Philippines’ Globe Telecom said Friday it will launch Southeast Asia’s
first 5G broadband service next month using Huawei technology, despite US
blacklisting of the Chinese giant over cybersecurity concerns.

The Republican National Committee raised $14.6 million during the month of
May, new disclosures show, a reflection of how Republicans are raising
large sums of money months in advance of the 2020 general election. Earlier
this week, the committee announced that President Donald Trump raised $24.8
million in less than 24 hours after officially launching his reelection
campaign – a huge amount of money that dwarfed the first-day totals of the
Democrats competing in the primary. Former Vice President Joe Biden, who
raised the next-highest total after his first day of fundraising, pulled in
$6.3 million.

India has sent warships and stepped up aerial surveillance in strategic
Gulf waters, the Press Trust of India reported on Thursday, with global
tensions rising in the region.

A Chinese court says former Interpol President Meng Hongwei has confessed
to accepting more than $2 million in bribes and expressed regret for his
crime.

Democrats gathered on Capitol Hill and unleashed a cancer upon America. If
allowed to grow, slavery reparations will devour this country by
embittering whites and others who never owned slaves. This malignancy will
enfeeble blacks by convincing them that Abraham Lincoln never lived, the
Confederacy never died, and they are doomed in a land that hates their
guts.

European Union leaders will decide on Thursday to prolong until the end of
January 2020 economic sanctions against Russia over the turmoil in Ukraine
and call on Moscow to help bring to justice those guilty of shooting down a
passenger plane there in 2014.

A 10-year-old Colorado girl scaled Yosemite National Park’s El Capitan and
may have become the youngest person to climb one of the most celebrated and
challenging peaks in the world.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday upheld the federal government’s
authority under a 2006 law to require thousands of sex offenders to
register with authorities in the states where they live, as the justices
ruled against a child rapist convicted in Maryland.

BBC

Kim Jong-un has hailed North Korea’s “invincible” ties with China, during a
state visit by President Xi Jinping.

In Sudan, the ruling Military Council has switched off the internet in
response to protests which took place on 3 June 2019.

Honduras has deployed the military across the country after violent
anti-government protests left two dead.

WND

Younger generations seem to be developing horns in the back of their skulls
due to the extended use of technology like smartphones and tablets.

After winning a court battle aided by the ACLU, a member of the Satanic
Temple prayed “Hail Satan” to open a meeting of the Kenai Peninsula Borough
in southern Alaska, prompting walkouts by about a dozen officials and
attendees.

The United States’ suicide rate in 2017 was 33 percent higher than in 1999
and is at its highest since World War II, according to a new study.


Mid-Day Snapshot · June 21, 2019

The Foundation

“Harmony, liberal intercourse with all Nations, are recommended by policy, humanity and interest. But even our Commercial policy should hold an equal and impartial hand: neither seeking nor granting exclusive favours or preferences; consulting the natural course of things; diffusing and diversifying by gentle means the streams of Commerce, but forcing nothing; establishing with Powers so disposed; in order to give trade a stable course.” —George Washington (1796)

Trump’s Art of the Trade Deals With Mexico and China

Mexico passes the USMCA, Canada advocates for it, and another meeting with China is set.


SCOTUS Rules Against Left’s War on Peace Cross

It was a big win for religious liberty, though the separate opinions leave too much wiggle room.


VidAngel Owes Hollywood Demons Big Time

The company has been ordered to pay $62 million for “pirating” movies.


Warren, Sanders Fighting for the Left Flank

She’s trying to push policies that are just as radical but with a moderate veneer.


Gaffe Machine Biden Contends With Racism Fallout

The Democrat frontrunner’s tone-deaf call for civility sparks demands for apologies.


To Tell the Truth

Truth: The quality or state of being true; that which is true or in accordance with fact or reality.


Video: Media Defends AOC’s Concentration Camp Insanity

Ben Shapiro responds to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s reprehensible statements.


Video: Trump Launches 2020 Run

As he leaks about an upcoming series of ICE deportation raids. The question is why.


Today’s Opinion

Marc A. Thiessen
Biden’s Problem With Democrats Is That He Doesn’t Hate Republicans
David Harsanyi
The Problem With Ocasio-Cortez’s Shameful Ignorance of History
Tony Perkins
World War Won: Cross Memorial Stays, Court Rules
Erick Erickson
The Moral Cowards of Twitter
Mona Charen
Elizabeth Warren’s Terrible Plans

For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.


Friday Top News Executive Summary

About-face on Iran, Saudi arms deal, Eddie Gallagher trial, California voter-roll cleanup, and more.


Friday Short Cuts

Notable quotables from Kevin Williamson, AOC, George Takei, Bette Midler, and more.



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 – 6/21/2019

Medic stuns courtroom saying he killed prisoner, not Navy SEAL on trial
A Navy SEAL medic testified on Thursday that he was responsible for the death of an Islamic State fighter – not the Navy SEAL defendant undergoing a court martial for war crimes – describing it as a mercy killing. Special Operator 1st Class Corey Scott, a SEAL team medic, said under cross-examination by the defense in a courtroom at the San Diego Naval Base that he killed the fighter by asphyxiation, after he saw Gallagher stab the victim with a knife. Scott’s testimony under immunity from prosecution appeared to take the prosecutors by surprise and stunned the courtroom, witnesses said.

Earthquake shakes much of western France, no damage reported
A moderate earthquake has hit western France, felt as far as Bordeaux in the south and Normandy in the north. No damage has been reported so far, according to Col. Michael Bernier, spokesman for the national civil security service. He said it prompted concern in several regions because “so many people felt it.” The national seismic service says the epicenter of the 5.1 magnitude quake Friday morning was near the town of Bressuire.ke shakes much of western France, no damage reported

Ebola’s spread shows how science needs societies to succeed
The persistence of Congo’s Ebola outbreak and its deadly spread to Uganda in recent days show how societal issues are as crucial as scientific advances in controlling disease outbreaks, specialists in global public health say….the current Ebola outbreak has continued to spread relentlessly since it began in August 2018 in Democratic Republic Congo’s North Kivu province. It has infected more than 2,000 people, killing at least 1,400 of them. And, in recent days, it reached Uganda,

FEC faces lawsuit seeking investigation of Hillary
“The original FEC complaint alleged that Hillary for America and the DNC breached campaign finance law by issuing a false report with the intention of misleading the American people. The complaint notes that campaign expenditure forms show that the DNC and Hillary for American paid their mutual legal advisers at Perkins Coie, LLP for ‘legal services,’ but the law firm turned around and paid Fusion GPS for the Steele dossier.”

