Daily Archives: March 23, 2020

Democrats Demand Stimulus Bill Include Reparations For Transgender Native Americans Affected By Climate Change — The Babylon Bee

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Democratic lawmakers are blocking the stimulus bill proposed in Congress, slamming their Republican colleagues for refusing to include reparations for transgender Native Americans affected by climate change.

“If we aren’t handing billions of dollars to Native Americans with gender dysphoria displaced by our current climate emergency, then what are we even doing here?” shouted Chuck Schumer in a scathing speech outside the Capitol Building. “The American people are waiting for us to pass this bill, and the evil Republicans are stubbornly insisting we don’t earmark billions for our transgender indigenous brothers and sisters and others.”

The Democrats’ version of the bill would set aside $500 billion to fund gender reassignment surgeries and reparations for any indigenous person who has been forced to move thanks to the climate emergency.

“Millions will die if we do not get this added to the bill,” Nancy Pelosi warned gravely. “American families are hurting, yes, but they need to wait a while longer so we can get all our pet projects added to the bill.”

More demands of the Democrats include the following:

  • Funding for Cats 2
  • Research into green, environmentally friendly moon power
  • $50 million earmarked for research into USB cables that you can plug in correctly the first time
  • Saving the endangered striped desert moose ant
  • $100 million to bring back popular soda Tab
  • A large supply of rainbow flags to have on hand just in case
  • More butlers in the Capitol Building
  • Funding for ten more seasons of RuPaul’s Drag Race
  • Free housing for undocumented Mexican spider monkeys

Republicans are not interested in adding these things to the proposal unless they get to add an equal amount of unnecessary pet spending.

via Democrats Demand Stimulus Bill Include Reparations For Transgender Native Americans Affected By Climate Change — The Babylon Bee

MUST WATCH – Tom Cotton Outlines Nancy Pelosi Emergency Relief Scheme… — The Last Refuge

 

There are many people, many voters, simply stunned at how the Democrats are trying to use the COVID-19 economic emergency to add unrelated ideological elements to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act.

Senator Tom Cotton walks through some of the items the Democrats are demanding before they will allow economic relief to U.S. companies and workers. MUST WATCH:

via MUST WATCH – Tom Cotton Outlines Nancy Pelosi Emergency Relief Scheme… — The Last Refuge

California Police Will Use State-Of-The-Art Chinese Patrol Drones Equipped With Night Vision Cameras To Enforce Coronavirus Lockdown Order — Now The End Begins

A California police department is planning on using drones equipped with cameras and loudspeakers to monitor a coronavirus shutdown.

Just as we experienced in 9/11, the day finally came when the craziness subsided, we will one day hopefully watch our current coronavirus craziness subside also. But just as when 9/11 ended we didn’t go back to the same world we had previously known, neither will we this time return to life as we once knew it. Regardless of the true origin of the coronavirus, it matters not from whence it truly came, the current panic is being used to push us forward into a world of the future. The world we’ve been warning you about.

The aftermath of 9/11 brought us endless foreign wars in the Middle East, and the Patriot Act which could have been written by George Orwell himself. What will the aftermath of the coronavirus look like? There will be a “new economy” that will have to replace the one they are currently destroying, there will be a national tracking system, drones flying overhead night and day, and perhaps, if the Democrats are successful in November, a new form of government we will in no wise recognize. I really don’t recognize the America I’m looking at right now.

Isn’t it funny how no one cares about Climate Changeanymore? Guess it wasn’t really an “impending global catastrophe” after all, and wanna know something else? Neither is the coronavirus, but they’re making into one anyway.

California police to use Chinese-made DJI patrol drones with night-vision cameras during coronavirus citizen lockdown

FROM WASHINGTON EXAMINER: The Chula Vista Police Department recently doubled its fleet of drones, purchasing two of the machines from Chinese company DJI. The police department told the Financial Times that they would be outfitted with night-vision cameras.

“We have not traditionally mounted speakers to our drones, but … if we need to cover a large area to get an announcement out, or if there were a crowd somewhere that we needed to disperse, we could do it without getting police officers involved,” said Capt. Vern Sallee. “The outbreak has changed my view of expanding the program as rapidly as I can,” Sallee added.

U.S. officials have warned about the threat Chinese-made drones could pose to the United States. The company that the police department is purchasing from, DJI, is the world’s largest player in the civilian drone industry.

Today is the 18th anniversary of 9/11, the day that 2,996 people lost their lives in the most horrific attacks ever recorded on American soil, equal to or even greater than the attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor in 1941.

Spencer Gore, chief executive of U.S.-based drone company Impossible Aerospace, said he is “working like crazy” to help equip other law enforcement agencies with drones and emphasized that the hardware his company uses is made domestically.

“What we saw in China, and what we’re probably going to see around the world, is using drones with cameras and loudspeakers to fly around to see if people are gathering where they shouldn’t be, and telling them to go home,” Gore said. “It seems a little Orwellian, but this could save lives.”

Another use for drones, at least for the Chula Vista police, might be to help spread the message about the coronavirus to homeless people who may not receive information any other way. “We need to tell them we actually have resources for them — they are vulnerable right now,” Sallee said. “It might be impractical or unsafe for our officers to be put into those areas.”

At the peak of China’s coronavirus outbreak, the country used talking drones to force citizens in certain areas to wear face masks.

“Where is your mask? Wear your mask!,” operators of the drones shouted at passersby in Chinese.

The news comes as cases of the coronavirus across the U.S. have increased dramatically. U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams warned on Monday that the coronavirus pandemic is ” going to get bad” this week. Estimates of how many people will become infected vary, but some states have taken stringent measures to stop the spread, including closing all non-essential business.

In the U.S., there have been more than 35,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 473 deaths, according to the latest reading by the Johns Hopkins University tracker. READ MORE

via California Police Will Use State-Of-The-Art Chinese Patrol Drones Equipped With Night Vision Cameras To Enforce Coronavirus Lockdown Order — Now The End Begins

The Betrayal Of America We Told You Was Coming Back In 2010 Has Finally Arrived As Democrats seek To Finish Obama’s ‘Fundamental Transformation’ Of United States — Now The End Begins

This is what is happening, this is what you’re watching. Now the end begins, are you ready for what comes next?

Let me direct your attention to the image at the top of this article, it is the original Now The End Begins bannerfrom 2010. Take a moment to review all the text and imagry I designed into it. On the banner, I said that America was being ‘betrayed by the very people’ who had sworn an oath to protect it. At that time, it was directed at the policies of globalist Barack Obama who did his very best to, as he had promised, ‘fundamentally transform‘ the United States of America. Had Hillary Clinton won in 2016, the torch would have been passed to her to finish the job. She was all set and eager to pull the trigger.

Then a miracle happened, God gave us a window of grace with Donald Trump. A window that may right now be in the process of  closing.

“This is the purpose that is purposed upon the whole earth: and this is the hand that is stretched out upon all the nations. For the LORD of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? and his hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back?” Isaiah 14:26,27 (KJB)

Right now as you read this, there is a war being waged in Washington for the soul and the future of the country. The Democrats seek to exploit the coronavirus panic to their own gain. Indeed it was House Majority Whip Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) who reportedly told Democrats on a conference call last week that the party should exploit the coronavirus stimulus:

“This is a tremendous opportunity to restructure things to fit our vision.”

Democrats want to use the current confusion to ram through legislation that will entrench their Socialist Progressive vision, and as the turmoil rages and people are panicking, they just might be able to do just that. Take a look at what nasty Nancy Pelosi wants in her 1,400 page coronavirus stimulus package.

  • BALLOT HARVESTING: Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s new stimulus bill would mandate nationwide “ballot harvesting,” allowing party operatives to return other people’s ballots to polling places without “any limit” on the number of ballots. “Ballot harvesting” was legalized in California in 2016, and first used in the 2018 midterm elections. It allows anyone to drop off someone else’s mail-in ballot at a polling station. There is no process for vetting or verifying those delivering the ballots — no background checks or identification requirements. Democrats dropped hundreds of thousands of ballots off at polling stations in 2018, helping Democrats as they flipped seven Republican seats. READ MORE
  • MORE BARGAINING POWER FOR UNIONS: Several provisions in the bill include carve-outs for big labor, including labor protections, collective bargaining, and organizing, as well as overturning President Trump’s executive orders regarding federal employee unions.
  • AUTOMATIC EXTENSION OF NON-IMMIGRANT VISAS: Rep. Paul Gosar flagged a provision regarding the automatic extension of nonimmigrant visas.(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, with respect to any alien whose nonimmigrant status, status under section 244 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1254a), or employment authorization has expired within the 30 days preceding the date of the enactment of this act, or will expire not later than one year after such date, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall automatically extend such status or work authorization for the same time period as the alien’s prior status or work authorization.
  • FUNDING FOR PLANNED PARENTHOOD:The Hill reported that Democrats want the bill to prop up Planned Parenthood, just another reason why bipartisan efforts have failed to reach a consensus.

