Daily Archives: August 15, 2020

A Quiz on the Doctrine of Salvation — ChurchLeaders

doctrine of salvation

How familiar are you with the doctrine of salvation? At the heart of the Christian faith is this statement: “God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

The Doctrine of Salvation

Christians are those who have been saved. But how well do you know what that means? This quiz is designed to help you find out.

If you would like to take this quiz in a paper format or to share it with a group, I have made it and the other theological quizzes available in PDF format.

Did you enjoy this quiz? If so, you may enjoy some of the other quizzes I’ve created. Click here to see them all.

This article originally appeared here.

via A Quiz on the Doctrine of Salvation — ChurchLeaders

August 15 The Great Divide

 

Luke 16:26

Between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us.

And besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed.” The gulf between Hades and Paradise is fixed—immovable. The gulf is not going to be taken away. What you do in this life fixes forever where you will spend eternity. If you reject Jesus Christ in this life, you will remain in hell forever. There is no crossing back, no second chance, no coming back and starting over.

Thankfully, the decision you make for Jesus Christ in this life fixes your eternal salvation forever as well. The point is that the gulf, the divide between heaven and hell, is a fixed divide. Therefore, whatever decision you make in this life, for or against Jesus Christ, is a decision that you will live with for eternity. No one knows what the next minute, hour, day, or year will bring. The decision you die with is the decision you will live with forever.[1]

 

[1] Jeremiah, D. (2002). Sanctuary: finding moments of refuge in the presence of God (p. 238). Nashville, TN: Integrity Publishers.

The GREAT APOSTASY: What Believers Need to Know to Keep Them Safe — Absolute Truth from the Word of God

This article was originally written a few years ago. I am bringing it out again, with some modifications, because I am noticing brothers and sisters in Christ who are still beguiled by False Teachings and cults masquerading as Christianity.

Original Article:

In these last days, Jesus warned of false teachers and to beware of them.We are seeing this unfolding before our eyes. But sometimes (as the devil does so well) it sounds believable and before long, many of us are pulled into heretical teaching.  Our Lord wants to keep us safe from False Teachers. His Word is there for us for this purpose.

I was reading Acts 17 and of course came upon this passage of Scripture:

“These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so”  (Acts 17:11).

Acts 17:11 is preached to this day to impart to God’s people a most important Truth. The Bereans had heard Paul and Silas preach to them. The Word says that these Berean Jews received the word with all readiness; but what did they do after hearing that which was preached to them?

They searched the Scriptures to verify what they had heard.

Many people today do not rely on the Word of God for Truth.  Unfortunately, they rely on the teachings of men, some of which are Biblically sound, but others have twisted the Word of God to accommodate the “Itching Ear” crowd who want to be made comfortable in church.

 “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers;  and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables” (2 Timothy 4:3-4)

“that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting”  (Ephesians 4:14).

Did you know that those who are trained to spot counterfeit money spend the majority of their time studying authentic bills?  It’s true.  They can immediately spot the counterfeit because the authentic is ingrained in their brains.

And so are believers in Christ told  to study the Word of God in order to reject apostasy:

“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth”  (2 Timothy 2:15).

It’s a Spiritual Minefield Out There

What is Apostasy?

Apostasy, from the Greek word apostasia, means “a defiance of an established system or authority; a rebellion; an abandonment or breach of faith.”  This clearly shows that there is “Truth” from the Word of God; but there is also a rebellion or defiance against God’s Word.

I have seen Bible teachers of late telling their flocks that “Aspostasia” means the Rapture of the church in 2 Thessalonians 2. This is clearly errant teaching, although I do not say that these teachers are doing this in a malicious manner.

This is why we should be like the Bereans -receiving teaching with gladness BUT searching the Scriptures to see if what we were told is true.

In the Greek, Apostasia always refers to a departure from a belief system; in other words a falling away from faith in the Word of God. It has never meant a “spacial departure” which many are teaching in saying this is the Rapture of the Church.

Excerpt from gotquestions.org:

“Question: “Will there be a great apostasy / falling away during the end times?”

Answer: The Bible indicates that there will be a great apostasy during the end times. The “great apostasy” is mentioned in 2 Thessalonians 2:3. The KJV calls it the “falling away,” while the NIV and ESV call it “the rebellion.” And that’s what an apostasy is: a rebellion, an abandonment of the truth. The end times will include a wholesale rejection of God’s revelation, a further “falling away” of an already fallen world.” source

Brethren, the definition of Apostasy (Apostasia) could not be more clear!

Deception of the Brethren

I receive many emails each week from the readers of my articles. It shocks and saddens me that so many are caught up in false teaching, cults and even in a “New Age” version of Christianity.

This is not true of  the majority of those who write to me. Most are very grounded in the Word and are ‘Born Again’ believers.  But the readers who do communicate with me who have become ensnared in false doctrine is very troubling.

I see this on Facebook when I publish a new article. There will always be those who find fault with my words because what I say exposes the false doctrine which they believe.

I want the reader to understand that I am very open to being corrected by the brethren – but the Word of God must reign supreme over “opinions” of men and women.

So, let’s get right into the snares and traps of False teaching.

Hebrew Roots  (HRM)

Being an ethnic Jew who came to faith in Christ so many years ago, I am very familiar with this cult.  And yes – I did say CULT.

Satan’s traps, lies and snares are everywhere, but Hebrew Roots is especially egregious to the Lord.  We know that we are saved by Grace through faith. It is the New Covenant of Grace – the better Covenant which brings life to those who believe in the finished work of Christ on the Cross; and His resurrection from the dead. When we truly believe “on” the Lord Jesus Christ (placing our faith in Him alone for the forgiveness of our sins by His shed blood), and understand that this is what saves us; we are able to discern false teaching.

Through the years, I have met many Christians who are taken with the knowledge that I am an ethnic Jew. I have spoken with many who actually research their lineage to find out if they have any amount of Jewish blood.

I have often told them that being grafted into the vine is simply the way that the Lord has made it possible for them to enter the Kingdom of God. But somewhere along the line, they have been confronted by those of the Hebrew Roots Cult.

To simplify the errant teaching of this cult, I have chosen to  take the main beliefs and format them in a bulleted list. I do hope that many of the brethren will print out this article and keep it for reference.

HRM believes:

  • The Church has veered far from the true teaching and Hebrew concepts of the Bible
  • That Christianity has been indoctrinated with cultures and beliefs of paganism
  • Christ’s death did not end the Mosaic Law, but renewed it
  • Understanding of the NT can only come from a Hebrew perspective
  • The teachings of Paul are not understood or taught correctly
  • The believers should walk in Torah-observance to please God
  • The dietary laws and all celebrations of the feasts of Israel should be observed by all believers

I must insert something very important for the reader. I am in no way saying that Christians who feel led to study the history and customs of the Jewish people, and even take part in many of these, should not do this. But they must understand that observing these traditions of Judaism is not part of Salvation.  This is a lie from the pit of hell. The teachings of HRM are no different from those of the Judaizers of Jesus’ day, with one exception:

Most all of the HRM leadership and followers and NOT Jews.