Iran Releases Video Of Drone-Downing, Trump Warns “You’ll Soon Find Out” If US Will Attack
President Trump replied “you’ll soon find out” when asked whether the US would attack Iran. In remarks to the press, Trump reiterated that Iran made a “very bad” mistake, and insisted that the drone was in international waters.

NY clerk refusing to issue illegal aliens driver’s licenses after NY passes law saying he must
A New York clerk is refusing to abide by a newly signed law granting drivers licenses to illegal aliens, and vows to file legal action. On Tuesday, Erie County Clerk Michael Kearns submitted a letter to attorney Michael Siragusa, citing his refusal to abide by the law, and requesting representation for a lawsuit against the state in an effort to block the law before it takes effect in December 2019, WIVB News reported Wednesday. “After a review of the act, I am convinced that it is inconsistent with federal law.

Iranian commander says Iran ballistic missiles can strike US aircraft carriers
A top Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) commander said this week that Iran has powerful ballistic missiles that are capable of attacking U.S. aircraft carriers in the region, according to Iranian state TV. “These missiles can hit with great precision carriers in the sea … These missiles are domestically produced and are difficult to intercept and hit with other missiles,” he said,

‘Climate Emergency’: Ireland Set to Ban Private Cars While Planning Mass Third World Migration
Drivers will be forced off the roads in Ireland and the population packed into “higher density” cities under a long-awaited climate plan which will ‘revolutionise’ people’s lifestyle and behaviours, according to local media…huge tax hikes, as well as bans and red tape outlined in the plan, will pave the way to a “vibrant” Ireland of zero carbon emissions by 2050 according to the government, which last year committed to boost the country’s 4.7 million-strong population by a further million with mass migration.

EU leaders scramble for consensus on 2050 carbon neutral target
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has called on the bloc to aim for a 55% cut. But doubts remains even among nations in favor of the 2050 goal over how to pay for the economic shift to low-carbon technology in big employment sectors such as transport, farming and building and remain competitive.

Trump approves military strikes against Iran, pulls out last-minute
US President Donald Trump approved military strikes against Iran on Friday in retaliation for the downing of a US surveillance drone, but called off the attacks at the last minute, the New York Times reported. After weeks of rising tension amid a spate of attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf, Iran said on Thursday it had shot down an unmanned US military surveillance drone, fanning fears of an overt military confrontation between the longtime adversaries.

New Zealand immigration minister apologizes for official map excluding Israel
New Zealand’s Minister for Immigration has written to the Israeli ambassador in Wellington apologizing personally for a map on a government website that showed a “Palestine,” but not Israel. “I can assure you that the fact sheet did not reflect New Zealand Government policy,” Minister Iain Lees-Galloway said in the letter to Amb. Itzhak Gerberg. “The map was clearly inaccurate and did not label the State of Israel as it should.”

Hong Kong protests: Thousands surround police headquarters
Thousands of people in Hong Kong have surrounded police headquarters, calling for an extradition bill to be scrapped. Police have asked the protesters to withdraw peacefully, saying their presence would “seriously affect” emergency services. Millions of people have marched against the bill in recent weeks, with violent clashes breaking out with police.

Georgia protests: Thousands storm parliament over Russian MP’s speech
Some 240 people were hurt in clashes as protesters tried to storm Georgia’s parliament after a Russian MP took the speaker’s seat in parliament. Riot police stopped them from entering the building, reportedly using tear gas and rubber bullets. Anger erupted when Sergei Gavrilov addressed an assembly of MPs from Orthodox Christian countries.

Honduras protests: Military deployed after violence
Honduras has deployed the military across the country after violent anti-government protests left two dead. Shops were looted and government buildings attacked in the capital, Tegucigalpa. Some roads were blocked with barricades and burning tyres. Protests against President Juan Orlando Hernández have been building in recent weeks, sparked by proposed health and education reforms.

US Supreme Court rules WW1 cross can remain on state land
The US Supreme Court has ruled that a concrete cross honouring World War One soldiers can remain on state land, reversing a lower court decision. The American Humanist Association had sued to remove the Bladensburg, Maryland, monument, saying it was an unlawful endorsement of Christianity. But the top court said the 94-year-old cross was a “historical landmark” and destroying it would be disrespectful.

US Senate votes to block Trump’s $8bn Saudi arms sale
The US Senate has voted to block the sale of billions of dollars’ worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia, striking a blow to President Donald Trump. Mr Trump bypassed Congress last month in an attempt to push through the $8bn (£6bn) deal, citing threats to Saudi Arabia from its bitter rival Iran. But on Thursday – in a rare bipartisan act – the Republican-led Senate passed three resolutions to prevent the sale.

Government meeting opens with ‘Hail Satan’ prayer
A Satanic Temple member who won the right to open a regional Alaska government meeting declared “Hail Satan” during her first invocation, prompting about a dozen officials and attendees to walk out. Tuesday’s invocation that started the meeting of the Kenai Peninsula Borough also spurred a protest outside the southern Alaska borough’s administration building that drew 40 people, The Peninsula Clarion newspaper reported.

US hints it could use nuclear weapons once again to create ‘decisive results’ in wars in chilling new Pentagon report
NUCLEAR weapons could still create “decisive results” and break stalemates during a war, Pentagon top brass have claimed. The ominous new document – since deleted – is called ‘Nuclear Operations’ and suggests military chiefs could once again use the weapons of mass destruction to “restore strategic stability.” Arms control experts say the doctrine marks a dangerous shift towards the idea of actually fighting and winning a full-scale nuclear conflict.

Israel says it thwarted Iran spying attempt in West Bank
The Shin Bet domestic security service said Thursday that it has arrested a Jordanian businessman who attempted to set up an intelligence-gathering operation in the West Bank on behalf of Iran. The businessman, who was named as 32-year-old Taer Shaafut, was arrested in April and was indicted 10 days ago by the military prosecutor for allegedly making contact with the enemy…

‘Massive’ fire burns out of control at Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery
A fire was burning out of control at an oil refinery in Pennsylvania on Friday morning, a Philadelphia fire department official said, as local media reported a series of explosions on site. NBC Philadelphia said the “massive” blaze at the 335,000 barrels per day Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery was visible from miles away and triggered explosions that were felt as far away as South Jersey.

Court Rules President Trump Can Defund Planned Parenthood, Will Cut Almost $60 Million in Taxpayer Funding
A federal appeals court today ruled President Donald Trump can partially defund planned Parenthood while the abortion business’ lawsuit against his administration’s new rules moves forward.