Keep in mind that I have only given you 4 of the items the Democrats are demanding, and Pelosi’s working bill is over 1,400 pages long. Let your imagination wander about all the hundreds and hundreds of equally bad provisions the Democrats are seeking. Or, you can read the whole thing in full right here:

Nancy Pelosi Proposes 1,400-Page Coronavirus Bill Stuffed with Special Interest Goodies

Full text: Nancy Pelosi Cor… by charliespiering on Scribd

Now you know why, after we have been exposed to nearly a dozen previous deadly pandemics over the past 20 years, the coronavirus is the first one that is causing people to be locked in their homes and the economy shut down. They are finishing the job that Obama started and that Hillary was supposed to finish, and it has to be done before the November election. Like we have been telling you for 3 and a half years now, the New World Order is going to ‘stop Trump’ one way or the other, even if it takes the crashing of our entire nation to do it.

This is what is happening, this is what you’re watching. Now the end begins, are you ready for what comes next?

Obama And His Promise To ‘Fundamentally Transform’ America

Barack Obama was not able to keep his promise to fundamentally transform America by applying Saul Alinsky’s ‘Rule For Radicals‘, and was counting on Hillary Clinton to finish the job. She was not able to do it. But this is where the betrayal of America began. 

Obama Apologizes For America While Exalting Islam

This was the speech where Obama revealed what his plan to fundamentally transform America was all about. 

Democrats Using Coronavirus To Force Through Radical Agenda

Former Congressman and Fox News contributor Jason Chaffetz weighs in on Senate stall on stimulus bill.

via The Betrayal Of America We Told You Was Coming Back In 2010 Has Finally Arrived As Democrats seek To Finish Obama’s ‘Fundamental Transformation’ Of United States — Now The End Begins

If You Like the Corona Crisis, You’ll Love Communism — CultureWatch

We are now beginning to experience what people in socialist countries always experience:

Massive shortages of basic food items and everyday necessities like toilet paper. Lengthy lines of irritable shoppers outside of shops – at least the ones that are still open. Heavy rationing and constant government meddling with how we live. I can be talking about one of two things here: life under the corona crisis, or business as usual in socialist countries.

We are now all coming to terms with government lockdowns, rationing, shortages, and panic buying. That is pretty much a new experience for most of us in the West. But for those doomed to live in socialist paradises, this is just what life is like on a daily basis – and it has been for decades now.

The horrors of living under these leftist dictatorships such as Venezuela are now becoming our lot as well. Certainly most younger people in the West have never known anything like this before. But many of our parents have known all about it.

Our parents or grandparents who grew up during the Great Depression knew what such life was like – and thankfully most of them learned from it. Most learned to value life and what we have, and most learned about the need to not waste. After the harrowing 1930s they knew that everything could be of value, so they tended to hang onto things.

My parents were a case in point. From my earliest years I recall them trying to instil in us kids the need to be frugal and never to waste. I even remember my dad telling me not to use so much toilet paper when going to the bathroom. And when my parents did eventually pass away, it was interesting to go through the family home.

There we found so many cardboard boxes in the basement, in closets, and elsewhere, many of them with the words “Waste not” written on them. I found boxes full of other boxes, or boxes full of paper bags. They really did not throw away anything.

And for good reason. They did not go through a week or two of lockdowns and shortages like we are now going through (and I do not know how much longer we will be). They went through years of deprivation, hardship, shortages and difficulties. So most of them learned their lessons, and never sought to waste anything again.

Many of us are now for the very first time going through for a period what our parents went through, and what folks living in communist and socialist countries go through for most of their lives. Whether in the Soviet Union or former communist Eastern Europe or Cuba or Venezuela, this sort of life was/is the norm.

So if that is what you are keen on, then keep foolishly championing politicians in the West like Bernie Sanders, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, or Jeremy Corbyn. Keep denouncing capitalism while you enjoy all of its many benefits. Keep railing against the free market as you use its products to do so: smart phones, laptops, the internet, etc.

Keep shouting vague and meaningless slogans about “equality” and the like. Of course if all these Western lefties were at all for real, they would have long ago moved to these workers’ paradises like Venezuela or Cuba. But for some reason they never do.

Let me turn to a brand-new piece on all this which is well-worth quoting from. Daniel Greenfield has just written an article with the title, “Coronavirus Communism Comes to California.” He notes how Californians had recently run with socialist Bernie Sanders in the Democrat primary.

And he reminds us of how Sanders not all that long ago was shouting his praise for Venezuela. The rest of his piece goes as follows:

The socialist dream in Venezuela began with toilet paper shortages, then dairy shortages, and eventually no food, medicine, or drinking water, while the Marxist regime paid its military thugs in food supplies. A few supermarket lines are only a small taste of “democratic socialism” in action.

The coronavirus isn’t Communism, but it has created social, political, and economic conditions similar to that of Communism, with an authoritarian state, a frightened populace, and resource shortages. There’s no better laboratory for seeing how the real thing would play out than in California.

California’s Sandernistas are invariably on the wealthy and comfortable side. Bernie bumper stickers rarely show up on beat-up Chevys, but on a Tesla, on a Mercedes, or on a Beemer. You can spot Bernie lawn signs outside lavish mansions whose owners imagine that socialism is for someone else.

Someone else’s cars and mansions will be confiscated. Not theirs. Someone else won’t be able to buy basic staples. Not the Silicon Valley tech bros pouring a fortune into the Sanders campaign and its PACs.

Bernie’s wealthy donors in the Inner Mission and Haight-Ashbury in San Francisco, and Echo Park in Los Angeles, are now discovering the lifestyle that they’ve only romanticized from a distance before as they wait in line in empty supermarkets and stare baffled at ‘Out of Stock’ messages on Amazon listings.

To paraphrase Sinclair Lewis, the poet laureate of California socialists, “When Communism comes to California, it will be wrapped in a repurposed paint fume respirator mask, wearing medical gloves, and driving a BMW with a Bernie 2020 bumper sticker while frantically grabbing rolls of toilet paper.”

There are two kinds of socialism: the ideal and the real. Ideal socialism is an entertaining set of intellectual games, castles in the sand, ivory towers in the air, where the right words and attitudes can enable the enlightened to implement heaven on earth. Real socialism is standing in line for toilet paper.

Capitalism is the best argument for socialism. When the supermarkets are full and there are lots of good jobs, then it’s easy to imagine that the system can be improved with a lot of authoritarian planning. Why not take all those goodies and distribute them more efficiently? There’s so much of the stuff that it seems easy to redistribute it, to add a few zeroes to budgets already filled with imaginary numbers.

And socialism is the best argument against itself. Socialists always think that they will lose their freedom to a wise ideal, only to discover that they will lose it to a grubby real of incompetent bureaucrats, frightened mobs, and armed men in the streets.

Bernie’s vague rambling plans to nationalize everything from electricity to the internet, to bring into being a nation where the government decides how much deodorant and shoes you get to have, sound great until it stops being a hip ideal and becomes the tawdry reality of waiting in line for toilet paper. You don’t need a literacy program to realize socialism is a bad idea when you’re living through it.

California politicians have taken a break from a torrent of insane bills that proposed to ban receipts (they’re bad for the environment), ban fur, legalize eating roadkill, (if you run over a rabbit, you can eat it, but don’t you dare wear its fur), and banning separate clothes sections for little girls and boys, to ineptly tumble the state and its major cities headlong into a mismanaged response to the coronavirus.

The incompetence of California Democrats was all fun and games when it led to blowing up the homeless population while wasting billions of dollars, banning police from turning over illegal alien pedophiles to ICE, or accidentally outlawing freelance work across the entire state for the unions.

But now there are real consequences. It’s not just another bunch of zeroes or a handful of victims whose stories will never appear on any cable network except the one no respectable socialist would watch. Millions of lives have been disrupted. And countless lives are potentially on the line.

Socialism sounds like a great idea if you imagine that the people running things are smart, moral, and competent, as socialists imagine that they are. It falls apart in the real world where people aren’t. After voting for Bernie Sanders, Californians are discovering what it’s actually like to live in Venezuela, Cuba, or the Soviet Union, where they have no rights, there’s nothing in the stores, and nothing works. sultanknish.blogspot.com/2020/03/coronavirus-communism-comes-to.html

Of course to say all this is not to argue against some temporary and stringent government intervention in times of a major national crisis. But what it is to argue is this: all of those who hate the free market while singing the praises of socialism are now experiencing first-hand just what socialist life is like. I for one think it stinks.

via If You Like the Corona Crisis, You’ll Love Communism — CultureWatch

Quarantine Questionnaire: Extra-Biblical Evidence for Jesus — Cold Case Christianity

Take advantage of the quarantine to learn more about the case for God’s existence, the reliability of the Bible and the nature of the Christian worldview

Is There Any Evidence for Jesus Outside the Bible? (Cold-Case Christianity Broadcast #55)

J. Warner Wallace, author of God’s Crime Scene, discusses the nature of the universe and the evidence for God’s existence. Does the existence of evil and injustice in the universe eliminate the possibility of God as the Creator? Why would an all-powerful, all-loving God allow evil to occur? Is evil a form of exculpating or inculpating evidence? How can we respond to the “problem of evil” in a reasonable way? Can evil be explained from “inside the room” of the natural universe, or does the best explanation for the evil lie “outside the room”?

