“He that takes truth for his guide, and duty for his end, may safely trust to God’s providence to lead him aright.” – Blaise Pascal. "There is but one straight course, and that is to seek truth and pursue it steadily" – George Washington letter to Edmund Randolph — 1795. We live in a “post-truth” world. According to the dictionary, “post-truth” means, “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.” Simply put, we now live in a culture that seems to value experience and emotion more than truth. Truth will never go away no matter how hard one might wish. Going beyond the MSM idealogical opinion/bias and their low information tabloid reality show news with a distractional superficial focus on entertainment, sensationalism, emotionalism and activist reporting – this blogs goal is to, in some small way, put a plug in the broken dam of truth and save as many as possible from the consequences—temporal and eternal. "The further a society drifts from truth, the more it will hate those who speak it." – George Orwell “There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what isn’t true; the other is to refuse to believe what is true.” ― Soren Kierkegaard
Exceeding great and precious promises.—2 Peter 1:4.
LET men feed for a month on the promises of God and they will not be talking their “leanness.” It is not leanness, it is laziness. There is an abundant supply for us if we will only rouse ourselves to take it.
He shall enter into peace; they shall rest in their beds, each walking in his uprightness.—Isaiah 57:2.
Here, my soul, is a sweet portion for thee to lie down with this night, and every night, until the night of death arrives, and thou droppest asleep in the arms of Jesus, to awake no more, till the everlasting morn arise that shall have no night. This is the privilege of the faithful, who enter into the peace of Jesus, and these are the beds they repose in; yea, each of them, for it is the personal enjoyment of each, and of all, to make Jesus their rest. “This is the rest (saith the Holy Ghost, by this same prophet, chap, 27:12) wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest, and this is the refreshing.” And dost thou know it, my soul, that Jesus is all this for thee to rest upon, for peace here, and glory to all eternity? Behold him in his person, behold him in the fulness of his grace, his righteousness, his blood, and the unceasing efficacy of his atonement and salvation! Surely thou hast both known him and rested upon him, under all these endearing views, and therefore cannot now need to inquire, what is the rest of the weary, and the sure dwelling-place of the believer? Look at each sweet character and grace of Jesus, and mark how suited they all are for his people, when buffeted by Satan, or fatigued in the world, or tired with the many burdens and interruptions to their peace, which arise from bodily infirmities; look at each, and see what a bosom Jesus opens to receive, and lull to sleep in his arms every lamb of his fold. If the tempter should hiss from the “lion’s den, and from the mountain of the leopards,” how quieting is that voice which speaketh pardon and peace, in the blood of the cross! And what strength does faith afford in Jesus’s righteousness, “to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked!” If the world frown, if family cares and sorrows arise, or if any of those various afflictions which necessarily arise out of a fallen state, abound to make this state wearisome, still the promise holds good: “He shall enter into peace; they shall rest in their beds:” Jesus will here again lull them to sleep with his sweet refreshments. “In the world ye shall have tribulation: but in me ye shall have peace.” And if, my soul, thine own manifold frailties, which daily and hourly harass thee, from that body of sin and death thou carriest about with thee, if these induce sorrow, as well they may, oh! how blessed is it to look up to Jesus under all, and view that blood which speaketh for thee, more than all thy errors plead against thee! Here, thou dearest Lord, wilt thou cause me to find constant support and consolation in thee; and amidst all, I shall hear thy lovely voice, saying, “Come unto me all ye that are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Lie down, then, my soul, this night, and every night, until thou takest thy last night in the quiet bosom of the grave, upon the covenant promises of thy God, in the sure and safe resting-place of thy Jesus, and his finished salvation. And as the waters of the flood allowed no resting-place for the dove, neither could she find place for the sole of her foot, until she returned to Noah in the ark, so neither will the tribulated waters of sin, and sorrow, and temptation, suffer thee to enjoy rest in any thing short of Jesus, which the ark of Noah signified. “Return, then, to thy rest, O my soul,” return to thy Jesus, thy Noah, thine ark, “for the Lord hath dealt bountifully with thee!”
21:25On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. In ancient times, city gates were open during the day to permit travel and trade but closed at night for protection from enemies. In the new creation there will be no night, no darkness, no evil (cf. 22:5; John 9:4; 11:10; 13:30). The light of day will endure forever. Consequently, the gates of the city will never close (cf. Isa. 60:11), illustrating how God’s people will experience perfect protection and total freedom from the fear of their enemies. The image of continuously open gates also underscores that among the redeemed, no one is closed out. The multicultural people of God will have full and unlimited access to God’s glorious presence.
24. And the nations will walk through its light, and the kings of the earth bring their glory into it. 25. And its gates are never closed during the day, for there is no night there. 26. And they will bring the glory and honor of the nations into it.
“And the nations will walk through its light, and the kings of the earth bring their glory into it.” John continues to rely on Isaiah 60 and selects verses 3 and 5, “Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.… To you the riches of the nations will come.” Throughout the Apocalypse, the term the nations normally alludes to the Gentiles, who because of their opposition to God deserve his wrath. In three occurrences (vv. 24, 26; 22:2) the term refers to the redeemed nations in the new Jerusalem. In light of the passage from Isaiah’s prophecy, John gives a new meaning to the concepts nations and kings, removing the idea of enmity against God and his people (e.g., 18:3, 9, 23; 19:19). He notes that these nations and kings are part of God’s family. They joyfully bring their sacrificial gift of praise, “the fruit of lips that confess his name” (Heb. 13:15).
The inhabitants of the new Jerusalem originate from every tribe, language, people, and nation; they were purchased with the blood of the Lamb (5:9). They are part of the great multitude that no one could number (7:9). The kings of the earth are among those who have the privilege of ruling with Christ because they did not receive the mark on their foreheads or their hands (20:4, 6). Certainly, these nations and kings are citizens in God’s kingdom and do not live outside the city, “for outside the city of God there is nothing—except the lake of fire.”
The nations walk through the divine light that illumines the holy city, and the kings of the earth glorify God. They live in the light and as a result offer glory and honor to God (v. 26).
These inhabitants seek not their own glory, but in continual worship they render in to God.
“And its gates are not closed during the day, for there is no night there.” John continues to borrow from Isaiah’s prophecy:
Your gates will always stand open,
And its gates are never closed during the day,
they will never be shut, day or night,
for there is no night there.
so that men may bring you
And they will bring the glory
the wealth of the nations
and honor of the nations into it.
In ancient times, the city gates were shut at nightfall for the security and safety of the citizens. But here John changes the wording of Isaiah and says, “And its gates are never closed during the day,” and then adds, “for there is no night there.” He implies that because sun and moon have ceased to function, the holy city is in eternal daylight and enjoys the light of God and the Lamb. In fact, the Greek uses the emphatic negative: “its gates are never closed.”
The saints in the holy city never need rest, and there is no darkness anymore within its walls. Angels who partake of eternity worship God day and night without resting (4:8); by contrast, worshipers of the beast in hell have no rest day and night (14:11). John uses the cosmic terms of day and night, but he points out that in eternity the saints bask in eternal light and implies that they never experience the eternal darkness of those who die a second death.
Everlasting openness of the city gates signifies not that some undesirable beings, human or angelic, can enter it. On the contrary, the open doors suggest that the residents are absolutely safe from all the evil forces that have been consigned to the lake of burning fire.
“And they will bring the glory and honor of the nations into it.” The subject, here indicated as they, goes back to verse 24, “The nations … and the kings of the earth.” These nations and kings collectively have bent their knees in worship, acknowledging Jesus as Lord of lords and King of kings. They are the kings of Tarshish, of distant lands, of Sheba and Seba. They will bring their tribute by glorifying and honoring the Lord; and they bow down before him and serve him (Ps. 72:10–11).
When John mentions city, nations, kings, gates, day, night, glory, and honor, he uses figurative language. His symbolism implies that the new Jerusalem encompasses the new heaven and the new earth. God and the Lamb dwell forever with the saints in a renewed creation of heaven and earth, called the holy city.
21:24–26. These verses are challenging to interpret. On the most literal level, they suggest that in the eternal state two companies of people will exist side-by-side, the redeemed, who live in the Lamb’s city, and the unregenerate nations, who live outside the city but under its influence. This is clearly unacceptable, for Revelation 20 had concluded with the wicked cast into the lake of fire forever. Other theologians have interpreted this to mean that all human beings, or at least almost everyone, will ultimately be in heavenly bliss, a kind of universalism. Again, this is impossible; for if Revelation teaches anything, it teaches that many wicked people will never repent and must stand under the eternal wrath of God.
A third option is that the “nations” and their “kings” are Gentiles and their leaders who have been redeemed, while the city dwellers are Israelite. This view has the advantage of emphasizing the great variety of people that will be in heaven (5:9). However, it makes a distinction nowhere else made in the New Testament or Revelation, and it ignores the essential notion that the heavenly city is the permanent dwelling for all who have overcome (vv. 6–7).
What then is left? John’s vision here is best understood as an idealized presentation of the New Jerusalem as the absolute counterpart to Babylon the Great. Revelation contains if anything concrete images. John’s readers could easily understand the picture of a great capital city with influence vastly beyond its borders. If an earthly city’s splendor could be thought of in such a perspective, then the heavenly city’s could be similarly portrayed. Further, there is something wonderful about showing how the bride city outstrips the harlot city. Had Babylon the Great showed her magnificence by having the kings and nations of the earth bring her their commerce? One need look no farther back than Revelation 18 to see this described in detail. If Babylon had seduced nations and kings by her evil spell, New Jerusalem will have the nations to walk by its light. Instead of entering alliance with evil, the kings are portrayed as bringing their splendor into it. This is obviously symbolic, for no rulers could add anything to a city such as John has described.
This is the city of Solomon transposed to a higher key (see the Introduction at the beginning of this chapter). Unlike Solomon’s Jerusalem, the city will be perfectly secure. Thus, on no day will its gates ever be shut. Even the greatest of earthly cities had closed their gates at nightfall. Evil often happens under cover of darkness; but because there will be no night there in the New Jerusalem, this is completely unnecessary.
The glory and honor of the nations suggests all that is lofty and noble of mankind’s achievement. Although Dame Civilization corrupted the nations, some human accomplishment has been a worthy reflection of the Creator. All the arts and sciences, all learning and wisdom, may be brought into the service of God. Verse 26 suggests that endlessly in heaven the saints will have opportunity to bring praise to God by offering up to him the best of our accomplishments.
25–26 Life in the age to come will certainly involve continuing activities and relationships that will contribute to the glory of the Holy City throughout eternity. Instead of the nations bringing their precious possessions to Babylon, the harlot city, the redeemed nations will bring these offerings to the throne of God (cf. Isa 60:3–7). So certain is its perpetual light and security that the gates will never be shut for fear of evil by night (cf. Isa 60:11). This imagery should not, however, be allegorized as indicating some sort of perpetual invitation to salvation.
25–26 The gates of the New Jerusalem stand open because with the demise of evil security measures are no longer necessary. John’s parenthetical remark about the absence of night explains why only day is mentioned in the preceding clause. Day extends indefinitely without interruption because darkness never comes. Thus there is no need of closing gates. One is reminded of the Isaianic declaration concerning the restored Jerusalem, “Your gates will always stand open” (Isa 60:11). Through these open gates the kings of the earth bring the glory and honor of the nations. The reference is to the choicest of earthly treasures. Once again we are to think of the imagery, not in a literal sense, but in its symbolic significance.
24–27. In the close of this Chapter, in these verses, we have the vast distinction drawn, between the saved and the lost. The nations of them saved, meaning Christ’s Church, gathered out of all nations, are here said to walk in the light of the Lord; meaning, that this is their glory; and the kings of the earth, that is, Christ’s redeemed ones, redeemed from the earth, from among men, and made Kings and Priests to God, and the Father, (Rev. 1:6.) bring all their glory of redemption into it. No gates are shut. No prevention of access to God, in Christ, and by Christ, night, or day. An everlasting union, and communion, is now enjoyed by the saints; and they, even the saints of God, bring all the revenue of glory, to God, and the Lamb, into it.
But, while the redeemed have thus an entrance abundantly administered unto them, into God’s everlasting kingdom; here is a final clause, which for ever shuts out all that are not written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. The defiled, the worker of abomination, and the lover and maker of a lie. And who are the defiled, but the unregenerate, and unwashed, and unrenewed. They who never, felt the Spirit’s work upon the heart, in quickening them from the death of sin. They who work an abomination, by looking for acceptance, in whole, or in part, in their own righteousness, instead of wholly looking for redemption in Christ’s blood. And they who feed upon ashes, and not the bread of life, whose deceived heart hath turned them aside, so that they cannot deliver their souls, and say, is there not a lie in my right hand. Isaiah 44:20.
Ver. 25.—And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there. The Revised Version correctly places the last clause in parentheses. The meaning is: The gates shall never be shut, either by day or night; but it is superfluous to say, “by night,” for there is no night there. Some commentators think the open gates are a sign of perfect security; others, that they are open to admit the nations, as described in the following verse. Both ideas may well be understood.
25. Earthly cities shut their gates when darkness comes. Not this city. Indeed darkness cannot come to it for there is perpetual light within it. John makes two statements: first, the gates are not shut by day, then, there will be no night there. Thus there is no possibility of the city’s being shut.
Ver. 25. No night there.—
The everlasting day:—
No natural night there. The large portion of our existence that sleep now consumes will be added to our peaceful, our blissful occupations.
No night of sin there.
III. No night of suffering there.
No night of ignorance there.
No night of infirmities there.
No night of mysterious providences there.
VII. No night of hindered prayers there.
VIII. No night of disappointed expectations there.
No night of separation there.
No night of temptation there. (T. Nunns, M.A.)