After years of war and drought, Iraq’s bumper crop is burning
Riyadh and his neighbors in Sheikh Tami village put out the blaze and saved most of his crop but hundreds of other farmers in Iraq have been less fortunate since Islamic State urged its supporters to wage economic warfare with fire.

NZ launches gun ‘buy-back’ scheme for weapons banned after Christchurch mosque attacks
New Zealand’s government on Thursday launched a multimillion-dollar, six-month “buy-back” scheme to compensate owners of powerful but newly banned semi-automatic weapons prohibited in the wake of deadly attacks on two mosques in the Southern city of Christchurch.

Bank of America CEO says company wants a ‘cashless society’
Bank of America Opens a New Window.CEO Brian Moynihan spoke this week about embracing digital payment transactions while moving toward a cashless society.

Punishment sought for Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar
….Reps. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., and Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., are being put in the bull’s-eye of a petition that already has collected more than 130,000 signatures asking for them to be removed of various congressional committees and censured.

Torrential Rain Of Biblical Proportions Is Causing Immense Devastation For Midwest Farmers
The wettest 12 months in all of U.S. history was followed by the second wettest May on record, and for some parts of the Midwest the month of June will be even worse.  Some portions of Ohio and Indiana have gotten 10 more inches of rain since Friday, and more rain is literally falling on the Midwest as I write this article.  When I describe what we have witnessed as “torrential rain of Biblical proportions”, I am not exaggerating even a little bit.

Over $1 Billion Worth Of Cocaine Seized At Philadelphia Port, U.S. Attorney’s Office Says
One of the largest cocaine busts in United States history happened Tuesday in Philadelphia. Federal authorities continue to comb a cargo ship at Packer Avenue Marine Terminal in South Philadelphia. So far, they’ve seized 16.5 tons of cocaine — 33,000 pounds — which has a street value of more than $1 billion, the U.S. Attorney’s Office says.

DIRECT HIT: Iran Shoots Down US ‘Spy’ Drone And IRGC Says It’s ‘Ready For War’ As Tensions In Persian Gulf Finally Seem Ready To Erupt
For many weeks now, the United States has been shipping tons of ships, planes and troops to the Middle East with the Pentagon warning that Iran was getting ready to do something. Well, today Iran did just that. They are claiming to have successfully shot down a United States ‘spy’ drone saying that their ‘airspace is a red line’ and will not be violated. All this brings us to a very interesting position.


Headlines – 6/21/2019

Ex-CIA chief: US-Israel relationship seems to have gone ‘overboard’

In first test of army chief’s new strategy, IDF simulates war with Hezbollah

Trump advisor Bolton to hold ‘regional security’ talks in Israel

US: Iran shot down drone in international airspace in ‘unprovoked attack’

After downing drone, Iran at UN accuses Washington of ‘provocative act’

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard chief: Downing US drone sends ‘clear message’

Pentagon releases flight path image, grid plot for drone shot down by Iran

Iran Tries to Counter U.S. Military Claims by Releasing Drawing of What It Says Happened to Drone

Iran: We Have Parts of Downed U.S. Drone; Trump: Incident ‘Probably a Mistake’

Israel said worried US may not respond decisively to drone downing

Trump suggests a ‘loose and stupid’ Iranian officer shot down US drone

Pentagon: US ready to defend its interests in Middle East

Netanyahu: Iran intensifying its aggression

Prime Minister offers support to US, calls on international community to confront Iran over its aggressive moves

US Must Prevent Establishment of Iranian ‘Land Bridge’ to Mediterranean, New Think Tank Paper Urges

Sen. Graham on Iran: If they’re itching for a fight, they’re going to get one

Situation Room briefing on Iran crisis concludes, as McConnell says ‘measured’ response is coming

‘Does the president have the power to declare war?’: Democrats question Trump official

US House Speaker Pelosi calls on US to de-escalate tensions with Iran

Biden calls Iran tensions ‘self-inflicted disaster’ after US drone shoot-down

Biden warns Trump strategy makes Iran conflict ‘more likely’

Ex-Obama adviser Rhodes: Iran debacle ‘predictable,’ ‘everything’s gotten worse’ under Trump

Gen. Keane: Likelihood of large-scale military operation in Iran is ‘pretty remote’

India warships sent to strategic Gulf waters: Navy

UN chief urges restraint after US drone downed

EU to Chair High-level Meeting to ‘Ensure Continued Implementation’ of Iran Nuclear Deal

Iran says it will not give Europe more time to save nuclear deal

Moscow says it will look out for Iranian interests at upcoming Jerusalem meet

Erdogan hopes to use ties with Trump to defuse S-400 tensions

Yes, the Iranians Are Crazy (So Was Hitler)

Houthi drone heading toward Jazan intercepted, downed: Arab Coalition

After years of war and drought, Iraq’s bumper crop is burning

Senior officials met at White House after reports of missile strike in Saudi Arabia

Defying Trump, GOP-led Senate votes to block Saudi arms sales

Activists were killed and women were raped. But some defiant Sudanese say their revolution isn’t over yet

NZ launches gun ‘buy-back’ scheme for weapons banned after Christchurch mosque attacks

Boris Johnson, Jeremy Hunt in runoff for UK prime minister

Bank of America CEO says company wants a ‘cashless society’

Senators briefed on UFO’s as speculation grows surrounding naval sightings: report

UN, European bodies outline joint push against space junk

5.6 magnitude earthquake hits near Neiafu, Tonga

5.5 magnitude earthquake hits near San Martin, Argentina

5.3 magnitude earthquake hits near Bristol Island, South Sandwich Islands

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Ndoi Island, Fiji

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near L’Esperance Rock, New Zealand

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Pondaguitan, Philippines

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Dili, East Timor

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near L’Esperance Rock, New Zealand

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 25,000ft

Reventador volcano in Ecuador erupts to 15,000ft

Ebeko volcano in the Kuril Islands erupts to 12,000ft

St. Louis Planned Parenthood defiant as central Missouri still reels over abortion access

Integration or revolution? LGBTQ activists split over what Pride is all about

Man threatens to ‘kill every gay person I can’ at St. Louis PrideFest, police say

An Archbishop told a Jesuit school to fire a gay teacher. They said no


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

Weekly Watchman for 06/21/2019

The Condition of the American Church – Part 2

Wednesday, we aired the first hour of a conversation with former muslim, now born-again evangelist/missionary Elijah Abraham and Apologist Jay Segert of The Starting Point Project when they were in town for our Watchman Conference. Today, this tough conversation continues.  Mike and our guests discuss the challenges and the possible future of “organized church” in America.