Is There Any Evidence for Jesus Outside the Bible?

If the Christian worldview is true, evil must be assessed through the lens of eternity, not through the limited perspective of our mortal lives. And eternity changes everything.

1. Why is it important to cite only the earliest non-Biblical sources related to Jesus?

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2. What do we mean when we describe and early source as “pagan” or “hostile”? Why is this designation important related to the veracity of their claims?

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3. List the EIGHT earliest hostile “pagan” accounts of Jesus:

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4. Why is it important to cite the most redacted version of the Josephus account?

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5. Rewrite a brief summary of the description early, non-Christian sources offer for Jesus:

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via Quarantine Questionnaire: Extra-Biblical Evidence for Jesus — Cold Case Christianity

Mr. Bumbles – Candidate Joe Biden Attempts Teleprompter Briefing on Coronavirus… — The Last Refuge

Some people have been wondering what happened to Joe Biden and why he has been quarantined by the Biden campaign.  Well, today the presidential candidate said he was going to deliver a periscope briefing to share his insight about the U.S. response to the coronavirus… and, well… things didn’t quite go according to plan.

Apparently Mr. Biden had trouble reading the teleprompter, or something. WATCH:

Another perspective:

.

Whoopsie Daisy!

via Mr. Bumbles – Candidate Joe Biden Attempts Teleprompter Briefing on Coronavirus… — The Last Refuge

Democrats exploit Pandemic to introduce a Digital Dollar — Capstone Report

Never let a crisis go to waste. That’s what the Democrats always think. This Coronavirus Pandemic caused by COVID-19 is no different. What the Democrats can’t do through the normal political process, they hope to do by exploiting this crisis.

While Americans die and small business withers, the Democratic Party led by Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer have launched a stealth plan to remake the American economy. The makeover is comprehensive including everything from new regulations to a plan to launch a Digital Dollar.

Forbes provides the important details. According to the report the Democrats are exploring making stimulus payments to Americans via this new digital currency.

And Forbes makes clear, this is a big deal. They write, “In what will send shock waves through the cryptocurrency and blockchain industry, particularly for those following central bank digital currencies around the world, this signals the U.S. is serious in establishing infrastructure for a central bank digital currency.”

And it will send shockwaves through personal liberty advocates and students of End Times prophecies.

It is the stuff of dispsenationalist fears—where a government through its digital currency controls who is and is not allowed to buy goods or conduct business.

This type of centrally controled digital dollar could allow the state to limit access to funds based on one’s standing (or social credit) with the regime.

It gives a modern look to Mark of the Beast.

Are you comfortable with this Democratic proposal?

Would you be comfortable with Democrats and the Deep State controlling your Digital Dollars?

It is already frightening enough to know the control of modern state bureaucracy over our dollars and business. Now, this new plan would fundamentally introduce an entire new digital currency.

It is dangerous.

Even putting aside these legitimate fears, is this the time to present such a wild, unorthodox plan?

There are better ways to help Americans. Get cash out now to those in need. Stop the delays. And stop using this crisis to increase the power of the government.

via Democrats exploit Pandemic to introduce a Digital Dollar — Capstone Report

March 23d The D. L. Moody Year Book

O Zion, that bringest good tidings, get thee up into the high mountains.—Isaiah 40:9.

A TRAVELLER once made arrangements with a guide to take him to the top of a high mountain to see the sunrise. They had not journeyed long when there arose a terrible thunderstorm. “It’s no use to go on,” the gentleman said. “We cannot see the sunrise in the midst of this fearful storm.” “O, sir,” said the guide, “we shall soon get above the storm.” They could see the lightning playing about them, and the grand old mountain shook with the thunder, and it was very dark; but when they passed up above the clouds all was light and clear. So if it is dark here, rise higher; it is light enough up around the throne. If I may rise up to the light, I have no business to be in darkness. Rise higher, higher, higher. It is the privilege of the child of God to walk on unclouded.[1]

 

[1] Moody, D. L. (1900). The D. L. Moody Year Book: A Living Daily Message from the Words of D. L. Moody. (E. M. Fitt, Ed.) (p. 61). East Northfield, MA: The Bookstore.

March—23 The Poor Man’s Evening Portion

And manifested forth his glory: and his disciples believed on him.—John 2:11.

It forms a very sweet thought to the believer, that amidst the general darkness and ignorance concerning the person of Jesus, in the days of his flesh, the glory of his Godhead was frequently manifested to his disciples, so that they knew him, and believed on him. And it is equally blessed, that now, amidst the darkness and ignorance of many, who call themselves Christians, after Christ, (but yet denying, or being unconscious of his Godhead, prove that they know him not,) the Lord hath not left himself without a witness of who he is, to the minds of his faithful followers; but hath manifested forth his glory; and all true disciples believe on him. My soul! if thon wert called upon to give thy testimony to Jesus, concerning all the grand points which prove the Godhead of his person, and the eternal merits and efficacy of his blood and righteousness, how wouldst thou show the evidences, that he hath manifested forth his glory to thee, and that thou believest on him? I would answer, Jesus hath fully manifested himself to me, as “One with the Father; over all, God blessed for ever;” and as such, having seen the Son, I believe on him, “in whom dwelleth all the fulness of the. Godhead bodily.” Hence, therefore, as it is said, “they that know thy name will put their trust in thee;” so “I know whom I have believed;” and, by his blessed Spirit, am persuaded, that “he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him, to that day.” Now, had not the Lord Jesus, by his Holy Spirit, taught me who he was, and what he was able to perform—had he not manifested forth his glory, never should I have known him, so as to believe on him. But the revelation he hath made of himself, hath induced all those saving effects, which none but the teachings of his Holy Spirit could impart. It hath wrought in me faith and love, humbleness and self-loathing, a regard for his cause, a zeal for his honour, a love to his people, and indifference to the world; and all those gracious fruits of faith which follow the knowledge of Jesus! Blessed Lord! my soul rejoiceth anew, this evening, in the contemplation of thy glory. And under a sense of the distinguishing mercy, I feel constrained to cry out, with the astonishment of the apostle, “Lord! how is it, that thou hast manifested thyself to me, and not unto the world.”[1]

 

[1] Hawker, R. (1845). The Poor Man’s Evening Portion (A New Edition, pp. 87–88). Philadelphia: Thomas Wardle.

March 23, 2020 Evening Verse Of The Day

The Power of God

Now the God of peace, who brought up from the dead the great Shepherd of the sheep through the blood of the eternal covenant, even Jesus our Lord, equip you in every good thing to do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen. (13:20–21)

These verses are really a benediction and could stand without comment. Even Jesus’ own examples, perfect and powerful as they are, cannot in themselves enable us to follow in His footsteps. We need more than example. The writer calls on God to make possible the outworking of this truth in the lives of His people. To attempt to live the Christian life with the purest doctrine and the finest examples, but without God’s direct power, is to build with wood, hay, and straw (1 Cor. 3:12). We not only need to know God’s will, we need to have His power. We need the God of peace to equip us in every good thing to do His will.

So God gives us His ethics and He gives us the power to follow them, to live them out. Christian growth and obedience have nothing to do with our own power. Christian growth and obedience are by God’s power, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ.

The greatest display of divine power in the history of the universe was at the resurrection of Jesus Christ, when God brought up from the dead the great Shepherd of the sheep through the blood of the eternal covenant. God is the God of peace, in that He has established peace with man through the blood of the cross (Col. 1:20). By that cross an eternal covenant was made (cf. Zech. 9:11; Ezek. 37:26). So the blood of Jesus our Lord is eternally powerful (unlike the repeated, temporary Old Covenant sacrifices) and satisfactory to God, thus He brought Him up from the dead. It is the God of this power and the power of this God that enable those who love Him to do His will. “Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God” (2 Cor. 3:5).

The thing we must contribute to the Christian life is willing yieldedness. All we have to do is open the channel of our wills and let God’s power work through us. “Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food, will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness” (2 Cor. 9:10). We can work out our salvation because God is at work in us “both to will and to work for His good pleasure” (Phil. 2:12–13). Because Christ does the work, He deserves the credit and praise, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.[1]


21 The prayer in v. 21a is a “wish prayer” expressed by an optative verb (as in 1 Th 3:11–13; 5:23; 2 Th 2:16–17; 3:16). It remarkably avoids using the author’s favorite term “perfect,” but that is what it is about; indeed, the verb translated “equip” implies making good what was previously imperfect. The purpose of being “equipped with everything good” (later manuscripts specified “every good work,” but the original text was more general) is not for the readers’ own benefit but to enable them to “do his will.” In this clause we see the typical NT dialectic between human responsibility to serve God and the divine grace that alone makes it possible, neither of which excludes the other (cf. Php 2:12–13). The second clause of the prayer makes the point even more explicit: what is “pleasing to him” is what he himself “works in us.”