No night there:—In looking at the emblems employed in the Word of God, you cannot fail to be impressed with their simplicity as well as their beauty. Night is one of these. 1. It is the season of repose. 2. It is the time of evil—the season chosen for the performance of deeds of darkness and of sin. 3. And it is the time of fear. Yet notwithstanding all this I praise God for the night. 4. Night is suggestive of sorrow. This is the inevitable lot of the good on earth. But “there shall be no night” of sorrow “there!” No tears shall be shed, no hopes shall be frustrated, no disappointments felt, no friends removed, no graves opened. Night, as we have seen, is associated with deeds of darkness. And hence, when it is affirmed of the heavenly state that “there shall be no night there,” we are reminded of the perfect purity of our eternal home. Further, night is associated with weariness and fatigue. To affirm, therefore, of the heavenly world that there shall be no night there, is to declare that weariness and fatigue shall be unknown. One of the most difficult questions is that of the exact nature of the glorified body the redeemed will possess. And then, night is associated with obscurity. Its shades conceal much from our vision, and hence it has ever been regarded as an appropriate emblem of mental obscurity. Mystery surrounds us on every hand. Questions are continually arising to which we can return no complete answer. Now it is night with us. The unclouded day is yonder. (S. D. Hillman, B.A.)
No night there:—
The absence of night in the glorified Church implies that there will be no sin there.
The absence of night implies there shall be no ignorance there.
III. The absence of night implies there shall be no weariness there. Here God’s people are wearied with labours.
The absence of night implies that there shall be no change there.
The absence of night implies that there shall be no death there. (B. W. Bucke, M.A.)
The happiness of heaven:—
The import of the representation by which this state is here distinguished. 1. Among the mansions of the blessed, there shall be no fatigue, no tendency to lassitude, and no reason for repose. 2. There shall be no hostile intrusion there; there is no reason for precaution. 3. There is no impurity and no sin. 4. But night is a season of privation; and when we are told of heaven as a state where no privation shall be, we are well reminded that no night shall be there. Do you speak of privation of society? In heaven you will have delightful and hallowed fellowship. Do you speak of privation of knowledge? In heaven, illumination will be poured upon our faculties to the utmost extent which those faculties can, by possibility, bear. Do you speak of privation of happiness? In heaven, perturbation and pain, and fear, and distress, will be removed for ever. 5. “No more death”—“no more death” to our persons: “for this corruptible shall put on incorruption.” “No more death” to our happiness; “no more death” to our attainments; “no more death” to our joy. All unchangeable, and all imperishable, and all for ever!
The conclusions which our contemplations of the heavenly state under this representation ought forcibly to impress upon our minds. 1. Our contemplations ought to induce preparation. 2. Our contemplations of the heavenly state ought to induce gratitude. You were the slave led captive by the devil at his will, and now have been brought into the glorious liberty of the sons of God—a liberty which is to be consummated in the skies. 3. These contemplations of the heavenly state should induce desire. And truly there is nothing—if we are preparing for such scenes as those which have now been laid before you—there is nothing which should keep your desires from heaven. (J. Parsons.)
Heaven without night:—1. We are wont to associate with night the idea of weariness. Sweet to the myriad toilers in the world’s vast workshop is the coming of the still evening hour, when the tasks of day are laid aside, and tired limbs and overwrought brains draw refreshment from slumber. So benign is this provision that Scripture has included it among the special acts of Divine goodness, in the beautiful saying, “He giveth His beloved sleep.” Now, as this arrangement is not found in heaven, the inference is obvious that the denizens of that bright realm do not require its operation, and are so constituted as to be inaccessible to fatigue from any intensity or duration of employment. 2. Night is the symbol of ignorance. How often do the Sacred Writers represent the intellectual and moral blindness of men under the figure of darkness! Thus Job, describing the errors and follies of the devotees of human wisdom, says, “They meet with darkness in the day time, and grope at noonday as in the night.” And the fearful ignorance of God and of truth, which overspread the world at the period of the Redeemer’s advent, is pourtrayed by the graphic declaration, “Darkness covered the earth, and gross darkness the people.” In this emblematic sense, a deep and cloudy night stretches over the sphere which we now inhabit. How imperfect are our faculties! How narrow the limits of our knowledge! How obscure and uncertain our researches! What barriers of gloom and mystery meet us on whatever side we attempt to push our investigations! But in heaven there will be no intellectual night. All the errors that now shade and darken our minds—all the obstacles which here impede and limit our acquisitions—shall there be for ever removed. The faculties of the soul which, amid the fogs and illusions of sense, are so restricted in their range, and so distorted in their vision, will, in that radiant world, expand into seraphic strength, and under the beams of eternal day receive a new impulse, and a right direction. The veil also, which now hangs over so many departments of Truth, will then be lifted, and we shall enter her inmost temple, and worship at her most secret shrine. 3. Night is the symbol of sin. The time which God has ordained for rest, man has appropriated to crime. All classes of the depraved and lawless look upon night as their chosen patron and protector. “The way of the wicked is as darkness.” “Men love darkness rather than light, because their deeds are evil.” When, therefore, we read of heaven as being without night, the expression evidently implies that into those holy realms no impurity can ever be admitted. “There shall in no case enter into it anything that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie, but they that are written in the Lamb’s book of life.” 4. Night is the symbol of danger. The hours in which darkness broods over the earth are peculiar for their insecurity. It is then that the robber, the housebreaker, the incendiary, and the whole tribe of depredators on property and life, steal from their lurking places, and roam abroad on their work of mischief. And then it is that perils easily avoided by day deepen and multiply their terrors. The exclusion of night from heaven may, therefore, be interpreted as a pledge that, in that secure asylum, no adversary shall assail us, and no possibility of evil ever menace our peace. The seductions of the world, and the treachery of our own hearts, will not follow us there, nor can Satan cross “the great gulf fixed” between hell and heaven to vex us with his assaults. 5. Night is the symbol of want. Sleep is the sister of death. During its reign over us, we retire within ourselves; the senses close their portals, and the soul is shut in from all its wonted delights. Communion with man and with Nature has ceased. Perception is suspended. Reason is in abeyance. Gone are consciousness, memory, hope. And even should slumber be interrupted, what a dreary blank does the eye behold! Hidden is the rich landscape—stream, and forest, and mountain—all the grand things and the lovely on which the daylight looks. Above us may glimmer the watching stars and the silvery moon, but they only awaken regret for the nobler luminary departed. So is it that night typifies want; and the fact that heaven knows no night is a most expressive sign that it also knows no privation. Want, in one or another of its forms, is inseparable from our earthly condition. Pilgrims in the desert, we must expect to sigh in vain for much that is essential to perfect felicity. But when we reach the land of Divine fulness above, every need will be supplied. Everything around us, every scene, every object, every employment, will be adapted to exclude disquietude, and to minister delight. Every faculty, every passion, will be absorbed in adoration, and overflowing with ecstasy. And He that sitteth on the throne will bring out His treasures to augment our bliss, showering down upon our spirits all the raptures which Almighty Goodness can bestow. 6. Night is the symbol of death. There are few analogies in the whole range of sacred imagery more suited to represent death than the season of night. And thus we find it very frequently employed by the inspired writers. The Psalmist, in speaking of the removal of his friends by death, says, “Mine acquaintance hast Thou put into darkness.” Job calls death “the day of darkness,” and the grave “the bed of darkness,” “a land of darkness, as darkness itself; and of the shadow of death, without any order, and where the light is as darkness.” Our Divine Teacher has also given us a very striking description of death under the figure of night. “I must work the works of Him that sent Me while it is day; the night cometh in which no man can work.” To beings situated as we are, it is hardly possible to form an idea of a state of existence in which death is unknown. Yet this is true of heaven. “There shall be no more death.” Oh, what a soul-ravishing announcement is this! No more death! Then hope has dawned on the midnight of the tomb; the King of Terrors is despoiled of his power, and the all-conqueror is himself conquered! No more death to our persons—no more death to our attainments—no more death to our usefulness—no more death to our joys! All are changeless and perfect. God is our portion, holiness our vesture, happiness our allotment, eternity our home. Oh, what a boon is Immortality when it thus stamps its own endless duration on all that awaits us in “the Better Land!” (Dr. Ide.)
The vision of the truth:—
Now here is seen the value of Christian principle. The Man of Sorrows is on His march for the morning; for the principles of the passion place you on the track of the dawn.
These principles are powers of guidance in three important—nay, momentous—questions of conduct. 1. What is seriously necessary for any soul in order, in its mortal journey, to be useful and happy? The answer is—Not to live at random, but to have an object in life. 2. What is to be my view of the world? What is the attitude of the soul of the Christian towards the mass of mankind? The optimist views it all through the medium of a rose-coloured dream. All is going onward as merry as a marriage-bell. The only objection is—theories do not alter human suffering, and to this theory facts do not square. It is impossible here reasonably to deny the darkness. It is true it is blessed to remember “there shall be no night there.” 3. There is here a revelation of the future. The eternal city is in fact the working out of the twofold Divine benediction. It is the completion and beatified result of purified characters. “Blessed are the undefiled in the way,” and “Blessed is he whose unrighteousness is forgiven and whose sin is covered.” This is the glorious end of innocence and penitence. The breaking of the dawn! It is coming, there is a land of brightness after darkness; amid all sorrow hope will yet have its triumph: “there shall be no night there”!
III. Night here, however. Why? From the absence of the sun: from the accumulation of the clouds. 1. There is sin. Wills opposed to the will of changeless goodness: wills almost fixed in evil—eyes from which all vision of brightness seems gone: hearts which seem to keep no trace of pity. Ah me!—a ruined soul, or a soul on the road to ruin, how terrible! To be growing worse instead of better: to be losing foothold, not climbing boldly on. Soul of a sinner! Pause, think twice. It is hard to imagine deliverance: hard to believe at times that God’s grace, that fresh breezes from the heavenly courts, can disperse such clouds, but it is true. Look up, march eastward; repent, cry for help, take heart; though the path be rough it is the path of the Holy Passion. The city of the saints is the land of the sunlight. “There shall be no night there.” 2. There is sorrow. Ah! who has ever read, who can ever read, the mystery of tears? But there it is. There is a home where no sorrow enters—there dwelleth no evil, “there is no night there.” 3. There is death. However it be lightened by the faith of a Christian, what thinking mind can fail to acknowledge there is the solemnity of night about the grave? Well, the dawn of eternity shall break, and death itself shall die.
There are many difficulties, many sorrows; yet are there not some alleviations? Life is never altogether darkness when it is illuminated by hope. Look upward, take courage, never allow the cowardice of permanent despondency, or the blasphemy of final despair. Trust God. Surely even here are streaks in the darkness. There are quiet hours of rest and blessing; such a converse with a dear friend; such a happy day of pleasure; such evidence that the sun is there, though veiled by the vapour; such approaches of the daylight; such streaks of the dawn. To repent, heartily, manfully, thoroughly, when you have sinned; to receive trial and sorrow with loving submission, and willingly to taste the sweet “uses of adversity”; to love goodness, truth, duty, God in Christ, and by the power, the moral power of love, to help and make men better—this, this, surely, whatever happens, is to plant your feet firmly on the track of the dawn.
What about the future? Well, John assures us that there lies before us something beyond all words happy, which he can only convey to us by speaking of it as “a city.” Remember that in that city you will find the result of your toil and the end of your journey. (Canon Knox Little.)
21:25 “In the daytime (for there will be no night there) its gates will never be closed” This is an allusion to Isa. 60:11 or Zech. 14:6–7. The concept of darkness in the Bible is often a metaphor for evil (cf. Matt. 6:23; 8:12; 22:13; 25:30). Light and dark were especially important symbolic theological contrasts for John (cf. John 1:4–5, 7–9; 3:19–21; 8:12; 11:9–10; 12:35–36, 46; 1 John 1:5–7; 2:8–11).
 Duvall, J. S. (2014). Revelation. (M. L. Strauss & J. H. Walton, Eds.) (p. 294). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.
BELIEVER! What a glorious assurance! This way of thine—this, it may be, a crooked, mysterious, tangled way—this way of trial and tears. “He knoweth it.” The furnace seven times heated—He lighted it. There is an Almighty Guide knowing and directing our footsteps, whether it be to the bitter Marah pool, or to the joy and refreshment of Elim.
That way, dark to the Egyptians, has its pillar of cloud and fire for His own Israel. The furnace is hot; but not only can we trust the hand that kindles it, but we have the assurance that the fires are lighted not to consume, but to refine; and that when the refining process is completed (no sooner—no later) He brings His people forth as gold.
When they think Him least near, He is often nearest. “When my spirit was overwhelmed, then thou knewest my path.”
Do we know of One brighter than the brightest radiance of the visible sun, visiting our chamber with the first waking beam of the morning; an eye of infinite tenderness and compassion following us throughout the day, knowing the way that we take?
The world, in its cold vocabulary in the hour of adversity, speaks of “Providence”—“the will of Providence”—“the strokes of Providence.” Providence! what is that?
Why dethrone a living, directing God from the sovereignty of His own earth? Why substitute an inanimate, death-like abstraction, in place of an acting, controlling, personal Jehovah?
How it would take the sting from many a goading trial, to see what Job saw (in his hour of aggravated woe, when every earthly hope lay prostrate at his feet)—no hand but the Divine. He saw that hand behind the gleaming swords of the Sabeans—he saw it behind the lightning flash—he saw it giving wings to the careening tempest—he saw it in the awful silence of his rifled home.
“The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord!”
Thus seeing God in everything, his faith reached its climax when this once powerful prince of the desert, seated on his bed of ashes, could say, “Though he slay me, yet will I trust him.”
April 22.—Morning. [Or August 11.]
“He knoweth the way that I take.”
1 Samuel 9:1–6; 14–21; 26, 27
NOW there was a man of Benjamin, whose name was Kish, a Benjamite, a mighty man of power.