Daily podcast, relevant articles on issues pertaining to Christians and more can be found on Stand Up For The Truth.

Read more


Where Is The Church in America Headed – Part 1 Rebroadcast

Mike and David taking some time off today.  Today we re-broadcast Part 1 of a recent in-studio discussion with Elijah Abraham and Jay Seegert.

Daily podcast, relevant articles on issues pertaining to Christians and more can be found on Stand Up For The Truth.

Read more


Dave Wager: Living vs Loving In Our World

Mike and David are off today. Crash Connell visits with Dave Wager about what the Bible teaches believers how we should live and love in the world around us.  What is our motivation? Dave often refers to a book he’s reading, THE HOLY WAR by John Bunyan, 1st & 2nd John and passages in the book of Job.

Daily podcast, relevant articles on issues pertaining to Christians and more can be found on Stand Up For The Truth.

Read more


Dr. Duke Pesta on the Politically-Correct, Intolerant Education Culture

Some of the topics we discuss with Dr. Duke Pesta include a taxpayer-funded, “free” breakfast & lunch program in public schools, a liberal college bullying a local bakery, a Christian pastor under fire – from students – for mentioning his faith in a commencement address, Teen Vogue instructing 16-year olds on how to obtain an abortion without their parent’s permission, a new social media platform ant Twitter alternative (Parler.com) that will not censor Christian and conservative voices, AND, the probability that U.S. taxpayers will soon be on the hook for billions of dollars of unpaid student loans.

Daily podcast, relevant articles on issues pertaining to Christians and more can be found on Stand Up For The Truth.

Read more

RenewAmerica Newsletter for June 21, 2019


June 20, 2019
Democrats are now morally obligated to build the wall
WILL CHAMBERLAIN — Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) recently referred to detention centers at the U.S. border as “concentration camps,” suggesting those “concerned enough with humanity” take the words “never again” seriously and must “do something about it.”… (more)

June 20, 2019
WASHINGTON TIMES — The Communist Party of the USA will celebrate its 100th birthday this weekend in Chicago, at a conference replete with questions about what the future holds for the organization when national Democrats already embrace some of its most coveted goals…. (more)


June 20, 2019
NEWSMAX — President Donald Trump raised $24.8 million in the less-than 24 hours after kicking off his re-election campaign. The staggering sum was announced in a tweet on Wednesday morning by Republican Party Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel. It dwarfs what the top Democratic contenders in the 2020 White House primary raised over the course of the first three months of this year…. (more)

June 20, 2019
Jack Cashill notes what happened when ‘the mob’ no longer had presidential support
JACK CASHILL — A December 2018 headline in the New York Times heralded the rare bit of good news the Times allows its readers in the Age of Trump. It read simply, “U.S. Murder Rate for 2018 Is on Track for a Big Drop.”… (more)

June 20, 2019
YOUTUBE — Jordan Peterson talked with Dennis Prager at the Prager Summit in May in Santa Barbara…. (more)

June 20, 2019
Michelle Malkin on ‘grievance-mongering elites’ who’ve ‘bullied and defamed’ whites
MICHELLE MALKIN — As a right-wing alumna of far-left Oberlin College, I have four words for the administration in response to last week’s ground-breaking $11 million jury verdict in the defaming of humble Gibson’s Bakery: You had it coming…. (more)

June 19, 2019
NEWSMAX — The “Jeopardy!” player who won nearly two and a half million dollars donated a chunk of his payout to a charity for pancreatic cancer – – the type of cancer the show’s host Alex Trebek is battling…. (more)


June 19, 2019
YOUTUBE — Vice President Mike Pence introduces President Trump in Orlando, Florida where the Trump 2020 re-election campaign will officially begin with one of the president’s signature ‘MAGA’ rallies. Trump rolls out his re-election bid just as tensions heat up in Congress over growing calls for his impeachment… (more)

June 19, 2019
AMERICANS FOR TAX REFORM — Joe Biden said Monday that the first thing he’d do as president is “eliminate” the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act: “First thing I would do as president is eliminate the president’s tax cut,” Biden said during the Poor People’s Forum in Washington, D.C. on Monday…. (more)

June 18, 2019
But left fights back against Supreme Court justice who wants to get it right
BOB UNRUH — It’s been done hundreds of times, but the urging by one member of the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn “demonstrably erroneous” precedents has enraged the left. Justice Clarence Thomas wrote this week in a concurring opinion in the Gamble v. United States decision that the court’s understanding of stare decisis – – the principle that previous decisions guide future rulings – -needs a new look…. (more)


June 17, 2019
The RussiaGate hoax was a failed con job
HUMAN EVENTS — George C. Parker was a con man who specialized in selling unwary immigrants the Brooklyn Bridge. His ruse was discovered when the police had to arrest a few poor souls who set up toll booths on the access ramp. The resulting expression, “I have a bridge to sell you,” is a gibe at the victims of dumb frauds…. (more)

June 17, 2019
DAILY CALLER — Secretary of State Mike Pompeo defended recent comments President Donald Trump made suggesting his campaign would listen to opposition research from foreign sources. “I’ve nothing further to add. I came on to talk about foreign policy. I think is the third time you asked me about a Washington piece of silliness and chase down a story that is inconsistent of what I’ve seen the president do every single day,” Pompeo said Sunday morning during an interview with “Fox New Sunday” host Chris Wallace…. (more)

June 17, 2019
THE HILL — If you read the newspapers, tuned into the cable TV pundits or received an email from one of the Democrats running for president, you’d swear Donald Trump was back to his treasonous ways…. (more)


June 17, 2019
Says there’s ‘little evidence’ Trump can make ‘reality-based decisions’
WORLDNETDAILY — Psychiatrist Bandy Lee, a Yale faculty member who repeatedly and unashamedly has announced a psychiatric diagnosis for President Donald Trump even though she’s never met him, and who previously has condemned him as unstable, dangerous and in need of being locked up, is at it again…. (more)

June 17, 2019
NATIONAL REVIEW — What do you get when you take Dean Cain, an actor famous for playing Superman on TV, and Kristy Swanson, the actress who was the original Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and give them the chance to play a couple of adulterous, wildly partisan FBI agents working at the highest levels of the Mueller Russiagate probe?… (more)

June 17, 2019
DAILY CALLER — USA Powerlifting is facing a discrimination complaint in Minnesota over its transgender athlete policy after it said JayCee Cooper, a biological man, couldn’t compete in women’s events. The federation’s president told The Daily Caller it’s prepared to go to court to keep the policy in place, and framed the policy as protecting the federal rights of women…. (more)