“Through Jesus Christ” (note the full title in this more formal expression, as in the “creedal” statements of v. 8 and 10:10) serves both to specify the channel through which God’s grace flows to us and also to state the basis of the prayer (“through Jesus, to God,” as in v. 15). The fact that the phrase occurs at the end of the prayer makes it more natural to read the following doxology as an ascription of praise to Jesus, even though the terms (“glory for ever and ever”) are those traditionally used in praise of God (Ro 11:36; 16:27; Gal 1:5; etc.; in some other NT doxologies, Jesus is associated with God [as in Eph 3:21; Rev 5:13], while in others [e.g., 1 Pe 4:11] the syntax leaves it unclear whether God or Jesus is the subject). A doxology specifically to Jesus (cf. 2 Pe 3:18; Rev 1:6) suits our author’s virtual equation of the Son with God (see on 1:8, 10–12).[2]


Prayer and Doxology (13:20–21)

20 Now may the God of peace, who by the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep,

21 fit you to do his will in everything that is good, as he brings to pass111 in us whatever gives him pleasure, through Jesus Christ; to whom be the glory for ever and ever.113 Amen.

20, 21 This prayer has the general structure of a collect in the third person, consisting of (a) the invocation (“Now may the God of peace”), (b) an adjective clause setting forth the ground on which the following petition is based (“who … brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus …”), (c) the main petition (“fit you to do his will in everything that is good”), (d) a subsidiary petition (“as he brings to pass in us whatever gives him pleasure”), (e) a pleading of the mediatorial merit of Christ (“through Jesus Christ”), (f) a doxology (“to whom be the glory for ever and ever”), and (g) the “Amen.”

That God is invoked as “the God of peace” may suggest that the community was troubled by disunity, which needed to be healed if the pleasure of God was to be wrought out in their midst. It is true that in the Old Testament “peace” has the fuller sense of well-being and salvation, but the Greek sense of the word would come more readily to our author’s mind than the Hebrew sense.

This is the only place in the epistle where the title “shepherd” is given to Jesus; but it is a title which comprehends the other rôles which are here assigned to him. Indeed, Markus Barth goes so far as to say, in a study of our author’s use of the Old Testament, that for him “exegesis is the endeavor to help people in need by telling them what the Bible says of their shepherd Jesus Christ.” The form of the title is derived from the Septuagint version of Isa. 63:11: “Where is he who brought up out of the sea the shepherd of the sheep?” The words in their original context refer to Moses—or, if the plural “shepherds” be read, to Moses and Aaron, in the sense of Ps. 77:20, “Thou didst lead thy people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron.” Here they are applied to Jesus as the second Moses, who was brought up not from the sea but from the realm of the dead. (In the Exodus typology of the New Testament the “sea of reeds” which Israel crossed on the way out of Egypt is a token of the death and resurrection of Christ into which his people are baptized.)

This is the only reference to our Lord’s resurrection in the epistle; elsewhere the emphasis is on his exaltation to the right hand of God, in keeping with the exegesis of Ps. 110:1, 4, and the exposition of Jesus’ high priesthood.

Jesus was brought up from death “by the blood of the eternal covenant” (AV/KJV, RSV, NEB); that is to say, his resurrection is the demonstration that his sacrifice of himself has been accepted by God and the new covenant established on the basis of that sacrifice. The phrase “the blood of the eternal covenant” echoes 9:20, where Moses speaks of “the blood of the covenant” confirmed by God with Israel on the basis of the law. But now a better sacrifice has been offered, and the new covenant ratified thereby is superior to the older one in this respect among others, that it endures forever. (There may also be an echo here of Zech. 9:11, where God promises Zion that he will release her captives from the waterless pit “because of the blood of my covenant with you”; if so, it is but a verbal echo, but one may think of the rôle of the shepherd in the following chapters, Zech. 11:4–17; 13:7.)

The prayer, then, is that the people addressed may be spiritually equipped for every form of good work, and thus fulfil God’s will as he operates in them “both to will and to work for his good pleasure,” as Paul would put it (Phil. 2:13).

The adjective clause which concludes this prayer (“to whom be the glory for ever and ever”) is probably to be taken as an ascription of glory to God, the subject of the sentence (as is suggested by the punctuation of the RSV), rather than as referring to “Jesus Christ” as its immediate antecedent. Our author has already made it plain in v. 15 that it is through Christ that glory is to be given to God.[3]


21 The pastor calls upon the God who has made this grand provision to put it into effect by equipping “you with every good thing” in order “to do his will.” “Every good thing” is a comprehensive description of all the “good things” (9:11; 10:1) brought by Christ’s high-priestly ministry. Thus, it includes cleansing from sin (9:14), a heart ready to obey (10:15–18), continual access into God’s presence for succor in time of need (4:14–16), and the promise of final entrance into the “Unshakable Kingdom” (12:28). God uses these “good things” provided by Christ’s doing the “will” of God (10:5–10) to enable God’s people “to do the will of God.” The people who “do the will of God” are those who live as if God’s saving power in Christ is available and his promise of entrance into the heavenly City is sure. God’s equipping of his people to do his will is further defined as “doing in us that what well pleasing before him.” This participial phrase reminds us that we do not and cannot live this type of life on our own. God does not “equip” his people in such a way that they no longer need him. He is continually “doing” or “accomplishing” (NIV) this life in his people as they continually rely on him and draw near through their High Priest. This life of trust in God’s power and promises (11:5–6), of filial awe and thanksgiving (12:28), of praise and brotherly love (13:15–16; cf. 13:1–6), is the only life that is “pleasing before him.” God’s people are not swayed by the opinion of sinful society, but motivated by God’s approval. By concluding with the comprehensive name/title “Jesus Christ” the pastor encompasses the totality of the eternal, incarnate, obedient, once-having-suffered-but-now-exalted Son. It is not only “through” or “by” him but “because of” him that God accomplishes his will in his people.47 In this way the pastor concludes by reminding his hearers that perseverance is God’s work. All of his exhortations for endurance are vain unless his hearers “draw near” and receive the grace available through Christ (4:14–16; 10:19–25).

To whom is “glory” to be ascribed “forever”? The pastor is probably attributing glory to “the God of peace,” who is the subject of these verses and the source of this blessing. The phrase, however, occurs immediately after the words “Jesus Christ,” through whom God has accomplished such a “great salvation” (2:3). This ambiguity reflects the deity of the Son and his close association with God the Father. The pastor has been establishing this association from the opening words of this sermon as fundamental to all he would say. Now, then, the pastor who began by affirming that God has revealed himself through his Son (1:1–4), concludes by reaffirming that this disclosure is nothing less than the all-sufficient “great salvation” accomplished “through Jesus Christ.” From beginning to end all is God’s work in Christ. This truth has been the burden of his sermon. Glory is due “forever” to this God and to his Son, who has become the “source of eternal salvation” (5:9). With this blessing and ascription of praise the pastor brings his final appeal in chapter 13, and thus the whole sermon, to a fitting conclusion. Yet the following verses retain their importance. Even in these seemingly mundane matters so typical of a letter closing the pastor does what he can to encourage his hearers’ wholehearted compliance with the will of God.[4]


13:20–21 / The address the God of peace is a formula common in the Pauline epistles (e.g., Rom. 15:33; 16:20; 2 Cor. 13:11; Phil. 4:9; 1 Thess. 5:23; 2 Thess. 3:16). God is further addressed as the one who raised Jesus from the dead, although in the original the phrase our Lord Jesus does not occur until the end of the address (i.e., the last words of v. 20), just prior to the first petition, in a climactic position. This passing reference, in the midst of a calling upon God in prayer, surprisingly constitutes the only explicit mention of the resurrection of Jesus in the entire epistle (although of course the resurrection is presupposed in the references to the ascension that are so important to our author). The words that form the immediate object of brought back from the dead are the great Shepherd of the sheep, language that finds a nt parallel in the reference to “the Chief Shepherd” of 1 Peter 5:4 (cf. “shepherd of the sheep” in the lxx of Isaiah 63:11) and the words of Jesus in John 10:11 (cf. Mark 14:27).

Through the blood of the eternal covenant is a pregnant phrase that at once alludes to the earlier, detailed description of the sacrificial meaning of Christ’s death (chaps. 7, 9–10) and to the accompanying powerful argument about the inauguration of a new covenant (7:22–8:13). The author’s choice of the adjective eternal is deliberate. For if the old covenant gave way to a new covenant, assurance is needed that the new covenant is definitive and not itself merely a transitory reality. This is not to deny that ot language is utilized here. For our author, the new covenant established by Christ is none other than that “everlasting covenant” spoken of in Isaiah 55:3, Jeremiah 32:40, and Ezekiel 37:26. This is the “better covenant” of which Christ has become mediator (cf. 7:22; 8:6f.); and with the concept of an eternal covenant we may recall the “eternal redemption” mentioned in 9:12.