I have noticed that most so-called Hebrew Roots churches are not only filled with non-Jews, but the “Rabbi” over the people is not even ethnically Jewish himself! (Most of the congregations are not aware of this).

From gotquestions.org   (On HRM)

The influence of this movement is working its way into our churches and seminaries. It’s dangerous in its implication that keeping the Old Covenant law is walking a “higher path” and is the only way to please God and receive His blessings. Nowhere in the Bible do we find Gentile believers being instructed to follow Levitical laws or Jewish customs; in fact, the opposite is taught. Romans 7:6 says, “But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.” Christ, in keeping perfectly every ordinance of the Mosaic Law, completely fulfilled it. Just as making the final payment on a home fulfills that contract and ends one’s obligation to it, so also Christ has made the final payment and has fulfilled the law, bringing it to an end for us all. source

The NAR Movement (New Apostolic Reformation and Dominion Theology)

We are warned by Jesus not to add or take away from His Holy Word. Perhaps the NAR Movement and Dominionists misread the Words of our Lord.  These movements thrive on extra-Biblical revelation.  The dangers of these teachings are beyond what we can even imagine.

This movement is spanning the globe at an alarming rate.

As I did with HRM, I will format this as bullet points to simplify:

  • They will not refer to themselves as NAR or Dominionists
  • The have restored the offices of Apostles and Prophets from the OT
  • The leadership is comprised of the “New” Apostles and Prophets chosen by men
  • They teach that Christians MUST be involved in politics
  • They teach that God has restored the offices of Apostle and Prophets over the last 30-40 years
  • Members of this movement must obey the words of the so-called Apostles and Prophets
  • As more and more members unify behind the leaders – these leaders will be given supernatural powers of mass healings and suspend the laws of physics.
  • Great wealth will come to the new Apostles and this will enable the church to establish God’s Kingdom on earth (Dominionism)
  • Belief in Grave Soaking (lying on top of a grave of a well-known Christian in hopes that knowledge will be imparted to them.
  • Gold dust coming down on the congregation during worship (people believing this came from heaven.

Discerning Christians will see clearly that this is a cult. It does not even resemble Christianity from the Bible.  Nevertheless, the followers of this cult are in the millions and growing every day.

Many Personal Stories of leaving the NAR Cult    <click to read

Jan Markell did a two part series on her radio program which exposed an even more nefarious side of NAR.

Wolves Not Sparing the Flock Part 1

Wolves Not sparing the Flock Part 2

A question for the reader:  Does any of this about NAR, Dominion Theology and HRM line up with the Word of God?    (rhetorical question!)

This is the first of a series of articles which I hope to write concerning cults and false teaching.

I will cover the “Social Justice Gospel”  in my next article along with other Apostasy movements.

Brethren, I hope that this article will help someone to make the decision to leave if they are involved with these false movements.  I also hope that this might help a family who has a member caught up in HRM, NAR or Dominion Theology.

Remember:  Times change but the Word of God NEVER changes.

Beware of extra-Biblical teaching and so-called revelations.

God is God and we are NOT!

How Can I Be Saved?

Shalom b’Yeshua

MARANATHA!

via The GREAT APOSTASY: What Believers Need to Know to Keep Them Safe — Absolute Truth from the Word of God

August 15th The D. L. Moody Year Book

 

These things have I spoken unto you, that My joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.—John 15:11.

PEOPLE should look for joy in the Word, and not in the world. They should look for the joy which the Scriptures furnish, and then go to work in the vineyard; because a joy that don’t send me out to some one else, a joy that don’t impel me to go and help the poor drunkard, a joy that don’t prompt me to visit the widow and the fatherless, a joy that don’t cause me to go into the Mission Sunday-school or other Christian work, is not worth having, and is not from above. A joy that does not constrain me to go and work for the Master, is purely sentiment and not real joy.[1]

 

[1] Moody, D. L. (1900). The D. L. Moody Year Book: A Living Daily Message from the Words of D. L. Moody. (E. M. Fitt, Ed.) (pp. 140–141). East Northfield, MA: The Bookstore.

Hijacking the GOSPEL OF CHRIST: Social Justice False Gospel and How the World Embraces It — Absolute Truth from the Word of God

Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit”; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.  Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.” But now you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil.

 Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin. (James 4:13-17).

Rachel Held Evans: Leader of the Social Justice gospel dead at 37:

When I read that Ms. Evans had passed away, all I could think of was whether, at the very end, she realized that she had not been speaking the truth of the Word of God to her millions of followers. I pray that she realized this, and that she called out to our Lord in godly repentance at the very end.

Only God knows what happened in the heart of this very young woman before she died.  I have written articles about her and the so-called “Social Justice gospel (SJG).”  I am a writer of truth and I felt that it was of utmost importance to speak against this movement which is as anti-Christian as a movement can be.

The Lost World and the Social Justice gospel

I have been reading that the world is embracing the SJG as the “true” Christians, and see us (the remnant) as “haters.”  You see, they will only see God as Love, which He truly is. But they either do not know or they choose to push aside His other attributes: Holy, Righteous and Just.

The SJG cherry-picks the Scriptures which support their doctrines. You will never hear a leader in the SJG movement speak of how homosexuality is an abomination to our God. They also fully support abortion and march with those who scream about a woman’s right to “choose.”  They are on board with transgenderism. These people are also ardent Climate Change supporters.

And let’s not forget that those in the SJG movement are mostly Socialists.

Here is an article I wrote about Ms. Evans and the SJG last year:

“As Satan Comes Disguised as an Angel of Light – Pretty as a Picture Yet Slippery as a Snake.”

From washingtonexaminer.com

Progressive Christian author Rachel Held Evans, who challenged evangelicals on Trump, dead at 37

Progressive Christian author Rachel Held Evans, who served on an advisory council for faith-based and neighborhood partnerships for President Barack Obama, died Saturday at the age of 37.

Evans, the bestselling author of A Year of Biblical WomanhoodInspired: Slaying Giants, Walking on Water, and Loving the Bible Again, and Searching for Sunday, was known for her clashes with evangelical Christians. An Episcopalian, she advocated for women in church leadership and the inclusion of LGBT members and against evangelical support of President Trump, among other hot-button issues.

The Dayton, Tenn., resident was hospitalized in April for what she described on Twitter as a combination of the flu and a urinary tract infection along with an allergic reaction to antibiotics she had been given.