2 And he had a son, whose name was Saul, a choice young man, and a goodly: (It would have been better had he been godly as well:) and there was not among the children of Israel a goodlier person than he: from his shoulders and upward he was higher than any of the people.
3 And the asses of Kish Saul’s father were lost. And Kish said to Saul his son, Take now one of the servants with thee, and arise, go seek the asses. (A quaint writer says, “Saul’s obedience was a fit entrance upon his sovereignty. The service was homely for the son of a great man; yet, he refuseth not to go with his father’ servant, upon so mean a search. The disobedient and scornful are good for nothing; they are neither fit to be subjects nor governors. Kish was a great man in his country, yet he disdained not to send his son Saul upon a thrifty errand; neither does Saul plead that it would disgrace him. Pride and wantonness have marred our times. Great parents count it a dishonour to employ their sons in honest labour, and their pampered children think it a shame to do anything, and so behave themselves as if they counted it a glory to be idle or wicked.”)
4, 5 And he passed through mount Ephraim, and passed through the land of Shalisha, but they found them not: then they passed through the land of Shalim, and there they were not: and he passed through the land of the Benjamites, but they found them not. And when they were come to the land of Zuph, Saul said to his servant that was with him, Come, and let us return; lest my father leave caring for the asses, and take thought for us.
6 And he said unto him, Behold now, there is in this city a man of God, and he is an honourable man; all that he saith cometh surely to pass: now let us go thither; peradventure he can shew us our way that we should go. (They came to the man of God about asses, and learned something concerning a kingdom, and so many go to hear preachers out of idle curiosity, but God leads them into the kingdom of his dear Son.)
14, 15 And they went up into the city: and when they were come into the city, behold, Samuel came out against them, for to go up to the high place. Now the Lord had told Samuel in his ear a day before Saul came, saying,
16 To morrow about this time I will send thee a man out of the land of Benjamin, and thou shalt anoint him to be captain over my people Israel, that he may save my people out of the hand of the Philistines: for I have looked upon my people, because their cry is come unto me.
17 And when Samuel saw Saul, the Lord said unto him, Behold the man whom I spake to thee of! this same shall reign over my people.
18 Then Saul drew near to Samuel in the gate, and said, Tell me, I pray thee, where the seer’s house is.
19 And Samuel answered Saul, and said, I am the seer: go up before me unto the high place; for ye shall eat with me to day, and to morrow I will let thee go, and will tell thee all that is in thine heart. (That he did, and very much more. God’s ministers are enabled by his Spirit to lay bare men’s hearts, and then they tell them of the kingdom of heaven.)
20 And as for thine asses that were lost three days ago, set not thy mind on them; for they are found. And on whom is all the desire of Israel? Is it not on thee, and on all thy father’s house? (Who cares for asses when a kingdom is in view? Who will regard earthly joys when heaven is to be had? How foolish are those who spend all their thoughts upon this world’s straying asses, and lose the unfading crown.)
21 And Saul answered and said, Am not I a Benjamite, of the smallest of the tribes of Israel? and my family the least of all the families of the tribe of Benjamin? wherefore then speakest thou so to me?
26 And they arose early: and it came to pass about the spring of the day, that Samuel called Saul to the top of the house, saying, Up, that I may send thee away. And Saul arose, and they went out both of them, he and Samuel, abroad.
27 And as they were going down to the end of the city, Samuel said to Saul, Bid the servant pass on before us, but stand thou still a while, that I may shew thee the word of God. (This day let each of us endeavour to have a little season for thought and prayer; carrying this text in our hearts, “Stand thou still awhile, that I may shew thee the word of God.”)
Quit ye like men, be strong,
Fear not the foeman’s frown;
Nor suffer Satan’s deadliest blows
To beat your courage down.
The battle soon will yield,
If ye your parts fulfil:
For strong as is the hostile shield,
Your sword is stronger still.
Arise, ye saints arise!
The Lord your leader is;
The foe before his banner flies,
The victory is his.
O Sacred Spirit still
Abide with all thy saints,
If thou depart the glory’s gone,
And every warrior faints.
Vain is the outward ark,
Vain are the means of grace,
The sun is gone, the church is dark,
If thou dost hide thy face.
Depart not, gracious Lord,
Though we have griev’d thee sore
Still all thy sacred help afford,
Nor let us grieve thee more.
These idols tread beneath thy feet,
And to thyself the conquest get;
Let sin no more oppose my Lord,
Slain by thy Spirit’s two-edged sword.
Compel my soul thy sway to own;
Self-will, self-righteousness dethrone:
Let Dagon fall before thy face,
Destroyed by thine all conquering grace.
Holy and reverend is the name
Of our eternal King;
Thrice holy Lord! the angels cry;
Thrice holy! let us sing.
The deepest reverence of the mind,
Pay, O my soul! to God;
Lift, with thy hands, a holy heart
To his sublime abode.
With sacred awe pronounce his name,
Whom words nor thoughts can reach;
A broken heart will please him more
Than noblest forms of speech.
Yes, I will bless thee, O my God!
Through all my earthly days;
And to eternity prolong
Thy vast, thy boundless praise.
Nor shall my tongue alone proclaim
The honours of my God:
My life with all its active powers,
Shall spread thy praise abroad.
Soon shall my lips in endless praise,
Their grateful tribute pay;
The theme demands an angel’s tongue,
And an eternal day.
Thy name, almighty Lord,
Shall sound through distant lands;
Great is thy grace, and sure thy word;
Thy truth for ever stands,
Far be thine honour spread,
And long thy praise endure,
Till morning light and evening shade
Shall be exchanged no more.
April 22.—Evening. [Or August 12.]
“They have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters.”
1 Samuel 10:1; 17–27
THEN Samuel took a vial of oil, and poured it upon Saul’s head, and kissed him, and said, Is it not because the Lord hath anointed thee to be captain over his inheritance? (It has been, remarked that only a vial of oil was used, and not a horn as in the case of David; this seemed to foreshadow the shortness of Saul’s reign, and his own want of the plenteous grace of God.)
17, 18 ¶ And Samuel called the people together unto the Lord to Mizpeh; And said unto the children of Israel, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, I brought up Israel out of Egypt, and delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of all kingdoms, and of them that oppressed you:
19 And ye have this day rejected your God, who himself saved you out of all your adversities and your tribulations; and ye have said unto him, Nay, but set a king over us. Now therefore present yourselves before the Lord by your tribes, and by your thousands.
This is only one form of a common evil among the Lord’s people; they cannot walk by faith pure and simple, but want some intermediate arm to lean upon; they are not spiritual enough to rest content with the invisible God. Providence is not enough for many, they must have visible treasure; neither are they satisfied with the Lord’s aid, but cry out for an arm of flesh. To such the Lord often sends that which they seek for, and it becomes a plague to them, just as Saul became rather a curse to Israel than a blessing. When we pray we ought ever to say, “Not as I will, but as thou wilt,” lest the Lord should answer us in anger, and give us the desire of our hearts to be a solemn chastisement for our presumption.
20 And when Samuel had caused all the tribes of Israel to come near, the tribe of Benjamin was taken.
21 When he had caused the tribe of Benjamin to come near by their families, the family of Matri was taken, and Saul the son of Kish was taken: and when they sought him, he could not be found. (He knew from what Samuel had done to him, that the lot must fall upon himself, but he was modest or else fearful to undertake so weighty a business. Crowns are heavy things, and make the wearers’ heads ache full often; Saul was by no means to blame for hiding from so burdensome an honour. If men knew the trials of the great, they would cease from ambition.)
22 Therefore they enquired of the Lord further, if the man should yet come thither. And the Lord answered, Behold, he hath hid himself among the stuff. (God knows where we are. Let us never dream of hiding from him. We are like bees in a glass hive, and all we do he observes.)
23 And they ran and fetched him thence: and when he stood among the people, he was higher than any of the people from his shoulders and upward. (The kind of man to impress the populace and command respect. They might well look up to one who was taller than themselves by his head and shoulders.)
24 And Samuel said to all the people, See ye him whom the Lord hath chosen, that there is none like him among all the people? And all the people shouted, and said, God save the king.
25 Then Samuel told the people the manner of the kingdom, and wrote it in a book, and laid it up before the Lord. (Saul was to be monarch under God, and to govern constitutionally. The book was the nation’s Magna Charta.) And Samuel sent all the people away, every man to his house.
26 ¶ And Saul also went home to Gibeah; and there went with him a band of men, whose hearts God had touched. (They saw God’s hand in Saul’s choice, and stood by him.)
27 But the children of Belial said, How shall this man save us? (No man may hope to please everybody. The man whom God himself points out, is not the man for disaffected people. Saul was of good family, of noble stature, modest and unassuming, but all these things went for nothing with the malcontents. May none of us ever belong to that evil class of persons, who are always in opposition, always faultfinding, never willing to work with anybody. This is not the mind of Christ, nor the fruit of the Spirit, which is ever peaceable.) And they despised him, and brought him no presents. But he held his peace. (This was a very sensible course of action. The man who can be quiet will defeat his enemies. Be not hasty to defend yourself, or answer slanderous tongues. Stand still, and see the salvation of God.)
McConnell said he’d rather let states financially squeezed by the coronavirus declare bankruptcy instead of extend federal aid that would require further deficit spending.
“My guess is their first choice would be for the federal government to borrow money from future generations to send it down to them now so they don’t have to do that. That’s not something I’m going to be in favor of,” he said on Hugh Hewitt’s radio show.
Experts say states are facing a severe cash-crunch as tax revenues plummet and unemployment soars, leading to a need for immediate federal aid.
“I would certainly be in favor of allowing states to use the bankruptcy route. It saves some cities,” McConnell told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt. “And there’s no good reason for it not to be available.”
The host mentioned several states like California and Illinois that assumed high public employee union costs, and said he opposed an attempt from the federal government to rescue their finances.
“My guess is their first choice would be for the federal government to borrow money from future generations to send it down to them now so they don’t have to do that. That’s not something I’m going to be in favor of,” McConnell said.
The comments from McConnell come as states face the prospect of quickly depleted budgets in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. The Republican senator recently said on Tuesday the “extraodinary” national debt was a reason he sought to wait until May to push for more coronavirus relief in Congress.
States tend to operate differently from the federal government when it comes to their annual budgets. They usually can’t deficit-spend, meaning any increase in their expenditures must be financed with a tax increase or another new source of revenue, per the Urban Institute.
In the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, the idea of allowing states declare bankruptcy was roundly criticized by GOP and Democratic governors, as well as Wall Street investors and public sector unions, Bloomberg reported. They warned going that route would throw the bond market into chaos and lead states to face higher interest rates.
Many economists say states across the country face severe pressures on their finances as a result of the pandemic. The skyrocketing number of Americans filing for unemployment means state governments set to lose a crucial source of income and sales tax revenue as people drastically reduce their spending.
That’s combined with increased demand for safety net programs like Medicaid, which states are partially responsible for paying. Without another round of federal aid, cuts to public programs would be inevitable.
“If nothing changes, states will soon be forced to make deep cuts in vital public services, worsening the recession and slowing the ensuing recovery,” former top Obama administration economist Matt Fiedler wrote in a New York Times op-ed.
The National Governors Association has called for at least $500 billion in relief for states and local governments. But that was left out of the interim relief package aimed for small businesses and hospitals that the Senate passed on Tuesday.
President Trump has said state and municipal aid would be a part of the next coronavirus relief package.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Wednesday he favors allowing states struggling with high public employee pension costs amid the burdens of the pandemic response to declare bankruptcy rather than giving them a federal bailout.
With each passing day, the global outlook due to the COVID-19 Plannedemic grows bleaker and bleaker, as death tolls continue to rise and economies are either teetering on the edge of failure or collapsing outright. Here in America, our financial outlook is beyond grim, even after an historic $2 trillion dollar coronavirus stimulus bailout. Now today we have Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell telling states they should go bankrupt. Should that happen, overnight America will cease to be a superpower. It will happen just that fast.
“Behold, the nations are as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as the small dust of the balance: behold, he taketh up the isles as a very little thing.” Isaiah 40:15 (KJB)
For the past ten years, we here at NTEB having been warning you that the Deep State was going to collapse America, and in fact that sentiment was incorporated into our original page banner as you see below. God gave us an amazing window of grace with the election of Donald Trump, but that window looks like it’s in the process of closing right now. Please take a moment, you have the time during the lockdown, and I invite you to examine every element of this graphic I made ten years ago. Look at the images, read all the words, and understand that all these things that God put on my heart when He told me to start Now The End Begins are all coming to pass here in 2020. I told you it was coming, now it’s here. Ready or not.
The question all Americans should now be asking is not ‘when will the lockdown be over’, but rather ‘what will be waiting for us when it is?’, that’s the only question that people should be asking. Well, maybe not the only question. You should be asking yourself if you’re ready to leave this world on Flight #777 on Titus213 Airlines that is moments away from being cleared for take-off. And if that question is not on your mind, then you should be asking how prepared are you to function after you’ve been left behind. Yep, that’s a pretty good question. What’s your answer?
Mitch McConnell Says He Favors Allowing States to Declare Bankruptcy
FROM MSN: “I would certainly be in favor of allowing states to use the bankruptcy route,” Mitch McConnell said Wednesday in a response to a question on the syndicated Hugh Hewitt radio show. “It’s saved some cities, and there’s no good reason for it not to be available.”
The host cited California, Illinois and Connecticut as states that had given too much to public employee unions, and McConnell said he was reluctant to take on more debt for any rescue.
“My guess is their first choice would be for the federal government to borrow money from future generations to send it down to them now so they don’t have to do that,” he said. “That’s not something I’m going to be in favor of. I said yesterday we’re going to push the pause button here, because I think this whole business of additional assistance for state and local governments needs to be thoroughly evaluated,” Mitch McConnell added.
“You raised yourself the important issue of what states have done, many of them have done to themselves with their pension programs,” he said. “There’s not going to be any desire on the Republican side to bail out state pensions by borrowing money from future generations.”