The actual petition is that this great God, who has already done so much, would now meet the needs of his people by supplying them with everything good for doing his will, and remarkably that he would at the same time work (lit., “doing”) in us what is pleasing to him. The shift to the first person pronoun us provides a sensitive identification of the author with the readers. In that the readers are called to do the will of God, and God does that will in us, the passage is reminiscent of Philippians 2:12f. It is to be noted that the agency of that activity of God in us is expressed: through Jesus Christ. This is in complete accord with the view of Christ and his work throughout the book (cf. 7:22). Most of the nt doxologies are directed to God (e.g., Rom. 11:36; 16:27; Gal. 1:5; Eph. 3:21; Phil. 4:20; 1 Tim. 1:17; Jude 25), and only a few, like the present one, are directed to Christ (e.g., possibly 1 Pet. 4:11; 2 Pet. 3:18; Rev. 1:6). This doxology serves as the climactic ending which corresponds to the exalted Christology set forth in the opening chapter of the book and, indeed, the Christology that constitutes the basis of the exposition in the intervening chapters. In light of the treatise to which the author is now putting the final touches, this doxology to Christ is both appropriate and moving. Although the Amen is formulaic, it is also the only fitting response to things so wonderful.[5]


21. equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

In the immediately preceding verses (vv. 18–19), the author requests prayer for himself. Now he offers a prayer for the people he addresses. What a moving prayer! The wealth of theology and language in this benediction that virtually concludes his epistle compares favorably with the beauty and fullness of the first few verses of the introduction with which the author begins his epistle. The author is a literary artist and a masterful theologian.

In the first part (v. 20) of the benediction, note the following points:

  • “God of peace.” The writer puts the subject God first. He describes God as “the God of peace.” That is meaningful, for he is the one who creates peace in the hearts and lives of people. Peace comes from God. Note the author does not pray, “May the peace of God,” but “May the God of peace.” God, then, is the peacemaker who is able to dispel distrust and dissent. And God grants the gift of peace to his people, so that they in turn are able to effect peace among their fellow men. Paul prays these words—“the God of peace”—rather frequently in benedictions at the conclusion of his epistles (see Rom. 15:33; 16:20; 2 Cor. 13:11; Phil. 4:9; 1 Thess. 5:23; 2 Thess. 3:16). The formula, therefore, seems to have been quite common in the early church.
  • “Brought back from the dead.” God brought Jesus back from the dead, says the author of Hebrews. The doctrine of Jesus’ resurrection is fundamental to the Christian faith, for one of the requirements for holding the office of apostle was to be a witness of the resurrection (Acts 1:22). In their preaching, testifying, and writing, the apostles proclaimed the resurrection of Jesus. Even though Paul was not a disciple of Jesus, as were the other apostles, he encountered the resurrected Jesus on the Damascus road. Therefore, in his writings Paul teaches the resurrection and at the same time affirms his apostleship (see Gal. 1:1).

The writer of the Epistle to the Hebrews mentions the resurrection of Jesus once, in the benediction. Indirectly he includes this doctrine when he introduces the topic of Christ’s exaltation at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven (1:3). He writes about the “great high priest who has gone through the heavens” (4:14) and he supposes that the readers will understand that Jesus rose from the dead and ascended to heaven. And in his summation of fundamental Christian doctrines, he lists the resurrection of the dead (6:2). Last, he alludes to the possibility of God’s raising Isaac from the dead (11:19) and the actuality of women receiving the dead who were raised to life (11:35). He cannot claim to be a witness of Jesus’ resurrection. As a second-generation believer, he heard the gospel from the immediate followers of Jesus (2:3). The author, then, briefly states that God raised Jesus from the dead and links this reference to Jesus’ office.

  • “Shepherd of the sheep.” The words “the great Shepherd of the sheep” remind us of Jesus’ teaching that he is the good shepherd who lays down his life for the sheep (John 10:11; also see Isa. 63:11). In effect, the metaphor of the shepherd who dies for his sheep is equivalent to that of the high priest who offers himself as a sacrifice for his people. Especially the adjective great is telling, for the writer of Hebrews calls Jesus the great high priest (4:14). The two concepts, then, complement each other, although as Guthrie observes, “There is a tender aspect to the shepherd figure which is not as vivid in the high priest.” Peter depicts Jesus as the Chief Shepherd (1 Peter 5:4). This great shepherd shed his blood and laid down his life for his sheep—in other words, his people—to obtain for them eternal redemption and to establish with them the eternal covenant that God had promised.
  • “Blood of the eternal covenant.” Through the prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, God announces his intention to establish an everlasting covenant with his people (Isa. 55:3; 61:8; Jer. 32:40; 50:5; Ezek. 16:60; 37:26). This covenant is everlasting because it is sealed in blood—to be precise, the blood of the Messiah. In the messianic prophecy of Zion’s king who enters Jerusalem on a donkey (Zech. 9:9; also see Matt. 21:5 and parallels), God promises his people deliverance “because of the blood of my covenant” (Zech. 9:11).

Two major themes dominate the epistle: the high-priestly work of Christ, summarized in the expression blood, and the covenant that is eternal. In this verse, once again and for the last time these themes are highlighted. God’s covenant with his people will remain forever. That covenant has been sealed with Christ’s blood which was shed once for all (9:26; 10:10).

  • “Our Lord Jesus.” These three words—four words in the original—appear last to receive all the emphasis in the verse. A literal translation of the verse is, “Now the God of peace, who brought up from the dead the great Shepherd of the sheep through the blood of the eternal covenant, even Jesus our Lord” (NASB).

In addition to using the given name Jesus, which calls to mind the earthly ministry and humanity of Christ, the author of Hebrews designates him “Lord” (2:3; 7:14). Although the title Lord occurs infrequently in Hebrews, its use in the Christian world was common, for it served as a brief confession of faith (for example, see 1 Cor. 12:3). In the benediction at the end of his epistle, the author wants to emphasize the sovereignty of Jesus. As in the introduction where he briefly points to the priestly and kingly offices of Christ (1:3), so in his benediction he combines in one sentence a reference to the priesthood and kingship of Jesus.

In the second part of the benediction (v. 21), we note these considerations:

  • “May God … equip you.” The first part of the benediction consists of a summary of what God has done in Christ; the second reveals what God is doing in Christ’s people. In this section the author utters a prayer in behalf of the readers and asks God to equip them to do his will. The verb to equip actually means to make someone complete. It connotes the act of restoring—that is, perfecting—something. Some translations have the reading “may the God of peace … make you perfect” (NEB; also consult KJV; RV; ASV). God strengthens man so that shortcomings may be overcome. He supplies us with every good thing so that we may be able to do his will.

A plaque with simple wording adorns a wall in our family room. Every member of the family can testify to the truthfulness of the wording. Here is the text:

The will of God

can never lead you

where the grace of God

cannot keep you.

  • “May [God] work in us.” In preceding verses the writer encourages the reader to live a life that is pleasing to God (11:5–6; 12:28; 13:16). A person who lives such a life is commended by God himself and is rewarded (2 Cor. 5:9–10). But man looks to God for help, direction, and wisdom. And because of the eternal covenant he has made with us through Jesus Christ, he grants us assistance. The writer of Hebrews prays that God may work in us to do that which pleases him. And Paul, writing to the church in Philippi, formulates the human and the divine in salvation. Says he, “Work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose” (Phil. 2:12–13).

Why is God willing to work in us? The author is almost repetitious in the wording of this benediction. He spells out that through Jesus Christ—note the combination of the two names (also see 10:10; 13:8)—God himself works in us and equips us to do his will. Through Jesus Christ, therefore, we are in God, and God works in us (John 17:21).

  • “To whom be glory.” Translations vary, because in the original Greek it is not clear whether glory ought to be attributed to God or to Jesus Christ. Some commentators think that because God is the subject in the benediction, the author means to say that God should receive the glory. Moreover, in greetings and benedictions glory is given to God (Rom. 11:36; 16:27; Gal. 1:5; Eph. 3:21; Phil. 4:20; 1 Tim. 1:17; Jude 25). But some of them ascribe glory to Jesus Christ (2 Tim. 4:18; 2 Peter 3:18; Rev. 1:6; 4:11). In the benediction in Hebrews, the flow of the sentence seems to indicate that Jesus Christ should receive the glory. Obviously the formula itself is the stock phrase “glory for ever and ever. Amen.” And, therefore, the writer may not have intended a clear choice. For him they are the familiar words at the conclusion of a benediction. Amen, so let it be![6]

[1] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1983). Hebrews (pp. 450–451). Chicago: Moody Press.