Following her admittance to the hospital, she developed seizures and was placed in a medically-induced coma. When doctors tried to bring her off the coma medication, her brain swelled, causing damage her husband described as “not survivable” in an update to a blog post detailing her health struggles.

Her husband, Daniel Evans, with whom she had two children, announced her death on her website.

“This entire experience is surreal. I keep hoping it’s a nightmare from which I’ll awake. I feel like I’m telling someone else’s story,” her husband wrote. “I cannot express how much the support means to me and our kids. To everyone who has prayed, called, texted, driven, flown, given of themselves physically and financially to help ease this burden: Thank you. We are privileged. Rachel’s presence in this world was a gift to us all and her work will long survive her.” source

The real tragedy here is that the work of which her surviving spouse speaks was False teaching.  God will NOT be mocked. And I think that this should be a wake up call to anyone who changes, twists or rewrites God’s Holy Word.

Pray for Rachel’s family. Pray for her millions of followers.

PRAY that the Lord will send true believers into many of their lives and their eyes will be opened to the Truth of the GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST!

How Can I Be Saved?

Shalom b’Yeshua

MARANATHA!

via Hijacking the GOSPEL OF CHRIST: Social Justice False Gospel and How the World Embraces It — Absolute Truth from the Word of God

August 15, 2020 Evening Verse Of The Day

4. Reader, it is very true that Jehovah, in his threefold character of person, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, seeth and knoweth all the concerns of his redeemed, and his eyes are upon them for good. But is there not here a special reference to the eyes of the Mediator? Is it not Jesus as the God-man, who is here spoken of as beholding his people? For here, with a double sweetness of consolation, the people of God may find encouragement in the blessed thought, that the eyes of Jesus, as God in our nature, are always beholding and taking part in all the interests of his redeemed.[1]


Ver. 4.—The Lord is in his holy temple. David’s reply to his timid advisers is an expression of absolute faith and trust in God. Saul may reign upon earth; but Jehovah is in his holy temple (or rather, “palace,” הֵיכַל) on high—his throne is in heaven, where he sits and reigns. What need, then, to fear an earthly king? Especially when God is not inattentive to human affairs, but his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men (comp. Pss. 7:9; 17:3; 139:1). His “eyelids” are said to try men, because, when we closely scrutinize a thing, we drop our eyelids and half close our eyes.[2]


4. Jehovah is in the palace of his holiness. In what follows, the Psalmist glories in the assurance of the favour of God, of which I have spoken. Being destitute of human aid, he betakes himself to the providence of God. It is a signal proof of faith, as I have observed elsewhere, to take and to borrow, so to speak, light from heaven to guide us to the hope of salvation, when we are surrounded in this world with darkness on every side. All men acknowledge that the world is governed by the providence of God; but when there comes some sad confusion of things, which disturbs their ease, and involves them in difficulty, there are few who retain in their minds the firm persuasion of this truth. But from the example of David, we ought to make such account of the providence of God as to hope for a remedy from his judgment, even when matters are in the most desperate condition. There is in the words an implied contrast between heaven and earth; for if David’s attention had been fixed on the state of things in this world, as they appeared to the eye of sense and reason, he would have seen no prospect of deliverance from his present perilous circumstances. But this was not David’s exercise; on the contrary, when in the world all justice lies trodden under foot, and faithfulness has perished, he reflects that God sits in heaven perfect and unchanged, from whom it became him to look for the restoration of order from this state of miserable confusion. He does not simply say that God dwells in heaven; but that he reigns there, as it were, in a royal palace, and has his throne of judgment there. Nor do we indeed render to him the honour which is his due, unless we are fully persuaded that his judgment-seat is a sacred sanctuary for all who are in affliction and unrighteously oppressed. When, therefore, deceit, craft, treachery, cruelty, violence, and extortion, reign in the world; in short, when all things are thrown into disorder and darkness by injustice and wickedness, let faith serve as a lamp to enable us to behold God’s heavenly throne, and let that sight suffice to make us wait in patience for the restoration of things to a better state. The temple of his holiness, or his holy temple, which is commonly taken for Sion, doubtless here signifies heaven; and that it does so is clearly shown by the repetition in the next clause, Jehovah has his throne in heaven; for it is certain David expresses the same thing twice.

His eyes behold. Here he infers, from the preceding sentence, that nothing is hidden from God, and that, therefore, men will be obliged to render up to him an account of all that they have done. If God reigns in heaven, and if his throne is erected there, it follows that he must necessarily attend to the affairs of men, in order one day to sit in judgment upon them. Epicurus, and such like him as would persuade themselves that God is idle, and indulges in repose in heaven, may be said rather to spread for him a couch on which to sleep, than to erect for him a throne of judgment. But it is the glory of our faith that God, the Creator of the world, does not disregard or abandon the order which he himself at first established. And when he suspends his judgments for a time, it becomes us to lean upon this one truth—that he beholds from heaven; just as we now see David contenting himself with this consolatory consideration alone, that God rules over mankind, and observes whatever is transacted in the world, although his knowledge, and the exercise of his jurisdiction, are not at first sight apparent. [3]


Verse 4.—The infinite understanding of God doth exactly know the sins of men; he knows so as to consider. He doth not only know them, but intently behold them: “His eyelids try the children of men,” a metaphor taken from men, that contract the eyelids when they would wistly and accurately behold a thing: it is not a transient and careless look.—Stephen Charnock.

Verse 4.—“His eyes behold,” etc. God searcheth not as man searcheth, by enquiring into that which before was hid from him; his searching is no more but his beholding; he seeth the heart, he beholdeth the reins; God’s very sight is searching. Heb. 4:13. “All things are naked and opened unto his eyes,” τετραχηλισμένα, dissected or anatomised. He hath at once as exact a view of the most hidden things, the very entrails of the soul, as if they had been with never so great curiosity anatomised before him.—Richard Alleine, 1611–1681.

Verse 4.—“His eyes behold,” etc. Consider that God not only sees into all you do, but he sees it to that very end that he may examine and search into it. He doth not only behold you with a common and indifferent look, but with a searching, watchful, and inquisitive eye: he pries into the reasons, the motives, the ends of all your actions. “The Lord’s throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men.” Rev. 1:14, where Christ is described, it is said, his eyes are as a flame of fire: you know the property of fire is to search and make trial of those things which are exposed unto it, and to separate the dross from the pure metal: so, God’s eye is like fire, to try and examine the actions of men: he knows and discerns how much your very purest duties have in them of mixture, and base ends of formality, hypocrisy, distractedness, and deadness: he sees through all your specious pretences, that which you cast as a mist before the eyes of men when yet thou art but a juggler in religion: all your tricks and sleights of outward profession, all those things that you use to cozen and delude men withal, cannot possibly impose upon him: he is a God that can look through all those fig-leaves of outward profession, and discern the nakedness of your duties through them.—Ezekiel Hopkins, D.D.