The idea of allowing states to file for bankruptcy was raised in the wake of the last recession. It drew widespread disdain from Wall Street investors, public employee unions and both Republican and Democratic governors, who said it would unsettle the bond market and cause even the most fiscally sound states to face higher interest rates because of the risk the debt could be wiped out in court.
No state has defaulted on its debts since the Great Depression and even after the last recession only a handful of cities went bankrupt, since governments have broad ability to raise taxes. READ MORE
Only one month after offering a trial to families sheltered-in-place, faith-based streaming service RightNow Media reports more than 10,000 people worldwide have signed up.
Public officials have been talking a lot lately about “a light at the end of the tunnel.” For many families sheltered-in-place at home, streaming media has helped make this season bearable.
One month ago, streaming service RightNow Media took the unprecedented step of offering a free trial with hundreds of hours of Christian teaching and faith-driven kids content.
“In times like these, when the church is forced to operate in new ways, we want to be there to help,” said Brian Mosley, president of RightNow Media based in McKinney, Texas.
Founded in 1977, the ministry uniquely markets its streaming service to churches — who then offer their members free access. Over 10,000 new trial subscribers joined this past month, along with 153,000 individuals who activated accounts through their churches that subscribe.
In a phone interview, Mosley reveals why they decided to open up their library for free. He also shares the challenges of reaching diverse evangelical believers and responds to critics who say streaming video leads people away from the church.
Global Mission, Local Churches
Why did you decide to offer this free trial?
Brian Mosley: Our mission has always been to serve the church. Since many people are now home-bound for a season, we believe this is a time when we can provide some encouraging and helpful content.
We want anyone in the country or the world to have free access to some specific resources that we think could be beneficial in these uncertain times. We have chosen content that can help those with anxiety or fear as well as content that can help parents who find themselves with kids at home more than usual.
Some people might think this is similar to Netflix. How is RightNow Media unique in your focus on churches?
Mosley: As a ministry, our passion has always been using media to help people live out their faith — specifically, in and through the church. For 40 years, we have placed resources in the hands of church leaders and teachers. Then they can use those within their own ministries to people.
Today, more than 18,000 churches see our content as a valuable resource to equip and disciple their people. The churches pay a subscription fee; different size churches will pay a different monthly rate. They in turn can give their people free access.
Prior to the trial, over 3 million people had accounts with us and it’s grown since then. Some people use our videos for their own Bible study. But it’s more likely they are using it for leading a group, often a men’s, women’s, or youth Bible study. We help churches get that content in front of all their people with tools to announce and promote it.
Tailored for Diverse Audiences
What’s in your full library of content?
Mosley: Discipleship and teaching content for groups has long been the main part of our ministry, but not sermons per se. The most popular originals recently have been the projects walking through a book of the Bible and filmed in some unique locations.
We filmed Francis Chan teaching the Book of James in San Francisco, and Ephesians with J.D. Greear in North Carolina. They walk through the Scriptures in short chunks — each session just 10 to 12 minutes long. In those ten or so weeks going through that book, you’ll get a broad overview of that book.
There’s this sermon mindset that we’re trying to break away from, when it comes to videos. Going to church on a Sunday morning, you’re going to listen to a 30 to 50 minute sermon from someone on stage. From a video standpoint, it doesn’t always translate well and is not always engaging. Our videos are tailored specifically to a small group or individual watching it.
Our kids shows, the most entertainment-leaning content we have, have become a valuable part of the library. This is not only safe content, but it teaches kids along the way. Of course, we were never trying to compete with Netflix, Disney Plus, or these newer faith-based streaming services.
As RightNow seeks to serve Bible churches, Baptist circles, and beyond, what are the challenges of reaching the splintered world of evangelical churches?
Mosley: We serve a broad group of churches, and sometimes theological differences can make it challenging. Often the way that shows up is in terms of pastors or teachers that people are not willing to follow.
People are going to get excited by or, sometimes, real put off by the faces you put up there — whether Francis Chan or Jo Saxton or Tony Evans. If someone says, ‘I can’t get into that,’ then we can’t be one-size-fits-all for everybody. There’s always going to be some pushback, based on various topics or issues.
We give the churches we are serving the ability to filter and curate content for their people. If there’s a teacher or particular resource they don’t want their church to be aware of, they can turn that off. Our content is flexible to help meet their needs.
Being the Body
How does serving at a local church provide insight into meeting the needs of churches?
Mosley: For the last 16 years, I have been part of a little church that started up in my community. Every week, we meet as elders on Wednesday morning. I am up close and personal praying for people at the church — seeing the struggles and issues that happen as you do ministry and try to keep the doors open.
It gives me a deep passion for what pastors and churches are going through around the world as they seek to minister. At RightNow Media I tell our staff a lot: pastors did not get into ministry to answer emails, recruit volunteers, and listen to complaints. That’s not what they signed up for but, over time, it can be what they find themselves doing. It’s a necessary part of the job, but it’s not what they’re passionate about.
We come alongside and help shift the focus back to: How do we disciple and equip people? I know firsthand from being an elder how hard it can be to just minister to the church. When we’re really excited about discipling and equipping believers, it reignites something in leaders too.
Some people see streaming video as leading people away from the church. Does RightNow Media seek to change that?
Mosley: The last thing we would want to do is to act like our streaming service could replace going to church or participating in small group. I would hate for anybody to use technology, especially our platform, in that way — where being together locally as a church becomes unimportant.
We’ve had requests over the years: ‘Hey, would you create some sort of chat-driven community within your app so we can dialogue with each other about content?’ But we’ve resisted that.
Our app exists for you to watch the content before you go to a group and discuss it with other folks. Adding those kinds of functions would make it easier to fall into a pattern. Now I’m watching it on my own, I’m talking to people, I don’t need to go to this physical group.
We are big believers in being present with each other as the local body. It’s not just about the discussion and teaching, but being present because there will be moments when someone is suffering. Or you can celebrate with that person.
That’s one of the reasons we’ve gone through local churches. Perhaps this service even helps get you plugged in locally and grow in your faith.
Loving God, Loving Others
All media people choose to watch has some ideals behind it. With your content, how do you define what the ‘good life’ looks like?
Mosley: In our world, a lot of entertainment points to the good life being: what’s in it for me.
Our mission is to work with the global church, to inspire people to love others before self and Christ above all. There’s this desire within us, for this content to help get the attention off of me and on to: how do I love others? And how do I love God?
The good life, as empowered by the Holy Spirit, starts when my attention gets away from how I look or how I’m perceived or what’s in it for me. We’re asking that in reviewing this content, whether for kids or adults. Is it helping me think about my neighbor, my coworkers, our brothers and sisters around the world?
For that question to inspire action, it has to be grounded in a relationship with God. Our hope is this content provides seeds of inspiration. How am I worshipping, serving, and loving God more today than yesterday? It redirects the focus from self, more toward others around you.
President Donald Trump said on Wednesday he had instructed the U.S. Navy to fire on any Iranian ships that harass it at sea, a week after 11 vessels from Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy (IRGCN) came dangerously close to American ships in the Gulf.
Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps said on Wednesday it had successfully launched the country’s first military satellite into orbit, at a time of heightened tensions with the United States over Tehran’s nuclear and missile programs.
Spanish police have captured a former British rapper who was on the run after fighting for the Islamic State (IS) jihadist movement in Iraq and Syria, officials and media said.
North Korean state media on Wednesday made no mention of leader Kim Jong Un’s health or whereabouts, a day after intense international speculation over his health was sparked by media reports he was gravely ill after a cardiovascular procedure.
The Swiss government will keep current safety standards for fifth-generation (5G) mobile frequency emissions, it said on Wednesday, settling a debate that has delayed the rollout of the new technology.
President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that U.S. states are safely starting to reopen businesses, even as some public health officials warned that relaxing restrictions too quickly could trigger a new surge in cases of the coronavirus.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott said on Wednesday he will make an announcement next week about a plan to broadly reopen the state’s economy during the first week of May after early steps taken so far.
The U.S. House of Representatives will pass Congress’ latest coronavirus aid bill on Thursday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, paving the way for nearly $500 billion more in economic relief amid the pandemic.
White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow on Wednesday said the Trump administration would try to fairly distribute the next round of aid for small businesses hurt by the coronavirus outbreak, saying demand for the first round of funding was “overwhelming.”
President Donald Trump said in a tweet he would sign an executive order curbing immigration later on Wednesday, in a move he has said would protect U.S. workers amid the economic fallout from the coronavirus outbreak.
President Donald Trump said on Tuesday his new U.S. immigration ban would last 60 days and apply to those seeking ‘green cards’ for permanent residency in an effort to protect Americans seeking to regain jobs lost because of the coronavirus.
Bosnia’s top court ruled on Wednesday that a measure curtailing freedom of movement for people older than 65 and younger than 18 to try and halt the spread of the coronavirus is not in line with the constitution.
With just a few hundred ventilators and international aid slow to materialize, Sudan’s fledgling government knows it has an uphill battle against a coronavirus pandemic that has brought far richer countries to a standstill.
The United States wants to curb its reliance on China for specialized minerals used to make weapons and high-tech equipment, but it faces a Catch-22. It only has one rare earths mine – and government scientists have been told not to work with it because of its Chinese ties.
Oil traders are struggling to find enough ships, railcars, caverns and pipelines to store fuel as more conventional storage facilities fill up amid abundant supply and plummeting demand due to the coronavirus crisis.
As the world marked the 50th anniversary of Earth Day on Wednesday, calls were growing for governments to treat the shock of the coronavirus with “green recovery” packages to spur a shift to a low-carbon future.
SoftBank Group-backed OYO Hotels and Homes has cut salaries of all employees in India by 25% for four months starting in April and also put some of its staff on leave without pay.
AP Top Stories
The liberal candidate in Wisconsin’s hard-fought state Supreme Court race this month prevailed in voting by mail by a significant margin, upending years of study showing little advantage to either party when a state transitions from in-person to mail voting. The gap suggests that Democrats were more organized and proactive in their vote-by-mail efforts in an election conducted under extraordinary circumstances, with voters forced to weigh the health risks of voting in person against the sometimes unreliable option of requesting and mailing in their ballots.
The meltdown in oil markets is turning back the economic clock for Saudi Arabia, putting it on track for the deepest contraction in two decades.
Mexican officials warned Tuesday that the country is about to experience a major surge in coronavirus infections and deaths, as health professionals worried about overwhelmed hospitals, a prospective shortfall of doctors and a lack of medical equipment.
A prison in the Philippines is suffering from a major outbreak of the new coronavirus with 123 infected inmates, officials said on Wednesday, adding to concerns among activists about contagion risks in some of the world’s most overcrowded jails.
Kenyans filmed escaping from a coronavirus quarantine center will be hunted down and sent back there, President Uhuru Kenyatta has said.
Islamist militants have killed around 52 people in northern Mozambique, police say. The police say that the villagers in Cabo Delgado province were “massacred”, with some beheaded, after some people refused to be recruited into the militant group.
Romania has issued 200,000 fines in under a month to people who failed to comply with restrictions to curb the spread of coronavirus. The relatively high fines handed out between 24 March and 19 April amount to $72m, said to equal Romania’s February 2020 corporate tax take.
As millions of people are told to work from home and adjust to doing their jobs remotely, there are likely to be inconsistent desk set-ups where injuries are more likely.
Most beaches in Sydney, Australia remain closed during the ongoing lockdown, including the world-famous Bondi beach, but three have re-opened. Exercise is now allowed at the Coogee, Maroubra and Clovelly beaches, but social distancing rules are still in place.
Governors of 19 northern Nigerian states have shut down all traditional koranic schools in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The estimated nine million children attending the schools will be sent home.
The world is at risk of widespread famines “of biblical proportions” caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the UN has warned. A report estimates that the number suffering from hunger could go from 135 million to more than 250 million.
The estimated 56 million American children who are being homeschooled because of coronavirus-pandemic lockdowns is a growing catastrophe in the mind of Harvard Law School professor Elizabeth Bartholet and other educators. In an article for Harvard Magazine headlined “The Risks of Homeschooling,” Bartholet urged the government to step in to protect children from their own parents, reports PJ Media columnist Paula Bolyard. Bartholet, the faculty director of Harvard Law School’s Child Advocacy Program, told the magazine that homeschooling deprives children of their right to a “meaningful education.” She explained it’s “important that children grow up exposed to community values, social values, democratic values, ideas about nondiscrimination and tolerance of other people’s viewpoints.” PJ Media commented: “In other words, she knows that homeschooled children are being taught to think for themselves, and she won’t stand for it.”
The University of Chicago’s endowment is $8.2 billion, it raised more than $5.4 billion in its most recent campaign, and it just received more than $6 million in coronavirus relief funds. Students want some of that largesse dedicated to reducing their tuition. Namely, half of it. More than 1,700 students have signed a petition asking for a 50 percent cut in tuition for “as long as necessary” to help “struggling students and their families” during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Brooklyn yeshivas are operating in the shadows to avoid coronavirus lockdown restrictions, according to a report. The Orthodox Jewish schools are continuing to hold classes in private apartments and in locked buildings throughout Williamsburg.
Mid-Day Snapshot · Apr. 22, 2020
“Industry is increased, commodities are multiplied, agriculture and manufacturers flourish: and herein consists the true wealth and prosperity of a state.” —Alexander Hamilton (1790)
This blog is an aggregator of news and information that we believe will provide articles that will keep people informed about current trends, current events, discussions and movements taking place within our church and culture.
In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107,material here is distributed without profit for research and educational purposes. Any copyrighted material displayed or referenced is done under the doctrine of fair use.
An article and/or blog post link doesn’t necessarily mean that there is agreement or approval with all the views and opinions expressed within the linked article/posting. Caution is also warranted with regards to the advertisements and links that are embedded within the headline linked article.