[2] France, R. T. (2006). Hebrews. In T. Longman III & D. E. Garland (Eds.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Hebrews–Revelation (Revised Edition) (Vol. 13, p. 193). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

[3] Bruce, F. F. (1990). The Epistle to the Hebrews (Rev. ed., pp. 387–389). Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

[4] Cockerill, G. L. (2012). The Epistle to the Hebrews (pp. 717–719). Grand Rapids, MI; Cambridge, UK: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

[5] Hagner, D. A. (2011). Hebrews (pp. 250–251). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.

[6] Kistemaker, S. J., & Hendriksen, W. (1953–2001). Exposition of Hebrews (Vol. 15, pp. 429–432). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

March 23 Streams in the Desert

Out of the spoils won in battle did they dedicate to maintain the house of the Lord.” (1 Chron. 26:27)

PHYSICAL force is stored in the bowels of the earth, in the coal mines, which came from the fiery heat that burned up great forests in ancient ages; and so spiritual force is stored in the depths of our being, through the very pain which we cannot understand.

Some day we shall find that the spoils we have won from our trials were just preparing us to become true “Great Hearts” in the Pilgrim’s Progress, and to lead our fellow pilgrims triumphantly through trial to the city of the King.

But let us never forget that the source of helping other people must be victorious suffering. The whining, murmuring pang never does anybody any good.

Paul did not carry a cemetery with him, but a chorus of victorious praise; and the harder the trial, the more he trusted and rejoiced, shouting from the very altar of sacrifice. He said, “Yea, and if I be offered upon the service and sacrifice of your faith, I joy and rejoice with you all.” Lord, help me this day to draw strength from all that comes to me!—Days of Heaven upon Earth.

“He placed me in a little cage,

Away from gardens fair;

But I must sing the sweetest songs

Because He placed me there.

Not beat my wings against the cage,

If it’s my Maker’s will,

But raise my voice to heaven’s gate

And sing the louder still!”[1]

 

[1] Cowman, L. B. (1925). Streams in the Desert (p. 92). Los Angeles, CA: The Oriental Missionary Society.

IMPORTANT DETAILS – Secretary Mnuchin Outlines Details of Recovery Bill Democrats are Blocking… — The Last Refuge

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin discusses the steps the White House is taking to mitigate economic pain and suffering being felt by businesses and workers.  The U.S. economy has essentially been shut down In an effort to deal with the spread of the Chinese coronavirus; there are worries that parts of the economy will never recover if a rescue package doesn’t quickly reach businesses and workers. [Important Conversation]

Mnuchin helped design a relief bill to protect the economy and U.S. workers, and ensure the economy is able to restart quickly. Democrats are blocking proactive the emergency bill to take advantage of the crisis with demands unrelated to economic needs.

  • Shar

via IMPORTANT DETAILS – Secretary Mnuchin Outlines Details of Recovery Bill Democrats are Blocking… — The Last Refuge

Feinstein’s Real Insider Trading Scandal Is Selling America Out To China

The far more consequential story is Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s participation in richly profiting from the U.S.-China policy for which she has lobbied for 40 years.

Source: Feinstein’s Real Insider Trading Scandal Is Selling America Out To China

Don’t Confuse Justification with Regeneration or Sanctification | Monergism

BY JOHN MURRAY, RALPH ERSKINE, WILLIAM PERKINS, JAMES USSHER, JAMES BUCHANAN

“The epistle to the Romans is concerned with this very subject, the justification of sinners. That is the grand theme of the first five chapters in particular. Romans 8:33,34 conclusively shows that the meaning is that which is contrasted with the word ‘condemn’ and that which is related to the rebuttal of a judicial charge. The meaning of the word ‘justify’ therefore, in the epistle to the Romans, and therefore in the epistle which more than any other book in Scripture unfolds the doctrine, is to declare to be righteous. Its meaning is entirely removed from the thought of making upright or holy or good or righteous.

This is what is meant when we insist that justification is forensic. It has to do with a judgment given, declared, pronounced; it is judicial or juridical or forensic. The main point of such terms is to distinguish between the kind of action which justification involves and the kind of action in regeneration. Regeneration is an act of God in us; justification is an act of God with respect to us. The distinction is like that of the distinction between the act of a surgeon and the act of a judge. The surgeon, when he removes an inward cancer, does something in us. That is not what a judge does—he gives a verdict regarding our judicial status. If we are innocent he declares accordingly.

The purity of the gospel is bound up with the recognition of this distinction. If justification is confused with regeneration or sanctification, then the door is opened for the perversion of the gospel at its center. Justification is still the article of the standing or falling church. (121)

It is by the righteousness of God that we are justified (Rom. 1:17; 3:21; 10:3; Phil. 3:9). In other words, the righteousness of our justification is a God-righteousness. Nothing more conclusively demonstrates that it is not a righteousness which is ours.

Righteousness wrought in us or wrought by us, even though it be perfect in character, is not a God righteousness. It is, after all, a human righteousness. But the commanding insistence of the Scripture is that in justification it is the righteousness of God which is revealed from faith to faith, and therefore a righteousness which is contrasted not only with human unrighteousness but with human righteousness. It is righteousness which is divine in quality. It is not, of course, the divine attribute of justice if righteousness, but, nevertheless, it is a righteousness with divine attributes or qualities and therefore a righteousness which is of divine property.

The righteousness of justification is the righteousness and obedience of Christ (Rom. 5:17, 18, 19). Here we have the final consideration which confirms all of our foregoing considerations and sets them in clear focus. This is the final reason why we are pointed away from ourselves to Christ and his accomplished work. And this is the reason why the righteousness of justification is the righteousness of God. It is the righteousness of Christ wrought by him in human nature, the righteousness of his obedience unto death, even the death of the cross. But, as such, it is the righteousness of the God-man, a righteousness which measures up to the requirements of our sinful and sin-cursed situation, a righteousness which meets all the demands of a complete and irrevocable justification, and a righteousness fulfilling all these demands because it is a righteousness of divine property and character, a righteousness undefiled and inviolable. Grace reigns through righteousness unto eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord (Rom. 5:21). ‘Blessed is the people that know the joyful sound: they shall walk, O Lord, in the light of thy countenance. In thy name shall they rejoice all the day: and in they righteousness shall they be exalted’ (Psalm 89:15,16). (127–128)

John Murray, Redemption Accomplished and Applied (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1955).

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“Ought it not be a terror to us, to cut off a lap of Christ’s garment, or clip it so short, as to think that it cannot cover us completely, without some rags of our own rotten righteousness sewed into it?

Again, it is this legal principle, that makes believers themselves think it cannot be that they are accepted as righteous, perfectly righteous in the sight of God, through the righteousness of Christ imputed; why, because they want a feeling of that righteousness IN THEMSELVES, which the legal heart is ready to make the foundation of pardon and acceptance: But as Luther said, we must not feel, but believe, that we are thus righteous; yea, it is his hidden principle of self righteousness, that will make a minister preach Christ alone for righteousness, as if he were as much for exalting Christ, as any that ever preached; and yet, before ever you know well where you are, you will find him bringing in some legal duty of qualification, in order to your being justified.”

Ralph Erskine (1685–1752), Sermon on Matthew 22:42 titled, ‘What think ye of Christ?’ in “A Collection of Sermons on Several Subjects preached by the Rev. Ralph Erskine, minister of the Gospel in Scotland and author of the Gospel Sonnets,” 78.

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“Here we see how to distinguish between justification, regeneration, and renovation. Regeneration is usually in Scripture the change of the inward man, whereby we are born anew. Renovation is the change both of the inward and outward man, that is, both of heart and life. Justification is neither, but a certain action in God applied unto us, or a certain respect or relation whereby we are acquit of our sins and accepted to life everlasting. Secondly, we must here note that the teachers of the church of Rome mistake the word justification. For by it, they understand nothing else but a physical transmutation of the quality and disposition of our hearts from evil to good. And by this mistaking, they have made a mixture or rather confusion of the law and gospel.”

William Perkins, The Works of William Perkins, 2.111. Comments on Galatians 2:16.

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To condemn the proud opinion of papists, who seek justification by their own works and righteousness inherent in themselves: whereas though being accepted, we must in thankfulness do all we can for God; yet when all is done, we must acknowledge ourselves unprofitable servants: the only matter of our joy and triumph both in life and death, must be the imputation of Christ’s righteousness. Not our persons, nor the best actions of the holiest men, dare appear in God’s presence, but in his name and merit who consecrates all, the Lord Jesus.

James Ussher, A Body of Divinity, 174.