Verse 4.—“His eyes behold,” etc. Take God into thy counsel. Heaven overlooks hell. God at any time can tell thee what plots are hatching there against thee.—William Gurnall.

Verse 4.—“His eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men.” When an offender, or one accused for any offence, is brought before a judge, and stands at the bar to be arraigned, the judge looks upon him, eyes him, sets his eye upon him, and he bids the offender look up in his face; “Look upon me,” saith the judge, “and speak up:” guiltiness usually clouds the forehead and clothes the brow; the weight of guilt holds down the head! the evil doer hath an ill look, or dares not look up; how glad is he if the judge looks off him. We have such an expression here, speaking of the Lord, the great Judge of heaven and earth: “His eyelids try the children of men,” as a judge tries a guilty person with his eye and reads the characters of his wickedness printed in his face. Hence we have a common speech in our language, such a one looks suspiciously, or, he hath a guilty look. At that great gaol-delivery described in Rev. 6:16, All the prisoners cry out to be hid from the face of him that sat upon the throne. They could not look upon Christ, and they could not endure Christ should look on them; the eyelids of Christ try the children of men.… Wickedness cannot endure to be under the observation of any eye, much less of the eye of justice. Hence the actors of it say, “Who seeth us?” It is very hard not to show the guilt of the heart in the face, and it is as hard to have it seen there.—Joseph Caryl.[4]


11:4. David contrasted the problem on earth with the exalted position of the Lord in heaven. “What can the righteous do?” the fainthearted had asked (v. 3). David responded that the righteous can trust in the real Source of secure government—the Lord, whose throne is exalted in the heavens, His holy temple, far from the dissimulation of the wicked. Because the Lord is sovereignly ruling over the earth, He sees and thoroughly investigates the activities of the sons of men (cf. 33:13–14). He observes is literally, “His eyes see,” and His eyes is literally, “His eyelids.” Eyelids normally contract when examining closely. This bold anthropomorphism stresses the precise omniscience of God.[5]


11:4 his holy temple. This is more likely God’s heavenly palace (his throne is in heaven) than his earthly temple, although one must not press the distinction too far: in the OT, the earthly sanctuary is the doorway into the heavenly (as in Isa. 6:1), and thus, in worship, God’s people join the heavenly choir.

11:4 The Lord’s holiness and power, which are supremely revealed in Christ, guarantee an answer to the distress of his people.[6]


11:4 Yahweh is in his holy temple The earthly temple was a representation of Yahweh’s heavenly temple. The psalmist looks to the temple as the place of Yahweh’s dwelling and a symbol of Yahweh’s sovereignty over all the earth (Hab 2:20).

Yahweh is in the heavens on his throne Symbolizing God’s authority. See Ps 9:7 and note.

His eyelids see While the wicked seek to hide their actions in the dark, Yahweh sees all from His heavenly throne.[7]


[1] Hawker, R. (2013). Poor Man’s Old Testament Commentary: Job–Psalms (Vol. 4, p. 195). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

[2] Spence-Jones, H. D. M. (Ed.). (1909). Psalms (Vol. 1, p. 71). London; New York: Funk & Wagnalls Company.

[3] Calvin, J., & Anderson, J. (2010). Commentary on the Book of Psalms (Vol. 1, pp. 163–165). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

[4] Spurgeon, C. H. (n.d.). The treasury of David: Psalms 1-26 (Vol. 1, pp. 137–138). London; Edinburgh; New York: Marshall Brothers.

[5] Ross, A. P. (1985). Psalms. In J. F. Walvoord & R. B. Zuck (Eds.), The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures (Vol. 1, p. 800). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.

[6] Crossway Bibles. (2008). The ESV Study Bible (p. 952). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

[7] Barry, J. D., Mangum, D., Brown, D. R., Heiser, M. S., Custis, M., Ritzema, E., … Bomar, D. (2012, 2016). Faithlife Study Bible (Ps 11:4). Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

Jim Wallis replaced as Sojourners editor after controversy over article on Catholic racism — Christian Research Network

I’ve warned many times that Jim Wallis is one of the most dangerous wolves in Progressive (Social Justice) “Christianity.” Wallis wears many hats, including minister.  He’s the founder and (was) the editor of the uber liberal/socialist Sojourners Magazine. Wallis has authored many books, he’s a sought after speaker and an activist.  At one time Rev. Wallis was former president Barack Obama’s “spiritual advisor.”  That alone speaks volumes.  Wallis abandoned the biblical gospel for the “social gospel” long ago.  He insists he’s a Christian and believes he’s on a mission from God to assist the poor and oppressed to bring forth the Kingdom of God on earth. Keeping Jim Wallis’ background in mind, read Aysha Khan’s piece over at RNS (a site we do not endorse). Khan writes:

The progressive Christian magazine Sojourners has replaced founder and President Jim Wallis as editor in chief and announced a new policy of editorial independence from the organization’s advocacy work.

The decision came after weeks of turmoil over Wallis’ removal of an essay criticizing white supremacists within the Catholic Church, which led two staffers of color to resign from the magazine.

Wallis, a prominent progressive theologian and activist who has also written for RNS, will continue to serve as president of the Sojourners organization, the magazine announced Friday afternoon (Aug. 14). He had served as a leader at the magazine since its founding in 1971 as the Post-American.   View article →

If there’s no link, click on the headline to read the article.

Research

Jim Wallis

Roman Catholicism

via Jim Wallis replaced as Sojourners editor after controversy over article on Catholic racism — Christian Research Network

August—15 The Poor Man’s Evening Portion

 

Iniquities prevail against me: as for our transgressions, thou shalt purge them away.—Psalm 65:3.

My soul! ponder over this important verse; it is but short, but it is full of precious things. Blessed the soul that can, from his heart, make use of what is here said as his own experience! He hath learned much of Christ that can do so. In a time when a sense of sin abounds, when comforts run low, and the rebellion of indwelling corruption riseth high; when the enemy cometh in like a flood, and no answers return from the sanctuary; yea, when the very spirit of prayer fails, and the heaven that is over the head is as brass, and the earth that is under the feet is as iron; then to rest simply upon Christ, and I to say, “Iniquities prevail against me;” I feel the dreadful consequences of a fallen state: but all those transgressions Jesus will “purge them away;” though the Canaanites are yet in the land, my almighty Joshua will, by little and little, drive them out before me, until they are utterly destroyed: to say these things, and to know them, and, by a firm reliance on Jesus, to depend upon the accomplishment of them, is faith in lively exercise indeed! This is to rest on God the Father’s covenant engagement, and Jesus’s person and righteousness only; and at a time when, of all others, perhaps faith is hard put to it to call Christ our own. Oh! the blessedness of this state of the soul, when a sense of prevailing iniquities, instead of damping the actings of faith, becomes a stimulus to lead to Jesus, and to call in his powerful hand to restrain, when a man is driven out of himself, to lay hold on the blessed Jesus! My soul! hast thou thus far advanced in the school of grace? Happy, happy indeed, if a daily sense of thy nothingness tends more and more to endear the Lord’s all-sufficiency! And blessed will be the final issue of that divine teaching which brings thee at last most low and humble at the feet of Jesus, content to be nothing, yea, worse than nothing, that Jesus may have all the glory, who is alone worthy of it, in the salvation of his people.[1]

 

[1] Hawker, R. (1845). The Poor Man’s Evening Portion (A New Edition, pp. 242–243). Philadelphia: Thomas Wardle.