June 17, 2019

June 16, 2019
DAILIY SIGNAL — Shouldn’t Environmental Protection Agency regulations do more good than harm? The agency hasn’t always thought so. In 2012, under President Barack Obama, the EPA finalized a rule to reduce emissions of mercury and other hazardous air pollutants from coal- and oil-fired power plants…. (more)

June 16, 2019
WASHINGTON TIMES — Pentagon officials are drafting a slew of “contingency plans” for the U.S. and its Middle East allies, should growing tensions between Washington and Iran escalate in the region, says acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan…. (more)


June 16, 2019
DAILIY SIGNAL — Hispanics and pro-life advocacy go together naturally, in no small part because of Hispanics’ Christian faith. Studies have shown that most Hispanics are religiously observant, with about 83% of them affirming a religious affiliation. More important than statistics, however, and more indicative of their views on the issue of abortion, is the emotion with which they explain their culture and views on life…. (more)

June 16, 2019
Halts city efforts to discriminate against popular restaurants based on religion
WORLDNETDAILY — The governor of Texas has signed into law a bill that is aimed at preventing cities from discriminating against the popular Chick-fil-A restaurant chain because of claims over the owner’s faith. Gov. Greg Abbott this week signed the legislation that sponsors explain upholds religious freedom…. (more)

June 16, 2019
Bill Federer recounts influence of historical circumstances that went far beyond England
BILL FEDERER — England was invaded by “Dane” Vikings from Scandinavia who destroyed churches, libraries and defeated all opposition except for 23-year-old King Alfred. Forced into the swampy, tidal marshes of Somerset, Alfred, King of the Anglos and Saxons, began a resistance movement in 878 A.D…. (more)

June 14, 2019
Franklin Graham: ‘Everyone celebrated – well, almost everyone’
WORLDNETDAILY — While Franklin Graham, chief of the worldwide Samaritan’s Purse Christian ministry, offered congratulations to members of an Alabama football team who chose to be baptized together, someone in the small community of Chatom was unhappy…. (more)

June 13, 2019
DON FOTHERINGHAM — During the 2019 session of the Utah State Legislature, a powerful lobby known as the “Convention of States Action” (COS) succeeded in getting the Republican leadership to maneuver SJR-9 through the Utah Legislature. SJR-9 is COS’s application for Congress to call a convention under Article V of the U.S. Constitution…. (more)

 

June 21 The Disaster of Wrong Desire

Scripture reading: Psalm 106:1–15

Key verse: Numbers 11:1

When the people complained, it displeased the Lord; for the Lord heard it, and His anger was aroused. So the fire of the Lord burned among them, and consumed some in the outskirts of the camp.

A wise Christian once remarked: “You may get what you want, but you may not want what you get.”

That certainly was the case when the Israelites demanded meat to spice up their diet of manna. Even as they were savoring the first bite, God struck them with a deadly plague.

Wrong desires are still a clear and present danger for us today. We can manipulate circumstances or people to attain our wants. Though we may be momentarily satisfied, we will eventually reap the distasteful consequences.

How can you avoid the pitfalls of asking the heavenly Father for things that will be to our detriment?

First, delight yourself in the Lord on a regular basis (Ps. 37:4). When you make loving God your chief desire, you will find your requests aligned with His will the majority of the time.

Second, find your contentment in Christ. You may be prone to think if you had this object or knew this person or could accomplish this goal, life would be far better. God may grant your desire, but He wants you to find your contentment in your relationship with Christ.

Third, rest in the goodness and faithfulness of God. God will give you only what is for your welfare, and He will do so with perfect faithfulness.

Father, I will delight myself in You today. I will find contentment in Christ and rest in Your goodness and faithfulness.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (2000). Into His presence (p. 180). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

June 21, 2019 Afternoon Verse Of The Day

The Introduction of Antichrists

Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have appeared; from this we know that it is the last hour. (2:18)

Again John addressed his readers as children (paidia; cf. 2:13), identifying them as those who belonged to the family of God, and those whom their Father desired to warn that there was impending danger. It is essential that Christians, especially those who are less spiritually mature and hence most vulnerable, understand the serious threat that antichrists pose.

Further underscoring the urgency of the subject, John reminded his readers that it is the last hour. The phrase literally reads, “last hour it is,” the word order making it an emphatic expression. The last hour refers to the present evil age, one of only two ages—along with the age to come—that the New Testament outlines (cf. Matt. 12:32; Mark 10:30; Eph. 1:21; Heb. 6:5). The last hour began at the first coming of Jesus Christ (cf. 1 Cor. 10:11; Gal. 4:4; Heb. 1:1–2; 9:26; 1 Peter 1:20), and will end when He returns. (The age to come encompasses all of the future, including the millennial kingdom, the thousand-year earthly reign of Christ when righteousness will prevail in the world [Isa. 9:6–7; 11:2, 6–9; 30:23–26; 35:2–6; 45:22–24; 65:18–23; 66:13; Ezek. 34:25; 47:12; Joel 2:28–32; Amos 9:13; Zech. 14:16–21; 1 Cor. 15:24–28; Rev. 20:4; cf. 2 Sam. 7:16; Matt. 19:28; Rev. 3:21; 5:10].)

Christ’s arrival aroused Satan’s opposition to an intensity not seen before or since, resulting in the rise of many antichrists. After three years of relentless hostility toward Him (cf. Acts 4:26–28), His enemies finally had Him nailed to the cross. That same malignant antichrist spirit has continued to flourish to this day (1 John 4:3).

This verse is the first New Testament use of the term antichrist, yet it is certainly not the first biblical introduction to the concept. As John himself pointed out, his readers had already heard that antichrist is coming. Since they knew about the coming of the Christ from the Old Testament prophecies, some may have known about antichrist from the same sources. The prophet Daniel foresaw a human leader, satanically energized, who will come to Jerusalem, enforce his will, exalt himself above all other people and gods, and wreak havoc and slaughter (Dan. 7–8; 9:26–27; 11). The final Antichrist will be an imposing, intimidating figure of superior intellect and oratorical skills, possessing advanced military and economic expertise, who becomes the leader of the world. He will be so convincing as an ally and deliverer that Israel will sign a pact with him to be her protector. Then he will turn against the nation and will occupy the throne in the sanctuary of the rebuilt temple, which for Israel will still symbolize the presence of God, and blasphemously present himself to the world as if he were God. (For additional details of Antichrist’s actions, see Revelation 13, 17 and my commentary on those passages in Revelation 12–22, The MacArthur New Testament Commentary [Chicago: Moody, 2000], 35–65, 155–72; see also Rev. 6:2; 16:13; 19:20.)