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The Mediatorial work of Christ is thus clearly distinguished from the internal work of the Spirit. By the former, all the blessings of salvation were procured; by the latter, all these blessings are effectually applied. The work of the Spirit is not the cause, but the consequent, of our redemption; and it forms no part of the ground although it is the evidence of our Justification. That blessing, like every other which is included in salvation, depends entirely on the sacerdotal work of Christ, by which He fulfilled the conditions of the Covenant; and it is dispensed by Him in the exercise of His prophetical and regal offices, as Administrator of the Covenant. The Holy Spirit is His Agent in the exercise of these offices, and by His grace and power men are enabled and persuaded to rely on Him for salvation; but in fulfilling the conditions which were imposed on Christ as Mediator, or in accomplishing ‘the work which the Father had given Him to do,’ the Spirit had no part, except in so far as He was ‘given to Him without measure,’ and sustained His holy human soul in obeying and suffering, when ‘through the eternal Spirit He offered Himself without spot unto God.’ Apart from such concurrence, ––which might be equally affirmed of the Father Himself, –– the Holy Spirit did no part of the work by which our redemption was secured; and it is Christ’s work alone, therefore, which is the ground of our Justification. That is said of Christ and His work, in this respect, which is never said of the Spirit and His work. It is said of the Son, ––but never of the Spirit, ––that he became incarnate, and ‘took upon Him the form of a servant, and appeared in the likeness of men,’ ––that ‘He was made under the law,’ ––that He was ‘made sin for us,’ ––that ‘He was made a curse for us,’ ––that ‘He bore our sins in His own body on the tree,’ ––that ‘He died for us, the just for the unjust,’ ––that ‘He redeemed us to God by His blood,’ ––that ‘He is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth on His name,’ ––that ‘now once in the end of the world hath He appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself,’ ––and that ‘this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.’ From these testimonies it is manifest that a peculiar work is ascribed to Christ which is nowhere ascribed, in whole or in part, to the Holy Spirit; a work which was ‘finished’ on the Cross, and is different even from that which He is still carrying on in the Church by the agency of His Spirit, and the instrumentality of His Word, ––a work which had a direct reference to the expiation of human guilt, and the satisfaction of the law and justice of God, ––and a work which constitutes the only, but all–sufficient, ground of our Justification. If that work is accomplished the end of for which it was designed, no other ground of acceptance is either necessary, or possible; and the work of the Spirit Himself cannot be supposed to supersede, or even to supplement, it, without dishonor to the efficacy of that ‘precious blood,’ and the merits of that perfect righteousness, by which Christ ratified the Law and Justice of God.”

––James Buchanan, The Doctrine of Justification (Edinburg: Banner of Truth Trust, first published 1867), 395–397.

—–

“Thirdly, I add ‘of a man justified’ for two causes. First, to show that justification and sanctification are two divers gifts of God, and their difference may appear in three things: first, in that justification is out of a man, sanctification is within him; secondly, justification absolves a sinner and makes him stand righteous at the bar of God’s judgment, sanctification cannot do this; thirdly, justification brings peace of conscience, so does not sanctification, but follows that peace. Thus, the apostle has them distinct: ‘Ye are washed, ye are justified and sanctified’ (1 Cor. 6:11). Christ is made to us righteousness and sanctification (1:30). Secondly, because justification goes with sanctification. Though justification be before in nature, yet they are wrought at the same time. For when God accepts a man’s person, then he is made just, who is also sanctified.”

William Perkins (1558–1602), The Works of William Perkins: Volume 4, Reformation Heritage Books, 31.

Source: Don’t Confuse Justification with Regeneration or Sanctification

March 23 The Interpreter: Spurgeon’s Devotional Bible

March 23.—Morning. [Or June 12.]
“I have chosen the way of truth.”

THE commendable manner in which Joshua and the princes of Israel kept their promise to the Gibeonites, even though that promise had been drawn out of them by deceit, reminds us of that portrait of an upright man, which was sketched by the master hand of David, in

Psalm 15

Lord, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? who shall dwell in thy holy hill? (Who shall be owned as thy friend, admitted as thine honoured guest, and allowed to take up a perpetual lodging place with thee? What must be his character who is allowed to abide with thee, O thrice Holy God? Like fire thy nature burns against all sin, who then is he that can dwell with such a devouring flame?)

He that walketh uprightly (Here is the first line of the good man’s portrait—he must be honest, genuine, sincere, just, both towards God and man; and this habitually, for this is implied in the word, “walketh,”) and worketh righteousness, (His practice must be right. He must not only be negatively but positively good), and speaketh the truth in his heart. (His tongue must reflect his soul. He must speak truth, love truth, and live truth. God will not allow liars to tarry in his sight. Who can make us thus righteous, but the Holy Spirit?)

He that backbiteth not with his tongue nor doeth evil to his neighbour, nor taketh up a reproach against his neighbour. (He is too brave to say behind a man’s back that which he would not say to his face, and he is too good to wish or do his neighbour any ill. God will have no gossips at his board, revilers are none of his company. Readiness to take up a reproach shows a gross want of love. God is just, and therefore does not listen to slander, nor should we. If honoured by being taken into the family of God, let us do nothing inconsistent with love, for God is love.)

In whose eyes a vile person is contemned; but he honoureth them that fear the Lord. (Upright men are not swayed in their judgment by a man’s position and rank: they honour grace when they see it in poverty, but they loathe vice though half the stars and garters of nobility should decorate it.) He that sweareth to his own hurt, and changeth not. (Here is the point, which shone in the case of Joshua. Let us remember that nothing can excuse us from a promise made, unless it be positive inability to perform it or the unlawfulness of the thing promised. If there be no other men of honour in the world, let the saints be such.)

He that putteth not out his money to usury, nor taketh reward against the innocent. (The true believer does not extort from the needy. He never makes other men’s necessities an opportunity for eating up their estates, by lending them money at heavy premiums, and crushing interest. As for anything like a bribe he loathes it with his whole heart.) He that doeth these things shall never be moved.

Good men will have troubles as others have, but they shall abide the hour of trial. He whom God makes to be one of the excellent of the earth, he will surely preserve: such pieces of work are too rare and too choice to be left unguarded.

As a family, let us aim at a high standard of character. If we be not believers in Jesus as yet, may the Lord grant us faith, for that is the foundation grace; but if we are already believers, let us, by our consistent lives, prove to others the elevating and purifying power of the religion of the Most Holy God.

Lord, I would dwell with thee,

On thy most holy hill:

Oh shed thy grace abroad in me,

To mould me to thy will.

Faithful, but meekly kind:

Gentle, yet boldly true;

I would possess the perfect mind

Which in my Lord I view.

But, Lord, these graces all

Thy Spirit’s work must be;

To thee, through Jesus’ blood I call,

Create them all in me.

 

Oh! teach me at thy feet to fall,

And yield thee up myself, my all;

Before thy saints my debt to own,

And live and die to thee alone!

Thy Spirit, Lord, at large impart;

Expand, and raise, and fill my heart;

So may I hope my life shall be

Some faint return, O Lord, to thee.

March 23.—Evening. [Or June 13.]
“The Lord most high is terrible.”

Joshua 10:1–6; 8–14

NOW it came to pass, when Adoni-zedec king of Jerusalem had heard how Joshua had taken Ai, and had utterly destroyed it; as he had done to Jericho and her king; so he had done to Ai and her king; and how the inhabitants of Gibeon had made peace with Israel, and were among them; (The name Adoni-zedec signifies Lord of righteousness, and is very similar to that of Melchizedec, who ages before was the king of Salem or Jerusalem. Adoni-zedec was therefore the successor if not the descendant of Melchizedec, and bore his name; but how frequently those who succeed to the name and position of the best of men, are themselves among the worst of characters. Grace is not inheritable. A man may entail his estate but not his piety.)

That they feared greatly, because Gibeon was a great city, as one of the royal cities, and because it was greater than Ai, and all the men thereof were mighty.

Wherefore Adoni-zedec king of Jerusalem sent unto Hoham king of Hebron, and unto Piram king of Jarmuth, and unto Japhia king of Lachish, and unto Debir king of Eglon, saying,

Come up unto me, and help me, that we may smite Gibeon: for it hath made peace with Joshua and with the children of Israel.

Therefore the five kings of the Amorites, the king of Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jarmuth, the king of Lachish, the king of Eglon, gathered themselves together, and went up, they and all their hosts, and encamped before Gibeon, and made war against it.

¶ And the men of Gibeon sent unto Joshua to the camp to Gilgal, saying, Slack not thy hand from thy servants; come up to us quickly and save us, and help us: for all the kings of the Amorites that dwell in the mountains are gathered together against us. (Those who join, the Lord’s side are sure to have enemies, but they may rest assured that the Lord will come to the rescue.)

And the Lord said unto Joshua, Fear them not: for I have delivered them into thine hand; there shall not a man of them stand before thee.

Joshua therefore came unto them suddenly, and went up from Gilgal all night. (Joshua made a hasty forced march by night, thus shewing his resolve to defend all who were connected with Israel.)