15 Aug 2020 – Rapture Ready News

California Orders First Rolling Blackouts Since 2001 Crisis
California utilities are carrying out rolling blackouts across the state for the first time since the 2001 U.S. energy crisis as a prolonged and extreme heat wave threatens to blanket much of the state through the middle of next week.

China’s flood season leaves 219 fatalities, more than 4 million evacuated and 63 million affected
Severe flooding from this year’s rainy season in China has left a total of 219 fatalities and more than 63 million people affected, the Ministry of Emergency Management (MEM) said in a press conference on Thursday, August 13, 2020. Over the past two months, more than four million have been evacuated amid historically heavy rains, with further deluge expected to continue in the weeks ahead.

Unusual triple comet flies past the Sun
The Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) spotted an unusual object identified as a triple comet flying past the Sun in early August. Although the satellite captures comets all the time– most of which are Kreutz sungrazers– the particular object is not a member of the said family, making it a rare find.

Brazil gripped by historic August cold, another round of cold blast to hit next week
Residents in Brazil are grappling with historically cold August, resulting in intense frost sweeping through many areas in Santa Catarina. Another round of extreme cold blast is set to hit next week, affecting a large portion of the southern region.

Lake Fire explodes to more than 4 450 ha (11 000 acres) in just 2 days, California
A wildfire sparked at the Angeles National Forest in California at around 22:38 UTC (15:38 LT) on Wednesday, August 12, 2020, has spread to 4 450 ha (11 000 acres) by 22:45 UTC on August 13 and is only 5 percent contained.

Two Kids with Lemonade Stand Robbed at Gunpoint, Police Say. Neighbors Band Together To Help
On Aug. 7, Jude Peterson was selling lemonade with a friend in Peoria, Illinois. It was a regular Friday for them, as they’d spent Fridays during the summer selling lemonade on a street corner.

The New Zealand Story: First They Take Your Guns – Then They Set Up Mandatory Coronavirus Quarantine Camps
In March 2019 New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern passed gun-grabbing legislation following a mass shooting at Christchurch mosque.

One Day After Trump Announces ‘Abraham Accord’ Emmanuel Macron Gives Himself A Seat At The Middle East Table Making A League With Russia
The article we did yesterday on Trump’s ‘Abraham Accord‘ announcement ended with these words “Now let’s see how Macron will fit into all of this, that will be the truly fascinating part.” Well, we sure didn’t have to wait very long. Emmanuel Macron broke out of the gate this afternoon absolutely roaring like the end times lion that he is, making a league with Russia in the Middle East, and inserting himself right into the middle of the Abraham Accord. Yep, like a rat drawn irresistibly to the cheese. We see you, Macron, boy do we ever.

BREAKING: Oregon State Police abandon Portland after local left-wing D.A. refuses to pursue criminal charges against rioters who attack law enforcement
BREAKING: Portland, Oregon now stands on the verge of collapse into total lawlessness and anarchy, all by design, as Oregon State Police are pulling out of the city following the decision of the local district attorney to drop nearly all charges against rioters who violently assault law enforcement officials.

Mystery Masks from China Arrive At Florida Addresses — Unsolicited
Some residents in the Tampa Bay area have been receiving unsolicited masks from China at their homes.

Minneapolis Forcing Owners of Destroyed Businesses to Pay Full 2020 Property Tax Before Rebuilding
After being robbed by looters, Minneapolis’ business owners are now finding themselves extorted by the city itself.

Since The COVID Pandemic Began, Tech Billionaires Saw Their Wealth Skyrocket As 40 Million Americans Forced On Unemployment, Food Lines
While lines at food pantries across America stretched out over a mile long, America’s tech titans were piling up their cash reserves at rates nearly unimaginable to the average person. While some of you received a COVID ‘stimulus check’ for $1,200, people like Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk got the much larger slice of that 2 trillion dollar pie.

Court Grants Mother Full Say in Transitioning 8-Year-Old Son to Girl
A Dallas judge ruled Tuesday that the mother of an eight-year-old boy may have sole decision-making power in pursuit of “transitioning” him to a girl named “Luna.”

BREAKING: Oregon State Police abandon Portland after local left-wing D.A. refuses to pursue criminal charges against rioters who attack law enforcement 
BREAKING: Portland, Oregon now stands on the verge of collapse into total lawlessness and anarchy, all by design, as Oregon State Police are pulling out of the city following the decision of the local district attorney to drop nearly all charges against rioters who violently assault law enforcement officials.

Source: 15 Aug 2020

Alan Dershowitz to Newsmax TV: Durham at Tip of Deep Iceberg

The news of a plea deal coming from former FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith is not the iceberg, it is just the tip of it, and it likely runs deep, according to legal expert Alan Dershowitz on Newsmax TV.

Source: Alan Dershowitz to Newsmax TV: Durham at Tip of Deep Iceberg

Durham builds case against Obama DOJ: ‘This is how you work your way up the ladder’

President Trump and legal scholars say the first prosecution from U.S. Attorney John Durham’s review of the Russian collusion probe has set the stage for more dramatic revelations, though the guilty plea in the first case didn’t add much to what was already known about the Obama administration’s Justice Department. …

Source: Durham builds case against Obama DOJ: ‘This is how you work your way up the ladder’

Metaxas: Christians beware of left’s attack on Western values

Renowned Christian author Eric Metaxas says that with all the rioting, COVID-19 measures and leftist political attacks on everything rooted in biblical principles, Christians have every reason to be alarmed.

Source: Metaxas: Christians beware of left’s attack on Western values

FBI Lied To FISA Court After Concealing Carter Page’s CIA Work: Clinesmith Charging Docs | ZeroHedge News

The FBI was aware that Carter Page was a CIA asset months before the agency concealed that fact from the FISA court, which granted permission to spy on the former Trump campaign aide.