“A simple layman armed with Scripture is to be believed above a pope or a council without it…” – Martin Luther
A woman wearing a protection mask to protect against coronavirus walks over Westminster Bridge in London, Wednesday April 22, 2020 during the COVID-19 lockdown. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
The Latest on the coronavirus pandemic. The new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness or death.
— Greta Thunberg urges world leaders to cooperate on virus, climate.
— Germany to start trial for coronavirus vaccine.
LONDON — The British government says 759 more people with the coronavirus have died in U.K. hospitals, taking the total to 18,100.
The daily increase reported was lower than the 823 in the previous 24-hour period.
The U.K.’s death toll is the fourth highest in Europe, behind Italy, Spain and France, all of whom have reported more than 20,000 deaths.
However, there has been increasing scrutiny of the U.K. figures in recent days for understating the actual number of people having died of COVID-19. The numbers don’t include those who have died in care homes or elsewhere in the community.
Earlier, British Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the country was at the “peak” but that it was too early to start considering a relaxation of the lockdown measures in place since March 23.
MADRID — Spain’s prime minister says confinement rules for the coronavirus outbreak will be relaxed gradually but according to scientific targets and not calendar dates.
Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez told parliament the government has been working on the plan for the past three weeks.
Sánchez foresees restrictions lifted at different speeds in different places, such as urban or rural areas, because the pandemic is “asymmetrical.”
Epidemiologists will help determine the pace, based on how the pandemic ebbs. Sánchez says the criteria include the capacity of the public health system in the area and the local number of infections and deaths.
Spain has recorded more than 208,000 infection cases and 21,700 deaths.
COLOMBO, Sri Lanka — Sri Lanka is sending special flights to bring back hundreds of students stranded in India, Pakistan and Nepal.
SriLankan Airlines will operate special flights from Amristar and Coimbatore in India, Karachi and Lahore in Pakistan and Kathmandu in Nepal. The flights will bring back 433 students stranded in those cities.
The returnees will be sent to the military-run quarantine centers where they’ll stay for 14 days.
The airline earlier operated similar flights to bring home pilgrims and students stranded in countries such as China and India.
SriLankan Airline has suspended passenger flights until April 30 while operating cargo and special flights. Last month, Sri Lanka closed its international airport for inbound international commercial passenger flights.
STOCKHOLM — Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg is urging world leaders to act together to cope with crises and to listen to science experts.
The 17-year-old Swede says the climate crisis “may not be as immediate as the corona crisis but we need to tackle this now otherwise it will be irreversible.” She calls the virus outbreak “a tragedy.”
She says world leaders must put differences aside and make decisions that “in the long run may be necessary.”
She spoke during a conversation with Johan Rockstrom, co-director of Germany’s Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, in a live online event to mark the 50th anniversary of Earth Day.
Many large cities are smog-free after shutdowns caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Major cities have seen reductions of deadly particulate matter from the previous year.
VATICAN CITY — The Vatican is thinking ahead to a “Phase II” of the coronavirus pandemic and plans to resume normal activities starting early next month.
The Vatican says its secretary of state, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, met with the Holy See’s top officials on Wednesday to “reflect on a second phase of the COVID-19 emergency.”
Italy, the European epicenter of the pandemic, is planning a gradual reopening of some activity and services starting May 4. In a statement, the Vatican says it would follow suit, deciding on a “gradual reactivation of ordinary services, while keeping in place the health precautions aimed at limiting contagion.”
The Vatican closed its doors to tourists when Italy locked down in early March after recording its first domestic case Feb. 21. The Vatican has registered nine positive tests so far.
BUCHAREST, Romania — Romania’s president says people will be allowed to travel freely within the country after May 15, the same day that wearing of masks in closed spaces and public transport will become mandatory.
President Klaus Iohannis says other restrictions, including a ban on large gatherings, will remain in effect. Iohannis is scheduled to meet with education officials to examine how schools can gradually reopen.
A state of emergency because of the pandemic first declared March 16 was later extended until May 15. Romania has reported 9,710 coronavirus cases and 508 deaths.
BERLIN — Germany’s health minister has regulatory approval for the first trial in the country of a vaccine for the coronavirus.
Jens Spahn says the trial will involve 200 people ages 18-55. He cautioned the process of fully testing the vaccine would take months.
Germany’s regulatory authority, the Paul Ehrlich Institute, approved the trial for an RNA-based vaccine being jointly developed by BioNTech and Pfizer. Regulatory approval for trials is also being sought in the United States and China.
Numerous companies are racing to develop a vaccine for the coronavirus that has infected more than 2.5 million people worldwide and caused at least 178,000 deaths in the past four months.
LONDON — Acting British Prime Minister Dominic Raab says the government is still targeting 100,000 tests a day for coronavirus by the end of this month — even though it’s more than 80,000 short with just eight days to go.
In the first hybrid prime minister’s questions in the House of Commons with a maximum 50 lawmakers allowed in the legislature, Raab conceded there will need to be an “exponential” increase in tests in coming days.
The most recent daily figures show that only 18,206 tests were conducted, even though the government has ramped up capacity to a potential 40,000.
Raab is filling in for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson while he recovers from COVID-19.
Keir Starmer, the new leader of Britain’s main opposition Labour Party, criticized the government for being slow in putting Britain into lockdown and getting the necessary personal protective equipment for front-line staff.
WARSAW, Poland — Greenpeace activists marked Earth Day in Poland by unfurling banners before the main government office in Warsaw saying that a return to normal after the anti-COVID-19 stay-at-home measures will spell a crisis for the environment.
One of the red banners unfurled before the office of Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki read, “Normal was a Problem. Future can be Better.”
Poland’s Environment Ministry has noted wild animals have ventured into space usually taken up by humans.
People have been under home isolation since March 16. The ban to enter woods and parks was lifted Monday. The nation of 38 million has reported over 10,000 COVID-19 cases and 404 deaths.
HANOI — Vietnam will loosen travel restrictions as the country lifts a nationwide shutdown after no new COVID-19 cases were reported the past week.
The government announced the confinement order will be lifted starting Thursday in most cities and provinces except in the capital Hanoi, which has nearly half of the country’s 268 infections. Vietnam is among a few countries with no reported deaths from the virus.
The government requests people carry on social distancing and bans public gathering of more than 20 people, in-dining restaurants and other nonessential business will remain closed. In several provinces where no infection was reported, schools will be reopened. Students will be scanned for temperature before entering the premises.
“We have basically contained the situation, but we must stay alert and take very careful steps when reopening the country,” deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam said.
Vietnam shut down its border with China in January, stopped international arrivals in mid-March and vigorously carried out contact tracing down to commune level.
KYIV, Ukraine — Police in Ukraine launched criminal cases against priests who defied quarantine regulations and allowed believers inside churches for the Easter services without face masks.
The country’s Interior Ministry says some 130,000 people attended Easter church services on Sunday. It says quarantine regulations were violated in 19 churches across 13 regions.
Five criminal cases have been launched against priests in two parishes of the Moscow-affiliated Orthodox Church in Ukraine. The priests may face up to eight years in prison.
Ukraine has registered 6,592 cases of the coronavirus and 174 deaths. The government ordered a strict lockdown in March, banning all public events, suspending most public transport and urging people to stay home.
BERLIN — A regional lawmaker in Berlin is proposing that a 1,000-bed field hospital being built in the German capital be used to treat coronavirus patients from Italy.
Catherina Pieroth-Manelli told public broadcaster rbb Wednesday the move would send a signal of solidarity to Italy, which has been hardest hit in Europe by the pandemic.
Pieroth-Manelli, a member of the Greens that are part of a three-party governing coalition in Berlin state, said the offer would depend on how the number of infections develop in Germany.
Even without the field hospital, which will be completed at the end of the month, only about a quarter of the existing hospital beds set side for COVID-19 patients in Berlin are currently in use. Germany currently has about 50,000 active cases, about 1,300 of them in Berlin.
Germany has already taken in more than 200 patients from other European countries, including Italy, France and the Netherlands.
JOHANNESBURG — South Africa’s president has told Parliament that he is deploying another 73,000 members of the national defense forces to help enforce a coronavirus lockdown and support other government efforts.
President Cyril Ramaphosa shortly before the lockdown began in late March deployed more than 2,500 troops.
Defense Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula tells local radio station that the dramatic new increase is in part so defense forces can transport and bury bodies and even build mortuaries if South Africa’s death toll rises sharply. The country has the most virus cases in Africa with more than 3,400, including 58 deaths.
“What informs us is what we’ve seen in other countries,” the minister says. “If it doesn’t happen in South Africa, thank god.”
BRUSSELS — Belgium says the coronavirus crisis spiked about 10 days ago and he nation is getting into a safer zone but only if it doesn’t drop all the medical precautions used to contain the spread of COVID-19.
Crisis center spokesman Prof. Steven Van Gucht says it was “positive to see that the peak of deaths seems to be behind us. It was around April 12 both for hospitals as for care homes.”
An additional 266 deaths were added to the list on Wednesday, bringing Belgium’s total to 6,262. The count in Belgium is high because it uses different statistical measures compared to most countries. It fully counts deaths in hospitals and care homes and also includes victims who are thought to have died of COVID-19, even if they have not been tested for the virus.
Many among the dead announced Wednesday may have died in the past few days, sometimes going a week back, says Van Gucht.
The government will announce Friday the measures to be relaxed for the nation of 11 million.
LONDON — A Royal Air Force plane believed to be carrying badly needed surgical gowns has landed in the U.K. as Britain scrambled to deal with shortages of critical protective materials for medics in the COVID-19 outbreak.
The plane landed Wednesday at RAF Brize Norton. Two other planes are on stand-by to pick up more materials from Turkey.
It was not immediately clear if the plane contained the needed surgical gowns, which had been due to arrive over the weekend.
Britain has been struggling to get personal protective equipment to front-line medics. Doctors have expressed concern that they are risking their lives because of inappropriate supplies.
Health minister Helen Whately says 61 members of the National Health Service have died in the outbreak.
BERLIN — Germany’s most populous state says it will make wearing face masks compulsory in shops and on public transport starting Monday. The decision by North Rhine-Westphalia, home to nearly 18 million people, means that most German regions have now taken comparable steps.
The eastern state of Saxony became the first to impose an obligation to wear masks or some other face covering on Monday. A steady trickle of regions have followed in announcing similar plans, although some – such as Berlin – will require them only on public transport. North Rhine-Westphalia was joined Wednesday by three more states: Lower Saxony, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland.
The federal and state governments agreed last week to “urgently recommend” that people wear masks or some other covering on public transport and in shops, but stopped short of making them obligatory.
In Germany, the 16 state governments are ultimately responsible for imposing and loosening lockdowns. That means that although federal and state governments have sought to coordinate their moves, there have been several regional variations in the nation of 83 million people.
BELGRADE, Serbia — Vendors selling vegetables, fruit and dairy products were back at Serbia’s markets on Wednesday as authorities allowed for the reopening of the open-air facilities with the easing of some measures against the new coronavirus.
Wearing protective face masks and gloves, the sellers have put up their products on the stalls as first customers trickled in to buy fresh spring offerings at an open air green market in central Belgrade.
Such markets are very popular in the Serbian capital with many scattered throughout the city of 2 million. One vendor says “there are not too many people yet, but this very good.”
Elsewhere in the city, shops selling technical goods and book stores also reopened as part of the easing of lockdown restrictions. Authorities have also shortened a daily curfew by one hour and allowed people over 65 years old to go for a walk three times a week.
Serbia’s elderly had been ordered indoors for over a month and the daily and weekend curfews were introduced in the Balkan country that saw some of the toughest rules against the outbreak.
Serbia so far has reported 6,890 infections with the new coronavirus and 130 deaths.
NEW DELHI, India — India is planning to bring an ordinance that will make attacks on health care professionals a serious offense with a jail term from six months up to seven years.
Federal minister Prakash Javadekar on Wednesday said the ordinance will be implemented as a law after President Ram Nath Kovind’s sanction.
“There will be absolutely no tolerance to attacks on doctors and healthcare professionals,” said Javadekar.
Once approved, the law will take effect immediately. Under the law, health care professionals will also be extended insurance coverage.
Several health care workers in India have been attacked as they battle to stop the spread of the coronavirus. Doctors have also endured campaigns from their neighbors to force them out of apartments and attacks by violent mobs.
Earlier on Wednesday, Indian Medical Association withdrew their symbolic protest, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government promised to ensure their safety against rising violence over fears that medical staff in India is spreading the coronavirus.
Indian Medical Association had asked the federal government to enact a law against health care violence.
India has so far reported 19,984 cases of COVID-19 with 640 deaths.
BEIJING — China has slammed a lawsuit brought against it by the U.S. state of Missouri over the global pandemic as “very absurd.”
Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said Wednesday the legal action had “no factual and legal basis at all,” and repeated defenses of China’s response to the outbreak that has largely subsided in the country where it was first detected.
The ministry and other Chinese government departments have strenuously denied accusations that officials delayed reporting on the extent of the outbreak in the central Chinese city of Wuhan late last year, even as reports pile up that worries over political stability were placed above public health concerns.
Missouri’s top state prosecutor on Tuesday announced the lawsuit that alleges Chinese officials are to blame for the pandemic that has sickened around 2.5 million worldwide, thrown tens of millions out of work and devastated local economies, including in China.
The state’s action will likely end up being largely symbolic, however, since lawsuits against other countries typically don’t go anywhere because U.S. law generally prohibits them. Independent reports say Missouri has reported 215 deaths from the virus.
MADRID — Spain saw its death total reach 21,717 cases as its government weathers criticism about how it will let children out of a six-week lockdown.
Spain’s health authorities said Wednesday that 435 more people have died in the last 24 hours. Authorities also reported 4,211 new confirmed infections, taking the total to 208,389 cases since the start of the pandemic.