10 And the Lord discomfited them before Israel, and slew them with a great slaughter.

11 And it came to pass, as they fled from before Israel, and were in the going down to Beth-horon, that the Lord cast down great stones from heaven upon them unto Azekah, and they died: they were more which died with hailstones than they whom the children of Israel slew with the sword. (Though the Lord fought for his people, he would only give them success when they put forth all their energies. When however they came up to their work zealously, he put forth his power in such a manner, that all the glory of the victory was manifestly seen to belong to him only. Where we do most, God does more; yea, he does all.)

12 ¶ Then spake Joshua to the Lord in the day when the Lord delivered up the Amorites before the children of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel, Sun, stand thou still upon Gibeon; and thou, Moon, in the valley of Ajalon.

13 And the sun stood still, and the moon stayed, until the people had avenged themselves upon their enemies. Is not this written in the book of Jasher? So the sun stood still in the midst of heaven, and hasted not to go down about a whole day. (The book of Jasher is lost, but the book of God is not, nor a single line of it. See how inspiration embalms all things which are recorded in it. We should never have heard the name of this book if it had not been preserved like a fly in the amber of Scripture.)

14 And there was no day like that before it or after it, that the Lord hearkened unto the voice of a man: for the Lord fought for Israel.

To please sceptical minds, scores of explanations of this wonderful occurrence have been laboriously elaborated, but there is no need for them and no use in them. The Almighty God can as easily stop the sun and moon as a watchmaker can alter a watch; he did do so, and how he did it is no question for us: we may rest assured he prolonged the daylight by the very wisest means. It is not ours to try and soften down miracles, but to glorify God in them. At the appearing of our greater Joshua, the sun and moon shall be confounded while he shall be revealed in flaming fire, taking vengeance on his enemies.[1]

 

[1] Spurgeon, C. H. (1964). The Interpreter: Spurgeon’s Devotional Bible (pp. 167–168). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House.

SHOCK: Dem Stock Coronavirus Package With Green New Deal Handouts, Post Office Bailout, Union Cash | The Daily Wire

The Democrats, led by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), pulled an eleventh hour political move Sunday night, voting to pull a massive coronavirus recovery package after spending days negotiating with Republicans and top administration officials, in order to produce their own hastily constructed stimulus bill packed with handouts to Democratic constituencies.

The move angered Americans who are desperate to find some solace in social and economic quarantine and incensed Senate Republicans who spent days at the bargaining table with prominent Democrats, like Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), under the impression they were hammering out a mutually acceptable, bipartisan stimulus package that could get money to individual Americans quickly while preserving some funds for businesses that could suffer long-term financial harm.

Pelosi, who had been on recess, sheltering in her home district, returned to Washington, D.C., Sunday night and upended the process, ordering Senate Democrats to restrict voting, kill the bill, and make way for a second stimulus package, which will hit the House floor at 2pm EST Monday.

Early reports on the Democrats’ bill show a piece of legislation packed with handouts, bailouts, and cash offerings to the Democrats’ top constituencies, as well as provisions demanding enforcement of the Green New Deal, easing voting restrictions, and strengthening union allies.

Townhall’s Guy Benson reported Monday that the bill contains “unprecedented collective bargaining powers for unions,” “increased fuel emissions standards for airlines,” and “expansion of wind and solar tax credits” — all items totally unrelated to the bill’s purpose.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell appeared to confirm those additions in a fiery floor speech Monday, accusing Democrats of bringing the country to an economic standstill.

Journalist Rachel Bovard managed to get an early copy of the 1,400-page Pelosi bill, and found further evidence of a lack of seriousness on the part of Democratic legislators.

According to Brovard, the bill contains provisions bailing out the post office:

The bill also mandates “risk limiting audits” of elections, as well as same-day voter registration — a longtime Democrat wishlist item that’s largely been considered a major hurdle to any voter rights legislation, given the possibility of abuse.

Democrats, Monday, complained that the bipartisan Senate relief bill contains a “slush fund” of corporate bailout money that will be doled out six months from the first bill. Senate Republicans were clear Monday that the “slush fund” — in actuality, a zero-interest loan program to compensate businesses harmed by government lockdown — has clear restrictions on the $500 billion set aside to assist firms that have not recovered from the coronavirus lockdown within six months, including limits on funding corporate bonuses and stock buybacks.

“Direct Lending Limitations: executive total compensation may not exceed $425,000; prohibition of stock buybacks during the duration of the loan; borrowers must maintain existing payroll as of March 13,” per the bill itself.

The Democrats’ bill does address corporations, but not by limiting salaries and buybacks — by demanding that corporations adhere to a non-sensical and irrelevant “diversity quota,” completely unnecessary to the task at hand.

Other provisions of the Democrats bill reportedly include a student loan bailout (up to $30,000 per borrower), and a limit on evictions, foreclosures, and deportations. Other, unconfirmed, reports note that Pelosi plans to include all provisions excised from earlier attempts at politicizing the stimulus bill, including a handout to abortion providers unrestricted by the Hyde Amendment, which prevents taxpayer dollars from going to directly fund abortion services.

Pelosi is expected to release the bill at 2 p.m.

Source: SHOCK: Dem Stock Coronavirus Package With Green New Deal Handouts, Post Office Bailout, Union Cash

Democrats Blocking Emergency Relief Bill to Get More Windmills and Emission Standards… — The Last Refuge

 

Democrats are blocking Senate Bill S.3548, The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, or the CARES Act.   House Speaker Pelosi is instructing Senator Schumer not to support any relief bill unless it includes: cancellation of college student debt, union protections, tax subsidies for windmills/solar, and new airline emission standards.

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via Democrats Blocking Emergency Relief Bill to Get More Windmills and Emission Standards… — The Last Refuge

Democratic Partisan Buffoonery Delays Senate Vote On Coronavirus Stimulus Bill — The Federalist

Sen. Kennedy said the American people are thinking, “that this country was founded by geniuses, but is being run by a bunch of idiots.”

On the Senate floor, Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, asked for unanimous consent that Senators be allowed to discuss the proposed $1.8 trillion coronavirus stimulus bill. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer objected, which led the typically quiet Maine Senator to blast Schumer and Democrats for playing partisan games, inevitably delaying a necessary stimulus bill as the economy tanks.

“I asked unanimous consent that proceedings under the quorum be dispensed with,” Collins said.

“I object,” Schumer said.

Collins and Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., called Schumer’s actions disgraceful.

“We don’t have another day. We don’t have another hour. We don’t have another minute to delay acting,” Collins said.

Senator Collins: “I ask unanimous consent that proceedings under the quorum be dispensed with.”

Senator Schumer: “I object.”@senatemajldr: “Oh, come on.”

Senator Collins: “This is unbelievable.”

Democrats continue to play their political games…
pic.twitter.com/iqB3m4QcMG

— Students For Trump (@TrumpStudents) March 23, 2020

On Sunday night, Democrats attempted to kill the proposed stimulus bill in a 47-47 vote. Republicans are struggling as five Republican senators remain in quarantine, including Sen. Rand Paul who tested positive for coronavirus on Monday.

Democrats argue that President Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell are using the stimulus funds to put corporations before individuals. Yet, they continue to delay action in the Senate.

Republicans argue that Democrats are using coronavirus legislation to push broader liberal legislation. For example, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s proposed bill prioritizes corporate board diversity, lowering greenhouse gas emissions of flights, and requiring state’s implement same-day voter registration.

Because if I’m an American who just got furloughed, my biggest priorities are corporate board diversity, bailing out the post office, the greenhouse gas emissions of flights I can no longer afford to book, and requiring same-day voter registration.

These are all in Pelosi’s bill pic.twitter.com/YULqp5rTLf

— Greg Price (@greg_price11) March 23, 2020

After Collins’s speech, Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., called for the Senate to enact remote voting.

“We should not be physically on this floor at this moment. We know better,” Durbin said. “Let’s think of this in human terms.”

Across the aisle, @DickDurbin tells everyone to “take a deep breath” & calls for remote voting. Five senators in quarantine; one, Rand Paul is infected.

“We should not be physically on this floor at this moment. We know better….Lets think of this in human terms”

— Sheryl Gay Stolberg (@SherylNYT) March 23, 2020

There was continued in-fighting on the Senate floor between Democrats and Republicans over the timeline of the proposed bill in the House of Representatives. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, said McConnell made the Senate leave town on Thursday night after the House passed a stimulus bill. Brown placed the blame on McConnell for delay on the stimulus bill.

Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., accurately pointed out the House bill had yet to be written.

Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., pointed out the ridiculousness of such partisan bickering during a pandemic.

“You know what the American people are thinking right now Mr. President? They’re thinking that this country was founded by geniuses, but is being run by a bunch of idiots,” Kennedy said.

You can always count on Sen. Kennedy for the 🔥pic.twitter.com/0LAxEmW7Zv

— Henry Rodgers (@henryrodgersdc) March 23, 2020

Chrissy Clark is social media manager and staff writer at The Federalist. Follow her on social media @chrissyclark_ or contact her at chrissy@thefederalist.com.

via Democratic Partisan Buffoonery Delays Senate Vote On Coronavirus Stimulus Bill — The Federalist