After withholding this information during the application and two subsequent renewals, top FBI attorney Kevin Clinesmith altered documents to specifically say Page wasn’t a CIA source during a third warrant renewal, according to a 5-age federal charging document reviewed by The Federalist.

Clinesmith agreed to plead guilty to altering an email which helped justify surveillance of Page to specifically deny that Page was an “operational contact” for the CIA – helping the agency investigate suspected Russian intelligence figures for five years.

The world learned of Clinesmith’s crime after Inspector General Michael Horowitz issued a criminal referral following his 434-page report on FBI malfeasance during and after the 2016 US election.

As The Federalist notes, the MSM was hard at work spinning Clinesmith’s guilty plea to suggest that there was “no evidence of a broad anti-Trump conspiracy among law enforcement officials.”

Au contraire…

In fact, contrary to the unsubstantiated assertion from the Times, the charging documents highlight that all four of the applications to spy on Carter Page painted a false picture of the Trump affiliate. While the fourth application included outright falsified evidence regarding Page helping the CIA during the relevant time period, the other three withheld that information even though it was known to the Crossfire Hurricane team within days of opening an investigation on the Trump campaign and months before the first application to spy on Carter Page was granted. –The Federalist

And so, while the Times tries to suggest that Clinesmith was some sort of rogue employee who took it upon himself to ensure the FBI got their spy warrants, IG Horowitz’s report reveals that this framing is absurd.

“We found that, although this information [of Page’s cooperation with the CIA] was highly relevant to the FISA application, the Crossfire Hurricane team did not engage with the other agency regarding this information,” wrote Horowitz, adding that the “factual basis supporting probable cause” to spy on Page relied upon Page’s contacts with known Russian intelligence officers – which he conducted from under the umbrella of the CIA.

The other key evidence the FBI used to support their warrant applications is the debunked Steele dossier, which the Federalist describes as “a collection of drunken brainstorming and unsubstantiated gossip that was used as part of an anti-Trump operation of the Hillary Clinton campaign.”

In other words, the FBI had nothing on Page so they simply lied.

Page, a Naval Academy graduate who was accused in the media of sedition against his country, had candidly discussed those contacts with an FBI asset and the CIA had told the Crossfire Hurricane team that on August 17, 2016. Horowitz listed this failure to inform the spy court of these facts that undermined their probable cause claim as the first of 17 major omissions and errors that corrupted the FBI’s spying on the Trump campaign.

The Justice Department already admitted that two of the application renewals were illicit. Informed observers speculate the first application and first renewal to spy on the Trump ally may suffer the same fate. Durham’s charging document, along with the exhaustive IG report, show that Clinesmith’s deception was part of a broader conspiracy against Page. –The Federalist

Beyond Clinesmith

Also noted by The Federalist is the fact that Horowitz highlighted the errors of many other agents – including “Case Agent 1,” which is believed to be agent Steven Somma.

“When Case Agent 1 was explicitly asked in late September 2016 by the Attorney assisting on the FISA application about Page’s prior relationship with this other agency, Case Agent 1 did not accurately describe the nature and extent of the information the FBI received from the other agency,” wrote Horowitz.

“Case Agent 1 was primarily responsible for some of the most significant errors and omissions in the FISA applications,” the IG report continues – noting Somma’s mischaracterization of Steele’s prior reporting as credible – as well as omitting the fact that Steele’s claim of a “well-developed conspiracy of cooperation between Trump and Russia” were contradicted by statements made by another former Trump campaign aide, George Papadopoulos. Somma also excluded the fact that Steele’s claim that Page met with Russian businessman Igor Sechin and Russian official Igor Divyekin were disputed.

Read the rest of the report here.

Source: FBI Lied To FISA Court After Concealing Carter Page’s CIA Work: Clinesmith Charging Docs

August 15 Life-Changing Moments With God

 

The God of peace … make you complete in every good work to do His will.

You call me to be complete, be of good comfort, be of one mind, to live in peace; and You, the God of love and peace, are with me.

By grace I have been saved through faith, and that not of myself; it is Your gift to me, Lord God, not of works, lest I should boast. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from You who are the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.

I work out my own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is You, Lord God, who works in me both to will and to do for Your good pleasure. I can be transformed by the renewing of my mind, that I may prove what is Your good and acceptable and perfect will. May I be filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to Your glory and praise, Lord God.

Not that I am sufficient of myself to think of anything as being from me, but my sufficiency is from God.

Lord, fill me with Your grace so You can use me in Your kingdom.

Hebrews 13:20–21; 2 Corinthians 13:11; Ephesians 2:8–9; James 1:17; Philippians 2:12–13; Romans 12:2; Philippians 1:11; 2 Corinthians 3:5[1]

 

[1] Jeremiah, D. (2007). Life-Changing Moments With God (p. 246). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

California Governor Rewrites Church Law — BCNN1 – Black Christian News Network

FILE PHOTO: California governor Gavin Newsom speaks at a news conference in San Diego, California, U.S. October 9, 2019. REUTERS/ Mike Blake

The first five books of the Bible, often referred to as the Pentateuch, Torah or the law, established the rituals, practices and religious laws that ancient Jews were required to follow. The laws and instructions written there prescribed how the temple must be maintained and cleaned, how the priests should function and a myriad of other practices in Israel’s religious life.

Many of those laws and instructions continue to form the basis of modern Christian and Jewish religious practices.

But California Gov. Gavin Newsom has decided that God’s Word is not enough to govern churches and synagogues. Instead, Gov. Newsom has moved from appointing himself king, to now declaring himself to be godlike in his ability to dictate religious practices.

On July 6, in the 14-page California Public Health Order entitled “COVID-19 Industry Guidance: Places of Worship and Providers of Religious Services and Cultural Ceremonies,” Newsom demands that places of worship replace their own religious practices with his edicts.

The long list of dictates for places of worship includes:

—The removal of Bibles and pamphlets.

—The removal or disuse of sacred fonts, baptismals and vessels.

—Instructions on how to wash religious garments.

—Directions on how ministers must wash and prepare themselves.

—The required reconfiguration of podiums, lecterns, sanctuaries and even church parking lots.

—How collection plates must be used, if allowed at all.

—How to open and close church doors.

—How to greet guests and each other.

—Elimination of singing and chanting.

—And much more.

Gov. Newsom even decrees how Holy Communion must now be handled.

Newsom’s illegal and unconstitutional orders, in effect, rewrite and replace large portions of the Bible! Newsom apparently thinks he can serve the role of both king and priest.

What is perhaps most telling about Gavin Newsom’s orders is that they are expressly directed against religious worship.

His July 6 order clearly states, “this guidance is not intended for … other activities that places of worship may provide.” The directive is only meant to restrict religious worship.