Yielding to pressure from some parents, Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez announced Sunday that children would be allowed out as of April 27, without specifying the exact rules for the outings.
Sánchez is appearing before Spain’s Parliament Wednesday to ask for a third two-week extension of the state of emergency that has given his government extraordinary powers to confine the country. The main opposition party has conditioned its support on a proper explanation of what children can do next week.
In another sign that the health crisis is becoming manageable, a large makeshift morgue in a Madrid ice rink is closing as the daily toll drops under 500 deaths from a high of 950 three weeks ago.
Only the United States and Italy have more deaths than Spain from the virus, and only the U.S. has more infections.
PRAGUE — The number of people tested positive in the Czech Republic has surpassed 7,000 as the country has been easing restrictive measures adopted to contain the pandemic of the coronavirus.
Overall, 7,041 Czechs were infected with the virus, according to Health Ministry figures released on Wednesday, while 204 have died.
The health authorities registered 133 new cases on Tuesday as 8,301 tests were conducted that day. That’s down from 154 cases the previous day.
A total of 186,918 tests have been done in the country. On Tuesday, 412 patients needed hospitalization and 80 of them intensive care.
On Thursday, the country will start a two-week testing of 27,000 people across the country in a study to determine undetected infections with the coronavirus in its population.
DHAKA, Bangladesh — The total death toll from the coronavirus in Bangladesh reached 120 while the number of total infections rose to 3,772 with another 390 positive cases on Wednesday, an official said.
Nasima Sultana, additional director general of the Directorate General of Health Services, said another 10 people, including seven men and three women, died over last 24 hours amid growing concern that the upward trend could continue over next few weeks as community transmission has taken place across the country.
Reports say many positive cases are asymptomatic, which poses a serious threat to the community. A nationwide lockdown is in place until Saturday to help contain the virus from spreading.
“People always have been and they always will be stupid victims of deceit and self-deception in politics.” –Vladimir Lenin
Today in America, you have the president of the United States, under false and contrived pretenses, advocating along with Dr. Anthony Fauci and Bill Gates, to push forth their global agenda. You have to ask yourself, who is the president?
As a matter of fact, every one of President Trump’s coronavirus response team members is fronting for what Bill Gates is selling. I wonder, is this how you “Make America Great Again”?
This is, without a doubt, a preplanned global agenda that is predicated on criminal fraud (Jeremiah 11:9).
Videos below show both Bill Gates and Anthony Fauci forecasting the virus as well as the crisis from 2015 to 2017.
Each one of these videos below is based on professional analysis concerning the origins and makeup of the coronavirus.
The sad fact of the matter is that there are some people in this country that are still under the delusion that special interest groups are not behind the politicians who are selling the American people out to the highest bidders (Exodus 23:8; Luke 22:48).
Somehow or another people seem to believe that what is taking place is not life-threatening, it is. As a matter of fact, outside of these corrupt individuals, both politicians and special interest groups, it is what is in the vaccinations that is life threatening (Leviticus 19:19).
Yet, some people in this country are still under some delusional cloud as if to suggest that what this government-special interest groups is responsible for is somehow legal.
Until Americans come to terms with the fact this is criminal and that this is foreign to American government, these politicians, as well as special interest groups are going to continue on until they are lawfully stopped, and now. Read Article 2, Section 4, and Article 1, Section 3, Clause 7 of the United States Constitution.
Shut down corrupt politicians and you shut down special interest groups, period (Psalm 94:16).
He who is holy, who is true, who has the key of David, who opens and no one will shut, and who shuts and no one opens, says this: (3:7c)
The Lord Jesus Christ, the divine author of the seven letters, always introduces Himself with a description reflecting His character. In the previous five letters, those descriptions had come from the vision recorded in 1:12–17. But this description of Him is unique and not drawn from that earlier vision. It has distinctly Old Testament features.
He who is holy refers to God, who alone possesses absolute holiness. The Old Testament repeatedly describes God as the Holy One (e.g., 2 Kings 19:22; Job 6:10; Pss. 71:22; 78:41; Isa. 43:15; 54:5; Hab. 3:3). Isaiah 6:3 solemnly declares, “Holy, Holy, Holy, is the Lord of hosts, the whole earth is full of His glory” (cf. Rev. 4:8). To say that God is holy is to say that He is utterly separate from sin; therefore His character is absolutely unblemished and flawless.
The title “Holy One” is used in the New Testament as a messianic title for the Lord Jesus Christ. In Mark 1:24 a terrified demon screamed, “What business do we have with each other, Jesus of Nazareth? Have You come to destroy us? I know who You are—the Holy One of God!” Announcing His birth to Mary, the angel described Jesus as “the holy Child” (Luke 1:35). In John 6:69 Peter affirmed, “We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God.” Later he rebuked the unbelieving Jews because they “disowned the Holy and Righteous One and asked for a murderer to be granted to [them]” (Acts 3:14).
Jesus’ identification of Himself as He who is holy can be no less than a direct claim to deity. The Lord Jesus Christ possesses in undiminished, unaltered essence the holy and sinless nature of God. Because Christ is holy, His church must be as well. “Like the Holy One who called you,” wrote Peter, “be holy yourselves also in all your behavior” (1 Pet. 1:15). That the omniscient Holy One gave no rebuke, warning, or condemnation to the Philadelphia church speaks very well of them indeed.
Not only is Jesus Christ the Holy One; He also describes Himself as He who is true. Truth is used in combination with holiness to describe God in Revelation 6:10; 15:3; 16:7; 19:2, 11. Alēthinos (true) denotes that which is genuine, authentic, and real. In the midst of the falsehood, perversion, and error that fills the world, the Lord Jesus Christ is the truth (John 14:6).
Third, Christ describes Himself as the One who has the key of David. As is clear from Revelation 5:5 and 22:16, David symbolizes the messianic office. A key in Scripture represents authority; whoever holds a key has control (cf. 1:18; 9:1; 20:1; Matt. 16:19). The term the key of David also appears in Isaiah 22:22, where it refers to Eliakim, the steward or prime minister to Israel’s king. Because of his office, he controlled access to the monarch. As the holder of the key of David, Jesus alone has the sovereign authority to determine who enters His messianic kingdom (cf. John 10:7, 9; 14:6; Acts 4:12). Revelation 1:18 reveals that Jesus has the keys to death and hell; here He is depicted as having the keys to salvation and blessing.
Finally, Jesus identifies Himself as He who opens and no one will shut, and who shuts and no one opens. That description stresses Christ’s omnipotence; what He does cannot be overturned by someone more powerful. “I act and who can reverse it?” declared the Lord in Isaiah 43:13 (cf. Is. 46:9–11; Jer. 18:6; Dan. 4:35). No one can shut the doors to the kingdom or to blessing if He holds them open, and no one can force them open if He holds them shut. In light of the promise in verse 8, Christ could also be referring to opening and shutting doors for service. In either case, the emphasis is on His sovereign control over His church.
That Jesus Christ, the holy, true, sovereign, omnipotent Lord of the church, found nothing to condemn in the Philadelphia church must have been a joyous encouragement to them.
7 The letter to the church in Philadelphia begins with the speaker’s identifying himself as “him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open.” Each of these identifications calls attention to Jesus as the true Messiah. “Holy and true” relates to God himself and describes aspects of his presence among us (cf. 6:10). Holiness is the attribute of God whereby we sense the presence of the “Wholly Other,” the one who says, “I am God, and not man—the Holy One among you” (Hos 11:9). He is the “True One” in that he is wholly trustworthy and reliable in his words and actions. For this congregation for whom Christ has only commendation, these titles would bring encouragement, despite their “little strength” (v. 8) to go on in their faithfulness, in contrast to those described in v. 9.
The reference to the “key of David” alludes to Isaiah 22:20–25 and the incident of transferring the post of secretary of state in Judah from the unfaithful Shebna to the faithful Eliakim. The “key” signifies the power of the keys normally held by the king himself, unless delegated to another. The use of the name “David” points to Christ as the Messiah, who alone determines who will participate in his kingdom and who will be turned away: “what he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open.” This may allude to the false claims of certain Jews at Philadelphia who argued that they, not the heretical Nazarenes, would inherit the kingdom of David (v. 9) and thus excluded the followers of Jesus. But the true Messiah, Jesus, will exclude them!
7 Apparently all suitable phrases from the vision of chapter 1 have been used up, so from other sources the speaker identifies himself as the true Messiah who controls access to the eternal kingdom. While the NIV uses “holy and true” to describe the risen Christ, a more literal translation of the Greek text is “the Holy One, the True One” (ho hagios, ho alēthinos). In Jewish culture the Holy One was a familiar title for God (e.g., Isa 40:25; Hab 3:3; Mark 1:24; John 6:69; 1 Clem. 23:5). Here it is joined with “the True One” and applied to Christ. In Rev 6:10 they are combined to further describe God just addressed as “Sovereign Lord.” If “true” is taken in the classical sense of “genuine,” it may be used in 3:7 to refute those Jews of Philadelphia who would claim that Christ was a false Messiah. If it is taken in the OT sense of “faithful,”9 it could serve to remind the believers at Philadelphia that not only has Christ been set apart (the root meaning of hagios) to carry out his messianic task, but that he can be counted on to carry it to completion.
Christ is next described as having “the key of David,”12 a metaphorical expression indicating complete control over the royal household. Specifically, in view of the following clauses, it means the undisputed authority to admit or exclude from the New Jerusalem. The background is the oracle against Shebna, Hezekiah’s major-domo (Isa 22:15–25), who was to be removed from office and replaced with Eliakim. Concerning the new chief steward the text says, “I will place on his shoulder the key to the house of David; what he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open” (Isa 22:22; cf. Job 12:14b). The language of Isaiah is used to present Christ as the Davidic Messiah with absolute power to control entrance to the heavenly kingdom. It may be an intentional contrast with the practice of the local synagogue in excommunicating Christian Jews.
3:7 / Located near to Sardis, Philadelphia was a relatively new city, founded during the second century b.c. by Attalus II Philadelphus. This may be in John’s mind when he writes to the Philadelphian church about the new Jerusalem (3:12). The “new” Philadelphia had been planned as a center for the hellenization program that was encouraged and financed by Attalus. The more conservative voices of the vibrant Jewish community in Philadelphia no doubt tried to thwart such a program and may have resisted Christianity as an element of their efforts in this regard (cf. 3:9).
For the only time in Revelation, Christ is called holy and true—the appellation used for God in 6:10. As an attribute of his lordship, Christ’s ongoing claim upon the church is based on his oneness with God his Father—a critical emphasis of Johannine Christology (cf. John 10:22–30). According to John, the authority of Jesus was first recognized and confessed by Peter (cf. John 6:69) and later clarified by Martha (cf. John 11:27); his teachings brought forth eternal life in those who believed (cf. John 6:63–64). The epistle 1 John brings together the realization of eternal life and sinless existence as the result of knowing “him who is true—even (God’s) Son Jesus Christ” (1 John 5:20; cf. John 20:31).
On this basis, assurance can now be given that Christ holds the key of David (cf. 1:18) that opens what no one can shut, and … shuts what no one can open. This reference to David probably has the Jewish opponents of 3:9 in mind. No doubt they disputed the church’s claim that Jesus is the promised Davidic Christ, whose key unlocks the door into the household of eschatological Israel (cf. Isa. 22:22). Rather than a defeated “anti-Christ,” as his scandalous death might suggest to unbelieving Jews (cf. 1 Cor. 1:23), Jesus is the Messiah, holy and true, whose mission is to shut … and … open Israel’s entrance into God’s kingdom (cf. Luke 2:33–34).
3:7These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open. Christ is described as “the holy one, the true one,” both attributes of God in Revelation 6:10 but used here to demonstrate Christ’s deity. The phrase “the Holy One” is used frequently in the Old Testament to describe Yahweh and also in the Gospels to identify Jesus as one sent from God (e.g., Isa. 1:4; 37:23; Mark 1:24; Luke 4:34; John 6:69). Referring to Jesus as the “true one” shows his authenticity and faithfulness. Jesus now holds the “key of David,” an image drawn from Isaiah 22:22, where Eliakim is given the keys to the house of David. Jesus, rather than the local synagogue rulers, has sovereign control over who gets into God’s kingdom and its eternal city, the new Jerusalem (cf. 3:12). For believers who have been expelled from the local synagogue, the knowledge that Christ alone holds the power to grant entrance into God’s kingdom is deeply reassuring. Interestingly, in Matthew 16:18–19 Jesus passes this privilege of keeping the keys to Peter and the other apostles.
3:7 (characteristic). For the first time in these letters Christ identifies himself by using a symbol not found in the opening vision of chapter 1: who holds the key of David. This is similar to Isaiah’s prophecy concerning Eliakim, who became the royal guardian of ancient Jerusalem: I will place on his shoulder the key to the house of David; what he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open (Isa. 22:22). Christ alone has the authority to admit persons to his heavenly city. Because he is holy and true, no one can ever argue that his admission of some and refusal of others is unrighteous.
U.S. Army chaplains produced encouraging videos and posted them to their brigade’s Facebook page, but they were removed just hours later after one group complained, arguing the posts violated religious freedom.
The Military Religious Freedom Foundation filed a complaint with the Army’s 10th Mountain Division Sustainment Brigade in Fort Drum, New York, after announcing it had received complaints about the faith-based videos.
Mikey Weinstein, founder and president of MRFF, sent a letter to the brigade, demanding the “illicit proselytizing videos” by chaplains Amy Smith and Scott Ingram be removed from the Army Facebook page.
Rather than being posted on the brigade’s main page, MRFF contended the prayerful clips should have been hosted on the Facebook account for the Fort Drum Chapel.
Weinstein seemed to take particular issue with one video in which Smith encouraged members of the Fort Drum community to visit the campus Labyrinth.