The prophet Zechariah also foresaw the future Antichrist:

“For behold, I [God] am going to raise up a shepherd in the land who will not care for the perishing, seek the scattered, heal the broken, or sustain the one standing, but will devour the flesh of the fat sheep and tear off their hoofs. Woe to the worthless shepherd who leaves the flock! A sword will be on his arm and on his right eye! His arm will be totally withered and his right eye will be blind.” (Zech. 11:16–17)

At the end of the age God will permit an evil shepherd (Antichrist) to arise, who will be the antithesis of the Good Shepherd. This man will be a false shepherd who does not love sheep but slaughters them to fill his insatiable hunger. Zechariah portrays Him as a son of destruction devoted to violence and devastation. Though his arm represents his great strength and his eye his intelligence, he is doomed. God will destroy that Antichrist when His sword of vengeance falls on him.

John’s readers surely would also have known about Jesus’ Olivet Discourse, in which He made reference to the same Antichrist-related events as those already prophesied in the Old Testament:

Therefore when you see the abomination of desolation which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand), then those who are in Judea must flee to the mountains. Whoever is on the housetop must not go down to get the things out that are in his house. Whoever is in the field must not turn back to get his cloak. But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! But pray that your flight will not be in the winter, or on a Sabbath. For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will. Unless those days had been cut short, no life would have been saved; but for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short. Then if anyone says to you, “Behold, here is the Christ,” or “There He is,” do not believe him. For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect. Behold, I have told you in advance. (Matt. 24:15–25)

The recipients of John’s letter most likely also would have been familiar with Paul’s words, written four decades earlier, that clearly predicted the coming Antichrist. He instructed the Thessalonian believers as follows:

Now we request you, brethren, with regard to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, that you not be quickly shaken from your composure or be disturbed either by a spirit or a message or a letter as if from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come. Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself above every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, displaying himself as being God. Do you not remember that while I was still with you, I was telling you these things? And you know what restrains him now, so that in his time he will be revealed. For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only he who now restrains will do so until he is taken out of the way. Then that lawless one will be revealed whom the Lord will slay with the breath of His mouth and bring to an end by the appearance of His coming; that is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders, and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved. For this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they will believe what is false, in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness. (2 Thess. 2:1–12)

Paul declared that those climactic events would not occur until “the apostasy comes first.” “Apostasy” is the transliteration of apostasia (“a falling away,” “a forsaking,” “a defection”). Theologically, it is the deliberate abandonment of a formerly professed position. But in this context the word denotes more than a mere general abandonment of God and Christ. Throughout redemptive history a certain general apostasy will always be occurring in the churches, in keeping with the ever-present Laodicean spirit (Rev. 3:14–16; cf. Heb. 10:25–31; 2 Peter 2:20–22). In fact, as time passes there will be an escalating defection from the truth:

But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron, men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth. (1 Tim. 4:1–3; cf. Matt. 24:12; 2 Tim. 3:1–9; 2 Peter 2:1–3; Jude 4, 17–19)

However, Paul wrote to the Thessalonians about a unique, identifiable, historical event—the apostasy. Before the day of the Lord comes, there will be a climactic act of apostasy led by the man of lawlessness, or son of destruction. That man—the Antichrist—will openly defy God’s rule and live without regard for His law (cf. 1 John 3:4). The only thing that “restrains him [the final Antichrist] now, so that in his time he will be revealed” (2 Thess. 2:6) is the Holy Spirit, whom God, in His perfect timing, will take out of the way. Thus Satan’s man of sin and destruction cannot arrive apart from the divine timetable. (For a fuller discussion of 2 Thessalonians 2:1–12, see 1 & 2 Thessalonians, The MacArthur New Testament Commentary [Chicago: Moody, 2002], 263–85.)[1]


18. It is the last time, or hour. He confirms the faithful against offences by which they might have been disturbed. Already many sects had risen up, which rent the unity of faith and caused disorder in the churches. But the Apostle not only fortifies the faithful, lest they should falter, but turns the whole to a contrary purpose; for he reminds them that the last time had already come, and therefore he exhorts them to a greater vigilance, as though he had said, “Whilst various errors arise, it behoves you to be awakened rather than to be overwhelmed; for we ought hence to conclude that Christ is not far distant; let us then attentively look for him, lest he should come upon us suddenly.” In the same way it behoves us to comfort ourselves at this day, and to see by faith the near advent of Christ, while Satan is causing confusion for the sake of disturbing the Church, for these are the signs of the last time.

But so many ages having passed away since the death of John, seem to prove that this prophecy is not true: to this I answer, that the Apostle, according to the common mode adopted in the Scripture, declares to the faithful, that nothing more now remained but that Christ should appear for the redemption of the world. But as he fixes no time, he did not allure the men of that age by a vain hope, nor did he intend to cut short in future the course of the Church and the many successions of years during which the Church has hitherto remained in the world. And doubtless, if the eternity of God’s kingdom be borne in mind, so long a time will appear to us as a moment. We must understand the design of the Apostle, that he calls that the last time, during which all things shall be so completed, that nothing will remain except the last revelation of Christ.

As ye have heard that antichrist will come. He speaks as of a thing well known. We may hence conclude that the faithful had been taught and warned from the beginning respecting the future disorder of the Church, in order that they might carefully keep themselves in the faith they professed, and also instruct posterity in the duty of watchfulness. For it was God’s will that his Church should be thus tried, lest any one knowingly and willingly should be deceived, and that there might be no excuse for ignorance. But we see that almost the whole world has been miserably deceived, as though not a word had been said about Antichrist.

Moreover, under the Papacy there is nothing more notorious and common than the future coming of Antichrist; and yet they are so stupid, that they perceive not that his tyranny is exercised over them. Indeed, the same thing happens altogether to them as to the Jews; for though they hold the promises respecting the Messiah, they are yet further away from Christ than if they had never heard his name; for the imaginary Messiah, whom they have invented for themselves, turns them wholly aside from the Son of God; and were any one to shew Christ to them from the Law and the Prophets, he would only spend his labour in vain. The Popes have imagined an Antichrist, who for three years and a half is to harass the Church. All the marks by which the Spirit of God has pointed out Antichrist, clearly appear in the Pope; but the triennial Antichrist lays fast hold on the foolish Papists, so that seeing they do not see. Let us then remember, that Antichrist has not only been announced by the Spirit of God, but that also the marks by which he may be distinguished have been mentioned.