In other words, a church building can serve as a homeless shelter, a soup kitchen or provide counsel on finding a job or applying for unemployment—all with no numerical restrictions—but as soon as the activity becomes religious worship, Newsom’s orders slam the door.

If the ordering of no singing and micromanaging every aspect of worship were not bad enough, on July 13, Newsom banned all worship for 80% of the state’s population, even in private homes!

Again, nonreligious activity is permitted in churches, but the moment a Bible is opened or preaching and worship begin in that same facility engaging the very same people, that church and its leaders are in violation of Newsom’s orders and face criminal prosecution, $1,000-a-day fines and even imprisonment.

Newsom initially closed churches, calling them “nonessential.” Then he said they could have no more than 100 people—no matter the size of the sanctuary. Then he banned singing and chanting and ordered the details of worship. Then, he banned all worship, even in private homes for Bible study and fellowship.

No one can rewrite the Bible. And no one can change God’s directives for our worship and our lives.

That is why we are fighting in federal court on behalf of Harvest Rock Church and Harvest International Ministry that has 162 churches in California.

As a legal ministry defending our unalienable right to religious freedom, we know that no government figure—not even California king and high priest Gavin Newsom—can dictate religious practices to the church.

I have said this repeatedly for years, and never more frequently than during the last six months: The church cannot be rendered to Caesar, and it cannot be ordered or directed by Caesar. The church never was subject to Casear—or to California Gov. Gavin Newsom.

SOURCE: Liberty Counsel

via California Governor Rewrites Church Law — BCNN1 – Black Christian News Network

Saturday Sampler: August 9 — August 15 — The Outspoken TULIP

If you want Good advice in turbulent times, visit Attempts at Honestly for wise words from Mark McIntyre. This one reminds us where our focus really belongs.

The time is short, warns Elizabeth Prata in an essay for The End Time this week. Eschatology is one of her areas of expertise, so I highly recommend that give serious attention to what she has to say.

Ouch! As someone who is trying to repent of reckless behavior online, I feel a bit of sting from Keith Mathison’s Causing Little Ones to Stumble in Light In Dark Places. What do your children learn from Christian posts on Facebook and Twitter? I found this one courtesy of Tim Challies.

Speaking of Tim Challies, his post on Why You Really Need To Be Praying For Your Pastor pulls back a curtain on the extra pressures pastors face because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Pastoring is difficult in the best of times. So be more diligent than ever to pray for your pastor — we most assuredly aren’t living in the best of times.

Reaching into her archives, Michelle Lesley posts Throwback Thursday ~ 4 Ways We’re Getting Women’s Discipleship Wrong, and How We Can Get It Right! Michelle writes with passion because of her overwhelming desire to see women properly trained to serve the Lord. Her thoughts remind me of why I write weekly Bible Studies on Colossians.

Peter Krol of Knowable Word writes Job: How to Fear the Lord When Everything Falls Apart at a time when everything really does seem to be falling apart. This outline of Job encourages us to find practical help as we study God’s Word.

I must include a second post by Elizabeth Prata. Why John MacArthur’s people are strong challenges us as we see the beginning of real persecution on American soil. Even if you disagree with MacArthur’s actions (though I don’t know why you would), consider Elizabeth’s applications. We live in serious times, and we need to answer the questions that she poses.

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via Saturday Sampler: August 9 — August 15 — The Outspoken TULIP

A Stark Statistical Reality is Coming for Evangelicals on Social Issues — BCNN1 – Black Christian News Network

Unsplash/Kenny Luo

(RNS) — Among the important changes occurring on the U.S. spiritual landscape, the shift away from religious affiliation in the last 40 years is the most seismic and most significant — the rise of that demographic known as the “nones,” which has gone from 5% of the population in 1972 to 23% of the population in 2018.

The phenomenon, however, has left white evangelical Christianity’s numbers practically untouched. In fact, the nation’s share of white evangelical Protestants has dropped a mere two percentage points since 2000 and is essentially the same size as it was in the early 1980s.

Evangelicalism is on a collision course, however, with a culture that is rapidly liberalizing on two areas that define evangelical theology: their view of homosexuality and the role of women in the life of the church. A tradition quite literally named for its ability to bring new people to the faith is finding that task harder each passing year, as the doctrines of the tradition move further out of step with the country at large.

In 2008, just one in three white evangelicals between the ages of 18 and 35 believed that same-sex couples should have the right to be married. Beginning in 2012, though, acceptance of gay marriage jumped from 36% to 56% in just six years. There’s reason to believe that two-thirds of young evangelicals now disagree with their church’s position on this issue.

When it comes to women taking on leadership roles, support for women’s equality among evangelicals under the age of 35 has also exploded. A poll conducted by Denison University political scientist Paul Djupe and me in March 2020 found that just 12.4% of the youngest evangelicals objected to the idea of a woman preaching at the pulpit during a worship service, which is expressly forbidden in any Southern Baptist Church.

One of the dominant understandings of how churches attract new members is referred to as religious economy theory. In this view, churches are equated with businesses. Each provides a product to a potential audience. If the product is palatable, it will see an increase in “sales,” expressed as church attendance. If the church does not meet the needs of consumers, attendance will dwindle, and the church will go out of business.

From this perspective, the evangelical church is selling Blackberries while Apple has just begun shipping iPhones.

If the white evangelical tradition expects to maintain its share of the religious landscape, it has to do two things: keep the young people who were raised in the church while also attracting new converts. But making sales to this demographic is getting harder by the day. Nearly 80% of Americans under the age of 35 support same-sex marriage, and just 8.8% believe that women should not be able to preach.

That leaves the white evangelical church a choice. First, it could stand on doctrine and say that fidelity to orthodox evangelicalism is worth the price of potentially shrinking in size. There is integrity in this path. I’ve had many evangelicals tell me, “God does not care about public opinion polls.” As a social scientist who is also a pastor, I’m sympathetic to the view that God can change hearts. But I see no evidence of divine intervention in the data.

Alternatively, evangelicalism could begin to slowly shift its stance on issues like women pastors and same-sex relations. There is some evidence that, on the issue of homosexuality, there has already been some softening. Work by Paul Djupe found that while 90% of evangelicals believed that their house of worship forbade homosexuality in 2007, that has dropped to 65% in 2020.

One of the largest and most successful church planting networks in the United States is Acts 29, which provides startup funding for pastors who want to plant a new church. As with many grants, the funds come with strings attached — most importantly, requiring that the church plant align with key doctrines of the organization. Acts 29 prohibits homosexuality as well as female pastors.

Imagine a church planter who is painfully aware that their church needs to grow large enough to support itself very quickly, but also knows that those two core doctrines will turn off many in the local community being reached.

For many pastors across the country, these are not theoretical technical discussions, such as whether mobile devices were better with physical keyboards, or esoteric matters of theology. They are very real struggles about vocation and calling and the survival of their organization.