“It’s going to feel like you are walking in circles, but sometimes in life, that is what you feel like,” she explained. “Sometimes, you will be toward the outside. At times in our walk with God, we can be asking God, ‘Where are you? Where are you in the midst of this COVID-19?’ Other times, you will be more toward the center, and you can hear God’s voice, and you can hear Him and you can sense Him, even in the midst of all the craziness that is going on with all the worry, fear, and anxiety.”
The MRFF leader said he was greatly bothered by that video, because Smith “exhorts soldiers to query God as to where God is during this COVID-19 pandemic.”
In another video posted April 2, Ingram cited Isaiah 41, encouraging viewers to put their trust in God in the midst of such uncertainty.
“Change is never easy,” he said, “but together, we can walk forward in supernatural strength in the confidence that we are not forsaken.”
Weinstein ultimately thanked the Army brigade for removing the videos, but reprimanded the chaplains for having posted them in the first place, arguing they should have known better than to ever publish faith-based content on a U.S. military Facebook page.
He went on to explain he was “NOT so pleased” the “unconstitutional religious videos” were ever viewable on the brigade’s Facebook page.
“MRFF and its military clients would greatly prefer that the Army would have taken this action sua sponte (‘ON ITS OWN’), without having to cause MRFF to make these obviously valid demands to ensure church-state separation in the first place on behalf of aggrieved Army personnel who justly fear reprisal, retribution, revenge and retaliation for taking their grievances up the chain of command,” Weinstein said.
This is not the first time the MRFF has targeted prayer in the military.
For example, in the summer of 2016, the MRFF urged the U.S. Department of Defense to investigate several Christian military chaplains, saying they violated federal rules by praying publicly while in uniform at an event promoting religious liberty.
Then, last spring, the MRFF successfully forced the removal of a World War II-era Bible from a veterans’ hospital display in Manchester, New Hampshire. Weinstein argued the exhibit, intended to honor the nation’s POWs, emphasized “one faith over another faith.”
Weinstein added that he issued the letter to the VA hospital after receiving complaints from 14 veterans, one of whom was suicidal. The Bible’s presence in the hospital, he claimed, was “pushing him closer” to committing suicide.
Veteran Paul Martin, whose Northeast POW-MIA Network was responsible for the faith-based display, defended the exhibit, saying, “That Bible is not just a religious artifact — that some people would say they’re stuffing religion down my throat.”
“What it means is this guy held on to a lot of faith and hope, family and trust in this nation that they would do everything they possibly could to bring him home,” he said.
As the COVID-19 shutdown across the US continues, one cannot but help see the importance of specialization and the division of labor time and time again, as many Americans deal with true shortages of goods for the first time in their lives. Specialization has allowed us to enjoy a much more prosperous life than we would were we all to do everything ourselves. However, as with everything in this imperfect world, specialization comes with certain tradeoffs that are important to understand. As the unemployment numbers continue to rise by millions more every week, as meager savings are eliminated, and as our highly organized society slides into chaos it is important to understand the way in which an unbalanced intellectual specialization has contributed to bringing about the current crisis.
In his 1930 book The Revolt of the Masses, Spanish philosopher José Ortega y Gasset addresses what he considers to be a strange byproduct of the prevalence of specialization in everything, specifically the intellectual sphere. “Previously,” he writes, “men could be divided simply into the learned and the ignorant, those more or less the one, and those more or less the other.” Now, however, a new kind of person has emerged, “an extraordinarily strange kind of man,” who cannot be called “learned for he is formally ignorant of all that does not enter into his specialty,” yet at the same time cannot be considered “ignorant because he is ‘a scientist’ who ‘knows’ very well his own tiny portion of the universe.” Thus, Ortega y Gasset says that the only fitting name for such a person is a “learned ignoramus.”
There can be no doubt that numerous learned ignoramuses can be found in all parts of society, but most importantly they are very clearly involved in the response to the COVID-19 virus, as sweeping calls for months of lockdown make clear.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and seen by many as the face of the federal virus response, has perhaps made the most ridiculous assertion, stating at a White House briefing on April 1 that “we could ‘relax social distancing’ once there’s ‘no new cases, no deaths,’ but the real turning point won’t come until there’s a vaccine.” Similarly, Dr. Zeke Emanuel, an architect of Obamacare and current advisor to Joe Biden, declared that it will be impossible to return to “normalcy” for eighteen months and that no matter the economic cost: “The truth is we have no choice….We cannot return to normal until there’s a vaccine.”
Such ideas are frankly madness, and would take an incalculable toll on the health and wealth of all Americans. Tens of millions of Americans find themselves out of work or with reduced hours or pay. The idea that society could continue to exist in such a state betrays a lack of any understanding of the social order.
Smithfield Foods is shutting down a meat processing plant that produces 4 to 5 percent of all the pork in the entire country, and its CEO warned that “the closure of this facility, combined with a growing list of other protein plants that have shuttered across our industry, is pushing our country perilously close to the edge in terms of our meat supply. It is impossible to keep our grocery stores stocked if our plants are not running.”
Mass unemployment will inevitably lead to an increase in suicide and substance abuse and the stay-at-home orders have already led to increased domestic violence. New instances of outrageous police conduct in the name of enforcing lockdowns emerge everyday. It is no exaggeration to say that in eighteen months there would likely not be any society left to “reopen.”
Truly, only learned ignoramuses could suggest such an obviously catastrophic course of action. Those plebeians who dare to question “experts” such as Fauci and Emanuel are lectured to listen to their betters, who use “science” to understand the situation and are far more knowledgeable. In other words, “stay in your lane.” Yet such critics miss their glaring contradiction. Public health officials certainly have a role to play, but they themselves are not experts at everything. By definition, they do not fully understand the other consequences and considerations that must be weighed and balanced, and they, of course, are lacking in the local dispersed knowledge needed to make such decisions. Yet that does not stop them from making declarations dripping with arrogance, such as Fauci’s assessment of the implosion of the economy and the resulting unemployment and hardship as being merely “inconvenient from an economic and a personal standpoint.” As Ortega y Gasset pointed out, learned ignoramuses are “ignorant, not in the fashion of the ignorant man, but with all the petulance of one who is learned in his own special line.”
The phenomenon of the learned ignoramus can be seen in every field and at all levels of intellectual life and popular punditry. However, the current crisis reveals the damage such “experts” can wreak upon civilization itself.
Ortega y Gasset fully recognized the important role that specialization has in making modern life possible; however, he calls for a balanced intellectual specialization, in contrast to the unbalanced status quo that he fears threatens the advancement of scientific discovery itself. Two such balanced intellectuals are without a doubt Ludwig von Mises and F.A. Hayek; although economists, they could be more accurately called social thinkers whose work encompassed far more than that of the typical economist today.
Rather than insular, unbalanced specialization, Mises argued that “He who wants to achieve anything in praxeology must be conversant with mathematics, physics, biology, history, and jurisprudence.” Hayek similarly warned that “Unless you really know your economics or whatever your special field is, you will be simply a fraud. But if you know only economics and nothing else, you will be a bane to mankind, good, perhaps, for writing articles for other economists to read, but for nothing else.”
Undoubtedly, the entire situation would look entirely different from the chaotic disruptive mess it is now if our public health officials and social scientists were trained in the mold of Mises and Hayek. Whereas both men stressed the complex and ultimately fragile nature of the social order, and therefore the need for broad understanding of this complexity, the learned ignoramus, in the words of Ortega y Gasset, “believes that civilization is there in just the same way as the earth’s crust and the forest primeval.”
Every time the “experts” demand that life be halted into the indeterminate future, they vindicate Ortega y Gasset’s observation that the learned ignoramuses are ignorant of the very nature of the social order itself and are therefore a menace to its preservation. This crisis demonstrates how prescient Ortega y Gasset’s warning was. Hopefully it is not too late to prevent a true societal catastrophe.
The coronavirus models have been so spectacularly wrong that it’s hard to believe it was just incompetence. As we move from “lockdown to flatten the curve” to “lockdown until coronavirus disappears” who and what are behind this seeming descent into madness? What about the economic collapse – was coronavirus a convenient distraction from what was already cooked into the cake?
Bill Gates doesn’t need the money, that is for sure. So what motivates him to spend billions of dollars on organizations that seek to destroy our privacy and run our lives? It is a big ego trip…or worse?
Plus – shameful arrest of a mother in Idaho and Texas Governor Abbott’s pitifully weak “recovery” plan. All in today’s Liberty Report.
While philanthropy is considered noble, some philanthropists appear to be doing far more harm than good with their donated millions. Bill Gates, who cofounded Microsoft in 1975, is perhaps one of the most dangerous philanthropists in modern history, having poured billions of dollars into global health initiatives that stand on shaky scientific and moral ground.
Gates’ answers to the problems of the world are consistently focused on building corporate profits through highly toxic methods, be it chemical agriculture and GMOs, or pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines.1 Rarely, if ever, do we find Gates promoting clean living or inexpensive holistic health strategies.
Gates Donates Billions to Private Companies
A March 17, 2020, article2 in The Nation titled, “Bill Gates’ Charity Paradox,” details “the moral hazards surrounding the Gates Foundation’s $50 billion charitable enterprise, whose sprawling activities over the last two decades have been subject to remarkably little government oversight or public scrutiny.”
As noted in this article, Gates discovered an easy way to gain political power — “one that allows unelected billionaires to shape public policy” — namely charity. Gates has described his charity strategy as “catalytic philanthropy,” one in which the “tools of capitalism” are leveraged to benefit the poor.
The only problem is that the true beneficiaries of Gates’ philanthropic endeavors tend to be those who are already rich beyond comprehension, including Gates’ own charitable foundation. The poor, on the other hand, end up with costly solutions like patented GMO seeds and vaccines that in some instances have done far more harm than good. (For a few examples, see the following references.3,4,5) The Nation reports:6
“Through an investigation of more than 19,000 charitable grants the Gates Foundation has made over the last two decades, The Nationhas uncovered close to $2 billion in tax-deductible charitable donations to private companies … which are tasked with developing new drugs, improving sanitation in the developing world, developing financial products for Muslim consumers, and spreading the good news about this work.
The Gates Foundation even gave $2 million to Participant Media to promote Davis Guggenheim’s previous documentary film ‘Waiting for Superman,‘ which pushes one of the foundation’s signature charity efforts, charter schools — privately managed public schools. This charitable donation is a small part of the $250 million the foundation has given to media companies and other groups to influence the news.
‘It’s been a quite unprecedented development, the amount that the Gates Foundation is gifting to corporations … I find that flabbergasting, frankly,’ says Linsey McGoey, a professor of sociology at the University of Essex and author of the book ‘No Such Thing as a Free Gift.’
‘They’ve created one of the most problematic precedents in the history of foundation giving by essentially opening the door for corporations to see themselves as deserving charity claimants at a time when corporate profits are at an all-time high.'”
Companies that have received large donations from the Gates Foundation include GlaxoSmithKline, Unilever, IBM, Vodafone, Scholastic Inc. and NBC Universal Media.7,8
Those Calling the Shots Stand to Gain the Most
In the video above, Spiro Skouras reviews how the global COVID-19 pandemic is being used to snatch freedom and liberty away from us, and the role Gates is playing in the process.
“We have been encouraged to sacrifice our liberty for a false sense of security, being conditioned more and more each day to rely on the state for protection and now many of us find ourselves relying on the state to pay our bills,” Skouras says.9
“Some are beginning to see that there may be more to the official story than what we are led to believe. The very few may have seen this coming and are waiting for the next phase of what very well could be another step closer to global governance.
The exact same individuals and government agencies, in addition to global institutions who stand to benefit the most, are the ones calling the shots.”
Gates, surely, fits the description of someone who is both calling the shots and stands to gain handsomely from the COVID-19 pandemic. How? First, by investing in the same industries he’s giving charitable donations to and, second, by promoting a global public health agenda that benefits the companies he’s invested in and supports.
How Gates’ Foundation Benefits From Its Own Donations
For example, in 2014, a Mastercard affiliate, MasterCard Labs for Financial Inclusion, received a $19 million donation10,11 “to ‘increase usage of digital financial products by poor adults’ in Kenya,” The Nation reports, adding:12
“The credit card giant had already articulated its keen business interest in cultivating new clients from the developing world’s 2.5 billion unbanked people, McGoey says, so why did it need a wealthy philanthropist to subsidize its work? And why are Bill and Melinda Gates getting a tax break for this donation?”
Indeed, those are sensible questions that need serious review. The Mastercard donation also appears to have benefited the Gates Foundation, making an investigation into Gates’ “philanthropy” all the more necessary.
As explained by The Nation, at the time of that donation, the Gates Foundation had “substantial financial investments in Mastercard through its holdings in Warren Buffett’s investment company, Berkshire Hathaway.”
That’s not the only questionable donation on record. The Nation found “close to $250 million in charitable grants from the Gates Foundation to companies in which the foundation holds corporate stocks and bonds.” In other words, the Gates Foundation is giving money to companies that it owns stocks in and will benefit financially from.
As a result, the Foundation and Gates himself continue to increase their wealth. Part of this growth in wealth also appears to be due to the tax breaks given for charitable donations. In short, it’s a perfect money-shuffling scheme that limits taxes while maximizing income generation.
Companies that have received donations that in turn made money for the Gates Foundation include Merck, Novartis, GlaxoSmithKline, Vodafone, Sanofi, Ericsson, LG, Medtronic, Teva and “numerous startups,” The Nation writes, adding:
“A foundation giving a charitable grant to a company that it partly owns — and stands to benefit from financially — would seem like an obvious conflict of interest …
Tax scholars like Ray Madoff, a law professor at Boston College, indicate that multibillionaires see tax savings of at least 40 percent — which, for Bill Gates, would amount to $14 billion …
Madoff, like many tax experts, stresses that these billions of dollars in tax savings have to be seen as a public subsidy — money that otherwise would have gone to the U.S. Treasury to help build bridges, do medical research, or close the funding gap at the IRS …
If Bill and Melinda Gates don’t pay their full freight in taxes, the public has to make up the difference or simply live in a world where governments do less and less (educating, vaccinating, and researching) and superrich philanthropists do more and more.