Even now are there many antichrists. This may seem to have been added by way of correction, as they falsely thought that it would be some one kingdom; but it is not so. They who suppose that he would be only one man, are indeed greatly mistaken. For Paul, referring to a future defection, plainly shows that it would be a certain body or kingdom. (2 Thess. 2:3.) He first predicts a defection that would prevail through the whole Church, as a universal evil; he then makes the head of the apostasy the adversary of Christ, who would sit in the temple of God, claiming for himself divinity and divine honours. Except we desire wilfully to err, we may learn from Paul’s description to know Antichrist. That passage I have already explained; it is enough now to touch on it by the way.

But how can that passage agree with the words of John, who says that there were already many antichrists? To this I reply, that John meant no other thing than to say, that some particular sects had already risen, which were forerunners of a future Antichrist; for Cerinthus, Basilides, Marcion, Valentinus, Ebion, Arrius, and others, were members of that kingdom which the Devil afterwards raised up in opposition to Christ. Properly speaking, Antichrist was not yet in existence; but the mystery of iniquity was working secretly. But John uses the name, that he might effectually stimulate the care and solicitude of the godly to repel frauds.

But if the Spirit of God even then commanded the faithful to stand on their watch, when they saw at a distance only signs of the coming enemy, much less is it now a time for sleeping, when he holds the Church under his cruel and oppressive tyranny, and openly dishonours Christ.[2]


18 John immediately stresses the urgency of the situation by bringing the doctrinal conflict to an eschatological arena. He labels his opponents Antichrists and says that their appearance coincides with “the last hour.” Both terms seem to be drawn from a community slogan, which John has split in order to create a chiasm. The two halves of the slogan are indicated by the repetition of hoti, which again introduces direct discourse: “you have heard, ‘Antichrist is coming’ ”; “we know ‘it is the last hour.’ ”

In the last hour

 

Antichrist is coming

 

[now] many Antichrists

 

[therefore]

 

have come

 

it is the last hour.

 

The original form of the slogan epitomized what must have been a more extensive eschatological doctrine: “In the last hour Antichrist is coming.” John applies it to the present situation to demonize his opponents.

While the terms “last hour” and “Antichrists” seem to be drawn from a community slogan, their precise meaning is unclear. Neither term appears outside 1 and 2 John, and despite the tendency for eschatological labels to intermingle in popular Christian thought (i.e., “last hour” = “last days” = end times; “Antichrist” = “Man of Sin” [1 Th 2] = “the Beast/666” [Rev 13]), it is not clear whether any real synonyms may be found. Barker, 323–24, draws a parallel between “the last hour” and the more frequent “the last days/times.” The NT authors sometimes use “last days” to refer to “the new age that they associated with the advent of Jesus,” says Barker, and so he concludes that “the last hour” is a general reference to “the fulfillment of time, the time of redemption and salvation,” inaugurated by Jesus’ death and continuing to the present. The motives for this conclusion are, however, clearly apologetic. Barker admits that “last days” is also commonly used “to designate the last days before Christ’s return,” but he refuses to see this meaning in 1 John 2 because it leads to the conclusion “that the author was mistaken,” since Jesus did not return in the wake of the Antichrists’ activity (cf. Stott, 107–9). Most commentators, however, agree that “the last hour” “must be taken in its obvious sense: the end of time is at hand” (so Rensberger, 77; cf. Dodd, 48–49; Brown, 330–32, 364–65; Culpepper, 44).

The Johannine Jesus uses “the last day” on several occasions to refer to the end of time, when the dead will be resurrected to enjoy eternal life or suffer judgment (Jn 6:39–44, 54; 12:48; cf. 11:24; 5:24–30). Does this mean John was mistaken in his estimate of the divine plan? The NT writers make no pretense to special knowledge about the time of Christ’s return, consistently emphasizing that human beings are not privy to God’s eschatological timetable (cf. Mt 24:36; 1 Th 5:1–3; 2 Pe 3:8–10). Looking at his situation, it seemed to John that the world was going from bad to worse, with godless people and heretics gaining ground on all sides. In light of the general ancient view that the forces of evil would gather at the end of time to make a final stand against God’s people, John could reasonably conclude that “the last hour” was at hand. The focus is not on a timeline but on the urgency of a situation in which Christians must fight to preserve their identity.

John’s proof that “the last hour” has come is provided by the Antichrists. As noted in the introduction, in 1-2-3 John this title functions as a technical term for the Elder’s opponents. The plural “Antichrists” (antichristoi, GK 532) is an extension of the original community slogan, where the term apparently appeared in the singular (antichristos; hence the NIV, “the Antichrist”). While “Antichrist” literally means “against Christ” or “in place of Christ,” its precise nuance is difficult to determine; Rensberger, 78, notes that “the notion of Antichrist … is not found at all in Jewish literature, nor in Christian literature except where it is dependent on 1 and 2 John.” While the OT and other Jewish writings do occasionally anticipate the appearance of a leader of evil at the end of time, this figure is always set in opposition to God, not the Messiah (see Brown, 332–36, for a survey of possible backgrounds for the concept of Antichrist). In any case, John clearly expects his audience to be familiar with an eschatological figure who would oppose God and Christ, and he associates his opponents with this figure to highlight their treachery. The teachings of these people are, in fact, inspired by “the spirit of the Antichrist” (4:3), suggesting that they promote a substitute Savior distinct from the Jesus proclaimed by the community. Believers must therefore urgently resist such people and separate them from Christian fellowship.[3]


18 The beginning of the new section is signalled by a fresh address to the readers as “dear children” (cf. 2:14). There is no particular force in the appellation; it merely illustrates the fatherly concern felt by a genuine teacher for those who are still like children in their understanding and need his instruction. He announces that it is the last hour. Although this word can mean a short period or point of time, it can refer to a period of some length (Jn. 4:23; 16:2). While the phrase “the last day” refers more specifically to the final point in world history, the day of the coming of Christ and the judgment, the last hour has a sense more like that of “the last days.”

But what precisely did John have in mind with this phrase? Early Christians certainly regarded the whole period between the first and second advents of Jesus as constituting the last days: in Peter’s Pentecost sermon the prophecy of Joel concerning the outpouring of the Spirit is deliberately linked with the last days (Acts 2:17; contrast Joel 2:28; cf. Heb. 1:2; 1 Pet. 1:20). Now that the last period in world history had been inaugurated by the coming of Jesus, it could not be long before the end. It is also possible, however, that John was thinking of the final stage in the last days (cf. 1 Tim. 4:1; 2 Tim. 3:1; Jas. 5:3; 1 Pet. 1:5; Jude 18); time had hurried past since the beginning of the church and now it was the last hour before the end. Most commentators adopt this view. It fits in with the fact that John saw various events happening around him which had been prophesied by Jesus as being still future.