These fights will only intensify in the future. The recent decision by the United Methodist Church to split over same-sex marriage is just the first of many salvos in a period of reckoning for American evangelicalism. And while they continue to fight, the “nones” tick up another percentage every year or two.

Source: Religion News Service

via A Stark Statistical Reality is Coming for Evangelicals on Social Issues — BCNN1 – Black Christian News Network

News Weakly – 8/15/20 — Winging It

Slippery Slope Fallacy, Meet Reality
“Don’t let those college players get paid for this,” they cried. “The next thing you know they’ll want a players’ union and minimum wage and …” “Slippery slope fallacy,” was the reply. So the report is out that college players are calling for … you guessed it … a players’ union. It’s not a fallacy if it actually happens.

Government Sucks
This is amazing. After that nightmarish explosion in Beirut, the entire government resigned. Gone. It’s what’s called a “vacuum,” and, as we all know, vacuums suck. (That’s a pun, in case you weren’t sure.) Some might wonder if the same sort of thing would be good or bad for America.

Changed Hearts, Changed Minds
They released the full body cam video of the police encounter with George Floyd. It shows a man resisting arrest. It does not exonerate the officer that killed him by kneeling on his neck. It does call into question 1) the level of murder this rises to and 2) the allegation that it was racism — a hate crime. Does it change anyone’s mind? I’d bet that’s a largely “no” answer, because regardless of your view on this, it was predetermined by your heart before it ever was examined by your mind.

The Real Story
First, there was a riot in Chicago because police, responding to a call about someone with a gun, were shot at and returned fire. In the riot, officers were injured and more than 100 rioters were arrested. Then there was a rally for the police arrested because the argument is that looting is right and reasonable. “Our futures have been looted from us,” one sign read. “Loot back.” “‘I don’t care if someone decides to loot a Gucci or a Macy’s or a Nike store, because that makes sure that person eats,’ Ariel Atkins, a BLM organizer, said. ‘That makes sure that person has clothes.'” “‘That is reparations,’ Atkins said.” The real story is many in the movement want to fight offense with crime; the ends justify the means.

Only the Name is News
I think we all knew Biden would select a black woman for his running mate. In that sense, his selection of Kamala Harris is not news. If Biden’s camp had drawn up a list of potential running mates using an intersectionality chart, I don’t think he could have found a candidate with much more intersection. She’s black and Asian, female and Californian. Lots of intersectional oppression there. And while Biden is largely center in his political stance, she’s not. She favors single-payer healthcare and killing babies in the womb, favors federal legalization of marijuana and prostitution, and favors reparations for black people. Harris was part of the group of lawmakers that introduced a $10 trillion plan to address climate change and, more recently, favored an aid package that would have increased the $4 trillion coronavirus aid package, giving $2,000 a month to all adults and dependents. She favors a law that makes it a crime for parents to have children who are truant and, on the other hand, free college for all. Oh, and, of course, she has stated that entering the country illegally is not a crime. If Biden is center, Harris is left.

Peace that Passes Understanding
If Islam is the “religion of peace,” it sure looks odd this week. Someone posted something in India on Facebook perceived as offensive to Muslims and the rioting began, including rocks, burned cars, and a torched police station. Christians aren’t always what they ought to be, but I can’t think of anything that would cause a violent riot among Christians because of an insult to the faith. We are promised a “peace that passes understanding,” which is not this kind of unfathomable version of “peace.”

Dear Mr. Trump,
Stop, please, just stop. I’ve been voting by mail for 15 years. If there was any surprises in that time, it was your election. Opposing mail-in voting appears to me to be sheer conspiracy-theory thinking on a grand scale. And then to request a mail-in ballot so you can vote? That’s a deeply double standard, isn’t it? I’d prefer to have a president that doesn’t fall for those kinds of shenanigans. Terminating the mail service so you can have your way with mail-in voting is just as offensive to me as all those protesters that block roads and upset the general public for their personal causes. It’s counterproductive and childish. Stop it, please. Be a man, just this once.

Do and Die
The coronavirus crisis is bad for our health. The CDC says so. No, not in the obvious way. It is the prevention that is hurting us. CDC researchers found that serious depression, mental health problems, thoughts of suicide, anxiety disorders, and drug and alcohol use are up significantly. Oh, and it’s worst among the younger generation and Black Americans and Hispanics as well as those most likely to have adverse economic impact. Among health workers 21% are experiencing these effects. Coronavirus is killing us, and it’s not all the disease; some is the panic required by leadership. When is the cure worse than the disease?

Scary Humor
I didn’t want to, but I had to laugh at the headline: “Biden: ‘A Black Woman Will Become President Over My Dead Body’.” Funny and terrifying all at once.

via News Weakly – 8/15/20 — Winging It

Early Ignorance Of The Assumption Of Mary — Triablogue

Today is the Feast of the Assumption, commemorating Mary’s alleged bodily assumption to heaven. There’s a significant line of evidence that’s seldom discussed that suggests the early Christians had no concept of an assumption of Mary. Many early patristic sources cite Enoch, Elijah, and Paul as examples of people who didn’t die, were translated to heaven, etc., yet they never say any such thing about Mary or include her as an example (e.g., Clement of Rome, First Clement, 9; Tertullian, A Treatise On The Soul, 50; Tertullian, On The Resurrection Of The Flesh, 58; Tertullian, Against Marcion, 5:12; Origen, in Thomas Scheck, trans., Origen: Commentary On The Epistle To The Romans, Books 1-5 [Washington, D.C.: The Catholic University Of America Press, 2001], 5:4:3, p. 340; Methodius, From The Discourse On The Resurrection, 14; Apostolic Constitutions, 5:7; Cyril of Jerusalem, Catechetical Lectures, 3:6; John Chrysostom, Homilies On John, 75; Jerome, To Pammachius Against John Of Jerusalem, 29, 32; Faustus, cited in Augustine, Reply To Faustus The Manichaean, 26:1; Augustine, On The Grace Of Christ, And On Original Sin, 2:27). Irenaeus, for instance, writes about the power of God to deliver people from death, and he cites Enoch, Elijah, and Paul (2 Corinthians 12:2) as illustrations of people who were “assumed” and “translated”, but he says nothing of Mary (Against Heresies, 5:5). How likely is it that all of these sources, commenting in so many different contexts, would all refrain from mentioning Mary’s assumption, even though they knew of it? They’re sometimes describing Christian beliefs in general, not just their own, which makes their failure to mention Mary even more significant. If these early Christians held as high a view of Mary as Roman Catholicism does, or even close to so high a view, you’d expect them to cite her more than anybody else. Instead, they don’t cite her at all.

via Early Ignorance Of The Assumption Of Mary — Triablogue