‘I think people often confuse what wealthy people are doing on their own dime and what [they’re] doing on our dime, and that’s one of the big problems about this debate,’ Madoff notes.
‘People say, ‘It’s the rich person’s money [to spend as they wish].’ But when they get significant tax benefits, it’s also our money. And so that’s why we need to have rules about how they spend our money.'”
Take Action — Demand an Investigation
If donating to for-profit companies sounds oddly illegal to you, you’d be right. Gates is a tax evader for doing so — he’s simply getting away with it. The nonprofit foundation is a disguise to avoid taxes while funding the research arms of for-profit organizations that his foundation is invested in.
In reality, Bill and Melinda Gates should be given federal prison sentences, and while not directly spelled out, I believe that’s really the point of The Nation’s article. Using nonprofit money to advance research for companies you’re invested in is illegal.
That Gates philanthropic endeavors protect his own investments can also be seen in his pro-patent stance. James Love, director of the nonprofit Knowledge Ecology International pointed out to The Nation that Gates:13
“… uses his philanthropy to advance a pro-patent agenda on pharmaceutical drugs, even in countries that are really poor … He’s undermining a lot of things that are really necessary to make drugs affordable … He gives so much money to [fight] poverty, and yet he’s the biggest obstacle on a lot of reforms.”
Gates is a staunch and longtime defender of the drug industry, and his intent to further the pharmaceutical agenda can clearly be seen in the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Gates’ COVID-19 Plan — Vaccinate Global Population
As reported by Forbes,14 The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has committed $100 million to fight the global COVID-19 outbreak. As much as $20 million will reportedly go to agencies such as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization to be used for front-line detection, containment and treatment efforts.
Another $20 million is earmarked for at-risk populations in Africa and South Asia while the remaining $60 million is to be used for vaccine development, diagnostics and other treatments.
Vaccines are clearly one of Gates’ mainstay “solutions” to most diseases. Gates has gone on record saying the U.S. needs disease surveillance and a national tracking system15 that could involve vaccine records embedded on our bodies (such as invisible ink quantum dot tattoos described in a Science Translational Medicine paper.16,17)
In fact, he’s stated that life will not go back to normal until we have the ability to vaccinate the entire global population against COVID-19. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), has echoed this exact sentiment as well, as if they’re reading the same cue card.
It would not surprise me if they were, seeing how the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation collaborates with both the NIAID and WHO “to increase coordination across the international vaccine community and create a Global Vaccine Action Plan.”18
Fauci is on Gate’s Leadership Council board charged with developing this vaccine action plan, as is WHO’s former director general Dr. Margaret Chan. As explained in a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation press release:
“The Global Vaccine Action Plan will enable greater coordination across all stakeholder groups — national governments, multilateral organizations, civil society, the private sector and philanthropic organizations — and will identify critical policy, resource, and other gaps that must be addressed to realize the life-saving potential of vaccines.”
Gates influence over global health policies has been criticized for years, yet nothing has been done to limit it. If anything, his power has only grown, and warnings that his corporate interests may undermine public health policy now appears to have come true. As reported by Politico in 2017:19
“Some billionaires are satisfied with buying themselves an island. Bill Gates got a United Nations health agency in Geneva. Over the past decade, the world’s richest man has become the World Health Organization’s second biggest donor, second only to the United States and just above the United Kingdom …
The Gates Foundation has pumped more than $2.4 billion into the WHO since 2000 … This largesse gives him outsized influence over its agenda … The result, say his critics, is that Gates’ priorities have become the WHO’s …
Some health advocates fear that because the Gates Foundation’s money comes from investments in big business, it could serve as a Trojan horse for corporate interests to undermine WHO’s role in setting standards and shaping health policies.”
Vaccinate or Become a Social Outcast?
According to statements made by Gates, societal and financial normalcy may never return to those who refuse vaccination, as the digital vaccination certificate Gates is pushing for might ultimately be required to go about your day-to-day life and business.
An April 4, 2020, article by OffGuardian comments on Gates’ March 24, 2020, interview with Chris Anderson, the curator of TED (which runs TED Talks) above:20
“Shockingly, Gates … suggests people be made to have a digital ID showing their vaccination status, and that people without this ‘digital immunity proof’ would not be allowed to travel. Such an approach would mean very big money for vaccine producers.”
“It is really tragic that the economic effects of this are very dramatic … But … bringing the economy back … that’s more of a reversible thing than bringing people back to life. So, we’re going to take the pain in the economic dimension, huge pain, in order to minimize the pain in disease and death dimension.”
As noted by OffGuardian, Gates’ statement:21
“… goes directly against the imperative to balance the benefits and costs of the screening, testing and treatment measures for each ailment — as successfully promulgated for years by, for example, the Choosing Wisely campaign — to provide the maximum benefit to individual patients and society as a whole. Even more importantly … there may be dramatically more deaths from the economic breakdown than from COVID-19 itself …
Millions could potentially die from suicide, drug abuse, lack of medical coverage or treatment, poverty and lack of food access, on top of other predictable social, medical and public-health problems stemming from the response to COVID-19.”
Gates Explains Economic Shutdown
At 33:45 in the interview, Gates goes on to reveal what appears to be a stunning insider’s insight into the current economic shutdown:
“We don’t want to have a lot of recovered people … To be clear, we’re trying — through the shut-down in the United States — to not get to 1% of the population infected … I believe we will be able to avoid that with having this economic pain.”
In other words, if we are to believe Gates, we’re sacrificing the financial stability and sanity of hundreds of millions of Americans in order to prevent the infection rate from hitting 1% of the population.
Keep in mind, the death rate for COVID-19 now appears to be on par with seasonal influenza, according to Fauci,22 so the vast majority of those infected end up recovering after mild illness, and have antibodies that should provide them with long-lasting immunity. Clearly, if you want to make money from a vaccine, you don’t want people to develop immunity naturally, and this is precisely what Gates is admitting to. As noted by OffGuardian:23
“Gates and his colleagues far prefer to create a vast, hugely expensive, new system of manufacturing and selling billions of test kits, and in parallel very quickly developing and selling billions of antivirals and vaccines.
And then, when the virus comes back again a few months later and most of the population is unexposed and therefore vulnerable, selling billions more test kits and medical interventions.”
Gates Leads Medical Tyranny Agenda
The short video above summarizes some of the points I’ve touched on in this article so far and reviews how the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation influences public health policy at the very highest levels through a vast web of personal and organizational interconnections.
Gates has a history of “predicting” global pandemics with vast numbers of deaths,24 and with his call for a tracking system to keep tabs on infected/noninfected and vaccinated/unvaccinated individuals, he’s ensuring an unimaginably profitable future for the vaccine makers he supports and makes money from via his Foundation investments.
In an April 9, 2020, Children’s Health Defense article,25 Robert F. Kennedy Jr. further details Gates’ vaccine agenda. As noted by Kennedy:
“Vaccines, for Bill Gates, are a strategic philanthropy that feed his many vaccine-related businesses (including Microsoft’s ambition to control a global vaccination ID enterprise26) and give him dictatorial control of global health policy.”
The vaccination ID enterprise Kennedy mentions refers to a program called ID2020, launched in 2019, which is designed to “leverage immunization as an opportunity to establish digital identity.”27
This digital identity system is said to carry “far-reaching implications for individuals’ access to services and livelihoods,” so to think that Gates’ call for implantable COVID-19 vaccine certificates would be limited to that alone would likely be a grave mistake.
It’s not so far-fetched to imagine a future in which your vaccine certificate simply replaces personal identifications such as your driver’s license, state ID card, Social Security card and passport. Wall Street Journal Wants Us to Pity Gates
As people are starting to see the truth, Gates’ social media accounts have been flooded with criticism, resulting in The Wall Street Journal publishing an article28 trying to raise pity for him, saying he’s being attacked by “social media mobs.” April 17, 2020, Zero Hedge commented on the PR campaign to protect Gates:29
“The Wall Street Journal’s Deepa Seetharaman wants us to know that while poor billionaire Bill Gates has ‘long been a target for online trolls’ … ‘the social-media attacks have intensified’ as the Micrrosoft co-founder and World Health Organization (WHO) benefactor has become the left’s de-facto coronavirus czar …
Perhaps the ‘conspiracy theorists’ are having a little trouble digesting the fact that Gates — whose vaccine efforts in India were blamed for a devastating non-polio acute flaccid paralysis (NPAFP) epidemic that paralyzed 490,000 children — coincidentally hosted an October, 2019 high-level ‘pandemic simulation’ in New York called Event 201 which specifically focused on coronavirus …
Combine that with Gates’ recent comments about mass vaccination and biometric identification in order to ‘open up’ the country and allow people to attend mass gatherings — an idea which Dr. Anthony Fauci said ‘has merit,’ and so-called conspiracy theorists have plenty of dots to connect.
According to the Journal, ‘social-media platforms remain fertile ground for virus-related conspiracies and online harassment, despite repeated pledges by the companies to crack down on such activity.’
So — Gates is being harassed and nobody is stopping these thought criminals with their menacing opinions. And of course, ‘bots’ are also being blamed for amplifying ‘conspiracy claims’ — since there can’t be that many real humans with bad things to say about Mr. Gates.”
Far from being a force for good, Gates appears to have chosen to use his wealth and intellect to further a distasteful social control plan to benefit his own nefarious agendas, and people all over the world are finally starting to see his true colors.
The coronavirus crisis is a false flag on a global scale. Sound evidence demonstrates that the mortality rate is similar to that of the flu — about .1% — so the “lockdown” shock is clearly unjustified. (1)
Unreliable evidence has been wrapped around a preplanned policy to destabilize and impoverish the world with these unjustifiable lockdowns.
So who benefits? If China is falsely blamed for the fabricated catastrophe, then the military industrial complex will benefit. War plans against China will be escalated, courtesy the Corona false flag.
But fabricated foreign enemies are not and will not be the only casualties. We the people are also being targeted. The pre-planned implosion of the economy will impoverish the vast majority globally, but the large corporations, the large monopolies — all bailed-out by you and me — will benefit by buying undervalued assets and bankrupted businesses. Corona will be falsely blamed for the bankrutpcies and widespread poverty.
Healthcare will also suffer. If hospitals are forced into bankruptcy(2) because they are largely empty, privateers will move in to do what they do best — privatize healthcare even further, thus making accessible healthcare even more inaccessible to the masses.
Ruling classes, the Big Monopolies, Big Money will gain from the wholesale destruction of Western economies. Assets will be cheap and bought in volume by institutions. The shock will numb the majority to realities, and more bailouts (3) will continue to flow to the very same entities that need to be de-monopolized, thus furthering the neoliberal cancer that has delivered the economic malaise and the corruption.
The public should identify the cancer and push back, but the monopolies/Big Media also own the messaging.
Neoliberal economic models do not work. They are not self-sufficient. They require bailouts and economic crashes. They breed corrupt fake “regulators” like the WHO(4) itself and the CDC. (5) This fake capitalism, which is to a large degree divorced from production, is a real cancer, a real driver for war and more war, and a real menace. It must be dismantled. Currently the opposite is happening. The shock of the fabricated crisis has us dazed, confused, desperate — exactly the scenario that predatory faux capitalists create and exploit.
The war against Western populations, and the entire globe, is a self-devouring manifestation of the failure of current neoliberal political economies. It should be identified as such and then changed, radically.
Note to readers: please click the share buttons above or below. Forward this article to your email lists. Crosspost on your blog site, internet forums. etc.
Mark Taliano is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG) and the author of Voices from Syria, Global Research Publishers, 2017. Visit the author’s website at https://www.marktaliano.net where this article was originally published.
PLANO, Texas, April 22, 2020 /Christian Newswire/ — As U.S. coronavirus cases show signs of leveling off, a renowned Christian apologist today urged the church to prepare for an avalanche of new challenges.
Following federal and state government discussions about plans to re-open parts of the nation in May, best-selling author Josh McDowell released online a document—titled “What Comes Next”—outlining challenges the church, para-church organizations and individuals will likely face in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis. He has compiled more than 1,000 hours of church research over 55 years.
Social distancing, quarantines and lockdowns—government tactics enacted to help flatten the curve against the novel coronavirus—are having an adverse effect on mental and emotional health in the church, McDowell said.
“Since before the pandemic, pornography addiction and loneliness were the top issues facing the church, and now they are exploding,” McDowell said. “Isolation caused by the COVID-19 lockdown has only exacerbated loneliness, pornography, anxiety, depression, and other mental health problems.”
As the COVID-19 death toll exceeds 42,000 Americans–more than U.S. soldiers who died in battle in the Korean War–McDowell also said, “The Church will need to be ready to address issues relating to God, and why He would allow such devastation.”
In recent weeks, McDowell has correlated the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak to his extensive 55-page research paper, titled Ten Challenges Facing the Church. It outlines crucial challenges believers must address before moving forward in their relationship with Christ over the next five years.
“Our global society has created a complex and destructive scenario and environment that all Christians face in their everyday life including within the church in every culture of the world,” explained McDowell.
McDowell predicted that in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis there will be greater interest in spiritual things–but not necessarily in the church.
“During this crisis and in all circumstances, we remain committed to pointing others to the hope found in Jesus. That’s our calling and privilege as believers, and we must make every effort to offer others hope that only He can provide.”
Josh McDowell is founder and president of Josh McDowell Ministry (A Cru Ministry). He has written or co-authored 152 books in 128 languages, including the multi-million selling More Than a Carpenter and Evidence That Demands a Verdict. Josh and his wife Dottie have been married 48 years. They have four children and ten grandchildren.