Commentators who adopt the former view do so in view of the fact that the end still has not come. If John felt that the minutes were rapidly ticking by, the slow rolling on of the centuries would suggest that he was mistaken. Hence the attractiveness of the first view, although even in this case it is passing strange that the last days inaugurated by the first coming of Jesus have dragged on for so long. It is not surprising that some scholars assure us that we cannot share the eschatological hopes of the New Testament writers. If we feel that we are living in the last days now, it is for different reasons. For us the history of the world stretches further back than John could ever have imagined, so that the age of man is but a tiny appendix to the long and remote ages of prehistory. The prophets of doom assure us of the imminent end of human civilization if we do not learn to curb the growth of population, to slow down our use of world resources, and to arrest the pollution of the environment. It is not difficult for us to share John’s point of view; the problem is whether we have a theological basis for doing so which will take into account the shift in time.

It must be noted, first, that John does not commit himself to any time-scale. Like the New Testament authors generally he does not delimit precisely the expected date of the parousia. He was content to stress the urgency of the time in which he lived. Second, we have good authority for not measuring God’s time by our clocks: “with the Lord a day is like a thousand years” (2 Pet. 3:8). Third, the New Testament teaching is that we should be ready for the coming of the Lord at any time; every hour is the hour of crisis, and the Lord will come when he is least expected. F. F. Bruce has drawn attention to a remarkable passage from J. H. Newman, who speaks of the course of things as having changed direction since the coming of Jesus. It “has (if I may so speak) altered its direction, as regards His second coming, and runs, not towards the end, but along it, and on the brink of it; and is at all times near that great event, which, did it run towards it, it would at once run into. Christ, then, is ever at our doors.”6 Till the coming of Christ the course of history ran direct toward the goal:

 

Now since the coming of Jesus it has taken a sharp bend:

 

This is a helpful analogy. It preserves the sense of urgency and imminence found in the New Testament on the basis of the principle that God is capable of extending the last hour (for the excellent reason in 2 Pet. 3:9) while retaining his own secret counsel on its duration.

But John’s main concern was with the evidence that would prove to his readers that they were living in the last hour. He rests his case on the fact that they had heard a prophecy of the coming of “antichrist.” We have already come across this term in 2 John 7 to describe people who deny that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh, and verse 22 indicates that the same people are in mind. They are opposed to the true teaching about Christ. The word could also signify people who stand in the place of Christ and claim that they are Christ. Within the New Testament the term is used only in the Johannine letters. John’s use may be traced back to two possible roots. First, in the teaching of Jesus about the future there is a warning about the coming of “false Christs and false prophets” who “will appear and perform signs and miracles to deceive the elect—if that were possible” (Mk. 13:22 par. Mt. 24:24). Such persons are clearly opposed to Jesus as the Christ, but here they appear to be either prophets who declare untruths or persons who falsely claim that they themselves are Messiahs. We may compare the imagery of the beast and the false prophet in Revelation 13; 19:20, where the false prophet promotes the worship of the beast. But this passage in Revelation leads us to the second possible root of John’s language in the expectation of one particular arch-opponent of Christ, the Anti-Christ par excellence. This expectation is reflected in the coming of the “man of lawlessness” in 2 Thessalonians 2:1–12 and possibly also in “the abomination that causes desolation” in Mark 13:14. These figures stand in a succession of such pictures in Jewish and Christian writings which portray the final opponent of God. It is a striking fact that there is no pre-Christian evidence for the application of the title “Antichrist” to this figure. Nevertheless, many scholars hold that John has taken up the apocalyptic hope (or rather, fear) of the coming of this figure and has made it the basis of his language here. But (they claim), whereas the original prophecy spoke of the coming of the Antichrist, John has “demythologized” the idea by seeing the fulfilment of the prophecy in the coming of many antichrists who were already present in the church. It is probable that this is the wrong way of putting it. John talks about persons who deny that Jesus is the Christ and says that persons who talk in this way are possessed by the spirit of the antichrist (4:3). He also says here that his readers have heard that the antichrist is coming, and that even now many antichrists have come. It seems, therefore, that he regarded the false teachers of his day as being possessed by the spirit of the antichrist, whose own coming still lay in the future. The basis of his teaching is the prophecy of the coming of several opponents of Christ, and he relates this to the coming of the antichrist. He has not demythologized the figure of the antichrist, nor does he deny the future coming of the antichrist, but he is much more concerned with the present fact of false teachers in the church who have the spirit of the antichrist. The difference from Mark 13:22 is that here the antichrists do not appear to be claiming that they themselves are the true Christ: the thought is purely the negative one of their denial that Jesus is the Christ, as is apparent from verse 22.[4]


[1] MacArthur, J. (2007). 1, 2, 3 John (pp. 95–98). Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

[2] Calvin, J., & Owen, J. (2010). Commentaries on the Catholic Epistles (pp. 189–191). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

[3] Thatcher, T. (2006). 1 John. In T. Longman III & D. E. Garland (Eds.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Hebrews–Revelation (Revised Edition) (Vol. 13, pp. 448–449). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

[4] Marshall, I. H. (1978). The Epistles of John (pp. 148–151). Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

June 21 Burnout

scripture reading: Matthew 11:27–30
key verse: Matthew 11:30

My yoke is easy and My burden is light.

When an old worn–out tire is left on a car, the result is often a blowout on the highway. You’ve seen it before—shredded rubber everywhere. If someone had taken care of that tire a little sooner, the whole mess could have been avoided.

Do you ever feel like a tire that is about to burst apart? Or one that already has? If so, you may be headed for emotional, spiritual, and physical burnout. Here are some steps to help you evaluate your situation:

Get away and reappraise your life. Take some time off, as much as possible, and make a list of everything you perceive to be an obligation. Write down how much time and energy each activity takes.

Look for a pattern. Are you more involved in career or hobbies? Do you balance work and play? What preference do you give to spiritual activity?

Ask God to give you insight on His priorities. What other people think doesn’t matter; what God wants you to do is of primary importance.

Through His Word and the guidance of the Holy Spirit, He will show you what areas need adjustment. Before pressure makes you pop, go to the One who gives true rest to your soul, and He will steer you away from collapse.

Lord, I want to take time right now to appraise my life. Show me the patterns that need to be adjusted. Give me insight into Your priorities. Give me the courage to change.[1]


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